Valentine's movies, Percy Jackson, young jazz musicians, and more
Win free movie tickets
Editor's note: Comment on today's "Cinema Chat" for a chance to win free movie tickets to the Michigan Theater. Some time between now and 6 a.m. Wednesday, leave a comment on this column, written by the Michigan Theater's Russ Collins. Offer your opinion on a recent movie you've seen, or on anything Russ mentions. We'll randomly select a winner and notify that person via the email address they signed up with. They will get two passes to a movie of their choice.
Movies vs. the Olympics
Media cultures clash as the Winter Olympics take over the airwaves for the next 2 weeks. Movie releases, your favorite TV shows, as well as other sporting events will all take a back seat to the world’s greatest winter athletes competing for gold, silver and bronze in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. The festivities and competitions will all be broadcast, sort of live, over NBC-affiliated TV channels. However, even before the Winter Olympics start, they are proving to be a disappointment for NBC.
NBC expects to lose $200 million dollars broadcasting this year’s winter games. To get an idea of how much $200 million dollars is, please know that $200 million would be enough money to operate the Michigan Theater for 80 years and not charge anybody for anything. Imagine, 80 years of free movies and popcorn. Eighty years of free theater use by the Ann Arbor Symphony, Ann Arbor Film Festival, University Musical Society, The Ark and many others! So, for the sake of NBC, tune in to your favorite Olympic events; however, please know that when you’re tired of sitting at home watching TV there are great movies playing in local theaters.
Movies and Valentine's Day
More movies for romantics ... and others
“The Wolfman” is a thoughtful remake inspired by the classic Universal film that launched a legacy of horror. Benicio Del Toro stars as Lawrence Talbot, a haunted nobleman lured back to his family estate after his brother vanishes. Reunited with his estranged father (Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins), Talbot sets out to find his brother... and discovers a horrifying destiny for himself. It also stars Emily Blunt and will play at a multiplex near you.
“Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief,” directed by Chris Columbus (“Home Alone,” “Mrs. Doubtfire,” and a couple “Harry Potter” films), has a cast that includes Uma Thurman and Pierce Brosnan, but no actual Olympic athletes. It is based on a series of books by Rick Riordan and is about a troubled, modern 12-year-old boy who learns that his birth father is the ancient god Poseidon. The boy’s mission is to settle a feud between his dad, Zeus, and Hades. This film has been kept away from reviewers and opens at your local multiplex.
The North Korea in Films series presented by the U-M Center for Korean Studies will screen “A State of Mind” at the Michigan Theater on Saturday, February 13 at 2 p.m. The film provides a rare glimpse into what is one of the world’s least-known societies. Admission is free.
See you at the movies!
Russ Collins is executive director of the Michigan Theater in Ann Arbor. Tune in to the audio version of “Cinema Chat” on WEMU radio (89.1-FM) each Thursday at 7:40 a.m. and 5:40 p.m., or listen to it online at WEMU's web site.