As the Saturday night showing of The Great Dictator at the Redford Theatre on Sept. 26, 2009 wound down, I thought back over the fun of sponsoring this movie under the name of this web site. Usually I’m just a visitor, enjoying one show, along with some organ music and some tasty, inexpensive snack food. But this weekend, I was much more involved, and got to see the hard work and magic of the Redford unfold over three showings.
Archive for the ‘Redford Theatre’ Category
The vivid impressions of the big movie screen can magnify the impact of many things, including landscapes where the stirring emotions of human drama are played out. That was particularly true in recent Detroit Movie Palace showings of two famous outdoor adventures: The Searchers at the Michigan Theater on August 4, 2009, and Lawrence of Arabia at the Redford Theatre on August 9. 2009.
The Detroit Movie Palaces add so much variety to the experiences of area moviegoers that it’s extra fun when they create different ways to enjoy the same movie. That happened recently when the Michigan Theater and the Redford Theatre screened the 1964 children’s classic Mary Poppins.
Redford Theatre fans got a double dose of fun on Saturday, April 4, 2009. The anarchy and silliness of the Three Stooges was spiced with anticipation for a win by the Michigan State University men’s basketball team in the NCAA Final Four, taking place only a few miles away in downtown Detroit.
Towards the end of the Redford Theatre’s showing of Sunset Boulevard (1950) on Feb. 7, 2009, the images and the atmosphere combined to give me a deeper feeling for the significance of both the theater and the movie. Sunset Boulevard is a strange tribute to the silent movie era, thanks in part to the performances of two people who helped make the history of that era (Gloria Swanson and Erich Von Stroheim).
Most people’s favorite Christmas movies probably include the 1946 drama It’s a Wonderful Life and the 1954 musical White Christmas. On Dec. 20, 2008, I had the heartwarming privilege of seeing a big screen double feature of these two holiday classics at the Michigan Theater (It’s a Wonderful Life) and the Redford Theatre (White Christmas).
After a whirlwind of filmgoing that took me to all three of the Detroit Movie Palaces, I have many blessings to count in this season of Thanksgiving.
As I write this, my mind and emotions are reflecting on the enjoyment and the enrichment of: a family classic (The Wizard of Oz); a newly discovered barrel of fun (3 Ring Circus); a dramatic look at an Italian family (Days and Clouds); and two skillfully nuanced and emotionally gripping films (I’ve Loved You So Long and The Boy in the Striped Pajamas).
The year 1928 was an amazing year for motion picture theater construction in the Detroit and Ann Arbor areas. Movie palaces that opened that year include the Fox Theater in downtown Detroit, the Michigan Theater in downtown Ann Arbor, and two other still-existing theaters that I visited on July 26, 2008—the Redford Theatre and the Royal Oak Music Theatre. (Motor City Marquees, Stuart Galbraith IV)