True Stories (in 35mm)

March 30 at 2pm

1 hour 29 minutes


Maine Film Center

Maine Film Center, 93 Main Street, Waterville, Maine


Maine Film Center is proud to present David Byrne’s True Stories in an original 35mm print. Byrne will attend in-person for a Q&A after the film, which the Los Angeles Times called, “a movie of effortless cool, the perfect entry for a late-‘80s time capsule."

As the small–but growing–town of Virgil gears up to celebrate its 150th anniversary, an unnamed visitor arrives in a red Chrysler convertible. Sporting a sharp suit and toting a massive black Stetson cowboy hat, The Narrator (David Byrne) introduces us to the ordinary town and the all-but-ordinary people who live there. As he passes through Virgil, The Narrator interacts with plenty of odd and unusual folk; notable characters include Miss Rollings, a woman so rich she can afford never to leave her bed, the Culvers, a couple who haven’t spoken to each other in years except through their children, Louis (John Goodman), a man so desperate for love he has an electric sign that reads “Wife Wanted” pointing at his house, and The Lying Woman, who…well, her outlandish tales speak for themselves. Bonus points if you spot all 50 sets of twins in the film!

With karaoke-style lip syncing events, a fashion show heavily inspired by inanimate objects, conspiracy-laden church sermons, and much, much more, True Stories is a surreal and satirical look at the grand characters that can and do exist in the most normal of places. Byrne’s Narrator takes us to all corners of the fictional Virgil, Texas, and explores what makes this tiny town tick in the build-up to its sesquicentennial celebration.

“This movie does what some painters try to do: It recasts ordinary images into strange new shapes. There is hardly a moment in True Stories that doesn't seem everyday to anyone who has grown up in Middle America, and not a moment that doesn't seem haunted with secrets, evasions, loneliness, depravity or hidden joy–sometimes all at once.”–Roger Ebert. However, as noted by one couple in the film, “If this is being nuts, then I don’t ever want to be sane!”

After the screening, please join us as we welcome David Byrne for a Q&A session.

All proceeds benefit the Youth Arts Access Fund. Ticket purchases for this event are non-refundable. We appreciate you contacting the Ed Harris Box Office to release your seat if you are unable to make it to the show.

This film is eligible for the Youth Arts Access Fund. Call the Box Office at 207.873.7000 to obtain YAAF tickets. Pay it forward! Donate to YAAF here.

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