Brattle offers alternative to mainstream movie theatres

By Jillian Saftel

The Brattle Theatre offers more than the average mainstream theatre, with showings ranging from classic to independent and foreign films.

Located on 40 Brattle St. in Cambridge, the theatre is easily accessed by the Red Line T at the Harvard Square station, and is just a short walk from the numerous shops and restaurants of Harvard Square.

Founded in 1953, he Brattle has been playing the same types of films the entire time it’s been open, Creative Director Ned Hinkle said who works on programming, marketing and special events.

The theatre has been operated by the non-profit Brattle Film Foundation since 2001, according to the theatre’s website,

“We feature classic movies like ‘Casablanca’ and ‘Gone With the Wind,’ but you’ll also find new independent features that won’t be shown anywhere else, weirder cult-y stuff that you wont see in other places,” Hinkle said.

The theatre offers specially priced student tickets for $7.75 and special group rates for groups of 10 or more.

At the end of April, The Brattle will be showing an “insane cult movie” from Japan made in the 1970s called “House,” Hinkle said.

“It’s sort of a haunted house movie, sort of a bad trip, sort of a teenage girl movie,” Hinkle said. “It’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever seen.”

Hinkle said a calendar is published for every two months at the theatre, and that on each one you can find “something you’re interested in, something you’ll like and something you’ve never seen before.”

Unlike mainstream movie theatres, the Brattle changes the films being shown every day, always allowing audiences to experience a wide range of films.

In addition to showing films, The Brattle hosts multiple film festivals and special events. The independent film festival in Boston will be here at the end of April, Hinkle said. The Brattle also hosts events in other art forms including readings and music events.

Among the theatre’s annual events are a showing of “Evil Dead 2” on Halloween, an Oscar Party, a New Year’s Day Marx Brothers Marathon and a Valentine’s Day showing of “Casablanca,” which are all listed on the theatre’s website.

“We show weird cult films and Hollywood classics, and that’s what makes the Brattle interesting and unique,” Hinkle said. “It’s definitely for people interested in stuff a bit outside the main stream.”

Tickets for shows can be purchased by calling the theatre in advance or purchasing tickets at the door.  Ticket prices vary, but most are less than $10.

Among other films being featured throughout the month of April are “Motion Graphics Fest 2010: New Psychedelia,” “Boston Film Race 2010,” “Kagemusha,” “Schlock Around The Clock 4,”  and The Warrior’s Camera: Akira Kurosawa Centennial”.

For a calendar of show times and films, go to or call 617-876-6838.

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