Things to Do This Weekend: A War Film on a Flight Deck and a New Old Theater

Things to Do This Weekend: A War Film on a Flight Deck and a New Old Theater


There’s lots to do this week, but before you jump in, make sure to enter our giveaway here. One Summer subscriber will win a free weekend of glamping for two on Governors Island. The two-night stay, on Aug. 17 and 18, includes a gift certificate for a chef’s tasting dinner.

You’ll see our Governors Island recommendations on the Google Map, alongside information about our plans this week. Take a look and share this newsletter with friends — if they win the giveaway, maybe they’ll bring you along!

Just our (hundredth) way of saying happy summer.

— Margot and Tejal

Watch a War Film on a Flight Deck

Margot, What’s the Plan?

When “Dunkirk” was released last year, critics praised the movie for its very real depictions of the miraculous English retreat during World War II. With scenes of British fighter pilots dodging enemy fire, troops scrambling to escape sinking ships and civilians sailing leisure boats for the desperate Channel rescues, it’s a war movie distilled to its basics, just the inflection points of battle, raw and visceral.

This film deserves to be watched (or rewatched) on a big screen, and boy, do we have one for you. On Friday, catch a free showing of “Dunkirk” on the flight deck of the U.S.S. Intrepid, New York’s very own aircraft carrier turned museum.

As I learned on a recent visit, the imposing ship, now docked above Pier 84 at 46th Street, endured five kamikaze attacks and a torpedo strike during World War II. It would go on to see combat in Vietnam, and then be used for military exercises during the Cold War and recovery efforts for NASA.

Converted to a museum in 1982, the Intrepid displays a multitude of naval and military weapons, machinery and other artifacts. The fighter planes on its deck, many decorated with tiger stripes, shark teeth and multicolored stars, are amazing.

I’d recommend arriving early on Friday to stake out your spot because the movie tickets will be released on a first-come, first-served basis. The stunning river view will get you through to the film’s start at sunset, around 8:30.

Beats IMAX, if you ask me.

The deck should have plenty of room for all, but museum members may reserve tickets in advance. Food, chairs and blankets are welcome, but alcohol is not. Rain cancellations will be announced by 3:30 on the day of the screening, on the museum’s website and social media.

Can’t make it Friday? Experience the museum in its entirety, including a tour through a guided missile submarine, during its regular hours. City residents can reserve discounted tickets for $19, and NYC library card holders can reserve a free pass through the Culture Pass program.

Food Ideas From Tejal

For treats to take with you, visit Underwest Donuts inside the Westside Highway Car Wash, where you can see the cars getting soapy and roller-scrubbed through the glass while you wait in line. (Of the selection of tender cake doughnuts, the brown butter is particularly good, as is the banana milk.)

But for dinner (and drinks!), your best bet this far west is Gotham West Market, a covered food hall with several restaurants and plenty of options for a big group with varied tastes. Look out for …

Jianbing Companys delicious rendition of the Chinese street snack, composed of a paper-thin pancake and omelet seasoned with herbs, chile and sweet bean paste.

Corner Slice’s marvelous squares of thick, bubbly pan pizzas, often decorated with seasonal toppings like squash, fresh tomatoes and corn.

Choza’s vegetarian tacos made with mushrooms, chickpeas and a deeply flavored salsa negra. And yes, they have Mexican coke.

El Colmado’s sliced jamón ibérico and marinated tuna dripping with olive oil, along with a tight list of wines and sherries by the glass.

Seamore’s affordable raw seafood platter that’s ideal for two people, and its perfect classic mai tai.

Drink Ideas From Tejal

If you’d like to stay in the air conditioning, you can find beer, wine and cocktails inside the market.

But if you’re in the mood to wander a little, perhaps after the movie, try The Press Lounge on the 16th floor of the Kimpton Ink48 hotel. The large space has stunning views of the city (but note that the bar can occasionally be puritanical about the dress code — no flip-flops, that sort of thing).

Nearby

• As you approach the ship, you might catch some carriage horses looking out of place. They’re on their way home from Central Park to the Clinton Park Stables on 52nd Street. While the space isn’t open to the public, the outdoor action is just delightful.

• Or watch some people instead. Dewitt Clinton Park, across from the stables, will be full of baseball and basketball games in the after-work hours. Follow along or grab a court of your own (just bring a ball).

• If you grab food at the Gotham West Market, spend a minute in NYC Velo, a bike shop that’s grouped in with all the eats. You’re going to want your own bike for an event coming up in a couple of weeks. (Send us your guesses!)

Tour a Jazz Age Theater in Flatbush

Margot, What’s the Plan?

At the corner of Flatbush and Tilden Avenues, where gravelly reggae voices will serenade you through car stereos, look up to see a jutting marquee, announcing an all-star lineup, of Brooklyn’s largest theater.

“The World Class Kings Theatre Welcomes You,” a sign underneath affirms.

Or, rather, welcomes you back. Kings Theatre opened in 1929, closed in 1977 and is now back in action.

During its construction in the Roaring Twenties, no detail was overlooked. The sweeping, 3,600-seat movie palace, one of New York’s five “Wonder Theaters” built by the Loews Corporation, was ornamented with rich velvet curtains, a gleaming marble lobby floor and intricate craftsmanship of fleurs-de-lis and angels. Smoking rooms for both men and women contributed to the elegant setting, and a Robert Morgan pipe organ helped create the experience of watching brand-new “talkies.”

But the Great Depression in the 1930s, the breakup of the studio system in the 40s, TV’s proliferation in the 50s and Brooklyn’s middle-class suburban exodus in the 60s all contributed to financial strain. The movie palace closed in 1977.

Lying fallow for decades, the building was looted, flooded, rotted and squatted. But in the aughts, a public-private partnership agreed to a massive restoration of the theater with the hope of aiding the area’s economic development.

The work cost $95 million, and in 2015 the Kings reopened as a state-of-the-art venue that retains many of its original details.

You could take a look yourself, on a tour this Saturday at 2 p.m. (perfect for a rainy afternoon), or book tickets for some of the upcoming shows: the funk band Vulfpeck, ex-Talking-Head David Byrne and the vocalist Heather Headley.

Tickets here, white gloves optional.

If you don’t catch the tour this weekend, there are others on Aug. 11 and 25, and a happy hour tour on Sept. 13 that includes a glass of wine. Can’t make it at all? Check out Margot’s Facebook visit.

Food Ideas From Tejal

Walk north along Flatbush Avenue to Peppa’s. The jerk chicken, rinsed in vinegar, generously spiced and cooked over the open flames of the grill, is a fast and delicious mess of a meal. (Note: If you don’t ask for it well done, you may get it a little pink at the bone.)

A walk southwest of the theater leads you to Purple Yam, which makes crisp lumpia — spring rolls filled with pork and jicama — as well as a gorgeously textured sisig with pig cheeks, ears and snout, but also deviates from traditional Filipino fare.

For a wonderfully reliable and tidy menu of salads and burgers, whole fish and roast chicken, there’s always The Farm on Adderley. Pay special attention to the summery clams and soft-shell crabs.

Drink Ideas From Tejal

A block from the theater, the neighborhood bar Michelle’s Cocktail Lounge serves basic beers, cocktails and Panamanian drinking snacks like crisp, golden pieces of fried yuca.

For a deep, international whiskey selection, it’s about a 15-minute walk from the theater to Sycamore Bar and Flower Shop, open until 4 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Bar Chord keeps similar hours with good vibes and live music — this Saturday, look out for the Afro-Cuban Salsa band La Madrugada — in a laid-back atmosphere.

Nearby

• The Flatbush Caton Market, temporarily on Clarendon, is a Caribbean market of more than 40 vendors selling imported foodstuffs like dried beans and spices, plus dresses, hats, haircuts and more. Head to the back for fresh sugar cane and coconut water.

• Follow Cortelyou to Sacred Vibes Apothecary on Argyle, a community herbalism store. Explore their collection of tonics, teas and resins, and don’t hold back on the questions.

• Learn all about moss, and discover how terrarium building can be a meditative art, during a workshop at Twig, a plant store on Coney Island Avenue.

• Now, time for some house-peeping. Meander between Newkirk, Church, Coney Island and Ocean Avenues (and beyond!) to survey Ditmas Park’s fantastic Victorian houses. Yes, you are still in Brooklyn.

Required Reading

• Watch this half-hour documentary from Blueprint NYC on New York’s Wonder Theaters. Then binge other episodes on the more remarkable city sites, like the High Line and St. John the Divine cathedral.

• While the Kings brings the theater back to life, old Hollywood is long gone. Get your dose on “You Must Remember This,” a podcast on the “secret and/or forgotten histories of Hollywood’s first century.”

• Feeling like you’ve missed out on the Ditmas real estate market? Read this Times article on the neighborhood from 1998. You’d have been too late then, too.

Tip Line

Extra, Extra

• The sixth annual New York Women’s Surf Film Festival starts Friday night at Rockaway Beach. Come for free screenings and talks with directors and surfers, plus a Sunday beach cleanup and group surf.

• Harlem Week, which is actually a month, kicks off on Sunday with a gospel choir, fashion show, vendors and more. There are family-friendly events, and you can see the full schedule here.

• Femi Kuti, Fela’s oldest son, plays Central Park this Sunday with his band the Positive Force. Get ready for some Afrobeats! The Congolese band Jupiter & Okwess opens. An afternoon show, it is also free.

• The weekly Sweat Sessions continue in the Meatpacking District this Tuesday, with free outdoor workouts hosted by local studios from 6 to 8:45 p.m. Book your spot here.

From You

“I think it would be really great to do a newsletter all around what to do when it rains in NYC. I’m one of your classic interns here for the summer and all my weekend plans were utterly upended by the rain.” — Jordana





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