Movie News & Reviews

Film-screening series 'Take Two Live' launches at Palm Theatre

Jim Dee, left, and Bob Whiteford have started "Take Two Live," a screening series aimed at film aficionados of all stripes.
Jim Dee, left, and Bob Whiteford have started "Take Two Live," a screening series aimed at film aficionados of all stripes.

For a decade, film fanatics Jim Dee and Bob Whiteford entertained radio listeners in San Luis Obispo County as the hosts of KCBX's "Take Two: The Movie Show," an hourlong celebration of all things cinematic.

Now Dee, the owner of the Palm Theatre, and Whiteford, the former owner of Insomniac Video, are bringing their expertise to a new screening series, “Take Two Live.”

The next movie in the series, "The Burmese Harp," will be shown midday Sunday — the same day as the Academy Awards.

According to Dee, he and his co-host created a total of 300 episodes of “Take Two” before other obligations forced them to cancel the show in April 2012.

“It was a labor of love but a lot of work,” Dee added, noting that it took three to five hours to produce a single hourlong episode.

By the end of the decade, “I was pretty stressed. I felt like I wasn’t bringing 100 percent to the table anymore,” added Whiteford, who works as an assessment proctor at Cuesta College when he’s not helping out at the Palm.

Still, “Take Two” enjoyed a large, loyal fan base — as many as 15,000 listeners a month, once the show became a National Public Radio-sponsored podcast. Dee and Whiteford received emails from as far away as Australia, Ireland, Finland and Mexico.

The show also presented them with opportunities that any movie lover would envy, such as interviewing “A Clockwork Orange” star Malcolm McDowell at the 2009 San Luis Obispo International Film Festival.

Dee and Whiteford hope to reconnect with fans with “Take Two Live,” which pairs each movie with a brief introduction and a question-and-answer session.

The duo launched the series on Jan. 27 with a screening of director William Wellman’s “Heroes for Sale,” about a World War I veteran’s descent into depression, drug addiction and unemployment.

The screening drew 40 people, delighting Dee. “I was hoping for 30,” he said.

Next up is director Kon Ichikawa’s “The Burmese Harp,” a mystic, musical exploration of war, pacifism and atonement centered on a Japanese soldier in Burma at the end of World War II.

“This is a pretty profound movie,” Dee said.

John Dahl’s “Red Rock West,” a darkly funny film noir starring Nicolas Cage as a luckless drifter and Dennis Hopper as a hit man, will screen March 31.

Screening April 28 is Vittorio de Sica’s “Bicycle Thieves,” which follows a man and his son as they search for a stolen bicycle in post-World War II Rome.

Although Dee isn’t sure what they’ll show later this year, he said, “The selection of movies is endless.”

‘Take Two Live’

Jim Dee and Bob Whiteford will lead a screening of “The Burmese Harp” followed by a Q&A session beginning at 12:30 p.m. Sunday at the Palm Theatre, 817 Palm St., San Luis Obispo. Tickets are $10. For information, call 541-5161 or visit