As the colors of the trees change and we’re in the mood for pumpkin pie and apple cider, the Halloween season begins. With it comes the prospect of watching terrible movies.
Throughout October, the Coolidge Corner Theater offers a variety of Halloween and horror-themed events. During Candy and Pumpkin Month, the Coolidge Corner Theater is a special place.
Walking towards the Coolidge around midnight, one can observe the vibrancy of pink and blue neon lights and the line of people waiting outside the theater. Along the lobby walls are framed posters of various midnight movies. Upon entering the showroom, the brightly painted walls and the large screen appear.
Mark Anastasio, director of special programming for Coolidge, said the theater will host a series of John Carpenter films throughout October. Carpenter films, such as “Halloween,” will air Fridays and Saturdays at Coolidge after midnight as well as during regular hours.
“We’re going to be releasing a 35mm of ‘They Live,’ which I think will be remembered more and more as an incredibly important film over time. This film, strangely and unfortunately, becomes more and more relevant over time. I thought it was important to put in front of the public during prime time. And of course John Carpenter’s ‘Halloween’ on Halloween night is a must,” Anastasio said.
Ethan Dexter went to see “Psycho” at the Coolidge Corner Theater on October 3.
“They usually have a good lineup, which is usually why I go there. I mean, it’s a really nice theater and I always love coming here,” Dexter said.
Between Oct. 21 and 23, the Coolidge will play drive-in movies ranging from “The Wolf Man” to “Beetlejuice,” at Medfield State Hospital. Coolidge Technical Director Nick Lazzaro said Coolidge Corner Theater orchestrates everything before screenings.
“You get the atmosphere and you get a really unique driving experience, and I can confirm the quality of that, because you have killer projection, and that’s the same quality people expect to go to the Coolidge but at the middle of the woods. So I think it’s worth it,” Lazzaro said.
Starting at midnight on October 30, the 13-hour Halloween Horror Movie Marathon will feature vampire films exclusively. There will also be a costume contest at the marathon.
“To make sure everyone gets to spend the night at the theater, watching vampire movies, we’ll have all sorts of vampire-related goodies and goodies for the public throughout the night,” Anastasio said.
Some of the Halloween Marathon movies are announced in advance, while the remaining movies are not revealed.
“It’s kind of fun, because it keeps people guessing, they don’t know what they’re going to get into. It’s kind of like walking into a funhouse, you know that at some point something can surprise you, but you’re there for the fun, you’re there for the ride,” Lazzaro said.
Besides “Dracula” and “Fright Night”, one of the known films for this year’s Halloween marathon will be “London After Midnight”, of which they will show a reconstructed version with live musical accompaniment.
“The only known copies of the film were destroyed in a 1960 fire in Universal Studios’ vault, but TCM [Turner Classic Movies] recreated it using stills from the movie, a script they had, and title cards that still exist in the movie,” Anastasio said. “And it’s only a presentation of about 35 minutes, but I think it will be the first time someone has done a live score for ‘London After Midnight’ probably since the 1950s and early 1990s. 60, so that’s pretty cool.”
Lazzaro said there were a number of reasons people should go to the Coolidge in October and Halloween.
“It’s like going to see your favorite band live, compared to if you saw it digitally, it’s still good and it’s fun, but there’s that life to seeing something on film for real,” Lazzaro said. “Quality rules at the Coolidge. I don’t mind, I don’t even think I’m bragging or bragging, I mean, it’s just that I sincerely believe this is a truly exceptional place.