Do you ever watch a movie about a terrible epidemic, or a television drama set in a hospital and wonder: would they really peel back Gwyneth Paltrow’s face like that? Could Dr. House actually get away with being that big of a jerk? Believe it or not, Hollywood actually does consult with doctors, scientists, and bioethicists to make sure they get things right. And many of those consultants make their home at Johns Hopkins.
It’s been quite a journey for the Senator Theatre, one of my favorite (and few remaining) old-style movie houses left in the Baltimore area. First, it kind of ran out of money; then, its previous owner really didn’t want to relinquish control; then, it was unclear who would take possession — and even if they’d keep showing films in the theater. But we can file all that aside in our “past drama” folders; the Senator is open once more after a year-and-a-half of renovations. And I couldn’t be happier.
Westminster native Brian Levin makes his feature film debut as writer and producer of the comedy Flock of Dudes next spring, and his journey into the entertainment industry should give ambitious prospective filmmakers encouragement: Talent, hard work and stick-to-it-tive-ness really do pay off.
After graduating from Towson University and getting his master’s degree at American University in D.C., the 1998 McDonogh School grad headed to New York. It was there that his online comedy show “The Post Show,” which he co-created with friends Bob Castrone (who he met at Towson) and Jason Zumwait (who he met in NY at a comedy show), got him noticed. (Click here to view some of the episodes.)
“That got our foot in the door in the film and television industry,” Levin says. A move to Los Angeles followed and since then he and his partners have written and produced television pilots and sold screenplays. Flock of Dudes is the first screenplay they’ve had in production, which Castrone directs and Levin produces.
Courtesy Bmore Media – The historic Pikes Diner & Crab House is one step closer to showing movies once again for the first time in nearly 30 years.
Ira Miller, the owner and operator of the Rotunda Cinemas in Hampden, will operate the new Pikesville theater and show films by the end of July. That’s according to Pikes Diner Owner Wil Reich, who says he is spending about $200,000 to renovate the building for theater use. The Cinema Bar and Grill is the name of the future combination movie theater and restaurant.
We at the Baltimore Fishbowl have lauded MONDO BALTIMORE in the past. The first Thursday of every month, these wonderful people find horrific movies for everyone to enjoy. In January, it was Vanilla Ice’s 1991 hit, “Cool as Ice,” and last month was a celebration of all things Mr. T. This month’s fearful film is entitled, “Hell Comes to Frogtown” – a 1987 cult classic that stars the wrestler, Roddy Piper, of 80’s WWE fame.
At first, I was skeptical. It’s hard to follow such inherently terrible films as “Cool as Ice” and “The Toughest Man in the World.” There’s so much hair gel, the pants are so high-waisted. I wasn’t sure that this movie with a B-list wrestler could be remotely as promising. I went to Wikipedia to make my final judgment call, and I am so glad I did. The plot synopsis, without giving away any spoilers, includes the following gems:
I realize that beginning any phrase with, “I remember when X cost Y…” immediately renders one old and crotchety. I’m going to go ahead and embrace that I may be old and crotchety then, because something that shocks me time and time again are the absurdly high prices of movie theater tickets. It should not cost me upwards of $12 to see a movie that only receives a smushed pile of green on Rotten Tomatoes. I didn’t ask for stadium seating, so please don’t make pay more for it.
The Charles Theater has always held a special place in my heart. Their Revival Series, like that time they showed some Hitchcock, alone makes me want to adorn them with accolades. Tonight, however, they’re doing something a little different. In conjunction with City Paper, all movies at the Charles are free after 6:00p. City Paper is footing the bill for the first 800 people who show up at the theater after 6:00p, to see whichever movie they choose that is being screened that evening. Not a bad way to spend a chilly Tuesday in January.
There are times when a movie is so horrific that it becomes nothing short of wonderful. A Night at the Roxbury, for instance, is such an awful piece of cinematic work that one cannot help but adore it. Will Ferrell and Chris Kattan in matching shiny suits head bopping to 1998’s finest club beats brings the dorkiest smile to one’s face.
Imagine my unbridled joy when I discovered MONDO BALTIMORE – where horrible cinema is not only revered, but rightfully praised. Every Thursday at The Windup Space on North Avenue, lovers of film failures assemble to absorb the atrocities. This week’s chosen masterpiece is “Cool as Ice,” a movie where, apparently, Vanilla Ice felt he should make his highly-anticipated screen debut. Rated a whopping 2.4 stars on IMDB, the plot synopsis reads, “A rap oriented re-make of “Rebel Without a Cause,” with heavy emphasis on the fact that rap star Vanilla Ice has assumed the James Dean role.” I’ve been assured that there are bad jackets aplenty and that Vanilla Ice attempts to woo an honors student. No worries, Vanilla Ice; you had me at, “Check out the hook while my DJ revolves it.”
The Windup Space
12 W North Ave
Thursday, January 3
7:00p – 10:00p
Because Vanilla Ice made a movie and terrible movies make us feel better about our smaller failures. At least we didn’t invest millions in a movie for lesser rappers.
If you happen to be walking down the boardwalk in Ocean City and spot what looks like Janet from The Rocky Horror Picture Show or the mom, Lorraine, from Back to the Future, it’s not a look-alike. Susan Sarandon and Lea Thompson are “down the ocean” filming Ping Pong Summer, a movie scheduled to be released next year. The film stars Sarandon and Thompson and also John Hannah and is directed and written by Michael Tully.
Sometimes the most interesting films come right out of our own backyard. I’m not talking about the multitude of shows and movies filmed here; I mean the ones written, produced and brought to life right here in Baltimore. It’s common knowledge that Baltimore has a wealth of artistic talent, so treat yourself to two hours this Monday night and for a mere $5, take a peek into the local film making process.
Creative Alliance has brought back Cine Salon, a collaborative film community where local filmmakers are invited to come screen their work-in-progress (max 15 minutes) for review, suggestions and discussion from the community.
Doors open at 7:00pm, workshop and screenings begin at 7:30pm, with drink specials all night! Free for Creative Alliance members. For more information, check out our events posting.
3134 Eastern Ave
Monday October 1, 2012
Doors open at 7:00pm