Today’s post is dedicated to my love of movies. I tend to be partial to the older type, like Hitchcock’s North by Northwest (the kid who plugs his ears before the gunshot is awesome) and Marilyn Monroe’s Some Like It Hot. But I have a special place in my heart for a handful of 80’s and 90’s classics, like Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure or the Disney cartoons of my childhood (there are some rumors they’re making a new Bill and Ted movie). And I’m also a big fan of modern foreign films (Amélie or Run Lola Run anyone?).

But aside from which movies I like, I also have a preferred venue for watching these: outside. Back when I was growing up outside Chicago, they used to show movies in Grant Park and I swear the whole city came out to watch. That’s where I saw It Happened One Night for the first time and I can still remember just how special it was to be able to watch these films on the big screen and outside the confines of a movie theater. It gave you the freedom to bring a picnic, socialize with friends, and still take in a good movie.

Recently I was able to recreate the experience twice in Washington DC, with the Capitol building as my backdrop. The first was It Happened One Night, about an heiress who tries to escape her family’s clutches and marry the man she wants, but has adventures with a clever reporter along the way. The next is the classic that needs no plot summary: the Hitchcock thriller Psycho with Janet Leigh and Anthony Perkins. While looking at some of the shots I took before and during these great films, just imagine the blanket under you and the wind blowing the scent of popcorn your way.

Packing up our picnic.

It Happened One Night with the Capitol building in the background.

 

Hitchcock’s Psycho

Hitchcock’s Psycho. The sheriff did NOT want to get up in the middle of the night for those hooligans…

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