Monday, August 18, 2008

High Anxiety

On the morning of Aug. 7, 1974, after months of preparation and years of dreaming, a French daredevil named Philippe Petit stepped into the sky above Lower Manhattan. For almost 45 minutes he ambled back and forth on a metal cable strung between the towers of the World Trade Center, a feat of illegal tightrope walking that, according to a New York Police Department sergeant who recounted Petit’s act of physical poetry in dry press-conference prose, would more aptly be described as dancing.

Even though Michael and I have already seen the film, just reading that description of "Man on Wire" in the NYT still makes my palms sweat, so you can only imagine 90 minutes' worth. Despite my trepidation, Philippe and his co-conspirators' childish glee at getting away with something so crazy and so magnificent -- and make no mistake, it was truly a glorious sight to see -- made for a compelling movie outing. (NYT)

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