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by Paris West
August 2nd, 2011

As part of the ongoing EPIX Movie Free-For-All summer series, we are granted the chance to screen two films that give insight into two very different versions of America while also deftly examining familial relations, in drama and comedy.  A departure from the dark and surrealist work that has come to define this auteur’s repertoire, David Lynch’s”The Straight Story“ seems like a simple tale about a man trying to reconnect with his brother by taking a cross country trip. Sound familiar, eh? But Lynch turns convention on its head by introducing the audience to a terminally ill anatagonist who travels across the Midwest on a thirty year old John Deere tractor. Not the lightest of fare, but a good watch nonetheless. If you are looking for something more New York-esque and light come to Tompkins Square park on Thursday and view The Pope of Greenwich Village starring afresh faced Eric Roberts and Mickey Rourke in all their 1980s glory. As two Italian American cousins, Paulie (Roberts) and Charlie (Rourke) are trying to make it in the city that never sleeps. When Paulie, the schemer of the two, comes up with a plan to solve their financial difficulty, hilarity and mob chasing ensue. Nothing like a buddy comedy for those sweltering New York Nights.

Prior to the screening of The Pope of Greenwich Rooftop will be presenting the short film Dock Ellis & The LSD No-No; an animated documentary by James Blagden that celebrates the greatest athletic achievement ever by a man on a psychedelic journey. If our evaluation of the records of athletes like Mark McGwire, Roger Clemens, Marion Jones, and Barry Bonds needs to be revised downwards with an asterisk, Blagden submits that Dock Ellis’ record deserves a giant exclamation point.

Looking for more free screenings courtesy of EPIX? Well you’re in luck. The EPIX Movie Free-For-All will be hosting screenings around New York City until September.

The Schedule:

“The Straight Story“
Date: Wednesday, August 3
Venue: SOCRATES SCULPTURE PARK, 3134 Vernon Boulevard, Long Island City, NY 11106, Take the N or W train to the Broadway stop in Queens and walk eight blocks West on Broadway (toward the East River) to the intersection of Vernon Boulevard.
7:00 PM Live Music
8:30 PM Films begin

“The Pope Of Greenwich Village“
Date: Thursday, August 4
Venue: TOMPKINS SQUARE PARK, 7th Street between A and B, Manhattan
7:45 PM Live music
8:30 PM Rooftop Films presents Dock Ellis and the LSD No-No
8:45 PM Film begins

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About Rooftop Films

Rooftop Films is a New York based non-profit whose mission is to engage diverse communities by showing independent movies in outdoor locations, producing new films, coordinating youth media education, and renting equipment at low cost to artists.

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