'The Pleasures of Being Out of Step': The documentary details the varied career of writer Nat Hentoff

( Unrated ) ( Monitor Movie Guide )

'Pleasures,' which is a laudatory documentary about longtime former Village Voice columnist Nat Hentoff, is directed by David L. Lewis.

David L. Lewis/First Run Features
Nat Hentoff works at his office in Greenwich Village.

Nat Hentoff, the longtime former Village Voice columnist and First Amendment advocate, is the subject of David L. Lewis’s laudatory documentary, “The Pleasures of Being Out of Step,” and the title says it all. Still going strong in his ‘80s, Hentoff has had one of the more variegated careers in American letters. One of the great chroniclers of the jazz scene, he has also championed free speech with a libertarian fervor and rallied against abortion (alienating him from most of his liberal cohorts in the process). 

The documentary includes peerless clips of Billie Holiday and Lester Young from a TV show Hentoff coproduced as well as snatches of an interview with a young Bob Dylan, a clip of Hentoff on William Buckley’s “Firing Line” TV show, and lots more worth your time. Grade: B+ (Unrated.)

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