It’s been an unusually busy early February at Enzian, with more special programming and events than at any time since probably last Spring’s 2009 Florida Film Festival. From the return of Rollins College’s “Winter with the Writers” program featuring author Andre Dubus III and HOUSE OF SAND AND FOG (membership does have its privileges–this free, closed event was open to Rollins students and Enzian Film Society members only), to the 25th anniversary free screenings of PEE-WEE’S BIG ADVENTURE and CLUE courtesy of United Arts’ ArtsFest, to midnight screenings of BLACK DYNAMITE and a Sunday brunch showing of AMADEUS in conjunction with the Bach Festival Society’s 75th anniversary, the last few days have simply been a cornucopia of cinematic riches. Not to mention the final weeks of Tom Ford’s stunning A SINGLE MAN, featuring Colin Firth in an amazing performance that justifiably earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor in a Leading Role, and the start of Enzian’s own 25th anniversary celebration with a special Valentine’s Day brunch screening of CASABLANCA.
But it’s the late night weekend showings of Scott Sanders’ BLACK DYNAMITE that’s gotten my attention. This simultaneously loving tribute and brilliantly funny send-up of 70s “Blaxploitation” flicks has tongues wagging and Enzian audiences as excited and animated as I’ve ever seen. Talk about a communal experience! The front bookend of our special programming for Black History Month (the original SUPERFLY arrives on 2/23 as part of our Cult Classics series), we turned away dozens of patrons (despite the lousy syndicated review in our local paper) and the film has accomplished a rare feat–it was actually held over for a second weekend of midnight shows! It’s actually one of the few films that I would go back immediately and see again the following week. Yes, it comes out on DVD soon. But if there was ever a film that demands to be seen on the big screen with a packed audience of film lovers who know how to have a good time, it’s BLACK DYNAMITE. As local Orlando Sentinel movie critic Roger Moore wrote in his positive 3-star review on his blog (which of course the paper did not print in their infinite wisdom), “It aims low, sure. But Black Dynamite is contrived to ‘keep you tight and outta sight.’ Can you dig it? Because I sure did.” Right on, brother!