Through the Looking Glass at OCP HQ

To those who helped made last night's RoboCop-at-OCP HQ event happen -- Downtown Dallas, Inc.; Brent Brown and his staff at the CityDesign Studio; the Dallas Film Society; and, of course, the promotions staff at the Observer -- a mighty "much obliged" this morning. Couldn't have done it without you. But the biggest thank-you is reserved for those who attended -- not just Mayor Mike Rawlings, who stopped by pre-screening to meet-n-greet The People; or council members Angela Hunt and Linda Koop, who succeeded in finally getting the lights cut off at Dallas City Hall, but the few hundred who came early, stayed late and brought life to would have been an otherwise moribund space on a sweltering Friday night.

To see Paul Verhoeven's 25-year-old film flickering in the exact spot where it was shot, its shotguns-and-swearwords soundtrack augmented by the occasional sirens-blaring police car or fire engine racing through downtown, was a profoundly cool experience. But at some point last night, the audience became The Experience -- all the gleeful whoops and hollers and turn-around skyline glances directed at the landmarks that flashed across the screen.

They came by car and on bikes and light rail from all over the city; I saw friends from North Dallas and familiar faces from Oak Cliff and East Dallas and met strangers from as far away as some place called Richardson. There were the OCP-logo-tattooed hardcores, as you'll see in our slide show, and casual fans of the film and those who'd never seen RoboCop. The off-duty officers said afterward they'd never seen a crowd so all at once into-it and pleasant ... and tidy too.

(Despite there having been three busy-all-night food trucks -- Nammi, Gandolfo's New York Deli and Enticed -- there was not a single piece of trash left over once the end credits began rolling. Impressive and, dare I say it, touching.)

So, again, thank you, thank you, thank you for coming out. And if you missed it, we'll do this again sooner than later. I'm heading down to Hillsboro one week from tonight for that Bottle Rocket screening. But next up, 1962's State Fair at Fair Park. Because it'll be neat to see this in the Bandshell. And thanks to Justin for stopping by and getting these photos. Nice shooting, son.

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