The Harvard Exits

Jan 18, 2015

Free event!
Screening at 4:45pm
Discussion at 6pm
Fond farewells at 7pm

"Which Seattle theater will close next?" the Seattle Met wondered last month, observing (and warning) that, "We have a trend, people." 

The incomparable Harvard Exit flickers into darkness on the heels of a perfect storm that led to the unexpected art house release of a gaseous wave of Seth Rogen jokes. Small, independently owned movie theaters are the mom and pop shops in an industry dominated by box stores, at a time when customers are shopping increasingly online. The wild wild west of the film industry is now multi-platform.

So, how are Seattle's small theaters doing these days? We're wrangling together theater operators, programmers and filmmakers from across town in a public discussion to contemplate the current state and future of theatrical exhibition. Speakers include:

  • George Kindl—former manager of the Harvard Exit 
  • Jeff Brein, Faraway Entertainment—operates multiple theaters in the area and just bought the Varsity 
  • David McRae, Ark Lodge Cinema—the first Seattle theater to book The Interview
  • Brian Alter, Grand Illusion—programmer of the only volunteer-run theater in town
  • Megan Griffiths—filmmaker 
  • Charles Mudede, The Stranger—film critic and filmmaker

After setting the scene with this talk, we'll pay our respects and bid fond farewells to the Harvard Exit and On 15th Video. All are welcome to join and share memories and odes, propose toasts, and perform interpretive dance pieces. 

It all starts at 4:45pm on January 18 with a free screening of The Juche Idea (Jim Finn, 2010), an hour-long satirical imagining of King Jong Il's ideological textbook "On the Art of Cinema."  It follows a South Korean video artist and her Bulgarian interviewer on a rural North Korean art residency populated by Stalinist vegetarians. They clean chicken poop and create video mash ups of anti-capitalist English lessons between a spaced out Russian and a friendly but confused North Korean, footage of the mind-boggling choreography of the Mass Games, and excerpts from propaganda-laden North Korean films. Plus, a socialist sci-fi sequence. 

Image copyright of the artist, courtesy of Video Data Bank

<Back to Calendar