Q&A: Nitehawk & Tribeca Film Institute Summer Film Series

Back in July of 2014, Nitehawk got together with Tribeca Film Institute for a weeklong series highlighting some of our favorite documentaries to premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival. We had Q&A’s for every movie:  Director/Producer Justin Weinstein for An Honest Liar; Director Marshall Curry and subject Matt VanDyke for Point and Shoot; and directors Jennifer Grausman, Sam Cullman and Mark Becker for Art and Craft.

AN HONEST LIAR Q&A: Director/Producer Justin Weinstein

 POINT AND SHOOT Q&A: Director Marshall Curry and Matt VanDyke

ART AND CRAFT Q&A: Jennifer Grausman, Sam Cullman & Mark Becker

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Nitehawk Programmer Caryn Coleman Talks Feminism, Horror and the Final Girl on Bitch Media Podcast

This past weekend, our Senior Programmer Caryn Coleman (@caryn_coleman) popped up on Bitch Media’s Popaganda podcast to talk about the Final Girl trope we’ve dedicated our midnites and brunches to this October. Caryn talks feminism and horror movies, the films we chose and why, and what – after years of watching horror movies – still sends her hiding under the covers.

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Post No Bills: Halloween

Final Girl: Halloween (1978, John Carpenter)
Friday, October 10, Saturday, October 11 & Sunday, October 12; Midnite | Buy Tickets

The story of Halloween is a weird one. Michael Myers kills his parents as a boy and then as an adult, he tries to finish the job: first spending two movies going after his sister, Laurie, and then two movies going after his niece, Jamie. Then there’s a druid cult that uses Michael’s DNA to make babies to fulfill some sort of prophecy and then… screw it, let’s have him try to kill Laurie again. It’s been rebooted twice, Halloween. Impressive.

Below we’ve collected some high quality posters from the franchise from all over the world. Stand outs are a really odd Japanese Halloween poster where Michael has gigantic eyes, and –our personal favorite — the Italian Halloween 6 poster that just added some nudity to the original. Because, you know, Italians (more…)

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NAS: TIME IS ILLMATIC Q&A: Director One9 and Producer Erik Parker

Queens rapper Nas changed the game with his debut album Illmatic, which turns 20 this year, and already the record has gotten a fancy re-issue, tons of radio play — and now — a feature length documentary. The film itself isn’t so much VH1 music doc to the life of Nasir Jones, but rather the story of a family and a neighborhood, the hard environment that Nas synthesized into poetry.

Back in July, we screened NAS: TIME IS ILLMATIC to a sold out crowd, and the film’s production team of One9 and Erik Parker were there to field questions on how they tracked down Nas, the history of the Queensbridge Projects, and what material never quite made it to the final cut. Video is below. One love.

NAS: TIME IS ILLMATIC Q&A: Director One9 and Producer Erik Parker from Nitehawk Cinema on Vimeo.

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Q&A: Bennet Miller on THE CRUISE

On September 19, Nitehawk Cinema presented a special screening of Bennett Miller’s (Capote, Foxcatcher) documentary The Cruise as part of the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s New York Film Festival Opening Acts series. Following the screening was a Q&A with the Miller and Eugene Hernandez, Deputy Director of the Film Society.


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Stabby Scary Spooky Time: October at Nitehawk

dismember-splash2It’s October! Our favorite time of the year. The weather is just right, you get to wear all kinds of fancy new clothes, and you can binge on horror movies without any guilt whatsoever.

We have a whole slew of horror and more in store for you this month, including our massive series on horror’s most fearsome foe: the Final Girl. Also a special presentation of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford with Casey Affleck in house; a special screening of NY graffiti-doc Style Wars and a special 20th anniversary screening of Pulp Ficiton! Plus, out all-nite Halloween horror movie marathon: A Nite to Dismember! It’s all below. Bewaaarreeeee (more…)

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The Influence of Billy Wilder’s ACE IN THE HOLE


For many, legendary director Billy Wilder’s 1951 film Ace in the Hole is not only his best but also one of the most influential films of the last century. Unfortunately, despite its uncanny commentary on the news media that is still relevant today, it’s slightly under the radar for a lot of audiences. Because of it’s perfect mixture of brilliant filmmaking (from the cinematography to the writing to the acting, ah, Kurt Douglas) and a scathing look at the media’s influence to create a news frenzy, we’re excited to screen it here at Nitehawk this Tuesday as part of our Journalist in Film series with VICE News. But before you take our word for it, read what the likes of John Sayles, Martin Scorsese, and Chuck Bowen have to say about the film…

John Sayles (from THE DISSOLVE)
“It’s a really dark film, and it’s got Billy Wilder’s acidic view of human nature. I really reacted to the tawdriness of it, which you rarely really saw done well at the time. Kirk Douglas’ performance—one of the interesting things you see in Michael Douglas is that he’s one of the few lead actors who’s willing to play a heel, like in the Wall Street movies. And his father was the same way. Kirk Douglas could play a hero, but very often, he played a charismatic heel. You know from the start here that this guy’s too big for the world he’s landed in, and he’s going to be pretty ruthless. Film noir is a claustrophobic genre. There’s no escape in film noir. There’s a point in Miller’s Crossing where John Turturro’s character is under the gun, and he says, “Let me go, I’ll leave, I’ll go out of town,” and you wanna say, “There is no out of town in film noir! There’s only this closed system, so don’t believe him! There’s nowhere for him to go!”

With Ace In The Hole, there’s the claustrophobia of the mine, but really, the claustrophobia is in this closed, sleazy system of greedy people with their own agendas, and it’s going to end in tragedy. The only nice guy is the guy who’s trapped down at the bottom of the mine, and of course he doesn’t stand a chance if that’s the world he’s depending on to save his life.”

“This Billy Wilder film was so tough and brutal in its cynicism that it died a sudden death at the box office, and they re-released it under the title Big Carnival, which didn’t help. Chuck Tatum is a reporter who’s very modern–he’ll do anything to get the story, to make up the story! He risks not only his reputation, but also the life of this guy who’s trapped in the mine.”

Chuck Bowen (from SLATE MAGAZINE)
“Ace in the Hole appropriately opens in motion. Chuck Tatum (Kirk Douglas) doesn’t waste time. Consideration, nuance, empathy—words that are anathema to a man who prizes action and momentum. In a striking opening shot, we see a tow truck pulling a convertible behind it as it idles into a small western town. Tatum’s sitting behind the convertible’s steering wheel, though you wouldn’t guess from his cocksure expression that he’s out of work and in dire economic straits; for him, this truck is merely a substitute for the limo he’ll inevitably return to. The truck stops in front of the Albuquerque Sun-Bulletin‘s office, and Tatum marches in and gets himself a crummy newspaper job after launching into a series of double and triple entendres that establish him as a brilliant reporter who can’t work for anybody. Talent, after all, only means so much when you’re drunk or screwing your boss’s wife, though Tatum intends to prove that hunger, more so than even talent, trumps any setback or limitation.”…more

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Billy Wilder & the Eames Chair


Did you know that Billy Wilder (director of our Tuesday Journalists in Film screening of ACE IN THE HOLE) was pals with Charles & Ray Eames? So much so that they even designed a chair special for him…

“A man of my reputation simply can’t afford to have something that looks like a casting couch in his office,” Wilder said. “It’s too obvious a symbol of lechery.” Charles and Ray designed an 18″ wide leather and aluminum bench, large enough to sleep on but narrow enough to prevent long snoozes. Wilder would sleep with his arms crossed; As he sank into deeper sleep his arms would fall to his sides, gently and naturally waking him up. And it wasn’t lecherous at all, unless, Wilder quipped “you had a girlfriend shaped like a Giacometti, [then] it would be ideal.” via Core 77 


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Say Hello to Our New Fall Menu!


Like clockwork, the first cool, late summer breeze rolls through Brooklyn and everyone starts FREAKING OUT ABOUT FALL. Right now, it’s kind of an inter-season. A time when it’s chilly in the shade, so you dust off a jacket that’s too heavy, buy a pumpkin late and then march right out into the sun where it’s still 80 degrees. You may feel silly now, but rest assured, you won’t feel like the fool for long. It’s comin’, man. We’re already playing horror movies and coming up with new food. Fall is comin’ baby and it’s gonna be sweet.

Below we’ve put together a quick look at three new dishes from our fall menu, which is getting a head to toe revamp this weekend. New popcorn, new salads, new beers, new cocktails – the works. Check it out:


italian sausage, beef, sun-dried tomato marinara, gruyere, grilled bread
Espositos Italian Sausage and ground beef are mixed with egg and bread crumb, slow cooked in a marinara made with sun-dried tomatoes, red wine and sage. Three meatballs are baked with the marinara and topped with Gruyere cheese.

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Q&A: ROCKY Director John G. Avildsen

After we watched Rocky Balboa and Apollo Creed beat the snot out of one-another, we were delighted to host the film’s Oscar-winning director, John G. Avildsen, for a Q&A. Avildsen sat down with our own John Woods and discussed how they made the boxing look real (a 32-page “ballet” written by Stallone), and how some of the film’s best quiet moments came about because they were cheap to shoot.



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Post No Bills: King Kong

The Deuce: King Kong (1976)
Thursday, September 11; 9:30pm | Buy Tickets

A lot of things have been called the Eighth Wonder of the World: Natural Bridge in Virginia; the Terra cotta Army in China; Andre the Giant. Wondrous brutes they are, none can hold a candle to the true Eighth Wonder, Kong a fearsome gigantic ape with a soft spot for the ladies.

The eighty-year-old ape is the crowned King of both Skull Island and Manhattan; and over the course of his bizarre film history he’s done battle with dinosaurs, airplanes, military choppers, Godzilla and a robot version of himself named Mechani-Kong.

Below, we’ve put together a large collection of posters chronicling Kong’s history, from his King-making 1933 appearance through his bizarre trek to Japan and then back through the gutter of trashy ’70s Manhattan

King Kong (1933)kong 33 10 (more…)

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Kurt Fuller introduces WAYNE’S WORLD

Kurt Fuller is a That Guy actor, and he’s been one of our favorite Those Guys for years now. He has a funny That Guy role in Wayne’s World, playing Rob Lowe’s subservient assistant Russell, so when we got a tip that he would be in town the same weekend as our Brunch screening of Wayne’s World, we were stoked to have him introduce. In his intro, Fuller talks how Wayne’s World holds up, Rob Lowe’s hair and working with the fiercely competitive SNL crowd. He also shouts. It’s awesome.

Introduction: KURT FULLER INTRODUCES WAYNE’S WORLD from Nitehawk Cinema on Vimeo.

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Film and Culture Course: The Artist in Film

untitled-8Film and Culture Course
The Artist in Film
Course led by Reuben Lorch Miller

Saturdays | October 11 – November 15, 2014 | 12-3 pm

Nitehawk Cinema – Downstairs Bar/Cafe
136 Metropolitan Avenue, Brooklyn 11249 (Between Berry and Wythe Streets)


Class Description:
The Artist as a social archetype and mythological cultural character has been portrayed and reinvented numerous times in film. In this class we will be viewing films where The Artist is the central character of a fictional narrative. Through these varied examples, we will examine how this portrayal is often both stereotypical and prototypical. While it is sometimes treated skillfully, it can result in seemingly clichéd depictions. In some more recent films these clichés become the subject themselves. If the trope of The Artist serves as an important role in narrative cinematic storytelling, then what fantasies, fears and desires are expressed through this character? How has the depiction informed the cultural view of artists?

The limited yet typical depiction is often of a troubled, white man who is a frustrated and misunderstood visionary. He can be motivated by dark desires for love, acceptance and success or be crushed by the pressures of an adoring public while remaining psychologically isolated. Is he the irascible and haunted genius bent on self-destruction or the naive man-boy who is burdened by the double-edged curse of success, ambition and failure? He can be a truth-teller, an ego-driven narcissist or the outsider and rebel we all want to be. Sometimes, though very rarely, The Artist can be portrayed as a woman. Other characters that contribute to the construct of The Artist, such as The Muse and The Patron will also be investigated. Additionally, we will take note of the depictions of Artworks, The Studio, Urbanism (very often New York City) and Galleries. We will also consider the perspective of Art History contemporaneous with each film.

There will be a brief introduction to each film as well as time for discussion after. The films we will be watching are listed below:

Week 1 – 10/11: Scarlet Street 1945 (Fritz Lang dir.)
Week 2 – 10/18:  Hour of the Wolf 1968 (Ingmar Bergman dir.)
Week 3 – 10/25 at 12:15 pm: A Bucket of Blood 1958 (Roger Corman dir.)*
Week 4 – 11/1: F is for Fake 1975 (Orson Wells dir.)
Week 5 – 11/8: Life Lessons (from New York Stories) 1989 (Martin Scorsese dir.) Pecker 1998 (John Waters dir.)
Week 6 – 11/15: High Art 1998 (Lisa Cholodenko dir.)

*NOTE: A Bucket of Blood will be screened in the main theater on Saturday, October 25th at 12:15 pm as part of Nitehawk’s monthly Art Seen series. Class discussion will follow the screening.

Reuben Lorch-Miller is a Brooklyn based artist and educator. He has been a visiting artist and lecturer at many institutions including Stanford University, San Francisco Art Institute, The City College of New York and Pratt Institute.  He has also worked a museum educator at the Guggenheim Museum and The Studio Museum in Harlem. Last fall, he taught The Artist in Film course out of his studio in Greenpoint.

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Nitehawk ’94: September at Nitehawk

1994-trailerimageEvery year, we’ve taken a liking to peering back 20 years into the past to see what good stuff we find, and it’s always a treat. 1994, it turns out, was a good year…. well kind of. It was actually a rather ugly year: there was OJ, there as Tonya Harding, there was Newt Gingrich. Times were tough, but the movies? Choice. This month we’re dedicating both our Brunch and Midnite features to ’94, but we also have a great Nitehawk Nasty lined up, a pair of Music Driven features, and whole host of other stuff.

simpsCafe: Simpsons Club
Mondays; 10pm | Free
After a long Summer off drinking Skittlebrau alone, we’re bringing our weekly Simpsons Club back to the cafe. Starting on Labor Day, we’ll be heading back to the early seasons again, and pepper in some late season gems to keep things funky. Of course, we’ll still have original commercials, shorts and extras every week; plus, it’s free, so really there’s no excuse not to come out. I guess you could always just watch FXX, but… No! Wait! COME BACK

shallow1994: Shallow Grave (1994, Danny Boyle)
Friday, September 5 & Saturday, September 6; Midnite | 35mm | Buy Tickets
Danny Boyle’s feature-length debut, Shallow Grave, features baby faced Ewan McGreggor, Christopher Eccleston and Kiwi actress Kerry Fox as a group of flatmates whose friendship gets tested by a big ass box of dirty money. There’s a problem, though: they have to dispose of their new roommates corpse in order to keep it. Makin’ paper’s never easy, is it? (more…)

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