• New season of Friday Flicks at The Varsity begins Jan. 18 with ‘Selma’

    January 08, 2019
    After a successful fall and holiday Friday night movie run, The Varsity is ready to resume Friday Flicks on Jan. 18. Films in the Friday Flicks group are mainstream movies, from classic black-and-white to more recent blockbusters.

    All showings begin at 7. Tickets are $7 or $5 for students. They are available in advance at thevarsitycenter.eventbrite.com and at the venue when doors open; they are not available in advance at the venue. Doors and bar open at 6:30.

    Those who are unable to reach The Balcony, where Friday Flicks are shown, will be admitted free and invited to watch the movie on a 60-inch HDTV in the Varsity Bar.

    Here’s the lineup through February; synopsis are from rottentomatoes.com:

    “Selma,” Jan. 18: The 2015 film chronicles the tumultuous three-month period in 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (portrayed by David Oyelowo) led a dangerous campaign to secure equal voting rights in the face of violent opposition. The epic march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama, culminated in President Lyndon Johnson (Tom Wilkinson) signing the Voting Rights Act of 1965, one of the most significant victories for the civil rights movement. (Rated PG-13 for disturbing thematic material including violence, a suggestive moment, and brief strong language.)

    “Labyrinth,” Jan 25: Teenager Sarah is forced by her father and her stepmother to babysit her baby brother, Toby. Toby won’t stop crying and Sarah wishes her brother would be taken by the Goblin King. Out of the blue, Toby stops crying and when Sarah looks for him in the cradle, she learns that her wish was granted, and the Goblin King, Jareth, has taken him to his castle in Goblin City in the middle of a labyrinth. Soon, Sarah teams up with the coward goblin Hoggle, the beast Ludo, the knight Didymus and his dog, Ambrosius, in her journey to rescue Toby. The 1986 film was directed by Jim Henson and stars David Bowie and Jennifer Connelly. (PG)

    “Groundhog Day,” Feb 1: Back at The Varsity for the second time, 1993’s “Groundhog Day” stars Bill Murray as Phil, a TV weatherman working for a local station in Pennsylvania but convinced that national news stardom is in his grasp. Phil displays a charm and wit on camera that evaporates the moment the red light goes off; he is bitter, appallingly self-centered, and treats his co-workers with contempt, especially his producer Rita (Andie MacDowell) and cameraman Larry (Chris Elliot). On February 2, 1992, the team is sent on an assignment Phil loathes: the annual Groundhog Day festivities in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, where the groundhog determines the length of winter. A freak snowstorm strands Phil in Punxsutawney, and where every morning he wakes up, he seems to be living the same day over again. The more Phil relives the same day, the more he's forced to look at other people's lives, and something unusual happens: he begins to care. (PG for some thematic elements)

    “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” Feb. 8: George Roy Hill’s 1969 Western chronicles the mostly true tale of the Hole in the Wall Gang’s last months. Witty pals Butch (Paul Newman) and Sundance (Robert Redford) join the gang in successfully robbing yet another train with their trademark non-lethal style. After the pair rests at the home of Sundance's schoolmarm girlfriend, Etta (Katharine Ross), the Gang robs the same train, but this time, the railroad boss has hired the best trackers in the business to foil the crime. After being tailed over rocks and a river gorge, Butch and Sundance decide that maybe it's time to try their luck in Bolivia. Taking Etta with them, they live high on ill-gotten Bolivian gains, but Etta leaves after their white-hatted nemesis portentously arrives. Their luck running out, Butch and Sundance hole up in a barn surrounded by scores of Bolivian soldiers waiting for the pair to make one last run for it. (PG)

    “Some Like It Hot,” Feb. 15: Two Struggling musicians witness the St. Valentine's Day Massacre and are now on the run from the mob. Jerry and Joe cross-dress into an all-female band. In addition to hiding, each has his own problems; one falls for another band member but can't tell her his gender, and the other has a rich suitor who will not take "no" for an answer. The classic, black-and-white, John Huston-directed film stars Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon and Marilyn Monroe. (G)

    Big Muddy Film Festival, Feb. 18-24: The Varsity will be the main venue for screening festival movies or shorts, and will feature an event every night of the festival except Saturday. The opening reception and film will be at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18. Other screenings include “Afterward,” a timely and fearless personal documentary, in which director Ofra Bloch attempts to live with the truths of history in order to make sense of the present. (7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 19) For festival films, screening locations and times and synopses of the festival films, go to bigmuddyfilm.com.