Alamo Drafthouse Cinema: Much More Than Beer at the Movies

Dallas movie lovers are in for a real treat. In just a few short months, the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema will open Richardson. The Austin, Texas cinema chain, famous for its no talking-no texting during a movie policy will be open in a Richardson shopping center at Central Expressway and Beltline (just North of Dallas) in the spring of 2013.

This week, I was fortunate to be part of a media tour to Austin, the home of the original Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. The Magical Mystery Media Tour Party Bus included more than 30 media writers, the Queen of PR, Kelly Kitchens, along with my new Alamo Drafthouse friends, Bill DiGaetano and Sarah Pitre.

The Alamo Drafthouse Loves Chick Flicks!

I knew I was going to love the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema when Movie Programmer, Sarah Pitre told me about their Girlie Night Movie Series.  Yes, ladies and gentlemen, this theater dedicates a night to the movies we love! This month, they will have a special afternoon tea during the showing of Jane Eyre. Mmmm tea with Michael Fassbender!

Girlie Night  movies like Dirty DancingAmelie and Emma are featured. They also held a 3 day movie event honoring the movies of Nora Ephron that benefitted local cancer-related charities. I can’t wait to take a group of my girls to the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema DFW location for some real chick flick fun!

Alamo Drafthouse Signature Movie Events

What makes the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema unique is their eclectic mix of  movie programming . The mix of new releases, independent films, art house favorites as well as their Signature Events like Music Mondays, Terror Tuesdays,  Master Pancake Theater, Food & Film Feasts and Cinema Cocktails has something for everyone.

At the helm of these cinema events is programmer, Lars Nilsen who must have an encyclopedic knowledge of movies. He is also the host of Weird Wednesdays, a series of exploitation classics with all your favorite bad killer cheerleader, women in prison and other cheesy movies you love to hate.

Master Pancake Theater  

Our stop at the 6th Street location included  Master Pancake Theater. You know that I have a serious pancake addiction, so there was a momentary disappointment when I found out they were not serving actual pancakes.

Instead, I was treated to the zany comedy group, Master Pancake. This group of nutty guys provided a hilarious alternate dialogue to Conan the Barbarian (the Arnold Schwarzenegger version). They even created a special drinking game for the audience. Every time we saw a snake on-screen, we yelled “SNAKES” and took a drink. It worked for me, because I have a morbid phobia about snakes, so I yelled “SNAKES“, covered my eyes and took a drink of my fabulous Old Fashion cocktail. This is the perfect way to see a movie as bad as Conan.

After enjoying a juicy Angus burger and fries, I decided to completely give up on my diet and try the chocolate chip cookie. …and this is how they made a true fan out of me…The waitress soon delivered  3 giant, HOT, homemade chocolate chip cookies! This absolutely made up for the lack of pancakes.

Food and Film Feasts

There are other movie theaters that serve food and drinks, but so often the food really sucks.  Executive Chef John Bullington prides himself on serving food made from fresh ingredients. “There are no microwaves in our kitchens…Even the cocktails are made with fresh juices.” We met Chef Bullington at the Slaughter Road location, where introduced us to some of the specialty foods available at the Alamo Drafthouse. In addition to the regular menu of pizzas, burgers, salads and a huge selection of great beers, Chef Bullington creates special menus for their Food and Film Feast Series.


Recent Food and Film Feast menus included recipes from Julia Childs’ The Art of French Cooking for a showing of Julie and Julia. For an all day showing of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, Chef Bullington created a 9 course menu of New Zealand foods and dishes mentioned in the movies.

Music Mondays Sing -a- Longs and Quote Alongs

The only exception to the Alamo Drafthouse  Cinema’s no talking policy is at the Music Mondays and Quote Along movies. Get out your air guitar and sing along to your favorite Queen, KISS and Journey arena rock concerts.

Later this month they will have a Princess Bride Quote Along.  I am tempted to drive down to Austin for this event, since I can quote almost the entire movie. But that would be (wait for it) Inconceivable!

It was a long, wonderful day, spent talking about movies with a crazy bunch of movie lovers — just like me. Needless to say, I am anxiously awaiting the spring 2013 opening of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema DFW and trying more of those yummy chocolate chip cookies.

 

About Clara Mathews

Clarabela (Clara Mathews) is freelance web content copywriter, professional blogger and Hugh Jackman fan. In addition to writing about her love of movies at JustChickFlicks.com, Clarabela is also a regular contributor to DignityZine.  Follow Just Chick Flicks on Facebook.