By MCN Editor editor@moviecitynews.com

On The Closing Of Brooklyn’s Indie reRun Theater

Dear friends and colleagues:

It is with some reluctance that I announce today that I’m stepping down as curator of the reRun Gastropub Theater. Although my time with reRun has been exciting and fruitful, on the whole, there have been creative differences internally that now make it too difficult for me to contribute sufficiently to the role. I will continue with my hosting duties for this Friday’s premiere of Nacho Vigalondo’s EXTRATERRESTRIAL, as well as the June 22 premiere of Nathan Adloff’s NATE & MARGARET, before exiting at the end of this month.

However, the split is amicable, and I am incredibly thankful for the opportunity that reBar/reRun owner Jason Stevens offered by hiring me two years ago. Since the summer of 2010, Jason and I have built something that New York City was sorely lacking: a theatrical venue where acclaimed independent films from the festival circuit, underseen and mostly undistributed, could flourish. Being able to garner reviews and other press for these undervalued features regularly breathed new life into them, and gave filmgoers the chance to actually see them in a fun environment… with a cocktail in one hand, a bag of bacon-fat popcorn in the other.

According to Jason, reRun will be temporarily shut down following the NATE & MARGARET theatrical run so that he may revamp the space for whatever its next incarnation will be.

Following my departure at reRun, I will continue to work as editor of GreenCine Daily and as a freelance critic/journalist for various outlets. The timing of this decision is uncanny, but coincidental: on June 1, my wife Jennifer and I took over a Cobble Hill video store called Video Free Brooklyn, which I had originally hoped would be a natural, cross-pollinating extension of the movie theater. While we work to renovate our new business for the neighborhood community, I will be pursuing curatorial prospects elsewhere. Hopefully, this won’t be my only chance to make a difference in the realm of film exhibition.

Sincerely,

Aaron Hillis

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Who are the critics speaking to?
Nobody seems able to answer the question of how you can make theatre criticism more appealing, more clickworthy. One answer is to be a goddamn flamethrower every week, be a bombthrower, to write scorched-earth reviews. Just be completely hedonistic and ego-driven in your criticism, become a master stylist, and treat everything in front of you onstage as fodder for your most delicious and vicious language. That’s one road. And people may enjoy your writing. The thing that’s sacrificed is any sense of a larger responsibility, and any aesthetic consistency. I don’t think anyone is following that model right now—just being a complete jerk.

Well, Rex Reed is still writing.
Ah. Well, you can also be a standard bearer, and insist that work doesn’t measure up to your high standards. But I think the art makes the standards. I’m not going to sit there and say, “This is the way you do Shakespeare.” I believe that every play establishes its own standards, and our job is to just evaluate it. But everybody’s looking for the formula for how to talk about culture so that people who don’t have any time to read want to read about it. Is there something beyond thumbs-up, thumbs-down criticism? I would hope there’s a way to talk about a theatre event in real time—meaning while it’s still going on—in a way that’s engaging, funny, witty, and evaluates the elements of the thing. But it’s like if you had a friend who was like, “Gee, are you working out? You look great. But that’s a terrible haircut.” Nobody wants that person around.
~ Time Out’s 17-Year Theatre Critic, David Cote, Upon His Exit

“Now I am awake to the world. I was asleep before. When they slaughtered Congress, we didn’t wake up. When they blamed terrorists and suspended the Constitution, we didn’t wake up either. They said it would be temporary. Nothing changes instantaneously. In a gradually heating bathtub you’d be boiled to death before you knew it.”
“The Handmaid’s Tale,” Bruce Miller