Hollywood Films About Addiction at the Reel Recovery Film Series with Special Guests
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The last date listed for Reel Recovery Film Series was Tuesday May 26, 2009 / 7:00pm Ivan's XTC.
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Featured review from LEO
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Barfly was/is fantastic. It's not available on DVD and I was excited to see it on a big-ish screen. The house was a packed crowd whose energy added to the experience of this should be classic. However, the doors didn't open until 7:30p.m. and there was a short film and discussion before Barfly, so the movie didn't start until after 8:30p.m. I was beginning to wonder if this was worth it, if I had made a mistake and if I should leave and cut my losses. My friend, who went with me, confided later that he was getting annoyed and a bit cranky too. Once the end credits for Barfly rolled, we did leave instead of sticking around for the film Q & A (which we were interested in because Roberta Bassin who played Lilly in the film was there) as well as the recovery discussion. We had been sitting in the old school seats for too long at that point. We were hungry and had no dinner because we thought doors were opening at 7p.m. and we didn't think we had time to hit up Damiano's for a slice or two. So we figured we could hold out for an hour in a half. Neither one of us are in recovery either, but it might have been interesting to check out. That being said, seeing Barfly again for at least the 4th time was awesome and getting there early afforded us with great seats too. For me, in the end, it was worth it. My friend who came with me also shares my opinion. He had never seen Barfly before but was glad he stuck it out and he loved the movie too. But I wouldn't want to go thru this every time to see a movie either.
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I've seen The Lost Weekend before and think it's a great movie and well done for its time. I've always wanted to see something at the Silent Movie Theater and thought this was the perfect opportunity. It started off great. They gave us free...continued
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the Reel Recovery series is great fun. Yes, there were a couple of moments when the audience spontaneously laughed but I didn't find that inexplicable or inappropriate. Free popcorn and cupcakes and good networking and socializing opportunities...continued
APRIL 7, 2009 PERMANENT MIDNIGHT with author Jerry Stahl presenting. Starring Ben Stiller. The film is based on Jerry Stahl’s autobiographical book of the same name, and tells the story of Stahl’s rise from a small-time television writer to his success as a comedy writer making up to $5,000 a week writing for 1980s shows like thirtysomething, Moonlighting, and probably most infamously, ALF (changed in the movie to Mr. Chompers). Maria Bello stars as Kitty, a fellow detox survivor to whom Stahl relates his rise and fall. The movie also stars Owen Wilson as Stahl’s friend and fellow addict, Nicky; Elizabeth Hurley as his wife, Sandra; Janeane Garofalo as a Hollywood agent, Jana.
APRIL 14, 2009 THE LOST WEEKEND Academy Awards for Best Film, Best Director, Best Actor, and Best Screenplay!
The Lost Weekend is a 1945 dramatic film directed by Billy Wilder and starring Ray Milland and Jane Wyman. The film was based on a novel of the same title by Charles R. Jackson about a writer who drinks heavily out of frustration over the accusation that he had an affair with one of his buddies while in college. The reference to the gay affair is removed in the film, and the main character’s descent into an alcoholic binge is blamed on personal frustration and more general doubts about his identity
APRIL 21, 2009 LEAVING LAS VEGAS Academy Award to Nicholas Cage for Best Actor. Nominated for Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress and Best Screenplay.
Leaving Las Vegas is a 1995 romantic drama film about a relationship between a suicidal alcoholic and a prostitute from Las Vegas, starring Nicolas Cage and Elisabeth Shue. Ben Sanderson is a late-stage alcoholic who has hit rock bottom. Trashing all personal and professional ties to his L.A. existence, he sets off for the lights of Vegas on a mission: to drink himself to death. There he meets Sera, a beautiful, seen-it-all hooker. From the moment Ben and Sera connect, they form a unique bond based upon unconditional acceptance and mutual respect that will change each of them forever. The film was directed and written by Mike Figgis, based on a semi-autobiographical novel by John O’Brien. Two weeks after the production of the film had started, O’Brien committed suicide. A halt of the project was considered, but work on the film was continued as a memorial of sorts.
APRIL 28, 2009 SID AND NANCY, with special invited guests. Sid and Nancy is a 1986 film directed by Alex Cox. The film materialized during a time of renewed interest in the period of punk rock, heroin addiction and specifically the life of Sid Vicious. It stars Gary Oldman as Vicious and Chloe Webb as his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen.
Oldman lost weight to play the emaciated Vicious by eating nothing but “steamed fish and lots of melon,” but was briefly hospitalized when he lost too much weight. Vicious’s mother also gave Oldman Vicious’ own trademark heavy metal chain and padlock to wear in the film.
MAY 5, 2009 DAYS OF WINE and ROSES Academy Award for Best Song. Nominated for Best Actor and Best Actress. Invited guests.
Days of Wine and Roses (1962) is a film directed by Blake Edwards with a screenplay by JP Miller adapted from his own critically acclaimed 1958 teleplay for Playhouse 90 of the same name (see: Days of Wine and Roses, 1958 TV drama). The movie was produced by Martin Manulis with Henry Mancini music, and features Jack Lemmon, Lee Remick, Charles Bickford and Jack Klugman.
The film depicts the insidious nature of addiction in modern life, following the downward spiral of two average Americans who succumb to alcoholism and attempt to deal with their problem.
MAY 12, 2009 LESS THAN ZERO Special invited guests.
Less Than Zero is a 1987 film loosely based on the novel of the same name by Bret Easton Ellis. It stars Andrew McCarthy as Clay, a college freshman returning home for Christmas to find his ex-girlfriend (Jami Gertz) has been having sex with his high school friend who is also a junkie (Robert Downey Jr.) and being hassled by his dealer (James Spader) to whom he owes money. The movie presents a look at the culture of wealthy youth in Los Angeles and has a strong anti-drug message
MAY 19, 2009 BARFLY Invited Guests.
Barfly is a 1987 film which is a semi-autobiography of poet Charles Bukowski during the time he spent drinking heavily in Los Angeles, California. The screenplay by Bukowski was commissioned by the French film director Barbet Schroeder – it was published, with illustrations by the author, in 1984 when film production was still pending.
Barfly stars Mickey Rourke and Faye Dunaway, with direction by Schroeder, and was presented by Francis Ford Coppola. The movie also features a silent cameo appearance by Bukowski himself.
MAY 26, 2009 IVAN’S XTC
Director Bernard Rose will present with special guests.
Ivans XTC (2000) is an independent film directed by Bernard Rose shot on digital camera about the last day in the life of LA agent Ivan Beckman, played by Danny Huston. It’s based on Leo Tolstoy’s novella The Death of Ivan Ilyich. The film also stars Peter Weller.