Who’s afraid of Mary Poppins?
Bring a blanket and warm jacket, and lie in the grass at Wingfield Park for Movies in the Park. These flicks are free, family-friendly, and one of them shows each Friday night in July. Bob Grimm, perhaps the only man to be afraid of Mary Poppins, reminds you what they’re about.
Beauty and the Beast Before Pixar got super fancy with the computer animation, Disney made a real splash with this old school classic. Scoring an Oscar nomination for Best Picture before the Academy decided to make a Best Animated Film category, the tale of Belle and the Beast can be slotted right alongside Pinocchio and Snow White as an all-time Disney best. It still surprises me that Robby Benson, the guy from Ode to Billy Joe and Ice Castles, voiced the Beast. He also played the boy tossing a ball in Wait Until Dark. Bet you didn’t know that. July 3, 9-11 p.m.
North By Northwest One of Hitchcock’s best, this story of an ad executive being mistaken for a spy contains one of the great performances by Cary Grant. It also has that infamous crop-dusting plane scene. Even more, it has one of the greatest onscreen bloopers to ever make the final cut of a film. It’s the scene where somebody is about to shoot Cary Grant at Mount Rushmore. A little kid sticks his fingers in his ears because he knows the blanks being used are loud. Want to have fun? You and your friends should shout “Hurray!” when this happens during the screening. On second thought, don’t. It is a movie screening, and people will throw things at you. July 10, 9 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Stop Making Sense Directed by Jonathan Demme, this Talking Heads concert film is a true stunner. Make sure to wear one of those oversized jackets David Byrne sports in the film, and do a weird dance when “Psycho Killer” comes on. Hard to believe this movie is 25 years old! Then again, people might throw things at you. July 17, 9 p.m - 11 p.m.
Mr. Holland’s Opus I had a high school band teacher who was just like Richard Dreyfuss in this movie. He wanted to do bigger things in the music field and claimed to have played clarinet in many Broadway shows. I would bet this story of a high school orchestra teacher ultimately finding major satisfaction as a teacher hit home for him. Enjoy this one in the park, but don’t bring musical instruments and try to play along with Mr. Holland’s big orchestra piece near the end. It is a movie screening, and people will throw things at you. July 24, 9 p.m. - 11:30 p.m.
Mary Poppins While this one goes down just fine as an adult, it used to scare the heck out of me when I was a kid. It actually made me afraid of babysitters. I hated the part where Mary looked in the mirror, and her reflection had a life of its own. I also didn’t like when she blew all the people down the street. I thought she was killing them. On the lighter side, I always thought Dick Van Dyke and the penguins were cool. July 31, 9 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.