Why Milwaukeeans Love Times Cinema’s Friday Night Freak Show

It’s freaky Friday once a month at the Times Cinema.

The freak flags fly every third Friday of the month at The Times Cinema in Washington Heights (5906 W. Vliet St.). The Friday Night Freak Show pairs a DJ from WMSE with a film screening, drawing devout cinephiles as well as live music lovers since 1996. “Friday Night Freak Show takes on a concert appeal,” says Tom Crawford, WMSE’s station manager. “Who doesn’t want to sit in a theater with 300 others who feel like you do about this movie?” 

The picks tap into cult classics, indie horror and music-centric films you can’t catch at a traditional movie theater. Some past faves include Rock ’n’ Roll High School (1979), This Is Spinal Tap (1984) and Shakes The Clown (1993). This month’s event will be on Nov. 18.



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“[It’s] their favorites once again on the big screen,” Crawford says about why regulars love this event. “Think about it for a moment: Some of the films once panned are now legendary, and the only opportunity to enjoy that movie is to stream it.” 

The event presents itself as a bit of a club night. Guests are greeted with a full bar before entering the theater hall. The first hour is all music, with the DJ spinning records that pay homage to the night’s flick. Then the lights go dark, the screen lights up and the movie begins.

Tickets and more details are available at timescinema.com.


This story is part of Milwaukee Magazine’s November issue.

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