Matinee ★★★★½

Joe Dante’s coming of age comedy about a new horror movie opening in Key West during the Bay of Pigs is not only relevant due to the palpable feeling of societal fear prevalent both then and now but also because it’s a beautiful tribute to one of the things I’ve been missing most during quarantine: the theatrical experience! John Goodman’s character is a fictional version of the great horror director, producer, and showman William Castle who would turn his schlocky movies into community events filled with theatrical tricks and crowd participation. I just found out today would’ve been Castle’s 106th birthday which is a fun little coincidence. His autobiography Step Right Up! I'm Gonna Scare the Pants off America is a really great read and I hope that I one day get to see one of his films on the big screen with all of the original gimmicks intact!