• June 12, 2011

    Happy 30th, “Raiders of the Lost Ark”


    Compiled by Michael Coate

    “The thing to keep in mind about RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK is that it is only a movie. It takes all the license of an exotic entertainment that aims to thrill and scare and strike one with a sense of wonder.” — Steven Spielberg

  • June 9, 2011

    Demolition of the National Theatre: Still Makes Me Sick

    This one got past my CT radar, but if you love the National Theatre in Westwood (Los Angeles), check out this amazing tombstone in a Curbed LA blog post. That empty lot is a dagger in my stomach and in my soul.

    Its demolition still makes me sick.

  • June 7, 2011

    Anderson Cooper on Alamo Drafthouse and texting in theaters

    Anderson Cooper joins the Alamo’s new legion of supporters:

  • February 7, 2011

    Viewing the Oscars at the local theater

    With rumors that the world-wide Oscar television audiences are diminishing there will always be movie fans who long to watch it from start to its drawn out conclusion. More so, these devout die-hards would much rather be there, in person, if possible.

    One feeling of almost being present in Hollywood is to watch this fabulous ceremony on the BIG screen hosted by an historic theater. This is something this writer has enjoyed several times, for free, at the glorious Bagdad Theatre in Portland, Oregon.

  • August 14, 2010

    The End of Theatrical Moviegoing?

    Blogger and industry executive Mark Lipsky is speaking out against the future of theatrical moviegoing — and in favor of the coming digital options — in a series of posts that have spurred a lot of angry debate at Here’s a sampling from his original post:

    There are currently about 6,000 theaters in the U.S. containing nearly 40,000 screens. In 10 years there will be under 1,000 and in 15, under 100. And we won’t miss them.

    … and from his follow up piece after getting a number of angry responses:

    I realize that moviegoers of a certain age (let’s call it 30+ to be generous) have romantic and/or nostalgic notion about theater-going. Not so for younger folks or anyone born today and forever after. Instead, those folks will embrace the coming sea-change with abandon. They’ll barely have a thought that movie theaters even existed outside the few that remain…

  • February 19, 2010

    The iPhone Palace

    Happy to see that the magic of the movie theatre will never go away.

  • December 10, 2009

    The past decade was SUPER, SUPER, SUPER (but not all of it was good!).

    The decade is almost over! Reflecting on it, it would seem that we were bombarded with more sequels, remakes and CGI effects-driven-who-cares-about-a-good-story films than ever before. But I think if someone were to ask me what I’ll remember most about the movies between the years 2000 through 2009, I’d have to definitely say it was the decade of the SUPER COMIC BOOK HERO!

    Not to say, of course, that the screen has not graced generations of moviegoers with legendary superheroes before – the 1930s and 1940s provided the weekly serial cliffhangers of Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers and Batman. Max Fleisher gave us the best short Superman cartoons ever made.

    For my generation (35+), the screen superhero had a fresh new beginning when Warner Brothers brought “Superman”(1978) to the big screen, and it was larger than life. Between 1978 and 1982, it seemed the screen super comic heroes were back in action, and it also included films like “Flash Gordon” (1980), “The Legend of the Lone Ranger (1980), "Superman II” (1981) and “Conan The Barbarian”(1982). The rest of the decade, unfortunately, brought super-disasterous results with turkeys like “Superman III & IV”, “Supergril” and “Conan the Destroyer”.

  • August 26, 2009

    1979 was the year of the vampire!

    If you were to recall movies and TV thirty years ago, you might remember that Dracula and other vampires had become quite popular in pop culture entertainment.

    • “Love at First Bite” (April 1979) – George Hamilton played the legendary Count who comes to New York City to sweep sexy model Susan Saint James off of her feet. This was, of course, a silly comedy, but it set the stage in our minds for more of the “Prince of Darkness” to come in the following months.

    • “Dracula” (July 1979) – This was director John Badham’s (“Saturday Night Fever”) second film based on the hit play of the ‘70s, which also starred Frank Langella as the Count. I’m probably in the minority when I say that this has always been my favorite film version of Bram Stoker’s classic tale. Maybe it’s Langella’s good looks and sexiness (and this is coming from a heterosexual male!), maybe it the class, charm and grace he brings to the character (no disrespect intended toward Bela Legosi), or maybe it’s the rich color and score by John Williams that adds more depth to the story. Who knows. This version just seemed to always work better for me.

  • August 10, 2009

    Director John Hughes - Don’t You Forget About Him.

    There was a time in the world of movies, somewhere between 1984 and 1989 when director John Hughes ruled the screens. With a successful string of theatrical hits like “Sixteen Candles”, “Weird Science”, “The Breakfast Club”, “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”, “Planes Trains & Automobiles” and “Uncle Buck”, his films not only addressed and embraced the rather tedious social lives of young people, but also brought a new degree of fun to screen comedy. Several of his films ushered in the era of the “Brat Pack” in the 1980s, which included young stars like Molly Ringwald, Ally Sheedy and Anthony Michael Hall.

    I was saddened to hear that John Hughes died of a heart attack in New York City last Thursday August 6, 2009 – this following what has seemed like an unfortunate string of celebrity deaths this summer, including Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson (both of them on the same day, no less).