Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

Home · Articles · News · Features · Meet the Movie Guy
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Meet the Movie Guy

Kristi Kates - April 26th, 2007
His official title is “President of the Petoskey Film Theater” - but most of the folks around Petoskey simply know him as “The Movie Guy.” Too familiar a name? Not at all - Craig Stutzky is perhaps one of the most congenial, friendly movie buffs you’ll ever meet, and either title is just fine by him.
An endoscopy technician at Northern Michigan Hospital by day, The Movie Guy by night, Stutzky resuscitated the Petoskey Film Theater in 2001, following in the footsteps of the original Petoskey Film Theater, which, in spite of a good effort, had stopped showing films back in 1999.
With his technical background in video production and photography, Stutzky figured he’d be a shoo-in to be the projectionist, and ended up instead taking on the jack-of-all-trades role, also doing advertising, MC duties, and selling concessions for the movies nights, which in 2001 began showing movies twice a month.
His love for the film industry is another element of what makes him the right person for the job... er, jobs. “I got involved just because I love movies,” Stutzky explains, “I especially like independent, foreign and documentary films, and after living in Ann Arbor for several years, I missed them when I moved up here.”

What a difference six years makes. Now, Stutzky shows movies twice a week, to the delight of movie buffs across the region. He has the assistance of the Petoskey Public Library, which provides a finished basement and projection equipment - namely, a BenQ video projector, a Sony DVD player, and a Magnavox Surround Sound System - in order to show the films in as high quality as possible.
The 100-year-old Carnegie Building, known as the “old” Petoskey Library, has become the Petoskey Film Theater’s base of operations. With gorgeous woodwork, floor-to-ceiling windows, and a 14-foot-wide movie screen, it’s a welcoming place to see a film, complete with air conditioning in the summer and a side lounge with a gas fireplace for cold winter movie nights.
And the price is right, too - the suggested donation for movie nights is $4, complete with complimentary bottled water. You can also purchase popcorn and boxed candies on-site or bring your own snacks.
But the movies are the best part of the deal. Stutzky puts a lot of effort into showcasing films that didn’t make it to the mainstream Petoskey theater, which local movie aficionados appreciate.
“I have several ways that I choose films,” Stutzky says, “I try to show recently released films -- mostly indie, international or documentary, that either didn’t make it to Petoskey or had very short runs here. I keep track of which films are generating buzz by following the film festival and major award nominees and winners. I keep track of the films that are mentioned on NPR’s ‘Fresh Air’ program. And, in addition, for the past two years I’ve attended the Traverse City Film Festival and have shown many of the films that appear at this small, but incredible film festival.”

As one can see, Stutzky’s approach is a far cry from throwing darts at an issue of Premiere magazine, and probably why this small-town film series is such a success. Some of the program’s most popular film showings to date have included “Iraq For Sale,” “The Pursuit of Happyness,” “A Prairie Home Companion,” “The Illusionist,” “Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont,” “The U.S. vs. John Lennon,” “Bobby,” and “An Inconvenient Truth,” with plenty more movies on the way this summer as the series expands to the park, as it does each year.
“About four years ago, I started showing some movies in downtown Petoskey’s Pennsylvania Park, on the side of the Watershed Council building,” Stutzky explains, “we showed four films the first year and we filled the park with a couple hundred people on blankets and lawn chairs each night. People just loved the idea of outdoor movies in the park. So I expanded to 10 movies the next year, and 16 the following summer.” The outdoor movies are more traditional fare than the edgier indoor series; some of the most popular outdoor films have included “Some Like It Hot,” “Casablanca,” and the original Star Wars trilogy.
Whatever the movie, Craig Stutzky will be on the case. While the local Petoskey multiplex continues to bring in the big blockbuster hits, Stutzky balances out the area’s film offerings with his careful selections and genuine love for film as an art form, and for what makes that art form truly great; good news for those who look forward to what the Petoskey Film Theater has to offer each week, and will offer, hopefully, for many years.

Catch a movie with the non-profit Petoskey Film Theater Wednesday and Friday nights at 7:30 pm at the Petoskey Public Library’s Carnegie Building. Suggested donation is $4, but all donations are appreciated. Call the PFT Movie Hotline at 231-758-3108 for current movie info.

Coming Attractions:
The following tentative schedule is subject to change: call the PFT Movie Hotline for the latest info:
Wed. & Fri. 4/25 & 27: “The Queen”
Wed. 4/29: May is Mental Health Awareness Month Film: “Out of the Shadow” documentary (about a daughter/filmmaker and her mother who has schizophrenia) and a follow-up facilitated discussion with some local mental health professionals.
Wed. & Fri. 5/2 & 5: “Dreamgirls”

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