7 Reasons to Watch “Donnie Darko” at the Hipp


Does Frank, your imaginary friend who happens to be a giant bunny, ever wake you up in the middle of the night to tell you that the world is ending? Yeah, me neither. He does, however, wake up Donnie Darko!

After surviving a freak jet-engine crash in his bedroom, Donnie seeks answers by investigating time travel in an effort to prevent the end of the world. The cult classic “Donnie Darko” stars Jake Gyllenhaal and poses some serious food for thought regarding fate versus free will and our very purpose on Earth. Here are seven reasons to watch “Donnie Darko” at the Hippodrome this weekend. Get your tickets by calling the box office at (352)375-4477.

1. Jake Gyllenhaal is the star. I repeat. Jake Gyllenhaal is the star.

Teenage Jake Gyllenhaal was a promising rookie when “Donnie Darko” hit the big screen in 2001. Gyllenhaal gained major street cred when he played Donnie, a troubled young man seeking answers to questions about life and death. Besides killing it acting wise, can we just talk about how Jakey (I’m allowed to call him that) plays the most adorable oddball ever?   

2. It will make you think ~deep thoughts ~

 If you think you question all of life’s intricacies now, I guarantee that after watching “Donnie Darko”, you will probably be the deepest person you know. Is time travel real? Do we live in parallel universes? Can we change our fate? ARE WE ALL DOOMED? You know, everyday thoughts.  

3. Jake Gyllenhaal and Maggie Gyllenhaal are actual siblings in Real Life.

Siblings playing siblings? What a concept. Maggie and Jake’s chemistry on screen is extremely realistic (DUH), which makes the scenes they’re in together that much more fun to watch. Imagine sitting in on one of their family dinners… now you can!


Seth Rogen is a bully, Ashley Tisdale is a geek, and Patrick Swayze is a motivational speaker. Need I say more?


5. It embraces the weird.

I mean, aren’t we all a little weird? “Donnie Darko” embraces the weird we all have inside of us. Despite Donnie being the most outwardly odd character, it is obvious that the film strives to have every character’s quirks on display. Don’t forget to bring your weirdo A-game to the screening because you’re competing with a kid having visions of a guy in a bunny suit telling him that the world is going to end and an old woman walking back and forth to her mailbox every five seconds.


6. Drew Barrymore is the English teacher you wish you had in high school

Considering I’d be hella intimidated by her intellectual post-graduate school persona, she’d still be #goals if she were my literature teacher in high school. What’s great about Karen Pomeroy, Drew’s character, is that she has a sort of spiritual connection with Donnie and just really seems to ~get~ him throughout the movie. She also wears adorable outfits and is sassy AF.  


7. You’ll love its dark humor.


You know those little comments that make you HAHA on the inside? This flick’s loaded with them.  “Donnie Darko” mocks ordinary suburban life, mainly through Kitty Farmer, who may or may not be living vicariously through her daughter’s dance group. It’s campy yet intelligent humor will totally have you smirking.


Karaoke comes back to the Hipp

Gainesville residents will be belting out their favorite tunes in the Hippodrome Theatre on May 12 from 7 p.m.  to 11 p.m.
After a brief hiatus, the Hipp is bringing karaoke back to their basement. The event is free and open to the public, and the basement bar will be open for patrons who need a little liquid courage before their performances.
The Hippodrome’s decision to bring karaoke back is based on the theatre’s commitment to providing community events that bring people together, said public programs director Jessica Sandino. Events like this one bring new people to the theatre, allowing them to discover the magic of this downtown destination.
“We love hosting these kinds of events, and they’re always well received,” Sandino said. “We want to show our patrons that we’re not just a theatre with live performances or a cinema with films — we’re the place you want to be downtown, at all times.”

Hippodrome celebrates autism in the arts

The community is invited to come experience the world through the eyes of someone with autism Monday at the Hippodrome Theatre.

The Hippodrome Theatre is partnering with the UF Center for Autism and Related Disabilities and West Port High School in Ocala for “Envision the Invisible: Celebrating Autism in the Arts.” The event allows attendees to discover the beauty and importance of the arts through the lens of those with autism. It is free and open to the public.
From 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., guests are invited to browse the Hippodrome’s art gallery and attend a live performance in the cinema, where actors with autism will share their experiences through the short play, “The Invisible.” Afterward, attendees can join the evening’s featured artists for a reception in the basement.
UF CARD assistant director Danielle Liso said the event celebrates neurodiversity in the arts community. 
“We are so proud to honor the amazing talents of individuals with autism,” she said, “and we are thrilled to have the support of the Hippodrome to share these talents with the public.” 
Jess Sandino, the Hipp’s public programs director, said the theatre is honored to partner with UF CARD and West Port High School. 
“This event brings the Hippodrome’s mission of inclusion and diversity to life,” she said. “Art brings people together and helps them understand differences. The partnership with UF CARD and West Port High School allows us to connect with our community in a new way, and we are so excited to share truly outstanding artwork.”

6 p.m. to 7 p.m.: first run of performances in the cinema
7 p.m. to 8 p.m.: second run of performances in the cinema
8 p.m. to 9 p.m.: speakers’ panel in the cinema
9 p.m. to 10 p.m.: reception in the basement

*Art gallery will be open during both performances, and the Hipp encourages guests to spend part of their time perusing visual art, and the other part watching the live performances.

Five Reasons You Should See “Becky’s New Car”

By Kelsey Peña

“When a woman says she needs new shoes, what she really wants is a new job. When she says she needs a new house, she wants a new husband. And when she says she wants a new car, she wants a new life.”

Meet Becky Foster, a 40-something-year-old woman who may or may not be in need of new shoes, a new house and a new car. Think your love life is bad? At least you’re not secretly dating a widowed man who thinks your (very much alive) husband is also dead. From Feb. 24 to March 19, hop in the passenger’s seat as Becky drives head on into a whirlwind affair that will change the lives of everyone around her. This play is the perfect blend of hilarious and heartfelt. Here are five reasons why you need to see “Becky’s New Car”:

It’s hella quotable.

Get out your apron and notepad because after seeing this show you’re going to be serving your friends some serious #quotes. Take this one for example:

“Life is chaos and holidays. Who can say why things turn out the way they do. All I know is that my life has become a handful of people I met by chance and the things we did together.”

Damn. Pull that one out at a dinner party and you’ll be the smartest (sounding) kid on the block.

See UF School of Theatre and Dance’s very own Chelsi Stancil.

You know how you always see those interviews on, like, Ellen or Oprah where they interview that guy who did soccer with Ryan Seacrest in the fall of fourth grade. Well, if you come see “Becky,” that could be you! I mean, we all know Chelsi is going to be accepting an Emmy, or an Oscar, or a Tony one day, so you could be the lucky guy or gal to say you saw her before she got Viola Davis famous.

It will keep you on the edge of your seat.

If you want a plot twist as epic as the 2017 Oscars best picture switch up, look no further than “Becky’s New Car.”  No spoilers, but I’m talking next level M. Night Shyamalan. Trust me, you’re about to be more shocked than the cast of “La La Land.” Sorry, too soon.

It’s Interactive!

Get out your oversized Gucci sunglasses and finest Hermès scarf (or, you know, the $2 shades they hand out at the Reitz and that weird bandanna you picked up in Turlington) because after you see this show you’ll probably have to hide from all of your adoring fans. OK, maybe not, but you might just get the chance to take part in the performance. With numerous fourth-wall breaks, you could be the lucky audience member to give Becky life advice or get her ready for a date.

It’s laugh-out-loud funny.

You’ve all heard of “dad jokes.” Now get ready for “mom jokes.” When her 26-year-old, lives-at-home son doesn’t do the one thing she asked of him – load the dishwasher – after he spent the night drinking, she quips, “There you have it … my son was loaded and the dishwasher was not.”

Ahhh, classic Mom.  (But seriously, the cast rolls out punch lines throughout the entire course of the play, and it’s a real treat.)

So there you go! The perfect dramedy for date night, girls’ night or whatever the occasion, you won’t want to miss “Becky’s New Car” today!


10 Reasons You Should Watch “When Harry Met Sally” (at the Hipp!)

By Kelsey Peña

1989 was a the year for life-changing pop culture: Taylor Swift was born. Madonna’s “Like a Prayer” was topping the charts. And, most importantly to us, rom-com fans across the globe were blessed with one of the most classic will-they/won’t-they love stories of all time, “When Harry Met Sally.” With a star-studded cast, including Meg Ryan, Billy Crystal and Carrie Fisher, the film follows the lives of two friends living in New York City and their relationship throughout the years. This classic raises the question, “Can men and women ever be ‘just friends’?”

“When Harry Met Sally” is just as celebrated today as it was nearly 30 years ago. Here’s why you need to watch it:

1. The iconic 80s fashion.

Look at the glasses. Look at the shoulder pads. Amazing.

2. Meg Ryan is actual hair goals.

Sure, the amount of hairspray used for this movie probably created a permanent hole in the ozone layer. But still, we can all appreciate the insane volume going on here.

3. A strong female lead.

Sally has great style and gorgeous hair, but she’s also a BOSS. Right after graduating from the University of Chicago, she road tripped to New York City, followed her dreams and eventually became a successful journalist.

4. It’s the perfect movie to watch with your friends.

For those nights when you just want to get your besties together, eat pizza and watch a rom-com, this movie is your go-to. It’s just the right combination of funny, sweet and even a little bit tear-jerking (if you, like me, cry at literally everything).

5. Carrie Fisher. Need I say more?

While this inspiring and talented leading lady is perhaps best remembered for her role as Princess Leia in the Star Wars franchise, she also made an appearance in “When Harry Met Sally” as Sally’s best friend and ½ of the relationship goals that are Marie and Jess.

6. You’ll finally understand all of those movie references.

I’ll have what she’s having, if ya know what I mean.

7. Young Billy Crystal

I’m not even gonna lie, young Billy Crystal can kinda get it. I’ll admit, it’s a little weird that he voiced the one-eyed monster from your childhood. (Yes, I’m talking about Mike Wazowski.) But look at that smile. And the scruff. You can’t help but admit that he used to be a little bit of a cutie.

8. It will restore your faith in love.

Every now and then, the movie will cut to an interview of an old couple that has been together for, like, 60 years. And then they talk about how they met and how much they love one another. And the old man will say something about how beautiful his wife was when they met. And how she’s just as beautiful now. And then you cry. You just cry.

9. It celebrates friendship.

OK, yes, Harry spends 90 percent of the movie trying to convince Sally that men and women can’t be friends, but he does that while simultaneously being one of the best friends a girl could ask for.  From furniture shopping, to setting Sally up on a blind date, to being her shoulder to cry on when things go awry, Harry has always got her back.

10. It’s playing at your favorite downtown hangout!

That’s right, on Feb. 8 at 8 p.m. you can satisfy all your sappy rom-com cravings right in the Hippodrome Cinema. The beloved film will be playing for one night only, so be sure to book your tickets here!