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Popcorn & Prejudice: A Movie Blog

Seattle Times writer Moira Macdonald muses on moviegoing. Email Moira: mmacdonald@seattletimes.com.

August 15, 2011 at 3:31 PM

Outdoor movies, as summer winds down

For those of us in the Seattle area, summer never really wound up this year (did it ever hit, oh, 85 degrees? I think not), but that’s fine by me. Nonetheless, the end of summer does mean the end of a seasonal pleasure: outdoor movies, shown on a blocked-off street or a parking lot or park meadow, with a picnic on a blanket and a sweater handy for when darkness brings cooler air. I haven’t been to any outdoor screenings lately (blame the weather), but I do have some fond memories of movies I watched outdoors; most notably at the Port Townsend Film Festival, where I remember sitting on a staircase and watching Audrey Hepburn’s glorious face, so many times larger than life, in “Roman Holiday,” or hearing that train chug along as Eva Marie Saint (a festival guest some years back) and Cary Grant bantered at their dining-car table in “North by Northwest.”
Here’s a nice New York Times piece about outdoor movie screenings in Manhattan’s Bryant Park; I love the photo, as moviegoers race to claim spots on the grass just as park staff give the OK. I don’t think we have security checks and thousands of people showing up for outdoor movies here in the Pacific Northwest — but, should you wish to find out for yourself, here’s the local outdoor-movies schedule. Anyone have a favorite outdoor-movie memory? Or know a movie that’s better if you see it outdoors?

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