The Pruitt-Igoe Myth is a thoughtful film that examines both the mythology and the history of a St. Louis housing complex. Once monuments to modernism and the new look of the city, Pruitt-Igoe’s buildings remain in the popular imagination as little more than an instance of public housing gone terribly awry. Fraught with crime, drug abuse, and structural decay, the Pruitt-Igoe complex was eventually demolished and dismissed as a social-policy failure. Using historical footage and interviews with former inhabitants, the film reclaims the mythology of Pruitt-Igoe by questioning and re-contextualizing its demise. The film goes beyond the crumbling walls of the buildings to examine issues of community identity, gentrification, civil rights, and the changing face of cities in America in the 1960s.
Friday, June 24 at 1 p.m.; also on Sunday, June 26 at 7 p.m. Both showings at AFI Silver 3.