The 85th birthday is approaching for the Redford Theatre, the Michigan Theater, and the auditorium of the Detroit Institute of Arts that hosts the Detroit Film Theatre. All three theaters have taken on ambitious renewal projects that will make them more user-friendly, a term that probably wasn’t used when the buildings opened in 1927 and 1928.
Archive for the ‘Redford Theatre’ Category
Visitors to the Redford Theatre on the evening of April 21, 2012 looked forward to a special night of silent film enjoyment starring the famous Mary Pickford in the 1920 movie Suds. Much of that enjoyment would come from the musical accompaniment by Dave Calendine on the Barton Theatre Pipe Organ that was in the Redford when it opened in 1928.
Many movie buffs consider 1939 to be Hollywood’s greatest year, with releases like Gone with the Wind, Stagecoach, and Wizard of Oz. But 1940 wasn’t too bad either, and in 2011, visitors to the Detroit Movie Palaces enjoyed some of the highlights of that release year.
Popular culture is an important part of our lives. Something in an old movie or TV show might connect you with someone of your generation or maybe another. It might take you back to when you were younger. It might relate to something ordinary, like a funny event in your family that reminds you of The Brady Bunch.
The Michigan Theater and the Redford Theatre recently hosted personal appearances that demonstrated the emotional power of pop culture.
A visit to the movies usually means about 90-120 minutes of a fictional story involving human beings playing characters other than themselves.
I took a break from that routine on Saturday, October 1, 2011, when I took in a unique double feature at the Detroit Film Theatre and the Redford Theatre. The DFT showed a gritty documentary about street life, while the Redford screened a collection of old cartoons.
When you think of Mexican movies, you might think of dusty roads, adobe dwellings, mariachi music, and dramatically expressed passions. The Redford Theatre and Detroit Film Theatre recently gave their patrons a look at films based in Mexico, from two different perspectives.
Much of the 1980s is now more than a quarter century ago. Movies from that time can now carry layers of significance that weren’t possible when the films were first released. The Redford Theatre recently screened two films from the early 1980s that sent me and probably many other filmgoers on interesting trips down memory lane.
You could see it in their faces, in their actions, in their words. It didn’t matter if they were in the sweltering confines of the Burmese jungle, or in the vast emptiness of the drought-stricken American West. They were all on demanding journeys in which they were pushed to the limit—physically, mentally, emotionally. And somewhere along their tragic journey, they were in search of that basic human need—dignity.
About 2/3 of the way through the Redford Theatre’s screening of the 1940 Alfred Hitchcock mystery Rebecca on May 28, 2011, I started thinking about how hard it is for one artist to lay claim to a story. At that point in the movie, at the costume party, the book and movie versions of the story of Rebecca veered off in significantly different directions.