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A Rare 35mm Screening
Sam Spade was never spotted hanging tinsel from an evergreen bough, nor was Phillip Marlowe ever said to have visions of sugar plums. That’s because Film Noir, with its fixation on the dark and unseemly side of life, isn’t on the typical list of Christmastime movies. But this year, the Loew’s Jersey gives classic film fans a very special Holiday gift: a rare 35mm, BIG Screen presentation of an extraordinary – if untypical – Noir, set in a winter wonderland, that DOES seem to fit the season of light because though there is still loneliness, despair and even hatred in the story, there’s also -- almost uniquely so in the genre – the hope of redemption.
In “On Dangerous Ground,” Robert Ryan plays an embittered city cop who has lost hold of his soul after years of having to deal with the kind of toughs and crooks who are the staple of Film Noir. After causing his superiors grief by roughing up one too many suspects, he is literally sent packing, assigned to help find the killer of a young girl in a snow-covered countryside far from the city.
Ward Bond, one of the most legendary character actors of all time, is the father of the young victim, and makes no effort to disguise his rage over what happened to his daughter or his intent to shoot the killer himself as soon as he can. Ida Lupino, as always very effective in finding subtlety and complexity in her roles, is a blind woman whose warmth and courage not only allow her to overcome her own handicap, but also to care for her mentally ill brother.
This fine cast is a big part of the reason that what might have come off as a strained or hokey story line instead is both riveting and convincing. Another reason is the skill of auteur-director Nicholas Ray –perhaps best known for “Rebel Without A Cause” – in portraying wounded, grasping psyches on screen. And this unusual Noir also succeeds through the clever conceit of first embracing, and then upending one of the most familiar tenets of its genre: classic Noir is a creature of the city with an urban look and feel, right down to the ubiquitous flashing neon sign. It is precisely in such a setting that Ryan’s character has been relentlessly burned out as a cop and, even more fundamentally, a human being. But when he is literally exiled from the city and pushed out into the countryside, the arc of the story changes as drastically as the scenery, and reclamation seems possible. And lastly, as he did for so many other movies, including some of Hitchcock’s best, Bernard Hermann contributes an evocative score. In 35mm.
Admission: $8 for Adults, $6 for Seniors (65+) and Children (12 & younger).
A Concert on the Big Stage
AND a Favorite Movie on the Big Screen
Do you remember . . . long ago, when we were all kids, there was one Christmas-time when you went to a big old theatre downtown, the kind that looked like a palace, for a special holiday show. There was a concert of wonderful voices and music from one of the biggest pipe organs you’d ever seen or heard. Plus you got to sing along to some of the songs. And then you enjoyed a holiday movie on the theatre’s enormous screen.
No matter if this is one of your most cherished memories -- or a memory you only wished you had -- now you can re-live it! And bring your kids too!
ON STAGE -- Saturday, December 9 4:30 PM
Live Holiday Concert PLUS Sing-Along.
Some traditions are worth keeping. Enjoy the most cherished music of the season performed by Taresa Blunda and Howard Richman, accompanied by the power and majesty of the Loew’s extraordinary Wonder Morton pipe organ, played by Bernie Anderson.
PLUS -- relive a great old movie theatre tradition: an audience sing along with words projected on screen.
ON SCREEN -- Saturday, December 9 6PM
If Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" effectively captured Christmas in Victorian England, "Miracle On 34th Street" is the embodiment of Christmas in 20th Century America.
What, after all, could be more wonderfully familiar than a story that begins with the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, continues with a department store Santa trying to convince a skeptical little girl (and her mother), adds some corporate skullduggery, takes pokes at the legal system and the Post Office, even throws in some political machinations and a courtroom drama, and ends with the improbable triumph of an underdog? And if Dickens included a scathing rebuke of greed, "Miracle" adds in a not-too-subtle commentary on the advancing encroachment of crass commercialism. The film also benefits immensely from its New York City location footage, realistic sets, and just slightly understated tone – all of which makes it surprising easy to catch yourself believing the story as it unfolds. Top off all of this with a well-paced script and a great cast – and you get an absolutely wonderful movie. And for all the greeting cards, cola ads, Christmas pageants and TV shows that have featured him, Santa Claus has never had a better incarnation than this film's charming and dignified Kris Kringle.
There have been two attempts to remake "Miracle On 34th Street," but neither have captured the charm or earned the enduring fame of the first. But the original is much more than just a great movie. It has become a tradition of its own, something shared across generations, down the decades during the holiday season. It's a film for the ages, and for all ages. Come share and enjoy it on the Big Screen.
Admission for BOTH the Concert AND Movie
is just $12 for adults, $8 for kids (12 & under) & seniors.
For the 24th Holiday Season in a row, Santa Claus will hear holiday wishes and take photos with his many fans in the Grand Lobby of the Landmark Loew's Jersey Theatre.
Everyone is welcome - kids, the young at heart, even pets! (Pet owners are asked to come between 12PM and 1:30PM only so as to leave the first hour for children and parents with pet allergies.)
The visit is FREE!
A quality digital photo is only $5 -- OR, if you bring a new, unwrapped toy for a needy child, the photo will be free! (Donated toys will be distributed off-site by a local charitable service.)
[More about the Toy Drive: If you would like to help FOL collect toys for needy children, but can't make our Santa event, please call us at (201) 798-6055 and we'll find a convenient time to stop in at the Theatre to drop off your toy donation.]
This Visit Santa event is presented by Friends of the Loew's as a community service.