Living in LA, I find myself quite spoiled by the film options here - I probably could see a classic, foreign, or indie film every night of the week if I wanted. Though all those genres interest me, as a huge classic film fan, I realize I'm lucky to be able to sit in a theater and see classics on 35mm (or 8, 16, or even 28.5mm!). The options can prove difficult sometimes though - do I attend a screening of a newly restored underrated Hitchcock classic or indulge in an insane sounding lady-doctor-assumes-dead-woman's-identity flick that is, of course, playing on the same evening? Decisions, decisions! (That was a real life conundrum).
If tasked with a difficult choice regarding screenings, I generally choose the films that aren't available for purchase on DVD and are rarely shown, if at all, on TV (though both the movies referenced above, Shadow of a Doubt and Strange Impersonation, are on DVD or streaming). Sometimes these films run as part of a special retrospective or recent restorations showcase, but whatever the occasion, I've found myself attending as many of these screenings as I can before a friend will inevitably ask what I've been doing for a month - I have been known to trade a free trip to Disneyland for an afternoon watching a 1924 silent Ernst Lubitsch film. Since these outings are far from a normal trip to the cinema, I decided to share them with the internet.
how i got hooked
Apart from watching The Wizard of Oz a million times in my elementary school music class, my first brush with classic film was at the local Saturday Matinee store. Katharine Hepburn's eyelashes on the VHS cover of Holiday caught my attention and stopped me in my tracks. Is that how her eyelashes look in the film? Are those real? What's this all about? I was weirdly intrigued.
Another brush with Pride and Prejudice - this time in Blockbuster - sealed the deal. Do I watch the million hour A&E miniseries or 2 hour - heaven forbid - black and white 1940 version for my school project? Well, my 13-year-old aversion to black and white won out due to my limited attention span, and here we are.
You can't see it here, but Hepburn's eyelashes are unreal. And they started it all for me.
thanks for stopping by!
I See a Dark Theater is a website dedicated to classic movie-going—and loving—in the City of Angels. Whether it's coverage on screenings, special presentations, or Q&As around Los Angeles that you're looking for, or commentary on the wonderful and sometimes wacky world of classic cinema, you've come to the right place for a variety of pieces written with zeal, awe, and (occasionally) wit. Enjoy.