An Intimate Studio Space in NYC @ the historic home of Geraldine Page and Rip Torn

Speakeasy Cinema

 

WHAT IS SPEAKEASY CINEMA? WHY IS IT DIFFERENT FROM OTHER SCREENING SERIES?

If you’re new to this list, I created and hosted the independent and underground movie screening series Speakeasy Cinema. Between 2006 and 2009 it was housed at the Collective Unconscious and then Soho House. Every month Speakeasy Cinema featured at least one guest who choose an exciting, controversial movie they would like an audience to discuss. However, before the screening no one in the audience knew what they were coming to see. After the film was screened, the audience participated in conversation, with only one purpose: what did you see? What did it mean to you? How did it make you feel?

Guests included Tom Gilroy, Peter Mattai, Susan Buice and Arin Crumley, Jem Cohen, Norman Spinrad, Debra Eisenstadt, Josh Gilbert, Nelson Cabrera, Pedro Carvajal, Signe Baumane, Jonthan Stern, Robert Milazzo, Michael Badalucco, Joe Maggio, The Zuvuya Collective, Avram Ludwig, Ian Olds, Ira Sachs and Scott Saunders. Every single conversation they inspired was a success because the films they brought are off the beaten path and worthy of our time. We screened AMERICAN JOB, SONGS FROM THE SECOND FLOOR, BONE, BLOOD OF THE BEASTS and PSYCH-OUT, DAY OF THE LOCUSTS, “Films Rescued from Fire (of Chilian censors)”, TOGETHER (TILLSAMMANS), SECUESTRO EXPRESS, SEVENTEEN, TO BE OR NOT TO BE (1942 version), MICKY AND MAUDE, 13 TSAMETI, and “A Short Film About Killing” from Krzysztof Kieslowski’s DEKALOG,VIVA ZAPATA!, COME AND SEE, PSYCHOSYMBIOTAXIPLASM, and SOMETHING LIKE HAPPINESS. (Stesti). Many of our conversations took us out of the theater and into nearby bars and restaurants.

As attendees of any experience, our schedules have become more programed, our plans more specific to what we think we want or don’t want. Speakeasy Cinema returns becuase movies were also meant to be enjoyed as an intellectual and emotional surprise and with friends, lovers, family members, dates, strangers or even someone elses teenager.

Speakeasy Cinema has a few rules:

1) our guests bring a film and no one one knows what it is until the lights dim
2) the film can’t be a film the guests have worked on, only a film they love or hate, think is important, inspiring and w
ant to talk about
3) after the film, the audiences and the filmmakers share their experiences watching the film.
We talk about ART.
4) industr
y talk is verboten!
5) we can drink in this theater, so bring a bottle – we p
rovide the corkscrew
6) we do it the third Sunday
evening of each month
7) we don’t don’t show documentaries, what
ever documentaries are
8) no audio or video records of what went down.
What’s spoken about at Speakeasy Cinema LE stays at Speakeasy Cinema. END OF STORY.

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