For roughly two years neighbors myself and Shailah Stewart would bump into each other at block parties and other local events. Often the conversation would turn to movies, and how there wasn't a regular venue for them in JP.
Last summer, I approached Shailah with a proposal, "Why don't we do something about this, instead of waiting for it to happen?"
"I'm in," was the succinct reply.
In December last year JP Movie Night (JPMN) was born.
Focusing mostly on independent films with a local connection, JPMN is a new organization whose mission is to bring the various communities of JP together through a love of film. At the debut last December we screened the first of a short film series "The Pineapple Diaries" made by JP based filmmaker, Paloma Valenzuela, and "Now, Forager" a feature length film by Emerson College instructors Julia Halperin and Jason Cortlund.
The response was impressive. With minimal advertising the inaugural showing drew more than 40 attendees.
With that success under our belt, we are forging ahead with plans to make JPMN a monthly event with the next night being hosted at the venerable Doyle's Cafe on Feb. 2.
"We really want to bring the various communities of JP together and we think these excellent films will appeal to many," said Stewart.
Showing at Doyle's will be another installment of "The Pineapple Diaries" and the feature length documentary "The Blind Boys of Alabama: How Sweet the Sound" made by Boston filmmaker Leslie McCleave, which covers the career of the Grammy award winning gospel/blues group.
The suggested donation for attending is $8, with part of the proceeds being shared with the filmmakers themselves, and attendees are encouraged to grab dinner at Doyle's, too.
I ask, "What is more fun than a traditional dinner and a movie?"
"Actually, TWO movies!" said Stewart.
The next JP Movie Night is Saturday, February 2, 7 pm at Doyle's Cafe (3484 Washington St.). Suggested donation $8. Screening "The Pineapple Diaries" (22 minutes), and "The Blind Boys of Alabama: How Sweet the Sound" (93 minutes). For more info visit the JP Movie Night Facebook page.