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The Greenville Drive-in features classic movies, ice cream sandwiches and cocktails. AKA Drive-in 32, because it’s on Rt. 32
That’s a Hudson! Not sure what year, but the company became part of AMC in 1954, so it’s older than that
A scene from the past. The old Hudson got a good spot early. The spaces filled up closer to sundown
Twilight at the drive-in
I think the Airstream is purely decorative, adding to the nostalgia of going to the drive-in. But it kinda looks functional…
Steve McQueen being cool on the drive-in screen
Steve McQueen still being cool as we re-watched Bullitt from our back-patio drive-in movie setup

Drive In Saturday Tuesday Movie Review: Bullitt

The Drive-In Saturday Tuesday Movie review series is, of course, named after the Bowie song but often has little more than that related to Bowie. For more Bowie, come back tomorrow…

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Movie: Bullitt (1968)
Bowie connection: None with the movie itself, but the Driove-in’s pre-feature musical loop included Nirvana’s cover of “The Man Who Sold the World.”

The experience: The Greenville Drive-in, in the northern Catskills town of Greenville, is an old-style drive-in that features classic movies and cocktails. My wife rented it out five years ago for my 50th birthday, where we had a Christmas in July party and showed Elf. My actual birthday is in January, but never mind that.

This past Saturday we saw the Steve McQueen detective movie, Bullitt, which neither of us had seen before. The movie is almost secondary. The setting was basically another time. I don’t exactly know why going to the drive-in is one of my favorite things to do, but part of it has to do with a sense of nostalgia I feel for a mythical time that I never really experienced, except of course at the drive-in.

The movie itself? We were expecting more. Steve McQueen certainly lived up to his reputation as the King of Cool. And there’s a famous chase scene through the streets of San Francisco that obviously inspired a lot of other subsequent chase scenes. And the end sequence at an airport seemed to have influenced movies from Heat (1995) to Casino Royale (2006). But it seemed like we missed something with the plot.

Well, we had been all over on Saturday. We drove from Albany to Bronxville, then we hiked up a mountain before getting to the drive-in. Maybe we dozed off. Yeah, that’s it. We did.

So the next day we downloaded Bullitt and projected it on our little home-made drive-in on our back patio and watched it again. Turns out we didn’t miss much. It’s just that the plot isn’t really very compelling. It’s a detective movie without much mystery to it. Things move from point a to point b to point c without a whole lot of plot twists. There’s one — one plot twist— but this movie is more about style than plot.

Plus, it’s cool to see the 1960s. I was really struck by how much that world looks like our world. Of course a lot has changed, but nobody was wearing anything they couldn’t have pulled off today. Airplanes pretty much look the same. Steve McQueen’s car would look even cooler today than then. The movie is 56 years old— things would have looked a lot more different 56b years before that (or, for that matter, two or three years after that).

Well, I’m glad I saw it. More importantly, it was a night at the drive-in, followed by movie night on the back patio. And that’s the best!

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Rating:
Two out of four sports cars

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