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CAPE ANN COMMUNITY CINEMA OFFERS
FREE VIRTUAL MOVIE
Radio Cape Cod” director to host
an online Q&A on March 4

While COVID-19 has kept North Shore fixture The Cape Ann Community Cinema (CACC) from showing films in-person, its year-long online “virtual cinema” program continues, this month with a free film from a Massachusetts independent filmmaker.

Andrew Silver, whose 1985 supernatural romance “Return: A Case Of Possession” was a longtime video store staple, will host a Zoom Q&A on Thursday, March 4 at 6:30pm, regarding his recently-released romantic drama, “Radio Cape Cod,” which CACC is presently offering free on its website at http://www.CapeAnnCinema.com.

The story revolves around three couples in love and a wedding that takes place over a five day period in a beautiful seaside community on Cape Cod. It features Tamzin Outhwaite, who starred from 1998-2019 as Mel Owen on BBC’s “EastEnders,” and Tamzin Merchant, who played Anne Hale on all 3 seasons of “Star Trek” producer Brannon Braga’s dark historical fantasy “Salem” from 2014-2017. Told in two 36-minute parts, “Radio Cape Cod” was filmed in 2008 and 2018.

While the film is completely free to view, Silver asks for only one thing in return.

“If you have thoughts or feelings you’d like to share about the film,” the award-winning man-of-many-hats says, “we’d love to hear them.”

“We’re happy to offer this sweet little film to our many patrons,” notes CACC creative director Rob Newton. “I’ve known of Andrew since my days in the video business, and I am very excited to be able to work with him in bringing this new project to a wider audience.” Newton’s first job in video rental was at Hamilton Video on Bay Road in South Hamilton, a mom-and-pop he worked at in high school and bought in 1990, when he was 20. He went on to running corporate stores, and sold his 7200 sq. ft. juggernaut Starship Video to now-defunct national chain Hollywood Video in 2003.

“I’m looking forward to seeing some of my die-hard patrons online on February 24,” Newton adds. “I miss them all very much.”

“Thank you” donations (of any amount) to Cape Ann Community Cinema can be made online at www.CapeAnnCinema.com/donate.

Cape Ann Community Cinema has been bringing the best independent and foreign films to North Shore audiences since 2007, having hosted over 1,500 films since its inception. CACC continues to bring the same kinds of films to audiences during this prolonged shutdown through its regular online first-run offerings at www.CapeAnnCinema.com, and plans to launch its own streaming service, “The OurTown Movie Channel,” in Spring of 2021.•••

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escher

M.C. ESCHER: JOURNEY TO INFINITY is the story of world famous Dutch graphic artist M.C. Escher (1898-1972). Equal parts history, psychology, and psychedelia, Robin Lutz’s entertaining, eye-opening portrait gives us the man through his own words and images: diary musings, excerpts from lectures, correspondence and more are voiced by British actor Stephen Fry, while Escher’s woodcuts, lithographs, and other print works appear in both original and playfully altered form. Two of his sons, George (92) and Jan (80), reminisce about their parents while musician Graham Nash (Crosby, Stills & Nash) talks about Escher’s rediscovery in the 1970s. The film looks at Escher’s legacy: one can see tributes to his work in movies, in fiction, on posters, on tattoos, and elsewhere throughout our culture; indeed, few fine artists of the 20th century can lay claim to such popular appeal.
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August 8, 2020

Hello My Cinema Faithful,

“I don’t have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad.” —Howard Beale (Peter Finch), ‘Network’

CinemaSalem, one of our inspirations and our “sister cinema,” has closed permanently. Corporate chain AMC is essentially in hospice care. And our other exhibitor friends in the area are scared that the end is nigher than ever. And they should be—70% of moviegoers now prefer to watch a new release movie at home. Yes, surviving movie theaters will begin to reopen locally soon, but will it really be safe to do so? When will people have confidence enough to return to theaters in the numbers of days past? Will the movie business ever be the same again?

We have thought long and hard about this, and we do not feel that we (or any venue) can safely reopen until after “Vaccine Day.” The nature of our microcinema is intimacy (our space on Rogers Street seats 75 in around 1600 sq. ft.), and even with distancing guidelines—which take our per-show occupancy down to around and unsustainable 15—and other precautions, the risk is too great to our patron base and staff. We also feel that another outbreak is imminent by year’s end, which will send everyone back home again.

The other side of that coin, of course, is the costs involved in reopening after the long lockdown. While we love our new space on Rogers Street behind Floating Lotus, keeping it until “Vaccine Day” while undertaking all of the safety requirements with little to no revenue through a date TBD is an expensive proposition, and would break us. Regrettably, we must give up the space—at least for now—and reduce our footprint at the Whistlestop Mall in Rockport. This means donating all the seating and acquiring new seating when the time is right, and hoping that space is still available then.

We also feel that the majority of you, our patron base who has kept us vibrant since our debut in 2007, will not come out regularly enough—or at all—until the Pandemic is safely in our collective rear-view. Seriously, how fun will a no-talking, no-eating, fearing-for-your-life night out really be?Also, from the start, our patron base has skewed older, a demographic that is very high-risk during this germ war. I could just not bear it if I knew that any one of you got sick and died as a result of visiting our Cinema. I love films, this community, and all of you, but, come on…

The movie business has changed forever as a result of this Pandemic. There will always be brick-and-mortar theaters, and we hope to continue to be one of them when it is safe to re-open. But, as I said, it’s just not safe.

So where do we go from here? As you may know, we have been offering a virtual multiplex of new releases by way of our virtual cinema portal, CACC@HOME. Using it helps us sustain during this seemingly interminable downtime. And coming this fall is our own streaming service, The OurTown Movie Channel (which a friend suggested that we dub “Newtflix”). It will look a lot like The Criterion Channel (with the framework built by the same folks), and will contain as much as we can bring you of the diverse programming you’ve come to expect from us.

Stay safe, folks. We’ll meet again, some sunny day.

Love,
rln

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