This fall, Wednesdays will remain weird at Mason Park.
For fans of cult and exploitation cinema, nothing beats the joy of discovery. Whether it’s learning about a film you've never heard of, watching it for the first time and having your mind blown by this previously unknown cinematic masterpiece or learning some new detail about a film on your 50th viewing, there’s something exciting about rolling up your sleeves and digging into the sleaze of good exploitation cinema. We’re very happy to do our part for Houston’s film community in offering up a weekly affordable series that showcases the best cult cinema classics on the big screen, presented from original 35mm prints.
Starting September, admission to Weird Wednesday will cost $3. To afford to bring Houston audiences a continual stream of new films from the depths of the American Genre Film Archive, we’ve had to raise our ticket price a bit but we think you’ll agree that $3 is more than a fair price to pay for the type of entertainment we promise on a weekly basis.
From horror films to martial arts showcases to women in prison flicks to oddities from around the world, Weird Wednesday is a hub for Houston film fans to gather in a darkened cinema and either discover a new film or revisit a beloved classic – all without the worry of having some jackass in the third row shout unfunny comments as if he was auditioning for Mystery Science Theater 3000.
We brought Weird Wednesdays back to Houston this summer and we are committed to continuing the series throughout the fall. A few technical glitches have kept us from updating our web calendar but we have a full line-up for September:
Director Brian Trenchard-Smith has been turning out low budget films for a lot longer than most Weird Wednesday attendees have been alive. He has worked in nearly every genre, created a few genres of his own and always managed to put forth at least a solid product. In fact, the mantle of professional competence rests so easily on his brow that he usually has time to give us a little something more than we expect. So this PG-rated kids film featuring Nicole Kidman in her first role is somehow more than the sum of its parts. Bike chases that would normally be done in paint-by-numbers style by bored hacks emerge as pure cinema as Trenchard-Smith applies the techniques and experience he’d honed to perfection in such ragers as THE MAN FROM HONG KONG and STUNT ROCK. Of course it’s silly - it’s about three kids who find a case of stolen walkie talkies and enlist the aid of Sydney’s BMX community to fight the mob--but it has a kind of tough sweetness too. The material with the young heroes is never condescending (Kidman in particular is excellent) and the action sequences have the ramshackle chaotic energy of the silent cinema. That’s a compliment. (Lars)
William Girdler was a man's man, a consummate filmmaker and a 30-year-old fatality in a helicopter mishap. Fortunately, he'd already firmly established himself as a raging visionary (and an enemy of Mother Nature) with films like DAY OF THE ANIMALS and his artistic pinnacle: GRIZZLY. An indestructible two-story-tall grizzly bear has realized that human beef beats the hell out of nuts and berries, and it's up to Ranger Mike (GATES OF HELL's Christopher George) and hotheaded gunman Don (Andrew Prine of SIMON, KING OF THE WITCHES) to bring the carnivorous menace to its hairy knees. But when a couple dozen drunk-ass hunters enter the forest on a suicide mission to nail the beast...count on significant bloodshed. (Zack)
Nothing’s more satisfying than shooting someone in the dick with a crossbow. Especially if they’ve beaten your deaf-mute sister into a coma and thrown your pregnant friend off a freeway overpass. We’ve all been there, and Linda Blair was right there with us, suited up in a skintight leather jumpsuit and stacking up lowlife corpses like ham on a deli tray. At a moment in history when antisocial cinema had seemingly reached its zenith, SAVAGE STREETS burst forward to obliterate any remaining humanity in a torrid vigilante eruption of back alley brutality and unredeemable filth. This amped-up ‘80s revenge fantasy is grimier than a wino’s tongue and twice as hard to swallow; a squalid, emotionally involving feature that - despite Blair’s wardrobe - evokes scum rather than lurid sleaze. As with the era’s other fine, penis-shriveling anti-sexploitation films (ANGEL; VICE SQUAD), the only thing aroused here will be your suicidal impulse. (Zack)
On September 26, Weird Wednesdays will take a break for a special free screening of HORROR REMIX: HAIRY. If you are a fan of cinematic trips through the wildest and weirdest avenues of filmmaking, you won’t want to pass up an opportunity to see any of these films on the big screen. Spread the word! Tell your friends, your family and your fellow movie freaks: Weird Wednesday is the only place to get your cult cinema fix in Houston.