The Bouncer of the Coliseum

The Bouncer of the Coliseum

I have mentioned the Coliseum Theater in Seattle in two former posts, filed in the “Memories” category, but have not yet spilled any ink (nor emitted any electrons) describing it. When it opened in 1916, it had the distinction of being the first theater in Seattle (if not the entire country) specifically designed for showing film. The secret was in the floor. The design called for a curve to the floor of a sufficient pitch that one had a clear sight line over the people in the row in front of you – not unlike the theory behind the stadium type seating that revolutionized movie theater design in the 1990s.

Another strange detail about its design – was the lack of stage space – it was tall and wide, but had no depth. The screen was mounted on that shallow back wall. (I understand from my research that this was a choice by the owner at that time – Alexander Pantages, who, though his was a vaudeville circuit, intentionally cut down on the scale to save on the number of musicians and stagehands he had to hire).

By this time – the mid-70s, there were no muscians (except for those neon ones up on the revolving sign above the marquee), and there was one lone stagehand. Or half a stagehand, as they shared one with my theater the Fifth Avenue up the street. (Again this was the redoubtable Walt Coy).

Gone for the moment were the big Hollywood productions from the Coliseum’s screen. Instead the invasion of violent Hong Kong Kung Fu flicks and blaxploitation bombshells exploded daily in its auditorium. As a consequence the company thought it prudent to have a bouncer on hand to control any instances of patrons imitating the bad behavior of their favorites up on the screen. Into this latest incarnation of the Coliseum stepped my bride of just a few months.

[Aside – My uncle Bud was then the manager of the theater. She had worked for him when he was assistant to my Dad at the GCC Renton Village Cinemas. He knew what a great cashier she was, and hired her, no nepotism required.]

The box office in which my wife spent most of her time, was out in front of the entrance, situated at the corner of Fifth and Pike. It was literally all by itself – an island – cut off from the rest of the building. One gained entrance by stooping over and waddling through the low half door – the only way in or out.

All went well until the night the projector broke down. My uncle announced to the patrons inside that the problem could not be fixed and that they could repair to the box office and there receive passes for another day. They soon surrounded my wife, sitting in the glass fishbowl that was the box office. None of them wanted a pass. They all loudly demanded their money back. Strangely, to a man they all argued that they were from out of town and only in for the night, and would not be coming back any time soon. It felt to her like a riot was about to break out.

Before that could happen, the Coliseum bouncer stepped in. His name was Bobby, a black, ex-prizefighter from Chicago. (The rumor circulating the district had him on the lam from the Windy City, hiding out from a vindictive mobster). I had heard of the description “caulifower ear” before, but had had no concept of what that even meant – until I saw Bobby – and that vegetable like appendage attached to his head. Even then it was an afterthought to your consciousness, as he had an overwhelming presence. To call him “solid” is an understatement – more like a brick wall in motion. Yet for all his power and mass (and cauliflower ear), he had the sweetest and gentlest temperament.

He soon had things in hand, and when through, escorted my wife from the Coliseum to my theater.

My wife was shaken, understandably. And I did not object nor try to dissuade her when she decided to resign the next day. (She soon found a job at Virginia Mason Hospital, where she was the one weilding a knife when surrounded by carrots and celery).

We still paid an occasional call to the Coliseum. Shortly after this time, its bill of fare changed and a couple of back to back blockbusters settled in. That is where we caught The Towering Inferno, followed six months later by Jaws. The Coliseum was the only place to see them in the Seattle area.

And still under the protection of Bobby.

Singing in the Rain in Seattle

Singing in the Rain in Seattle

I may have been beginning my junior year in college, but I was probably at the post graduate level for viewing films, all thanks to the Harvard Exit.

Around town the latest features were:

The French Connection – still racing down the suburban screens after opening the year before

The Godfather – packing them in at the 7th Avenue

Deliverance – floating down the river at the Music Box

Superfly – jiving at the Town

Ground Star Conspiracy – at my dad’s theater the Renton Village Cinema (bet you’ve never seen nor even heard about that one)

And as I mentioned last time, I was tearing tickets at the Cinerama for Woody Allen’s “Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex * But Were Afraid to Ask.”

My girl friend and I did see five of the six listed above, but we were more interested in films of an older vintage. Films that were in good supply at Seattle’s premier revival house, all (or almost all) in glorious black and white.

It was at this time that we caught up with the film that beat out not only The Maltese Falcon but also Citizen Kane for the Best Picture Oscar for 1942. That film was John Ford’s How Green Was My Valley. I must say that I think Kane was robbed, but I also can see why Valley won. Both had stunning cinematography and magnificent ensemble casts. (And yes, I do love Ford’s films very much). Obviously in the mind of the voters, one just razzled while the other dazzled.

We took in a comedy double bill of Duck Soup and Horsefeathers, following the serious drama of Valley. Cinematography was not the distinctive for the Marx Brothers films. The sparkle came from the antics and patter of the madcap quartet. It was a good portent, for now I was anticipating catching the brothers (pared down to a trio) in A Night at the Opera. I say that I was anticipating it, not so much Karen, whose taste in comedy runs along different lines. Hurrah for Rufus T. Firefly.

In the comedy line, we both enjoyed Buster Keaton in The General which popped up on the Exit’s schedule a few weeks later. This had been on my Must See list ever since reading about it in Brownlow’s The Parades Gone By. And it did not disappoint. One marvels at Keaton’s comic genius, a genius which can engineer comedy gold out of large inanimate objects. Every time we pass by Cottage Grove down in Oregon, I long to get off and go in search of the places where Keaton filmed what many consider his masterpiece. It was the only place in the US at the time that had the right track gauge for the trains he wanted to use.

And now, for the whole reason for this post. (It seems I have veered, -I swear it was unplanned – into the comedy genre). What I want to blog about is the best comedy film of all time, and the best musical film of all time. They are one and the same. And I will define it even further – Singing in the Rain is the most perfect movie made under the Hollywood studio system.

I can state truthfully that neither of us knew what we were in for when we took our seats at the Harvard Exit that night. Right from the opening credits through which Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O’Connor sing and dance the title tune, all the way to the HAPPY ending, we were treated to a rollicking good time. It was exhilirating, and dare I say intoxicating, in the best sense –  a joy and a delight to see Kelly dance (not only in his famous solo reprise of the title tune, but throughout), and jaw-dropping wonder at O’Connor’s solo turn that made us laugh. And sweet, winsome Debbie Reynolds won our hearts completely.

And the contrast with the black and white films we had seen could not have been greater. The colors popped off the screen. I could say that the colors “sang and danced” too. All the elements came together – cast, crew, sets, costumes, writing, songs, choreography to make a sweet cinema confection.

We were not alone. Leo the Lion roared at the beginning and the audience roared its approval at the end.

Note – we recently saw the new release The Intern, a film directed by Nancy Meyers and starring Robert DeNiro and Anne Hathaway. We were delighted that a clip from Singing in the Rain was used to effect as the title character is remembering a time when he and his now departed wife had watched it together. It was a poignant moment. (And it was all my wife could do, not to burst out into song along with it).

The Really Big Screen

The Really Big Screen

I was no longer working at the GCC Renton Village Cinemas. After a brief hiatus as a sales clerk in a bookstore at South Center in Tukwila (made brief by my forgetting to hold the last copy of a book for a customer who called in to reserve it), I was back in show business as a doorman at the Cinerama in downtown Seattle. It was a good fit. My school – Seattle University – was not too far away, just up on First Hill.

My tenure there was made interesting by the fact that it was the first time that a company changed hands while I was employed by it. It would not be the last time. When I was hired, the theater was owned by United (aka Pacific) theaters, noted in the Seattle area as a drive-in circuit. They only ran three hard tops in the state. Later, Sterling Recreation Organization (SRO) acquired those three theaters and added them to their mammoth chain. [Aside – Paul Allen now owns it, and has spared no expense in bringing it up to date.]

The building sat (and still does) between 4th and 5th Avenues on Lenora Street. The lobby windows faced Lenora, which was my point of view when manning the “door.” I was right across from the box office. People came in to buy their tickets, and when it was busy they went back ouside to line up along 4th Avenue. Sometimes when it was real busy I needed to go out and check the line. We had signs that I had to move every once and a while. They read “Ticket Holders Line.” You wouldn’t want them to be waiting there for ages, not realizing they were in the wrong line, especially if they hadn’t gotten their tickets. And if the line was particularly long, I would reassure them that there was plenty of room. In fact the line had to go around the block plus, before the auditorium would fill up. Amazing how many people can be strung out in a line (sorry, unintended double entendre, it was the 70s after all).

The auditorium was red, seats and curtains. There were a little over 800 seats total, so it was just a bit smaller than Cinema 1 in Renton, but it always seemed so much bigger. The customers were fed into it from the right and the left into a central traverse aisle, from which you went back into the higher seats, or down to those seats closer to the screen.

And it was unlike any screen with which I was familiar. Usually it is all of one piece, stretched out in a frame and mounted at the front of the auditorium. This one was made up of over one thousand – one inch wide strips of screen material, placed side by side in a curved arc, and stretched their full length of 35 feet onto a frame, and attached bottom and top.  And like their flat counterparts, they were each perforated to better allow the sound from the speakers to pass through. So to look at it from your seat, you were only aware of this huge screen that filled about a hundred feet across the front, and bowed away from you at the center.

It was a very impressive theater in which to view a film.

me and American Grafitti

me and American Grafitti

The summer of 1973 was coming to a close. I was still at the Renton Cinemas working as an usher and a doorman. Changes lay around the corner though, all of which I was happily unaware.

What I was aware of was my excitement for an upcoming release, booked for the Cinemas. The buzz out of LA and the GCC booking department was that a ground breaking film was going to light up the waning days of summer. They had screened a film by a young film student George Lucas. And they were high on it. The title was a little out of the ordinary, a puzzler actually – AMERICAN GRAFITTI.

The booking department was right. American Grafitti became a surprise sleeper hit. We simply did not have enough seats for all the people who wanted to see it. I saw it. Many times. And in many pieces. And its music filled the auditorium.

For it was a favorite to slip in on and catch a scene here and there. And indulge in the usher’s pastime – watching the audience. (A wise man once told me that there are three audiences – others; you, yourself; and the audience of One [God]). Here I was an audience to the audience. And I was enjoying their pleasure in seeing something for the first time.

The all time favorite scene to catch was the race at the end between Ron Howard and Harrison Ford (and the build up supplied by Booker T and the MGs – Green Onions). There was a built in excuse. An usher had to be on hand anyway, to open the doors and direct the customers out. Word had circulated that an in-joke had been included by the filmmakers when they made this film. The license plate for Harrison Ford’s vehicle read THX138, a reference to Lucas’ student film THX1138, which he later remade into his first feature film for Warners.

After hearing this, I went in to check it out. And the rumors were right. There it was in Technicolor. But I also couldn’t help but notice the license plate on the other car. GLD204. Did that mean anything?

Then it came at me in a rush. The GL must stand in for George Lucas; and after a puzzling moment I decided that the D must be for Director. And it all made perfect sense. Perhaps it is all only a coincidence, but…

In a town where you are only as good as your last project, film, or whatever; you are in competition with yourself, always having to surpass the one before.

Cue – All Summer Long by the Beach Boys.

My Brother’s Accident

My Brother's Accident

I was working the matinee at the Renton Cinemas the day the call came. The show was in, all the tickets torn. All that remained was guarding the entrance, standing by the doorman’s ticket box.

The phone call came in to my Dad in his office. He left immediately stopping by my station to fill me in. My Dad had been called to go directly to the hospital. My brother had been in a car accident and was now in emergency. He had been out riding with friends in their ’65 Chevy Impala SS, and not wearing a seatbelt. They were traveling down I-405 and went off the road. But not just off the road. At this section of that freeway there was a forty foot drop to a narrow lane that ran between a building and a wall that buttressed the freeway roadbed.

My Dad then left. And I was standing there with my thoughts. History between brothers. Older to younger. When we were quite small, I was horribly jealous of my little brother in an unreasoning way (sibling rivalry can do that to you). I used to rage on him with all the spite of my five year old body, striking him repeatedly on the back of his neck. It all came to an end after my Mom took him to the doctor and brought back the report that I was doing severe damage to the nerves in his neck. Fear brought an end to my actions. (It’s been quite a few years now, but I did talk to him about this in the nineties and asked for his forgiveness, and he did).

All I could do was pray. So right in that moment, I laid my hands on either side of the ticket box, bowed my head and prayed. I asked God for the life of my brother. I did not know what his state was then, even whether he was alive or not. The situation certainly seemed dire to me. Minutes passed in this fervency. When I had poured it all out, and there seemed nothing else to add, I stopped.

The prayer was answered.

I rejoiced when I heard that he was alive and would live. But he would be in the hospital for a while. His left leg had broken, a spiral break of the femur bone. So consequently, he was to be in a full body cast for the next three months.

He missed going on the family vacation that summer – to California (and specifically to Disneyland – the first time for all of us). But he was alive, and would live.

I didn’t pray after that time that I can remember. I do remember being grateful. But that was fleeting.

I do not think it strange in the light of this, that for the last thirty years I have had as a main ministry since becoming a believer – intercessory prayer – spending time with the Lord on behalf of other people and their needs.

All praise to the Lord who hears our cry.

Intolerance in West Seattle

Intolerance in West Seattle

I don’t know how I heard about it. It was probably a movie ad in the newspaper, perhaps brought to my attention by my dad, who regularly perused that section of the paper. He needed to keep abreast of what was playing elsewhere, and more importantly checking up on the ads for the Cinema I and II in Renton. Having the show times correct was always a major concern, right under whether or not the right films were listed.

There was a theater in West Seattle that was running silent films (it was actually an organ society that rented this old theater from the owner John Danz of Sterling Theaters). It was located on California Avenue in West Seattle. On their schedule for an upcoming weekend was D. W. Griffith’s epic film “Intolerance.” And I had been wanting to see it ever since I read about it in Kevin Brownlow’s The Parade’s Gone By (see my post The Parade’s Gone by the Stationery Store). So, here was my chance.

It was far afield from our familiar stomping grounds that encompassed only Renton, Tukwila, Bellevue and Seattle, and points in between. But not outside of that circle. West Seattle was like an island separated off from the rest of the area. So my girl friend and I took an exit from I-5 north and crossed the low area above Boeing field and below the Port of Seattle. West Seattle was some high ground on the other side. And California Avenue followed the ridgeline of that high ground.

On the posters out front of the theater, the name of the organist loomed bigger than most of the other credits.  That made sense once we were in and seated. The organ down in front was a monster – a Wurlitzer to be precise – or a 4 / 32 Wurlitzer to be absolutely precise. It looked as complicated as a control console in a space capsule. A small staircase of four keyboards was surrounded by a rainbow of switches. And that just kept the organist’s fingers busy. Below there was plenty to keep his feet dancing. (My organ teacher, Doris Terrill, back in Brockton, Mass would have been in heaven).

The evening led off with a mini concert on this organ, and moved smoothly into the movie itself. I watched entranced a D W Griffith wove the threads to four separate stories in four separate time lines into an exciting tapestry. [No spoilers ahead]. Intolerance is the theme throughout, cropping up in each story – the Babylonian/Persian section  – the story of Christ and His Crucifixion – France in the 16th Century and the St Batholomew’s Day Massacre – and a modern (i.e. 1915 modern) story of a young couple torn apart by societal forces. And the organ added more than musical accompaniment, chiming in with sound effects – whistles, car horns, etc., at the appropriate cue.

And the constant reminder (a poetic touch) of the hand rocking the cradle.

The Seat Hopper

The Seat Hopper

As I’ve mentioned one of the jobs of an usher is to periodically check the auditoriums. Usually this would be some time after the feature started. You wanted to be sure that nothing was going on that shouldn’t be. You would enter one aisle, check the screen to make sure there was a picture up there, – that it was in focus etc., check the thermostat, spot any smokers and ask them either to go out to the lobby or to put it out. You then would exit out and go over to the other aisle, check the same things there (and to confirm that anyone you had had to talk to was complying with your request).
Once on one of these forays I ran into a little situation. I had just come in to the small side – Cinema II, and paused to get my bearings – sometimes you had to acclimate your eyes to the light, especially if the scene then on was a night time shot. It was a matinee and the auditorium was sparsely populated. A family had just entered, a mom and her kids. The mom chose to sit in the back, and her three kids raced down to the front of the auditorium and plunked down somewhere in the first five rows.
I was about to leave when I noticed someone sitting on the side section, get up and walk to a seat on the same side further down and across from the children. I had an uncomfortable feeling. I decided to stay.
He then got up and moved to the center section in the row behind them. We had a term for people that behaved in this manner – a seat hopper. They weren’t just trying to find a better view from which to watch the film, they wanted to offer a view of themselves, or worse. My father had told me about an incident with one back in Peabody, MA. Now it looked to me like we had one here in Renton, WA.
I strode down the aisle, and entered the row with the kids. I told them that they would need to move back with their mother. They didn’t want to leave, but reluctantly preceeded me up the aisle. I felt satified that any potential problem was nipped in the bud. The kids were out of harm’s way, and the “hopper” knew he was being watched.
However, the mother came out of her row and met me on the aisle. She upbraided me in a torrent of words, unintelligible to me – for you see, she could not speak a word of English. But I could tell, in her mind I was the villain that had chased her children away from where they had wanted to sit. I couldn’t explain my action. I could only stand there and take her villification.
Having said her piece, she gathered her brood around her and sat down.
I headed out with the words from that old saw nagging in my brain – “No good deed goes unpunished.”

Swiss Family Critic

Swiss Family Critic

Disney, through Buena Vista, their distribution arm, had a strategy in place since the fifties. You never saw their animation or live action features on the small box. After its release, they were locked up in their vault, only to be released after seven years had passed, the theory being that they would have a whole new generation to which to market it. And it worked. (And still does – since they do something similar with their DVD releases).
Now, in January of 1969, it was Swiss Family Robinson’s turn. I had seen it for the first time when my folks took us to see it at a drive-in theater in Spokane, Washington. I actually enjoyed it more than the playground down in front of the big screen. So I was excited to be able to see it again after seven years.
Things that you are enthousiastic about you like to share. And I was looking forward to the “usher” version of that – slipping into the theater for a favorite scene and experiencing it again with the audience – their first time, and my someteenth, enjoying their surprise or other type reaction to it.
Always a favorite was the pirate attack at the end. It was a heady concoction of action, suspense and comedy. Knowing that pirates were in their vicinity, the Swiss Family had made contingency plans to protect themselves: by building a redoubt on some high ground; putting together some coconut hand grenades; and placing logs and boulders at strategic places to roll down upon their attackers, and a personal favorite, the device rigged by Kevin Corcoran to warn of their enemies approach if they chose to scale the cliff at the back of their fort. Repeated viewings did reveal some of the secrets behind the movie magic. Everything happens at a break-neck pace, so the first time you see the rolling palm tree logs, chances are you didn’t notice one log with a pirate on each end that bowed severely in the middle when they all rolled across the top of a third, and rather plump pirate.
I was in a good frame of mind as I worked broom and dust pan, sweeping up spilled popcorn and wrappers in the entrance way to the theater that was playing Swiss Family. A thirtyish gentleman was standing there outside the closed door. I made the assumption that he had just seen the show and was waiting for the rest of his party before leaving. So I asked him how he had liked the show, assuming he had to have liked it. He rapidly disenchanted me of that notion.
From his snobbish height he looked down his nose upon my impertinence, and let me know in no uncertain terms that this film was nothing, nothing at all compared to the version he had seen in his youth. I was flumoxed. I’d never heard of another film based on the Wyss story. I thought perhaps he was confused and was actually remembering the first release of this version. When I put forth that interpretation, I offended him the more. He replied that his version had been made in the 1940s, and was in every way superior to this modern day interloper. He left me standing there, feeling no bigger than the popcorn kernel I was trying to sweep up.

(I wouldn’t learn until years later that there had been other versions. There was no IMDB in those days. There were some Film year books but I had no access to them. The version that he had no doubt seen was the 1940 RKO one starring Thomas Mitchell).

You Say Potato I Say Desoto

You Say Potato I Say Desoto

Since Evergreen High School in White Center was so far away, there was no school bus service near us. My folks would drop me off in the morning, but they couldn’t always pick me up. I remember a couple of times having to walk home after classes. It soon became paramount that I get my driver’s license and a car.
There were no openings in the Driver’s Ed class at school, at least not soon enough to satisfy my necessity. So instead we found a private company down on 1st Avenue where I enrolled.
The classes met in the evening, and after covering the basics in a classroom situation we were ready to hit the road.
I admit to being nervous. Not on the side streets where there was little or no traffic, but on the busy thoroughfares with traffic lights and multiple lanes. Add to that the fact that it was night time, and you felt like you were on a tightrope. Come time to take my test, it was day time, and I just passed. Maybe if it had night time I would have done better.
Soon afterwards I got my first car for a couple hundred bucks – a DeSoto, which rolled off the assembly line the very same year that I was born. Though my Dad said it ran like a top, is was definitely not your sporty ride. To my mind it was a clawfoot bathtub, flipped upside down and outfitted with wheels and windows. It was a two tone brown, almost faded pink – but one of the hues showing through in spots may have been actually the primer coat, as if some sand-blasting had uncovered it. But it moved. And it gave me an introduction to a clutch, which had not been covered in my Driver’s Ed class. You used the clutch only to shift into first gear, it was automatic after that.
It got me to school, and to work at the Cinema, and home again. I liked the drive to work, especially the back way through Tukwila to Renton. There was a freeway alternative, but I think the car felt more comfortable with a 35 mph speed limit.
But the Tukwila back way was the site of my first accident. It all happened one day after school on the way to work. I had a friend with me as a passenger. We were approaching an intersection where a bridge connected on the right. The bridge spanned I-405, and came up from the South Center Shopping center to the street we were traveling on.
A car coming up across that bridge either misjudged their timing or did not stop. They collided with us – their front left bumper to our front right. The DeSoto was built like a tank. I watched as the other vehicle bounced off, spun 180 degrees and was propelled back down the bridge hitting the abutment. We came to a screeching halt, and I watched in horror as my friend was thrown forward against the dashboard. As we sat looking at one another my jaw dropped, for the bone of his forehead appeared to be caved in. (For his part he probably thought my jaw was unhinged). He raised his hands to feel his forehead and then spoke to reassure me that all was fine. He told me not to worry, because his forehead had always been like that.
It was all rather confusing after that. I think my father picked us up (he doesn’t remember for sure). Since we were ambulatory neither of us was sent off to the hospital. The insurance companies took over, both vehicles were totalled. The other driver was injured and taken to the hospital, but I never heard much after that.
Fortunately the previous owner of the Desoto had fitted it up with seatbelts. At least for the front seat. Bolted in by hand, they had been secured to the floor well of the back seat.
Thank God for seatbelts.

The Renton Cinemas Open

The Renton Cinemas Open

As I stated previously, having my father on site was a real boon for his company GCC. He kept an eye on things (like wrestling the safe through the completed lobby and into his office), and headed off potential problems before they happened, or became costly errors.
The cinema was built on the property of a shopping mall area called Renton Village just off Grady Way. The shopping complex wasn’t as big as Brockton, but well attended none the less. Right down the sidewalk from the theater was the Sheraton Renton Inn, a high rise hotel. At the far extremity away from the theater was Schumsky’s restaurant, with which my father horse-traded passes for meals. A Tradewell grocery store and an Ernst hardware were the main anchors.
The big circuit in the Seattle area was the Sterling Recreation Organization, and as such had the film market pretty well sewn up. But GCC beng a national chain wasn’t without some influence. There were a few distributors that were very glad to see a new player in the area. In those days, Seattle had its own”Film Row.” The distributors kept offices down on Second Avenue. In the main we played Columbia, Universal, Buena Vista and MGM, which were headed up respectively by Al Boodman, Russ Brown, Homer Schmidt and Connie Carpou.
That being said, the two opening bills for the Renton Cinemas were not auspicious. On one side was the feature Duffy from Columbia and on the other Secret Ceremony from Universal. I suspect no else in the area wanted to play them. Between the doormen and us ushers the code word for the latter was “Secret Garbage.”
Duffy, which starred James Coburn in the title role, is noteworthy in my estimation only tangentially, through a couple of the people associated with it. One was Donald Cammell, a rather unusual avant garde type who worked on the screenplay and would later co-direct with Nicholas Roeg the Mick Jagger film Performance. He pushed the envelope so far he shot and killed himself some say on purpose. The other was the director Robert Parrish, at probably the extreme opposite end of the spectrum. He was Old Hollywood, having started there as a child actor in the thirties (City Lights and the Our Gang comedies), and graduating to film editor (Body and Soul) and later director.
Not a thing did I know of any of this. Of all I was blissfully ignorant. Such information came as my interest in film grew. For the time being I probably had a feeling akin to Parrish’s old boss at Columbia – Harry Cohn, whose talented butt was his barometer to taste in film – if it wiggled in the seat it was no good.

The Renton Cinemas Open 2