Sunday, July 8, 2012


Call it a mixed blessing, if you will, but the phenomenal success of the NW Film Center's annual Top Down rooftop cinema series has presented its organizers with a unique problem to solve.  Bottom line, the audience has outgrown the outdoor screen upon which the summertime screenings are projected.  It's reached the point where those unlucky enough to be at the back of the crowd have to squint in order to even be able to tell that there's a movie being projected at all.

As no doubt many of you are aware, the Film Center is a regional, non-profit media arts center, not exactly the kind of organization that tends to have much petty cash hidden away for emergencies of this variety.  Fortunately, we live in the age of crowd-funding where websites like Kickstarter or IndieGoGo allow individuals to throw down a few bones in support of the artists, organizations and causes they love. 

Can you tell where we're going with this?  Yes, Top Down needs your help to make this year's outdoor film series an enjoyable experience for all in attendance.  They've got a Kickstarter campaign in progress as well as a winning season of Thursday night screenings lined-up for Portland audiences.  A donation of any size will help ensure that the NW Film Center is able to reach their goal and purchase a screen large enough for all to experience a little cinema under the stars.

And what to expect of this year's films?  Well, as usual, it's an eclectic mix of crowd pleasers ranging from an old favorite from the great Preston Sturges to a campy children's entertainment starring Don Knotts.  Also on the schedule, one of local film hero Gus Van Sant's best films and a rock and roll musical for the new millennium.  All in all, a series of events worthy of your patronage.

Here, again, is the link for the fundraising campaign, complete with details of the different rewards available for each level of support.  This link will allow you to peruse the specifics of this year's schedule.  And, because who doesn't love trailers, here are the coming attractions:

The NW Film Center's Top Down rooftop cinema series kicks off on Thursday, July 26th at the Hotel deLuxe's parking garage (located at SW 15th & Yamhill).  The opening night film is Preston Sturges' 1942 screwball comedy The Palm Beach Story.

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