The Jameson Cult Screenings have been properly exciting events since their inception, with movies like Snatch, Alien, Reservoir Dogs, Silence Of The Lambs and The Usual Suspects all given the interactive treatment. Each film is shown in a secret location, with costumed actors and sets designed specifically to immerse the audience in the movie-going experience.
Last night’s Cult Screening was Jaws, and once again Jameson pulled out all of the stops. Shown in The Tivoli Theatre on Francis Street, those invited were greeted outside by a lifeguard in shorts, braving the elements, warning folks not to go into the water, and a Chief Brody lookalike shaking hands as we entered "Amity Island". Inside you're welcomed with a Jameson cocktail, an energetic DJ set and two fishermen arguing on a jetty, with the giant "Welcome To Amity Island" banner defaced just like in the movie. Once everyone arrives, it's up to the auditorium to watch the movie.
On the stage beneath the screen is a small portion of Amity Island's beach, the stern of the Orca fishing boat, and a chalkboard with a shark drawn on it. Right before the movie starts, 'Quint' comes out and humorously tells us all the rules on fire exits and mobile phones while paraphrasing his shark-catching pitch. Then it’s time for the show.
Throughout the movie, portions of the stage light up when actors come out and re-enact scenes as they happen simultaneously on screen; the flirty lovers run at the start of the movie, the young girl shouting "Shark!" in the pond, the mother searching for her just-eaten son, etc. These happen amid atmospheric lighting and a misty fog hangs over the audience.
Then, the piece de resistance. During the climax, as Brody is hanging off the sinking Orca both on the screen and on the stage, taking shots at the shark, small splashes on stage represent his missed bullets hitting the ocean. But when he finally hits his target, the gas tank in the shark's mouth, things get truly spectacular: On screen it explodes, but in the audience every last person is drenched by hidden water jets. Amazing.
Finally, the tension is relieved and the movie is over. Everyone can relax and dry off over another Jameson, get their photo taken with "Quint" and "Brody", and discuss which movie they'd like to see Jameson Cult Club do next. (cough cough, Fight Club please, cough cough) Congrats Jameson. Can't wait for the next one, and for the Jameson Dublin International Film Festival come February!