Robert M Young
New York filmmaker who collaborated on a number of documentaries with Michael Roemer in the 1960s, notably "Cortile Cascino/The Inferno" (1962), shot for the NBC series "White Paper" but deemed too controversial to air. Young's first fiction feature as a director was the 1977 adaptation of Miguel Pinero's harrowing stage play "Short Eyes".
Young's films are noted for their gritty, unglamorous qualities and fine use of locations. Highlights include "Rich Kids" (1979), a realistic portrait of two upper-class Manhattan juveniles watching their parents' world fall apart, "Alambrista!" (1978), about the exploitation of a naive Mexican after he has crossed the border to the US, and "The Ballad of Gregorio Cortez" (1983), based on the true story of a Mexican who killed a US sheriff in 1901.
Young has begun to reach a wider audience in the 1980s with films such as the Farrah Fawcett vehicle "Extremities" (1986) and the concentration camp drama "Triumph of the Spirit" (1989), starring Willem Dafoe.