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Joe Dante introduces and discusses Matinee, perhaps the film he was born to make, an unspeakably delightful tribute to moviegoing, youth, and the golden age of sci-fi that also affectionately sends up small-town American fears, nuclear paranoia, and movie business schlock merchants.
Set in Key West during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, the film focuses on a 14-year-old boy who's obsessed with the imminent visit of B-movie king Lawrence Woolsey (John Goodman in a brilliant performance, based on real-life gimmick-movie master William Castle). The purpose of Woolsey's visit is to promote Mant!, a bargain-basement production about a man who mutates into an ant. (See the rare expanded version of the film-within-the-film at our October 1 screening.) Also with Cathy Moriarty, Kellie Martin, and appearances by Dante's regular "company" of character actors including Dick Miller, Robert Picardo, Kevin McCarthy, and William Schallert. (99 mins., 35mm)
After the screening, Dante talks about the film and his career with Tim Lucas. Lucas, a Cincinnati resident, is the editor of Video Watchdog magazine, which used to publish a regular column reprinting Dante’s early film criticism.
Matinee Introduced by Joe Dante