Written by Joe Scotchie Friday, 05 August 2011 00:00
Over the past several years, John Carpenter has made Massapequa the Classic Movie Capital of Long Island as thousands of New Yorkers have traveled to that village to view an eclectic array of movies from Hollywood’s Golden Age.
Carpenter has also shown such films in locations as different as Lindenhurst and East Meadow. But when he shows his films in Massapequa, they are always at the Bar Harbor Library. Now, Carpenter will be showing a 1932 classic, Love Me Tonight on Thursday, Aug. 11 at his home parish, Our Lady of Lourdes. The viewing will begin at 7 p.m. The film, which tells the story of a common tailor who wins the love of a princess, stars Hollywood legends Maurice Chevalier and Jeanette MacDonald.
Carpenter’s moving showings have not only earned him the nickname The Movie Man, but they have also recreated the experience of community unification that movies performed in decades past, especially during the bleak days of The Depression. Participants share laughter, songs, make new friendships, and enjoy true family entertainment in a neighborhood movie house setting.
For instance, at a recent showing of a Charlie Chan double feature at the Bar Harbor Library, Carpenter introduced two of his youngest fans to the audience, a brother and sister from Bayside. Nicholas, the brother, has had his springs and summers changed by a gift from The Movie Man. Several years ago, Carpenter gave Nicholas a DVD of the sports classic, Pride of The Yankees, the legendary film about New York Yankee immortal, Lou Gehrig. Nicholas was so impressed by the film and the heroics of the great Iron Horse that he decided he wanted to play ball himself. Nicholas had just finished his third year in the highly competitive Bayside Little League program, playing for one of that league’s top teams and he publicly expressed his gratitude to the generosity of The Movie Man.
Carpenter’s achievements have not gone unnoticed by local politicians. State Assemblyman Joseph Saladino (R.-Massapequa) has attended his events, while Rep. Peter King (R.-Seaford) recently sent a letter of congratulations to Carpenter, praising him for bringing a “sense of pride” to Massapequa and for unifying residents though the magic of cinema.
Admission to Love Me Tonight is free, but any donation toward the parish would be appreciated. As always, the evening will feature The Movie Man’s knowledgeable lecture prior to the film and a question and answer session afterwards.
Our Lady of Lourdes is located at 855 Carmans Rd. Call 541-3270 for more information.