May 13, 2013
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Movies at the Library returns next week with lineup of classics
Movies at the Library will reopen in the newly renovated lower level of the Shelter Island Public Library on Tuesday, October 2 at 7 p.m. The premier selection is “The Horse’s Mouth,” the rousing story of artist Gully Jimson, the irrepressible hero of the Joyce Cary novel. The incomparable Alec Guinness stars as Jimson and is also the Oscar-nominated screenwriter, bringing to life an artist who is heartbroken when his style falls from popular grace. Sharing the screen are Kay Walsh, Robert Coote and Michael Gough.
In observance of the U.S. election season, the Movies Committee has selected a duo of brilliant political movies, one very well known and one more obscure.
The first of these on October 16 is “Wag the Dog” starring Robert DeNiro and Dustin Hoffman and directed by Barry Levinson. A comedy about a serious matter, it was co-written by David Mamet and tells what happens when a spin-doctor is enlisted to try to avert a scandal. William H. Macy, Willie Nelson and Woody Harrelson are featured.
The better known of the duo is Robert Redford’s “The Candidate,” which will be screened on October 30. Redford plays California lawyer Bill McKay, a fighter for the little man whose integrity and charisma bring him to the attention of California Democrats. They persuade him to run for the U.S. Senate with compelling results. It is an unforgettable picture of a campaign that is now all too familiar.
To lighten the atmosphere, the next feature on November 13 is a little British gem starring Judi Dench and Bob Hoskins titled “Mrs. Henderson Presents.” Directed by Stephen Frears, it is based on the true story of widowed Laura Henderson who impulsively buys the derelict Windmill Theatre in London’s West End and convinces impresario Vivian Van Damm to run it. It is a challenging time between the wars and they are an odd couple. Disaster looms but neither will give up and they achieve an unusual success.
On November 27, “The Official Story,” winner of the Best Foreign Language Film of 1986, will be shown. Ten years earlier, “the dirty war” in Argentina began and the film chronicles a mother’s search for the parents of her adopted daughter. Did they disappear with many others during that war or are they still in Buenos Aires, waiting for their daughter’s return? It is based on real political events that the leading actress, Norma Aleandro, survived.
Last in the fall series on December 11 is one of the most rollicking and enjoyable films of the 1980s. It is “My Favorite Year” with Peter O’Toole as Alan Swann, an Errol Flynn-type actor and the idol of Benjy Stone, played by Mark Linn-Baker. Stone is a writer for a variety show and he is thrilled when Swann is booked as a guest. But nothing turns out as he expects. This is the only film that actor Richard Benjamin ever directed and he assembled a worthy supporting cast: Joseph Bologna, Cameron Mitchell, Lainie Kazan, Lou Jacoby and Bill Macy.
So mark the dates on your calendars and join Shelter Island movie lovers for bottled water and popcorn. See you at the movies!