III: On Double Features

by Andrea Janes and R. Emmet Sweeney

Attending a double bill these days is an act of devotion, a genuflection before an eye-patched auteur or blood-spattered genre. These two-barreled day-wasters are now the preserve of repertory houses, but at one time they were everywhere, when the weekly dose of B-movie pulp, newsreel, and high-toned prestige pic was the studio-mandated regulation.

Now it’s one and done since the double feature went the way of the drive-in. Today, a double is the domain of the movie-lover, the nerd, the completist. (We’re talking theater-mandated twofers only, of course, as multiplex screen-jumping presents its own à la carte thrills.) But when all the preliminaries have been decided, the sight lines approved, and the nearest patrons smell-checked, the question looms: what do we do during intermission?

We hope you enjoy this excerpt.

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R. Emmet Sweeney writes for IFC News and Termite Art, while Andrea Janes is finishing a screenplay in which Mabel Normand solves a murder mystery. They eloped in order to have someone to go to the movies and eat mac and cheese with.

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