[Above] The Art Deco Mount Pony Theater operated by the Library of Congress
Mount Pony Culpeper Virginia Movie Theater
With archive materials housed in five separate location,the audio-visual department of the Library of Congress has now unified their collection in Culpeper, Virginia, approximately 70 miles to the west of Washington DC. Inheriting a radiation hardened facility at Mount Pony from its former owners the Federal Reserve Board, the location has been redesigned and rebuilt with a state of the art Art-Deco 200-seat movie theater.
Originally built in 1969 to act as an emergency headquarters and a high-security currency warehouse, the facility features a 400 foot long steel reinforced bunker with 30-centimeter thicks walls and lead-lined shutters for its windows. In 1997 the United States Congress approved the transfer to the Library of Congress, and funded by a private foundation, has set up the Packard Campus of the National Audio-Visual Conservation Center, featuring 90 miles of shelving for the extensive collection of film elements, video tape, photographs, recordings and odds-and-ends chronicling the film and recording arts in America.
The collection is home to more than 1.1 million film, television, and video items, and 3.5 million audio recordings. Motion pictures date from the 1890s, and audio recordings date back 110 years.
The Library of Congress runs two movie theatres:
The Mount Pony Movie Theater near Culpeper, Virginia (schedule online)
[Not currently active] The Mary Pickford Theatre on the 3rd floor of the Madison Building in Washington DC (schedule online)
Library of Congress Online A/V Conservation Home Page
Theatres and Movie Resources
Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines - 1965 - International Air Race comedy with beautiful photography and classic antique aeroplanes from the very beginning of the air age.
Sadie McKee 1934 - Joan Crawford battles the great depression, a husband's alcoholism, Franchot Tone, and her lower class start in life (she's a maid at a mansion, but ends up in a dance hall), and beats them all.
Zombies of Mora Tau 1957 - Allison Hayes, Autumn Russell and Gregg Palmer face off against a B-Movie sailor-zombie problem while trying to fetch a cache of diamonds from the ocean depths along the African coast.
Dark of the Sun 1968 - Mercenaries are hired to go into the Congo civil war to rescue civilians and to also bring back a $25 million dollar cache of diamonds. Rod Taylor leads the mercenaries (James Brown, Peter Carsten and others) on a three day mission that soon includes Yvette Mimieux before everything begins to careen out of control.
3 Days of the Condor, 1975 - Robert Redford as CIA analyst Joe Turner, trapped between warring factions within the CIA itself. Confused by why everyone is shooting at him, he goes on the run with kidnapped Faye Dunnaway in tow. Sydney Pollack's direction is tense and has clear storytelling. Max von Sydow is on hand as an amused veteran hitman who learns Joe Turner a thing or two. A great big slice of 1970s paranoia powers the film and lays down the template for many films that have followed afterward.