The Dark Crystal (12/23, 8:30pm)

Muppet creator Jim Henson’s ambitious bid for status as both a serious filmmaker and a pioneer in fantasy storytelling was forever cemented on December 17th, 1982, with the release of The Dark Crystal — and ever since, those who have seen it have never forgotten its completely fresh, revolutionary new world created entirely through puppets and creative art design. In an undefined land and time, a repulsive, dragon-like race called the Skeksis have stolen a large, damaged purple crystal which provides them power and knowledge, and it’s up to Jen, a young elfen creature whose race is destined to heal the crystal, to accept his quest. Emerging from the greatest era the world of cinema fantastique has yet given us (Blade Runner, Conan the Barbarian, Time Bandits, Excalibur, Videodrome, The Secret of NIMH et al.), The Dark Crystal’s entrancingly-realized universe, courtesy of renowned conceptual artist Brian Froud, bursts at the seams with impossibly rich detail, remaining an absolute high point in the Henson universe. Oh, yes — and did we forget to mention that it’s one of the most double-über-awesome movies we’ve ever shown?
Dirs. Jim Henson & Frank Oz, 1982, 35mm, 93 min.

Watch the trailer for “The Dark Crystal”! NOTE: this trailer was originally for our Dec. 17th screening. The date of this screening is December 23rd.