CATEGORIES Summer Movies


In the summertime, you'll have to head to a movie theater for the big, new blockbusters -- but one could argue that the best place to watch a movie is actually outdoors, in the open air. After all, what could be better than the stars on the big screen, mingled with the stars in the sky?

And that's why for many New Yorkers and visitors to NYC, the HBO Bryant Park Summer Film Festival -- held every year in Bryant Park in midtown Manhattan -- marks the true start of the summer movie season. This year's lineup includes, as always, an impressive array of classics, from the thrills of 'Rosemary's Baby' to the inspired silliness of 'Monty Python and the Holy Grail' to the crime-spree capers of 'Bonnie and Clyde.'

Check out the schedule for the entire film festival below, grab your blanket and your picnic basket, and we'll see you at the movies .... in Bryant Park.

In the summertime, you'll have to head to a movie theater for the big, new blockbusters -- but one could argue that the best place to watch a movie is actually outdoors, in the open air. After all, what could be better than the stars on the big screen, mingled with the stars in the sky?

And that's why for many New Yorkers and visitors to NYC, the HBO Bryant Park Summer Film Festival -- held every year in Bryant Park in midtown Manhattan -- marks the true start of the summer movie season. This year's lineup includes, as always, an impressive array of classics, from the thrills of 'Rosemary's Baby' to the inspired silliness of 'Monty Python and the Holy Grail' to the crime-spree capers of 'Bonnie and Clyde.'

Check out the schedule for the entire film festival below, grab your blanket and your picnic basket, and we'll see you at the movies .... in Bryant Park.

Where: The park is located between 40th and 42nd streets and Fifth and Sixth avenues. View map

When: Summer Mondays -- lawn opens at 5PM and films start rolling 30 minutes after sunset.

Restrooms: Starting at 7PM, Bryant Park's restrooms are for women only. Both ladies and gentlemen can use portable facilities on 40th Street.

Nearest Subway Stops: The F, V, B, D (42/Bryant Park) and 7 (5th Avenue) trains stop directly below the park. Times Square and Grand Central Terminal are also within a short walk.

What to Bring: If you want to watch from the lawn, bring a blanket and arrive early. Or you can watch from the sidelines in one of the 4,000 park chairs.

Pack a picnic or partake of the on-site food choices available, including Bryant Park Grill/Café and the 'wichcraft food kiosks for sandwiches, ice cream and more.

Bring your bike and park for free in the park at 6th Avenue and 41st Street.

What Not to Bring: No dogs, tables, chairs, plastic sheets or tarps of any kind are allowed on the lawn. Drugs, alcohol, musical instruments and radios/CD players are forbidden as well.

Official Site: www.bryantpark.org


Goldfinger 'GOLDFINGER'
Showing: June 21
What It's About:
Sean Connery stars as 007 in #003 of the James Bond series. Considered one of the best of all Bonds, it was loosely adapted from Ian Fleming's 1959 novel. The author visited the set, but unfortunately died before the film was released. The villains Goldfinger (Gert Frobe, a former Nazi Party member) and Oddjob (Harold Sakata, a 284 lb. Hawaiian and Olympic medalist) are two of our hero's most enduring adversaries. As for the ladies, Shirley Eaton is the beauty gilded to death, Shirley Bassey belts the title song and Honor Blackman gains immortality as Pussy Galore. (MGM, 1964) 111 Min.

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Carousel'CAROUSEL'
Showing:
June 28
What It's About:
"June is bustin' out all over" sings the chorus in this beloved (if darker than usual) Rodgers and Hammerstein collaboration. Shiftless carnival barker Billy Bigelow returns to earth from purgatory to right some of the wrongs done during his lifetime. Adapted from a 1945 Broadway triumph, the musical features timeless standards, with 'You'll Never Walk Alone' topping the hit parade. Shirley Jones plays good girl Julie who is married to bad boy Billy. Tenor Gordon MacRae replaced Frank Sinatra as Bigelow, when Ol' Blue Eyes walked out. (Fox, 1956) 128 Min. CinemaScope.

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French Connection'THE FRENCH CONNECTION'
Showing: July 5
What It's About: Popeye Doyle (based on real-life character Eddie Egan) is a tough-as-nails, obsessive, foul-mouthed, racist, New York narcotics detective. Good cop/bad cop, all in one. On the trail of drug smuggling continentals, Popeye and his partner will get their men or die trying. The gritty, often harsh, crime drama won Oscars and Golden Globes for Best Picture, Best Actor (Gene Hackman) and Best Director (William Friedkin). It may be best remembered for a white-knuckle car/subway chase through Brooklyn and the phrase "Picking your feet in Poughkeepsie." (Fox, 1971) 104 Min.

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My Man Godfrey'MY MAN GODFREY'
Showing: July 12
What It's About: During a scavenger hunt, a ditzy society girl finds a "forgotten man" in a garbage dump and hires him as her wealthy family's butler. He learns quickly how to "butle," but there's more to Godfrey than meets the eye. This brisk and breezy screwball comedy is laced with trenchant Great Depression-era social commentary. William Powell and Carole Lombard, divorced from each other three years before the movie was made, were both Oscar-nominated. In 2006, Premiere Magazine voted "Godfrey" one of "The 50 Greatest Comedies" of all time. (Universal, 1936) 95 Min.

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China Syndrome'THE CHINA SYNDROME'
Showing: July 19
What It's About: Jane Fonda (ambitious TV reporter), Michael Douglas (scruffy cameraman) and Jack Lemmon (conscientious whistle blower) star in this topical suspense tale. What happens when the three good guys set out to expose an attempted cover-up of an accident in a nuclear power plant? The artifice of TV and journalistic integrity are subtexts, but 'China' never loses sight of its thriller roots. Film was released just two weeks prior to the real-life disaster at Three Mile Island. Now that's scary. (Sony/Col, 1979) 123 Min.

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Monty Python'MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL'
Showing: July 26
What It's About: The irreverent, mad men of British TV made the leap to big screen comedy, without missing a laugh. King Arthur and his knights are on a quest for the ever-elusive Grail. Plenty of silliness, a couple of songs and some distinctive animation are encountered along the way. John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, Graham Chapman and Eric Idle are those responsible for the hilarity. Gilliam and Jones co-directed and to quote their own tagline... "Makes 'Ben Hur' look like an Epic." (Python [Monty] Pictures, 1975) 86 Min. Special thanks to the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) East Coast.

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Rosemary's Baby'ROSEMARY'S BABY'
Showing: August 2
What It's About: After a young couple (Mia Farrow and John Cassavetes) moves into a gothic Manhattan apartment building (filmed at the famed Dakota), she becomes pregnant. An elderly neighbor (Oscar-winner Ruth Gordon) takes undue interest in her prenatal care. Beware of herbal drinks and chocolate mousse offered by little old ladies! From a bestseller by Ira Levin, here is psychological suspense at it's best. Director Roman Polanski made a spooky horror film with no gore and no blood, expect for a plate of raw meat. (Paramount, 1968) 136 Min.

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Goodbye Girl'THE GOODBYE GIRL'
Showing: August 9
What It's About: Richard Dreyfuss won an Oscar for his endearing turn as Elliot, a struggling New York actor who finds himself saddled with two unwanted roommates ... an unemployed dancer (Marsha Mason) and her precocious 10-year-old daughter (Quinn Cummings). It's loath at first sight for this odd couple plus one, but, as in all good romantic comedies, love conquers all before "The End." Neil Simon later adapted his wisecracking screenplay into a Broadway musical starring Bernadette Peters and Martin Short. (Warner Bros.,1977) 110 Min

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12 Angry Men'12 ANGRY MEN'
Showing: August 16
What It's About: Henry Fonda is the lone holdout on a jury during a murder trial. There are 11 "guilty" votes, but juror #8 thinks their verdict may have been reached in haste. Can he convince his fellow jurors to reconsider before passing sentence, as a man's life hangs in the balance? A kinescope version of Reginald Rose's economical script was made for TV in 1954. Fonda himself co-produced this expanded film version, which turned out to be an auspicious directional debut for Sidney Lumet. It remains compelling and provocative today, Your Honor. (MGM, 1957) 95 Min.

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Bonnie and Clyde'BONNIE AND CLYDE'
Showing: August 23
What It's About: Meet Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker. They rob banks. Explosive (if romanticized) crime drama, set during the Depression, follows the Barrow gang's crime sprees from Kansas to Texas. Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty were blessed with their juiciest roles yet, but Oscars went to the cinematography and to supporting actress Estelle Parsons. A career launcher for Parsons, it also showcased another newcomer, Gene Wilder. Director Arthur Penn made his mark with one of the most influential movies of the 1960's and that legendary climax became the stuff of cinematic lore. (Warner Bros., 1967) 111 Min.

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