'Medium Cool' blended fact and fiction while capturing the '68 riots in Chicago. Could a filmmaker today — should a filmmaker today — do the same?
CHICAGO — When thousands of anti-war protesters came to Chicago in the summer of 1968 during the Democratic National Convention, filmmaker Haskell Wexler was there on the ground with his camera, shooting his narrative feature “Medium Cool” for Paramount.The movie is fiction (mostly) with actors and a script. But a chunk near the end was shot like a documentary, when Wexler sent his lead actress — in character — out into the very real, very combustible goings on at Grant Park and the downtown streets nearby. For long stretches, we see her threading her way through police lines and crowds of pro...