4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

San Diego Public Library calls Cut! on Film Forum

31-year-old film-screening series ends

Farewell, free movies
Farewell, free movies

The new Central Library opened its doors on September 30, 2013, with what appeared to be a commitment to the Film Forum screening series.

The morning email brought dire tidings for one of our town’s longest-running film programs. Series devotee Pat Pepper writes, “For 31 years the San Diego Public Library has shown quality movies free of charge via Film Forum. This valuable program is set to end in November. It would be very excellent if Scott Marks tries to save Film Forum as he did the Ken Cinema.”

I’m good, but it’s doubtful the power needed to hack through this amount of bureaucratic red tape is harnessed in my veal-like limbs. Pat received the news directly from program curator, Ralph DeLauro — the man keeping the show afloat for over three decades — during his introduction to Tuesday night’s presentation of the French comedy, If You Don’t, I Will.

The program ends with November’s series. The decision impacts all of the branch libraries where Ralph took his show on the road.

Ever spend three hours being dodged by librarians? That’s how long it took to get a call back after filling inboxes with voicemails. A brief chat with library Sr. Public Information Officer Marion Moss Hubbard was followed up by this list of “speaking points” from library director Misty Jones:

The San Diego Public Library has had a long term relationship with Ralph DeLauro and we appreciate what he has done on the Film Forum through the years. Films at the Library will not be going away. We have received requests from the community to branch out. We are exploring new opportunities to reach more people and be more inclusive as well as ways to stretch out programming dollars. This exploration will include rotating among film experts in the community and developing new community partnerships.

“Stretch out programming dollars” no doubt means a reliance on staff members to keep it going rather than paying an expert in his or her field to continue running the show. Ralph’s future with the library is unclear. When asked, Ms. Hubbard paused before saying, “I’m not sure.”

As a valuable asset to the local film community, it’s a shame to see Ralph’s program fold. I’m a fine one to talk, having never once in almost two years visited the facility, but damn if the venue doesn’t serve a purpose. I go to bed every night thankful for the opportunity to get into movies for free. The old days of second-run two-dollar houses are deader than Clint Eastwood’s chances of luring Doris Day out of retirement. A lot of movie fans don’t have the extra entertainment dollars needed to drop on a $12 ticket. For many, this was their one shot to see quality films in a theatre and with an audience.

For those wanting to start a write-in campaign, this list of administrative contacts is as good a place as any to get the ball rolling.

There will be a screening of the terrific music documentary The Wrecking Crew on November 2 with director Denny Tedesco in attendance. Come as a show of support, and stay for what will no doubt be one of Ralph’s crowning achievements.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Reader editor Matt Lickona welcomes first child

Pregnancy, circumcision, Waugh vs. Updike on sex, Normal Heights house, snot boy, boys and guns
Next Article

A 41-minute Night Parade of One Hundred Demons

Earthless, Heather Nation, Donna Larsen, X-Offenders, Stone Temple Pilots
Farewell, free movies
Farewell, free movies

The new Central Library opened its doors on September 30, 2013, with what appeared to be a commitment to the Film Forum screening series.

The morning email brought dire tidings for one of our town’s longest-running film programs. Series devotee Pat Pepper writes, “For 31 years the San Diego Public Library has shown quality movies free of charge via Film Forum. This valuable program is set to end in November. It would be very excellent if Scott Marks tries to save Film Forum as he did the Ken Cinema.”

I’m good, but it’s doubtful the power needed to hack through this amount of bureaucratic red tape is harnessed in my veal-like limbs. Pat received the news directly from program curator, Ralph DeLauro — the man keeping the show afloat for over three decades — during his introduction to Tuesday night’s presentation of the French comedy, If You Don’t, I Will.

The program ends with November’s series. The decision impacts all of the branch libraries where Ralph took his show on the road.

Ever spend three hours being dodged by librarians? That’s how long it took to get a call back after filling inboxes with voicemails. A brief chat with library Sr. Public Information Officer Marion Moss Hubbard was followed up by this list of “speaking points” from library director Misty Jones:

The San Diego Public Library has had a long term relationship with Ralph DeLauro and we appreciate what he has done on the Film Forum through the years. Films at the Library will not be going away. We have received requests from the community to branch out. We are exploring new opportunities to reach more people and be more inclusive as well as ways to stretch out programming dollars. This exploration will include rotating among film experts in the community and developing new community partnerships.

“Stretch out programming dollars” no doubt means a reliance on staff members to keep it going rather than paying an expert in his or her field to continue running the show. Ralph’s future with the library is unclear. When asked, Ms. Hubbard paused before saying, “I’m not sure.”

As a valuable asset to the local film community, it’s a shame to see Ralph’s program fold. I’m a fine one to talk, having never once in almost two years visited the facility, but damn if the venue doesn’t serve a purpose. I go to bed every night thankful for the opportunity to get into movies for free. The old days of second-run two-dollar houses are deader than Clint Eastwood’s chances of luring Doris Day out of retirement. A lot of movie fans don’t have the extra entertainment dollars needed to drop on a $12 ticket. For many, this was their one shot to see quality films in a theatre and with an audience.

For those wanting to start a write-in campaign, this list of administrative contacts is as good a place as any to get the ball rolling.

There will be a screening of the terrific music documentary The Wrecking Crew on November 2 with director Denny Tedesco in attendance. Come as a show of support, and stay for what will no doubt be one of Ralph’s crowning achievements.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Chef Budda Blasian Soul Food is getting a food truck

The family-operated pop-up has thrived on word of mouth, and sumptuous fried chicken
Next Article

Eureka!: like the Samoa Cookhouse fed the lumberjacks

California’s oldest restaurant and a North County bargain
Comments
3

Petco Park killed this program. Whenever a ball game is scheduled, the parking fee AT THE LIBRARY goes up to $20, and it often coincides with the movie. I don't recall reading about that little detail back when the library was proposed or built. Good luck finding a place on the street to park. That's one of the things wrong with San Diego; the ball games are more important than the libraries.

Thanks to all involved for providing some great movies and giving the public an opportunity to enjoy a theater presentation at a price they can afford.

Sept. 24, 2015

Bad news in this sad story, amplified by the information from Javajoe25. Jamming the Central Library onto a tiny lot in the JMI Realty Zone of Interest, aka Petco Park, was always a bad idea. I have only been there once since it opened, and there was limited free parking available in the garage, but the site is congested and the number of homeless people in the vicinity was absolutely Dickensian.

But now Scott can turn his attention to the imminent opening of "The Lot," a new small multiplex in mid-village La Jolla with a bunch of bells and whistles and an admission price of $22 to $24 per person. Unlike the Central Library, I probably will never go even once to this place. Too bad they razed a perfectly good grocery store for such a project.

Sept. 24, 2015

Don't make me laugh, Mon. You know my lips are chapped.

Sept. 25, 2015

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close