Everyone knows that the massive red-curtained screen, refurbished seats that embrace your ass like a velvet glove and finely pruned beer and wine garden makes Hollywood Theatre the best place to experience film in Portland. What some people might not realize is that under the watchful eye of Executive Director Doug Whyte, the Hollywood has become much more than a movie theater and everyone's favorite living room away from home. It has become an invaluable stronghold of creativity and inspiration in the sea of bullshit that is Portland these days. To be sure, there's a lot to bitch about in Portland these days. But the Hollywood Theatre sure ain't one of 'em. Doug and his crew are visionary patrons of the arts. They are supportive of new ideas, challenging programming and a radical reimagining of what community theater can and should be. You should be proud of that and you should support it with your money or your time as a volunteer (those people serving you beer don't get paid, so treat them right and fucking TIP!).
Remember when the great John Fassano (R.I.P.) came and introduced Black Roses? Genius! Remember when Thor came and introduced Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare and then performed a bunch of songs on stage while the audience screamed, "ENERRRRGYYYYY!!!!"? An invincible evening. Maybe you saw Nina Simone's incendiary 1976 performance in Montreux or were lucky enough to experience Fred and Toody Cole blasting through an acoustic career retrospective live on stage after a screening of the Dead Moon documentary or caught The Secret Life of Plants and learned about "ecstatic truth" from my good friend Eric Isaacson? Were you there when WYRD WAR got to invade the Hollywood with Halloween 3 on 35mm and horror soundtrack composer Alan Howarth performed his music live on stage? Someday we might look back on this moment of Portland's ugly transformation and recognize the Hollywood Theatre for what it is. It is the CBGBs of contemporary Portland. It is the fuckin' Weimar of the Pacific Northwest Republic.
What the hell was I even talking about? Oh yeah, so tonight Hollywood Theater's sleaziest curator and my esteemed colleague, Mr. Dan Halsted, proudly presents what is rumored to be the only surviving 35mm print of THE MAN FROM HONG KONG with...wait for it...director Brian Trenchard-Smith in attendance! That's right. The man responsible for Stunt Rock, Turkey Shoot, BMX Bandits, Dead End Drive-In and Leprechaun 3 is in Portland tonight! In the spirit of total confession, I've never even seen The Man From Hong Kong. I guess I could've watched it on Youtube so I had something smart to write here, but that would've felt like cheating and after all the drugs I consumed Saturday night I really can't look at a computer screen for 90 minutes anyway. I did watch the trailer and I know we're in for some classy 70s culture wars, barrel-chested male chauvinism, exploding car crashes, awkward dialogue and enough 10 minute fight scenes to require multiple trips to the beer garden. The poster says it's "FAST! FANTASTIC! FUN!" Whatever. See you tonight. DO NOT MISS THIS!!!!