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4:50 ONLY



“Hello, bookstore,” is how Matthew Tannenbaum has answered the phone at his Lenox, Massachusetts independent shop every day since 1976. Charming, avuncular, eccentric, relaxed: a man surrounded by great literature, friendly neighbors, and tree-lined streets in a town where time seems to have stood still. A.B. Zax captures the sensibility of the dedicated reader for whom a bookstore is a tiny piece of paradise, a Brigadoon where one savors great words and ideas merely by browsing its wares. Peppered with passages from My Ántonia (Willa Cather), Beautiful Losers (Leonard Cohen), The Human Stain (Philip Roth), Henry V (William Shakespeare), and poetry by Billy Collins, Robert Frost, and Edna St. Vincent Millay, HELLO, BOOKSTORE is a valentine to human creativity, of both the literary and entrepreneurial kind. When the Covid epidemic renders bookstores off-limits, Tannenbaum needs to regroup, and Zax’s story becomes only more inspiring.

Presented with support from the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation Fund and the Ada Katz Fund for Literature in Film

2021     86 MINS       USA         GREENWICH ENTERTAINMENT


“A tribute to the love of reading and the pleasures of a smartly stocked bookstore. Tannenbaum’s fondness for his store and its wares is a beautiful thing to behold.”
– Lisa Kennedy, The New York Times

“Captures the feel and flow of the life of this independent bookstore. An offbeat, extremely atmospheric look at what longstanding small business entrepreneurs mean to communities that surround them... Zax’s camera elegantly captures  Tannenbaum seeping into the community at large through language and storytelling, finding his happiness through these interactions. HELLO, BOOKSTORE moves slowly, encompassing multitudes as innumerable small moments collect around its subject. An earnest and urgent homage.”
– Veronica Esposito, The Guardian (UK)

“Compelling and heartwarming. A drama worthy of Hollywood magic created by Frank Capra and Jimmy Stewart.”
– Thomas Farragher, The Boston Globe


Film Forum