We try not to be very controversial in our blog because, let’s face it, we don’t have many readers. If we take a controversial position, someone is bound to take offense and stop reading our blogs. But due to recent events we feel the need to take a stand on an important issue of our time—the elimination of 35 mm movies by digital technology.
It all started when we decided to see if we could find a movie theater to visit on a drizzly day earlier this week. We were staying at Occoneechee State Park in rural southern Virginia, but we searched on Google Maps and found a theater about 30 minutes away. Clicking on their web site to check the movie schedule, Ed found that they had been showing Baggage Claim and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 since September 27th but they did not list what was currently showing. Ed called the theater, expecting to get a recording of the movie schedule, but instead got the owner.
The owner told Ed that they were still showing the same two movies but, for the last three days (12 showings), they had nobody in the theater. He explained that almost all movies are now being made with digital cameras, with limited copies of the movies being converted into 35 mm film for use in theaters such as his, which only have 35 mm film projectors. As a result, he currently has difficulty acquiring new movies to show and, in the future, he may be out of business.
This is not an isolated issue. Remember the drive-in movie theater we went to in Marion, VA as mentioned in a previous blog? They are trying to raise $100,000 to convert to a digital projection system because of the same issue. According to their web site, they have raised about $17,000 toward their goal.
You may ask: “Why should I care if these small-town movie theaters go out of business?” Well, we have been in these towns and there’s not a lot happening. If teenage boys do not have a movie theater to take their dates to, what are they going to do? They’ll probably hang out with the guys and get into trouble, leading to a life of crime and, possibly, heading to a city near you. What can you do? The local theater here is waiting for “a sign from a burning bush” but the Marion drive-in is fund-raising–you can donate on their web site at www.parkplacedrivein.com.
Speaking of film (how’s that for a segue?), Ed learned a lot about photography from his father, including how to develop 35 mm color film. Of course, digital camera photography has already replaced 35 mm film, leading to the downfall of Kodak. However, the best advice from Ed’s Dad was the secret of good photography–take lots of photos and throw away the bad ones. Here are the photos we had left this week after throwing away most of them.
Patty hiking in the rain—are we having fun yet?
Not one but two snakes crossed our path while we hiked—harmless but Patty was not happy to see them.
More advice for dealing with bears from a sign in the park—we don’t have a bell or whistle but we are working on screaming in low tones (it’s hard to do—try it).
Children of the Corn 2—Patty after the harvest.
Ed kayaking on Buggs Lake–one of the best things about kayaking is the view of the sky on a beautiful day.
Ed loves the sky…
Ed closes in on Patty who is recuperating from her neck and back problems, and avoiding kayaking based on recommendations from her physical therapist.
Ed loves the sky (part 2)…
A sign of fall—we have been looking forward to fall colors for several weeks but we always seem to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Maybe next week…
Patty finds the only sunny spot in our campsite to relax and read.
A sad Saturday afternoon for Ed—avoiding the cold and drizzly weather, doing laundry, and checking our smart phone to discover the Gators losing to Missouri. He is looking forward to rooting for our future hometown team—UNC-Asheville (they have no football team).
[Editor’s Note: This week’s blog was posted on time, no thanks to the local McDonalds whose Wifi was so slow that we would have been there all day. Instead, we stood outside the local public library, which was closed, to post the blog. You’re welcome.]