Hello NEON Fans.
Once again, we’re moving right along in our Virtual Cinema. Today marks the start of a new, charming & stylized dramedy starring Bill Nighy – SOMETIMES ALWAYS NEVER. On Friday, we will open a fantastic new documentary about the “First Lady of Song” – ELLA FITZGERALD: JUST ONE OF THOSE THINGS.
Also this Friday, we’re doing a very soft, quiet reopening. Just 2 shows per day for one week so we can get our feet wet again and introduce some new mechanics of our operations. (Below, I have outlined some of our new procedures.) For one week only, starting this Friday, you can come see MISS JUNETEENTH or WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR on the big screen for just $5.
On July 3, we’ll open two brand new films in person. First off is the inspiring documentary JOHN LEWIS: GOOD TROUBLE. We’ll also open THE TRUTH – starring the powerhouse talents of Catherine Deneuve, Juliette Binoche, and Ethan Hawke – directed by Hirokazu Koreeda (director of SHOPLIFTERS).
Synopsis for SOMETIMES ALWAYS NEVER in our VIRTUAL CINEMA: “Alan (Bill Nighy) is a stylish tailor with moves as sharp as his suits. However, he’s spent years searching for his missing son Michael, who stormed out over a game of Scrabble and hasn’t been seen since. With a body to identify and his family torn apart, Alan must repair his relationship with his youngest son. Worst of all, he must solve the mystery of an online player who might just be Michael–and find the right words before it’s too late.” You can watch this film on your computer or mobile device as well as some smart TVs. For more details about available devices, please visit the Eventive’s HELP page. Click the image below to watch the trailer and gain 72 hour access for $12.
Synopsis for ELLA FITZGERALD: JUST ONE OF THOSE THINGS in our Virtual Cinema: “Ella Fitzgerald was a 15 year-old street kid when she won a talent contest in 1934 at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem. Within months she was a star. ELLA FITZGERALD: JUST ONE OF THOSE THINGS follows her extraordinary journey over six decades as her sublime voice transforms the tragedies of her own life and the troubles of her times into joy. The film uses never-before-seen images and unheard interviews to bring Ella Fitzgerald to life and to tell the story of her music – a black woman who makes her career in the face of horrifying racism. Here is an Ella the world never knew – tough, thoughtful, funny, a dazzling musical innovator. The film also uncovers Ella’s commitment to the battle for Civil Rights; and it explores the conflicts that always haunted this intensely private woman: the struggle to reconcile her hunger for adoring audiences with her longing for a domestic life with her husband and son. At a time when she was the biggest singing star in the world, her pianist and friend Oscar Peterson said Ella was ‘the loneliest woman in the world.’ But as Jamie Cullum says ‘her music is one of the reasons it’s worth being on this planet.’ Featuring interviews with: Tony Bennett, Jamie Cullum, Laura Mvula, Johnny Mathis, Smokey Robinson, Cleo Laine, Andre Previn, Norma Miller, Patti Austin, Izsak Perlman, Margo Jefferson, Will Friedwald and a rare interview with Ella’s son, Ray Brown Jr.” (Eagle Rock Entertainment) Here’s a bonus for our virtual fans: Join us for a live video conversation on Sunday, June 28 at 7PM with author & music critic WIll Friedwald, the film’s producer Reggie Nadelson, Pulitzer Prize-winning author/journalist Margo Jefferson and composer, multi-instrumentalist & vocalist Camille Thurman. Click this LINK to sign up for this special Q&A. You can watch this film on your computer or mobile device as well as some smart TVs. For more details about available devices, please visit the Eventive’s HELP page. This film will be available starting this Friday, June 26 in our Virtual Cinema. Click the image below to watch the trailer and pre-order 72 hour access to the film for $12.
Synopsis for MISS JUNETEENTH – In-Person Screenings: “Turquoise Jones is a single mom who holds down a household, a rebellious teenager, and pretty much everything that goes down at Wayman’s BBQ & Lounge. Turquoise is also a bona fide beauty queen — she was once crowned Miss Juneteenth, a title commemorating the day slaves in Texas were freed – two years after the Emancipation Proclamation. Life didn’t turn out as beautifully as the title promised, but Turquoise, determined to right her wrongs, is cultivating her daughter, Kai, to become Miss Juneteenth, even if Kai wants something else.” (Vertical Entertainment) Click the image below to watch the trailer!
Synopsis for WON’T YOU BE MY NEIGHBOR? – In-Person Screenings: In the summer of 2018, we opened this quiet and lovely film…and it quickly skyrocketed to becoming our biggest hit of the year and our highest grossing documentary of all time at THE NEON. We’re bringing it back…because we need Mr. Roger’s wisdom and compassion more than ever. “For over thirty years, Fred Rogers, an unassuming minister, puppeteer, writer and producer was beamed daily into homes across America. In his beloved television program, MISTER ROGER’S NEIGHBORHOOD, Fred and his cast of puppets and friends spoke directly to young children about some of life’s weightiest issues, in a simple, direct fashion. There hadn’t been anything like Mr. Rogers on television before and there hasn’t been since. Though he may be best known today as a soft-spoken, cardigan-wearing children’s television host, in reality, Fred Rogers’ career represents a sustained attempt to present a coherent, beneficent view about how we should best speak to children about important matters and how television could be used as a positive force in our society.” (Focus Features) Click the image below to watch the film’s trailer.
We are delighted to keep the following films available in our Virtual Cinema for another week (they will only be available until June 30):
Don’t Miss This Film starring WSU grad Jasmine Batchelor! Local critic Russell Florence calls this film the “First best film of 2020.” THE SURROGATE: “Jess is thrilled to be the surrogate for her best friend and his husband, but when a prenatal test comes back positive, it creates a moral dilemma that threatens their friendship.” (Monument Releasing) You can watch the film on your computer or mobile device as well as AppleTV, Roku and Chromecast. Click the image below to gain 72 hour access to this film for $12.
Synopsis for MISS JUNETEENTH: You can watch the film on your computer or mobile device as well as AppleTV, Roku and Chromecast. Click the image below to gain 72 hour access to this film for $6.99.
Synopsis for QUARANTINE CAT FILM FEST: “QUARANTINE CAT FILM FESTIVAL is a compilation reel that brings together the cutest, funniest, bravest, and most loving cat videos from more than 1,200 submissions filmed during the COVID-19 Quarantine.” This collection is available to watch on your computer or mobile device. It is also available for your SmartTV via mirroring or via an HDMI hookup. Click the image below to watch the trailer and gain 72 hour access for $12.
The DAYTON JEWISH FILM FESTIVAL has already nearing an end…how is that possible? That said, there are still a few films for you to see, and you can gain FREE access to their virtual selections and on-line events! Though we certainly miss hosting this fantastic festival at THE NEON, we think they’ve made a wise decision to move forward virtually this year!! Check out their awesome line-up by clicking the image below! It’s their 20th anniversary, and they’re making all the screenings and on-line discussions FREE (including talk-backs & comedians)…and it’s very easy to sign up!
Wanna know what’s coming down the road in our virtual cinema? (Click any title to watch that film’s trailer.) On July 1, we will open a powerful Sundance film about a young Black man exploring his roots and struggling with what it all means – THE LAST TREE. On July 8, we plan to open ONE SMALL STEP – a collection of animated short films that are family-friendly! On July 17, we hope to open THE TOBACCONIST – both virtually and in-person – a film I saw and loved at The Cleveland International Film Festival last year. And sometime later in July, we will open a film called CREATING A CHARACTER – a film about a famous Julliard acting instructor who has helped many incredible performers reach greatness. We’re also hoping to pair this with a community discussion from a handful of directors & performing artists with local ties.
Due to new guidelines for keeping staff and customers healthy during the current crisis, we are in the process of “figuring out” reserved seating. If you want to sit next to someone, you’ll need to purchase tickets in the same transaction. The software we are using will automatically block off three seats between parties – so if you buy a single ticket, there’s no chance for someone to sit next to you. If you’re the first person to reserve a seat in a row (on-line or in-person), we ask that you choose a seat that’s on the aisle or along the wall…this will allow us to maximize our capacity. This is going to be a big learning curve for us – a full house will now be approximately 35% of our actual capacity.
Here is some of what we’re initially doing TO ENSURE THAT STAFF AND GUESTS STAY HEALTHY:
- Masks are required for all staff and guests except when eating in an auditorium.
- Our entrance to the building has moved to THE NEON’s patio doors. This will streamline transactions and separate ticketing from food purchases. Additional time between screenings will also minimize lobby traffic.
- Commonly touched surfaces (door handles, will be sanitized every 30 minutes.
- Floor markers will assist with social distancing, and hand sanitizers are located throughout the lobby.
- Please arrive before the scheduled showtime. Seating will begin approximately 40 minutes before each show.
- In the auditoriums, every other row will be unavailable. Groups may sit together, but 3 seats will be required between parties in each row.
- We have increased the time between screenings to allow us sufficient time to sanitize the auditoriums. For additional assurance, seat wipes will also be available for customer use.
- Please stay home if you have any of the following symptoms: cough, shortness of breath, fever, chills, sore throat or new loss of taste/smell.
After all these weeks and hurdles, we finally have a DONATE button on our website. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to our non-profit, please visit this LINK.
We hope to see you soon!
Be safe & well.