Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Puzzle Within the Castro Theater's October 2014 Calendar

The October calendar at the Castro Theater was tough.  The only person I quickly recognized was Ralph Bellamy on Halloween.  My co-worker, whose facial recognition skills I praised in my September post, drew a blank for the other three.

I cheated and used Google Image Search to identify Ruth Gordon on October 6.  Ms. Gordon is best known for her role in Harold and Maude which doesn't get screened as much now that the Red Vic is closed.  She was also memorable in Every Which Way But Loose and Rosemary's Baby.

That knowledge broke the logjam for me.  I recalled that Ralph Bellamy & Ruth Gordon appeared together in Rosemary's Baby (1968).  Then I noticed the guy on October 20 looked a lot like the actor who portrayed Ruth Gordon's character's husband in the film.  A quick IMDB search resulted in his name - Sidney Blackmer.  That only left the woman shown on October 28.  Seeing the Rosemary's Baby association, I looked each actress in the cast up in IMDB until I found Patsy Kelly.


October 6 - Ruth Gordon

October 20 - Sidney Blackmer

October 28 - Patsy Kelly

October 31 - Ralph Bellamy

The clues obviously point to Rosemary's Baby but unfortunately the film is not on the Castro Theater's October calendar.  Roman Polanski directed the film so I looked for other films by Polanski on the calendar this month. No luck.

After perusing the calendar for a few moments, I recalled what Jesse Hawthorne Ficks of Midnites for Maniacs had told the audience at the September 19 screening of Inside Llewyn Davis and Coal Miner's Daughter.  He mentioned his upcoming events.  On October 17, Ficks is screening The Dark Knight & Reign of Fire.  Although not listed on the Maniac's website nor the Castro's, I recalled that Jesse had said he was screening a double feature consisting of The Notebook (directed by Nick Cassavetes) and Minnie and Moskowitz (directed by John Cassavetes) in November.  John Cassavetes was in Rosemary's Baby but it seems a stretch for the clues in the October calendar to be pointing to a November film event.

I can't find anything with Mia Farrow on the calendar either.

I also tried looking for anyone whose mother was named Rosemary.  The following individuals' mothers were not named Rosemary - Alfred Hitchcock, Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak (Vertigo), Bernardo Bertolucci (October 18), Nicholas Kristof (October 7), Lauren Bacall (several films on multiple dates) and Andy Warhol (Chelsea Girls).

I notice Ghostbusters on October 24.  That movie deals with a case of demonic possession which is close to the plot of Rosemary's Baby.

Halloween is the most obvious choice for the object of the calendar's clues, but I don't think that is right.  Kind of life, the puzzle on the calendar don't come with a key so I can never know with 100% certainty if I am right or wrong.


I've never been a big fan of horror films or Halloween.  Halloween always seemed silly to me and now seems like an excuse for people to get drunk.  Horror films rarely frighten me anymore.  I guess I'm just becoming a grumpy old man.  For that reason, the Castro's October calendar is not particularly appealing to me.  Also by my count, the Castro is screening 21 films in October which I have seen before.

I would have liked to have seen Gandhi on Sunday but had other plans.  Orpheus (October 21), The Pawnbroker (October 22) and Giuseppe Makes a Movie (October 27) interest me.  All three non-film events sponsored by the Bay Area Science Festival on October 25 interest me as well.

However, it is the Hou Hsiao-hsien retrospective at the PFA which excites me the most in October.  With 18 films in the series, I believe the series contains all of the Taiwanese director's feature film efforts.  The series begins Friday (October 10) with The Sandwich Man and Cute Girl and continues until December 14.

At present, the Mill Valley Film Festival is occurring.  It will continue until Sunday (October 12).  I have seen several films there this past weekend and intend to see more this upcoming weekend.

November looks to be a busy month compared to October.  The San Francisco Film Society is sponsoring three mini-festival:  French Cinema Now (November 6-9), Hong Kong Cinema (November 14-16) and New Italian Cinema (November 19-23).  All three series will be at the Vogue Theater; their lineups are scheduled to be posted tomorrow.

Third I's program has already been announced.  The San Francisco International South Asian Film Festival runs in two segments.  The festival will be at the Viz and the Castro from November 6-9 and at CineArts in Palo Alto on November 15.

Finally, Elliot Lavine (and Don Macolm) returns to the Roxie from November 14-17 for a French film noir series titled "The French Had a Name For It: Classic French Noir from the 40s through the 60s."  The program for the series is not yet posted.


Castro Theater Calendar - October 2014

No comments: