Thursday, July 8, 2010

Annie Hall

I realize that its a bit radical to write about an event before it takes place, but it was 90 degrees out before breakfast and I'm feeling a bit daring. What one has to do with the other, I do not know, but we all seem to be blaming the heat these days, and it feels good to use it to my advantage.

At any rate, tonight marks the first evening of Movies With A View at Pier 1 of Brooklyn Bridge Park, and the first film, Annie Hall, is one of my favorites. I have seen this movie more times than is probably normal, I own it, and therefore will not be disappointed by the movie itself. I also won't be disappointed by the view, the food, and the company. A good night ahead, no doubt.

I first saw Annie Hall during the spring of my senior year of college when my little sister and I discovered a treasure trove of videos for rent at the Northfield Public Library in our sleepy college town. I distinctly remember renting The Big Chill, Beach Party, Beach Blanket Bingo, The Philadelphia Story, and Annie Hall on VHS before a trip to Jess's cabin in Wisconsin with my best college girlfriends. I was in charge of bringing movies, and while they were probably expecting something from, well, 2006, they humored me with my choices.

Looking back, it was one of the best trips we ever had together, there in the middle of the Wisconsin lake country in a cabin fitted with window beds and a cupboard filled with cookie ingredients, real maple syrup, and strong coffee. For most of the weekend, Kira and I danced along with Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon while Jess made cookies and Lauren studied her Computer Science textbook. Cheridyn was finishing up her independent study on world religions, and I remember not packing any textbooks to speak of.

I read The Bell Jar for the first time on the back deck, we cooked pancakes for breakfast, and talked about our BIG LIVES ahead. We watched all of my movies, smooshed into big leather couches with quilts to our chins. The Big Chill hushed us into reality, The Philadelphia Story made us swoon, and Beach Party made us groan in unison (I still love those beach movies, though, they remind me of my mom).

But Annie Hall... Annie Hall made me dream of New York. I watched it over and over those last few weeks of college, scared to death that I had made the wrong decision in not coming right away. I watched it the next year too, in Indiana, when I frantically counted down the days until I could drop my lease and make the jump to a city where I didn't have a job, or friends, or any real plan. I remember sneering at the massive Midwestern parking lots and cheesy condo swimming pools and wanting desperately to be here, in Brooklyn, in a tiny apartment stuffed with houseplants and books and loud cookware, and a rooftop just like Annie Hall and Alvy Singer had. Heaven, this film. Over thought, over analyzed, wordy, Woody Allen-esque heaven.

Well, a year later, I was here, in New York, in a tiny apartment on the Upper West Side. I bought a black turtleneck and striped scarf like Annie Hall wore and started to carve out my own story on this island. That first month after moving here I found Movies with A View listed on a free website of sorts and made my way down to the Brooklyn Waterfront with a blanket and a picnic, and not a friend to speak of.

I watched the sunset over Manhattan, and observed happy couples and groups of girlfriends playing cards, and delighted in every detail. I loved it. (Lurve it, actually. Loave it. I luff it, with two F's.) I still do. And I'm luckily enough to now attend the movies with friends who have become part of my own New York story. In fact, Alison actually runs this event now! Imagine that! It's a great list of films this year, and took A LOT of planning, so come join us, New York. You'll lurve it.

Movies with a View Schedule:
Thursday, July 8
Annie Hall

Thursday, July 15
Monsters vs. Aliens

Thursday, July 22
The Big Lebowski

Thursday, July 29
Rear Window

Thursday, August 5
Brokeback Mountain

Thursday, August 12

Thursday, August 19
The Blues Brothers

Thursday, August 26
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade


greg said...

hope to see you there

B Butler said...

You'll miss rear window!

La said...

How have I not seen Annie Hall? Just added it to my Netfilx disappointed it's not on instant!

La said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gail said...

I still have the Beach Party album in the basement!!!