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Ex Libris
The New York Public Library

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Comments (17)

Anonymous picture

At three hours seventeen minutes this fly-on-the-wall documentary about the New York Public Library may appear daunting, but Wiseman's film about the institution masterfully glides between vignettes of library life - from administrator meetings juggling budgets, to luminaries delivering ...Read more

Anonymous picture

God-tier editing and shot-framing.

Richardchristopher avatar

Mandatory viewing for anyone working in a library along with The Library Book (2018) by Susan Orlean. “Ex Libris”, which is often seen on a personal bookplate and means, from the Latin, “from the books of ________";,fill in the blank with your own name. The film is a wise man's very long doc ...Read more

Anonymous picture

My wife and I were disappointed in this one.

We love our NYPL and are both humanities types, so we thought seeing inside our beloved institution would be an inspiring and enlightening effort. What was missing in this film was a narrative thread to hang these "found scenes" ...Read more

Anonymous picture

Wiseman is a master, and these criticisms aren't even specious - they're ignorant. lol :)

Anonymous picture

As I watched this film on a library-provided streaming service, I was so grateful for everything my public library (in Calgary) does for me and the community. This seems like a critical time for libraries, and for their role in society. If this film has an agenda for what that should be, it ...Read more

Anonymous picture

Brilliant film. I love this look inside NYPL -- what an institution and what a community hub. If nothing else, this film should serve as a strong signifier of the need for public libraries. Great film. Long, took breaks, but love it. Cried. Laughed. Got bored. Got inspired. Kinda like hangin ...Read more

Anonymous picture

it would have been enjoyable if there were labels of people who are speaking and the events they are in. Disappointing to some extent.

Anonymous picture

Well-intentioned, but too many excerpts from lectures, ot all of which were interesting. Needed more focus on some splendid library services: ordering a book you want,for example. I think, based on my own experience and that of others I know, that many, if not most, still read library ...Read more

Theresa avatar

I think it would have been less confusing and disorienting if there had been some markers in the film.. little transparent labels denoting event, and or speaker. I don't understand the people who say there weren't books in the documentary. There were books all over the place and some of the ...Read more

Anonymous picture

well that was really disappointing.

Anonymous picture

Am I thought you were.not so great.about all your words and you say

Anonymous picture

Lovely documentary. Almost four hours without a single sight of a book. No glimpse of the NYPL reading room, of the check-out process No glimpse of the stacks. Or of the book storage spaces. Two minutes devoted to the Berg collection and its manuscripts. A triumphant evacuation of the ...Read more

Anonymous picture

Infuriatitng! Nearly 3 hours of pure images, you come out learning almost nothing, Wiseman doesn't tell you exactly what you're looking at, who's talking, nothing. It's almost an insult to such a great wondrous institution as the NYPL, he just uses it to exercise his insane concept of ...Read more

Anonymous picture

Brilliant! Long and about as fully encompassing as you can get on the subject of the NYPL. It's for those who like to hear ideas discussed and for the curious about the inner workings of the organization. I got a deeper understanding of the NYPL as an result.

Anonymous picture

absolutely shows what a great and serving institution the NYPL has developed into. I spent many hours during college researching papers for history classes and loved every minute of its grandeur. Now as a retired librarian I enjoyed seeing all that has developed in this marvelous institution ...Read more

Anonymous picture

I went to the NY public library today to do some actual research. There were some people using the (impressive) catalogue and materials, plus about ten million tourists clogging up every walkway while taking photographs of themselves against a backdrop of books.