Sag Harbor Cinema (SHC) will conclude its Here Comes the Cinema series with Joe Dante’s Matinee on Sunday, February 23 at 2 p.m. The screening at Pierson High School in Sag Harbor will be followed by a conversation with Dave Kehr, a curator in the Museum of Modern Art’s Department of Film.
The satire, which is set in 1962, takes aim at Cold War fever. John Goodman stars as Lawrence Woosley, a low-budget filmmaker who visits Key West, Florida for an advanced screening of his latest project, Mant. The film features a behemoth mutant that is “Half Man…Half Ant…All Terror!!!”
“In Matinee, Dante has captured the reason that Cold War trash like Mant struck such a nerve in American youth: The prospect of atomic disaster was so fanciful and abstract that it began to merge in people’s imaginations with the very pop culture it had spawned,” Owen Gleiberman, chief film critic for Variety, said. “In effect, it all became one big movie. Matinee is a loving tribute to the schlock that fear created.”
“Joe Dante’s passion for film as reflected in his very special blend of horror, subversive comedy and sharp political satire makes for very unique voice in American cinema,” SHC’s artistic director Giulia D’Agnolo Vallan, who will moderate the conversation with Kehr, relayed. “After the Gremlins director kindly appeared via skype for SHC last year to introduce his rarely seen The Second Civil War (as part of our Present Tenseseries), we chose one his most beloved titles, Matinee.”
Prior to joining the Museum of Modern Art’s Department of Film, Kehr worked as a critic and journalist for the Chicago Reader, Chicago Tribune, New York Daily News and The New York Times. He also penned several books, including When Movies Mattered: Reviews from a Transformative Decade (2011), Movies That Mattered: More Reviews from a Transformative Decade (2017), and Italian Film Posters (2003). Roger Ebert described Kehr as “one of the most gifted film critics in America.”
Admission to the screening is $15 for adults and free for children under 14-years-old.
Pierson High School is located at 200 Jermain Avenue in Sag Harbor. For tickets, visit www.sagharborcinema.org.