Spring is in the air and Coney Island’s Opening Day is a mere five weeks away, but this short film by Josh A. Kapusinski was shot when the beach and boardwalk were still blanketed with snow. “The King of Merriment is a film that explores the happiness and beauty of Coney Island and its regular visitors in full winter charm – mashed up and juxtaposed with archival footage from Coney in its heyday of the 1940s and 50s,” says the film-maker, an Emmy-winning motion graphics designer.
We’re not usually a fan of mashups, but this one is very adeptly done. If some of the restaurants and shops that are open year-round were shown, it could be a promo for Coney Island in winter. Vivid, dreamlike sequences of people playing frisbee, bicycling, and walking in a snowy and silent Coney contrast with audio and video from a 1940′s travelogue in which the narrator described “a place where Merriment is King.” Perhaps the most striking detail is vintage footage of Nathan’s hot dogs being cooked on a griddle projected onto the shuttered gates of Nathan’s Boardwalk eatery in winter.
For info on what to see and do in Coney Island before the rides open for the season on April 13th, check out our post “Coney Island Always: Visiting the Big CI Year-Round,” (ATZ, Sept. 13, 2013).
Related posts on ATZ…
February 23, 2014: Sunday Matinee: Under the Roller Coaster (2005)
March 10, 2011: Video: Seasons of the Cyclone Roller Coaster by Charles Denson
February 2, 2011: Video: Coney Island —> Times Square by David Patrick Alexander