Editorial: No movies this year

Fri, 12/13/2013 - 3:00pm

When Empire Theatre owner Gary Pollard announced that he wanted to extend his schedule into the winter for first run movies — if he could find a suitable venue — the idea was hailed as a contribution to both island culture and its mental health. Various groups and organizations publicly supported the idea and people around town said they thought it was a good thing. Something else to do in the winter!

If we were betting types here at The Block Island Times, we would have put our money on this idea — and we would have lost.

It seems extraordinary, but no deal could be reached with any of the island’s secular, municipal or religious organizations to show movies this winter. Why was this? Was it a clash of personalities? Was it unwise for Pollard to ask to waive the user fee at the Block Island School? Did the churches not want to show movies that had an R rating? Or was it unreasonable for the Early Learning Center to ask Pollard to put back all the toys exactly as they were after showing the movie?

Perhaps we’ll never know exactly what happened, or why. It’s not a tragedy there won’t be movies on the island this winter; it’s merely too bad. It would have been nice to go to attend a show in January and February, when there is so little to do.

In the end, this story seems all too similar to the kinds of movies Hollywood seems to churn out these days: a story lacking in imagination with an unsatisfying ending.