What Movies Are We Watching? Plus Repertory Film Chat

It’s February, so right now you’ve either got slush the studios are too embarrassed to release when audiences are paying attention, a couple of horror movies, an inexplicable huge action movie that probably should have been released in the spring or summer, and awards season offerings.

But wait… There are alternatives!

Repertory and ‘art house’ theaters are awesome places you can go to see something different and maybe even something older. Don’t just confine yourself to watching stuff at home, since seeing movies in a theater –especially older movies, even ones you’re familiar with- is a great experience, and not enough people take advantage of it. If you’re a student, you might even get discounted tickets!

Below is a listing of some great repertory and art house theaters I know of, and this list is up for expansion.

New York City (plus Queens and Brooklyn) – Film Forum, Museum of Modern Art, Anthology Film Archives, Film Society of Lincoln Center, IFC Center, Metrograph, Nitehawk, Alamo Drafthouse NYC, Museum of the Moving Image, Spectacle, Videology, BAMcinematek

And I have to mention the invaluable Screen Slate, which shows all of the repertory theater showtimes in the NYC area.

Westchester, NY – Jacob Burns Film Center, Alamo Drafthouse Yonkers

Rochester, NY - The Little Theatre

Chicago – Gene Siskel Film Center, The Music Box

Madison, WI –Cinematheque, The Marquee Cinema

Philadelphia – Bryn Mawr Film Institute, Landmark Theaters

Pittsburgh – Row House

Los Angeles – The Cinefamily, The New Beverly

San Francisco – The Castro Theatre, Roxie

Portland, OR – The Hollywood Theater

Seattle – Cinerama

Silver Spring, MD – AFI Silver

Minneapolis - Trylon

And internationally…
London - The Prince Charles Theater

There are also limited one-night-only national revivals of films through companies like Fathom Events.

I’d also recommend Filmstruck, a streaming service from the likes of Turner Classic Movies, The Criterion Collection, and Flicker Alley, which hosts a plethora of films that are conspicuously absent from other streaming services.

As for good movies in theaters right now; Hidden Figures, La La Land (though opinions vary wildly on that one), The Red Turtle, Elle (Trigger Warning), and Moonlight I feel are very much worth seeing. Like I said earlier, there’s a lot of prestige movies out at the moment, so now is the time to see them on the big screen.

So what are we watching folks? And what do you recommend others watch?


Alamo Drafthouse in Yonkers is my favorite place in the entire world to go to. Tons upon tons of local brews and a really cool staff. A+ recommendation for anyone in the NY/CT/NJ area, it’s worth the drive

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It turns out today is the 40th anniversary of the release of Dario Argento’s Suspiria in Italy. So with that in mind, now might be a great time to give it a watch!

Suspiria is an excellent example of Italian giallo horror films which would go on to influence American slasher horror. Unlike their American cousins, they are much more heavily stylized and, in the case of Suspiria, lean more toward the abstract.

Suspiria is a gorgeous horror film, it’s dripping with style and bright, shocking colors. It has some of the best shots in any horror film and it’s soundtrack, provided by prog rock band Goblin, is an absolute classic.

The American trailer is absolutely ridiculous but still very endearing, with an incredible (and nonsensical) tagline: “The only thing more terrifying than the last 12 minutes of Suspiria…are the first 92.”


Rochester, NY has The Little Theater. I haven’t been there in a couple years, because I am a philistine who loves popcorn movies, but I went a bunch in college when I was taking contemporary film electives. They show mostly documentaries, and like foreign dramas. They also have a really nice little cafe.

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Suspiria is quite a movie, and I still need to see it on the big screen. I did see Argento’s previous film Deep Red at MoMA recently and that was absolutely made better by seeing it in a theater. It was very clearly staged and composed to be seen on a big screen, and I imagine Suspria is too (just thinking of the scene where they have to sleep in the main hall and you see the shadowy figures behind them).

@kevlarSweaterVest Added to the list!

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i was more of a fan of Opera than Suspiria. Mostly because of the victim where the killer put needles around her eyes to prevent her from closing them. [because Argento wanted people to watch his movies and not close their eyes]

There’s a couple of small theaters around here that do a lot of indie films, but expensive. I’d rather just go to El Paso’s drafthouse instead. The atmosphere is awesome and I finally got to see Planet of the Apes [1968] on the big screen. I missed The Thing on the big screen because of work though :cry:

If anyone is in the Minneapolis/St. Paul, I’d strongly recommend checking out the Trylon Microcinema. They show a lot of arthouse and foreign, classics, and fun B-Movie type things. They also still show what they can on film, and their projectionist does a consistently great job. It’s a tiny theater but makes up for it in good choices and personality. I’m especially looking forward to their upcoming series of 60s Ingmar Bergman movies.

I’ll also second Moonlight being worth seeing in theaters, what a gorgeous film.

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I’m going to watch that new Ring movie tomorrow night because I love terrible trash: I also saw that new Underworld movie, also because I love trash.

and I also own a copy of the black-and-white version of Mad Max: Fury Road and it is categorically the way you’re supposed to see the movie. You can even rent it on Youtube if you can’t find a copy for some reason. Just… fuck me running, it’s Akira-Kurosawa-style black-and-white and several scenes, like the windstorm and the final confrontation are just stunning. The chrome even looks chromier.

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@tlarn I need to get the Black and Chrome edition. I love that George Miller just on a whim started looking at dailies for Fury Road in black and white and realized how well it worked, then put that version together.

@sconesaregood Added it to the list! They’re showing Persona this week, which is very much worth watching. Very disturbing at times though.

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This week The Handmaiden is available for $7 rental in HD on Amazon; very much worth watching, but be warned, it is quite sexually explicit and has some disturbing themes (it was never submitted for an MPAA rating for a reason). Also on Amazon video is Train to Busan, which you can get as a $5 rental. A zombie horror movie that is way, way better than it has any right to be.

New on Netflix is the classic 1991 documentary Paris is Buring, about the Harlem drag balls of the late 80s-early 90s.

In limited release in theaters this weekend is the highly-acclaimed documentary I Am Not Your Negro, which is nominated for Best Documentary at the Academy Awards.


I’m guessing a lot of folks are going to be seeing John Wick Chapter 2 this weekend (myself included), and I thought I’d ask you guys what some of your favorite action movies are, and any recent action movie discoveries you’d recommend.
(I’ll go ahead and recommend two Bruce Lee features I recently saw at MoMA: Fist of Fury and Enter the Dragon – great fun)

I’m updating the OP again with some more theaters. Those of you outside the US, what are some repertory or art house theaters near you or that you’ve visited and enjoyed?

I finished watching Drive recently after a very long spate of not watching movies and that was really damn good. Great use of thematic color and cinematography throughout, I’d definitely rate it highly for anyone who can stomach the violence.

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Drive is quite good, and Nicolas Winding Refn has done some other works of note, my personal favorite of which, Bronson, is on Netflix right now! Be warned, it has scenes of extreme brutality and a couple of very gross bits. It’s the true (albeit very exaggerated and stylized) story of a notorious prisoner who has now spent most of his adult life in solitary confinement due to his violent tendencies. Bronson was one of Tom Hardy’s first leading roles and he absolutely kills it. It’s one of these movies that under any other director and with any other actor, the structural concept (Bronson is literally on a stage in increasingly outlandish garb and make-up telling us his life story) would come off as laughable and the whole film would fall apart. Instead, it works brilliantly, and is alternately visceral, funny, and incredibly disturbing.

I’ve also got to throw in a recommendation for Drive. It’s such a fantastic deconstruction of the action hero. It’s absolutely gorgeous and I really like its commitment to having minimal dialogue. As far as Nicolas Winding Refn’s other work goes, I loved Neon Demon, which it seems may be a controversial opinion. It’s also gorgeous to look at, but I think it’s genuine horror moments are extremely effective.

It’s sort of an easy pick, but as far as action movies go, you can’t go wrong with Die Hard. I genuinely think it’s a practically perfect movie. As far as classics go, Terminator 2, Predator, and Total Recall are also extremely rad and basically the polar opposites of Die Hard.

It probably goes without saying that the first John Wick is absolutely incredible.

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I saw Neon Demon in theaters; it was literally just me, my friend, and two other folks in the audience. I really enjoyed it, although I thought the morgue scene was a little much. Nice little nods to Suspiria and Showgirls, plus a way way out of the ordinary performance from Keanu Reeves. Kind of baffled as to why it got such a negative reception. I think people are still mad at Only God Forgives, which to be fair was the most intentionally impenetrable and self-indulgent movie I think Refn could make, which is saying something.

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Speaking of colorful gory horror, The Music Box Theater in Chicago is showing Richard Stanley’s Hardware tonight at midnight using the director’s personal 35mm print! I’ve seen this one in 35mm (not sure if it was Stanely’s print) and it is a treat. Great soundtrack too!

Have a trailer!

I saw Neon Demon with a couple of friends and it was the three of us and like two other people. When you got to the scene at the end where they’re eating her it was like: WELP. And I’m not usually a squeamish person but the tension during those parts were super high and it was pretty amazing.

I just watched Battle for Sevastopol, which is about Lyudmila Pavlichenko, the woman sniper from Russia. I thought it was amazing.
And of course Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. All three movies are available on amazon prime for free :3

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I gotta say, out of all the movies coming out soon, the one I’m probably looking most forward to is Get Out, the horror movie made by Jordan Peele

I’m a huge Key and Peele fan to begin with, and seeing him do something a little more dramatic and tense gets me really excited

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Oh wait this is the movie that ripped off Shok and got sued by 2000AD, isn’t it?

It sure was! (At first I thought you were talking about Get Out and was very confused.) Its also featured in SmashTV’s amazing music movie mashup MEGAPLEX, posted below. Be warned, lots of intense strobe lighting, nudity, and gore.

@Bearpigman I am also looking forward to Get Out!

Oh shit, and I totally forgot to mention I saw John Wick Chapter 2. Its pretty good! One thing it has over the original is it knows how to immediately set up the tone of the film instead of just kind of veering into it. Packed theater too, and they were enjoying the hell out of it.