a highly-opinionated selection of things happening around town, and sometimes out of town. this month's page here.
tue. apr. 1 black keys, jay reatard @ wiltern darjeeling limited, the royal tenenbaums @ new beverly body and soul 7 PM @ hammer museum todd glass 8:30 PM @ comedy death ray @ ucb theatre wed. apr. 2 jucifer @ knitting factory darjeeling limited, the royal tenenbaums @ new beverly crescent boogaloo band w/ dr. lonnie smith @ jazz bakery the battleship potemkin 8 PM @ silent movie theatre don carlos @ dub club @ echoplex serge gainsbourg night @ the bordello thu. apr. 3 network, the hospital @ new beverly crescent boogaloo band w/ dr. lonnie smith @ jazz bakery desert fury, dead reckoning @ egyptian theatre jezebel, the letter @ aero theatre thee out mods @ scene bar cinema of the paranormal: hello mr. splitfoot @ echo park film center ajay kapur's robotic musical instruments 5 PM @ machine gallery fri. apr. 4 network, the hospital @ new beverly cannibal holocaust MIDNIGHT @ nuart languis @ pehrspace fanny and alexander 7 PM @ ampas linwood dunn crescent boogaloo band w/ dr. lonnie smith @ jazz bakery mon cas, acto da primavera @ ucla film archive cornered, to the ends of the earth @ egyptian theatre the lady vanishes @ lacma the man who knew too much 9:20 PM @ lacma the last movie 7:30 10 PM @ silent movie theatre autechre @ echoplex steve mackay, etc @ experimental music festival @ zero-point space reservoir dogs MIDNIGHT @ fairfax regency theatre sat. apr. 5 network 3:05 7:30, the hospital 5:25 9:50 @ new beverly piranha MIDNIGHT @ new beverly les sans culottes @ satisfaction @ bordello the virgin spring 7 PM, through a glass darkly @ ampas linwood dunn beyond the forest 7 PM, what ever happened to baby jane? @ starlight studios crescent boogaloo band w/ dr. lonnie smith @ jazz bakery sorry wrong number, the strange love of martha ivers @ egyptian theatre spaghetti westerns @ cult cinema club @ spielberg theatre @ egyptian theatre all about eve, whatever happened to baby jane? @ aero theatre flight of the red balloon @ lacma the maltese falcon 1 PM @ silent movie theatre i know who killed me 10 PM @ silent movie theatre bipolar bear @ spaceland steve mackay, amps for christ @ experimental music festival @ zero-point space rza @ knitting factory the vampira show 8 PM @ steve allen theater art walk 11 AM - 6 PM @ the brewery sun. apr. 6 cries and whispers 7 PM, autumn sonata @ ampas linwood dunn the fastest gun alive 3:20 8 PM, cimarron 5:10 PM @ new beverly theatre wicked woman, the story of molly x @ egyptian theatre flight of the red balloon 7 PM @ silent movie theatre invincible kung-fu legs 9:30 PM @ silent movie theatre the basis of make-up ii 7 PM, miscellanea i, miscellanea ii @ filmforum @ egyptian theatre american werewolf in london 9 PM @ steve allen theater art walk 11 AM - 6 PM @ the brewery mon. apr. 7 smog @ ucla film archive schindler's houses 8 PM @ redcat the fastest gun alive, cimarron @ new beverly theatre foot village @ pehrspace todesspiel 7 PM @ goethe-institut los angeles tue. apr. 8 dalek @ casbah, SD i walked with a zombie 7 PM @ hammer museum devil's helper: the folk art films of phil chambliss 8 PM @ silent movie theatre living legends crew 7 PM FREE @ amoeba records wed. apr. 9 dalek @ henry fonda theater bed and sofa 8 PM @ silent movie theatre mondo cane, zulu @ new beverly theatre pukers @ the smell thu. apr. 10 an evening with albert maysles 7 PM @ hammer museum mondo cane, zulu @ new beverly theatre the man between, one way street @ egyptian theatre la ville louvre @ aero theatre goff in the desert FREE @ lacma mia doi todd @ the echo fri. apr. 11 the adventures of buckaroo banzai MIDNIGHT @ nuart hollywood boulevard, truck turner @ new beverly theatre hell's five hours, the night holds terror @ egyptian theatre band of outsiders, belphegor le fantome du louvre @ aero theatre bride of frankenstein @ lacma nightmare alley 9 PM @ lacma the living wake @ silent movie theatre trona 10 PM, the nest @ silent movie theatre scarface MIDNIGHT @ fairfax regency theatre sat. apr. 12 no or the vain glory of command 4:15 @ ucla film archive loos ornamental 7 PM @ ucla film archive schindler's houses 8:45 PM @ ucla film archive moon over burma 7 PM @ starlight studios gremlins two MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre hollywood boulevard, truck turner @ new beverly theatre stranger on the third floor, the face behind the mask @ egyptian theatre the red balloon 4 PM, white mane @ aero theatre across the bridge @ lacma night of the hunter 9:30 PM @ lacma the mask of dimitrios 1 PM @ silent movie theatre d-war 10:30 PM @ silent movie theatre here is always somewhere else 7 PM @ telic arts exchange dead ringers 8 PM FREE @ steve allen theater sun. apr. 13 douro faina fluvial 7 PM, aniki-bobo, a caca @ ucla film archive la roue 6 PM @ silent movie theatre the sadist, TBA @ new beverly theatre cry of the hunted, lure of the swamp @ egyptian theatre the ferus gallery a place to begin 3 PM @ aero theatre sullivan's banks 7 PM, miscellanea iii, maillart's bridges @ filmforum @ egyptian theatre mon. apr. 14 stars of the lid @ echoplex the sadist, TBA @ new beverly theatre tue. apr. 15 tamango 7 PM @ hammer museum the sadist, TBA @ new beverly theatre wed. apr. 16 blues & jazz voices 7 PM @ 7 dudley cinema jewish luck 8 PM @ silent movie theatre the secret invasion, tomb of ligeia @ new beverly theatre abraham's valley @ ucla film archive the searchers @ aero theatre zach galifianakis @ largo darker my love FREE @ charlie o's thu. apr. 17 the secret invasion, tomb of ligeia @ new beverly theatre tomorrow is another day, highway 301 @ egyptian theatre carnival night 8 PM @ silent movie theatre ema and the ghosts @ mr. t's bowl the fall 7 PM FREE @ hammer museum fri. apr. 18 wrong is right, TBA @ new beverly theatre shadow of a doubt 7 PM, lifeboat @ ampas samuel goldwyn theatre night has a thousand eyes, the red house @ egyptian theatre glengarry glen ross @ aero theatre the loved one 9:20 PM @ lacma bubba ho-tep 10 PM, garbanzo gas MIDNIGHT @ silent movie theatre rats, silver daggers, peter kolovos @ the smell jon brion @ largo bad dudes @ pehrspace helmet @ key club sat. apr. 19 wrong is right, TBA @ new beverly theatre o dia do desespero, i'm going home @ ucla film archive boomerang, count the hours @ egyptian theatre the spanish prisoner @ aero theatre marathon man @ lacma point blank 9:45 PM @ lacma the verdict 1 PM, three strangers @ silent movie theatre mr. lonely (preview screening) 7 PM @ silent movie theatre the boy who cried bitch 10:30 PM @ silent movie theatre mae shi @ spaceland jon brion @ largo scanners 8 PM @ steve allen theater sun. apr. 20 HEALTH, foot village @ the smell blood on satan's claw, horror express @ new beverly theatre the clay pigeon, nora prentiss @ egyptian theatre roman de gare, a man and a woman @ aero theatre the general 4 PM @ silent movie theatre millennium mambo 7 PM @ silent movie theatre fire dragon 9:30 PM @ silent movie theatre logan's run 9 PM @ steve allen theater mon. apr. 21 blood on satan's claw, horror express @ new beverly theatre patton oswalt @ largo tue. apr. 22 black orpheus 7 PM @ hammer museum underworld cinema: the life and work of j.x. williams 8 PM @ silent movie theatre movie orgy @ new beverly theatre wed. apr. 23 spiritualized @ lobero theatre, santa barbara happiness 8 PM @ silent movie theatre house of games @ aero theatre her space holiday @ troubadour the hal roach all-star festival @ hollywood heritage museum thu. apr. 24 standard operating procedure 7 PM @ hammer museum night and the city, woman in hiding @ egyptian theatre the dark backward, detroit rock city @ aero theatre jazzman 8 PM @ silent movie theatre bipolar bear @ scene bar fri. apr. 25 spiritualized @ 4th & b, san diego 2001 a space odyssey (70mm) @ ampas samuel goldwyn theatre gangster vip, the velvet hustler @ egyptian theatre night of the living dead MIDNIGHT @ egyptian theatre caddyshack, groundhog day @ aero theatre city lights 7:30 9:30 PM @ lacma loren cass @ silent movie theatre bad habits 10 PM, radiant MIDNIGHT @ silent movie theatre no age @ LA ukranian center jon brion @ largo sat. apr. 26 skylark 7 PM @ starlight studios festival of books @ ucla the howling MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre start the revolution without me 4 PM @ getty center my gun is my passport, glass johnny looks like a beast @ egyptian theatre back to the future, back to the future part ii @ aero theatre city lights 7:30 9:30 PM @ lacma david blaine above the below 7 PM, julien donkey-boy @ silent movie theatre TBA 10:30 PM @ silent movie theatre thee makeout party @ the smell jon brion @ largo here is always somewhere else 7 PM @ telic arts exchange videodrome 8 PM @ steve allen theater the okmoniks, thee cormans @ scene bar sun. apr. 27 festival of books @ ucla the weird lovemakers, roughneck @ egyptian theatre blonde venus @ aero theatre cafe lumiere 7 PM @ silent movie theatre license to steal 9:30 PM, naked killer @ silent movie theatre neil hamburger @ spaceland the haunting (1963) 9 PM @ steve allen theater tue. apr. 29 wholphin #6 8 PM @ silent movie theatre blackbeard the pirate 1 PM @ lacma wed. apr. 30 storm over asia 8 PM @ silent movie theatre the u.s. vs. john lennon 7 PM, leonard cohen i'm your man FREE @ ampas linwood dunn foot village @ the smell the woggles @ safari sam's fri. may 2 blade runner final cut MIDNIGHT @ fairfax regency theatre sat. may 3 the ugly beats @ satisfaction @ bordello the woggles @ tiki invasion @ mission tiki drive-in burnt offerings MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre the fly (1986) 8 PM @ steve allen theater sun. may 4 westworld 9 PM @ steve allen theater sat. may 10 the remarkable andrew 7 PM, blaze of noon @ starlight studios naked lunch 8 PM @ steve allen theater sun. may 11 upsilon acrux, bad dudes @ the smell the incredible shrinking man 9 PM @ steve allen theater mon. may 12 fargo 7 PM @ ampas samuel goldwyn theatre tue. may 13 syd garon & sam spiegel @ flux screening series @ hammer museum fri. may 16 mia doi todd @ mccabe's sat. may 17 dirtbombs @ troubadour crash (1996) 8 PM @ steve allen theater sun. may 18 the company of wolves 9 PM @ steve allen theater mon. may 19 l.a. confidential 7 PM @ ampas samuel goldwyn theatre tue. may 20 clinic @ troubadour wed. may 21 bruce bickford: prometheus' garden @ 7 dudley cinema thu. may 22 bad dudes @ the smell radar bros. @ knitting factory sat. may 24 bad dudes, bipolar bear @ the smell this is the night 7 PM, frankenstein (1931) @ starlight studios existenz 8 PM @ steve allen theater sun. may 25 invasion of the body snatchers (1956) 9 PM @ steve allen theater tue. may 27 gary panter, matt groening @ skylight books wed. may 28 gentlemen prefer blondes @ last remaining seats @ los angeles theatre sat. may 31 parable 4 PM, simon of the desert @ getty center spider 8 PM @ steve allen theater sun. jun. 1 soylent green 9 PM @ steve allen theater wed. jun. 4 louis ck @ largo mildred pierce @ last remaining seats @ million dollar theatre fri. jun. 6 kevin mcdonald @ largo sun. jun. 8 forbidden planet 9 PM @ steve allen theater mon. jun. 9 jon brion @ largo wed. jun. 11 goldfinger @ last remaining seats @ orpheum theatre fri. jun. 13 venetian snares @ knitting factory sun. jun. 15 clash of the titans 9 PM @ steve allen theater wed. jun. 18 young frankenstein @ last remaining seats @ los angeles theatre WHAT IT IS: ABRAHAM'S VALLEY (VALE ABRAÃO) (1993, Portugal/France/Switzerland) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira "In Abraham's Valley… things have happened… that belong to a world of dreams, the most hypocritical world there is." Fitting words to open Oliveira's sensuous, dream-like epic based on a novel itself inspired by a novel about the perils of dreaming (Agustina Bessa-Luís's Portuguese adaptation of Madame Bovary). Ema is a child of the provincial haute-bourgeoisie, so beautiful that the mayor of her town threatens to throw her in jail because of the numerous traffic accidents she causes each time she appears on her veranda. When she marries an older doctor, Ema's exuberance abruptly shrinks to a dark inner claustrophobia, then reemerges as a ravenous quest for erotic fulfillment. Beauty suffuses Abraham's Valley, from its Vermeer-like light and the voluptuousness of its actors and landscape to the lyricism of its voiceover narration. But even as Oliveira seduces, he dismantles the fiction, for Ema defiantly asserts, "I am not the Little Bovary! Nor am I Flaubert." Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: Leonor Silveira, Cécile Sanz de Alba, Luís Miguel Cintra. Presented in Portuguese dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 203 min. A CAÇA (THE HUNT) (1963, Portugal) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira In Oliveira's most Buñuelian film, two boys on a hunt are accompanied by strange omens: a fox savagely tears into a chicken, one boy falls into quicksand. Portuguese censors demanded changes to Oliveira's bleak ending. The director obliged but in 1988 restored his original ending with a twist: He retained the censor-approved, happy ending as a coda, underscoring the original film's ironically dark and pessimistic vision. Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: António Rodrigues Sousa, João Rocha Almeida. Presented in Portuguese dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, (1988 Restored Version), 20 min. Across the Bridge 1957/b&w/103 min. | Scr: Guy Elmes, Denis Freeman; dir: Ken Annakin; w/ Rod Steiger Special Guest: Ken Annakin An imperious, mean-spirited German financier wanted for murder flees into Mexico where he is caught in an existential trap. Based on the novel by Graham Greene, Annakin's film is rich in ironic twists and features a towering performance by Steiger. "This overlooked black-and-white thriller provides a compelling psychological study of a fugitive's greed and his love for a dog that gradually becomes his conscience . . . and that ultimately seals his destiny."— Brit Movie. ACTO DA PRIMAVERA (RITE OF SPRING) (1962, Portugal) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira Considered by many to be Oliveira's first fully mature work, this documentary reenacts a yearly passion play in the small village of Curalha. As achingly stark and deeply felt as Pasolini's The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, Oliveira's film also raises provocative questions about the boundaries between the secular and sacred, documentary and fiction, asking if it is ever possible to precisely delineate between a performance in a play and the ongoing performance of being human. For instance, does restaging the passion play for the camera in the same location with the same actors make Oliveira's film fictional? The director complicates things even more when he self-referentially films his own camera crew, then crosscuts scenes of war, particularly the war in Vietnam, with shots of the final moments of Christ's agony, or rather the final moments in the performance of agony by the non-professional actor playing the man whom many believe to represent God. Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: Nicolau Nunes da Silva, Ermelinda Pires, Maria Madalena. Presented in Portuguese dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 90 min. ANIKI-BÓBÓ (1942, Portugal) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira Two schoolboys equally enamored of a fetching classmate are at the center of this simple, but never saccharine, tale of young love, rivalry and a special doll in a window. Picking up on its darker undertones, many critics also read it as a critique of the dictatorial Salazar regime. Novelist and frequent collaborator Agustina Bessa-Luís described it as one of Oliveira's "most perfect films." Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: Nascimento Fernandes, Fernanda Matos, Horácio Silva. Presented in Portuguese dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 70 min. Autumn Sonata (1978) In her last feature film appearance, Ingrid Bergman stars as a concert pianist reunited with her daughter (Liv Ullmann) after a seven-year estrangement; the tension between them is underscored by flashbacks from their earlier lives. 93 mins. Bad Habits Leo Tolstoy’s famous opener – “Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way” – is fleshed out in director/cowriter Simón Bross’ brilliant debut film, the chronicle of an extended clan that hungers for meaning in a trying world. Set in a rain-drenched Mexico City, this beautifully shot, heartrending story focuses on all the things we hate about ourselves. Yet Bross and co-writer Ernesto Anaya are loath to discriminate and explore seemingly every vice that consumes the modern world. The interconnected storylines, many focusing on food, unite the excellent cast in a web of abuse, adultery and anorexia. Amid the lying, cheating and worse, Bad Habits makes us realize that, despite how far afield that may take us, we are at the center of all of our problems. Can each of us change ourselves enough to make the whole world better, or will we be washed away by the pouring rain? Showed at: CineVegas 2007 (U.S. Premiere in La Proxima Ola section) Dir. Simón Bross, 2006, 35mm, 98 min. The Basis Of Make-Up II (Photography and Beyond 4) (1995-2000, 35mm, color, 48 min.) Featured are are sixty-nine of Heinz Emigholz’s illustrated notebooks from 1983 to 1996, three sketch books from the 80s and 90s, and cinematic studies of his exhibition “Der Untergang der Bismarck” at the Zwinger Gallery, Berlin 1988, a castle moat in Riva, Italy 1997, a casting of Aguste Rodin’s “The Gates of Hell” in front of the Kunsthaus in Zürich 1988, an olive grove near Norma in Italy 1995, a magnolia tree in Basle 1996, burnt meat at Cabo de Creus in the Pyrenees 1988, an i9ntersection in Owatonna, Minnesota 1995, and a house underpass in Giesshübelstrasse, Zurich 1996. In addition, there are 184 drawings from the series “Die Basis des Make-Up” as positives and negatives. The Basis of Make-Up is “the center around which my feature films revolve. I imagine them as an intermezzo between the long films, the data bank as a breather.” (Heinz Emigholz). The Battleship Potemkin Sergei Eisenstein’s legendary film is based on the violent 1905 riot at the Potemkin harbor by sailors, which spread onto the streets of Odessa as troops opened fire on unarmed civilians. The film is divided into five episodes—Men and Maggots, Drama at the Harbor, A Dead Man Calls for Justice, The Odessa Staircase, and the Rendezvous with a Squadron. Despite its reputation as a cold masterpiece of revolutionary filmmaking, it is a wonderful combination of theory and practice as Eisenstein experiments with the emotional effects of “montage.” His brilliant editing allows audiences to experience the transition between the state of inaction and action as a visceral and explosive transformation. Dir. Sergei Eisenstein, 1925, 35mm, 80 min. Bed and Sofa Popular Soviet filmmakers working after the Bolshevik Revolution often used the medium to glorify the masses. However, Abram Room’s film, Bed and Sofa, stars just three people. During hard times, Vlodya is forced to board with his old war comrade, Kolya, and his wife Liuda. At first wary of one another, sparks begin to fly between Vlodya and Liuda, leading to tensions in the household of three and a shifting of allegiances between the various couplings. What makes this film unique besides the naturalistic performances and Room’s magisterial direction is its frank sexuality. Outrageous and daring, the film was banned in the United Kingdom but earned a following in private film clubs. Dir. Abram Room, 1927, 35mm, 74 min. BELPHEGOR, LE FANTOME DU LOUVRE, 2001, Canal Plus, 97 min. When a collection of rare artifacts is brought to the Louvre for examination, a ghostly spirit escapes from the archaeological find and enters the museum's electrical system. Before long, the evil spirit Belphegor is wreaking havoc in the famous museum in director Jean-Paul Salome's fantasy film, which stars Sophie Marceau, Michel Serrault and Julie Christie. Blackbeard, The Pirate 1952/color/99 min.| Scr: Alan LeMay; dir: Raoul Walsh; w/ Robert Newton, Linda Darnell, William Bendix A kidnapped beauty gets caught between feuding pirates. Black Orpheus (1959) Winner of the 1960 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, this ancient love story is based on the musical Orfeu da Conceição, by Vinícius de Moraes. With a celebrated bossa-nova soundtrack by Antonio Carlos Jobim and Luis Bonfá, the film re-imagines the Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice in the slums of Rio de Janeiro during Carnivale. DIR. MARCEL CAMUS RUNNING TIME: 100 MINUTES. BLONDE VENUS, 1932, Universal, 93 min. Dir. Josef Von Sternberg. Marlene Dietrich is Helen, a former nightclub entertainer married to scientist Herbert Marshall. Their idyllic family life is shattered when he becomes disabled and she must return to the stage to support him and their son (Dickie Moore). Enter millionaire Cary Grant, a man who will lavish any amount of money on what (or who) he wants. Dietrich is luminously hypnotic here, whether swimming nude or singing "Hot Voodoo" in a gorilla suit! One of the best of the Von Sternberg/Dietrich collaborations, milking every bit of charisma from its two gorgeous stars and miraculously steering the high-voltage melodramatics into poignant revelation by the last frame. "The Paris cabaret in Blonde Venus, A bizarre collaboration between Sternberg and designer Wiard Ihnen... the baroque extravagance of her(Marlene Dietrich’s) number... a figure in glittering white tailcoat reviewing with Lesbian arrogance a group of veiled beauties, strolling as she sings among leaning gothic arches, crouching monsters and nude female torsos." – John Baxter, The Cinema of Josef von Sternberg. Discussion following with production designers Bob Boyle, J. Michael Riva and other guests. BLOOD ON SATAN'S CLAW (from IMDB) Horror thriller set in 17th century England about the children of a village slowly converting into a coven of devil worshipers. BLUES & JAZZ VOICES - Rare perfomance films of Bessie Smith, Howlin' Wolf, Billie Holiday, Louis Jordan, Big Mama Thornton, Son House, Anita O'Day, Mel Torme, Ella Fitzgerald and Fats Waller. Testify to the lasting power of America's music backbone. Body and Soul (1925) Paul Robeson makes his screen debut in this silent masterwork by black independent director Oscar Micheaux. Set in a small Southern town, the film was a direct condemnation of the power of the clergy, with Robeson playing dual roles as a mildmannered inventor and a crooked ex-convict who impersonates the town’s preacher. DIR. OSCAR MICHEAUX RUNNING TIME: 102 MINUTES. BOOMERANG!, 1947, 20th Century Fox, 88 min. District Attorney Dana Andrews thinks he’s got an open-and-shut case on a beloved Catholic priest’s murder, with all but certain guilt hanging over the head of down-on-his-luck ex-GI Arthur Kennedy. But when Andrews looks more closely at the evidence, he begins to have his doubts. Tough, honest cop Lee J. Cobb, as well as public opinion and the town’s good-ol’- boy political machine, want a guaranteed guilty verdict. Andrews soon learns that not only his job but his family’s reputation will be dragged through the mud if he doesn’t ram through the expected conviction. Director Elia Kazan’s chops with actors were already expert in this early stage of his career, and he coaxes fierce performances from the whole cast, including Ed Begley (ODDS AGAINST TOMORROW) as a frantic real estate developer with a huge stake in the next mayoral election. With Karl Malden, Sam Levene, Jane Wyatt. "BOOMERANG! is a gripping, real-life melodrama, told in semi-documentary style. Lensing was done on location at Stamford, Conn. the locale adding to realism. Based on a still unsolved murder case in Bridgeport, Conn. plot is backed up with strong cast." – Variety NOT ON DVD The Boy Who Cried Bitch: The Adolescent Years A bizarrely confessional, privately-funded Oedipal blowout, The Boy Who Cried Bitch: the Adolescent Years teems with neurosis in front of and behind the camera. The title promises a boy crying bitch, and boy does he, over and over again like a perverse mantra, at his beleaguered, mousy mother. He also calls her "irresponsible" and "stupid" a lot--this coming from a guy who drugs himself silly, develops a Manson haircut, and subsidizes his felonies from Mom's pocketbook. Written by Catherine May Levin as a mother's worst "bad seed" nightmare, yet apparently directed as a revenge fantasy by her own son Matthew, The Boy Who Cried Bitch is ultimately a melodramatic freefall into maternal hysteria. Is it an accident that the horrifying familial dynamics were mapped out with the precise, dialectic simplicity of a Fassbinder film? Who knows? Who cares? We are sick people for thinking this is a good time. Not for civilians. Dir. Matthew Levin II, 2007, 35mm, 99 min. The Bride of Frankenstein 1935/b&w/75 min. | Scr: William Hurlbut; dir: James Whale; w/ Boris Karloff, Colin Clive, Elsa Lanchester Whale shows his affinity for outsiders and freaks in his monster movie sequel that enhances a melancholy atmosphere with striking visuals, campy humor, and a thunderbolt hairdo. "The best of the Frankenstein movies—a sly, subversive work that smuggled shocking material past the censors by disguising it in the trappings of horror. Some movies age; others ripen. Seen today, Whale's masterpiece is more surprising than when it was made because today's audiences are more alert to its buried hints of homosexuality, necrophilia and sacrilege. "—Roger Ebert. BRUCE BICKFORD: PROMETHEUS’ GARDEN ('88, 28m) Zappa animator Bickford utilizes clay puppets and sets, cutouts, replacement series, aluminum foil, “strato-cut” slices, and molten wax to create phantasmagorical version of the Greek Prometheus myth - an immortal who created the first mortals out of clay. He also stole fire from Zeus and gave it to the people. Zeus exacted revenge by ordering Prometheus chained to a mountain where an eagle ate Prometheus’ liver. Since he was immortal, Prometheus’ liver grew back after each daily visit by the eagle, forcing Prometheus to face horrific pain for eternity. Bickford’s incorporation of this myth into his unforgetable animated film includes appearances by Vikings, cowboys, Vietnam War era mercenaries, imps, elves, fairies, and countless other historical and mythological creatures. Also: LUCK OF A FOGHORN ('08, 30m) Brett Ingram won many awards with his remarkable Bickford doc MONSTER ROAD. Here is more amazing "behind the scenes and into the mind of Bickford" footage. The title of the featurette originates from a surreal day dream Bickford had while hovering near death with pneumonia in hospital. With Laird Dixon's hauntingly beautiful original score. Plus sneak peek of a new Ingram "work-in-progress." BURNT OFFERINGS (from IMDB) Haunted house chiller from Dan Curtis has Oliver Reed and Karen Black as summer caretakers moving into gothic house with their young son. The catch? The house rejuvenates a part of itself with each death that occurs on its premises. Café Lumiere Minimalist and experimental in its approach to narrative, Cafe Lumiere showcases Hou's astute powers of observation, his uncanny knack for transforming the quotidian into indelibly poetic cinema. An elliptical chronicle of Yoko, a headstrong, pregnant writer, Lumiere uses moments of silence to reverently skew the influential repertoire of director Yasujiro Ozu. Yoko's obsession with the life of a Taiwanese classical composer connects her with a sympathetic bookstore owner (Tadanobu Asano), who shares her fascination with the recording of subway trains. Among the film's transfixing elements is the measured and repetitive sound of trains that resonates with the characters. The aural detail is an elegant bridge between Tokyo as a spectral luminary of global drift that weds the organic with the cybernetic- the symbiotic network of their hearts' yearnings. Dir. Hou Hsiao-Hsien, 2003, 35mm, 103 min. Carnival Night (Karnavalnaya Noch) Some of the first cracks in the brick wall of Stalinist culture were caused by this marvelously witty comedy that transformed its debut director, Eldar Ryazanov, and its young star Lyudmila Gurchenko into overnight celebrities. New Year’s Eve is fast approaching and the employees of the Economics Institute are planning a big night, with lots of singing, dancing and holiday cheer. But it’s announced that the new director, Comrade Ogurtsov (Igor Ilyinsky), will be arriving shortly. Ogurtsov has his own ideas about how to ring in the New Year: reading end-of-the-year reports, a few chamber pieces, maybe a speech out of Chekhov…but the kids really just want to rock and roll. Still a great favorite in Russia, where it’s always broadcast on television during the holiday season, Carnival Night is a delicious send-up of bureaucracy, as well as a genuine celebration of people’s power. Dir. Eldar Ryazanov, 1956, 35mm, 78 min. Cimarron The first Western to win an Oscar for Best Picture (the second being Eastwood's Unforgiven) stars Richard Dix and Irene Dunne. Based on the popular novel by Edna Ferber, it chronicles the life of a homesteading family from the Oklahoma Land Rush until 1915. Oscar also went for screenplay. With Estelle Taylor and Nance O'Neil. CINEMA OF THE PARANORMAL: HELLO, MR. SPLITFOOT Hello, Mr. Splitfoot is a cinematic séance commemorating the 160th anniversary of the Fox sisters’ first contact with the otherside, an event that sparked the birth of Spiritualism in America. This program of contemporary and historic films offers an eerie exploration of the borderland between the living and the dead, probing psychic and paranormal phenomena. Come and see the spirits, journey to the astral plane, or enter an ecstatic state! Films by John Cannizzaro, Brook Hinton, Catherine Hollander, Chelsea Spear, and Debra Stratman. Curated by Andrea Richards. FILMMAKERS AND CURATOR IN ATTENDANCE! City Lights 1931/b&w/87 min./silent with music | Scr/dir: Charles Chaplin; w/ Charles Chaplin, Virginia Cherrill | New 35mm print! In this tender comedy/drama, the Tramp is mistaken for a millionaire when he tries to help a blind flower vendor regain her sight. Despite three years of personal and artistic setbacks, Chaplin's innovative blend of slapstick and pathos resulted in his most emotionally compelling film. "At the end of City Lights, the blind girl who has regained her sight thanks to the Tramp, sees him for the first time . . . . The camera just exchanges a few quiet close-ups of the emotions that shift and intensify in each face. It is enough to shrivel the heart and it is the greatest piece of acting and highest moment in movies."—James Agee. THE CLAY PIGEON, 1949, Warner Bros., 63 min. Amnesia, treason and murder are nicely dished up at a breakneck pace by ace director Richard Fleischer (THE NARROW MARGIN). One of the most striking of the RKO "B" noirs stars the real-life husband and wife duo of Bill Williams and Barbara Hale along with Richard Loo and Martha Hyer, with an original screenplay by the great Carl Foreman (HIGH NOON). Don’t miss this seldom-screened programmer that combines classic noir with WWII propaganda amid period L.A. location photography. Williams portrays a returning, memory-challenged POW on the run, charged with being a turncoat. Co-star Richard Quine, who plays another POW survivor, became a director in the 1950s, making such films as noir PUSHOVER and comedies BELL, BOOK AND CANDLE and HOW TO MURDER YOUR WIFE. NOT ON DVD THE COMPANY OF WOLVES Neil Jordan turns the story of Little Red Riding Hood into a highly stylized werewolf film, boasting magnificent sets and lush cinematography. The sexual subtext of the fairy tale is brought to the surface, as Granny (played with wonderfully wicked humor by Angela Lansbury) warns young Rosaleen (Sarah Patterson) about the beasts that lurk within men. Also starring Stephen Rea and David Warner. "A horror film as literate as it is visionary, it's great fun--and that's not a cheap thrill" (J. Hoberman, The Village Voice). CORNERED, 1945, Warner Bros., 102 min. Completing the thespian metamorphosis from song-and-dance man to film noir protagonist that began with MURDER, MY SWEET, Dick Powell stars in this post-war tale of a demobilized Canadian flyer seeking the collaborator who killed his French wife. Traversing a blind alley from Paris to Buenos Aires while hot on the trail of the elusive Marcel Jamac (Luther Adler), Powell contends with the sinister bulk of Walter Slezak, and the elegant cool of Morris Carnovsky while being alternately soothed by Micheline Cheirel and menaced by Jack La Rue. Directed and produced by Edward Dmytryk and Adrian Scott before both men were frog-marched to Washington and blacklisted, this rarely seen picture remains a visual feast for noir aficionados. NOT ON DVD COUNT THE HOURS, 1953, Warner Bros., 76 min. Director Don Siegel (DIRTY HARRY) and supreme noir cinematographer John Alton conjure up a nightmarish flight through the justice system as a migrant farm worker (John Craven) is accused of the double murder of his employers. SHADOW OF A DOUBT stars Teresa Wright and Macdonald Carey reunite – here Wright plays the worker’s wife who convinces skeptical defense attorney Carey that her husband is really innocent. But with Carey unable to prove his case, the accused gets an appointment with the executioner. Carey continues to try to find the real killer as the clock counts down, losing his fair-weather fiancee and his community standing in the process. Hope glimmers when Carey gets wind of a lead, but proving that a scapegoat is unjustly accused is never easy -- and Carey and Wright are beset with more confounding twists as time runs out. Look for Jack Elam as a memorably reptilian slimeball. NOT ON DVD Cries and Whispers (1972) This intense character study explores the dynamics among three sisters, one of whom is dying of cancer, and the servant who looks after her. 88 mins. CRY OF THE HUNTED, 1953, Warner Bros., 80 min. GUN CRAZY director Joseph H. Lewis follows obsessed prison security man Barry Sullivan (TENSION; THE GANGSTER), abetted by evil-tempered deputy William Conrad, as they plunge into the Louisiana bayou hunting fugitive Vittorio Gassman. Although neither can admit it, Sullivan and Gassman share many of the same inflexible ideas about personal pride and honor, and their fiery personalities suck them ever deeper into a vortex of brutality. With Polly Bergen (CAPE FEAR) as Sullivan’s long-suffering wife. "…an engagingly taut affair, its various visual flourishes climaxing in a characteristically atmospheric swamp shoot-out…highly enjoyable." –Time Out London NOT ON DVD THE DARK BACKWARD, 1991, New Line Cinema, 101 min. Dir. Adam Rifkin. Judd Nelson and Bill Paxton head up an eclectic cast (it also includes Rob Lowe, Wayne Newton, and James Caan) in this offbeat cult favorite. Nelson is Marty Malt, a garbage man who dreams of becoming the next Jay Leno; the only problem is, his very strange buddy (Paxton) is the only person who finds his jokes funny. When Marty grows an arm on his back, however, the new appendage works its way into his act and brings him a strange sort of comic success. Discussion in between films with director Adam Rifkin and Bill Paxton. DAVID BLAINE: ABOVE THE BELOW Korine’s surreal 2003 documentary, commissioned by the BBC to document David Blaine’s endurance stunt, in which the “magician” spent 44 days in a box suspended over the River Thames. Dir. Harmony Korine, 2003 DEAD RECKONING, 1947, Sony Repertory, 100 min. Dir. John Cromwell (CAGED). "He Doesn't Trust Anyone…especially Women!" Colonel Humphrey Bogart knows something’s fishy when his best friend, Sergeant Johnny Drake (William Prince), jumps off his train rather than continue on his way to receive a much-publicized Medal of Honor. Bogart follows his trail to southern Gulf City, only to find his pal burnt to a crisp on a morgue slab. Things can only go downhill from there. Before long, other bodies pile up, and Bogart does some fancy footwork to keep out of a murder frame. The twisted clues lead to Johnny’s bewitching sweetheart Cora (Lizabeth Scott), smooth casino operator Martinelli (Morris Carnovsky) and sadistic thug Krause (Marvin Miller). A passel of contradictory stories point to a number of guilty parties, and Bogart has to think fast to figure out who he can trust -- or he may end up like his dead buddy. "Excellent hardboiled shenanigans…highly enjoyable…" –Time Out: New York DESERT FURY, 1947, Universal, 96 min. Dir. Lewis Allen. Lizabeth Scott (PITFALL) in Technicolor glory -- swirls of yellow hair, emerald eyes, fire-engine red lips -- is truly something to behold, but she’s only one of the over-the-top treats in this very strange crime drama. Mary Astor (THE MALTESE FALCON) seems a bit too enamored of her own daughter (Liz), Wendell Corey is murderously miffed at being tossed aside by partner-in-crime John Hodiak, and beefcake lawman Burt Lancaster seems oblivious to the mix-and-match sexuality surging around him. DESERT FURY is absolutely saturated -- incredibly lush colors, fast and furious dialogue dripping with innuendo, double entendres, dark secrets, outraged face-slappings, overwrought Miklos Rozsa violins. This is Hollywood at its most gloriously berserk. NOT ON DVD Devil’s Helper: The Folk Art Films of Phil Chambliss “An Arkansas auteur... imagine if Fellini had lived in a trailer in Arkansas instead of Rome.” - The London Times “Phil is simply a person who needs to create. He could have just as likely picked up a knife and whittled a wooden pig, or painted the Rapture on the side of a barn. Instead, he sat in the guard shack at the gravel pit every night, writing and planning his movies." - Dub Cornett, Oxford American Phil Chambliss is America’s first folk-art filmmaker. He's lived his entire life in Calhoun County, Arkansas. He never went to film school or college, never took a class or read a book on filmmaking. The films he managed to see – Sergio Leone’s For a Few Dollars More, the entire Peyton Place television special, and a particular episode of The Rifleman in which Lee Van Cleef plays Johnny Drago – led him to take the 95 bucks his then-wife had saved for a new icebox, and spend it instead on a movie camera. With camera in tow, he wrangled some friends into acting, and went on to create a body of work that includes dozens of bizarre, brilliant, idiosyncratic films, shot over the course of several decades. Phil's films are a revelation, full of unexpected humor, complex social commentary, and a strong, almost suspended, sense of time and place. There is only one Phil Chambliss, and The Cinefamily is very proud to present the first Los Angeles presentation of his singular work. Phil Chambliss will be in attendance for a Q&A. Tickets - $12/ $8 for members DOURO, FAINA FLUVIAL (LABOR ON THE DOURO) (1931, Portugal) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira At the age of 21, Oliveira borrowed money from his father to make his first film. Inspired by Walter Ruttmann and Dziga Vertov, Oliveira employed the vertiginous angles and oppositional aesthetics of modernist cinema to depict the lives of workers on the Douro River in his hometown of Porto. Oliveira's fiercely unsentimental vision enraged many Portuguese critics, but won him notable foreign admirers, including Luigi Pirandello. with Portuguese subtitles. 35mm, silent, w/ music track, 21 min. D-War “Some of the most ambitious crap I've ever seen.” —Marc Savlov, Austin Chronicle Reportedly the most expensive South Korean film ever made (its budget is rumored at $70 million), D-War will probably best be remembered for its breathtakingly silly but satisfying CGI tableaux of lizards and fire-breathing dragons wreaking havoc on the City of Angels. With nearly 8 years in development, it’s remarkable how thoroughly D-War plunders the current sci-fi/fantasy bag o’ tricks. Equal parts Transformers, The Matrix, Nightwatch and Lord of the Rings, the film begins with a head-spinning 20 minutes of exposition (including flashbacks within flashbacks!) delivered by a shapeshifting, levitating Robert Forster. Turns out that a “chosen” hero TV reporter, his black sidekick and a bland gym bunny are the only people standing in the way of an army of evil reptiles led by a menacing Rutger Hauer wannabe. Though it was a huge hit in Korea, D-War’s emergence in American cineplexes puzzled those audience members who hadn’t already arrived prepared for its cheesy, irony-free script, wooden acting, and incomprehensible plot. Don’t make the same mistake. Come prepared, people. Dir. Shim Hyung-rae, 2007, 35mm, 90 min. An Evening with Albert Maysles One of America’s foremost non-fiction filmmakers, Albert Maysles who along with his brother David (1932–1987) is recognized as a pioneer of “direct cinema,” the distinctly American version of French “cinema verité.” Their seminal early films Salesman (1968), Gimme Shelter (1970), and Grey Gardens (1976) became cult classics and are still finding new rapturous audiences. On the occasion of the publication of A Maysles Scrapbook: Photographs/Cinemagraphs/Documents, Maysles screens selections from filmed portraits of Orson Welles, Marlon Brando, and Truman Capote, and takes audience questions. THE FACE BEHIND THE MASK, 1941, Sony Repertory, 69 min. Dir. Robert Florey. "What fiendish fury turns man into monster?" Peter Lorre gives one of his most affecting performances as an immigrant watchmaker, horribly disfigured in a fire, whose despair and alienation lead him into a life of crime. A friendship with a young blind woman (Evelyn Keyes) offers him a shot at love and redemption. But … this is a noir film festival. An amazing blend of brutally efficient pulp theatrics and genuine pathos makes this one of Lorre's most unforgettable films. Presented in a brand-new 35mm print courtesy of Sony Repertory. NOT ON DVD The Fall Award-winning director Tarsem (The Cell) creates a moving and seamless blending of day to day life in a 1915 Los Angeles hospital with a visually sumptuous fantasy world of exotic bandits, evil tyrants, dream-like palaces and breathtaking landscapes. Shot on location in 18 countries around the world, The Fall stars Golden Globe nominated actor Lee Pace (Pushing Daisies and Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day,) and Justine Waddell (Mansfield Park, Chaos) and features a breakthrough performance by first-time Romanian child actress Catinca Untaru. Followed by a Q & A with director Tarsem. Fanny & Alexander (1982) Set in turn-of-the-century Sweden, this haunting film chronicles several seasons in the life of the Ekdahl family, as seen through the eyes of a ten-year-old boy. 188 mins. THE FASTEST GUN ALIVE (from IMDB) Whenever it becomes known how good he is with guns, ex-gunman George and his wife Dora have to flee the town, in fear of all the gunmen who might want to challenge him. Unfortunately he again spills his secret when he's drunk. All citizens swear to keep his secret and support him to give up his guns forever -- but a boy tells the story to a gang of wanted criminals. Their leader threatens to burn down the whole town, if he doesn't duel him. THE FERUS GALLERY: A PLACE TO BEGIN Part of Los Angeles Art Weekend, a new visual art festival highlighting the city’s vast array of creative talent, this program is hosted by Kristine McKenna, widely published art critic and journalist for the Los Angeles Times, Artforum, The New York Times, Artnews, Vanity Fair, The Washington Post and Rolling Stone Magazine. Andy Warhol’s "Tarzan and Jane Regained...Sort of" (1963, Andy Warhol Museum) and other short films by artists will be shown. Discussion to follow with Kristine McKenna and various artists to be announced. Fire Dragon Yuen Woo-Ping is best known to Western audiences as the action choreographer for The Matrix and Ang Lee’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, but his origins are deeply steeped in classic Hong Kong cinema. He was the guiding talent behind Jackie Chan's breakthrough movies, and responsible for star-studded kung fu classics like Tai Chi Master and Iron Monkey. In 1994, he was hired to direct Taiwanese superstar Brigitte Lin Ching-Hsia, in this martial arts gem which was to be her final feature before retiring. Lin is the title character, an assassin whose ultimate aim is the overthrow the emperor, but begins to question her allegiances to the deadly prince who wants to usurp his reign. What ensues is a non-stop barrage of martial arts mayhem that one can only expect from this dynamite combination of director and star. For newcomers to the films of Yuen Woo-Ping and Brigitte Lin, Fire Dragon is a near flawless introduction. Dir. Yuen Woo-Ping, 1994, 35mm, 90min. Flight of the Red Balloon 2007/color/113 min. | Scr: Hou Hsiao Hsien, François Margolin; dir: Hou Hsiao Hsien; w/ Juliette Binoche, Simon Ieanu, Song Fang Commissioned by the Musée d'Orsay, Taiwanese master Hou Hsiao Hsien's first French-language film stars Juliette Binoche, in "perhaps the best and certainly the most eccentric performance of her career" (Dennis Lim) , as a single mother so absorbed in her work as a puppeteer that she hires a young film student to help care for her seven-year old son. Though partly inspired by Albert Lamorisse's 1956 short Le ballon rouge, Hou's film is an entirely original and tender reimagining infused with the lyrical humanism and casual majesty of his weightless camerawork. "A quiet, unassuming and flawless tribute to Paris, to the spirit of childhood and to the ability of art to compensate for some of the painful imperfections of life." - A.O. Scott, The New York Times GANGSTER VIP (BURAI YORI – DAI KANBU), 1968, Nikkatsu, 93 min. Ex-gangster Goro Fujita was the poet laureate of real-life yakuza, penning many fictional as well as reality-based tomes. Ace Nikkatsu helmsman Toshio Masuda directs this first installment of a six-film series based on Fujita’s autobiography, Hoodlum (Burai). Tetsuya Watari (GRAVEYARD OF HONOR) is the young Goro, born into poverty, seeing his little sister and hooker mother die of disease while still a child. All grown up, Goro is called to a bar to defend his boss, but finds that his friend (Kyosuke Machida) from reform school is the assailant. Wounding Machida with his knife lands him in stir; several years later when he’s released, he’s catapulted back into a mob war with unprincipled new boss on the block, Yoshiro Aoki. Masuda was renowned as one of the more serious of Nikkatsu’s action directors, and here he elicits superb performances from all involved, including naive young heartthrob Chieko Matsubara (BLACK TIGHT KILLERS) who unwisely falls for our antihero. Moodily romantic, yet saturated with an uncompromisingly bleak, noirish worldview, Masuda keeps a perfect balance between the more traditional "honorable" type of yakuza saga and the burgeoning craze for more realistic, true-life accounts of gangland. A must-see! In Japanese with English subtitles. Garbanzo Gas Two guys stuck in a lavish motel room are broke, desperate, and slowly going insane. After watching a kangaroo fight on TV, they make a pact to kill themselves at checkout time. Meanwhile, a menopausal cow gets a slaughterhouse reprieve and a vacation to the same lavish motel. Elsewhere, a geriatric killer is on the loose and getting his instructions from an orthopedic shoe. This scenario is a hilarious, disturbing, homemade soap opera laced with weird and filthy songs created by mastermind Giuseppe Andrews. You may know Giuseppe from Cabin Fever and Detroit Rock City, but it’s his own oeuvre that sets him apart: He lives, unironically, in a trailer park in Ventura, Calif., where he casts neighbors like lead actor Walt Dongo and regular player Vietnam Ron (the menopausal cow) to act out his gutter art on a handheld camera. You may find other filmmakers who are just as indie, but few as truly DIY and madly original. Showed at: CineVegas 2007 (World Premiere) Dir. Giuseppe Andrews, 2006, DVD, 75 min. The General Based on a true--and truly crazy--Civil War story, this comedy casts Keaton as Johnnie Gray, a Southern railway engineer with two great loves: his train, and his girl. When both are threatened by Union soldiers in an elaborate, fantastically-shot hijacking, Keaton’s hapless Everyman springs into action, with thrilling and riotously funny results. The General stands out among Keaton’s films for its undeniable artfulness: produced with an auteur’s attention to detail, some of its train-stunts appeared so realistic that the local townspeople visiting the set screamed in horror. Keaton often cited this as his favorite personal creation—come see what makes it a timeless, gorgeous classic. Dir. Buster Keaton and Clyde Bruckman, 1927, 75 min. The film will be preceded by a shorts program and will include live musical accompaniment. GLASS JOHNNY LOOKS LIKE A BEAST (GARASU NO JONI – YAJU NO YO NI MIETE), 1962, Nikkatsu, 108 min. Joe Shishido is an ambitious, bike racetrack tout who becomes inadvertently involved in a triangle with a vulnerable prostitute (Izumi Ashikawa) and her brutal yakuza pimp (George Ai). Director Koreyoshi Kurahara reportedly used Fellini’s LA STRADA as a template, taking a decidedly Italian neo-realist approach to this gritty tale of low-lifes scrambling to survive on the ragged edge of nowhere. Shishido projects a bigger-than-life charisma here, a boorish charm and macho swagger comparable in scope to early Jean-Paul Belmondo and Alain Delon. Animation maestro Hayao Miyazaki is rumored to have later used female star Ashikawa as a model for some of his anime heroines. In Japanese with English subtitles. Goff in the Desert 2003/color/110 min. | Scr/dir: Heinz Emigholz American architect Bruce Goff sparked controversy during his lifetime (1904-1982). Austrian director Heinz Emigholz 's recent film, a 9,200-mile journey across the United States, shows sixty-two buildings from small petrol stations to LACMA's Japanese Pavilion. A Q&A follows with the director. THE HAL ROACH ALL-STAR FESTIVAL Hollywood Heritage board member Stan Taffel presents an evening of comedy featuring film rarities from the legendary Hal Roach Studio - which gave us Laurel & Hardy and the Our Gang comedies. Rare archival prints of 1922-1934 silent and sound short subjects will be screened. Happiness Banned until the ‘60s, Happiness is the crowning achievement of the Soviet films Chris Marker rediscovered and restored in 1971. Despite being made during a period of social realism, Alexander Medvedkin's film is a broad comedy whose slapstick masks vicious anti-Bolshevik commentary, marrying bleak but soulful wisdom with something akin to the magical absurdism of late 19th century Russian literature. The film resembles a stylized folk tale whose scenery is taken from popular Russian woodprints and tells the tale of the lazy peasant Khmyr and his motivated wife Anna who finds inspiration on a collective farm. Despite the criticism Medvedkin received for his searing parody of life after the revolution, he stated: “So Happiness is a satirical picture. I made it as the nail in the coffin of this rosy dream. I ridiculed that dream because it's unrealistic; 999 people out of 1,000 get nothing from a dream like that." Dir: Alexander Medvedkin, 1934, 35mm, 66 min. HELL’S FIVE HOURS, 1958, Paramount, 73 min. Dir. Jack L. Copeland. Vic Morrow (THE BLACKBOARD JUNGLE), with a performance seemingly inspired from the bowels of a trailer park in a "Cops" rerun, goes maniacally postal on his ex-employer, a missile base that he intends to blow to kingdom come! The maddened Morrow pauses long enough to shanghai one of the original Dark City Dames, Coleen Gray, to make his resignation statement particularly deadly. Co-starring Stephen McNally, as Gray’s understandably concerned mate, and the ubiquitous Robert Foulk, this gut-check suspenser hasn’t been screened theatrically since the Earth cooled and is an emblematic example of the new veins of noir being jointly mined by the American Cinematheque and the Film Noir Foundation. A leading candidate as this year’s festival sleeper. Don’t miss it! NOT ON DVD HERE IS ALWAYS SOMEWHERE ELSE Film about the life and work of Dutch/Californian conceptual artist Bas Jan Ader, who in 1975 disappeared under mysterious circumstances at sea in the smallest boat ever to cross the Atlantic. As seen through the eyes of fellow emigrant filmmaker Rene Daalder, the picture becomes a sweeping overview of contemporary art films as well as an epic saga of the transformative powers of the ocean. Featuring artists Tacita Dean, Rodney Graham, Marcel Broodthaers, Ger van Elk, Charles Ray, Wim T. Schippers, Chris Burden, Fiona Tan, Pipilotti Rist and many others. HIGHWAY 301, 1950, Warner Bros., 83 min. Director Andrew L. Stone (CRY TERROR!) was known primarily for musicals (including the pioneering black showcase STORMY WEATHER with Lena Horne) before suddenly switching to a solid decade of hardboiled yarns shot largely on authentic locations. This was the first in that vein, and one of the best. Steve Cochran is among our favorite noir tough guys -- here he's a cold-blooded outlaw leading the "Tri-State Gang" on a robbery and murder spree. The film combines the popular early-1950’s "documentary" approach with flashes of wildly stylized and (for the time) graphic violence. With Virginia Grey (THE THREAT), Gaby Andre and Robert Webber (12 ANGRY MEN) in his feature film debut. NOT ON DVD Hollywood Boulevard Joe Dante (Gremlins, Matinee) and Allan Arkush (Rock 'n' Roll High School) were trailer editors at New World Pictures when they convinced Roger Corman to give them a shot directing a feature. Using stock footage from many other New World productions, Dante and Arkush crafted a highly entertaining film that functions as both an exploitation picture (plenty of T&A) and a spoof of exploitation pictures. This virtually no-budget film is about the production of a virtually no-budget film at Miracle Pictures: "If it's a good film, it's a miracle!" The cast includes Corman favorite Dick Miller, Paul Bartel and his frequent partner-in-crime Mary Woronov, and such real-life New World employees as director Jonathan Kaplan and screenwriter Charles Griffith. The Howling Frightening, funny, and filled with references that movie buffs will love, Joe Dante's The Howling is one of the best werewolf films ever made. A TV news reporter goes on what is supposed to be a therapeutic retreat at an unusual "encounter group" community. It's hard to get your head together, however, when some of your neighbors want to tear it apart. Dee Wallace stars and, as usual, Dante populates the cast with plenty of B-movie favorites, such as John Carradine, Dick Miller and Kevin McCarthy. Co-written by John Sayles, who also has a brief cameo. HORROR EXPRESS, 1973, 90 min. Spanish Eugenio Martin (CANDLE FOR THE DEVIL) directs an international cast at a breakneck pace in this splendid, turn-of-the-20th-century thriller. Trans-Siberian Express passenger, Professor Saxton (Christopher Lee) is transporting what he believes to be the remains of the missing link, much to the disappointment of his rival, Professor Wells (Peter Cushing). What the two feuding scholars don’t realize is that the huge corpse is really a revived alien creature from outer space. Before long, the monster is boiling the brains of its victims with its red-eyed stare, absorbing their intellects and throwing the train into a panic. A countess, a beautiful spy, a Rasputin-like monk and a cruel Cossack (Telly Savalas, in fine form) are just a few of the characters making life difficult for our stalwart English heroes as they try to thwart the devilish fiend. The Hospital Paddy Chayefsky wrote this biting black comedy about a modern mega-hospital that strangles its patients--and doctors--in red tape. George C. Scott stars in a ferocious, Oscar-nominated performance. HOUSE OF GAMES, 1987, MGM Repertory, 102 min. David Mamet made one of the most stunning directorial debuts in American film history with this razor-sharp analysis of con games and the men who play them. Lindsay Crouse plays a psychiatrist and author who's tired of just treating criminal patients and writing about them -- she wants to experience some illicit thrills herself. She finds what she's looking for in the form of con artist Joe Mantegna, who draws Crouse into his world and gives her a lot more than she bargained for. I Know Who Killed Me Unfairly trashed as Z grade torture porn, Chris Sivertson's canny thriller is actually one of the nuttiest artsploitation flicks ever churned out by the Hollywood machine. Tabloid trainwreck Lyndsay Lohan flamed out in a spectacular fashion last year and among the collateral damage was the reputation of this star vehicle, which made a virtual sweep of the Razzie Awards for 2007. Apparently taking his cues from influences as diverse as Lynch (the black humor and surrealism), DePalma (the emotional pitch and film brat references), Cronenberg (the body horror) and Kieslowski (doppelgangers), Sivertson plunges the surprisingly game Lohan into a deliriously baroque, color-coded world of adoloescent anxiety and virgin/whore hysterics. With appearances by Art Bell, a hairless cat, stigmatic twins, a rechargeable prosthetic limb and Lohan's deliciously scuzzy poledancing, it's all here--including the film's unforgettable catchphrase cum motto "Everybody gets cut." Darkly funny, off-kilter, scary, sometimes poignant, always disreputable and sleazy, I Know Who Killed Me deserves a second look, HFS style. Don't miss it! Dir. Chris Sivertson, 2007, 35mm, 105 min. I'M GOING HOME (VOU PARA CASA) (2001) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira Oliveira continues his magisterial reflections on art and aging in this profound portrait of a distinguished actor coping with the aftermath of late-life tragedy. Michel Piccoli stars as the vigorous old stage lion who, when his wife and daughter are killed in a car accident, buries his grief in work while seeking solace in daily routine and doting on his young grandson. Oliveira's detached, elliptical style eschews big dramatic scenes in favor of quotidian moments, often laced with wry humor, and lengthy sequences of Piccoli practicing his craft onstage as well as in a disastrous film shoot supervised by John Malkovich (priceless as a pretentious American art-movie director bent on adapting Joyce's Ulysses for the screen). But emotion eventually bleeds through the exquisitely subtle, muted surfaces of I'm Going Home, culminating in Piccoli's climactic epiphany, a devastating yet also liberating recognition of fading powers and impending mortality. Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: Michel Piccoli, Catherine Deneuve, John Malkovich. Presented in French and English dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 90 min. Invincible Kung-Fu Legs An ultra-violent version of Taming of the Shrew, this little seen gem gives us the lovely and talented Hsia Kwan-li in a role tailor-made for her, and her ultra-flexible legs. Playing daddy's little princess, she struts around town with her goofy man-servant, picking fights with the local jive turkeys and getting into altercations that often result in her kicking the crap out of someone, literally. When her new martial arts teacher shows up (played by "Flashlegs" Tan Tao-liang), the two detest one another and immediately start trying to kill each other off. She's a princess used to beating people up until she gets her way, while he's a no-nonsense martial arts master used to being obeyed. How will they ever get along? Throw into the mix a vicious villain out to tear off Tan’s head; and you've got a movie that's one part Educating Rita and one part Five Fingers of Death. Honestly, if that doesn’t convince you, there's nothing more to say. Dir. Lee Tso Nam, 1980, 35mm, 90 min. I Walked with a Zombie (1943) Legendary horror producer Val Lewton teams with director Jacques Tourneur (Cat People) to retell Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre. A Canadian nurse (Frances Dee) is hired to take care of the lifeless wife of a plantation owner. Resorting to voodoo in order to find a cure, she soon realizes the terrifying truth about her situation. DIR. JACQUES TOURNEUR RUNNING TIME: 69 MINUTES. Jazzman (My Iz Dzhaza ) Set in the ‘20s, Karen Shakhnazarov’s wonderful Jazzman takes the shifting cultural politics of jazz in the Soviet Union as studied in such wonderful films as Frederick Starr’s Red and Hot and gives it a powerful human dimension. Konstantin, a talented music student, is expelled for his refusal to abide the official opinion that jazz, despite its widespread popularity, is to be frowned upon as a debased form of capitalist art. Konstantin literally takes to the streets, and he soon finds a few kindred souls, who share his passion and are similarly willing to endure the wrath of the cultural establishment. The original Russian title translates more accurately to “We Are Jazz,” and the conflation of the spirit of these characters with that of the music seems especially appropriate. Dir. Karen Shakhnazarov, 1983, 35mm, 88 min. Jewish Luck Once touted as "the greatest Jewish film ever made," Jewish Luck was produced in the Soviet Union during the time when government policy still defended different cultures from pervasive racism. The action revolves around Sholem Aleichem's classic stories about the tragicomic character, Menakhem Mendl. Mendl, a daydreaming schlemiel whose get-rich quick schemes are always doomed, manages to transform himself from a beguiling pauper to a wealthy matchmaker. His self-effacing grandiosity peaks with a hilarious Tati-esque dream sequence where Mendl sees himself "saving the America" by loading a steamboat full of young Russian brides. Theorists surmise that Eduard Tissé’s cinematography inspired his later work on Sergei Eisenstein's Battleship Potemkin. Dir: Alexis Granowsky, 1925, 35mm, 88 min. JEZEBEL, 1938, Warner Bros, 103 min. Bette Davis won an Oscar for her performance as a tempestuous Southern belle torn between her prime suitor (George Brent) and the man she truly loves (Henry Fonda). In addition to the top-notch performances, director William Wyler provides some gorgeous set-pieces, from the dance to which Davis wears her scandalous red dress to a sequence depicting the yellow fever epidemic. Julien Donkey-Boy Taking up the challenge of the Danish "Dogme 95" collective (a loose, rule-driven collective shooting on consumer-grade digital video with available light, props and sync sound), only to very publicly flaunt those rules in a full-page New York Times "confession", Harmony Korine delivered Julien Donkey-Boy, a potent domestic melodrama and a milestone in digital cinema. In a performance that must be seen to be believed, Trainspotting's Ewen Bremner stars as Julien, a schizophrenic social worker withering in a deeply hostile family environment. Tormented by his abusive father, a toxic caricature of patriarchy played with immense relish by Werner Herzog, Julien manifests a profound need for affection in increasingly disturbing, and ultimately ghastly ways. With visceral camerawork by genius cinematographer Anthony Dod Mantle (28 Days Later, The Celebration), Korine explores the dazzling possibilities of digital images, but Julien Donkey-Boy triumphs above all as a brave and insightful portrait of human frailty. Dir. Harmony Korine, 1999, 35mm, 101 min. The Lady Vanishes 1938/b&w/97 min. | Scr: Sidney Gilliat, Frank Launder; dir: Alfred Hitchcock; w/ Margaret Lockwood, Michael Redgrave When dotty old Miss Froy vanishes from a trans-European train that is snowbound in the Balkans, a poor musician and a beautiful heiress team up to uncover a nest of spies while falling in love. "Some of the finest examples of Hitchcock's touches . . . directed with such skill and velocity that it has come to represent the quintessence of screen suspense."—Pauline Kael. la Roue Co-Presented by LA Film Forum Join The Cinefamily and Turner Classic Movies as we co-present the world premiere digital restoration of filmmaker Abel Gance’s extraordinary work, La Roue (1922), which was created from the best available prints and negatives from several countries, and which will be accompanied by a new orchestral score by composer Robert Israel. Gance’s masterwork is a tragic love story set in the grime and soot of the railway yards, told with astonishing cinematic technical advances. French filmmaker Jean Cocteau took note of the film’s transformative power by declaring, “There is cinema before and after La Roue, as there is painting before and after Picasso.” By 1923, Gance had established himself as France’s leading filmmaker, and this film cemented that reputation. Its sophisticated use of cutting was so innovative that according to Gance, Russian directors Sergei Eisenstein and Vsevolod Pudovkin traveled to France and personally thanked him for educating them in the art of editing. Dir. Abel Gance, 1923, Digibeta, 273 min. There will be a 30 minute break for dinner. The Last Movie The success of Dennis Hopper’s Easy Rider gave many young filmmakers the opportunity to work in Hollywood under the studio system. In 1970, Universal hired five “young genius” directors to make pictures for them, including Hopper. The Last Movie was one of the amazing results. Hopper plays a stunt man and wrangler on a big budget Western. After the production leaves town, Hopper’s life starts to get a little insane, torn between a new movie producer in town, a buddy and his quest for gold, and the ritualistic movie being “shot” by the locals using a wicker camera. Under the surface bubbles the genius of the film, dealing with friendship, loyalty, the superstitious nature of filmmaking and the notion of genre. Although it received the only award given at the 1971 Venice Film Festival, Universal refused to distribute the film unless Hopper re-edited it. Hopper was unyielding, and Universal gave The Last Movie only token distribution and the picture was shelved. Showed at: CineVegas 2003 Dir. Dennis Hopper, 1971, 35mm, 108 min. LA VILLE LOUVRE (CITY LOUVRE), 1990, Kino, 83 min. French filmmaker Nicholas Philibert (IN THE LAND OF THE DEAF, TO BE AND TO HAVE) chronicles the behind-the-scenes operations of the Louvre in this fascinating documentary. From the discovery of hidden artworks to more routine matters of bureaucracy and operations, this film provides a glimpse of the "city within a city" that the public rarely sees. Discussion following with the director of the Louvre, Henri Loyrette. THE LETTER, 1940, Warner Bros, 95 min. Dir. William Wyler. CASABLANCA co-writer Howard Koch adapted Somerset Maugham's play about the wife of a plantation owner who commits murder and then enlists the aid of local colonialists to cover it up. Bette Davis gives one of her great performances as the killer, eliciting the audience's sympathy for a woman who, on the surface, hardly deserves it. With Herbert Marshall as her mortified spouse. LICENSE TO STEAL License to Steal is a wonderfully absurd caper flick. Godenzi plays a master thief who finds herself in a dangerous sibling rivalry with Agnes Aurelio; both women have their eyes set on the same prize, the Napoleon Mask, and both are willing to fight to prevent the other from stealing it first, even as the police close in on both of them. This film has myriad, jaw-droppingly gonzo fight scenes, with many of the signature moves that made Sammo Hung one of the best in the business. Dir. Billy Chan Wui-Ngai, 1990, 35mm, 90 min. Lifeboat (1944) Eight disparate passengers from a torpedoed Allied freighter find themselves stranded aboard a lifeboat in the North Atlantic. When they rescue a German sailor from the U-boat that sank their ship, they must put their survival in the hands of a man who may deliver them to their wartime enemies. Cast Tallulah Bankhead, William Bendix, Walter Slezak, Mary Anderson, John Hodiak, Henry Hull, Heather Angel, Hume Cronyn, Canada Lee. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Produced by Kenneth Macgowan. Screenplay Jo Swerling. Based on the original story by John Steinbeck. Cinematography Glen MacWilliams. Art Direction James Basevi, Maurice Ransford. Film Editing Dorothy Spencer. Costumes René Hubert. Music Hugo W. Friedhofer. Sound Bernard Freericks, Roger Heman. Twentieth Century-Fox. 35mm. 96 mins. Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive. The Living Wake That rare thing: an intelligent, beautifully acted and gloriously funny independent comedy. The Living Wake channels the spirit of such British comedies as Withnail & I and Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life but fashions a wholly original vision that is sure to become a cult classic. Self-proclaimed artist and genius K. Roth Binew (a tour de force by the charming Mike O’Connell) is a dreamer who elevates his somewhat pitiful existence into a personal mythology … and as part of that mythology, he has decided that he has reached the end of life. Binew enlists the unknown poet and biographer Mills Joquin to chronicle his final hours, which entail Joquin driving Binew around town on a pedicab searching for the meaning of life. As the eccentric duo go about their quest, Binew hands out invitations to his final party, a living wake. First-time director Sol Tryon exhibits the value of old virtues: characterization, detail and engagement. Showed at: CineVegas 2007 (World Premiere) Dir. Sol Tryon, 2007, HDCAM, 90 min. LOOS ORNAMENTAL (2008, Austria/Germany) Directed by Heinz Emigholz One of the masters of European modernism, Adolf Loos helped launch modern architecture with his foundational text decrying decorative building, fittingly titled Ornament and Crime, in 1908. Loos Ornamental presents 28 structures and spaces designed by the Viennese architect, who was also a mentor to Schindler and Richard Neutra, in the chronological order in which they were built. In the fate that befell Loos's career, Emigholz finds echoes of the fate of European modernism in the early decades of the 20th century. In person: Heinz Emigholz Presented in German dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 72 min. Loren Cass 1997: St. Petersburg, Florida, a “dirty, dirty town by a dirty, dirty sea.” The city is plagued by uprisings on the city’s south side after a young black motorist is gunned down by a white police officer. At the local high school an alcoholic principal drowns his sorrows when a student loads a .357 Magnum in a bathroom stall. Young guys reignite an old feud in the parking lot, setting off a cycle of violence that will see an ugly end. Loren Cass is not a coming-of-age movie or a loss of innocence – all innocence is lost from the opening scene. Rather, it’s about what comes next; figuring out what to do when you learn you’re not destined for greatness. Young director Chris Fuller captures some amazing subtleties in the everyday rhythms of life, but he provides punk rock explosions along the way, showing life as it’s lived without letting nostalgia dim the drama. Showed at: CineVegas 2007 (U.S. Premiere) Dir. Chris Fuller, 2006, HDCAM, 83 min. The Loved One 1965/b&w/122 min. | Scr: Terry Southern, Christopher Isherwood; dir: Tony Richardson; w/ Robert Morse, Jonathan Winters, Rod Steiger, Anjanette Comer, Dana Andrews, Milton Berle Inspired by Evelyn Waugh's satire about the American way of death, recent arrival Richardson crammed his film with SoCal archetypes including Morse as the naïve British manager of a mafia-owned mortuary, Comer as the necrophilic cosmetician Aimee Thantogenos, Steiger as a bleached-blonde, limp-wristed embalmer named Mr. Joyboy, and Liberace as a casket salesman. "The fine cinematography by Haskell Wexler adds to the mood of the film, relecting the macabre surroundings . . . and while burial customs are the main satirical focus, potshots are also taken at the military bureaucracy, overeating, and the film business." —Magill's Survey of Cinema. LURE OF THE SWAMP, 1957, Paramount, 75 min. "Destination... HELL! Greed led them into the misty depths of a strange land!" Comparatively unknown pulp novelist Gil Brewer, (The Vengeful Virgin; Wild to Possess) had a rep during the 50’s for some of the most nihilistic, sex-driven, ultra-violent fiction this side of Jim Thompson. Director Hubert Cornfield (NIGHT OF THE FOLLOWING DAY) helmed this hard-to-see, low-budget adaptation of one of Brewer’s steamy, noir bestsellers. Marshall Thompson (IT! THE TERROR FROM BEYOND SPACE) charters his skiff for jaunts into the swamp, and his curiosity is aroused when his newest client is unusually secretive. After the man turns up dead the next day, Thompson learns he was a bank robber – and the loot is missing! Our hero has an idea where the plunder is stashed, but is conflicted whether to keep it or give it up. Unfortunately for him, avaricious swamp vixen Joan Vohs (CRY VENGEANCE) gets stirred into the mix. With tough-guy veterans Jack Elam and Leo Gordon (RIOT IN CELL BLOCK 11). NOT ON DVD Maillart’s Bridges (Photography and Beyond 3) (2001, 35mm, 24 min.) Swiss architect Robert Maillart revolutionized concrete-based construction. By reducing the material to the essential load-bearing elements and redesigning these in his structures, he developed a completely novel world of forms. The film shows fourteen concrete roof constructions and bridges designed and built by Robert Maillart between 1910 and 1935: The warehouse on Zurich’s Giesshübelstrasse (1910), the filter building in Rorschach (1912), the Maggazini Generali warehouse in Chiasso (1924), the aqueduct near Chatelard (1925), the bridge over the Valtschielbach (1925), Salginatobel Bridge (1930), Spital Bridge (1931), the bridges over the Bohlbach and the Rossgraben Bridge (all 1932), the bridge over the Schwandbach and the Thur Bridge near Felsegg (both 1933), the footbridge over the River Toess in Winterthur (1934) and the Arvebrücke near Geneva (1935). Shooting took place in April 1996. The complex simplicity and elegance of the load-bearing structures set new aesthetic standards the world over. However, his rejection of massive construction methods and his reduction of forms to the essential lines of structural strength provoked mistrust among building authorities and led them to impose absurd conditions. His pioneering experiments can be found in out-of-the-way valleys of small cantons which gave him a free reign for his design. A MAN AND A WOMAN, 1966, Warner Bros., 103 min. This Oscar-winning love story is a model of simplicity and fluidity. A young widow meets a widower at the boarding school that both of their children attend. He is a race car driver. The scenery, race car sequences and score all serve to complement their friendship as it slowly emerges into a romance. Winner of the 1966 Cannes Film Festival. With Anouk Aimee, Jean-Louis Trintignant. Discussion in between films with director Claude Lelouch. In association with COLCOA, A week of French Film Premieres in Hollywood. THE MAN BETWEEN, 1953, Paramount, 100 min. Director Carol Reed’s underrated, shot-on-location post-WWII Berlin thriller was unfairly compared to his masterpiece THE THIRD MAN on its initial release. But it’s a different kind of crime story altogether, much closer to Reed’s ODD MAN OUT in style and spirit. Naive Claire Bloom arrives in a newly divided Berlin to visit her doctor brother (Geoffrey Toone), but immediately senses underlying conflict from German sis-in-law Hildegarde Neff and Neff’s strange relationship with cynical former lawyer James Mason. Soon shady Mason is caught in the middle when his Commie business associates plot to put a permanent stop to the outflow of smuggled East Germans making it into the West. When they kidnap smitten Bloom, Mason has to decide where his true loyalties lie, and a deadly game of nerve-jangling cat-and-mouse begins. NOT ON DVD The Man Who Knew Too Much 1956/color/120 min./VistaVision | Scr: John Michael Hayes; dir: Alfred Hitchcock; w/ James Stewart, Doris Day From a sunny Marrakesh medina teeming with assassins to the sinister back streets of rainy London, a driven father races the clock to find his kidnapped son. The American remake "replaces the British version's quirky social observations with a typically '50s examination of the family under melodramatic stress. Stewart and Day are the complacent couple . . . and their anxiety about their boy's safety steadily undermines the apparent happiness of a marriage founded on habit and compromise."—Time Out. Marathon Man 1976/color/125 min. | Scr: William Goldman; dir: John Schlesinger; w/ Dustin Hoffman, Laurence Olivier In this box office smash, Schlesinger cast his Midnight Cowboy star as an NYU grad student and committed jogger who goes on the run when his brother is knifed to death by diamond smugglers. In an Oscar-nominated performance, Olivier chilled audiences as a former Auschwitz dentist who tortures Hoffman in the dentist chair. "What director John Schlesinger has done, wisely, is to concentrate on a series of scenes that hold us so firmly while we're watching them, that questions don't enter our minds . . . . As well-crafted escapist entertainment, as a diabolical thriller, the movie works with relentless skill."—Roger Ebert. The Mask of Dimitrios Based on Eric Ambler’s novel A Coffin for Dimitrios, and adapted by pulp writer Frank Guber, this suspense-noir is notable for the debuts of eternal movie heel Zachary Scott and director Jean Negulesco. It also boasts a top billed Sydney Greenstreet along with Peter Lorre as an unlikely pair of international sleuths. Greenstreet’s mysterious financier and Lorre’s detective fiction writer go on a wild chase after the dastardly Dimitrios Makropolis (most probably based on the infamous real-life munitions billionaire Basil Zaharoff). Their trip takes them across the Balkans and into France, with double crosses and bodies piling up all along the way. Dir. Jean Negulesco, 1944, 35mm, 95 min. Millennium Mambo Narrated from some 11 years in an unseen future, Millenium Mambo follows Vicky (the arresting Shu Qi), a Shanghai nightclub hostess/dancer, who finds herself isolated between two lovers: an aging gangster, and a languorous, drug-addled DJ given to fits of rage. With expert cinematographer Li Ping-bin (In the Mood for Love), Hou scrutinizes the intoxicating, seemingly impenetrable surface of Vicky's life: sensuous uses of color and close-up ensure that we can feel her heart breaking. As pithy and soul-wrenching as anything in his oeuvre, Millenium Mambo nevertheless marked a departure for Hou, who bathes his elegant control of tone in an atypical techno pulse and a palette of electric blue. Dir. Hou Hsiao-Hsien, 2001, 35mm, 119 min. Miscellanea I (Photography and Beyond 5) (1988-2001, 35mm, b&w, 20 min.) Miscellanea I and II, as their titles suggest, are studies done during the filming of various other projects, “left-overs” that are assembled here in a new and fascinating way. Miscellanea I is a series studies on 35mm b/w film from 1988 to 1997: Raw meat at Cabo de Creus and the ruins of “Sant Pere de Rodes” in the Spanish Pyrenees, filmed on October 7 and 11, 1988. Eckhard Rhode, Kyle deCamp and John Erdman at Georges Rodenbach’s grave at the Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris on September 27, 1988. Eckhard Rhode translates the inscription on the tombstone: “Lord, give me hope to live on in the melancholic eternity of the book”. This footage was made while shooting the feature film “Der Zynische Körper (The Holy Bunch)”, in which the scene was not included. The power stations “Humboldt” and “Wilhelmsruh”, built by Hans Heinrich Müller in 1926 in Berlin - their interaction with the set-designs in Fritz Lang’s “Mabuse” films and “Metropolis” is still felt today - filmed on April 9 and 10, 1997. Jochen Nickel at Heinz Emigholz’s exhibition “Die Basis des Make-Up 1974-1994" in the Hamburg Kunsthalle on July 1, 1994. Views of plane trees in Barcelona with Eckhard Rhode on October 4, 1988 - a congenial relationship between the coulour nuances of tree bark and stones and Kodak’s Plus X b/w film. The tympanum of Auguste Rodin’s “The Gates of Hell” at the Zurich Kunsthaus on October 30, 1988. Hans Etter had scaffolding put up in the front of the sculpture so we could film details not visible from street level. The bronze casting of “La Porte de L’Enfer” in Zurich was done in the 1940s near Paris during the German occupation and was a present of the Nazi government to the Swiss arms manufacturer Bührle - as thanks for the good business relationship and the delivery of anti-aircraft guns. Miscellanea II (Photography and Beyond 6) (1988-2001, 35mm, color, 19 min.) The memorial to the crew of the crashed “Challenger” space shuttle in the grounds of the “Neil Armstrong Air & Space Museum” in Wapakoneta, Ohio, on April 3, 1995. “The Ladora Savings Bank” by C. B. Zalesky in Ladora, Iowa, April 4, 1995. Both motifs were discovered by chance during a filming expedition to the last eight buildings of Louis Sullivan in the Midwest of the United States. Neil Armstrong was born near Wapakoneta, Zalesky was a scholar of Sullivan. The painting “Building of the Devil’s Bridge” (ca. 1833) by Carl Blechen and the present location of the “Devil’s Bridge” at the St. Gotthard Pass, shot on April 18, 1996, during a filming expedition to Robert Maillart’s bridges. The castle in Arco and the swimming pool built by Giancarlo Maroni between 1932 and 1934 in Riva on Lake Garda, filmed March 23, 1997. Maroni came from Arco, and was D’Annunzios personal architect at the “Vittoriale” in Gardone. The footage was made during the shooting of “D’Annunzios Cave - Interior Design as Political Declaration”, Part 8 - still unfinished - of the series “Photography and beyond”. Ueli Etter cleaning the screens and printing motifs for his exhibition “on a clear day” in Berlin, August 22, 1995. The post offices in Sabaudia and Latina, south of Rome, built by Angiolo Mazzoni in the early 30s, and his railway station (1937) in Latina Scalo, filmes July 31, and August 3, 1995. Jochen Nickel, Ueli Etter und Ronny Tanner at Ueli Etter’s exhibition “you can see forever” on June 21, 1996. Buildings next to the Via Appia near Pontinia on August 7, 1995. Raw meat at Cabo de Creus in Spain on October 11, 1988. Miscellanea III (Photography and Beyond 10) (1997-2004, 35mm, 22 min.) A collage of architectural footage taken in the U.S. in April and May 2002 during the filming of Goff in the Desert and in Italy after March 24, 1997 in preparation for the project D’Annunzio’s Cave. MISCELLANEA (III) shows the portal, designed by Louis H. Sullivan, to the Chicago Stock Exchange on Monroe Street in Chicago, which was erected in 1894 and torn down in 1972; ruins of a glass factory in Henryetta, Oklahoma, from which Bruce Goff bought the colorful pieces of glass he often used; a railway bridge over a creek in the desert on Highway 62; the General Patton Memorial Museum on Interstate Highway 10 and an intersection in Twenty Nine Palms, California; “Gateway West” - the Mexican border - and City Hall in El Paso, New Mexico; a study of downtown Oklahoma City and the national memorial designed by Hans Butzer in honor of the people killed in the bombing of the Murrah Building on April 19, 1995; the Community Center designed by William Wesley Peters in 1982 and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Price Tower from 1956 in Bartlesville, Oklahoma; the Tower and geodesic Gold Dome that Robert B. Roloff built in 1958 in Oklahoma City from Buckminster Fuller’s plans; the jungle gym Bruce Goff built in Bartlesville, Oklahoma in 1963 for children; a Lockheed T-33, the training version of the first twin-jet US fighter plane, built on a German model, exhibited as a sculpture in front of the Center of Commerce in Del Rio, Texas; three buildings by Frank Lloyd Wright from the 1920s, in which Bruce Goff had a hand; the oldest cement fence in Tulsa, Oklahoma, the oldest brick silo near Bartlesville, and a concrete schoolhouse from the 1920s in Dewey, Oklahoma; the burial sites of Louis H. Sullivan and Bruce Goff in Graceland Cemetery in Chicago; the warship “Puglia” built into a mountain slope on the grounds of Gabriele d’Annunzio’s mausoleum, the “Vittoriale” in Gardone on Lake Garda - his body and those of ten loyal followers in sarcophagi on marble steles, high above Lake Garda. Mr. Lonely “Mister Lonely is easily his most accessible film to date. Which, uh, isn't to say our man Harmony is hewing to some newly boring path. In Paris, a Michael Jackson impersonator who's known only as, well, Michael Jackson (Diego Luna) meets a reasonably convincing Marilyn Monroe-alike (Samantha Morton), who tells him about her beloved home in the Scottish highlands--a commune for celebrity impersonators. Most of the movie takes place in this weirdly magical place, a castle where the sheep are herded by James Dean and Abraham Lincoln, and Buckwheat rides a Shetland pony. Marilyn's got problems with her hubby--Charlie Chaplin (Denis Lavant)--but Michael falls for her just the same. Considering all of this is very bizarre, the movie actually portrays the complexities of relationships with heartfelt realism.” —Cheryl Eddy, San Francisco Bay Guardian The Cinefamily is proud to present Mr. Korine’s first feature film in over a decade in this special sneak preview. To be followed by The Lonely, a one-hour documentary about the making of the film. Harmony Korine will be in attendance for a Q&A. Dir. Harmony Korine, 2007, 35mm, 112 min. MON CAS (MY CASE) (1986, France/Portugal) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira Oliveira's dizzying version of the play by Portuguese modernist José Régio echoes Jacques Rivette's Out 1 as a series of wildly different "rehearsals" for a staging that never takes place. Each new rehearsal in this rarely screened but essential Oliveira title brings on more modes of media and art, and accretes more layers of meaning and intertextuality. A man disrupts the first rehearsal, announcing that theater does not matter—all that matters is his own "case." The play is then performed as a silent movie, with speeded-up motion and only Samuel Beckett on the soundtrack. Live dialogue returns in the third rehearsal, but played backwards in an unintelligible babble. In the final rehearsal, actors portray Job and his wife while God "appears" via giant loudspeakers. For Oliveira, Mon cas describes "a questionable world, where humans don't understand each other and where God, if He exists, remains silent, dead or off-screen as a spectator." Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: Luís Miguel Cintra, Bulle Ogier, Axel Bougousslavsky. Presented in Portuguese dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 88 min. MONDO CANE, 1962, 105 min. Were there ever two more controversial Italian filmmakers than Gualtiero Jacoppetti and Franco E. Prosperi? Both continued on as partners after losing Paolo Cavara (the third co-director on MONDO CANE and a critic of the pair later on), making shocking pseudo-documentaries on such subjects as African poverty, exploitation & anarchy (AFRICA ADDIO) and the history of colonialism and American racism in the New World (GOODBYE, UNCLE TOM). But for every aspect of their crusading personas, the filmmaking duo often also attracted poisonous vilification, accused of manipulating real-life events for the camera – accusations they vehemently denied and refuted in court. Who knows where the truth lies? The films speak for themselves as fascinating documents. The first - and some consider best - is a case in point, offering a colorful, bizarre catalogue of weird customs and rituals from all over the world. It also began a prolific, if brief, fad in the 1960s of ‘mondo’ movies by all variety of filmmakers (most nowhere near as talented). With a beautiful score and theme song by Riz Ortolani (both of which were nominated for 1964 Academy Awards). MOVIE ORGY This the first, one nite only public showing in many years of my (Joe Dante's) first project. In 1968 when "camp" was king, Jon Davison and I put together a counterculture compendium of 16mm bits and pieces (tv show openings, commercials, parts of features, old serials etc.), physically spliced them in ironic juxtapositions and ran the result at the Philadelphia College of Art interspersed with parts of a Bela Lugosi serial. The reaction was phenomenal. This led to The Movie Orgy, a 7-hour marathon of old movie clips and stuff with a crowd-pleasing anti-war, anti-military, anti-establishment slant that played the Fillmore East and on college campuses all over the country for years -- always the one print. We called it a 2001-splice odyssey. We kept adding and subtracting material over time so this, alas, is not the original version-- it's the later cutdown, running a mere 4 hours and 19 minutes! But it's still a pop time capsule that will bring many a nostalgic chuckle from baby boomers and dazed expressions of WTF?! from anyone else. MY GUN IS MY PASSPORT (KORUTO WA ORE NO PASUPOTO) 1967, Nikkatsu, 89 min. Joe Shishido (GATE OF FLESH) and Jerry Fujio are hitmen hiding out in a remote, dust-blown trucker’s inn while waiting for the coast to clear. But, needless to say, complications ensue. Takashi Nomura was a journeyman director at Nikkatsu, who often turned out real gems that went largely unsung or underrated. This is his best, a visually stunning, black-and-white action opus, full of noir atmosphere as well as breakneck set-pieces, all culminating in a pulse-pounding, ultra-violent and surreal climax. Chitose Kobayashi and Ryotaro Sugi co-star. The Nikkatsu publicity department loosely linked this with other black-and-white 1967 Shishido gangster pix, Seijun Suzuki’s BRANDED TO KILL and Yasuharu Hasebe’s MASSACRE GUN. In Japanese with English subtitles. NAKED KILLER Since its release in 1992, Clarence Fok and Wong Jing’s Naked Killer has garnered a cult following among fans for its over-the-top, explicit violence and graphic sexual nature, and is often mentioned as one of the top ten must-see films for any die-hard fan of HK cinema, so it was a no-brainer to conclude our series with this thriller starring Simon Yam as an impotent and guilt-ridden cop who gets in the middle of a feud between warring teams of female assassins. This is one sick twist of a film; overloaded with stylish action, rampant bloodshed, deranged black humor and if the film teaches us anything, it’s this: always look at what you’re eating before you put it in your mouth. Dir. Clarence Fok, 1992, DVD, 90 min. The Nest James Fotopoulos’ reign over urban shadow life continues with The Nest. After being deeply immersed in the day-to-day existence of a white couple living an extremely homogenous lifestyle, we learn about an incident: they ran over something; the government was involved; now, agents are drugging them and conducting dream tests. Fotopoulos’ exacting cinematic style pelts the suit-and-tie couple with acid and steel as creeps from the forest secretly torture the pair. Few young filmmakers working today have been as prolific as Fotopoulos or had such a perplexing effect on audiences, critics and festival programmers while building a rabid cult following. Comparisons to early Lynch, Cronenberg and no-budget horror mavens get close, but they present expectations that aren’t fair to one with Fotopoulos’ unique style. Too raw and uncompromising for university professors, too existential for trash film fans, Fotopoulos ignores trends and analysis and instead relishes in what means he has available. Showed at: CineVegas 2004 (Area 52) Dir. James Fotopoulos, 2003, 16mm, 78 min. NIGHT AND THE CITY, 1950, 20th Century Fox, 96 min. Dir. Jules Dassin (THE NAKED CITY; BRUTE FORCE). We close out Noir City with a stunning print of the most baroque and bleak film noir of them all. The greatness of this film -- besides Richard Widmark's devastating portrayal of the maniacal, pathetic con man and small-time promoter Harry Fabian -- is its stubborn refusal to allow even the tiniest ray of light into Harry's headlong descent into hell. Featuring an unforgettable supporting rogue's gallery, including Googie Withers, Herbert Lom, Francis L. Sullivan, Mike Mazurki, Stanislaus Zbyszko -- and the gorgeous Gene Tierney (LAURA). With a screenplay by Jo Eisinger from the novel by Gerald Kersh. NIGHT HAS A THOUSAND EYES, 1948, Universal, 81 min. "This gift, which I never asked for and don’t understand, has brought me only unhappiness!" A lost noir returns to the big screen! Edward G. Robinson gives a doom-laden performance as a bogus carnival "mentalist" who becomes cursed with the ability to actually see into the future. John Farrow, a director at his most stylish in noir terrain, adapts from the novel by master of suspense Cornell Woolrich (REAR WINDOW). Co-starring Gail Russell (THE UNINVITED) and John Lund (NO MAN OF HER OWN), and featuring gorgeous camerawork from John Seitz (DOUBLE INDEMNITY). Universal Pictures struck this brand-new 35mm print exclusively for Noir City! "This nifty little B-thriller…packs a powerful wallop, offering plenty of suspense and tension …John Seitz’s stark B&W cinematography adds to the rich atmosphere of the tale..." – FilmFanatic.org NOT ON DVD THE NIGHT HOLDS TERROR, 1955, Sony Repertory, 86 min. "Three young, empty-eyed killers, without mercy or morals, turn a private home into a house of horror!" Director Andrew L. Stone (THE LAST VOYAGE) was known for his vivid re-creations of both fictional and true-life stories, and here he pulls out all the stops, as usual, with stunning, down-and-dirty on-location shooting. John Cassavetes and Vince Edwards effortlessly project a Charlie Starkweather-type menace as part of a trio holding middle-class, average American Jack Kelly (Bart in the original "Maverick" TV series) and his family hostage in their suburban home. Based on a real-life hostage story that took place in 1953, the actual kidnappers were angry at the film’s depiction of their exploits because it ruined their chance for an appeal! NOT ON DVD Discussion in between films with actress Coleen Gray (HELL’S FIVE HOURS). Nightmare Alley 1947/b&w/110 min | Scr: Jules Furthman; dir: Edmund Goulding; w/ Tyrone Power, Joan Blondell Like Whale, Goulding had demons, but in a career largely devoted to women's pictures, they surfaced late in this pitiless tale of a touring carnival con man destroyed by his primal urges. "Remarkably sordid for so high-profile a release . . . and excitingly tawdry, this backstage excursion through the showbiz lower depths was evidently initiated at Power's request and involved a number of high-powered professionals. The early sequences are nearly timeless in introducing the carnival world of marks and rubes, Gypsy fortune-tellers, dimwitted strongmen, and the unseen geek—a broken-down alcoholic who bites the heads off live chickens for a daily bottle of booze and a place to sleep."—J. Hoberman, Village Voice. The Night of the Hunter 1955/b&w/93 min | Scr: James Agee; dir: Charles Laughton; w/ Robert Mitchum, Shelley Winters, Lillian Gish Laughton directed only one film, a poetic allegory about good vs evil in which the struggle between a deranged minister and two innocent children plays out in a gothic Southern milieu. The black and white images by cinematographer Stanley Cortez are legendary. "Evokes a Grimm landscape where love is constantly and erratically at war with the forces of hate. Perverse yet remarkably life-affirming, Night of the Hunter may be the best film ever made about spiritual perseverance."— Slant. NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, 1968, The Weinstein Company, 96 min. Director George Romero’s unqualified masterpiece pits a handful of citizens holed up in a farmhouse against a newly revived horde of flesh-eating zombies. The cast of talented unknowns headed by Duane Jones are all alarmingly believable as they fight for life, trying to escape a bad dream that gets uncompromisingly worse and more horrifying as the hours crawl by. If you’ve never seen this hackles-raising classic on the big screen, here’s your chance. With select members of the original cast in attendance. (TBC) NO, OR THE VAIN GLORY OF COMMAND (NON, OU A VÃ GLÓRIA DE MANDAR) (1990, Portugal/Spain/France) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira A war film with almost no combat, Non takes place mostly on the back of a jeep barreling through the West African jungle, while a troop of reluctant draftees to Portugal's last colonial frontlines talk about conquests and empire, mosquitoes and love. As their memory turns back to the great Portuguese defeats of the past—dealt to the spear-throwing Lusitanians and King Sebastian, among others—these battles are recreated onscreen. Acting as poetic counterpoint, the film's opening shot encircles a pendulous African tree, and the mythical Isle of Love turns up mid-film, complete with winged cupids and nymphs, harking back to Portugal's long-gone Age of Discovery when maritime voyagers brought knowledge of "new worlds, new people, new seas, and new skies." This rigorously cerebral film ends on an eminently human note—in an army hospital with the harrowing death of the anti-colonialist lieutenant, on the day of Portugal's 1974 Carnation Revolution that would finish its colonial empire. Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: Luís Miguel Cintra, Diogo Dória, Luís Lucas. Presented in Portuguese and Spanish dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 111 min. NORA PRENTISS, 1947, Warner Bros., 111 min. Dir. Vincent Sherman (THE DAMNED DON’T CRY) "A mouth like hers was for kissing, not telling!" Inspired by the success of MILDRED PIERCE, Warner Bros. gave the full noir makeover to "Oomph Girl" Ann Sheridan, darkening her breezy image by casting her as a San Francisco chanteuse who, through no fault of her own, has a knack for destroying the men who fall in love with her. Kent Smith (CAT PEOPLE) gives his finest performance as the good doctor who throws away his life for the woman of his dreams. One of director Sherman's most memorable melodramas, screenwriter N. Richard Nash and story writers Paul Webster and Jack Sobell supply a scenario worthy of David Goodis -- perhaps one of the most bleak, subversive views of middle-class values to ever come out of a major studio in the 1940s. With Bruce Bennett, Rosemary DeCamp, Robert Alda. NOT ON DVD Discussion in between films with actress Barbara Hale (THE CLAY PIGEON). O DIA DO DESESPERO (DAY OF DESPAIR) (1992) Directed by Manoel de Oliveira Considered Portugal's greatest 19th century novelist, Camilo Castelo Branco led a life so tumultuous with scandal and passion that Oliveira fondly refers to him as the closest Portuguese equivalent not to Cervantes, but to the character of Don Quixote. O Dia do Desespero traces the last days of Branco's life before encroaching blindness led him to shoot himself in his rocking chair. No conventional biopic, the film's ghostly lighting and breathtaking attention to material objects draws us powerfully into the desperate love affair between the writer and death. One of the film's actors, Luís Miguel Cintra, has commented that in O Dia do Desespero, "the dead things are filmed to speak of the life that they hide. Living actors are filmed to speak of the dead." Ultimately, the state of uncertainty that Oliveira imposes—between actor and character, history and fiction—leads to a film of rare hallucinatory power, one that Randal Johnson calls "perhaps Oliveira's most spectral and phantasmagoric." Screenwriter: Manoel de Oliveira. Cast: Teresa Madruga, Mário Barroso, Luís Miguel Cintra. Presented in Portuguese dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 75 min. ONE WAY STREET, 1950, Universal, 79 min. Dir. Hugo Fregonese (BLACK TUESDAY). Even though he had just started his American career, James Mason already had his doomed-fugitive persona down pat. From Carol Reed’s ODD MAN OUT (1947) through Max Ophuls’ THE RECKLESS MOMENT (1949), with the lift of an eyebrow or a barely perceptible change in voice inflection, Mason could convey a whole history of loneliness and emotional pain hidden behind a cultured, dignified front. Here he’s a disillusioned doctor who feels responsible for his wife’s death and believes he’s only worthy of patching up wounded criminals. Deciding to take a gamble, he tricks Los Angeles gang boss Dan Duryea out of his latest haul, as well as absconding with Duryea’s more than willing moll, Marta Toren. The pair head for Mexico with the swag – but can they outrun Duryea’s seemingly limitless reach? With William Conrad, Jack Elam. NOT ON DVD Parable (1964, USA) Commissioned for exhibition in the Protestant Council's Pavilion at the 1964 World's Fair, the 22-minunte Parable is, according to Time magazine, "basically an art film that got religion." Piranha For producer Roger Corman, the main motivation behind Piranha was to exploit the success of Jaws with a low-budget knock-off. When he assigned Joe Dante to direct the project, however, Corman got much more in the bargain. Working from a clever script by John Sayles, Dante made a film that is as much a spoof as a rip-off. Rife with movie references and populated with B-movie character actors (Dick Miller, Paul Bartel, Kevin McCarthy, Barbara Steele and others), this is a highly successful amusement. Point Blank 1967/color/92 min./Panavision | Scr: Alexander Jacobs, David Newhouse, Rafe Newhouse; dir: John Boorman; w/ Lee Marvin, Angie Dickinson Marvin miraculously survives a brutal double-cross on deserted Alcatraz but is stymied in his attempt to collect his loot from a faceless corporate mob. Boorman's time-fractured film is a nihilistic nightmare and one of the most influential films of the 60s. "The actual and the imaginary are perfectly joined in Point Blank. For it is not only an account of Marvin's remorseless and romantic hacking away at the syndicate, but his dream in the instant that he dies . . . . A masterpiece."—David Thomson. Radiant Hoping to find a cure for the incurable, a rogue scientist experiments with man-made viruses in a remote desert laboratory. Patients with illnesses that cannot be diagnosed make the pilgrimage to his compound, desperate enough to undergo his radical treatment – to be infected with a “perfect virus” that has the potential to save them, but could also lead to a horrible end. This contemplative, contemporary sci-fi tale intertwines philosophical musings with gripping suspense. Cerebral loner Ed serves as the narrator, relaying the stories of the pilgrims willing to serve as human guinea pigs. When government operatives swoop in to shut down the lab, the group escapes into the desert, facing an epic transformation on the edge of the unknown. Director Steve Mahone impressively weaves documentary footage, experimental montage and breathtaking cinematography to create a thought-provoking story of self discovery that approaches the final boundary of what mankind can be – and bravely steps across it. Showed at: CineVegas 2005 (World Premiere) Dir. Steve Mahone, 2005, HDCAM, 107 min. THE RED BALLOON, 1956, Janus Fims, 34 min. Dir.Albert Lamorisse. Newly restored and available for the first time in almost a decade, Albert Lamorisse's THE RED BALLOON remains one of the most beloved children's films of all time. In this deceptively simple, nearly wordless tale, a young boy discovers a stray balloon that seems to have a mind of its own. Wandering through the streets of Paris, the two become inseparable, to the surprise of the neighborhood and the envy of other children. Winner of the Palme d’Or at the 1956 Cannes Film Festival, the film has enchanted the young—and the young at heart—for decades, and it will surely find a new generation of fans with this rerelease. THE RED HOUSE, 1947, 100 min. Dir. Delmer Daves. "What I cannot have…I’ll destroy!" One of the most haunting American Gothic films ever made. A strange brother and sister (Edward G. Robinson and Judith Anderson) raise a foster daughter on their remote farm and always tell her not to go into the woods…ever. Beautifully written and directed by Delmer Daves (helmer of DARK PASSAGE and the original 3:10 TO YUMA) with a compelling score by the great Miklos Rozsa. Co-starring Rory Calhoun, Julie London, Allene Roberts, Lon McCallister, Ona Munson. This rare gem has not been screened theatrically for decades! Don’t miss this one, but please, don’t come and watch THE RED HOUSE by yourself! ROMAN DE GARE, 2008, Samuel Goldwyn Films, 110 min. Best selling author Judith Ralitzer is researching unlikely places to find characters for her next bestseller. As luck would have it, a serial killer with a penchant for magic tricks has just escaped from a high-security prison, providing the perfect source material for an intricately plotted, moody mystery. Deceptively layered and intriguingly misleading, this highly anticipated new film from Oscar-winning director Claude Lelouch stars Dominique Pinon and Fanny Ardent as an unlikely pair caught up in a game with high stakes – and deadly consequences. ROUGHNECK (ARAKURE) 1969, Nikkatsu, 86 min. Yasuharu Hasebe (STRAY CAT ROCK -- SEX HUNTER) directed this fiercely kinetic tale of wannabe yakuza youths (Akira Kobayashi, Tatsuya Fuji, et al.). When not cooking up scams with his buddies, Kobayashi develops a crush on Fuji’s disgusted sister, Masako Izumi. But soon the young hoods run afoul of their underworld idols when they rob the wrong gang, led by brutal boss Jotaro Togami. The saga begins with a bumptious comic tone but descends into appropriately grim territory once blood has been shed and mischievous youthful illusions are shattered. When Kobayashi’s pals start to bite the dust, he hooks up with a more traditional yakuza (Ryoji Hayama) to retaliate. Look out for Joe Shishido in a wordless cameo as one of Togami’s most lethal hitmen. In Japanese with English subtitles. SCHINDLER'S HOUSES (2007, Austria/Germany) Directed by Heinz Emigholz Structured as a series of elegantly composed views in and around some 40 Southern California homes designed by Austrian-born architect Rudolph Schindler, many nestled into the hillsides of Los Feliz and Silverlake, Schindler's Houses is much more than a survey. Emigholz's long takes, subtle edits and hypnotic soundtrack of everyday sounds draw the viewer into Schindler's pioneering modernism and, through them, into a reinvigorated connection to Los Angeles itself. In person: Heinz Emigholz Presented in German and English dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 99 min. THE SEARCHERS, 1956, Warner Bros., 119 min. John Ford's masterpiece, and one of the great American films of all time. John Wayne gives the performance of his career as Ethan Edwards, a deeply troubled Civil War veteran who heads off in search of his kidnapped niece (Natalie Wood) and becomes more obsessive and irrational as his journey progresses. Through Wayne's character, Ford explores the contradictions and dark side of the American frontier, in an elegiac tone that is as nostalgic as it is unrelentingly harsh. This classic inspired imagery and storylines in dozens of later landmark films, from TAXI DRIVER to STAR WARS. Film critic Kevin Thomas will introduce the screening. THE SECRET INVASION This scenic WWII epic, shot in Yugoslavia in 1964, is one of Roger Corman's least-seen yet most accomplished films, with essentially the same plot as THE DIRTY DOZEN -- which wasn't made until three years later! Stewart Granger, Mickey Rooney, Edd Byrnes, Henry Silva and Raf Vallone are felons recruited for a mission to rescue an Italian general from behind enemy lines. Roger used this story idea in his first movie, FIVE GUNS WEST. Shadow of a Doubt (1943) Charlotte “Charlie” Newton idolizes her charming Uncle Charlie and is delighted when he arrives for an extended visit. When she gradually comes to believe that her uncle is connected with a series of murders, her suspicions put her own life in danger. Cast Teresa Wright, Joseph Cotten, MacDonald Carey, Henry Travers, Patricia Collinge, Hume Cronyn, Wallace Ford, Edna May Wonacott, Charles Bates. Directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Produced by Jack H. Skirball. Screenplay Thornton Wilder, Sally Benson, Alma Reville. Based on the original story by Gordon McDonell. Cinematography Joseph Valentine. Art Direction John B. Goodman. Associate Art Director Robert Boyle. Film Editing Milton Carruth. Costumes Vera West, Adrian. Music Dimitri Tiomkin. Sound Bernard B. Brown. Jack H. Skirball Productions. Universal Pictures. 35mm. 108 mins. Print courtesy of the Academy Film Archive. Simon of the Desert (1965, Mexico) Luis Buñuel's Simon of the Desert is the ascetic St. Simon who stood on a pedestal for six years, six months, and six days observing his adulators' needs and demand for cheap miracles while simultaneously trying to ward off a very sexy Satan. SMOG (1962, Italy) Directed by Franco Rossi Franco Rossi directed this rarely screened film about an Italian attorney and his brief encounter with the City of Angels. With a whole day to kill before his connecting flight to Mexico City, Vittorio heads for Hollywood, but feels lost amidst the lack of cafes and other pedestrians. He soon meets Italian ex-pat Mario (Renato Salvatori), who makes ends meet by teaching Italian to Beverly Hills housewives, while dreaming of striking oil in Culver City. Mario introduces him to the pretty Gabriella (Annie Girardot), who creates ambient music systems for art galleries and swimming pools. Gabriella's dream is to buy the glamorous glass-walled pad she's house-sitting in the Hollywood Hills (Pierre Koenig's Stahl House). With forays into swanky Hollywood cocktail parties, a diner, bar and bowling alley, SMOG is a fun and fascinating time capsule of mid-century Los Angeles. Cast: Enrico Maria Salerno, Annie Girardot, Renato Salvatori. Presented in Italian dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 88 min. SORRY, WRONG NUMBER, 1948, Paramount, 89 min. Dir. Anatole Litvak (DECISION BEFORE DAWN; THE SNAKE PIT). Writer Lucille Fletcher adapted her own mega-hit radio play to the big screen, with Barbara Stanwyck as the emotionally crippled, bedridden heiress who overhears a murder plot on a crossed phone connection. As she tries to get someone, anyone, to take her fears seriously, Stanwyck gradually realizes she may be the intended victim. Who could want her dead? Why can’t she get in touch with her husband (Burt Lancaster), who works for her wealthy father? Could it be spouse Lancaster plotting against her? Or someone else? Expert director Litvak gets the most out of his enclosed set, making unobtrusive use of flashbacks to briefly take us out of Stanwyck’s lavish bedroom – what amounts to a luxurious prison where she waits for her appointment with the Grim Reaper. The suspense builds to a shattering conclusion. With Wendell Corey, Ann Richards, Leif Erickson, Ed Begley. Standard Operating Procedure In Standard Operating Procedure, documentary filmmaker Errol Morris (The Fog of War, The Thin Blue Line) examines the context of the shocking and damning photographs of prisoners from Abu Ghraib. Morris talks directly to the soldiers who took the images and those who were in the photographs to try and answer the question: How could American values become so compromised that Abu Ghraib—and the subsequent cover up—happen? START THE REVOLUTION WITHOUT ME (1970, United States) Directed by Bud Yorkin Gene Wilder and Donald Sutherland are outrageous as two pairs of mismatched twins (the aristocratic Dukes de Sisi and their oafish peasant doubles Charles and Claude Coupé) who face off hysterically on opposite sides of the French Revolution. As Duke Philippe De Sisi, Wilder sports a chartreuse dressing gown, covets his pet falcon much more than his wife (and takes terrible offense when she points out that his taxidermed pet is Dead!), while switching breezily between Barrymoresque faux-British and the manic American speech that would characterize his turn four years later as Dr. Frankenstein. Meanwhile as Philippe's foppish brother Pierre, Sutherland displays his full comic prowess with a heap of strawberry-blonde curls, rouged cheeks, and a distinct listhp. In one madly incestuous scene, Wilder scrubs Sutherland's back with a loofah while Sutherland spills out of a golden bathtub far too small for his hulking frame. Meanwhile Orson Welles co-stars as a documentary narrator, who stands in front of Versailles and intones ponderously: Did you know that the entire French Revolution could have been avoided? A precursor to the terrific Wilder-Brooks comedies to follow—and, like those films steeped in Hollywood history by way of screwball—START THE REVOLUTION WITHOUT ME is a seriously intelligent, anarchic, loving send-up of the costume dramas that make up the rest our series. The action is punctuated by frilly intertitles that incessantly hammer in the all-important fact that the this film is set in 1789. A sepia-toned credits sequence acts as a compendium of the excesses in the genre—sword fights, boudoir ravishings, flaming guillotines, and overacting. But the film also offers up a timely comment on the turbulent status of class and gender in post-60s America, with a nymphomaniac Marie Antoinette and a delicious Fragonard-moment when the Duchess de Sisi costumes herself as a shepherdess and convenes an entire flock of sheep into her bedchamber. Producer: Bud Yorkin. Screenwriter: Lawrence J. Cohen, Fred Freeman. Cinematographer: Jean Tournier. Editor: Ferris Webster. Cast: Gene Wilder, Donald Sutherland, Hugh Griffith. 35mm, 90 min. Storm Over Asia It is 1918, and the Mongolian descendants of Genghis Khan have become pastoral herdsmen, exploited on their ancestral land which has been occupied by cigar-smoking British merchants who “buy cheap and sell dear.” Bair, our shepherd protagonist, steals a precious fur piece and sets off a series of events that up the simmering national differences to a full boil. Vsevolod Pudovkin, an avant-garde master, has created a work that operates on many levels—it is a breathless adventure film, a recording of a lost way of life, a timeless and humanistic rallying cry for revolution, and a fascinating take on the propaganda film. Dir: Vsevolod Pudovkin, 1928, 16mm THE STORY OF MOLLY X, 1949, Universal, 82 min. Writer-director Crane Wilbur (CANON CITY; OUTSIDE THE WALL) had an obsession with prison stories, but this ultra-rarity has a twist: The protagonist is a brass-knuckled dame (June Havoc) who takes over her boyfriend's Frisco gang when he's killed. After murdering the culprit in cold blood, she winds up in women's prison -- and you know what happens in those places. Part melodrama, part documentary look inside the Women's Correctional Institution at Tehachapi, this shot-on-location drama is also notable for its frank take on sexual abuse leading to a life of crime. Presented in a brand-new 35mm print courtesy of Universal Pictures! NOT ON DVD THE STRANGE LOVE OF MARTHA IVERS, 1946, Paramount, 116 min. Dir. Lewis Milestone. In one of the darkest psychodramas of the 1940s, Barbara Stanwyck portrays the title character, the cast-iron magnate of an East Coast steel town whose passion is rekindled by the return of a long-lost childhood friend (the redoubtable Van Heflin, of THE PROWLER and ACT OF VIOLENCE). This doesn't sit well with Martha's husband (Kirk Douglas, in a vivid debut), who's faithfully kept the dark secret at the core of Martha's life. Will Iverstown survive the flames of furious forties' melodrama? Also starring Lizabeth Scott. Screenwriter Robert Rossen was to hit the noir jackpot the very next year, directing Abe Polonsky’s screenplay of the classic BODY AND SOUL starring John Garfield. Discussion between films with actor Darryl Hickman (The Strange Love of Martha Ivers) STRANGER ON THE THIRD FLOOR, 1940, Warner Bros., 64 min. Dir. Boris Ingster. A newspaper reporter (John McGuire) plunges into a nightmare of guilt, fearing that his "evidence" has sentenced the wrong man to death. A stunning example of cinematic expressionism, cited by many as the first studio film shot in a completely noir style. Peter Lorre virtually reprises the eerily convincing persona he created in Fritz Lang’s M, adding an emotion-wringing melancholia to his performance as a paranoid, lost soul. Featuring the astounding art direction of Van Nest Polglase and the brilliant cinematography of Nicholas Musuraca, as well as reportedly uncredited script work by Nathanael West (The Day of the Locust)! With Margaret Tallichet, Elisha Cook Jr. NOT ON DVD Sullivan’s Banks (Photography and Beyond 2) (1993-2000, 35mm, color, 38 min.) Emigholz presents the buildings of the great American architect Louis Sullivan (1856–1924). At the age of thirty-five, Sullivan was one of America’s most famous architects. The skyscraper trilogy (”Wainwright Building”, St. Louis 1892, “Guaranty Building”, Buffalo 1896, “Bayard Building”, NYC 1899) that he designed together with Dankmar Adler can be found in every dictionary of architecture. The basis of his creations was the separation of construction and facade made possible by the invention of reinforced concrete. He consistently draped his buildings with facades that no longer had a load-bearing function as a form of free expression. From one building to the next, both inside and outside, he varied and perfected his modular ornamental designs in brick, steel, plaster, terracotta, glass, ceramics, mosaic, marble, light, relief, stencil designs, wood and metal. We find ourselves in the heart of Americana. Walt Whitman was Sullivan’s role model, and just like him, Sullivan drew upon the sign language of nature rather than historical styles. This language is accessible to all and is therefore the basis of democracy. Democracy must be a vessel for the repetition of human experience. Its sites must preserve human dignity. Tamango (1958) Banned for its inter-racial romance, Tamango follows the voyage of a Dutch slave captain (Curd Jergens), who faces a revolt sparked by a captured African slave (Alex Cressan). The rebellion reaches a showdown when the captain's mistress (a devastating Dorothy Dandridge) is taken prisoner. DIR. JOHN BERRY RUNNING TIME: 98 MINUTES. Through a Glass Darkly (1961) On an isolated island, a young woman slips into schizophrenia as her father, a writer, dispassionately chronicles her descent. The woman’s discovery of the diary hastens her disintegration, and her husband and brother are implicated in her tragic fate. 91 mins. Three Strangers Based on John Huston’s short story “Three Men and a Girl,” the inspiration for Three Strangers evolved from the screenwriter’s personal experience with a Burmese statue he purchased from an antique shop in England. Huston conceived the story of three strangers purchasing a lottery ticket and signing it with the name of an icon to inspire good luck. Starring Sydney Greenstreet as a careless solicitor, Peter Lorre, a gent who has slid into alcoholism and Geraldine Fitzgerald as the woman with a past. Bound together by a shared destiny of a winning lottery ticket and a strange ritual, the intertwined lives of the three strangers becomes a labyrinth of plot twists, character skeletons and stunning denouements. After working with Lorre, director Negulesco described him as “the most talented man I have ever seen in my life." Three Strangers is one of the forgotten films of the 1940s; this overlooked classic is virtually never screened and is not on DVD or VHS. Dir. Jean Negulesco, 1946, 16mm, 92 min. TODESSPIEL (Deadly Game) 1997, 180 min., color, Beta SP Proj. Todesspiel documents the events of the “German Autumn” 1977 when RAF kidnapped H. M. Schleyer, a prominent businessman, and Palestinian terrorists hijacked a Lufthansa flight, both aiming to gain the release of imprisoned RAF members, including Andreas Baader and Ulrike Meinhof. This prize-winning documentary by Heinrich Breloer re-enacts the key scenes, while punctuating the unfolding drama with interviews with some of the key participants. With this technique, Breloer manages to create an electrifying account of contemporary history and a spectacular genre film at the same time. German w/English subtitles TOMB OF LIGEIA, 1964, MGM/UA, 81 min. The last – and some say the greatest – of the Roger Corman/Vincent Price/Edgar Allan Poe cycle is one of the high watermarks of 1960s horror, a gorgeous, color-drenched meditation on marital fidelity from beyond the grave. Price is at his very best as the black-clad nobleman (dig those mod shades he’s wearing!), pursued by multiple incarnations of his dead wife. Scripted by Robert Towne of CHINATOWN fame, with wonderful cinematography by Hammer Films vet Arthur Grant. TOMORROW IS ANOTHER DAY, 1951, Warner Bros., 90 min. Handsome Steve Cochran with the perpetual 5 o’clock shadow-racked up a slew of noir credits before his premature death in 1965, including WHITE HEAT, PRIVATE HELL 36 and THE DAMNED DON’T CRY. Here, he’s an ex-con who’s never been with a woman. Ruth Roman (STRANGERS ON A TRAIN) is a dime-a-dance dame with no use for sappy men. A hotel room, a dirty cop, a gunshot -- the perfect jumpstartfor a fugitives-on-the-run love story. This virtually unknown noir is director Felix Feist’s masterwork, packed with revelatory set-pieces. Feist also helmed the legendary THE DEVIL THUMBS A RIDE, and this hard-luck saga more than matches DEVIL’s twisted pyrotechnics. Cochran was never more vulnerable, Roman never sexier. Imagine GUN CRAZY scripted by Steinbeck -- it’s that good. NOT ON DVD TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH, 1948, Sony Repertory, 109 min. One of the first post-war movies that attempted to deal seriously with the burgeoning narcotics trade in defiance of a Production Code that forbade nearly any mention of the subject! In true "docu-noir" style, Treasury agent Dick Powell trots the globe trying to pin down the leader of a diabolical heroin ring with a series of surprising occurrences culminating in a stunning denouement. Directed by Robert Stevenson and co-starring Signe Hasso, Gloria (Maylia) Fong, Vladimir Sokoloff and John Hoyt, this fascinating period suspenser is almost never screened theatrically: Don’t miss this one! NOT ON DVD. Discussion between film with Jean Porter Dmytryk, actress and wife of director Edward Dmytryk. Trona A man, disillusioned with his life and bored by his surroundings, one day mysteriously finds himself in a barren desert. After making his way back to the edge of civilization, where he encounters a handful of local characters, the man decides to abandon his former life and reinvent himself. The seductiveness of Trona comes from its compelling tone. The age-old storyline of a man lost and searching for something is rife with cliché – but in director David Fenster’s hands that storyline never flirts with pretension. Rather, it leads to a subtle comedic push and pull. As with the best of dry comedy, we can relate to the main character’s actions in the painfully small-town setting. David Nordstrom is riotously perfect as the deadpan lead, taking us through beautiful desert landscapes on a strange journey that reeks more of everyday frustration than academic existentialism. Showed at: CineVegas 2005 (U.S. Premiere) Dir. David Fenster, 2004, HDCAM, 63 min. Truck Turner The incomparable Isaac Hayes stars in this incredibly violent blaxploitation film about a bounty hunter out to capture bail jumpers. With Yaphet Kotto, Nichelle Nichols, and a fun Shaft-esque musical score from Hayes himself. Underworld Cinema: The Life and Work of J.X. Williams J. X. Williams was a legendary bottom-of-the-barrel director in the sixties and seventies, pushed even lower by his Commie leanings. One of the few surviving artifacts of Williams's tawdry career, "Peep Show" is a strange amalgam of dank noir drama and cheesy journalism, recounting Sam “Momo” Giancana's reign with the Outfit. Styled as a confessional by one of Momo's gunsels, the tabloid tell-all traces the Cosa Nostra's connections first to the fall of Cuba and Kennedy's mob-supported presidency, then to a spreading blight of drug trafficking that swept through Vegas on the way to the White House. The lineup of seedy suspects includes Frank Sinatra, crown crooner to the mob; Babs Deluxe, a voluptuous vixen who could shake it for a shakedown; J. Edgar Hoover, never prettier in a dress; and the anonymous mob enforcer who sings like a true Soprano. Noel Lawrence, the reigning J. X. Williams expert, will talk about this misfit director's overlooked and illicit career. As a special bonus, Lawrence will also present three short subjects from the J.X. filmography: "The Virgin Sacrifice", "Satan Claus", and "Psych-Burn". THE VAMPIRA SHOW With: longtime Simpsons writer Dana Gould MST 3000 creator Joel Hodgson Kim Smith: Mindbender & Lothar Saturday Night Live's Jerry Minor the tantalization of Sashay Nocturna and music from The Ghastly Ones Maila Nurmi, aka Vampira, the first TV horror host, died Jan. 10 of natural causes. Although she gave much to the horror community, she did not have very much money in the end. A coalition of fans is working to get Nurmi interred at Hollywood Forever cemetery, where she rightly belongs. A memorial fund has been set up to achieve this goal, and this show will benefit that cause. THE VELVET HUSTLER (KURENAI NO NAGARE BOSHI), 1967, Janus Films, 97 min. Although director Toshio Masuda lensed RED HARBOR (AKAI HATOBA), the original version of this tale with Yujiro Ishihara pre-BREATHLESS in 1958, this color remake shows a marked Godard/Belmondo influence. Tetsuya Watari is a free-wheeling hitman who whistles while he works and likes to sit in a rocking chair on an old pier when he’s not boffing babes or offing his expendable human targets. Tatsuya Fuji, who made a name for himself early on playing delinquent hoods in films like the STRAY CAT ROCK series, does a rare turn here as a dogged police detective. Ruriko Asaoka (GOYOKIN) and Kayo Matsuo (BABY CART AT THE RIVER STYX) are two of the women in Watari’s life – one of whom may end up causing his downfall. And last, but not least, one of our fave Japanese tough guys, Joe Shishido (BRANDED TO KILL), plays a mustachioed backstabber. Famous Nikkatsu production designer Takeo Kimura, renowned for his pioneering work with Seijun Suzuki in the 1960s, brought his amazing visual flourishes to both THE VELVET HUSTLER and GANGSTER VIP. In Japanese with English subtitles. The Verdict Don Siegel’s first directorial feature is a classic “locked room” mystery set in Victorian London with Greenstreet starring as a disgraced Scotland Yard Inspector, assisted by his drinking buddy Lorre, and racing the clock to prove a condemned man’s innocence. The film offers terrific, dark atmosphere, suspense and fine supporting performances by George Coulouris, Joan Lorring and Rosalind Ivan. The Verdict occupies a unique place in the history of Hollywood labor relations as it was made during the infamous strike riots at Warner Brothers, with the heavy overlay of London “fog “shrouding street sets that couldn’t be changed due to the work stop pages. Sadly, this was the last pairing of Lorre and Greenstreet. Dir. Don Siegel, 1946, 35mm, 86 min. The Virgin Spring (1960) This somber fable set in medieval Sweden tells of the brutal rape and murder of an innocent girl and the chilling revenge exacted upon her attackers by her deeply religious farming family. 89 mins. THE WEIRD LOVEMAKERS (KYONETSU NO KISETSU aka THE WARPED ONES), 1960, Janus Films, 75 min. Director Koreyoshi Kurahara was one of Nikkatsu Studios’ lower-profile trailblazers, a filmmaker enamored of jazz and neo-realist aesthetics, but no snob as far as occasionally helming genre efforts. There had been a number of Japanese "sun tribe" pictures in the mid-1950s, most notably CRAZED FRUIT and PUNISHMENT ROOM, two movies that scandalized parents and teachers with their depictions of an amoral younger generation besotted with hedonism. Although there was supposedly an industry wide moratorium on the genre due to the hue and cry, it was short-lived. By the dawn of the '60s, three more pioneering examples of the sub-genre had emerged, including this Kurahara effort as well as Seijun Suzuki’s EVERYTHING GOES WRONG and Nagisa Oshima’s CRUEL STORY OF YOUTH. Here, delinquent trio Tamio Kawaji, Eiji Go and Noriko Matsumoto victimize a straight young couple, reporter Hiroyuki Nagato (PIGS AND BATTLESHIPS) and fiancee Yuko Chiyo. Kawaji subsequently becomes obsessed with Chiyo, whom he makes pregnant. As a result, the simultaneously repulsed/attracted Chiyo forms an uneasy triangle with violent Kawaji and square, cuckolded beau Nagato. The Japanese title literally translates as "Season of Crazy Heat," and the film received a brief release in America in the mid-1960s from Radley Metzger’s Audubon Films under THE WEIRD LOVEMAKERS moniker. By any description, the film lives up to its many assorted titles. In Japanese with English subtitles. WICKED WOMAN, 1954, MGM Repertory, 77 min. Dir. Russell Rouse (THE OSCAR; THE WELL). In this racy little B-movie, scarlet woman Beverly Michaels (PICKUP) cons saloon owner Richard Egan (SLAUGHTER ON TENTH AVENUE) into bilking his boozy wife out of her dough, then toys with the affections of slavering devotee Percy Helton. But she plans on dumping them both and leaving a dust trail to Mexico. Michaels was definitely director Rouse’s kind of woman: they married after making this picture -- an extra twist to this juicy noir. "well-drawn characters, surprisingly salacious moments, and a sympathetic performance by hardboiled B-movie queen Beverly Michaels…provides many unexpected pleasures…the film is well-made enough to raise a few eyebrows today…" TV Guide NOT ON DVD WOMAN IN HIDING, 1950, Universal, 92 min. Dir. Michael Gordon (THE WEB). Noir City favorite Ida Lupino gives another superb performance, playing a successful career woman who marries Mr. Wrong (Steven McNally) and finds herself desperately trying to evade his plans to dispose of her and take over the business. Stylish direction from the grandfather of Joseph Gordon-Levitt (THE LOOKOUT) and fabulous camerawork from the legendary William Daniels (THE NAKED CITY) highlight this long-missing (and underrated) thriller, presented in a gloriously pristine new print from Universal Pictures! Co-starring Howard Duff (who was Lupino’s real-life hubby at the time). Screenplay by Oscar Saul and Roy Huggins (who created "The Fugitive" and "77 Sunset Strip" TV series). NOT ON DVD WRONG IS RIGHT When Richard Brooks' star-studded adaptation of Charles McCarry's spy novel The Better Angels came out in 1982 it was roundly dismissed as a confused jumble. From the hindsight of 2008, it looks like the STRANGELOVE of its era. So many aspects of this film have come true, it's up there with NETWORK as a predictor of the future, our sorry present. Sean Connery stars as a globe-trotting tv reporter who's tracking a terrorist dealing nuclear weapons in the mideast. Along the way we meet a President who goes to war to boost his ratings, a (Condi-like) Vice President, CIA and FBI figures who are so broadly caricatured they seemed divorced from reality in 1982-- but who closely resemble figures we now see on the news every day! Suffice it to say the climax involves the World Trade Center. One of the all-star ensemble will join us--John Saxon! Zulu Stanley Baker and Michael Caine star in this epic about British colonial troops under siege by thousands of Zulu warriors, based on a true incident from 1879. "...blazing action along with unforgettable displays of bravery, courage and honour...The incredible thing about Zulu is that although it contains all these long forgotten elements it has barely dated at all. The set pieces, particularly those in the burning hospital building and on the perimeter walls of the isolated outpost, are as exciting as any war/action film of the last decade" (Gordon Johnston, Edinburgh University Film Society).