Have you been going to Splice Microcinema, the mysterious (but unpretentious) and free (though donations are encouraged) underground screening series in the backroom at Vino’s? I really hope that you have, particularly if you’re a Little Rock film fan, which, let’s face it, has always been a pretty unfortunate position to be in. It’s also true, though, that things are looking up in the Rock lately, at least cinematically, from the Ron Robinson Theater’s unveiling to the flourishing and increasingly well-respected (and forthcoming) Little Rock Film Festival. And the folks at Splice — writers and academics and filmmakers and enthusiasts — are contributing to this upswing in a major way.
Last month, they offered four early Godard films on 16 mm. After the final screening, of “Masculin Feminin,” they announced tonight’s film with the triumphant reveal of a VHS tape: “Little Marines 2,” the classic, overlooked sequel to the classic, overlooked “Little Marines.” I say this with absolute confidence, having never seen it. The Splice team called it “Our very own ‘Troll 2,'” and on Rotten Tomatoes, it received a score of “Sorry. We Couldn’t find the page you were looking for.” The film will be the first of a pair of B-movies shot and set in Arkansas and screened on glorious, picture-perfect VHS. Next up (on May 21) will be “Stay Tuned For Murder,” which one exacting IMDB reviewer called a “regional mystery from Arkansas that is professionally acceptable.” They’ll take the other two weeks of the month off for the LR Film Festival and fundraising efforts. Screenings are Wednesday nights at 7:30.