A Press Democrat Blog


Dan Taylor on the fine arts scene.

Two Santa Rosa theaters screen ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’

Few films have had a lifespan like Frank Capra’s 1946 holiday classic, “It’s a Wonderful Life.” And this weekend in Santa Rosa, it will live again. The movie, starring Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed, was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and ultimately was listed by the American Film Institute as one of the 100 best American movies ever made. After an initially weak showing at the box office when it was originally released, the story of George… Read More »

Five Sonoma County theaters screen free holiday films Dec. 17

Tired from Christmas shopping? Take at break at the movies for free, and help good causes. For the third year, the Santa Rosa Entertainment Group will screen free holiday films all day Wednesday, Dec. 17, at five local theaters. The films and theaters are: “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” Roxy Stadium 14, 85 Santa Rosa Ave., Santa Rosa. “The Polar Express,” Airport Stadium, 409 Aviation Blvd., Santa Rosa. “Four Christmases,” Summerfield Cinemas, 551 Summerfield Road, Santa Rosa. “Jingle All the Way,”… Read More »

Oscar-nominated short films screen at Summerfield, Rialto

Oscar-nominated movies get a lot of attention, but there are some that many movie-goers never get to see. Those are the short films, both animated and live-action, gathered for special release once a year in two separate feature-length packages. Two Sonoma County theaters will show the films, starting Friday, Jan. 31, at the Summerfield Cinemas in Santa Rosa, and Feb. 7 at the Rialto Cinemas in Sebastopol. The 2014 Oscar-nominated animated short films are: “Feral,” (USA). A wild boy, found… Read More »

Rialto, Summerfield plan special screenings

Two Sonoma County movie theaters plan special events this month. The Rialto Cinemas in Sebastopol opens the new monthly New York Film Critics Series next week, featuring screenings of new films before their national release, plus high-definition simulcasts of question-and-answer sessions with the stars and filmmakers. The first film in the series is “American Hustle,” starring Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, and Jennifer Lawrence. The movie was named best picture of 2013 this week by the New… Read More »

‘Alice in Wonderland’ ballet screened at Summerfield

“Alice in Wonderland,” a ballet based on Lewis Carroll’s classic story and performed by the Royal Ballet of London, will be screened at 1 p.m. Sunday (June 30) and 6:30 p.m. Tuesday (July 2) at the Summerfield Cinemas, 551 Summerfield Road, Santa Rosa. The production, adapted by internationally known choreographer Christopher Wheeldon, runs 190 minutes, with two intermissions. Admission: $14-$18. Information: 522-0719, summerfieldcinemas.com.  

‘Magic Flute’ at Summerfield, ‘Love Free or Die’ at Rialto

Coming up at Sonoma County’s art cinema houses: — “The Magic Flute,” the film version of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s classic two-act opera, will screen twice at Summerfield Cinemas in Santa Rosa. The 134-minute film, directed by Kenneth Branagh, will be show at 1 p.m. Sunday (June 9) and 6 p.m. Tuesday (June 11) at the theater, 551 Summerfield Road, Santa Rosa. $16-$20. 539-6773, summerfieldcinemas.com. — The Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival and Community Cinemas will present a free screening of “Love… Read More »

Oscar-nominated short films come to movie theaters

Every year, the Academy Award nominations spark a fierce flash of interest among film fans. But for decades, one category languished in the shadows — the short films. Locally, Ky Boyd, proprietor of the Rialto Cinemas — first in Santa Rosa, and now in Sebastopol — has championed these little gems. When the shorts, both live and animated, became available to release as a package program to movie theaters in 2001, the Rialto was among the few nationwide to leap… Read More »

‘Romeo & Juliet’ ballet simulcast at Summerfield Cinemas

Think you could get to London and back for under $20? Probably not. But if you want to see the Royal Ballet production of “Romeo and Juliet,” simulcast live from London, you’ll save a fortune. Summerfield Cinemas,  at 551 Summerfield Road in Santa Rosa, will present this program at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, March 22, with encore showings at 1 p.m. April 1 and 6:30 p.m. April 1o. Admission: adults, $18;  seniors and students, $16; children, $14. Information: http://summerfieldcinemas.com, (707) 522-0719.

Films on Playland, Sutro Baths get another encore

Petaluma filmmaker Tom Wyrsch’s  hit documentary double bill about two  gone-but-not-forgotten San Francisco attractions is coming back for yet another encore Saturday, March 10, at Santa Rosa’s Summerfield Cinemas. “Remembering Playland at the Beach” and “Sutro’s, the Palace at Land’s End,” have played to full houses and long lines three times this year, mostly recently on Sunday, March 4. You can see “Playland” at 1 p.m. and “Sutro’s” at 2:30 p.m., with a question-and-answer session following both screenings. These are… Read More »

‘Playland’ documentary returns to Summerfield Cinemas

Petaluma filmmaker Tom Wyrsch has a hit on his hands. His documentary double bill about two  gone-but-not-forgotten San Francisco attractions, “Remembering Playland at the Beach” and “Sutro’s, the Palace at Land’s End,” have played to full houses and long lines at Santa Rosa’s Summerfield Cinemas. That has happened not just once, but twice, earlier this year. Both films return Sunday, March 4, to Summerfield: “Playland” at 1 p.m. and “Sutro’s” at 2:30 p.m., with a question-and-answer session with Wyrsch following… Read More »