Drivers Wanted Directed Joshua Z. Weinstein Wed., June 20 at 8 p.m. at Round House Theatre. Also on Fri., June 22 at 9:15 p.m. at AFI Silver Theatre 3.

Cab drivers are always here to serve the people of New York City, one of them assures us in Drivers Wanted, Joshua Z. Weinstein and Jean Tsien’s portrait of a garage in Queens and the men who work there. While ferrying the masses, cabbies see a cross-section of New York. They observe the city at all hours. They learn who runs the streets, and when. They meet passengers and fellow drivers from around the world. The film, like the drivers’ jobs, is slow, filled with montages of New York in the wee hours. But it’s also populated by characters who find a respite in the driver’s seat, whether from racism in their hometowns or life without work. This isn’t a romantic panorama of New York, a fact plainly evidenced by the film’s many close shots. It’s New York from the driver’s seat, with the street stretching out ahead and buildings and people barely in view. A driver breaks for tea when he sees no fares. He struggles with his meter. The film rarely shifts out of first gear, but gradually shows us how a driver might fall in love with the job.

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