Cinematic Atlas: A Guide to Martin Scorsese's New York

Carmine Street Pool (Raging Bull, 1980)

Neighborhood: West Village
AddressClarkson Street

Raging Bull is Scorsese's greatest achievement, his most beautiful and painful film. A great deal of its beauty comes from the crisp black and white cinematography, which is so evocative during this scene in particular, the moment where Jake La Motta (Robert De Niro) first talks to his future wife, Vickie (Cathy Moriarty).

Shot at Carmine Street Pool in the West Village, the scene was largely improvised by the two actors. Jake touches her fingers through the fence as a kind of hand shake; they talk. The wire mesh separating them is gone, but the life guard's chair and the diving board appear unmoved. Like St. Patrick's Old Cathedral, this area still buzzed with the film's energy, a sensation made all the stronger by the early morning quiet and lack of people. The pool is unfilled, closed until summer.

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