Thursday, April 30, 2009
The Orpheum's Summer Movie Series is a Memphis tradition. Every year, the Theatre shows classics on its giant screen. It's a throwback to the era when the Orpheum was Malco's flagship movie theatre. From 1940 to 1975, the Orpheum screened first run movies. The Theatre closed when Malco decided they should follow the population trend. Memphians were moving East and Malco built the Ridgeway Four to serve as it's new flagship. Malco has theatres all over the region now, but I would say that The Paradiso is their flagship. It's interesting that the population has pushed way beyond the 240 loop (to the point that we are now constructing another outer loop) yet the pride of Malco is now west of its 1960s flagship. I guess it was important for them to keep it in Memphis.
Back to the Series. In the sweltering summer heat, it's always great to sit in a nice cool movie theatre for a couple hours. The Summer Movie Series is appealing because you get to sit in the air-conditioned Orpheum, watch a film as it was orignially meant to be seen- none of those, it has been formatted to fit your screen disclaimers, and it's afforable. Summer Movie Series tickets are just $6 for adults and $5 for seniors and children under 12. This year, I think Jaws is one that will provide a different experience for those of us who have only seen it on a 27" TV.
The first movie I saw at the Orpheum was Easy Rider when I was 14. I loved the film and Jack Nicholson's performance. It's unbelievable. I ended up wacthing all of his films as a result. I also snatched a "Solid Rock 92.9 WMFS!" t-shirt thrown to the crowd that night. This year, Easy Rider is back on July 17!
Other than a few exceptions, movies will begin at 7:15pm on Friday nights. There is also a Chick Flick series with movies starting at 7:15pm on Thursday nights. Tickets go on-sale two hours before the movie starts. Cash only. Drinks and snacks are available at the Theatre. Full movie details will be up on orpheum-memphis.com soon.
A couple of other interesting things about this year's Series:
On May 28, the Disney classic Swiss Family Robinson will be shown on a special Thursday Family Night. Admission is a 50 cent donation to the Theare's ARTreach education program.
Sunday, August 9- The Orpheum teams with EPE to bring you Blue Hawaii featuring The King. It will be screened at 6pm as part of Elvis Tribute Week festivities.
August 21 is Paul Newman Tribute Night. There is a Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and Cool Hand Luke double feature to honor the late screen legend.
As always, costumes and audience participation are encouraged at Rocky Horror!
The complete list:
May 22---Breakfast at Tiffany’s
May 28---Swiss Family Robinson
May 29---Young Frankenstein
June 19---Animal House
July 17---Easy Rider
August 9---Blue Hawaii
August 14---Wizard of Oz
August 21---Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid/Cool Hand Luke
August 28---Gone With the Wind
September 4--- The Rocky Horror Picture Show
June 11--- Sex and the City
July 23--- The Way We Were
August 6--- Funny Girl
August 7---Mamma Mia
August 20---Fried Green Tomatoes