April 18, 2013

‘Green Days’ Eco Film Festival asks viewers to sit down and be counted

As part of our annual tradition, The Cape Ann Community Cinema again this year offers up The Green Days Eco Film Festival, a selection of eco-themed films to commemorate Earth Day:

CHASING ICE – The powerful and stunning documentary about polar ice loss has been a huge hit at the Cinema every time it has played, and returns for one final encore performance. Sat. Apr. 20 @ 2:30pm.

BIRDERS: THE CENTRAL PARK EFFECT – Discover the extraordinary array of wild birds who grace Manhattan’s celebrated patch of green, and the equally colorful New Yorkers who schedule their lives around the rhythms of migration. Author Jonathan Franzen, an idiosyncratic trombone technician, and a septuagenarian bird-tour leader are among the lively cast of characters in this charming, lyrical documentary that transports the viewer to the dazzling, hidden world of America’s most famous park. Sun. Apr. 21 @ 4:00pm. Hosted by Kestrel Educational Adventures.

BIDDER 70 -  Witness an extraordinary, ingenious and effective act of civil disobedience demanding government and industry accountability. In 2008, University of Utah economics student Tim DeChristopher committed an act which would redefine patriotism in our time, igniting a spirit of civil disobedience in the name of climate justice. Mon. Apr. 22 @ 6:30pm.

All tickets are $10.00 for adults, $8.50 for students & seniors (60+), and $7.00 for Cinema Members, and are available online at or at the box office.

Additionally, the Cinema will open ON THE ROAD, Walter Salles’s adaptation of Jack Keroauc’s famous novel, on Friday, April 19th, with show times Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm and Sunday at 6:30pm, with additional shows through next week. The Bolshoi Ballet comes to Gloucester on Sunday at 1:00pm with the stunning HD presentation of ESMERALDA. The acclaimed drama LIKE SOMEONE IN LOVE wraps its run, with shows on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 5:00pm. CHEECH & CHONG’S ANIMATED MOVIE plays Thursday the 18th at 7:30pm, with a special “420″ show on Saturday, April 20th at 10:30pm.

The Cape Ann Community Cinema is a living room-style movie theater in downtown Gloucester, and its full schedule through May 31 is listed online on its newly-revamped website at

April 11, 2013

THURS. APRIL 11 @ 7:30PM

THURS. APRIL 18 @ 7:30PM

THURS. APRIL 25 @ 7:30PM

THURS. MAY 2 @ 7:30PM

THURS. MAY 9 @ 7:30PM

THURS. MAY 16 @ 7:30PM

THURS. MAY 23 @ 7:30PM

February 22, 2013

Hello fans, friends, and fresh faces,

I have been inspired. I saw how the patrons of our sister cinema CinemaSalem recently came out in such loving force and donated the funds that our friends there needed to convert their three screens to digital (else face certain doom when the studios eventually stop producing exhibition prints of their movies on 35mm film). They raised the $60,000 they needed in less than two weeks. That’s grassroots in action. Everyone involved should be proud.

As many of you know, we have been digital from the very start. But that is not to say that we are the same kind of digital that avails to us every movie you’d like to see at the same time of a national release in all of the swanky, sterile, stadium-style theaters across the country. For that, we would have to mount a Kickstarter campaign like CinemaSalem did, as the cost of such a system – even one designed for a smaller screen like ours – would cost around the same price as a mid-priced SUV. That’s not exactly the kind of cash that an operation such as ours just has sitting around in surplus.

What would such an upgrade mean to all of us? That’s a good question, and here are some answers:

  1. We could offer you a considerably more comprehensive selection of films. This new proprietary, piracy-preventative, studio-standard system (known as DCP, for “Digital Cinema Package”) would allow us near-instant access to all the of the major studios’ “boutique” departments: Disney’s Miramax, Fox’s Searchlight, Universal’s Focus Features, and so on. Also, we could program the occasional blockbuster to service our seasonal sojourners. Come awards season, we could screen all of the nominated films, saving you multiple maddening trips Over-the-Cut and Up-the-Line. Additionally, we would be fully 3-D capable, which would allow us to bring more families into our space for weekend matinees and school vacations, as well as school groups to experience a wide variety of 3-D educational films.
  2. With this 3-D capability, we could finally produce our “Over Cape Ann” film in a spectacular format befitting of its dynamic nature, creating an evergreen piece of programming that would be exclusive to our theater. Plus, the flyover video that’s been playing on Cape Ann TV since 1988 looks like it was produced in 1988.
  3. Our screen would boast a more dynamic visual presentation. Presently, we project at full HD, which is 1920 x 1080 pixels, at an output of 4500 lumens (one lumen being equivalent to the light of one candle). That’s quite good, but with an upgrade, it would more than double to 9500 lumens. In scientific terms, that’s wicked friggin’ bright.
  4. Bringing more people through our doors would generate more revenue (and better insure our survival). This result would be evident the first time we program any film that you would normally have to travel to the Maul for. Generating more revenue would give us the necessary credibility with a lender to secure a mortgage so that by the middle of 2014, we could purchase the space in which we presently operate. Rent goes up every year, as do the condo fees and property taxes (which we pay, despite receiving no benefits of ownership), and we do not wish to face the day when expenses overtake revenues.

Not the projector to which we will upgrade.

The quiet fundraising campaign we undertook last year was also inspiring. Once I overcame my angst related to asking for financial help, the donations started to flow. You can actually see the results starting to take form – we installed our changeable-letter marquee panel today, and will have it lit shortly. We have started purchasing New Release DVDs on a regular basis. We hired a cleaning crew. I have been able to up the payroll expenditure and take some time to be with my new family. And that is just the start of what we have planned.

Apart from doubling our current revenue by the end of 2014, we also plan to start sharing our community cinema blueprint with other communities, as this thing we do is needed in so many other places the world over. Actually, we have already started this process. I was recently hired to help the folks at Mill No. 5 in Lowell to open a cinema much like ours, so come spring, we shall have another sister. Just call me Johnny Applescreen.

Thanks for taking the time to check in. We will keep you posted on our upcoming Kickstarter campaign.

I thank you for your continued support of This Thing We Do.



5 responses

  1. What a wonderful line-up!

  2. So enjoyed your radio interview on Radio Boston. You managed to put Gloucester at the center of the universe once again! Thank you many times over for your contribution to our seaside community.

  3. Thank you Rob for your inspired work, and bringing us such a unique cinema in our city.

  4. Rob, thank you for your dedicated creative effort which brings beautiful films to Cape Ann. Your little theater is a gem!

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