This year marks the 50th anniversary of Film at Lincoln Center. As we reflect on our organization’s legendary past and vibrant present, we know that this historic moment would not have been possible without the support, passion, and commitment of our incredible members and patrons.

This landmark anniversary marks not only a celebration of our history but also a look ahead at the exciting things in store. To commemorate this special occasion, we want to hear directly from all of you. Each month we will celebrate and showcase our unparalleled community of film lovers, including a Member Spotlight column in the member and patron newsletter that will reflect information collected from you in this form. Thank you for the vital role you have played in the organization’s first 50 years. We look forward to the next 50!

Submit your stories here.

For this month’s Member Spotlight, we spoke with Ari Rifkin. Ari is a Film at Lincoln Center Patron and generously hosted all screenings and programs on October 2 during the 57th New York Film Festival. She believes in giving back to society and to her Wyoming, Indiana, Florida, and New York, communities.

Why is cinema so special/important to you?

I grew up with limited means in Israel but with unlimited exposure to culture. I started going to the movies when I was 10 or 12 years old with a girlfriend whose father was the Universal representative in Israel, and therefore we had access to free tickets. In addition, my mother loved Indian movies, and we would go see Indian films together once or twice a week.

Do you recall the first movie you ever saw in a movie theater? If so, can you tell us what it was and your experience seeing it?

The first movie I remember seeing was Tiger Bay with Horst Buchholz and Hayley Mills. I had a big crush on him for many years! The first R-rated movie I got into when I was 15 I remember seeing was Last Train from Gun Hill with Anthony Quinn and Kirk Douglas.The first Indian movie I ever saw was The Wanderer with Raj Kapoor.

Do you recall the first movie or event you saw here at FLC or NYFF?

The first movie I ever saw at Film at Lincoln Center would have been the Opening Night of the New York Film Festival my first year attending: Life of Pi in 2012.

What is your fondest memory at FLC?

I have enjoyed going upstairs to the Hauser Lounge during the New York Film Festival, where I get to talk to many people who have just seen a movie or are about to go into a movie. It’s great hearing what they liked about a film, and it helps me choose which movies to go to.

Why did you become a Patron of the organization?

I came to live part time in New York seven years ago. Since I had been involved with many arts organizations in Wyoming and Florida, it was a natural fit for me to join Film at Lincoln Center. I love classical music, but film has always been a passion of mine. Film at Lincoln Center seemed like it was a great place to meet people with a like-minded passion for movies.

What are your top three (or more!) favorite films? Did you see any of them here at FLC or NYFF?  

Favorite movies are listed in order: Gloomy Sunday, Splendor in the Grass, Tiger Bay, The Journey. At this year’s New York Film Festival, I really enjoyed Motherless Brooklyn, Marriage Story, The Cotton Club Encore, and Joker.

Who are your favorite actors?

Diane Lane, Elisabeth Moss, Helen Mirren

Joaquin Phoenix, Brad Pitt, Warren Beatty, Yul Brynner

Interested in becoming a Member of Film at Lincoln Center? Learn more about our Member, Patron, and New Wave programs and join anytime!