A block in Hamilton Heights gets a retro makeover for Ed Norton's 'Motherless Brooklyn'

Updated: Jul 4, 2020

Wondering why a small stretch of 148th Street in Hamilton Heights is suddenly in a 1950s time warp?

The movie Motherless Brooklyn, set in mid-20th century New York, is shooting today in this northern corner of Harlem.

Directed by and starring Ed Norton, the thriller is based on the Jonathan Lethem novel about a detective with Tourette's Syndrome who tries to solve his mentor's murder.

The cast also includes Bruce Willis, Alec Baldwin, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Cherry Jones.

Vintage signs for a hardware store, pens and a hosiery shop are clustered near the corner of Amsterdam Avenue and 148th Street, which has temporarily been turned into East 108th Street and Lexington Avenue.

Nearby stands a vintage newsstand and an old telephone booth.

The rest of the street is lined on both sides with old Plymouths and other mid-century automobiles, a thrill for many passers-by.

"You'll never see this many old cars outside of Cuba," said one woman who was snapping pictures of vintage models with her phone.

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