Thursday, June 17, 2010

Thursday Theatre Review: Film Forum

Weekly to a new feature here at Movies with Abe, Thursday Theatre Review. As a resident of one of the world’s foremost movie capitals, I’ve been to a number of movie theatres in New York City and have developed preferences. There’s no perfect theatre, but there are a few things that can make or break a movie-going experience. In no particular order, this is a guide to movie theatres in Manhattan.

Film Forum

Location: At 209 West Houston St in between 6th Ave and Varick St, it couldn’t be closer to a subway, right down the block from the 1 train and only a few blocks from the West 4th St A-B-C-D-E-F-V stop. As far as dinner and a movie is concerned, there are plenty of great restaurants nearby on 6th and 7th Ave.

Pricing: Tickets are currently $12 a pop, but if you’re a regular moviegoer at this theatre, become a member and get half price on every ticket! That’s a pretty great deal.

Film selection: Truly independent. If you’re not well tuned-in to the movie world, you won’t ever have heard of any of the films playing there. I’ve seen films like “Wendy and Lucy,” “Harvard Beats Yale 29-29,” and “Harlan: In the Shadow of Jew Suss” there. The theatre has been around for forty years, and also often shows restored classic films. Currently playing: “Breathless,” “Double Take,” “Metropolis,” and “Two in the Wave.”

Drawbacks: At least one of the auditoriums is constructed in such a way that sitting in a certain section will give you a fantastic view of a giant pole. The popcorn is also very tasteless.

Bonus features: The sliding scale of membership offers a number of cool benefits, like weekend reservation privileges and invitations to press screenings. If you can’t afford to drop $500-plus, the basic $75 membership will stick get you the discount tickets and a 20% discount on the theatre’s merchandise.

Worth the trip? If you want to see the film, then yes. While Landmark Sunshine films are often also playing at the Lincoln Plaza Cinemas and films at the Angelika are usually also at an AMC uptown, the movies showing at Film Forum cannot be found anywhere else. Just make sure to get there early so you don’t end up sitting behind the huge pole, and add some salt to the popcorn!

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