For the 12th-annual Wex Drive-In series, the Wexner Center for the Arts at The Ohio State University puts its own spin on summer blockbuster season with a trio of vintage Hollywood hits from the 1980s and ‘90s. As always, admission is free for this popular film program, the only outdoor series in Central Ohio to screen all films in 35mm.
Wex Drive-In features start at dusk, or around 9 PM. Movie lovers are invited to bring a chair or blanket and start arriving at 8 PM to stake out a spot and enjoy delectable food and drink from local partners Hai Poke, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, and Seventh Son Brewing. Wexner Center members can present their membership card at the Jeni’s cart at each screening to receive a free scoop.
In the event of rain, screenings will be moved indoors to Mershon Auditorium.
The selections for this year’s Wex Drive-In:
Thu, June 14
(Rob Reiner, 1990)
Amid the resurgence of Stephen King adaptations, it’s a great time to return to one of the best. Misery sees a popular author (James Caan) rescued from a car crash by a devoted fan (Kathy Bates in an Oscar-winning performance for the ages), only to see her caregiving take a….um….swing for the worse. (107 mins., 35mm)
Thu, July 19
(Tim Burton, 1989)
Before Ben Affleck became the Caped Crusader for the current DC Universe reboot, Michael Keaton donned the cape and cowl of crime-fighting billionaire Bruce Wayne in director Tim Burton’s 1989 version of the superhero story. Featuring Jack Nicholson as the demented Joker and original songs by Prince, including the number-one hit, “Batdance.” (126 mins., 35mm)
Tue, August 14
The Fifth Element
(Luc Besson, 1997)
Still influential for its visual flair and Jean Paul Gaultier costumes, Luc Besson’s insanely colorful 23rd-century tale follows a perfect being (Milla Jovovich in her breakout role) who’s been constructed to save the world from impending evil and the cab driver (Bruce Willis) who joins the cause when she crash-lands in his taxi. Gary Oldman devours the scenery as the heavy and Chris Tucker reaches new vocal heights as futuristic celebrity Ruby Rhod. (126 mins., 35mm)