Before Sept. 11, 2001, turned Rudy Giuliani into a saint, there was a time when his 'œautocratic rule over Gotham ruffled more than a few feathers,' said Jay Weissberg in Variety. Veteran videographer Kevin Keating remembers that time, and resuscitates it with his first-rate documentary Giuliani Time. Investigative biographer Wayne Barrett guides Keating through Giuliani's hidden family past, with its links to gambling, the mob, and Sing Sing. They then follow Giuliani's promotion in the U.S. Attorney's office and his controversial role in the deportation of Haitian boat people, before spending the bulk of the movie on his years as mayor. There are some 'œnauseating surprises,' said Michael Atkinson in The Village Voice. A particularly memorable moment shows Giuliani mocking a Parkinson's patient who called in to his radio show—a man reduced to poverty by the mayor's policies. The film's title refers to an even more nauseating event, said A.O. Scott in The New York Times. Abner Louima, the Haitian immigrant tortured and sodomized by New York cops, claimed they uttered the phrase as they abused him. He later retracted the claim, which makes Keating's use 'œall the more provocative.' But while hardly objective, the film is not one-sided. It includes many of Giuliani's supporters, and grants him credit for stemming crime. Most important, we should be thankful for the film for reminding us how complicated Giuliani 'œwas and remains.'
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