We as writers and editors appreciate how respect for narrative storytelling can bring people together and reshape our horizons. This process is universal, whether it’s with words written on a page, or a screenplay brought to life by the flickering light of a movie projector. No matter the medium, all stories are written, edited, and shared to bring us closer together in experiencing them. The Coolidge Corner Theater, in Brookline, is a fantastic example of that mission.
The Coolidge does much more than show cult midnight movies. Its offerings are interdisciplinary, right down to the foundations. The theater was originally built as a church in 1906 and converted into a movie theater in 1933. They became a nonprofit in 1989 and have remained one since then. Their calendar includes showings of silent films with live accompanying orchestral scores, an education series where documentaries are paired with Q and A sessions with leading researchers, live dance performances, international indie films, and even a baby-friendly movie night where the sound is turned down and the house lights left on. The common element is the creation of a diverse community centered around the theater.
The Coolidge reminds you that you’re not alone in wanting something more than the standard “Regal Cinema experience.” With the analog projector and the art-deco architecture of the theater, the Coolidge attracts a vibrant community of people gathered to appreciate a piece of art and narrative storytelling.
Before many midnight showings, Mark Anastasio, the program manager and director of special programming, gives a short talk, reminding the audience how special it is to see a movie on “beautiful” 35 mm film or to be able to see a cult classic decades after its original release. However, he ends each talk with a call to action. “Tell your friends to come!” He exclaims excitedly. “We’re a nonprofit!”