Hi my name is Greg Jamie. I moved to Maine from New York five years ago, and one of the things I miss most is the active, diverse and vibrant film culture that New York facilitates.
So much of my time in NY was spent at Film Forum- where I worked for several years-, Anthology Film Archives, Walter Reade, Cinema Village, MOMA, BAM etc. watching the movies that don’t get seen on the big screen in many other places.
Unfortunately I got to Maine just after Movies on Exchange closed, so the art house options in Portland are extremely limited. With the depressing closing of Videoport last year there is even less of a sense of community that circles around a film culture that is no doubt thriving with the overwhelming amount of visionaries that inhabit this state. So, the idea is to create an extra space in the world of the internet to note all that’s happening in the wider world of alternative cinema.
Usually i’ll be covering movies that are coming through town, but I might want to delve into films or filmmakers that aren’t as well. I’m not the best at blurbs, so I might sound clunky or weird sometimes- but give me a second to get the hang of it. I’ll loosen up over time. Writing about movies, thinking about movies, going into that strange other universe, feeling the perspective on a world that you didn’t know existed… there’s a lot to get into. My hope is some sort of dialogue is created. So definitely call me out if you think i’m full of shit. Its ok. If there’s something you think I should be covering- let me know. The sense I get though, is that there really aren’t enough places outside of people’s living rooms that people are gathering to watch films that are challenging and strange. Certainly there is almost no repertory viewings to speak of- so it might be fun to dig into a filmmaker- like John Cassevettes, or Werner Herzog or John Carpenter- and just delve in together.
Streaming culture is killing the impact that moviegoing has had in the past, but I think the tides are always shifting in that regard. For now lets celebrate whats out there and revel in the shared experience of weird on screen.