The Philadelphia Film Festival turns 25 this month, and that means a full 10 days crammed with some of the most heralded films from the last year (along with a sprinkling of classics) showing right here in town. While general admission to the opening celebration on October 20 costs $250, tickets to individual screenings cost only $13 — or a little less than what you would pay for any ordinary night at the multiplex.
That’s worth it for a lineup consisting of more than 150 titles showcasing some of the best filmmaking from around the world. Notable programs within the festival include a spotlight on new French directors, a focus on American independents, and an exploration of rockumentaries, rock star biopics, and other movies about music. But there’s far too much to include in this post, so go and check out the full schedule.
Getting ready for Halloween
October is a prime season for horror, and the city’s biggest purveyors of the genre are ready to deliver. First, on October 13, CineMug will show Dead Alive, an indulgent early effort by Peter Jackson, when the future Lord of the Rings director made indie splatter films. The following week, on October 20, the coffee shop will screen Re-Animator, a 1985 horror/comedy cult classic based on an H.P. Lovecraft story about headless bodies brought back to life. Admission costs $4 for Dead Alive and $5 for Re-Animator. Each screening has a $2 BYOB corking fee.
Across town on October 14, PhilaMOCA will host a (rare) family-friendly program of Halloween specials, commercials, and short films on its rooftop. But on October 23, the venue will return to form with I Drink Your Blood, a 1971 B-movie about murderous hippies tripping on acid. Tickets to each screening cost $10.
Finally, Cinema Ray will continue a series of essential horror films from the silent era, each accompanied by a live score at the Ruba Club. The selections — The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Inferno, and Nosferatu — will screen on subsequent Wednesdays until October 26. Tickets cost $10. Cinema Ray will also show The Tingler, a 1959 Vincent Price vehicle, at Eris Temple Arts on October 22 for $8.
Philly docs on TV
Starting this week, Scribe Video Center will partner with WHYY-TV for a weekly broadcast of documentaries made by Philadelphians who seek to highlight important landmarks in their neighborhoods. Tune into channel 12 on Tuesday, October 11 at 11pm to catch the first three installments, which will explore the cultural legacies behind Fairmount Park’s Belmont Plateau, the Tindly Temple United Methodist Church on South Broad Street, and the now-closed William Penn High School. The program, which includes 79 docs in total, will air every Tuesday and repeat on Sundays at 12:30pm.