The Ohio Sci-Fi and Horror Marathons

The Official Forum of the Ohio Sci-Fi and Horror Marathons
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 2:06 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 03, 2006 9:15 am
Posts: 1959
Hello All,

Is it just me or does it feel like the Sci-Fi marathon is comiong to an end? The "Doom and Gloom" gets worse every year. Bruce is an amazing dude and we all know his creative hands are tied, so is it time for the marathon to die and be reborn in a different theatre, maybe in a different town?

What are the thoughts of the good people who walk this forum every day all year long?


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Last edited by Jaws3dfan on Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 6:11 pm 

Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2006 3:21 am
Posts: 279
Speaking as an original attendee since 1987 I'd say the "gloom and doom" has been on the wall for a few years now. Much of it doesn't really have a lot to do with the theater or Bruce or Jeff Frank. Just changing ways and ideals since 1987 to 2013. Much of the complaining I have heard just this year of people already saying they ARE NOT attending is because they can "just stay at home and watch those" or "I can just download all that". I know at least 5 people who won't be there for those exact reasons. With the taking out of the 35mm capabilities it has kind of reduced the marathon to just showing DVDs. No rare film prints. No 35mm trailers. Just spinning some coasters,as they say.
I also think the viewpoints of everything has changed too. Being 45 I remember the "good old days" of things at the Drexel North,the grindhouse nights of The Roxy on N. High Street(loved seeing Toxic Avenger and Surf Nazis there),pouring over every issue of Hoot to see when the next marathon and write up would be. It's the same with other factors, too. Back in the late 80s there was 27 comic book shops in Columbus. Now there is 5. Few people nowadays would remember SHOCC Comics,Neo Tokyo,The Roxy,Discount Paperback,MOnkey's Retreat,Hoot,Flippo,Fritz The Nite Owl,various drive-ins,etc. It is just kind of the end of a era/culture. No one's real fault. Just changing sensibilities. My golden time of life was 1979 and I too would love to have stayed in that era full of my cultural icons of comic books,horror films,monster magazines,drive ins,late night TV,etc. It was a great time period.
Now all that remembering aside,Boston,Chicago and LA are still thriving with such events so they aren't quite dead. I know that Cleveland Horror marathon got a nice turnout last year so there is a huge audience up that way as well. A think A LOT more advertisement and bringing together of cultures and areas might solve the problem but with apathy at an all time high we might just see ourselves saving our gas money for yearly trips to Chicago for their horror and sci-fi marathons if things don't clear up.

PostPosted: Fri Apr 26, 2013 1:13 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:51 am
Posts: 10
Location: Columbus, OH
It's definitely dying. I'm not so bothered by the inability to play 35mm at the marathon anymore because most theaters weren't taking proper care of the films or their equipment to show it properly and that was even more true anywhere that Jeff Frank was involved. I'd rather look at the positive aspects of digital even if that means that there might be Blu-rays involved; the amount of available films go through the roof and the presentation should be more consistent.

I also don't think that there's much excitement about showing newer major releases or new alternative sci-fi. It wouldn't be a big deal if there was only one new alternative sci-fi film played every year but this year it looks like there will be at least three, if not more. I know there's a lot of resistance to replaying films from past marathons but I think that thought process needs to change. I'd rather revisit some 60s, 70s, 80s (and even 90s) sci-fi films that haven't played the marathon in years than watch some of the alternative independent garbage that have played in recent years.

At this point I'd rather sit at home and program my own marathon and not have to deal with hours of intolerable sci-fi, rude cell phone users, uncomfortable seats, and limited concession options. The juice just isn't worth the squeeze anymore.

PostPosted: Sun Apr 28, 2013 5:31 pm 
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Joined: Sat Dec 11, 2010 3:28 pm
Posts: 616
Location: Beautiful Cleveland, Ohio.
Oh ye of little faith.
You don't have to disagree with the comments & cynicism expressed by Jaws, Infra & movieshate to suggest that they are taking a short term view of marathons.
Media changes. Differently aged persons are attracted by differing styles of presentations.
But box office and other measures seem to indicate that screen science fiction retains a market.
Could I suggest that a single person with dynamism and time could by themselves enlist enough volunteers to re-invigorate a , truthfully, somewhat fading institution?
I would volunteer. Others here have certainly suggested desire to contribute.
So. Get control of the overall process away from those who see it as no more than a one day film show. Get a sparky coordinator who has the time to organize publicity any participation and - - -
The films are there. We nerds are waiting with bated breath. So---. it's more than possible.
Energy & organization are what is required - and not a huge amount.

Thar’s only two possibilities: Thar is life out there in the universe which is smarter than we are, or we’re the most intelligent life in the universe. Either way, it’s a mighty sobering thought. - Walt Kelly

PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:14 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2008 8:49 am
Posts: 1473
Location: Columbus Ohio
It is time for the 30th SF Marathon to be its last. It needs to move over to the Grandview so Bruce have more control over it. Renamed it as well. The majority of the lineup is dreck that I don't care to see. Safety Not isn't a real science fiction movie and yet it got booked. Time of Robots is another Automatons. Were are films from the nineteen sixties through the nineteen nineties?

I'm still going for Danger 5 and a fan of Ultra 7 AKA Ultraman I want to see an Ultraman moive in a theater.

PostPosted: Tue May 07, 2013 3:05 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 06, 2006 8:14 pm
Posts: 625
Location: Los Angeles
Judging from some of the early recaps after this year's Marathon, it does seem like THIS particular incarnation of the "Marathon" is on its last gasp. I emphasize THIS version.

In Boston, we went through a fairly long and deep valley. We jumped theaters 4 times in 4 consecutive years. Attendence dipped. Fewer and fewer younger folks seemed to be attending their first Marathon. Etc. Etc.

But, this year, 2013, saw the best attendence in 15 or more years. More younger folks. More women. What happened?

1. We stabilized into one theater, The Somerville. Further, that theater has 35MM, DCP and DVD capability.

2. We began a Festival attached to the week prior to the Marathon. This has caused some issues, but, overall, it has increased Media, Internet and word-of-mouth attention to the big enchilada that concludes the week - The Marathon.

3. We have a set date. I know this is one of the big issues in Ohio. This is 2013. We live in a fast-moving, short-attention span era. You can't expect folks to plan their whole lives around keeping EVERY WEEKEND open between the end of March and Mid-May open just in case that is the particular weekend that ends up holding the Marathon. Pick a #$#$ing Date and stick with it! ("Easter" isn't an excuse. You can set up a 5 or 10 year advance date calendar around Easter)

4. Food. In Boston, there have NEVER been any restrictions on bringing in food (save for alcohol, bottles etc). It makes a difference. You're stuck in a theater for 24 hours, you need light healthy snacks to go along with a couple of heartier meals. Pizza, burritos are brought in and sold, and, sometimes, sandwiches and the like have been sold from the concession stand along with the traditional Popcorn etc... Since just about everybody has a decent home theater nowadays, if you are going to convince folks to get off the couch and watch stuff at a theater for 24 straight hours, you better allow them their creature comforts!

From the sounds of it, 3 if not all of the 4 above things that have 'saved' the Boston Marathon seem difficult to achieve under the current Drexel structure. It's not the Marathon that is beyond saving, but the management behind it.

Long Live the Orson Welles Cinemas

PostPosted: Sun May 19, 2013 8:16 pm 

Joined: Sat Aug 30, 2008 7:42 pm
Posts: 18
I too worry about it ending. I don't want it too. I would rather go back to the very first one and show every movie on the list. Let's do our own time traveling. And stop with the limits on food. That made it fun. Remember ordering a pizza from Dominos and sharing it with the row? There is nothing wrong with taking a step back into what worked. It will do it again. Those of us there want to relive the memories and those that weren't haven had the chance to see the movies and want to know what it was all about. Try it for a year at both cons and lets see what happens.

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