a highly-opinionated selection of things happening around town, and sometimes out of town. this month's page here.

tue. feb. 27

cabin in the sky 1 PM @ lacma
nels cline @ the echo

wed. feb. 28

the mirror, the sacrifice @ new beverly theatre
french kicks, icebird @ troubadour
the chicken, my dad is 100 years old, stromboli @ ucla film archive

thu. mar. 1

the mirror, the sacrifice @ new beverly theatre
sparrows 8 PM @ silent movie theatre
bad dudes, the mae shi, bipolar bear @ the smell
arthur magazine awake a wake 7:30 @ family

fri. mar. 2

clinic @ troubadour
play it again sam, modern romance @ new beverly theatre
the pope @ the smell
the godless girl, a kiss for cinderella @ ucla film archive
ditty bops @ mccabe's
the 4th man @ aero theatre
the seventh seal, black orpheus @ lacma

sat. mar. 3

play it again sam, modern romance @ new beverly theatre
la strada, il posto @ lacma
kraig grady @ il corral
nels cline singers, mike watt and the missingmen @ safari sam's

sun. mar. 4

guy maddin short film sampler 7 PM, ministry of fear @ ucla film archive
brightblack morning light @ mccabe's
the mack, the chinese mack @ new beverly theatre
black book @ aero theatre

mon. mar. 5

the mack, the chinese mack @ new beverly theatre
bill morrison's theater of decaying memories 8 PM @ redcat

tue. mar. 6

goat glands carpet underlay and cinema sat backwards: a talk by guy maddin FREE @ ucla film archive
the mack, the chinese mack @ new beverly theatre
neil hamburger, tim and eric awesome tour @ the echo
kraig grady @ il corral

wed. mar. 7

machine gun mccain, wipeout @ new beverly theatre
the friends of eddie coyle @ aero theatre
medicine fuck dream (greg ashley) @ the scene
power & control: lsd in the 60s 8 PM @ 7 dudley cinema

thu. mar. 8

machine gun mccain, wipeout @ new beverly theatre

fri. mar. 9

caught, on dangerous ground @ ucla film archive
the van, pick-up summer, summer camp @ new beverly theatre
angel-a @ aero theatre
summertime, pygmalion @ lacma

sat. mar. 10

street of chance @ starlight studio
saccharine trust @ mr. t's bowl
the van, pick-up summer, summer camp @ new beverly theatre
subway, leon @ aero theatre
rashomon, high and low @ lacma

sun. mar. 11

mountain goats @ el rey
rolling thunder, the town that dreaded sundown @ new beverly theatre
the big blue @ aero theatre

mon. mar. 12

rolling thunder, the town that dreaded sundown @ new beverly theatre

tue. mar. 13

el perro del mar @ echo rec center studios
rolling thunder, the town that dreaded sundown @ new beverly theatre

wed. mar. 14

grizzly man 8:30 PM FREE @ ampas linwood dunn
chinese hercules, black dragon @ new beverly theatre

thu. mar. 15

chinese hercules, black dragon @ new beverly theatre

fri. mar. 16

el topo MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre
beauty and the beast, the spirit of the beehive @ lacma

sat. mar. 17

secrets, make way for tomorrow @ ucla film archive
alatriste, salvador @ egyptian theatre
jules et jim, cleo from 5 to 7 @ lacma

sun. mar. 18

brotherhood of death, johnny tough @ new beverly theatre

mon. mar. 19

brotherhood of death, johnny tough @ new beverly theatre
metropolis 8 PM, a trip to the moon, einstein's theory of relativity @ silent movie theatre

tue. mar. 20

the helio sequence @ the echo
brotherhood of death, johnny tough @ new beverly theatre

wed. mar. 21

autopsy, eyeball @ new beverly theatre

thu. mar. 22

antibalas @ troubadour
autopsy, eyeball @ new beverly theatre
the railroad all stars, the great match @ egyptian theatre
nosferatu the vampyre @ aero theatre
metropolis 8 PM, a trip to the moon, einstein's theory of relativity @ silent movie theatre

fri. mar. 23

santa sangre MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre
coonskin, shame of the jungle, tunnel vision @ new beverly theatre
the mystery of kaspar hauser, heart of glass @ aero theatre
kwaidan @ lacma

sat. mar. 24

the lady has plans @ starlight studio
coonskin, shame of the jungle, tunnel vision @ new beverly theatre
celia's lives, the night of the sunflowers @ egyptian theatre
aguirre the wrath of god, fitzcarraldo @ aero theatre
viridiana, knife in the water @ lacma
sharp ease @ the smell

sun. mar. 25

pretty maids all in a row, revenge of the cheerleaders @ new beverly theatre
lessons of darkness, grizzly man @ aero theatre

mon. mar. 26

pretty maids all in a row, revenge of the cheerleaders @ new beverly theatre

tue. mar. 27

pretty maids all in a row, revenge of the cheerleaders @ new beverly theatre

wed. mar. 28

fearless fighters, supermanchu @ new beverly theatre
high and low @ aero theatre

thu. mar. 29

fearless fighters, supermanchu @ new beverly theatre
the curse of quon gwon, her wild oat @ ampas linwood dunn theatre
cria cuervos, spirit of the beehive @ aero theatre
battleship potemkin 8 PM @ silent movie theatre

fri. mar. 30

dos @ the smell
the blood spattered bride, asylum of blood, mary mary bloody mary @ new beverly theatre
night tide, the beat, reflections of a beatnik @ egyptian theatre
the seventh seal, wild strawberries @ aero theatre
the 400 blows, monika @ lacma

sat. mar. 31

the blood spattered bride, asylum of blood, mary mary bloody mary @ new beverly theatre
the beat generation, the connection @ egyptian theatre
zero for conduct, jules and jim, cleo from 5 to 7 @ aero theatre
pickpocket, l'avventura @ lacma

sun. apr. 1

the lady in red, bare knuckles @ new beverly theatre
viridiana, black orpheus @ aero theatre

mon. apr. 2

the lady in red, bare knuckles @ new beverly theatre
antarcticans FREE @ silver lake lounge

tue. apr. 3

the lady in red, bare knuckles @ new beverly theatre
last refuge for the senses or noise hippies against all war 7 PM FREE @ 7 dudley cinema

wed. apr. 4

the female bunch, wonder women @ new beverly theatre
experimental documentaries by konefsky & benstock 8 PM FREE @ 7 dudley cinema

fri. apr. 6

the thermals @ the echo
white line fever, return to macon county @ new beverly theatre
madame de..., death of a cyclist @ lacma

sat. apr. 7

the mad doctor of market street @ starlight studio
white line fever, return to macon county @ new beverly theatre
zero de conduite, the rules of the game @ lacma

sun. apr. 8

the girl from starship venus, the legend of the wolf woman @ new beverly theatre

mon. apr. 9

the girl from starship venus, the legend of the wolf woman @ new beverly theatre

tue. apr. 10

the girl from starship venus, the legend of the wolf woman @ new beverly theatre
mt. eerie @ the smell

wed. apr. 11

slithis, screams of a winter night @ new beverly theatre

thu. apr. 12

slithis, screams of a winter night @ new beverly theatre

fri. apr. 13

suspiria MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre
hot summer in barefoot county, redneck miller @ new beverly theatre

sat. apr. 14

the ponys @ the echo
hot summer in barefoot county, redneck miller @ new beverly theatre

sun. apr. 15

the muthers, fight for your life @ new beverly theatre

mon. apr. 16

the muthers, fight for your life @ new beverly theatre

tue. apr. 17

the muthers, fight for your life @ new beverly theatre

wed. apr. 18

dragon's vengeance, kung fu the punch of death @ new beverly theatre

thu. apr. 19

dragon's vengeance, kung fu the punch of death @ new beverly theatre

fri. apr. 20

trans am @ troubadour

sat. apr. 21

true to life @ starlight studios
bad dudes @ the smell

sun. apr. 22

grave of the vampire, jailbait babysitter @ new beverly theatre

mon. apr. 23

grave of the vampire, jailbait babysitter @ new beverly theatre

tue. apr. 24

grave of the vampire, jailbait babysitter @ new beverly theatre

wed. apr. 25

return of the tiger, stoner @ new beverly theatre

thu. apr. 26

return of the tiger, stoner @ new beverly theatre

fri. apr. 27

death rage, cry of the prostitute @ new beverly theatre

sat. apr. 28

death rage, cry of the prostitute @ new beverly theatre

may 5

the hour before the dawn @ starlight studios

fri may 18

melt banana @ troubadour

sat. may 19

standing room only @ starlight studios

may 26

echo curio @ mr. t's bowl

sat. jun. 16

lavender diamond @ troubadour

fri. jun. 22

low @ troubadour

sat. jun. 23

low @ troubadour

fri. jun. 29
von trier's medea 8 PM @ getty villa
raccoo-oo-oon @ the smell

sat. jun. 30

pasolini's medea 8 PM @ getty villa


AGUIRRE, THE WRATH OF GOD, 1972, New Yorker Films, 93 min. Klaus Kinski is Aguirre, a power hungry lunatic who leads a Spanish military expedition down the Amazon in hopes of finding El Dorado, the legendary city of gold. From the opening images of conquistadors snaking their way through the jungle, director Werner Herzog’s epic achieves a rare, operatic delirium. Laced with surreal humor - "spears are getting longer this year," notes one skewered soldier -- AGUIRRE is the first of the great Kinski - Herzog collaborations (the two reportedly met when their families shared a house together in Munich). With Helena Rojo, Del Negro.

ANGEL – A, 2006, Sony Pictures Classics, 90 min. Dir. Luc Besson. Down-on-his-luck petty criminal Andre (Jamel Debbouze) has reached the end of his rope. Irreversibly in debt to a local gangster, with no one to turn to, his only solution is to plunge himself into the Seine. Just as he is perched to do so, a fellow bridge-jumper beats him to the water. Diving in, he saves Angela (Rie Rasmussen), a beautiful, statuesque and mysterious woman. As they pull themselves out of the water, the two form a bond and venture into the streets of Paris determined to get Andre out of the hole he has found himself in. As Andre will find out, not all debts are financial, and sometimes the solutions to life’s problems are found in the unlikeliest of places. Is Angela simply repaying Andre for his kindness, or are there other forces at work beyond his comprehension? "…a fable about self-acceptance set in a ravishingly lensed, hauntingly vacant Paris… Shimmering in the early morning light, it's a city whose streets and bridges exist only for Andre and Angela -- and for our aesthetic pleasure." – Lisa Nesselson, Variety Discussion following with director Luc Besson.

(from IMDB)
The journalist Alan Foster makes a bet than he can spend one night at the haunted Blackwood Castle. As he learns, the rumours of ghosts at the castle are indeed true.

(from IMDB)
The very first fantasy-science fiction film! The motion picture was invented by the Lumiere Brothers and their first films to be shown were released in Paris in 1895. A magician by the name of Georges Melies happened to view these films at one of their shows and he was so impressed that a few months later he got his own motion picture camera and studio and in 1896 he began making short films. All of Georges Melies films were all to do with magic and changing from one scene to the next and trick photography and special effects. In his film career from 1896 to 1914, Melies directed over 400 films and the most famous of all his films was the 1902 film A Trip to the Moon.
The film only runs between 12 to 14 minutes (depending on frames per second, usually it's projected at 16 frames per second) but it is a delightful treat in it's short running time. It was of course the famous story "Le Voyage dans la Lune" by Jules Verne and it was fantasy.

(from IMDB)
A pathology med student and a priest team up to investigate a wave of suicides blamed on sun spots and discover a number of them to be actual murders.

(from IMDB)
A bounty hunter in Los Angeles sets out to track down and stop a masked serial killer who murders women by using kung-fu moves.

(from IMDB)
Quite a lot has been said about this film and its landmark importance in forming the language of film. If you are interested in film history, to truly understand the innovations Eisenstein brings to the medium you might try viewing Potemkin along side most any film made before it (those of D.W. Griffith offer a good contrast). It should be allowed that Eisenstein was not the only montage theorist and the principles of montage editing would likely have been discovered by another given time. However, even today, few directors have approached the skill with which Eisenstein created meaning through the combination of images at such an early point in the evolution of the medium.
If you are not interested in that sort of thing, Potemkin is still one of the most beautiful and moving films ever made.

THE BEAT GENERATION, 1959, 95 min. "The wild, weird world of the Beatniks! ...Sullen rebels, defiant chicks...searching for a life of their own!" Shrewd producer Albert Zugsmith (TOUCH OF EVIL, THE TARNISHED ANGELS) latched onto the then-current catch phrase describing a new movement of jazz buffs, literary rebels and societal drop-outs to use as a movie title and backdrop for his entertaining and exploitive sleaze noir directed by Charles Haas (GIRLS TOWN, THE BIG OPERATOR). Steve Cochran is a tough-as-nails L.A. detective on the trail of serial rapist, The Aspirin Kid (Ray Danton), a path that leads him through coffee houses, poetry readings and assorted sin dens. When Cochran’s own wife (Fay Spain) ends up a victim, we see our hero assuming a few misogynistic traits in common with villain, Danton; just one of the few surprising turns in Richard Matheson and Lewis Meltzer’s bizarre, hardboiled script. The eye-popping cast includes Mamie Van Doren, Margaret Hayes, Louis Armstrong, James Mitchum, Jackie Coogan, Vampira (reciting some twisted poetry) and "Slapsy Maxie" Rosenbloom as a wrestling beatnik! NOT ON DVD. Discussion in between films with actress Mamie Van Doren.

THE BIG BLUE, 1988, Sony Repertory, 168 min. Directors Cut. Although it was originally released in the USA in a severely-edited form and received mixed reviews, this full length original version was a smash hit in France, nominated for eight Cesar Awards and winner of two, including Best Music. Sea-lover Luc Besson lets his devotion to all things oceanic, particularly the experience of diving, run the full gamut of emotions here, making the water a character in and of itself. His very personal film is part mystical quest, part bittersweet romantic comedy, with Jacques (Jean-Marc Barr), who lost his diver father to the ocean, obsessed with proving himself more dolphin than man. It is just too bad that clerk Johanna (Rosanna Arquette) meets and falls in love with him while she is on a trip to Peru. She begins to follow Jacques on his mission, journeying to Taormina, Italy, where he will compete against childhood friend, Enzo (Jean Reno) for a deep sea free-diving championship (diving without oxygen tanks). "The real star of the film, however, is the third corner of the love triangle, the sea itself. Sumptuously captured by Besson's camera, and brought to life by Eric Serra's haunting score, it is sometimes beautiful and calm, other times dark and threatening…There are so many reasons to love this film, and an opportunity to catch it in all its soaring majesty on the big screen should not be missed." – Ben Stephens, Edinburgh University Film Society

“Bill Morrison’s films are as much celebrations of the sometimes-frightening beauty of decomposing film as laments for vanishing relics of cinema’s origin.” Senses of Cinema
Noted for his poetic reworking of decaying archival footage, the Alpert Award winner shows a selection of shorts, ranging from the early Footprints (1992, 6 min., b/w and color, 16mm) to The Highwater Trilogy (2006, 31 min., 35mm)—a collage of ancient newsreel footage of storms, floods and icebergs. The program also includes The Film of Her (1996, 12 min., b/w, 35mm), in which archival footage is reinterpreted through fictional elements to evoke “an unrequited celluloid romance”; Light Is Calling (2004, 8 min, color, 35mm), widely recognized as a masterpiece; the exhilaratingly rhythmical Outerborough (2005, 9.5 min, 35mm); Ghost Trip (2000, 23 min, B/W, 35mm); and The Mesmerist (2003, 16 min, color, 35mm). In person: Bill Morrison

BLACK BOOK, 2007, Sony Picture Classics, 145 min. A relentlessly gripping thriller about the Dutch underground set in the Fall of 1944, the film marks master director Paul Verhoeven’s return to his native Netherlands revisiting the action-filled World War II subject matter of his 1977 Dutch drama SOLDIER OF ORANGE. Based on true events that span nearly a year in the life of Rachel Stein (Carice van Houten), a young, pretty Jewish woman who falls for a high-ranking Gestapo officer (Sebastian Koch) while seeking revenge for her family's murders. Starring some of the Netherlands’ most impressive and celebrated actors, the multi-layered characters find themselves embroiled in a spider’s web of intrigue, treachery and betrayal. BLACK BOOK is a highly stylized film suffused with the intense paranoia Verhoeven evokes so well, where friends and enemies blur together into an indistinguishable line. "The epic film is a high-octane adventure rooted in fact with a raft of arresting characters, big action sequences and twists and turns galore…" – Ray Bennett, The Hollywood Reporter Discussion following with director Paul Verhoeven.

(from IMDB)
A young husband's sexual fantasies frighten his new wife and cause her to seek advice from Carmilla, a descendent of Mircalla de Karnstein. Carmilla seduces the young bride and forces her to commit gory acts of mutilation.

(from IMDB)
A group of black Vietnam vets go up against the Ku Klux Klan.

(1949) Directed by Max Ophuls
While the seething wrath that makes James Mason unsurpassingly sado-sexy in THE SEVENTH VEIL remains untapped by Max Ophuls in this, the British actor's American debut, terrifying co-star Robert Ryan more than makes up for it with an orgiastic spree of marital jealousy and paranoia in this speculative peek into what it might be like to be married to Howard Hughes, or someone just like him anyway. Young Barbara Bel Geddes is the lucky bride!
Based on on the novel by Libbie Block. Producer: Wolfgang Reinhardt. Screenwriter: Arthur Laurents. Cinematographer: Lee Garmes. Editor: Robert Parrish. Cast: James Mason, Barbara Bel Gaddes, Robert Ryan. 35mm, 88 min.

CELIA’S LIVES (LAS VIDAS DE CELIA), 2006, 101 min. Director Antonio Chavarrias’ mystery unfolds like an intricate patchwork quilt, showing the effects of a teenage girl’s murder on the family of the dead girl’s best friend, Angela (Aida Folch). Angela’s big sister Celia (Najwa Nimri) has had other disheartening news as well, and it becomes clear that not only she, but her moody husband, Agustin (Daniel Gimenez Cacho, ARO TOLBUKHIN) have their own secrets to hide. Reliable Luis Tosar is the dogged police detective who patiently canvases the neighborhood trying to unravel the ever more confusing puzzle. It is a testament to Chavarrias (who also wrote the script) and his terrific ensemble cast that the audience is kept guessing on just who did what till the very end – nobody here, including Tosar’s cop Miguel, is a perfect person, and the absolutes of the law are continually subverted by the traitorous emotions of all concerned.

(Siamo donne—Ingrid Bergman)
(1952) Directed by Roberto Rossellini
This tender and loving portrait of Ingrid Bergman by Rossellini finds the actress recounting a humorous anecdote involving the titular barnyard fowl.
Producer: Alfredo Guarani. Screenwriter: Cesare Zavattini, Luigi Chiarini. Cinematographer: Otello Martelli. Editor: Jolanda Benvenuti. Cast: Ingrid Bergman, Renzo Rossellini, Isabella Rossellini, Isotta Rossellini. 16mm, 17 min.

(from IMDB)
Chan Wai Man is a fighter, and doesn't get along with his fiancé's brother. In fact, he accidentally kills him and runs away. He vows never to raise his fists in anger again, and finds work at a dock. The company owning the dock is down-right nasty, repeatedly cheating and abusing their workers. The workers try to fight back, but only Chan is strong enough to actually beat the company bosses and their henchmen.

CLEO FROM 5 TO 7, 1951, Janus Films, 90 min. Agnes Varda’s breakthrough film, two hours in the life of a hopelessly pretty pop singer (Corrine Marchand), who may or may not be dying of cancer. CLEO ranks with BREATHLESS and THE 400 BLOWS as one of the seminal works of the French New Wave. "The streets of Paris are filmed like they have never again been filmed." – Telerama

THE CONNECTION, 1962, 110 min. While the big Hollywood studios couldn’t manage anything more genuine than our whacked-out co-feature THE BEAT GENERATION or the totally anemic, wrong-headed adaptation of Kerouac’s THE SUBTERRANEANS (which was unavailable for screening), Shirley Clarke’s experimental drama from New York had certified "beat" roots and a down-and-dirty style. Using a film-within-a-film framework, Clarke follows a clueless cinema verite documentarian as he records the waiting game played by hep jazz musicians congregated in an apartment in anticipation of their next fix. Director Clarke remains a relatively unsung, now virtually forgotten champion of early independent film. Operating in the same universe as John Cassavetes, she later produced such unassuming masterpieces as THE COOL WORLD and PORTRAIT OF JASON. With many award-winning shorts already to her credit, THE CONNECTION was her debut feature and won her wide critical acclaim. The great ensemble cast includes Warren Finnerty, Roscoe Lee Browne, William Redfield, Carl Lee, Jerome Raphael, Barbara Winchester and Giorgia Moll. "What's most radical about Clarke's movie isn't the depiction of the needle and the damage done but her critique of the burgeoning American cinema verite movement and its claims of capturing "the truth." – Melissa Anderson, The Village Voice NOT ON DVD.

(from IMDB)
A multi-layered satire of race relations in America. Live-action sequences of a prison break bracket the animated story of Brother Rabbit, Brother Bear, and Preacher Fox, who rise to the top of the crime ranks in Harlem by going up against a con-man, a racist cop, and the Mafia.

CRIA CUERVOS, 1976, Janus Films, 115 min. Dir. Carlos Saura. The marvelous, almost otherworldly Ana Torrent (SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE, THESIS) stars as an 8-year-old girl who is convinced she holds the power of life and death over her house’s inhabitants. The title refers to an old Spanish saying: "Raise crows and they’ll peck out your eyes." Winner of the Special Jury Award at Cannes, CRIA CUERVOS is Saura at his very best -- mysterious, breathtaking, inescapable. With Geraldine Chaplin. "Ana Torrent, Conchita Perez and Maite Sanchez Alexandros constitute the most extraordinary incarnations of childhood I have seen on the screen. To watch these three girls... is to see childhood at long last as a jungle of wild feelings in which death is stared at without flinching." -- Andrew Sarris, Village Voice

(from IMDB)
I would advise those reared on Hollywood blockbusters and popcorn to steer well clear, but for those of us who enjoy these cheap and cheerful Italian productions with their inane dialogue and gratuitous violence and nudity then 'Cry Of A Prostitute' may well appeal. The mighty Henry Silva plays Tony Aniante who yo-yo's back and forth between two rival families in Sicily, playing both hands until he sees the moment to take the initiative. Yes, we've seen it all before but for me , the film is all about Henry Silva. His fans will be pleased to know that he gets maximum screen time in this one and has at least one classic scene, where he is being taunted by a couple of hoods in a café. One of them pours hot coffee over his expensive leather shoes and all hell breaks loose ("Clean my shoes motherf*****!"). Barbara Bouchet is as memorable as ever as the slutty, bored 'wife' of one of the mafia dons. Best scene has to be where she is flirting with Henry Silva by simulating fellatio on a banana at the dinner table... The action scenes are clumsy in places but fairly bloody (lots of slo-mo bursting blood squibs!) and the score is pretty good too.

The Curse of Quon Gwon (1917) (fragment)
The first known feature made by Chinese-Americans, and one of the few American silent feature films directed by a woman, this drama was thought to be completely lost until filmmaker Arthur Dong discovered two surviving reels in the possession of the lead actress’s daughters while he was researching a documentary. Dong was authorized to bring the nitrate 35mm negative of reels 4 and 7, as well as ten minutes of additional 16mm footage, to the Academy Film Archive for preservation, returning this rare glimpse into early 20th century Chinese-American culture to its place in film history. The Curse of Quon Gwon was produced in Oakland, California.

Death of a Cyclist
(1955/b&w/88 min.) Scr: Juan Antonio Bardem, Luis Fernando de Igoa; dir: Juan Antonio Bardem; w/ Lucia Bosé, Alberto Closas, Carlos Casaravilla, Otello Toso
A rare production from Francisco Franco's Spain, Death of a Cyclist is a powerful blend of film noir and neorealism starring Italian actress Lucia Bosé of early Antonioni fame (Cronaca di un Amore [Story of a Love Affair ]) as the wife of a wealthy industrialist embroiled in an adulterous affair with a college professor. While speeding toward Madrid from a clandestine tryst, the two lovers accidentally run down a bicyclist and, panicking, leave him to die. As they try to conceal their love from society and the hit-and-run accident from police, Bardem shows how a crime of chance can lead to one of premeditation.

(from IMDB)
Yul Brynner plays Peter Marciani, an aging hit-man hired to go to Italy to kill a mob boss. At first he refuses until he learns that his intended target is responsible for his brother's death. Along the way, he meets and befriends a young, overly helpful, wannabe mobster and a beautiful showgirl. Can these three pull off the job?

(from IMDB)
In the early 20th century, Albert Einstein's Theory of Relativity was revolutionary with the new perceptions of reality it gave. With animated illustrations, the Fleischer Brothers explain the general principles of this theory in simple terms.

I YAM WHAT I YAM ('05, 16m) - Bryan Konefsky's inspired doc starts in 1929 when monocular vision was not limited to the gaze of telescopes (Edwin Hubble) or movie cameras (Dziga Vertov). 1929 was also the year that the one-eyed, “strong to the finish” sailor named Popeye was first introduced to the United States as a comic strip character. And, even after 75 years and 234 movies, Popeye’s rebel yell for the common good, “I yam what I yam” still resonates with the hope and conviction of his visionary colleagues. CHICKEN DELIGHT ('06, 22m) Konefsky's meditation on the United States' ongoing courtship with radioactivity & the FDA's decision to serve irradiated meat in their School Lunch Program. KONEFSKY INTERVIEW ('06, 60m) colorful conversation between Bryan & Fialka. ORDERS OF LOVE ('05, 10m) Benstock's personal doc about the hidden influences that the past generations have on our personalities. THE HOLOCAUST TOURIST - From Never Again to Kitsch & Hot Dogs ('06, 10m) Benstock's wry animated documentary about how Holocaust tourism distorts history. A whistlestop tour from Auschwitz hot-dogs to Krakow's kitsch Judaica. BENSTOCK INTERVIEW ('06, 60m) thoughtful dialogue with Jeremy & Fialka.

(from IMDB)
Killer in red cape and hood is killing off tourists on a tour bus by gouging out thier eyeballs.

(from IMDB)
A famous hero is guarding the transportation of a supply of gold and jewels. Attacked by bandits, he successfully fights them off. The Bandits vow - revenge! The chief of the bandits goes to ask help from a brother member of his martial arts clan, but the brother won't commit crime - so the bandit chief vows - revenge! Instead he hires a group of archers, and they kill the great hero. When his son and daughter here of it, they vow - revenge! Measnwhile, the bandit chief kills the whole family of the clan brother who wouldn't join his clan so the brother vows - revenge! Meanwhile, the bandit chief hires a super-swordsman to fight against the clan brother; since this is an insult to his previous super-swordsman, the latter vows -revenge! Meanewhile, a group of bandits dressed as zombies, who were previously defeated by the clan brother, show up to take their - revenge! After which the new super-swordsman shows up and disposes of the clan-brother's left arm and right leg; the clan brother learns how to fight using only prosthetic limbs - just so he can take his - revenge!

(from IMDB)
After a string of bad times with men, Sandy tries to kill herself. Co-waitress Libby saves her and takes her to meet some female friends of hers who live on a ranch in the desert. Grace, the leader of the gang, puts Sandy through her initiation and they get on with the real job of running drugs across the Mexican border, hassling poor farmers, taking any man they please, and generally raising a little hell. Soon Sandy becomes unsure if this is the life for her, but it may be too late to get out.

(from IMDB)
FIGHT FOR YOUR LIFE may well be one of the most politically incorrect movies ever made, but it's also one of the most gripping and entertaining examples of the zero-budget grindhouse genre since the blaxploitation flicks of Jack Hill and early Wes Craven (whose THE HILLS HAVE EYES came out the same year). A trio of thoroughly unlikeable convicts under the loose command of a convicted rapist and murderer (William Sanderson in an amazing no-holds-barred performance) escape from a prison escort van following a traffic accident and hole up in the remote home of a God-fearing black family. Unfortunately Sanderson isn't exactly the tolerant type and subjects the family to all manner of abuse, mainly verbal (some of Sanderson's lines are SO outrageous they're actually perversely amusing) as it happens, but when he gets physical things get extremely disturbing.

FITZCARRALDO, 1982, IPMA, 158 min. Rubber baron and music fanatic Fitzcarraldo (Klaus Kinski) journeys down the darkest byways of the Amazon to build an opera house at the rain forest’s heart. Like his title character, director Werner Herzog reaches an ambitious pinnacle of achievement here – the staggeringly impossible odds that seem to weigh against Fitzcarraldo ever reaching his goal were mirrored by Herzog’s own attempts to complete the film (which were chronicled in Les Blank’s astonishing documentary, BURDEN OF DREAMS). Co-starring a ravishing Claudia Cardinale as Fitzcarraldo’s strong, outspoken paramour who believes in him. A must-see! Discussion in between films with director Werner Herzog.

THE 4TH MAN (DE VIERDE MAN), 1983, 105 min. Paul Verhoeven's surreal, Hitchcockian black comedy. Jeroen Krabbe (SOLDIER OF ORANGE) plays Reve, a drunken, bisexual Catholic novelist experiencing intense hallucinations. While lecturing in Holland, he finds himself spending the night with beautiful hairdresser, Christine (Rene Soutendijk), even though his visions are warning him of danger. As he begins to desire Christine's hunky boyfriend, he discovers her secrets, and his madness intensifies. Winner of the Los Angeles Film Critics Award for Best Foreign Film. "…a piss-take on Jungian symbolism…the film riffs on the spider and the fly, Samson and Delilah, castration anxiety, repressed (and not-so-repressed) homosexuality and a horse-choking overdose of Catholic totems... It may be no more than an elaborate joke, but it’s a hell of a joke. Clearly the gateway to such over-the-top satires as ROBOCOP and STARSHIP TROOPERS…" – Sam Adams, Philadelphia City Paper

THE FRIENDS OF EDDIE COYLE, 1973, Paramount, 102 min. Director Peter Yates (BULLITT) adapts George V. Higgins' brilliant slice of Boston low life crime novel. Robert Mitchum is at his finest as streetwise Eddie Coyle, a blue collar fence squeezed between the Feds and his hoodlum cohorts, all the while trying to support his family. Cynical young cop Richard Jordan, hep gun dealer Steven Keats, bank robber Alex Rocco and sociopathic bartender Peter Boyle all use Eddie in one way or another for their own ends. And Eddie plays all ends against the middle, trying to survive and pick up a little change on the side. Gritty and grim, shot completely on Boston locations and full of some of the most wonderfully pungent dialogue this side of GOODFELLAS. NOT ON DVD.

(from IMDB)
While on the surface it looks like a single-joke movie (alien is mistaken for sexy foreign girl and inspires reprobate reactions like 'you Scandinavians don't beat about the bush, do you') The Sexplorer is actually one of Derek Ford's better sex comedies with his self-penned script showing an uncharacteristic amount of inventiveness and wit . Alongside farcical misunderstandings and more nudity than you can shake a 'large probe' at,the film's funniest and freakiest moment finds Monika being offered a drink in a strip-club which has the side-effect of turning her green from head to toe (complete with spray painted Afro-wig). As one character remarks-'she's bloody green as a traffic light'. Ford also shows where his heart lay by throwing in lots of location work-night-time shots of Soho and Piccadilly Circus and scenes taking place in grimy men's toilets and nicotine stained launderettes make The Sexplorer a great 1970's London film.

Maddin will delve into the inner workings of his psyche and may even reveal the secret contents of the Mammalopedia, the source of ALL in his childhood home; or show clips of and recreate his pistol-whipping at the hands of a chimp on his fourth birthday.

(1929) Directed by Cecil B. DeMille
One of the strangest movies ever made by eternally un-ironic über-bombast DeMille! Shot just a few years after the Scopes Monkey Trial, the film opens on a sexually charged college campus war pitting cute co-ed atheists against an angry mob of Christian believers. Some collateral damage lands the two main religious adversaries, played with the electrifying lust we've come to demand of DeMille, in a bizarre reform school where girls and boys toil out their sentences segregated flimsily by a tantalizing, see-through fence!
Producer: Cecil B. DeMille. Titles: Jeanie Macpherson, Beulah Marie Dix. Cinematographer: Peverell Marley. Editor: Anne Bauchens. Cast: Lina Basquette, Marie Prevost, George Duryea, Noah Beery. 35mm, 100 min.

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This unjustly overlooked low-budget 70's drive-in fright pic jewel starts off with an alarmingly savage and startling opening sequence: smarmy malevolent age-old bloodsucker Cleb Croft (a spirited, wonderfully rancorous turn by unsung exploitation film fave Michael Pataki, who not also appears in such grisly goodies as "Dead and Buried," "Graduation Day," and that deathless Grade Z woofer "Dracula's Dog," but also directed both the creepy "Mansion of the Doomed" and the incredibly asinine soft-core sex musical version of "Cinderella" for Charles Band) assaults a libidinous young couple making out in a cemetery; he breaks the guy's back by bending him over a tombstone and tosses the hapless screaming woman (excellently played by Kitty Vallacher, who's tastefully listed in the opening credits as "the reluctant mother") into an open grave so he can ferociously rape her! The result of this terrible tryst is one James Eastman (a most sympathetic performance by legendary biker flick icon William Smith, who's perfect in a rare excursion into the horror genre), who grows up from a sickly baby who drinks blood from a bottle into a shy, soft-spoken, muscular half-man, half-vampire being who obsessively tracks down his evil undead old man -- Caleb works at a local college university as a nighttime professor of a class specializing in the occult! -- and engages in a shockingly brutal bout of no-holds-barred fisticuffs with the pernicious bastard in the film's amazingly violent conclusion. 70's soap opera star Lieux Dressler, who portrayed Claudia Jennings' brassy, domineering mother in the T&A drive-in hoot "Truckstop Women" and the folksy innkeeper in the bang-up revenge-of-the-animals winner "Kingdom of the Spiders," cameos as a batty asylum inmate. David Chase, who later wrote several teleplays for the fantastic, sadly short-lived "Kolchak: The Night Stalker" TV series and most recently created the hit cable TV show "The Sopranos," penned the hip, clever, very twisty and surprise-laden script. John Hayes, who also did the excruciatingly woeful zombie stinker "Garden of the Dead" the same years as this pip and went on to helm the laughably lousy sci-fi clinker "End of the World" (another Chuckie Band gem), masterfully creates a grim, creepy, totally sober mood and makes the most out of a conspicuously paltry, but well-spent budget, thus giving this singularly warped and downbeat humdinger the necessary gloom-doom edge required to make it a genuinely good'n'ghastly little sleeper.

THE GREAT MATCH (AL GRAN FINAL), 2006, 88 min. Dir. Gerardo Olivares. This stunning comedy set in Mongolia, Niger and the Amazon, follows the extraordinary effort of three indigenous groups to see the 2002 final soccer World Cup between Germany and Brazil. In the vast meadow of Mongolia's Altai Mountains, a group of riders returns to the family tent with their eagles in order to watch the game but first they need to connect their TV to the power line. In Niger's Tenere desert, Tuareg Hassan leaves his caravan of camels and joins a truckload of people, convincing them to reroute to an "iron tree" to connect his TV in time for the start of the game. The funniest of all, soccer-shirt wearing tribal hunter Xama is trying to set up a TV set and an ancient dynamo in his compound in the Brazilian jungle. National Geographic lovers and soccer fans will unite in this delicious movie. NOT ON DVD.

This program features a number of Maddin's own exquisite short films, including new and rarely seen work. Full program information and a list of films will be available at the theater and at
Various formats, 90 min.

HEART OF GLASS (HERZ AUS GLAS), 1976, New Yorker Films, 93 min. A whole town is thrown into confused despair when its foremost industry, the manufacture of "Ruby Glass," comes to an abrupt halt. The problem is that the only man who knows how the glass is made has died. Always abstract and many times absurdist, HEART OF GLASS divides its attention amongst the various townspeople as they struggle with the town’s loss as well as their own personal problems. Director Werner Herzog finds yet another creative way to use his performers by having the whole cast minus one (Josef Bierbichler as the town’s melancholy prophet-in-residence, Hias) hypnotized – all to get performances onscreen the likes of which no audience has ever seen before. It is pretty safe to say that he accomplishes just that. Ultimately, Herzog’s foray into the allegorical and abstract is an intriguingly oblique, metaphysical journey into loss, anger and despair with just the slightest glimmer of hope.

Her Wild Oat (1927)
In this feature comedy, presented by the Academy in a newly restored print, silent film star Colleen Moore plays a woman who owns a small lunch wagon and falls for a duke’s son, played by Larry Kent, who is pretending to be his own chauffeur. With her savings, she pursues him to a resort hotel, only to be mistaken for a duchess. Moore, whose career exploded when she adopted her signature flapper haircut, was the top box office star of 1927, and her career continued into the sound era. Her final film role was Hester Prynne the 1934 version of The Scarlet Letter. Many of Moore’s films have been lost to nitrate decomposition, so the return of Her Wild Oat is a rediscovery to be cherished.

HIGH AND LOW, 1963, Janus Films, 142 min. Dir. Akira Kurosawa. Ed McBain's 87th Precinct mystery King's Ransom provides an ideal starting point for Akira Kurosawa's study of a man who must measure the extent of his responsibility to others in a society with a huge gulf between the haves and have-nots. Toshiro Mifune stars as a Yokohama shoe manufacturer who has just arranged a 50-million-yen loan in order to gain control of his corporation. His phone rings and a kidnapper (Tsutomu Yamazaki) demands the very same amount in ransom for his only son. That the kidnapper has taken the son of his chauffeur by mistake only makes the manufacturer's dilemma worse: must he face financial ruin in order to save the life of another man's child? The answer lies in this supremely stylish and suspenseful film, as visually and structurally dazzling as it is provocative. With unflagging support from Tatsuya Nakadai as the unassuming head police inspector, Kenjiro Ishiyama and Isao Kimura as dogged police detectives, Kyoko Kagawa as Mifune’s wife and, last but not least, Tatsuya Mihashi as Mifune’s double-dealing personal secretary.

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A city cop is sent out to the country to go undercover and bust up a ring of moonshiners run by a woman and her three hot teenage daughters.

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Vicki is seventeen and her older friends call her Jailbait. Her boyfriend Robert is frustrated because Vicki doesn't want to do the wild thing, but he's willing to wait. After a party gets out of hand, Vicki escapes with the help of Lorraine, who takes her in as a houseguest. While Lorraine teaches Vicki etiquette, Robert wonders what happened to his girlfriend. And Vicki soon learns more about Lorraine's job as an "executive liaison."

(from IMDB)
Johnny is a mischievous kid. He tells the teacher he didn't get his homework done because his mother just died. Of course, the teacher finds out that Johnny's mother is very much among the living. Johnny's antics become much worse when he discovers his parents are having marital problems. This film is not shot well; most of it looks very amateurish. However, it is an interesting time capsule of African-American life in the early to mid 1970s.

(1926) Directed by Herbert Brenon
Written by J.M. Barrie, directed by Herbert Brenon and starring the tirelessly puckish pantomimist Betty Bronson – the same trio that brought the masterpiece PETER PAN to the screen the previous year – this follow-up is positively loaded with charm. Barrie here takes the old fairy tale and meta-narrates it, switching its setting to a London household – no wicked stepfolk this time – during the Great War. Bronson is a frail servant beleaguered by a Cinderella complex, an illness that enables all sorts of Neverland melancholy to permeate the proceedings.
Based on the play by J. M. Barrie. Scenario: Willis Goldbeck, Townsend Martin. Adaptation: Esther Ralston. Cinematographer: J. Roy Hunt. Cast: Betty Bronson, Tom Moore. 16mm, silent, 105 min.
In person: Guy Maddin
Live musical accompaniment for the second feature by Michael Mortilla

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Here the character of `Fong Su Yi' (as pronounced by the English voice cast) is young, callow, and reckless and instigates a dispute with a corrupt rival martial school that results in his father's death and his and his mother's exile. When Fong (Meng Fei) goes after the rivals, Iron Fist Tan (Yasuaki Kurata) and his brother (Wang Ching), he is so badly beaten that it takes months to recuperate under the watchful care of his mother and a young girl he'd helped out. His mother puts him through rigorous training and an herbal bath that will make him invulnerable (no mention is made of the weak point-his rectum!-that figures in so many other films about Fong). Eventually he is able to take on Iron Fist and his brother. The film is very well mounted and shot on lavish studio sets and sprawling locations.

(1964/color/161 min./TohoScope) Scr: Yôko Mizuki; dir: Masaki Kobayashi; w/ Keiko Kishi, Tatsuya Nakadai, Katsuo Nakamura
Visually beautiful and meticulously crafted, Masaki Kobayashi's lavish production is based on four ghost stories by the American expatriate Lafcadio Hearn. "Black Hair" tells of a man who imagines he has found his beloved first wife in their former home. In "Woman in the Snow," two woodcutters caught in a blizzard are confronted by a gigantic, female figure; only one woodcutter escapes. In "Hoichi the Earless," the grizzliest tale, the body of a blind singer is invaded by ghosts from a twelfth-century clan war. And in the final story, "In a Cup of Tea," a warrior challenges a stranger to a duel when he spies the man's reflection in his teacup.

(from IMDB)
1930's gangster era film about Dillinger and his last girl. Written by John Sayles.

Itinerant filmmaker & programmer BEN RUSSELL brings a frenetic mix of post-psychedelic/noise/DIY 16mm films straight from the dirty warehouses of Providence, Rhode Island. From filmmakers JO DERY, XANDER MARRO, MAT BRINKMAN, LEIF GOLDBERG, ARA PETERSON, and HIMSELF, we've got Group Trance Rituals, Direct Dumpster-Dive Animation, History Seen Through the Eyes of Bats, Live Soundtracks, Cut-Up Eyeballs, Single Frame Collectives, Puppet Chaos, Analog Transcendence, and So Much More. Featuring music by Lighting Bolt, Mystery Brinkman, Carly Ptak (Nautical Almanac), the Shirelles vs the Suicidal Tendencies, the Wind-Up Bird, and Dave Lifrieri (Manbeard). These nine films represent the true cinema of deliverance, the theater of psychic hearts and radical love.
Plus: THE MYTHOLOGY SHOW - at 8:30pm. Ben Russell's Mad Visions of Our Collective Existence. Steeped in American folklore THE TWENTY-ONE LIVES OF BILLY THE KID ('05, 56m), psychiatric techniques of the early 20th century BLACK AND WHITE TRYPPS NUMBER TWO ('06, 8m), mask rituals DAUM ('00, 7m), chaos theory BLACK AND WHITE TRYPPS NUMBER ONE ('05, 7m), and polynesian god-worship TERRA INCOGNITA ('02,11m). These five films propose an alternate mythos for the world in which we reside. There are Creation Myths, First Contact Myths, Giant Stone Head Myths, Eternally Bloody Cowboy Myths, and a special screening of what may well be the only 16mm structuralist Western ever made.

(1960/b&w/143 min.) Scr: Michelangelo Antonioni, Elio Bartolini, Tonino Guerra; dir: Michelangelo Antonioni; w/ Monica Vitti, Gabriele Ferzetti, Lea Massari
A towering work of modernist cinema, the story of L'Avventura is deceptively simple: Anna (Massari), a moody, Roman socialite, invites a dozen friends-among them her best friend, Claudia (Vitti), and her lover, Sandro (Ferzetti)- to sail with her to the Aeolian Islands off Sicily. The next afternoon, Anna inexplicably disappears from a small volcanic island and as the other guests drift back to Rome, an anxious Claudia and a reluctant Sandro embark on a journey to find their missing friend whose absence has a powerful and disturbing psychological effect. With its carefully composed images and neorealist locations, erotic undercurrents and hypnotic rhythms, unnerving silences and oblique dialogue, L'Avventura is, in the words of Antonioni, "a detective story told from back to front." Winner of the 1960 special jury prize, Cannes Film Festival.

(from IMDB)
A woman has dreams that she is a werewolf so she goes out and finds men. She proceeds to have sex with them and then rip their throats out with her teeth. She eventually falls in love but then she is raped and her lover is murdered so she goes out for revenge.

LESSONS OF DARKNESS, 1992, IPMA, 50 min. Herzog’s meditation on the apocalypse might be called "documentary Sci-Fi;" an unseen alien visits the oil well fires of Kuwait, to the tune of Mahler and Verdi. As Herzog himself described it, "there’s none of that National Geographic telephoto lens crap – we went right in till the camera started to melt!" Discussion in between films with director Werner Herzog.

(from IMDB)
The movie is pretty good to see in that Peter Falk, of Columbo fame, gives an unexpectedly good performance as a ruthless gangster. The gist is that Cassavettes tries to win one more score from Ganster Falk (sort of like Superfly) and attempts to do so with the help of his "Little Friend", a Thompson Automatic. For a film of the late sixties, it is pretty violent. However, Cassavettes created his own style of directing, and this film showcases it.

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Goldie returns from five years at the state pen and winds up king of the pimping game. Trouble comes in the form of two corrupt white cops and a crime lord who wants him to return to the small time.

(1937) Directed by Leo McCarey
Comedic sophisticate McCarey turns his delighted attention to the subject of ageing parents and what becomes of them, metaphorically and literally—a subject that becomes so poignant in his hands one hardly knows what to do with the sadness pouring out from the screen. The film might have been a flop, but it's a masterful mixture of light humor and grim inexorability—a singular cocktail! Beulah Bondi, luckily blessed with a face that enabled her to play elderly roles for close to fifty years, is the mother at the end of the line.
Paramount. Based on the novel by Josephine Lawrence and the play by Helen Leary, Noah Leary. Producer: Adolph Zukor. Screenwriter: Viña Delmar. Cinematographer: William C. Mellor. Editor: LeRoy Stone. Cast: Victor Moore, Beulah Bondi. 35mm, 92 min.

(from IMDB)
A beautifull artist (Cristina Ferrare) moonlights as a vampire while in Mexico, killing lovers of both sex. It seems that the only person who has any chance of stopping her reign of terror is her father (John Carradine), who's also a vampire.

(1944) Directed by Fritz Lang
Lang piles more tropes, visual mischief and his own steel-cold brand of surrealism into this adaptation of Graham Greene's novel than he does in any other film he made in America. By trading some of his meanness—typical, say, of THE BIG HEAT—for a little playfulness, Lang suddenly finds himself sitting plump next to Hitchcock as the era's co-titans of the thriller. I hope the director gave a crate of champagne to eely heavy Dan Duryea for delivering yet another unbelievably oily performance!
Paramount. Based on the novel by Graham Greene. Producer: Buddy G. DeSylva, Seton I. Miller. Cinematographer: Henry Sharp. Editor: Archie F. Marshek. Cast: Ray Milland, Marjorie Reynolds, Dan Duryea. 35mm, 86 min.
In person: Guy Maddin

(from IMDB)
The director mixes flashbacks, historical footage and original poetry to illustrate the reminiscences of a dying man about his childhood during World War II, adolescence, and a painful divorce in his family. The story interweaves reflections about Russian history and society.

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Robert Cole, a film editor, is constantly breaking up with and reconciling with long-suffering girl friend Mary Harvard, who works at a bank. He is irrationally jealous and self-centered, while Mary has been too willing to let him get away with his disruptive antics. Can they learn to live with each other? Can they learn to live without each other? The movie also provides insight into film editing as Robert and co-worker Jay work on their current project, a cheesy sci-fi movie.

(1953/b&w/96 min.) Scr: Ingmar Bergman, Pers Anders Fogelström; dir: Ingmar Bergman; w/ Harriet Andersson, Lars Ekborg
Ingmar Bergman's most erotic film stars the beautiful Harriet Andersson as Monika, a seventeen-year-old working-class girl whose summer of sailing with her twenty-year-old boyfriend ends in unwanted pregnancy and sudden marriage. Shot over one summer with a small crew, Monika's striking black-and-white images, its documentary-like immediacy, and Andersson's frank sexuality were acclaimed by the young French critics of Cahiers du cinema who were to become the filmmakers of the New Wave.

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Janine "TNT Jackson" Bell stars as half of a modern day pirate duo who, along with savage sista Rosanne Katon, must rescue Janine's sister from the clutches of evil coffee plantation owner Tony Carreon. Along the way they meet sportscaster-turned-actress Jayne Kennedy, who turns up as Carreon's mistress, and Trina "Thumper" Parks, who plays the head prisoner in Carreon's jive java jail.

(2005, Canada) Directed by Guy Maddin
An imaginative love letter to Roberto Rossellini from daughter Isabella, who plays all the parts.
Producer: Jody Shapiro. Screenwriter: Isabella Rossellini. Cinematographer: Len Peterson. Editor: John Gurdebeke. Cast: Isabella Rossellini. 35mm, 17 min.

THE MYSTERY OF KASPAR HAUSER (aka EVERY MAN FOR HIMSELF AND GOD AGAINST ALL), 1974, New Yorker Films, 110 min. One of the landmark works of the New German Cinema, this film is based on a true story of a wild young man found wandering the streets of Nuremberg in 1828. Lead actor Bruno S. was himself a former mental patient and street musician; the pairing of the actor and character gives a startling edge to director Werner Herzog’s parable of innocence corrupted. "KASPAR HAUSER is one of the purest film examples I know of in which an artist of Romantic sensibility puts society to the test and finds it wanting. It's a reworking of the foundling myth (like Truffaut's WILD CHILD ) based on an actual 19th century incident in which a man mysteriously appeared in a German town and claimed he had been raised in a dark room with no human contact." – Walter V. Addiego, San Francisco Examiner

THE NIGHT OF THE SUNFLOWERS (LA NOCHE DE LOS GIRASOLES), 2006, 123 min. This dark, engrossing thriller from director/writer Jorge Sanchez-Cabezudo has overtones of 21 GRAMS and IRREVERSIBLE with its intersecting storylines and moments of startling violence. The mystery begins with the rape/murder of a young woman in a field of sunflowers ... We meet a number of people who seem to have no connection to each other or the crime -- and then slowly, chapter by chapter, their lives start to interlock in inexorable ways. With Carmelo Gomez (DIAS CONTADOS).

NIGHT TIDE, 1961, 84 min. Director Curtis Harrington’s debut indie feature is a masterpiece, a haunted, poetic hymn to the dark world of the fly-by-night carnival, lonely midways at dawn and the siren call of eon’s-old passion spawned by the devils of the deep blue sea. In a fond nod to Val Lewton and Jacques Tourneur’s CAT PEOPLE, at-loose-ends sailor Johnny Drake (Dennis Hopper) falls in love with sideshow mermaid, Mora (Linda Lawson) who may just somehow be related to the real thing. Shot in and around Santa Monica and Venice Beach in the beat culture’s heyday, the film continues to exert a strong spell, and is brimming with the heady atmosphere of bygone coffee houses, poet hipsters, languid jazz and bongos on the shore. With Luana Anders, Gavin Muir. "…captures an intangible quality of what Santa Monica was like in the early 60s. Quite apart from Los Angeles, it was a quiet residential community. The funfair pier has just the right air of seedy despair about it. Everyone seems to be living 'just off' the mainstream."Glenn Erickson, DVD Savant Preceded by the shorts: "Venice In The Sixties" (aka "The Beat") 15 min. Dir. Leland Auslender. Originally shot for a television show and never used, this is essentially a full-color look inside the atmosphere of the Venice West coffeehouse, its various sections, activities and people; "The Beat From Within: Reflections of a Beatnik" 10 min. Produced by Ralph Morin and directed by Tom Koester, this short covers a day in the life of a Venice beatnik in glorious black 'n' white. Plus: Authors Domenic Priore and Brian Chidester (Beatsville, Smile: The Story of Brian Wilson's Lost Masterpiece, Dumb Angel #4: All Summer Long) will present a unique one-hour slide show documenting the Beat Generation's long stretch over the Greater Los Angeles area between 1956 and 1966, via visuals of coffeehouses and jazz joints from the Sunset Strip to Malibu, Venice and Newport Beach. Legendary locations only heard about in books or in liner notes, from the Gas House and nearby Venice West Cafe, to the Unicorn and Shelly's Manne-Hole in Hollywood, the Lighthouse and Insomniac in Hermosa Beach, then all the way down to Cafe Frankenstein (owned, operated and painted by Burt Shonberg). Arists from John Altoon to Eric "Big Daddy" Nord gave these places a colourful splash, as did the wide variety of Folk singers and poets who performed on their stages.

NOSFERATU, THE VAMPYRE, 1978, IPMA, 107 min. Dir. Werner Herzog. An homage to Murnau’s 1922 classic, Herzog’s NOSFERATU achieves its own hypnotic power by evoking a romantic past of waterfalls and mist-filled valleys, and through the eerie sensuality of Klaus Kinski’s performance. Like Aguirre and Fitzcarraldo, Kinski’s Nosferatu is driven by the need for an unknowable spiritual ecstasy - in this case, Isabelle Adjani’s ethereal Lucy. With Bruno Ganz. Director Werner Herzog to introduce screening.

(1952) Directed by Nicholas Ray
Has there ever been a face—rugged and manfully handsome yet fragile with inner agonies promising to explode into volcanic rage—like Robert Ryan's? Nick Ray harnesses the violent force of this face in a story about out-of-control cop Ryan, who is sent to cool off in a snowy outpost—the first snow noir?—and there meets up with a pair of out-of-control adversaries: a child-killer and the child's father. Ward Bond, in this latter role, has never been more precipitous or more startling—his grief and stupidity as powerful and natural as a mountain cataract. Into all this steps the serenely blind farm girl Ida Lupino.
RKO. Based on the novel by Gerald Butler. Producer: Sid Rogell, John Houseman. Screenwriter: A. I. Bezzerides. Cinematographer: George E. Diskant. Editor: Roland Gross. Cast: Ida Lupino, Robert Ryan. 35mm, 82 min.
In person: Guy Maddin (schedule permitting)

(1959/b&w/75 min.) Scr/dir: Robert Bresson; w/ Martin LaSalle, Marika Green
Michel, an alienated academic, picks pockets not for money but for human contact, and he alternately embraces and resists its powerful attraction. But when another pickpocket offers him a place on his team, Michel seizes the chance to train with a pro and Pickpocket shifts into high gear. The extended sequences of professional pickpockets at the top of their game-on the Paris Metro, at the racetrack, in a ticket line, crossing a busy street-generate an adrenaline rush and an edge-of-the-seat tension equal to the best action cinema.

(from IMDB)
It's a summer of fun for two teenaged boys who spend their time chasing two sisters, annoying a biker gang, and basically getting into typical sophomoric hijinks whenever they can.

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A mild mannered film critic is dumped by his wife and his ego is crushed. His hero persona is the tough guy played by Humphrey Bogart in many of his movies and the apparition of Bogart begins showing up to give him advice. With the encouragement of his two married friends, he actually tries dating again, with less than satisfactory results, until he relaxes.

POWER & CONTROL: LSD in the 60's ('06, 40m) Gonzo documentarian Aron Ranen's peripatetic journey uncovers the secret history of psychedelics from legitimate experiments conducted at the Harvard Divinity school to the bizarre plans to dose unknowing Johns in a CIA run brothel. With Ram Dass & Paul Krassner.
Plus: Ranen's DEATH ROW ART STAR ('05, 15m) & THE SQUAT ('06, 7m). Plus: Dragnet's THE PROPHET ('68, 21m) Friday & Gannon discover that faux Leary-Brother William's Temple of the Expanded Mind is mainly concerned with legalizing marijuana & LSD. LSD A GO GO ('04, 10m) Scott Calonico probes the controversy of CIA scientist Frank Olson's 1953 "suicide." CONFIDENTAL FILE ('55, 26m) USC neuro-psychiatrist tests LSD on an artist who has a transcedent experience in this rare TV show episode "LSD: Experiment in Insanity."

(from IMDB)
In a California high school, a married teacher is the athletic coach and faculty advisor. He starts to have sex flings with his female students and eventually has to kill several of the girls to keep them quiet. Based on a novel by Francis Pollini.

THE RAILROAD ALL STARS (ESTRELLAS DE LA LINEA) 2006, 94 min. Director Chema Rodriguez’s in-your-face documentary follows the feisty Railroad All Stars, a totally female soccer team formed in 2004 from inhabitants of one of Guatemala’s worst ghettos. As if the odds were not stacked high enough against them, the women are also prostitutes, and they have organized their team to draw attention to their ongoing exploitation by a hypocritical macho society that routinely beats, robs and even murders them. Their introduction into the world of soccer, as they begin to play other local teams, causes an uproar. Middle class society wants them banned, but the girls also find occasional support from sometimes surprising quarters, including a few of the media representatives covering their story. Winner of the 2006 Sebastian Award at the San Sebastian International Film Festival. NOT ON DVD.

(from IMDB)
The most brutal action packed martial arts battle of the decade, Bruce Li, The Roaring Kung Tiger, faces his deadliest enemy.. the vicious and sadistic torturer from The Midnight Express. The Hoover Night Club in Bangkok is used to coverup the operations of the international narcotics group headed by an American, George Cross. A rival gang, run by a chinese, also tries to dominate the drug market in southeast Asia. Handsome professional killer Chang Hung, accompanied by his female assistant, arrives in Bangkok and smashes a Kung-fu school run by George. Tseng Tse-chan, leader of the chinese group, approaches Chang to eliminate george, but his price is too high. Unknown to him, Chang was hired by George to infiltrate Tseng' racket. The girl's job is to play the 2 rival gangs against each other..

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In 1958, two teenagers take their pride and joy, a hopped-up Chevy, and start a cross-country journey to enter it in the National Championship drag races in California. Along the way they hook up with a pretty but dingy waitress who quits her job and hops in their car--and turns out to be more trouble than they thought--drag-race a gang of town punks who lose to to them and then accuse them of cheating, and come up against a local cop who is obsessed with putting these two "juvenile delinquents" in jail.

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The tale of the Aloha Cheerleaders' struggle against Lincoln high. High points include such events as the Aloha girls raiding a Lincoln classroom to get drugs, then putting aforementioned drugs in the cafeteria food while the state school inspectors are present. Worth the rental price just so if you ever meet David Hasselhoff, you can say "Hey, I loved your work as Boner!"

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William Devane is pretty great as the slightly psycho Vietnam vet who comes home to find that his small town life isn't waiting for him. And, of course, he goes *completely* psycho after...well, I won't spoil anything. Worth mentioning: this film is a big influence on Quentin Tarantino, who named his short-lived film release company after it (i.e. Rolling Thunder Pictures). What a shame that the company didn't survive long enough to re-release the film it's named for. If you're really into '70s cinema, action, sleaze, etc., you have to make an effort to see "Rolling Thunder". For real.

The Rules of the Game
(1939/b&w/106 min.) Scr: Jean Renoir, Carl Koch; dir: Jean Renoir; w/ Marcel Dalio, Nora Grégor, Jean Renoir
In Jean Renoir's masterpiece, made between the Munich accords and the outbreak of World War II, history plays as both tragedy and farce. This self-declared "dramatic fantasy" inspired by The Marriage of Figaro etches, in Renoir's words, "a rich, complex society . . . dancing on a volcano." At a weekend hunting party, amorous escapades abound among the aristocratic guests upstairs and the servants downstairs, but the refusal of one guest to play by society's rules sparks a chain of events that ends in tragedy.
Note: this print is made from negative material digitally restored by Janus Films in 2006.

SALVADOR, 2006, 134 min. Dir. Manuel Huerga. The film retraces the last twelve hours of Salvador Puig Antich (Daniel Brhl), the last political prisoner executed by garrote during the Franco regime, as he receives visits from family and friends. From a student protestor, Salvador becomes an active militant in the resistance movement, but gets caught and condemned to death after a series of bank robberies. A superb performance by German actor Daniel Brhl (GOOD BYE LENIN!). A haunting film. NOT ON DVD.

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Alexander, a journalist and former actor and philosopher, tells his little son how worried he is about the lack of spirituality of modern mankind. In the night of his birthday, the third world war breaks out. In his despair Alexander turns himself in a prayer to God, offering him everything to have the war not happened at all.

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10 college students go camping, when they get there, they tell scary stories to each other.

(1933) Directed by Frank Borzage
Borzage's films always play themselves out in what Martin Scorsese describes aptly as "lovers' time," with much leisurely poring over the details that engorge a romance's most precious formative moments. Here, though, something different is afoot. When you see forty-year-old Mary Pickford colting around as an apparent teen, and perennially snow-topped C. Aubrey Smith sporting great gobs of hair dye, you smell saga, but Borzage the master of melodrama has many tricks and tones up his sleeve, and I defy anyone to guess exactly where this film is going!
Based on the play by Rudolph Besier, May Edington. Producer: Mary Pickford. Screenwriter: Frances Marion. Cinematographer: Ray June. Editor: Hugh Bennett. Cast: Mary Pickford, Leslie Howard, C. Aubrey Smith. 35mm, 85 min.

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A nuclear leak creates a mutant Slithis sea monster, which terrorizes the variety of pets, winos, and hippies who hang around Venice, California.

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Mary Pickford, America's Sweetheart and the most popular movie star in Hollywood's history, had made a career out of playing little girls in general & orphans in particular. Her legions of international fans thrilled at her adventures in harsh orphanages, dealing with stony-hearted adults. Time relentlessly marched on, however, and it became obvious that Little Mary could not carry on the adolescent act forever.
Thus, in 1926 at the age of 34, Pickford appeared in her final orphan picture and she made sure it was a doozy. Never before had one of her characters been subjected to such hideous conditions, surrounded by quicksand, starved & overworked, living at the mercy of a self-avowed baby killer - a reptilian old reprobate who doesn't hesitate to `chuck children into the swamp' whenever he feels like it.

SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE (EL ESPIRITU DE LA COLMENA), 1973, Janus Films, 95 min. Dir. Victor Erice. A film of sublime silence and mystery, equal to the best of Tarkovsky or Antonioni, starring Ana Torrent as an intense young girl who searches the barren fields outside her town, looking for the disembodied spirit of Frankenstein’s monster. Erice’s first feature film was widely hailed as a masterpiece on its release, a near-perfect blend of myth and pure cinematic imagination. The fragile Torrent became, ironically, as haunting a symbol as the film itself – critic Luis Arata noted that "her big soft black eyes seem to be open windows into her mind, where much of THE SPIRIT OF THE BEEHIVE actually takes place," and Katherine Kovacs memorably described her as "wandering like a sleepwalker across a vast and bleak countryside, where the wind never blows and the sun never shines."

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I remember reading an interview with George Lazenby the month after Lee died in which he said that his next movie would be called "THE SHRINE OF THE ULTIMATE BLISS" and that is the name of the villains headquarters in this movie which in English is called "STONER"(after Lazenby's character).Stoner is an Australian cop in Hong Kong seeking the bad guys whose new wonder drug,a kind of super ecstasy,had caused the death of his fiancee.After a smattering of sub James Bond posturing and creaky dialogue he teams up with a Chinese policewoman played by kung fu queen Angela Mao and together they wipe out approximately 1000 henchmen of the villain Dr. Sinn(yes really). The final bout between Mao and Sinn seems to last about half an hour whilst old George is punching and lamely kicking scores of bad guys including "MARTIAL LAW'S" Sammo Hung in a room with a spinning floor.This movie is a must for lovers of movie dross

(Stromboli terra di Dio)
(1949) Directed by Roberto Rossellini
Karin (Ingrid Bergman), a Lithuanian woman recently freed from an Italian internment camp, frets that her spirit is being crushed by her unrefined, fisherman husband (Mario Vitale) and his conservative neighbors. The film is the first of the great Rossellini-Bergman collaborations, but it has mostly been seen in this country in a drastically shortened version that the filmmaker called "proof of Hollywood's brutality". We will be presenting the original, uncut version.
Producer: Roberto Rossellini. Screenwriter: Sergio Amidei, Gian Paolo Callegari, Renzo Cesana, Art Cohn. Cinematographer: Otello Martelli. Editor: Jolanda Benvenuti, Roland Gross. Cast: Ingrid Bergman, Mario Vitale, Renzo Cesana, Mario Sponza. 35mm, 105 min.

SUBWAY, 1985, Gaumont, 104 min. Director Luc Besson’s second film and first bona-fide hit is a delicious neo-noir, live action comic book, a hymn to the new wave rhythms of nocturnal street life and private romantic fantasies. Inhabitant of the Paris subway and wannabe rocker Fred (Christopher Lambert) falls for Helena (Isabelle Adjani) after first trying to blackmail her. A rogue’s gallery of colorful sub-urban dwellers make up Fred’s neighbors. With Richard Bohringer, Jean-Hugues Anglade. "Subway brings to mind Orson Welles' quip about the cinema being the greatest electric train set a boy could have." – Variety

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The director of a failing summer camp decides to invite campers from ten years ago for a free weekend event, hoping that he can trick them into fixing up the place and also get their families to provide them some financial support. The boys and girls return to the camp and play pranks on each other and try to score with the other campers and the staff.

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Personally, this is the definitive B-Movie. It's got bad acting, bad overdubs, bad filming, just plain out bad everything. But, more importantly, it's so bad it's funny! Really really funny! I was rolling on the ground laughing the first time I saw it.

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A Texas Ranger hunts for a hooded serial killer terrorizing the residents of a small town, set in 1946 Arkansas. Loosely based on a true story.

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This 1976 film tries to predict what American television will be like in the year 1985. Tunnelvision is America's first "uncensored and free" television network. Although wildly popular, it is also blamed for increased crime and unemployment. Christian A. Broder, president and founder of Tunnelvision, is called to defend his network in front of a Senate sub-committee. The sub-committee decides to view excerpts from a "typical" day of Tunnelvision broadcasting. What follows is a series of brief skits lampooning television, including cop shows, news broadcasts, situation comedies, and (of course) commercials.

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Bobby is a shy Los Angeles teenager who buys a sleek chevy van for himself to impress, pick up, and seduce various teenage girls to spruce up his dull life while trying to get money by drag racing other vans to finance operating it.

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WHITE LINE FEVER has the distinction of being the first contemporary studio film to focus on the theme of the independent trucker and his/her lifestyle (perhaps inspired by the TV series MOVIN' ON, which debuted a year earlier). Most others, before and since, have been little more than standard formula action-adventure/comedy flicks with the trucking theme a mere novelty, something to capitalize on the CB trend - as so many did in the 70's. Sure, WHITE LINE FEVER features its share of "big rig movie" cliches - fights, chases, crashes - set to appropriately sprightly Dukes of Hazard-ish banjo music - and of course the now-familiar independent-trucker-fights-corruption storyline itself. But the performances of Jan-Michael Vincent (who also did all his own stunts in the movie), Kay Lenz, Slim Pickens, L.Q. Jones and Sam Laws keep things believable and interesting; and, most importantly, the over-the-road sequences manage to convey something of the awesome solitude of the trucking lifestyle.

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It's a real 'mafia-action' classic from the early seventies and is gritty, well plotted and acted and has a very high body-count !
Our hero (or rather anti-hero), is a hit-man for the mafia, who proves his worth by rubbing-out half of a rival gang, whilst they were enjoying a private screening of some Scandinavian porn, launching grenades from the projection room- into the auditorium..

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Dr. Tsu is a brilliant surgeon with her own exotic island off the coast of Manila. Using her sexy, all-girl army of martial-arts experts, Tsu kidnaps some of the world's greatest athletes. She is able to transplant any body part, so she uses the athletes for spare parts to sell to the world's richest men. Mike Harber is a womanizing, wise-cracking insurance investigator for Lloyd's of London sent to Manila to investigate the disappearance of a jai-alai player, and becomes involved with Dr. Tsu's mad mission.

ZERO FOR CONDUCT (ZERO DE CONDUITE), 1933, Janus Films, 41 min. Dir. Jean Vigo. Although he only made two features and a pair of shorts before his tragic early death in 1934, French director Jean Vigo remains one of the guiding lights of French cinema. This, his first feature, shows why: at a repressive boarding school a group of students decide to revolt, leading to full-scale (and wildly surreal) anarchy. Suppressed for decades in France, ZERO FOR CONDUCT went on to inspire everyone from Truffaut (THE 400 BLOWS) to Lindsay Anderson (IF...).