First Sunday Film Series Brings Forgotten Classics To The Library’s Big Screen

The First Sunday Film Series was put “on hiatus” after the December 2014 showing, which drew more than 30 people. A requests for information on the reason for the cancellation of the series did not resulted in a satisfactory response, but library administrators promise additional Sunday programming in the future.

The First Sunday Film Series at Fort Worth Library’s downtown branch gives you a chance to see classic films — some almost forgotten — on a big screen. You also get the benefit of a knowledgeable and entertaining host, a cartoon and door prizes, so why wouldn’t you show up?

For as long as my Sunday afternoons have been free, I’ve been attending the First Sunday Film Series and enjoying seeing so many films made before I was born or before I began to recognize the value of film as an art form. The series is a top-tier event that doesn’t seem to get the recognition or attendance it deserves.

About The First Sunday Film Series At Fort Worth Library

The free First Sunday Film Series features a wide variety of classic films from all genres, including drama, comedy, science fiction and more. The advantage of attending this event over simply getting a DVD of the featured film, if available, is that you and other film lovers can see the film together on the big screen. There are few opportunities to see most of the films offered in this series on a big screen with an audience.

5w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" /> A librarian lays out the facts about the film before a recent First Sunday Film Series screening. Each screening includes fun information, an introduction from Michael H. Price, a cartoon and door prizes. Photo by Gip Plaster.

The series is introduced by an interesting character: film critic and author Michael H. Price, a knowledgeable source of information on film and a unique man with a big personality. He’s the author of the “Forgotten Horrors” series of movie encyclopedias, volumes that have been in print continuously since 1979. But the film series doesn’t lean toward horror. Instead, it leans toward American classic films that aren’t easy to find these days or that have become overlooked in recent years.

Films are shown in the David L. Tandy Lecture Hall at the Fort Worth Library’s Central Library on the first Sunday of every month at 2 p.m. Free parking is available on the street and in the nearby 3rd Street Garage. The series is free because of funding from the Fort Worth Public Library Foundation and the David L. Tandy Foundation.

My Reflections On The Film Series

I haven’t always been a film buff, and this series at the library has allowed me a first opportunity to see many classic films. Titles I’ve seen for the first time at the series have ranged from a hard-to-find old version of Oliver Twist — a much better movie than I expect it to be — to the modern classic Stand and Deliver, which features understated performances by Edward James Olmos and Lou Diamond Phillips, two stars whose movie fame has been very limited.

There’s something I don’t understand about the series, however: why don’t more people attend since it involves proven movies and happens at a time that’s convenient for most people? Are some people put off by the parking, which isn’t complicated at all despite the downtown location? Are they afraid of the homeless people who hang out at the library, some of whom attend the film series faithfully? Are they simply unaware that the series is a fun and interesting way to spend a Sunday afternoon?

Sometimes, no more than a couple dozen people gather in the hall that could accommodate many more. Free things to do in Fort Worth are plentiful, but this year-round series is worth attending whether it’s raining outside or a beautiful spring day.

The Fort Worth Library and Michael H. Price are doing the community a service by showcasing great films, but it’s a real shame that more people aren’t taking advantage of this opportunity. Perhaps classic films aren’t cool at the moment, but with so much interest in film in Fort Worth right now — from a vibrant independent filmmaker scene to a successful screening series of silent films by the Lone Star Film Festival at the Kimbell — it’s genuinely difficult to understand why this series isn’t filled to capacity every month.

Good To Know

  • Parking is free and easy. There’s often street parking available, but the 3rd Street Garage is also nearby and free on evenings and weekends.
  • When you enter the front door of the library, go straight ahead to the main hallway, then turn right and go to the end of the hall. The lecture hall is located inside the gallery on the right.
  • Go early each time to enjoy the current exhibit of artwork and historical displays in the gallery — and explore the other services and materials available to you if you’re a citizen of Fort Worth or a city with borrowing privileges in the Fort Worth Library system. Anyone can look around, read books and magazines and benefit from the quiet, pleasant atmosphere.

For More Information

First Sunday Film Series

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