Thursday, October 15, 2015

Movie Madness

This morning I (Rosie) went to check out the Museum of the Moving Image while Sarah stayed and did some writing. The collection was excellent and the exhibits well done. They have thousands of historic objects, including antique movie cameras, projectors, editing machines; the mask worn by Peter Mayhew when he played Chewbacca in the original Star Wars, Larry Hagman’s hat from his role as J.R. Ewing in the TV show “Dallas”, and an outfit worn by Robin Williams as Mrs. Doubtfire.

For anyone who has very little idea what goes into the making of a movie, this museum would be a great way to learn. It’s got a lot of hands-on exhibits. Even though I’ve been behind the scenes, I still found myself caught up in their displays. I got to play with a working Zoetrope, one of the early precursors of movies. And I got to try my hand at doing some ADR (automatic dialogue replacement), aka dubbing – recording my voice over Dorothy’s in a scene from The Wizard of Oz. That was fun! I also finally learned how they do live “editing” of television, on the fly, as the action occurs. They had a display showing the TV reporting for a baseball game, and how the director calls the instructions to get ready and then switch from camera 1 to 6 to 10, etc., as he’s watching the feeds from all of them simultaneously. It was mind-boggling how much rapid mental processing that must require.

They also had an exhibit called "How Cats Took Over the Internet" which was a purrfect way to end my visit.

In the afternoon we both went to see a matinee of “The Walk” (directed by Robert Zemeckis) at Kaufman Astoria 14, a multiplex theatre right near Kaufman Astoria studios (“the Hollywood of the East Coast”) and the Museum of the Moving Image which I’d seen earlier today. It was exceedingly disappointing. I much preferred “Man on Wire” – the 2008 documentary which tells the same story (of Philippe Petit, the high-wire artist who covertly set up and walked a tightrope between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in 1974). I have no idea why they felt the story needed to be retold as a drama. I won’t bore you with my critique, but Sarah and I spent all of dinner picking apart the film’s weaknesses. We had dinner at a nearby Pizzeria Uno’s, the celebrated Chicago Deep Dish pizza place. It was yummy. There was a PaintNite event going on at a group of tables near us, which was interesting to observe. I’d heard about those before but have never participated in one.

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