This Week At The Cinema: Americana At The Orpheum


It's July 4th week, and the place to be is Memphis' grande dame of theaters, The Orpheum.
Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum battle aliens in Independence Day.
  • Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum battle aliens in Independence Day.
Tonight, the greatest of the Clinton-era disaster schlockfests, Independence Day, is your warmup for the 4th. With a circa-1996 state of the art special effects that still pretty much hold up and a complete howler of a script that never held up, its best assets are a high-dollar cast led by Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum in their respective primes. Here's the famous scene with President Bill Pullman rallying the troops.

Speaking of speeches, on Friday, July 6th, The Orpheum celebrates America with one of the great speechifying movies of all time. Frank Capra's Mr. Smith Goes To Washington is the film that made Jimmy Stewart a star in 1939. It's the classic tale of a small town Boy Scout leader who, almost by accident, ends up being appointed to a vacant Senate seat by an indecisive governor. Senator Jefferson Smith stands up for the little guy with a filibuster for the ages. Nowadays, all Senators have to do to gum up the works is announce they're going to filibuster, but I think it would be a better world all around if they had to actually get up and emulate Jimmy Stewart for days on end.

Tickets to both screenings are available on the Orpheum Theatre website.

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