[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
- Laura - 1944- Dana Andrews is a police detective investigating a murder of a girl so seemingly perfect he is frustratingly falling in love with her ghost.
- The Body Snatcher - 1945 - Boris Karloff and Henry Daniell in a first-class pairing onscreen in Val Lewton's best of his three films with Karloff. Grave-robbing in Scotland becomes a test of willpower between a compromised doctor (Daniell) and the cabman (Karloff) who ferries bodies (living and dead) for him.
- Hitchcock 2012 - Story of the making of Psycho, and how Alfred and Alma Hitchcock worked together.
- Shepherd of the Hills - John Wayne, Harry Carey and Betty Fields in the Ozarks
- Son of Paleface 1952 - Bob Hope and Jane Russell team up in this sequel to bring a small about of law and order to the west. Includes Roy Rogers and Trigger "The Smartest Horse in the World"
- Cat People - 1942 - Simone Simon in Val Lewton's first horror film for RKO - - what hints at being a sideways imitation of Universal's The Wolf Man but turns into a psychological study of marital alienation and self-deception, along with Lewton's frequent theme of superstition clashing with rational explanations that don't always quite fit.
- Wife vs Secretary - 1936 - Cark Gable has a problem: Myrna Loy and Jean Harlow are deciding on which woman will get to claim his heart in this corporate melodrama.
- Confession - 1937 - One of Kay Francis' best films and a well-made version of the German film Mazurka.
- Holiday Inn - 1942 - Bing Crosby turns his farm into a show business showcase, and Fred Astaire shows up. Incidentaly, he's also interested in Bing's girlfriend, Marjorie Reynolds. Film features the song "White Christmas", among many others.
- Gone with the Wind - 1939 - The biggest money-maker and one of the most famous films ever made.
- Dr. Strangelove - 1964 - The world is on the verge of a nuclear disaster between the United States and the Soviet Union - Director Kubrick makes this seem quite funny in this Cold War satire.
- Blade Runner - 1982 - Ridley Scott's influential film about 'replicants' who wish to live on earth and find a way to extend their limited lifetimes. Harrison Ford is sent to stop them.
- The Vampires Coffin - 1958 - Well made Mexican horror film with excellent photography amid a very familiar plotline. However, good performances and humor help make this version stand out.
- Daybreak - 1931 - Helen Chandler and Ramon Novarro in a melodrama about a piano teacher and an Austrian Imperial Officer who are trapped into (sometimes brutal) societal expectations for their lives.
- Stolen Holiday 1937 - Claude Rains and Kay Francis are almost lovers, but not quite; but she is extremely loyal as his financial empire begins to fall apart.
- Guilty Hands - 1931 - Lionel Barrymore and Kay Francis are working out who has killed a wealthy philanderer.
- The Vagabond Lover - 1929 - Rudy Vallee and Marie Dressler in a song-soaked and humorous telling of an amateur jazz band that is pretending to be a group of famous pros.
- The Lady Vanishes - 1938 - Hitchcock's famous film about a disappearing lady aboard a trans-continental train. Except for one stubborn young female passenger [who is consequently accused of mental instability] no one aboard can remember the vanished elderly Miss Froy.
- White Zombie - 1932 - Bela Lugosi likes making zombies, and this comes in handy when a local plantation owner on Haiti decides if he can't woo a certain girl to be his wife, he'll have Lugosi turn her into a mindless slave that he can command.