Wednesday: A Film Buff’s Patron Saint Day
Sometimes Wednesdays are just blah. They’re like the middle child who gets shooed away a lot or everybody says yes just to shut them up. It’s the day you want to be over so you can get smashed on thirsty Thursday and start the weekend’s long streak of bad calls.
It also happens that there’s little to do on said day. I mean, if you want to drink there’s always a place that’ll welcome your hard earned chedda, but if you want to chill and maybe interact with some peeps, then your options dwindle. No one bets on Wednesdays, they’re like the horse with the fucked up name at the race tracks.
There is a place though, where the Wednesday Syndrome can be treated with a juicy dose of celluloid shot right into the cinephile’s vein.
This joint projects a selection of VHS movies every mid-week. One Wednesday they showed The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994) at 7:00 p.m.; Tremors (1990) at 9:00 p.m.; King of New York (1990) two hours later, and Game of Death (1978) with Bruce Lee, past midnight.
Why do I think this place is the coolest?
For some time I’ve been trying to find a movie I saw during my childhood alien-flick-binging phase, when I used to go gaga for flicks about small towns taken over by freaky E.T.s.
What I remembered was basically a trailer: some galactic beings with the ability to control people’s minds invade a town in the Mid West. A kid with a typical 80’s bowl cut dreams or actually sees a spaceship landing on the backwoods of his house. Adults begin to behave like creepers after the incident, especially his crazy teacher (Louise Fletchernis is scary AF), who he follows to the woods and into a spaceship. I also remember her having some kind of device on the back of her neck.
That’s all I had in my memory and whenever I asked anyone (except my friend Mike Burciaga, who didn’t remember the title either but had seen the movie), all I got were blank faces and shaking heads.
It was driving me nuts! Unlike Shazam (that movie Simbad is part of and a lot of people claim to have seen but it actually doesn’t exist), this movie does exist. I clearly remember stress farting while watching it.
I flash back to the feeling of the worn out TDK copy we never returned to the video store; sliding the tape into the Panasonic PV-1225 and pushing it down until it clicked and I could press play.
When I told my chopped up version of the plot to the owner of this film freak pop-up screen, he stood up from his golden throne (really), walked to a wall covered with VHS tapes from top to bottom, retrieved a copy and gave it to me in silence, as if he was forever waiting for me to ask the question.
Invaders From Mars (1986) is the title of the movie and it was on queue to be projected along with Dawn of The Dead (1978); True Romance (1993), and Groundhog Day (1993).
There are thousands of tapes, all kinds of genres…from classics to obscure flicks and whatever lies in between. Plus, there’s a concession stand with all sorts of candy to feed your ventral shrooms. Also, you’ll most-likely have a good chat with someone.
This place is to be found. You need a watchword, not many know about it and that’s the point. It’s not about being gratuitously dickish, just culling the onlookers. Go find it if you crave movies on a boring night, or maybe you’ll just stumble upon it one day, hopefully on a Wednesday.