Mayor’s Cup Movie Night was christened in 2014 as the annual four-day festival’s first and so far only event recognizing Lake Champlain’s oldest and most enduring folklore – the legend of Champ, the Lake Champlain Monster.
This summer’s docket will honor the tireless work of Champ researchers Katy Elizabeth and Dennis Hall, they of incalculable value to the field of cryptozoology (the study of cryptids, creatures whose existence has yet to be proven beyond the shadow of a doubt).
To that end, the 3rd-annual Mayor’s Cup Movie Night marquee will present 1954’s “Monster from the Ocean Floor,” essentially a boy-meets-girl adventure in the cryptozoological realm. The one and only Roger Corman began his impossibly prolific career with this movie (he eventually became film history’s most influential producer, now 90 and still going strong).
It will be preceded by a brief reel of vintage home-shot Lake Champlain footage, opening an evening of refreshingly low-key, frankly antidotal DIYself-ishness providing direly needed respite from obscenely over-budgeted, pervasive superhero franchises.
Like last summer’s featured attraction “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes,” “Monster from the Ocean Floor” is less about a sea monster than sheer on-location ambiance, with an atmosphere evocative of Lake Champlain’s mystery and sense of wonder stirring imaginations around the world (not just regionally).
Only 64 min. long, “Monster from the Ocean Floor” will be followed by another short cryptozoologically inclined DIY classic, 1956’s “Man Beast,” about a (fictional) Himalayan expedition seeking the legendary Yeti.
This double-feature will screen at the Newman Center, 90 Broad St. across from SUNY Plattsburgh, on Saturday, July 9th starting at 7:30 pm. Former Press-Republican film critic Andy MacDougall, the North Country’s sole remaining celluloid (film) preservationist/archivist/exhibitor, will host the free event with post-viewing Q & A included. Presented entirely on 16mm film (not DVD).
For anyone unable to attend Saturday’s engagement, catch a ‘consolation’ screening the following evening, Sunday, July 10th at Andy’s nearby 16mm home theater (directions available upon request at firstname.lastname@example.org). Free and open to all.
Please note that Sunday’s program will not repeat Saturday’s menu, instead offering the stand-alone sci-fi thriller “Gorgo” (1961) about a dinosaur released from suspended animation in the Irish Sea’s bedrock by natural cataclysm. Widely considered a cult classic including in cryptozoological circles, a Q & A session will follow this screening as well. Showtime: Sunday, July 10th at 7:30 pm with pre-feature shorts included.
Please also note that personal schedules pending, Katy Elizabeth and/or Dennis Hall may or may not participate in either evening’s program.