Screen scene: Local film news

SCIENTIFIC ESCAPISM: In partnership with Malaprop's and the Asheville Art Museum, Grail Moviehouse screens "Rocaterrania," a documentary about the late scientific illustrator Renaldo Kuhler, pictured, on July 21. Photo courtesy of Brett Ingram

• The West Asheville Library, 942 Haywood Road, continues its Book to Movie Film Series on Friday, July 20, 3-5 p.m., with Life of Pi. Free.

• The Musical Matinees weekly summer film series continues at the Columbus Public Library, 1289 W. Mills St., Columbus, on Friday, July 20, at 1 p.m. with Mamma Mia! Free.

Grail Moviehouse, 45 S. French Broad Ave. will show Rocaterrania on Saturday, July 21, at 2 p.m. The 2009 documentary chronicles the life and work of the late scientific illustrator Renaldo Kuhler, who created hundreds of plates for the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, drawing diverse flora and fauna for scientific journals, reference books and exhibits. To escape from a world that didn’t understand him, he also invented the titular country — a tiny sovereign nation of European immigrants on the border of New York and Canada — as a teenager and secretly illustrated the nation’s history for 65 years.

Staff from the Asheville Art Museum will introduce the film and participate in a post-screening Q&A along with Brett Ingram, the film’s director and author of The Secret World of Renaldo Kuhler. Tickets are $10 and available online and at the Grail box office.

World Peas Animations offers a pair of Movie Making Summer Camps, Monday, July 23-Friday, July 27. In the Live Action Movie Making camp, students will work together to write, storyboard, act in, direct and edit a movie. For the Stop Motion Animation camp, students will work with clay, paper, white boards and more to make an animated film. All materials will be provided, and both camps conclude with a screening of the finished works for family and friends. Each camp is intended for ages 5-14 and costs $275. For camp location and to register, call 828-335-9349 or email

• On Wednesday, July 25, 6-7 p.m. at Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood St., local film historian and author Frank Thompson will lead a discussion of movies produced in Asheville from 1900 until the end of the silent film era in 1929. Free.

• In partnership with the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, the Fine Arts Theatre, 36 Biltmore Ave., screens Alice’s Restaurant on Thursday, July 26, at 7 p.m. The film will be preceded by a short talk on director Arthur Penn’s legacy in American film and how his career was influenced by his experiences at Black Mountain College. Tickets — available online and at the Fine Arts box office — are $8 for students and BMCM+AC members and $10 for nonmembers.


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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

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