Screen scene: Local film news

FROM THE BLUE RIDGE TO THE OKUCHICHIBU: Asheville-based hammered dulcimer player Joshua Messick has TEST TEST TEST released a short documentary about how Western North Carolina and nature inspire his art. He's also the featured instrumentalist on 'Mary and the Witch’s Flower,' the first animated feature from Studio Ghibli offshoot Studio Ponoc, which screens nationwide Jan. 18. Photo by Lynne Harty

Asheville Pizza & Brewing Co. presents its 7 Days of Classic Christmas Movies series, Monday, Dec. 18-Sunday, Dec. 24. The selected films are Love Actually (Dec. 18-19, noon and 7:30 p.m.; Dec. 20, 7 p.m.); Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Dec. 18, 4 p.m.; Dec. 19-20, noon and 3:30 p.m.); Die Hard (Dec. 18-20, 10 p.m.); Elf (Dec. 21-24, noon and 3:30 p.m.); Edward Scissorhands (Dec. 21-24, 7 p.m.); and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (Dec. 21-23, 10 p.m.). $3.

Habitat Tavern and Commons, 174 Broadway, hosts the latest installment of Spoiler Alert! on Thursday, Dec. 21, at 8 p.m. Comparable to “Mystery Science Theater 3000,” “Rifftrax Live” or “The Benson Interruption,” the event involves the screening of a cult movie, during which host James Harrod and guest comedians Grayson Morris and Blaine Perry will interject colorful commentary, poking fun at its acting, dialogue and plotting. The latest selection is Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964), in which Red Planet residents, miffed that their kids have become obsessed with Earth’s television shows extolling the virtues of St. Nick, embark on an expedition to kidnap Santa and have him bring presents to Martian children. Admission is $5 and includes popcorn.

• There are two local screenings of The Muppet Christmas Carol: Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood St., will show it on Friday, Dec. 22, at 1 p.m. Complimentary popcorn and refreshments provided. Free. Then, White Horse Black Mountain, 105 Montreat Road, Black Mountain, presents the film on Saturday, Dec. 23, at 2 p.m. Suggested donation $8 adults, $4 children under 10 years old.

Grail Moviehouse, 45 S. French Broad Ave., shows It’s a Wonderful Life on Saturday, Dec. 23, at 1:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 24, at 7 p.m. Regular ticket prices apply.

• Asheville-based hammered dulcimer player Joshua Messick has released a short documentary about how Western North Carolina and nature inspire his art. The film may be viewed on Messick’s YouTube channel.

Messick’s year also included a trip to Japan in May to record as the featured instrumentalist on Mary and the Witch’s Flower, playing on 20 of the original score’s 26 tracks. The film is the first animated feature from Studio Ponoc, the continuation of Studio Ghibli, and will screen in theaters nationwide exclusively on Thursday, Jan. 18. The Carolina Cinemark presents the English-dubbed version — featuring the voices of Kate Winslet, Ruby Barnhill and Jim Broadbent — at 7 p.m. and the original Japanese version with English subtitles at 8 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults, $14 for seniors and $13 for children and available online and at the Carolina box office.


Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Edwin Arnaudin
Edwin Arnaudin is a staff writer for Mountain Xpress. He also reviews films for and is a member of the Southeastern Film Critics Association (SEFCA) and North Carolina Film Critics Association (NCFCA). Follow me @EdwinArnaudin

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.