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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Akron Civic Theatre To Host Special 'Napoleon Dynamite' Screening and Discussion

Posted By on Tue, Sep 21, 2021 at 9:29 AM

Poster for the Akron Civic's screening of Napoleon Dynamite. - AKRONCIVIC.COM
  • Poster for the Akron Civic's screening of Napoleon Dynamite.
A cult classic if there ever were one, Napoleon Dynamite helped introduce the world to actor and comedian Jon Heder, who played the nerdy character after whom the film takes its name. His awkward movements and distinctive vocal delivery made his performance unforgettable.

At 7:30 on Friday, Oct. 8, the Akron Civic Theatre will host a special screening of Napoleon Dynamite followed by a moderated discussion with Heder, Efren Ramirez (Pedro) and Jon Gries (Uncle Rico).

Reserved tickets start at $25, and a limited number of VIP tickets are also available for $125.

In accordance with CDC guidelines, the Civic encourages all non-vaccinated persons to continue to wear masks.

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Friday, September 17, 2021

Cinematheque To Screen 'The Wind' as Part of Inaugural National Silent Movie Day

Posted By on Fri, Sep 17, 2021 at 12:17 PM

Lillian Gish in The Wind. - WARNER BROS.
  • Warner Bros.
  • Lillian Gish in The Wind.
The inaugural National Silent Movie Day will take place on Wednesday, Sept. 29, and the Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque will be among the 30 cinemas and performance venues participating.

The Cinematheque will screen the 1928 silent feature The Wind starring Lillian Gish. Martin Scorsese recently called this movie "one of the greatest films of the silent era,” noting that “if you’ve never seen a silent film, The Wind is an excellent place to begin."

 “The Wind is one of the artistic pinnacles of the silent era, and incredibly, it’s never before been shown at the Cinematheque,” says Cinematheque Director John Ewing in a statement.

Ohio-born Gish plays a "delicate young woman from Virginia" who travels west to live with relatives on the lonely Texas plains. The Cinematheque will show a vintage 35mm print (with a music track) of The Wind, which is directed by Victor Sjöström, the foremost filmmaker of the Swedish silent cinema, at 7 p.m. on Sept. 29.

Tickets cost $13, or $10 for Cinematheque members, CIA and CSU I.D. holders, and those age 25 and under. Face masks are required for all moviegoers. Free parking for filmgoers is available in Lot 73 and in the Institute’s annex lot, both off E. 117th St. south of Euclid Ave. 

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Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Cinematheque To Host 2021 Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour

Posted By on Wed, Sep 8, 2021 at 8:50 AM

A scene from BJ's Mobile Gift Shop. - SUNDANCE INSTITUTE
  • Sundance Institute
  • A scene from BJ's Mobile Gift Shop.
The Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque has just announced it’ll host the 2021 Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour, a 92-minute program of seven short films selected from this year’s festival.

The Cinematheque will host the program, which includes BJ's Mobile Gift Shop, a film about a young Korean-American hustler who makes sales out of his "mobile gift shop,” The Criminals, a movie about a young couple struggling to find a place to stay in Turkey, and KKUM, an animated film from South Korean director Kang-min Kim, at 9:20 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 17, and at 7:20 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 18.

The Short Film Tour features fiction, documentary, and animation from around the globe, and includes two special jury award winners from this year’s festival.

A launchpad for many now-prominent independent filmmakers, including Wes Anderson, Damien Chazelle, Dee Rees, David O. Russell, Joey Soloway, the festival received close to 10,000 short film submissions this year. Sundance selected a mere 50 to screen at its annual festival.

“For the past decade, our Short Film Tour has traveled across the United States to reach new audiences who might not get a chance to see some of the amazing shorts we find each year,” says Mike Plante, Senior Programmer for Sundance Film Festival, in a press release. “After having to pause last year due to the pandemic, we are excited to be able to bring these short films to audiences in-person and be part of programming that is welcoming independent film fans back to theaters. This year’s program continues our tradition of stories that speak to today’s world, explore the human condition, and entertain with a wide variety of styles.”

Cinematheque Director John Ewing says the Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour is one of the theater’s most popular annual programs.

“We’re pleased to be able to offer the latest edition to Cleveland moviegoers in our beautiful theater once again,” says Ewing.

Tickets to the 2021 Sundance Film Festival Short Film Tour cost $12, or $9 for Cinematheque members, CIA and CSU I.D. holders, and those age 25 and under. Masks are required for all moviegoers. Free parking is available in Lot 73 and in the Institute’s annex lot, both off E. 117th St. south of Euclid Ave.

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Friday, September 3, 2021

Break Out the Cheesecake: The Golden Girls Are Coming to the Big Screen at Cedar Lee for a Special Engagement

Posted By on Fri, Sep 3, 2021 at 9:56 AM

The gals - ABC STUDIOS
  • ABC Studios
  • The gals

Thank you for being a friend, Cleveland Cinemas, and bringing the beloved Golden Girls to the big screen at the Cedar Lee for a special September 14th engagement, "Forever Golden! A Celebration of the Golden Girls."

Golden Girls was way ahead of its time in tone, topics and humor, as well as for showing that women cultivated fulfilling and engaging — and very sexual, in the case of Blache — lives beyond their 20s. Heck, even beyond their 40s. It was the original Sex and the City and so damn good.

“There’s a reason The Golden Girls was nominated and won so many comedy awards. It’s just that funny,’” said Ray Nutt, Fathom Events CEO, in a release. “This celebration of the hilarious show is a treat for existing fans as well as a whole new generation to experience this classic sitcom.”

So put on your best Dorothy Zbornak power blazer, grab some cheesecake and imagine yourself on a lanai while you enjoy watching the following episodes:

*The Pilot
*Grab That Dough
*Journey To The Center Of Attention
*Henny Penny-Straight, No Chaser
*The Case Of The Libertine Belle

Cedar Lee will be offering a fan celebration separate from the admission ticket as well as Golden Girl-themed cocktails, a trivia contest and more.

More information here.

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Friday, August 13, 2021

Aut-O-Rama Drive-In Showing 'Back to the Future' Trilogy Every Night Next Weekend

Posted By on Fri, Aug 13, 2021 at 9:39 AM

Join Marty and crew at the Aut-O-Rama next weekend - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy photo
  • Join Marty and crew at the Aut-O-Rama next weekend

Get your self-lacing Nikes ready and take the cover off the DeLorean in the garage because the Aut-O-Rama drive-in is bringing the Back to the Future trilogy to its screens next weekend.

The triple-feature plays every night next Friday, Aug. 20 through Sunday, Aug. 22 starting at 9 p.m. and ending right around 3:30 a.m. Unless you have access to a time machine, that means some late nights and rough mornings, but for $10 for adults and $5 for kids, it'll be worth it.

Purchase tickets for the Back to the Future trilogy here.

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Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Respect is Formulaic Biopic Electrified by Jennifer Hudson's Vocals

Posted By on Tue, Aug 10, 2021 at 10:07 AM

Jennifer Hudson as Aretha Franklin in Respect - MGM / UA
  • MGM / UA
  • Jennifer Hudson as Aretha Franklin in Respect

Jennifer Hudson is surely one of only a handful of humans on earth who has both the acting and vocal chops to credibly portray Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul herself. In Respect, which opens Friday in wide release, Hudson channels Franklin in – beg pardon – a soulful performance that’s better and more electrifying than the film overall. It is equal to her Oscar-winning turn in Dreamgirls 15 years ago.

The film is a straightforward 2.5-hour musical biopic that more or less covers the same ground as Franklin’s Wikipedia entry. It still somehow manages to stumble upon the dramatic beats that audiences have seen in virtually every other musical biopic in existence. Would you believe Franklin had a terrible bout with substance abuse?

Still, Franklin’s iconic songs, and Hudson’s powerhouse performances of them, anchor the film. Viewers will walk out of the theater hungry for YouTube videos of live shows in the 60s and 70s. Both the improvisations with the studio band in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, in creating Franklin’s most famous hit and a complete performance of Amazing Grace are particularly memorable. These real-time musical finales and these studio scenes have both become hallmarks of the genre in recent years – looking at you, Bohemian Rhapsody — but are executed seamlessly here.

Directed by TV alum Liesl Tommy in her film debut, Respect is about as reverential as filmmaking gets. And while occasionally cliché, the script celebrates Franklin’s activism and her strength and resilience as a Black woman who was a victim of childhood trauma. Forest Whitaker, Marlon Wayans and Broadway legend Audra McDonald co-star. The most sensational supporting performance, though, belongs to Skye Dakota Turner, who plays the 10-year-old Aretha with a joy and panache that lights up the screen.

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Monday, August 9, 2021

Local Filmmaker and Musician To Release Short Film About Battling Cancer/Trauma

Posted By on Mon, Aug 9, 2021 at 11:59 AM

A scene from the short film Release. - COURTESY OF PAUL FRANCIS ZEGARAC
  • Courtesy of Paul Francis Zegarac
  • A scene from the short film Release.
Cleveland-based composer Paul Francis Zegarac makes free audio soundscapes for anyone to use. He also has released short vignette films that explain his musical project.

Now, he’s made Release, an original short film about a woman who meets with her family to bury the pet dog. The film is loosely based on his experience with cancer/trauma.

“Although times are dark, moments of laughter, play, and meditation bring in some light and hope,” reads a press release about the movie.

Zegarac wrote and directed the film and Katie Zegarac co-wrote it with him. Zegarac edited the film as well.

The film screens at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday on its Facebook page.

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Release from Paul Francis on Vimeo.

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