March 30, 1995

Circle of Friends

Quality Irish chick flick (I saw it again on August 9).

March 29, 1995

25, 26, 27: The History of My Compact Discs

Like a band who releases a "Greatest Hits" collection with only two albums' wirth of music, perhaps this was an idea whose time had not come yet. I created a three-cassette series collecting music from CDs over the previous 9 years. By focusing so closely on such short time periods, I ended up capturing particular memories well.

Mix 25 - Compact Discs: The Early Years 1987-1989; 90 minutes

Mix 26 - Compact Discs: The Emerson College Years 1990-1992; 60 minutes

Mix 27 - Compact Discs: The WFNX Years 1993-1994; 90 minutes

March 27, 1995

Lawrence of Arabia

I took my Mom with me to the Wang Center, as she always told me how much she loved this film as a kid. Breathtaking on the big screen. Seeing it projected on an enormous screen made me realize this movie would be unwatchable on TV. I appreciated that the film opens with the 1935 motorcycle crash which killed Lawrence: This allows the moviegoer to watch the movie assured that nothing they see in the following three hours will kill Lawrence.

March 26, 1995

Bye Bye Love

A boring, pointless divorced-dad comedy. It's entries like this that make me wonder about my low standards? Maybe at age 23 I did not yet understand that I did not have to do everything my television told me to do. Notice that the next day I went to see one of the best movies ever made...

March 25, 1995

Dolores Claiborne

Incredibly depressing, but Kathy Bates is always good. Based on a Stephen King novel which I did not read.

March 22, 1995

Heavenly Creatures

Two teenage girls and their surreal Kiwi adventures. From director Peter Jackson (The Lord of the Rings).

March 20, 1995

Jaws

One of my all-time favorite movies, on the biggest screen in New England, at the Wang Center, with Laurie Michaelson.
Quint: Y'all know me. Know how I earn a livin'. I'll catch this bird for you, but it ain't gonna be easy. Bad fish. Not like going down to the pond and chasing bluegills and tommycocks. This shark, swallow you whole. Little shakin', little tenderizin', down you go. And we gotta do it quick, that'll bring back your tourists, put all your businesses on a payin' basis. But it's not gonna be pleasant. I value my neck a lot more than three thousand bucks, Chief. I'll find him for three, but I'll catch him, and kill him, for ten. But you've gotta make up your minds. If you want to stay alive, then ante up. If you want to play it cheap, be on welfare the whole winter. I don't want no volunteers, I don't want no mates, there's too many captains on this island. Ten thousand dollars for me by myself. For that you get the head, the tail, the whole damn thing.



March 19, 1995

Little Women

I have not read the book, but the movie was OK.

March 15, 1995

Hideaway

Terrible movie, based on a Dean Koontz novel. Check out this outline: Hatch Harrison (Jeff Goldblum) has a terrible car accident. He dies for more than two hours, but Dr. Nyebern (Alfred Molina) successfully brings him back to life. Harrison has some weird premonitions and becomes able to see through the eyes of a psychopath serial killer: Vassago (the squirrely Jeremy Sisto), killed his own mother and sister, and committed suicide, but was also brought back from death. When Harrison foresees that Vassago is trying to capture his daughter (Alicia Silverstone), Hatch tries to find the criminal first. (Fresh Pond)

March 5, 1995

Billy Madison

I was dragged to see this, at the Capitol in Arlington.

March 1, 1995

Church Street, Harvard Square, Cambridge MA 02138

The theater where Bruce Springsteen once performed (which inspired the quote "I have seen rock 'n roll future, and its name is Bruce Springsteen") was long ago chopped up into 5 movie screens:
  • Auditorium 1 is the original "orchestra" section of the theater. The screen is big and the seating average.
  • Screens 2 and 3 is the steeply raked "balcony" of the original theater, split into two adequate screens. The seating is completely unsatisfactory for a 6'2" gentleman theatergoer such as myself, especially at a sold-out screening, like the Hugo debacle in January 2012.
  • Screens 4 and 5 are the stage and flyloft of the original theater. These "theaters" are shaped like saltines boxes. They're only suitable for children, sadists, and the criminally insane.
There's the gamble: Harvard Square was very convenient, and the clientele was much more reliable than West Newton, for example. But there was a 40% chance of a completely unacceptable moviegoing experience, and only a 20% chance of satisfaction...and that's not even factoring the quality of the movie into the equation.

AMC Theaters closed the Church Street Theater in the summer of 2012, and I believe the space is still vacant in 2015?

Starting in the late 80s/early 90s, I saw dozens of movies at this theater, which operated under several names, including Sony, Loews, and AMC.

Church Street Trivia:

  • First Movie: A midnight screening of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, circa 1990
  • Last Movie: The Hunger Games, March 2012
  • Best Movie: Master & Commander, but Braveheart and The Usual Suspects are tied for second.
  • Worst Movie: The Producers (musical remake, 2005) was bad; Full Frontal was just forgettable
  • Oscars: Around 8 or 9 Best Picture nominees
  • Musicals: Surprisingly a lot of musicals and nearly-musicals: Two very different musical biopics- Backbeat and Immortal BelovedThe Producers, Team America: World Police (fuck yeah!), The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Down With Love (sort of), The Nightmare Before Christmas, and Forgetting Sarah Marshall (vampire puppets only). My wife saw Dreamgirls here while I saw The Good German in another theater- after my movie was over, I snuck into her screening just in time to watch the Dreamgirls closing credits.
  • No Spoilers: I memorably saw The Crying Game and The Usual Suspects here without knowing the twist surprises in advance.
  • A Martin Scorsese Movie: The Aviator and Hugo
  • Directed by Steven Soderbergh: The Good German and Full Frontal
  • Starring Harvard Square As Itself: I saw The Social Network here; uncanny to watch this movie with Mark Zuckerberg's character practically walking past the very theater we were sitting in.

Mostly Complete List
BalconyOrchestraStage or Fly LoftI've Forgotten Which
Backbeat, Gosford Park, Love Actually, The Crying Game, The Producers (2005), The Usual Suspects, Hugo, Team America: World Police Braveheart, Good Night and Good Luck, Master & Commander, Natural Born Killers, Sleepless In Seattle, The Aviator, It's Complicated, The Rum Diary, No Strings Attached, The Hunger Games, The Social Network, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show Down With Love, The Good German, Lost In Translation, and The Wild Bunch A History Of Violence, Full Frontal, Immortal Beloved, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Sexy Beast, Sex Drugs Rock & Roll, The Golden Bowl, The Thin Red Line, and Forgetting Sarah Marshall

The Wild Bunch: Restored Version

I don't know exactly when I saw this restored edition of The Wild Bunch. This edition debuted in the US in March 2005, so that's the date I included. I don't recall a lot about the movie, except for its violence, and the use of the "paint" blood, that especially phony blood substitute which was used by special effects artists in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Other famous movies to use this phony-looking blood include The Godfather (when Don Corleone is shot) and The French Connection (when Popeye shoots the Frenchie on the subway stairs).

Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs

Pulp Fiction (for the sixth time), double - featured with Reservoir Dogs, with my friend Mike, at the Brattle Theater.