NYC IN THE 1940s

A Youtube artist (and I mean ARTIST) named NASS specializes in taking old documentary footage of New York City and Los Angeles and revitalizing them (footage shot, for the most part, to serve as rear-projection plates for movies–you know, the backgrounds of driving scenes where you can tell the actors aren’t really driving since they look directly at each other the whole time). By bumping the frame rate to 60 fps and colorizing the footage (not to mention adding sound effects) he brings you back to the era with an eerie exactitude. The random nature of the footage gives it a Verite quality and his exquisite restoration work brings a reality to it that old black and white footage–glorious though it can be–can never deliver. The above video is a new one (at least to me). We are mostly on Fifth Avenue at sometime in the early 40s. The two-way traffic and the sparsity of the cars is fascinating as is the crisp and tidy feeling of the streets and the people wandering them. (Unbelievable that 5th was two-way until the mid-1960s). Enjoy five minutes of a long vanished Manhattan…


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