By, Heather Maloney
In an epic multi film event, The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Littleton, Colorado hosted two events that can truly be considered every film enthusiast’s dream on Sunday, March 6, 2016. Filmmaker Oliver Stone joined fans with screenings of both his new film “U-Turn” and fan favorite “Natural Born Killers”. In addition to the film screenings, the audiences of both films were treated to a question and answer session with the filmmaker himself along with award winning author and rogerebert.com editor in chief Matt Zoller Seitz.
While “Natural Born Killers” was met with controversy and lawsuits when it was originally released in 1994, many consider the film to be not only groundbreaking in regard to its style and composition, but also its innovative message of sensationalizing violence in the media even prior to the rise of online social media. As the story follows two lovers on a murderous rampage, it also delves into the corrupt justice system as well as how their story becomes romanticized by the main stream media. What many critics and viewers have a difficult time rationalizing the story’s themes all the while processing the events of the film, most find it troubling to realize that while Mickey and Mallory Knox murder others because they feel like it, they actually turn out to be the moral compass of the story. This film was decades before its time and cleared the path for many other films to become acceptable in mainstream Hollywood.
During the question and answer session, Oliver Stone spoke in depth about the extensive editing process that was required while making the film. Not only did the style of the project require many edits on its own, the confusing feedback from the ratings board added even additional edits. When trying to obtain an ‘R’ rating, the board sent broad feedback critiquing the style of the film as the problem not any one item in particular, therefore sections needed to bet cut down dramatically such as the prison riot sequence. Stone also discussed that he had to face lawsuits stating that the film caused people to commit violent acts and really explained why it would be catastrophic for this type of lawsuit to be successful. He explained that if someone was to blame art in influencing violent behavior it would censor all art and there would be no limit to where it would end. Could Beethoven cause someone to go mad?
During the screening, the audience was treated to another culinary delight from the Alamo Drafthouse Denver’s Head Chef Seth Rexroad. The Mean Man Burger is a pork patty topped with bacon, mushrooms, New Mexican green chilies and ghost pepper cheese. The meal was served with fries and paired with Java Stout, Pale Ale and Happy Camper IPA from Santa Fe Brewing Company and was magic. While it sounds like a burger that would cause a 3 alarm fire, the flavors offset each other and the spice is not overwhelming. It gives the ensemble just enough kick to make this a truly exciting dining experience.
Having an Alamo Drafthouse in the community is a cultural treasure. For movie buffs or film fanatics, the Drafthouse hosts amazing events and opportunities to meet filmmakers and stars in a setting that inspires the love of film. Stay tuned and check the website for additional upcoming events.