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The Film Programs of the Detroit Film Theatre, Michigan Theater, and Redford Theatre

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Miracle on 34th Street Opens (August 1947)

August Looking Back: 1927 1931 1932 1939 1947 1956 1957 1981 1982

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Watch the DFT web site for news about the fall lineup of films.
The Michigan launches another University of Michigan school year with the classic Casablanca on September 1.

Thrill to the adventures of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom at the Redford on September 12 and 13.

 

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Looking Back

May 1981

Step back in time to see what area movie theaters were presenting in May 1981. Film titles are linked to the Internet Movie Database.

For more information about these theaters, see Cinema Treasures or Water Winter Wonderland.


The Detroit Film Theatre ended the Winter/Spring season of its eighth year with a season record attendance of about 80,000, noted Susan Stark of the Detroit News. About half of those patrons attended the Sunday night 3-D series. In Stark's story, DFT Director Elliot Wilhelm said, "I think we gave Detroiters a good overview of what's going on at the movies and they responded magnificently."

This last month of this DFT season included the Hungarian Confidence (1980), the French Poto and Cabengo (1979) and the Italian Luna (1979). Also playing was Image Before My Eyes (1981), a documentary about Jews in Poland before the two World Wars. American film fans enjoyed Alfred Hitchcock's 3-D Dial M for Murder (1954) and Buster Keaton in Seven Chances (1925) and Sherlock Jr. (1924). The season ended on May 30 with the appropriately titled Jazz on a Summer's Day (1960). DFT staff and visitors then took a break until Aug. 7, when the next season opened with Francois Truffaut's The Last Metro (1980).

On May 2, the Classic Film Theatre of the Michigan Theatre presented The Wizard of Oz (1939), which returned to the Michigan on May 20, 2006. The CFT also launched a Cary Grant Festival on May 23, 1981. In an Ann Arbor News article about this festival (and an Alfred Hitchcock festival in June), Arts Editor Rich Quackenbush wrote, "The majestic Michigan, of course, offers the facilities to show classic movies in the bigger-than-life setting for which they were intended."

From May 8 to May 10, the St. Joe's Radio-thon Auction on WAAM-AM (1600) radio let listeners bid on "two noontime performances by a Michigan Theatre organist or bid on two hour-long sessions at the keyboard for yourself." A Memorial Show at the Michigan on May 29 included the movie Maytime (1937) and musical performances by organist Newton Bates and the Livingston County Midlakes Chorus.

Redford audiences enjoyed two classic musicals, including Fiddler on the Roof (1971), which was shown on May 1 and 2. Anchors Aweigh (1945) washed ashore at the Redford on May 15 and 16. On May 9, renowned theater organist Gaylord Carter accompanied the dramatic silent film Sunrise (1927). The month ended on May 29 and 30 with Alfred Hitchcock's 1938 film The Lady Vanishes.


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This web site is not affiliated with the Detroit Film Theatre, the Michigan Theater, or the Redford Theatre.

Web site copyright © 2014 by Robert Hollberg Smith, Jr.

Launched November 25, 2005.

Last updated August 18, 2014.

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