top of page

Nitehawk Cinema Launches "Be Gay, Do Crime" Programming Series

As a lifelong New Yorker, one of the best things about this city is the selection of movie theaters we have at our disposal. With a theater seemingly for everyone, we have been blessed with a plethora of large multiplexes, 20-seat arthouse screens, and even a beautiful movie palace or two. But make no mistake, there is perhaps no better theater in New York City that understands why going to the movies can be so fun more than Nitehawk Cinemas. Their signature programming is consistently unmatched, and this month is further proof with their latest series, “Be Gay, Do Crime”. Co-curated by Nitehawk Cinema Film Programmer Desmond Thorne and writer/festival programmer Shayna Maci Warner, the series “focuses on Queer people who commit crimes as an act of resistance (and sometimes just for the fun of it!).” Inspired by Maci Warner’s Letterboxd list and essay “Pride is a Riot”, Nitehawk Cinemas will be celebrating Pride Month in the most fun way imaginable: with movies and pre or post-show events that will stand as proof that the theatrical experience cannot be beat.

As a new programmer at Nitehawk, Thorne wanted up to make sure the LGBTQ+ programming at Nitehawk Cinemas was elevated, while also ensuring it “really felt like it was for us, rather than a means to educate Heterosexual people about our experience”. Once he came across Maci Warner’s essay, it served as the basis and inspiration for the film series. Some films off the list include Bound (1996), the debut film from the Wachowski sisters, the F. Gary Gray crime film Set It Off (1996), and even D.E.B.S. (2004), which Maci Warner describes as “the perfect fluffy brunch movie worthy of a Fast and the Furious-length series.” Some others from Thorne include A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge (1985), My Own Private Idaho (1991), and an anniversary screening of John Waters’ Desperate Living (1977).

With a litany of companion events such as a live BDSM performance from Daemonum X and Sara Elise before Bloodsisters (1995) or a brunch special created by a local Park Slope establishment of the same name as its film counterpart, Dog Day Afternoon (1975), “Be Gay, Do Crime” will certainly be a film series to remember. And the fun certainly doesn’t stop with this series. Desert Hearts (1985) and The Bling Ring (2013) are some of the other Queer-centric films playing at Nitehawk Prospect Park in June, with both being preceded by live events. With many of these screening on 35mm, Thorne was barely able to choose what he was most excited to see. However, he was “thrilled to be building events around many of the screenings” and stated, “It’s going to be so wonderful to celebrate our community with our community through films that show us in such a badass light. It just continues to prove that we are people who fight back and stand up for ourselves while having a thrilling time and looking fabulous while doing so.”

For full screening and scheduling info of the series, head to Nitehawk Williamsburg or Nitehawk Propsect Park!

bottom of page