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Movies & Discussions [clear filter]
Friday, October 28
 

3:30pm

War of the Worlds (1953)
the first of five film adaptations of H.G. Well’s 1897 novel, changing the setting from Victorian-era England to 1953 southern California, while also being a commentary on the then-ongoing Cold War and the nuclear arms race. Earth is suddenly and unexpectedly invaded by Martians and American scientist Clayton Forrester searches for any weakness that can stop them. It is considered to be one of the best films of the 1950s and won an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects.
Trivia: Mystery Science Theater 3000 named one of its lead characters, the mad scientist Dr. Clayton Forrester, as an homage to the 1953 film.

Friday October 28, 2016 3:30pm - 4:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

5:00pm

Where the Wild Things Are (2009)
A 2009 fantasy film adapted from Maurice Sendak’s 1963 children’s book of the same name. The film centers on a lonely nine-year-old boy named Max who sails away to an island inhabited by creatures known as the "Wild Things," who declare Max their king. Directed by Spike Jonze, it combines live-action, animatronics, and computer-generated imagery (CGI) as well as performers in costumes provided by the Jim Henson Company. The film stars Max Records, Forest Whitaker, and Catherine O'Hara.
Trivia: In an interview with Newsweek, Maurice Sendak stated that parents who deemed the film's content to be too disturbing for children should "Go to hell. That's a question I will not tolerate." He further noted, "If they can’t handle it, they should go home… “I saw the most horrendous movies that were unfit for child's eyes. So what? I managed to survive."

Friday October 28, 2016 5:00pm - 6:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

7:00pm

Labyrinth (1986)
Labyrinth celebrates its 30th anniversary this year and what better homage to David Bowie than watching the Goblin King reprising his role once again? This 1986 iconic musical fantasy film, directed by Jim Henson and executively produced by George Lucas, is based on the concept art of Brian Froud. This coming-of-age story centers on petulant Sarah rescuing her brother Toby from Jareth, the Goblin King before midnight or else risk losing him forever. Although the film was a box office disappointment, it has since become a cult classic. This was the last feature film Jim Henson made before his death in 1990.
Trivia: The dialogue—starting with the phrase, "You remind me of the babe”—between Jareth and the goblins in the Magic Dance sequence is a direct reference to an exchange between Cary Grant and Shirley Temple in the 1947 film, The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer.

Friday October 28, 2016 7:00pm - 8:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

9:00pm

Open Discussion: Movies for All Ages.
What’s the secret to stories that entertain the youngest while keeping the interest of the more mature mind?

Friday October 28, 2016 9:00pm - 9:30pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

9:45pm

Shadow Cast Members Prep Time
Shadow Cast Members prep time for both Dr. Horrible and Once More, with Feeling

Friday October 28, 2016 9:45pm - 10:00pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

10:15pm

Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog (2008)
A 2008 musical comedy miniseries in three acts, produced exclusively for Internet distribution. The movie was written by writer/director Joss Whedon, his brothers Zack Whedon (a television writer) and Jed Whedon (a composer), and writer/actress Maurissa Tancharoen. The team wrote the musical during the 2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike. The idea was to create something small and inexpensive, yet professionally done, in a way that would circumvent the issues that were being protested during the strike. It won the 2009 Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form.
Trivia: Dr. Horrible's Freeze Ray, which he later turns into a Death Ray, is the stun gun carried by Alliance troopers in Firefly (2002), held upside-down.

Friday October 28, 2016 10:15pm - 10:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

11:00pm

Buffy, the Vampire Slayer: “Once More, with Feeling'
the seventh episode of the sixth season of the supernatural drama television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the only one in the series performed as a musical. It was written and directed by the show's creator, Joss Whedon, and originally aired on UPN in the United States on November 6, 2001. "Once More, with Feeling" explores changes in the relationships of the main characters, using the plot device that a demon—credited as "Sweet" but unnamed in the episode—compels the people of Sunnydale to break into song at random moments to express hidden truths. The title of the episode comes from a line sung by Sweet; once the characters have revealed their truths and face the consequences of hearing each other's secrets, he challenges them to "say you're happy now, once more, with feeling".
Trivia: Buffy the Vampire Slayer was the first show in U.S. television history to portray a long-term lesbian relationship among the core cast of characters. This was best demonstrated in the song “Under Your Spell.”

Friday October 28, 2016 11:00pm - 11:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor
 
Saturday, October 29
 

8:00am

Wonder Woman: The New Original Wonder Woman
aired in 1975 starring Lynda Carter, based on the comic book that debuted in 1941. Staying true to the comic, the story opens with Major Steve Trevor flying to the Devil's Triangle to intercept a Nazi plane during WWII. Both planes are destroyed and Steve washes up on the shores of Paradise Island, where he's discovered by two Amazon women, one who just happens to be Princess Diana. Diana is smitten while nursing Trevor back to health and sets out to take him back to America in her invisible jet. Once there, she learns more of what it means to live among men as well as the effects of WWII. Her Amazonian powers and skills come in handy when foiling the first of many Nazi plots and we see the first signature Wonder Woman spin. This year marks the 75th anniversary of Wonder Woman, who was created by psychologist William Moulton Marston with his wife and co-creator Elizabeth Holloway Marston, and artist H.G. Peter. Their co-habitant, Olive Bryne, was the inspiration for the physical form of Wonder Woman as well as the bracelets she often wore.
Trivia: During the filming of the pilot, producers were trying to figure out a way to show how Diana Prince became Wonder Woman, when Carter suggested that she do a spin. The spinning transformation was later incorporated into the comics and into animated appearances such as Super Friends & Justice League Unlimited. (Prior to this, in the comics, Diana would spin her magic lasso around her body, with the lasso changing her clothes, or by simply changing at superhuman speed.)

Saturday October 29, 2016 8:00am - 9:00am
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

9:15am

Open Discussion: Movies versus TV
Which is better for adapting your basic story: the time given in a television series or the large Hollywood budget of a film?

Saturday October 29, 2016 9:15am - 9:50am
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

10:00am

Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (2005)
A 2005 British-American comic science fiction film directed by Garth Jennings, based upon previous works in the media franchise of the same name created by Douglas Adams. It stars Martin Freeman, Sam Rockwell, Mos Def, Zooey Deschanel, and the voices of Stephen Fry (the guide book) and Alan Rickman (Marvin, the Paranoid Android). Adams, who co-wrote the screenplay with Karey Kirkpatrick, died in 2001, before production began; the film is dedicated to him. Everyman Arthur Dent is whisked off the Earth seconds before it is demolished to make way for a hyperspace bypass. Sadly, his day has only just begun. Before it's over, he will have been blown up, attended a poetry reading, been thrown out of an airlock, rescued, reunited with the love of his life, shot at, had a fish stuck in his ear, insulted, whacked, sickened, deprived of tea, learned the answer to the ultimate question, and almost had his brain sawed out by mice. He then goes to have lunch.
Trivia: Deep Thought explains the significance of the number 42, at 42 minutes into the film.

Saturday October 29, 2016 10:00am - 11:50am
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

12:00pm

John Varley, Discussion of Millennium
John Varley discusses the movie based on his 1977 short story "Air Raid." Varley started work on a screenplay based on that short story in 1979, and later released the expanded story in novel form in 1983. Titled Millennium, the novel was nominated for both Philip K. Dick and Hugo Awards.

Saturday October 29, 2016 12:00pm - 12:20pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

12:30pm

Millennium (1989)
A 1989 science fiction film directed by Michael Anderson and starring Kris Kristofferson, Cheryl Ladd, Robert Joy, Brent Carver, Al Waxman, and Daniel J. Travanti. "The people aboard Flight 35 are about to land 1,000 years from where they planned to." Bill Smith, chief investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), has been assigned to determine whether human error is the cause of an airline crash. He and his team of investigators are very confused by the words on the cockpit voice recorder by the crew relating to the crash. But at the same time, a theoretical physicist named Dr. Arnold Mayer has a real professional curiosity about the crash, which borders on science fiction. While giving a university lecture, he talks about time travel and the possibility of visitors from the future. Smith discovers the involvement of an organization of time travelers from a future Earth irreparably polluted who seek to rejuvenate mankind from those about to perish in the past.
Trivia: Regarding the Millennium book: most of the chapter titles are named after famous novels and short stories about time travel by other authors, as Varley mentions in the book's "Author's note": "The time-travel story has a long history in science fiction. The theme has been so extensively explored, in fact, that I found it no trouble to write a book with chapter titles borrowed almost exclusively from the long list of stories that served, in one way or another, as ancestors to this one."

Saturday October 29, 2016 12:30pm - 2:20pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

2:30pm

Cloud Atlas (2012)
A 2012 German-American science fiction film written and directed by The Wachowskis and Tom Tykwer. Adapted from the 2004 novel of the same name by David Mitchell, the film has multiple plots set across six different eras, which Mitchell described as "a sort of pointillist mosaic." The official synopsis describes it as "an exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution." Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, and Jim Broadbent lead an ensemble cast. Tribesman Zachry Bailey recounts stories to his grandchildren on an extraterrestrial Earth colony. These stories take place throughout history in various locations: Pacific Islands in 1849, Cambridge/Edinburgh in 1936, San Francisco in 1973, London in 2012, Neo Seoul in 2144, and Big Isle (Hawaii), 106 winters after the Fall in 2321.
Trivia: Number 451 (Luisa Rey's apartment and character Sonmi-451) is a nod to classic science fiction novel Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, which the author named for “the temperature at which book-paper catches fire, and burns.”

Saturday October 29, 2016 2:30pm - 5:20pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

5:30pm

Open Discussion: Action and Philosophy
Is action always mindless and philosophy always boring? Or can the two co-exist to tell a story well?

Saturday October 29, 2016 5:30pm - 5:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

6:00pm

Time Traveler's Wife
A 2009 American romantic drama film based on Audrey Niffenegger's 2003 novel of the same name. Directed by Robert Schwentke, the film stars Eric Bana, Rachel McAdams, and Ron Livingston. When Henry DeTamble meets Clare Abshire in a Chicago library they both understand that he is a time traveler, but she knows much more about him as he has not yet been to the times and places where they have already met. He falls in love with her, as she has already with him, but his continuing unavoidable absences while time traveling—and then returning with increasing knowledge of their future—makes things ever more difficult for Clare.
Trivia: After filming was done, Eric Bana started filming Star Trek (2009), a role which required him to shave his head. When re-shoots for The Time Traveler's Wife (2009) were needed, production was put on hold so Eric's hair could grow out. It took so long that the movie's release date was pushed back by nearly a year.

Saturday October 29, 2016 6:00pm - 7:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

8:00pm

Open Discussion: Wibbly Timelines
Time travel can be as simple as moving the action to a new time period or it can be a plot device, integral to the story, affecting structure and order.

Moderators
RB

Richard Blake

Richard Blake is a full-time father and part-time educator who spends his life embracing the bleeding and bludgeoning edges of both science fiction and science education. As his alter ego Dok Science, Richard designs and delivers scifi-inspired STEM and writing programs to local elementary... Read More →

Saturday October 29, 2016 8:00pm - 8:35pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

8:45pm

Doctor Who: Blink
The tenth episode of the third series of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was first broadcast on June 9, 2007, on the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). The episode, written by Stephen Moffat and directed by Hettie MacDonald, is based on a previous short story written by Moffat for the 2006 Doctor Who Annual, entitled "'What I Did on My Christmas Holidays' By Sally Sparrow." In the episode, the Doctor—a time-travelling alien played by David Tennant—and his companion Martha Jones (Freema Agyeman) are trapped in the past and try to communicate with a young woman, Sally Sparrow (Carey Mulligan), to prevent the Weeping Angels from taking control of the TARDIS. Sparrow and her best friend's brother, Larry Nightingale (Finlay Robertson), must unravel a set of cryptic clues sent through time by the marooned Doctor. "Blink" received widespread critical acclaim, and is widely considered to be one of the best episodes of the show. Moffat won the BAFTA Craft and BAFTA Cymru awards for Best Writer, and the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form, while for her single performance in the series, Mulligan won the Constellation Award for Best Female Performance in a 2007 Science Fiction Television Episode. In 2009 the episode was voted the second best Doctor Who story ever by readers of Doctor Who Magazine.
Trivia: This is the first episode to be directed by a woman after a 22-year interval. The previous one was “The Mark of the Rani.”

Saturday October 29, 2016 8:45pm - 9:20pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

9:30pm

Shadow Cast Members Prep Time
Shadow Cast Members prep time for Rocky Horror Picture Show.

Saturday October 29, 2016 9:30pm - 9:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

10:00pm

Rocky Horror Picture Show (British Version)
A 1975 musical comedy horror film directed by Jim Sharman. The screenplay was written by Sharman and Richard O'Brien based on the 1973 musical stage production, The Rocky Horror Show, also written by O'Brien. The production is a humorous tribute to the science fiction and horror B movies of the late 1930s through early 1970s. It stars Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, and Barry Bostwick along with cast members from the original Royal Court Theatre, Roxy Theatre, and Belasco Theatre productions.
Trivia: Easter eggs, literally. Genuine Easter eggs can be seen throughout the movie: in a light fixture, in an elevator scene, and even under Frank's throne. The film crew had had an Easter egg hunt and not all were found, thus they ended up in a few scenes.

Saturday October 29, 2016 10:00pm - 11:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor
 
Sunday, October 30
 

8:00am

Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad
A 1949 animated package film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by RKO Radio Pictures. The film consists of two segments—the first is based on the 1908 children's novel The Wind in the Willows by British author Kenneth Grahame, and the second is based on the 1820 short story "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" by American author Washington Irving. As the film's animated segments are based on literary works, they are both introduced in live-action scenes set in a library as a framing device. The first segment is introduced and narrated by Basil Rathbone, and the second segment is introduced and narrated by Bing Crosby. Smitten with motorcars, the wealthy and reckless sportsman Mr. Toad soon drives his close friends Mole, Rat, and Angus MacBadger into a worried frenzy! Then meet Ichabod Crane, the spindly schoolteacher who dreams of sweeping the lovely Katrina off her feet—until Brom Bones, the town bully, gets involved.
Trivia: This is one of Disney's four "Package Films." During World War II the studio lost a lot of manpower and resources, which left it with countless unfinished ideas too long for shorts and too short for features. So, inventive as Disney was, it stuck short ideas together into feature-length movies. The other Package Films are Make Mine Music (1946), Melody Time (1948) and Fun & Fancy Free (1947).

Sunday October 30, 2016 8:00am - 9:00am
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

9:15am

Open Discussion: Adapting Children’s and YA Literature to Film & Television
The best stories for children also keep adults entertained and a good movie adaptation should do the same.

Sunday October 30, 2016 9:15am - 9:45am
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

10:00am

A Series of Unfortunate Events
A 2004 American black comedy fantasy film directed by Brad Silberling. It is a film adaptation of A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler), covering the first three books: The Bad Beginning, The Reptile Room, and The Wide Window. The film stars Jim Carrey as the villainous Count Olaf who adopts three wealthy orphan siblings in an attempt to steal their late parents' fortune. It won the Academy Award for Best Makeup.
Trivia: The beginning of the film features a false-start opening sequence called "The Littlest Elf." The sequence was created in CGI, but was designed to resemble the stop-motion animated children's specials commonly produced in the 1960s and '70s, most famously by Rankin-Bass.

Sunday October 30, 2016 10:00am - 11:50am
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

12:00pm

Open Discussion: Best Halloween Movies.
We all have our favorites for the spooky time of the year. What are yours and why?

Sunday October 30, 2016 12:00pm - 12:50pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

1:00pm

Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
A 1994 American horror drama film directed by Kenneth Branagh and starring Robert De Niro, Kenneth Branagh, Tom Hulce, Helena Bonham Carter, Ian Holm, John Cleese, and Aidan Quinn. Despite several differences and additions in plot from the novel, it is considered to be the most faithful film adaptation of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus. Victor Frankenstein is a promising young doctor who, devastated by the death of his mother during childbirth, becomes obsessed with bringing the dead back to life. His experiments lead to the creation of a monster, which Frankenstein has put together with the remains of corpses. When Victor rejects his creation, the Creature escapes and later swears revenge.
Trivia: Kenneth Branagh banned the term "Monster" from the set. He insisted that everyone refer to DeNiro's character the way he was identified in the credits, as "The Sharp-Featured Man."

Sunday October 30, 2016 1:00pm - 2:20pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

2:30pm

Young Frankenstein
A 1974 American horror comedy film directed by Mel Brooks and starring Gene Wilder as the title character, a descendant of the infamous Dr. Victor Frankenstein. The supporting cast includes Teri Garr, Cloris Leachman, Marty Feldman, Peter Boyle, Madeline Kahn, Kenneth Mars, Richard Haydn, and Gene Hackman. The screenplay was written by Wilder and Brooks. The film is an affectionate parody of the classic horror film genre; in particular the various film adaptations of Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein produced by Universal in the 1930s. It won Hugo and Nebula Awards, 5 Saturn Awards and a Golden Screen Award. A young neurosurgeon inherits the castle of his grandfather, the famous Dr. Victor von Frankenstein. Picked up at the train station by Igor, Victor meets his lab assistant Inga on the way to the castle and finally meets the old housekeeper, Frau Blücher. Young Frankenstein believes that the work of his grandfather is only crap, but when he discovers the book where the mad doctor described his reanimation experiment, he suddenly changes his mind.
Trivia: The shifting hump on Igor's back was an ad-libbed gag of Marty Feldman's. He had surreptitiously been shifting the hump back and forth for several days when cast members finally noticed. It was then added to the script.

Sunday October 30, 2016 2:30pm - 4:20pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor

4:30pm

Open Discussion: Horror and Humor
Fright and laughter are entirely different emotional responses but can they blend successfully to tell a story that will really entertain you?

Sunday October 30, 2016 4:30pm - 5:00pm
Highlands Amphitheatre Ground Floor