On Saturday, September 5th, the Hamptons International Film Festival concluded its Summer Documentary series with a screening of William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe, produced and directed by Kunstler's daughters, Emily and Sarah. The film covers the life and career of the colorful, at times outrageous, and, often, highly effective attorney. Kunstler's career as a lawyer and activist spanned the civil rights movement in the early 60's, the legendary Chicago Eight case in 1968 (and beyond), the massacre at Attica and its aftermath and the American Indian Movement protests at Wounded Knee in 1973. His later career, almost exclusively as a criminal defense attorney, encompassed John Gotti, the "Central Park Jogger" case, Meir Kahane's assassin and "cop killer" Larry Davis, to name but a few.
This is a wonderful film and Emily and Sarah Kunstler have done a remarkable job in presenting their famous father in an honest, critical light. Kunstler's activities and predilections had a profound effect on his family, including an earlier marriage. Yet, Kunstler's life is a near perfect perspective from which to view the 1960's, 70's and 80's. The film is great history.
William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe will premiere theatrically in November in select cities. Their website is www.disturbingtheuniverse.com and I encourage everyone to rush to see this movie and discover/rediscover the life and career of the brilliant William Kunstler. The Hamptons International Film Festival runs October 8th through 12th. For more information, go to www.hamptonsfilmfest.org.
Two other quick items. Thank you to those who corrected my mangling of Ted Kennedy's chronology. Yes, I had EMK running against Carter for the nomination in 1976. Or at least it sounded that way. I often write these things, bleary-eyed, at 1 AM. So, thank you for that correction.
Also, running for the Senate against Joe Lieberman would involve moving to Connecticut and I live in New York. I like New York. I have lived here all my life. My immediate family stretches from the Syracuse area to Nyack in Rockland County to Manhattan to eastern Long Island. I like Connecticut, but I'm not moving there. As for Lieberman, I was amused by his "Make my day" retort. Lieberman, who betrayed his party and whose leadership and ideas are so enervated and in need of replacing? That Lieberman channeling Clint Eastwood? Now that's funny. Ned Lamont in 2012.