June 2017: Monkey Biz, Heist Flicks, and a Wonderful Fuck You to Nazis of All Ages. Plus, Outdoor Movies! Dig In, Stockahz!

New York City's premiere resource for classic film screenings in the metropolitan area. Offering reviews, recommendations, venues and a host of links keeping classic film and the silver screens alive.

Hola, willkommen, bienvenue Stockahz! Or as Agent Cooper might have it, hel-LOOO-oooo!!! Happy to be back, once more in the engineer's seat rather than laying track in front of a train at full speed. And while that image may seem a pleasant one to some of you in a Buster Keaton/Wallace & Gromit type fashion, believe me, it's no fun. Various factors emerged over the last few months to hinder, if not out-and-out wreck the best intentions of this site; to provide the monthly calendar on the 1st, to provide a monthly overview on the first Friday, and to provide weekly Picks as well as updates as the venue skeds change. Hopefully we're firmly back on track now, as I'm glad to present a fully loaded calendar that includes the year's first outdoor screenings
, and will be providing additonal info about updates as they emerge.

Also, I'm not one to seek a pat on the back or anything like that, but this month does mark the 5 year anniversary of this site's initiation. Flew by, kids, as I'm sure it did for some of you. Should you be new to this page, or wanna take a trip through nostalgiaville, you can read the very first missive right here, if only to see how the site's evolved from it's mewling beginnings. We didn't have the interactive calendar yet, but it was in the works and would appear that August. I have to say it's been an honor to oversee this site, and I couldn't have done it or continue to do it without the help and support of 3 very important people; Adam Honen, Ingrid Montealegre, and co-conspirator Michael Davis. They've stuck with me from the beginning only because they wanted to see me make it happen. Well, they thought there might be some dough in the proposition as well, and so did I. But really, it's been a labor of love and it continues to be. Plus, maybe some dough.

I also have to thank certain people that I've come to know through the work I've done here, who've become great friends and priceless sources of support and cheer, chief amongst these are Pamela Fallon Thornley, Aurora Desmond, Joel Williams, Alan Hait, and the Old Movie Weirdo himself, Mr. Will McKinley. One of my chief goals was to make new movie pals through Nitrate Stock. Mission accomplished. And then some.

I've always been a participant n the NYC rep film circuit, ad when it hit something of a lull in the noughts, I remained convinced that the sudiences were still there, and they'd come back if the programming did. It's been a joy to go from participant to active hunter/seeker (AGAIN with the Lynch refs!) on the scene, and to watch the scene blow up all over again. We're in the midst of a golden period right now, with stalwarts like Moving Image and BAM and MoMA joinin forces with new blood like Metrograph, the newly-reopened Quad, and of course, my beloved Nitehawk Cinema. My thanks to all the publicists and programmers responsible for his ressurection. And a special shout to theman and venue who bridged the gap from the heyday of the 8th Street Playhouse and the Bleecker Street Cinema til this current boom; one Bruce Goldstein, who has served as chief repertory programmer since Film Forum first opened at its current location waaaaaaaay back in 1991. I always intended this venture serve as the film school I never attended. My thanks to all the above, and so many more I haven't named, for the education. It's been my privilege.

And to all those who've come to rely on this site for easy accurate access to the city's rep circuit sked, my thanks, and my guarantee that it may not always be an esy ride, but I'll never stop steering. It's been a wonderful 1st five years. Here's to the next.


Okay, now to the goods. Those of you who routinely peruse this site's wares, y'know, the good ones out there, you know I like to confer a special designation on each month's most unmissable screening or series that I like to call the Big Dawg. It's ben an intermittent prospect these last few months but I'm fully reinstating it right now. The Daily Growl this June '17 goes to, who else, the aforementioned Film Forum for it's essential retrospective "The Lubitsch Touch". A comprehensive overview of one of the greatest and most influential filmmakers who ever traipsed the planet, it covers the earlier silent gems he crafted abroad, like 1919's THE OYSTER PRINCESS and 1921's THE MOUNTAIN CAT, his intertitled work for Paramount like THE MARRIAGE CIRCLE and THE SMILING LIEUTENANT , to his most-well known works from the sound era, where he effortlessly shifted from the filmed word to the spoken one without losing a jot of the wit, whismy, sophistication and boundary push of his silent work, in films like DESIGN FOR LIVING, TROUBLE IN PARADISE, NINOTCHKA, THE SHOP AROUND THE CORNER, and what I argue is his absolute masterpiece, 1942's TO BE OR NOT TO BE, Carole Lombard's last film and Jack Benny's only good one. In between we get other gems like LADY WINDERMERE'S FAN with Ronald Colman, ANGEL with Marlene Dietrich, and the Barrymores, John and Lionel respectively, in a Forum two-fer: 1929's ETERNAL LOVE ans 1931's BROKEN LULLABY. This is an excellent opportunity to span the work of one of cinema's greatest artists, the man who inspired none other than the great Billy Wilder to hang a sign over the door to his office that read "What Would Lubitsch Do?" Runs from the 2nd til the 15th.


Also at the Forum this month is Vittorio de Sica's "lost film", 1963's IL BOOM, a farce set amidst Italy's economic surge in the postwar era, which is granted its first long run in the US after only sporadic screenings these last 50+ years. Fred Zinnemann's HIGH NOON gets a one-off Sunday June 18th. Jacques Becker's prsion escape masterpiece LE TROU screens in a new 4K spitshine from the 28th til July 4th. And the hook-'em-while-they're-young Film Forum Jr. brings us Michael Ritchie's THE BAD NEWS BEARS, Robert Wise's THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, David Lean's GREAT EXPECTATIONS, and Charles Walters' SUMMER STOCK. All screenings Sundays at 11am. Film Forum is located at 209 West Houston St. in downtown Manhattan.


Riding the positive waves baby up to midtown Manhattan we groove safely into MoMA, who offer up a wonderful spotlight on a special talent from the studio era. Becoming Jennifer Jones is the latest entry in their wonderful Modern Matinees series, and it kicks off with an appearance in DICK TRACY'S G-MEN, a serial cobble in which she appears as herself, Phyllis Isley, and then fully joining her meteoric rise in films like breakout THE SONG OF BERNADETTE, the since-reappraised but still truly awful DUEL IN THE SUN, the wary, dreamlike PORTRAIT OF JENNIE, the Archers effort GONE TO EARTH, and of course, Irwin Allen's THE TOWERING INFERNO. Because retirement fund. Jones is a talent I routinely feel in need of championing, her status seemingly 2nd tier, and amongst those aware of her career somewhat misjudged as Selznick's "girl". Take some time this month to acquaint or reacquaint yourself with a magnificent screen icon. Runs from the 2nd thru the 30th.

Also at MoMA this month is a weeklong run of the recently restored THE LAW, Jules Dassin's 3rd effort form shores abroad, as he film-by-film told McCarthy and the Hollywood Blacklist to go fuck themselves. Gina Lollobrigida, Marcello Mastroianni, and future Mrs. Dassin Melina Mercouri co-star in this noirish tale of lust both universal and local. Any Dassin is worth your 2 hours. MoMA is located at 11 W 53rd St. in midtown Manhattan.


Two of our newest venues have some keenly intriguing sreenings in store for us this month: the LES' Metrograph, which recently celebrated its 1st anniversary, continues its diverse Welcome to Metrograph: A to Z series, one founded on no more than its programmers' whims, and every bit as rewarding as that prospect sounds. Upcoming goodies in the series include Budd Boetticher's SEVEN MEN FROM NOW, William Friedkin's SORCERER, and Ivan Reitman's STRIPES. So, y'know, they're up to the letter S in that whole A to Z biz. And Metrograph also kicks off the second pahse of their comprehensive overview of a French film legend, appropriately titled Bresson II. I'm into the whole brevity thing. Titles in the series include masterowrks like 1951's DIARY OF A COUNTRY PRIEST, 1962's THE TRIAL OF JOAN OF ARC, and Robert Bresson's final film, 1983's L'ARGENT. The latter series runs from the 7th til the 12th. The former is ongoing. Magnificently so. Metrograph is located at #7 Ludlow St. just north of Canal in Manhattan's lower east side.


Our freshly reborn Quad Cinema is no less busy, offering a Sam Elliott trib on the weekend of the 7th, with screenigns of Petey Bogz's MASK in its director's cut, the head-scratchingly beloved ROADHOUSE, and the sorely underseen SHAKEDOWN, which paired the slow drawl with human textbook Peter Weller, perfectly might I add; something called The Shadowy Cinema of the American 70's, bringing us underappreciated gems like Floyd Mutrux's AMERICAN HOT WAX, Robert Culp's Walter Hill-scripted HICKEY & BOGGS, and Irving Kershner's John Carpenter-scripted THE EYES OF LAURA MARS, running from the 9th thru the 13th; and their newly born trad, Two For Tuesdays, which this month brings us Ossie Davis' COTTON COMES TO HARLEM and Mark Warren's COME BACK, CHARLESTON BLUE, both based on pioneering crime author Chester Himes, unspooling on the 13th. The Quad Cinema is located at 34 W 13th St. in Greenwich Village.


Stone-skippin' across the pond into that most prized zip code the world entire, the incredibly exclusive Astoria, Queens, we find ourselves at that most essential temple to all images in motion, the Museum of the Moving Image, who this month offers up a new subject for their winning See it Big! series, a choice wholly appropriate for the summer season. None other than Steven Spielberg, who many would argue invented the modern summer movie season, is feted with screenings of 1971's DUEL, 1975's JAWS, 1979's 1941, 1981's RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK, 1982's E.T. and POLTERGEIST, 1985's THE COLOR PURPLE, 1987's EMPIRE OF THE SUN, and 1989's ALWAYS. That's some slate, and it runs from the 3rd of June thru July 16th. Moving Image is located 36-01 35th avenue in yeah you already know.


That's all for now, Stockahz. Check back as I'll be updating this article over the next few days in order to craft a complete overview of the month's doings on NYC's rep film scene! If you'll be patient with me, I'm going to return tomorrow with even more coverage of the NYC rep film scene. I'll go into more detail about the usual sterling programming at the Nitehawk Cinema, the IFC Center, and the Tarrytown Music Hall. And OH, did I mention outdor screenings? Check back, I'll have more details, and as always, stick wit me Stockahz!


- JW