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The Alamo Drafthouse, Fantastic Fest & Fantastic Arcade announced the 2010 “Movies in the Park” lineup of free outdoor screenings in Republic Square today. Check out the fantastic line-up of movies and fun! Bring your family and come enjoy a new twist on Austin night-life. All movies are free. Amusing pre-show antics start at 7:30 p.m. and movies start at dusk. Arrive early and have a picnic! For more information visit the Movies in the Park page.

Movies in the Park: RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK

Wednesday, September 1st at 8:00 PM (Republic Square Park)

Presented by The Downtown Austin Alliance

Steven Spielberg’s RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK plays like an anthology of the best parts from all the Saturday matinee serials ever made. It takes place in Africa, Nepal, Egypt, at sea and in a secret submarine base. It contains trucks, bulldozers, tanks, motorcycles, ships, subs, Clippers, and a Nazi flying wing. It has snakes, spiders, booby traps and explosives. The hero is trapped in a snake pit, and the heroine finds herself assaulted by mummies. The weapons range from revolvers and machine guns to machetes and whips. It’s a Boy’s Own Adventure, a whiz-bang slam-a-rama. It’s done with a kind of heedless joy. Spielberg was old enough (34) to have the clout to make the film, and young enough to remember why he wanted to. (Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun Times)

Movies in the Park: THE WIZARD

Wednesday, September 8th at 8:00 PM (Republic Square Park)

Presented by Fantastic Arcade

In this ode to 8-bit gaming, Fred Savage takes his emotionally stunted, virtual-savant younger brother across the United States to play in the video championships. He’s competing to be the top gamer in the world, and to prove it he’s got to play a brand new game no one’s ever heard of: Super Mario Bros 3.

While it’s hard to imagine a world in which SMB3 didn’t exist, this movie actually introduced our country to the wonder that was this great adventure. Warp Whistles, the Raccoon Suit, the Koopa Kids, Chain Chomp, whatever the heck a Tanooki Suit is; all of this and more were first just dazzling images in this wonderful movie about the true love of video games. So strap on your Power Glove (“It’s so…bad!”) and come remember when video games were still imaginative and when a 12-year old boy could star in a movie that was actually good.

Movies in the Park: THE LAST STARFIGHTER

Wednesday, September 15th at 8:00 PM (Republic Square Park)

Presented by Fantastic Arcade

What sweaty-browed video game aficionado hasn’t pretended, while feverishly pounding away on their Playstation control, that they were actually saving the universe? That’s the conceit employed in 1984’s THE LAST STARFIGHTER, a lightweight yet wholly entertaining sci-fi adventure that’s come to command a special place in the heart of my disaffected generation. Our hero is the mild-mannered and anxious trailer-park denizen Alex Rogan. After mastering the local Starfighter video game, Alex is visited by an interstellar messenger who delivers a curious message: The game Alex has been dominating is much more than a simple plaything; a planet desperately in need of savvy star pilots has planted these games on Earth in an effort to find new recruits. Imagine that! Excel at a video game and you’re drafted to save a distant planet! How very cool. (Scott Weinberg)

Movies in the Park: PEE WEE’S BIG ADVENTURE

Wednesday, September 29th at 8:00 PM (Republic Square Park)

Presented by Mellow Johnny’s Bike Shop

There is only one truth in this life: PEE-WEE’S BIG ADVENTURE is the FUNNIEST MOVIE EVER MADE. If anyone tells you different, they’re just trying to start trouble. Watch the most entertaining man who has ever roamed the earth embark on a cross-country quest to reclaim his kidnapped best friend: a bicycle. Along the way, ol’ P.W. will encounter tough-as-nails bikers, giant dinosaurs, wild animals, ninjas, chubby billionaires, escaped convicts, buckin’ broncos, tone-deaf hobos, unwanted romance, fibbing gypsies, clumsy Godzillas, basement-less Alamos, vengeful boyfriends and even an undead trucker! Fun didn’t exist until Pee-Wee invented it, and now the most funrocious, funtacular, fungorious funsplosion in the history of FUN will be presented on the big BIG screen in a gorgeous 35MM print!

Movies in the Park: POLTERGEIST

Thursday, October 14th at 8:00 PM (Republic Square Park)

Presented by Fantastic Fest

This partnership between Steven Spielberg, Frank Marshall and Tobe Hooper is the great real estate horror film of all time. Starring Craig T. Nelson as a partriarch in charge of a haunted household and featuring some of the creepiest supporting characters of the ’80s (little blonde-haired Heather O’Rourke as Carol Anne, little raspy-voiced Zelda Rubinstein as Tangina Barrons), POLTERGEIST is a ghost story for our generation, hitching up the Indian burial ground angle with a more current medium – they come through the TV! The film that made us all afraid to watch the tube will give you bumps on your arms and static on your set. Make sure to unplug your TV before the show!!

Movies in the park is sponsored by the Downtown Austin AllianceMellow Johnny’sAlamo Drafthouse CinemaFantastic FestFantastic Arcade, and The Austin Parks and Recreation Department