Pussy Riot documentary to top summer film series at Socrates

A Pussy Riot documentary kicks off the Socrates Sculpture Park outdoor film series next month. Photo courtesy of Socrates Sculpture Park
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The annual outdoor summer film festival at Socrates Sculpture Park will get underway in July with a real attention-getter.

A documentary about Russian punk-rock band Pussy Riot will kick off the 16th season July 2.

“Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer” will have its first public screening since it was banned in Moscow in December.

The film by Maxim Pozdorovkin and Mike Lerner follows the feminist rockers’ protest performance in a Moscow cathedral followed by their arrest and trial that captured headlines around the world.

The band was protesting the head of the Orthodox Church for supporting Vladimir Putin’s campaign for president and they were subsequently charged with hooliganism.

The film won best documentary at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

The free Outdoor Cinemas festival will be staged on the waterfront at Socrates Sculpture Park with a different international film every Wednesday in July and August. The lineup includes movies from Sweden, Senegal, England, New Zealand, Argentina, central Africa, France, Italy, Japan and Russia. The festival is a collaboration between the park, Film Forum and Rooftop Films.

“With this impressive roster of foreign films, Film Forum has once again put forth an extraordinary season that truly reflects the cultural diversity of Queens,” Socrates Executive Director John Hatfield said. “From the controversial rock documentary ‘A Punk Prayer’ to the stunning ‘Microcosmos,’ this line-up features something for everyone.”

Each film will be presented in their original language with English subtitles and accompanied by public performances that celebrate the culture of the film as well as regional cuisine.

Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4538.

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