a highly-opinionated selection of things happening around town, and sometimes out of town. this month's page here.
sat. july 21 respect yourself: the stax records story 9 PM @ egyptian theatre first men in the moon 2 PM @ egyptian theatre woman of the year @ lacma desk set 9:35 PM @ lacma suspiria @ cinespia @ hollywood forever aggrolites @ getty center rock'n'roll adventure kids @ mr. t's bowl sonic youth, dntel @ urban outfitters santa monica angie waller @ telic sun. july 22 stax revue 1967, wattstax @ egyptian theatre the chaplin mutuals part 1 @ 8 PM @ silent move theatre qui, chuck dukowski sextet @ safari sam's dead meadow - matinee show @ little radio mae shi @ ucb theatre tue. july 24 frankenstein's castle of freaks, the sinful dwarf @ new beverly theatre martin rev, fuxa @ silverlake lounge wed. july 25 martin rev, fuxa @ knitting factory thu. july 26 deadlier than the male, lightning bolt @ egyptian theatre harry langdon's the chaser 8 PM @ silent movie theatre zach galifianakis @ largo fri. july 27 seconds FREE 8:30 PM @ hammer museum courtyard in the beginning was the image 7 PM @ egyptian theatre wet hot american summer MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre sylvia scarlett 9:25 PM @ lacma melvins @ troubadour twenty thousand leagues under the sea (1916) 8:15 @ old town music hall zach galifianakis @ largo sat. july 28 out 1 episodes 1-4 @ 2 PM (approx. 400 min.) @ ucla film archive a hard day's night, how i won the war @ aero theatre evil dead 2 MIDNIGHT @ rialto theatre the african queen @ lacma earthless @ the echo bad dudes @ the smell his girl friday @ cinespia @ hollywood forever twenty thousand leagues under the sea (1916) 2:30, 8:15 @ old town music hall rock'n'roll adventure kids @ the scene they live MIDNIGHT MOVIE @ new beverly theatre sun. july 29 out 1 episodes 5-8 @ 2 PM (approx. 350 min.) @ ucla film archive the party, skidoo @ aero theatre twenty thousand leagues under the sea (1916) 2:30 @ old town music hall dead meadow @ the echo tue. july 31 atlantic records: the house that ahmet built @ egyptian theatre wed. aug. 1 all my loving @ egyptian theatre the virgin spring, wild strawberries @ new beverly theatre thu. aug. 2 marnie stern @ the echo l.a. gentlemen callers @ the scene the virgin spring, wild strawberries @ new beverly theatre fri. aug 3 samson and delilah FREE 8:30 PM @ hammer museum courtyard adam's rib @ lacma state of the union 9:20 PM @ lacma earthless @ safari sam's mika miko @ the echo sat. aug. 4 battleship potemkin, a trip to mars @ ucla film archive harold and maude MIDNIGHT @ rialto theatre peewee's big adventure @ cinespia @ hollywood forever qui @ the echo the flakes @ satisfaction @ the bordello languis, mia doi todd @ tonalism @ farmlab sun. aug. 5 the last american virgin, fast times at ridgemont high @ new beverly theatre mon. aug. 6 manda bala @ ucla film archive the last american virgin, fast times at ridgemont high @ new beverly theatre tue. aug. 7 song of the scarlet flower, the cross of love @ ucla film archive undercurrent 1 PM @ lacma the last american virgin, fast times at ridgemont high @ new beverly theatre buzzcocks @ spaceland wed. aug. 8 cabiria @ ucla film archive out of sight, the underneath @ new beverly theatre fri. aug. 10 films of stan brakhage @ ucla film archive holiday @ lacma bringing up baby 9:15 PM @ lacma kraig grady @ il corral out of sight, the underneath @ new beverly theatre sat. aug. 11 the spy in black, the search @ ucla james bridges theatre summertime @ lacma suddenly last summer 9:20 PM @ lacma saccharine trust @ mr. t's bowl revenge of the nerds MIDNIGHT MOVIE @ new beverly theatre sun. aug. 12 "i" of gilles deleuze from a to z - film screening organized by semiotext(e) 8:30pm @ mandrake bar hot fuzz, shaun of the dead @ new beverly theatre mon. aug. 13 hot fuzz, shaun of the dead @ new beverly theatre tue. aug. 14 one am radio @ the echo hot fuzz, shaun of the dead @ new beverly theatre wed. aug. 15 the old weird america @ getty center plagues & pleasures on the salton sea 8 PM FREE @ 7 dudley cinema thu. aug. 16 detroit cobras, the willowz @ troubadour fri. aug. 17 the big parade, born to be bad @ ucla film archive altman's the long goodbye MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre guess who's coming to dinner 9:20 PM @ lacma dr. strangelove, being there @ new beverly theatre sat. aug. 18 people on sunday, mauvaise graine @ ucla film archive long day's journey into night @ lacma dr. strangelove, being there @ new beverly theatre sun. aug. 19 the clinging vine @ filmradar silents under the stars field trip @ paramount ranch rolling thunder, taxi driver @ new beverly theatre mon. aug. 20 rolling thunder, taxi driver @ new beverly theatre tue. aug. 21 irma la douce @ ucla film archive grindhouse film festival @ new beverly theatre thu. aug. 23 mae shi @ troubadour fri. aug. 24 one two three, love in the afternoon @ ucla film archive bert jansch, meg baird @ troubadour sat. aug. 25 fuck yeah fest trainspotting MIDNIGHT @ rialto theatre vanishing point MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre sun. aug. 26 fuck yeah fest hamlet 7 PM, the floor below @ ucla film archive the thing, invasion of the body snatchers @ new beverly theatre mon. aug. 27 the thing, invasion of the body snatchers @ new beverly theatre tue. aug. 28 ganja and hess, love massacre @ ucla film archive the thing, invasion of the body snatchers @ new beverly theatre wed. aug. 29 the private life of sherlock holmes, witness for the prosecution @ ucla film archive el topo, the holy mountain @ new beverly theatre thu. aug. 30 el topo, the holy mountain @ new beverly theatre fri. aug. 31 el topo, the holy mountain @ new beverly theatre sat. sept. 1 el topo, the holy mountain @ new beverly theatre fri. sept. 7 2001 MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre mon. sept. 17 the clientele @ the wiltern wed. sept. 26 upsilon acrux @ the scene fri. sept. 28 dead alive MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre low @ troubadour sat. sept. 29 low @ troubadour wed. oct. 3 her space holiday @ the echo wed. oct. 10 mt. eerie/the microphones @ troubadour fri. oct. 19 black lips @ troubadour sat. oct. 20 black lips @ the echo fri. oct. 27 creature from the black lagoon in 3-d @ 2 PM, 8 PM @ alex theatre thu. nov. 8 dos @ knitting factory WHAT IT IS: Adam's Rib 1949/b&w/100 min. | Scr: Ruth Gordon, Garson Kanin; dir: George Cukor; w/ Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Judy Holliday, Tom Ewell, David Wayne, Jean Hagen Married lawyers move the battle of the sexes from the bedroom to the courtroom when Amanda (Hepburn) decides to defend the dumb blond (Holliday) that Adam (Tracy) is prosecuting for the attempted murder of her two-timing husband (Wayne). The script has great sophistication and the Hepburn-Tracy characters have evolved both financially and intellectually, a fact their postwar audience would appreciate. It was Cukor, however, who introduced realism into the comedy by attending actual murder trials and shooting on location in New York. Cukor explained the film's success this way: "It was human . . . First you've got to be funny, then to elevate the comedy, you've got to be human. That's why anything that works as a comedy should also work as a tragedy, and vice versa." The African Queen 1951/color/105 min. | Scr: John Huston, James Agee; dir: John Huston; w/ Hepburn, Humphrey Bogart, Robert Morley Set in the Belgian Congo during World War I, The African Queen is a unique blend of comedy, adventure, and romance. Hepburn plays Rose Sayer, the prim sister of a missionary who has been murdered by the Germans, while Bogart is Charlie Allnut, a hard-drinking riverboat skipper who offers Rose a means of escape. Heading downriver in Allnut's decrepit craft, the odd couple survives mosquitoes, leeches, angry natives, engine trouble, and a German gunboat, by which time they are on a first-name basis and madly in love. Illnesses and other hardships afflicted the entire production—only Huston and Bogart did not suffer from dysentery, prompting Hepburn to speculate that "they had so lined their insides with alcohol no bug could live." Huston's decision to shoot on location paid off, however. The film has an atmosphere and authenticity impossible to achieve on a set. ALL MY LOVING, 1968, BBC, 52 min. Filmmaker Tony Palmer (a protege of Ken Russell) rose to a personal challenge in 1967 from John Lennon & Paul McCartney that he should document the cultural- revolution-in-progress by making a film about The Beatles and their counter-culture peers and pals who were transforming pop into rock. Palmer’s ground-breaking film captured The Beatles, Cream, Hendrix, Floyd, Who, Burdon, Donovan, Zappa and more in a stunning tour-de-force (all specially-shot) that outraged the UK establishment and was deemed far too controversial for the USA. "This is just great! Exactly what we meant" said McCartney of the film in 1968. "One of our Great Treasures" says Pete Townshend in 2007. NEVER BEEN ON US TV & NOT ON DVD ATLANTIC RECORDS: THE HOUSE THAT AHMET BUILT, 2007, Thirteen/WNET’s American Masters, 120 mins. Dir. Susan Steinberg. The remarkable story of Ahmet Ertegun and the influential recording empire he created is told by filming Ertegun reliving his experiences and memories with scores of pals from Jagger, Clapton, Plant & Page to Ray Charles, Aretha and Bette Midler (who also narrates). The story is illustrated with stunning long-lost music performances from virtually every Atlantic artist of note. The film traces Ertegun from his early days in America as an Embassy brat son of the Turkish Ambassador through his discovery of blues and jazz (and wild women) in the dens of Harlem - while he was still a schoolboy! Then his launch of Atlantic and the torrent of R&B, soul, rock, prog-rock and pop music that has streamed from the company over the past 60 years. The film has already been hailed as a tour-de-force. It has to be experienced on the big screen to be truly savored. There will be several Atlantic artists and friends of Ahmet Ertegun attending to pay tribute to him. BATTLESHIP POTEMKIN (BRONENOSETS POTYOMKIN) (1925, Russia) Directed by Sergei Eisenstein Eisenstein's masterful exercise in revolutionary propaganda and montage chronicles a 1905 naval mutiny that ignited a wave of rebellion against imperial Russia's Tsarist regime. The famous "Odessa steps" sequence remains a landmark of cinematic history. This print comprises the most accurate recreation of the Soviet premiere version to date, and includes Leon Trotsky's original introduction, excised by Stalinist censors. Live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. Simultaneous translation of intertitles will be provided. BEING THERE One of Peter Sellers' last films, Being There is also considered by many to be his very best. A sublime satire of media saturation, based on the novel by Jerzy Kosinski, with Sellers delivering a perfect, nuanced performance as a simple-minded gardener who knows only what he sees on television. His hypnotized demeanor is mistaken for brilliance as he becomes a major political player in Washington. Shirley MacLaine and Melvyn Douglas offer fine supporting performances. THE BIG PARADE (1925) Directed by King Vidor This groundbreaking silent film follows a privileged young man (John Gilbert) who, caught up in the patriotic fervor upon America’s entry into World War I, enlists in the Army. He is soon tossed headfirst into the horrors of trench combat in France, finding peace only in the arms of a local woman (Renée Adorée). Director Vidor’s unflinching examination of war’s human and emotional costs became the second highest grossing silent film of all time, and influenced such later works as Lewis’s Milestone’s 1930 adaptation of All Quiet on the Western Front. MGM. Based on the play by Joseph Farnham. Scenario: Harry Behn, Laurence Stallings. Cinematographer: John Arnold, Charles Van Enger. Editor: Hugh Wynn. Cast: John Gilbert, Renee Adoree, Hobart Bosworth, Karl Dane. with English subtitles. 35mm, silent, (20 fps), 150 min. BORN TO BE BAD (1950, United States) Directed by Nicholas Ray Director Ray's melodramatic potboiler pits a pair of outgunned gents against seductress Christabel Caine, played by Joan Fontaine as a modern-day Lucrezia Borgia. After stealing her cousin's wealthy fiancé, Curtis (Scott), Christabel decides to spend her new life as one of the idle rich pursuing masculine novelist Nick Bradley (Ryan) on the side. Screenplay: Charles Schnee, Edith R. Sommer, George Oppenheimer, Robert Soderberg. Cast: Joan Fontaine, Robert Ryan, Zachary Scott. 35mm, 90 min. Bringing Up Baby 1938/b&w/103 min. | Scr: Dudley Nichols, Hagar Wilde; dir: Howard Hawks; w/ Hepburn, Cary Grant, Charles Ruggles, Barry Fitzgerald, May Robson When mild-mannered paleontologist David Huxley (Grant) crosses paths with scatterbrained heiress Susan Vance (Hepburn), he finds his sedate routine disrupted by embarrassing mishaps and unwelcome romantic feelings—minor irritations compared to the pandemonium that ensues after David meets Baby, Susan's pet leopard. The lure of "I Can't Give You Anything but Love, Baby," the leopard's favorite song, is no match for its newfound interest in dinosaur bones. As the good doctor's career crumbles, director Hawks ups the torture until David recognizes that eccentricity is preferable to conformity and starts to enjoy life. As the snake in David's prehistoric garden, Hepburn has never been funnier or sexier, and the fact that Susan is truly mad, even dangerous, just adds to the fun. CABIRIA (1914, Italy) Directed by Giovanni Pastrone This genre-defining epic dazzled audiences around the world and put Italian cinema on the map with its spectacular sets and innovative camera technique. The story follows Cabiria, an aristocratic Roman child who is kidnapped and taken to Carthage. Fulvius Axilla, a Roman soldier, and his slave Maciste pursue her into enemy territory. In person: Stefano Boni, National Museum of Cinema, Turin Live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. Simultaneous translation of the Italian intertitles will be provided. The Chaplin Mutuals, Part 1 In 1916, Charlie Chaplin signed a contract to make 12 films for the Mutual Film Corporation that are considered his true blossoming as a major artist. The contract allowed him to exercise complete control and artistic freedom over the comedies, inspiring the 27-year-old Chaplin to be as funny and daring as he could. In his autobiography, Chaplin looked back fondly on the challenge the “Mutuals” brought to him, and stated it was perhaps the happiest period of his career. He was still at the beginning, with only one thing on his mind: to be the funniest person ever to be seen on film! Come see him succeed! This is the first half of a complete retrospective by the Silent Movie Theatre, and will include the following shorts: The Immigrant, The Adventurer, The Cure, Easy Street, The Count, and The Vagabond. THE CLINGING VINE (1926). with Leatrice Joy and Tom Moore. Mannish ultra-efficient A.B. is the real force behind the Bancroft paint business. But on a weekend house-party when she overhears the boss's grandson (Jimmy)'s unflattering opinion of her (unseen) lack of charms, she's hurt. Jimmy's grandmother takes her under her wing, makes her over, and teaches her to flutter her eyelashes and only say the two phrases to win a man: "Do go on!" and "Aren't you wonderful?". And Jimmy falls hard, not knowing his darling girl is the dreaded A.B. But can A.B. maintain her girlish guise while setting Jimmy on the right track to financial security and a proposal? Featuring live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. THE CROSS OF LOVE (RAKKAUDEN RISTI) (1946, Finland) Directed by Teuvo Tulio The Cross of Love revisits the oft-told tale of the innocent country lass (here played by Finnish star Regina Linnanheimo) coming to grief in the big city. Tulio's style darkened in the 1940s, as this example shows. The sexual frankness of his films and their limpid Scandinavian naturalism were overlaid with a mannered expressionistic touch, and the films accordingly turned from touching morality tales to lurid melodrama, reminiscent (to an American viewer) of a mixture of Stroheim, Sternberg and Cecil B. DeMille. Screenplay: Nisse Him. Cast: Regina Linnanheimo, Oscar Tengström, Ville Salminen. Presented in Finnish dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 98 min. DEADLIER THAN THE MALE, 1966, 98 min. Dir. Ralph Thomas. An updated-to-the-1960’s incarnation of British Bulldog Drummond (Richard Johnson) takes on megalomaniac Nigel Green and his sadistic pair of scantily clad female assassins (Elke Sommer and Sylvia Koscina) as they try to corner the world industrial and oil markets, brutally eliminating all rivals. Fast-moving, beautifully shot in Technicolor on UK and Mediterranean locations, DEADLIER is an extremely enjoyable Bond-style thriller. Watch for the great opening where bikini-clad Sommer and Koscina emerge from the sea with spearguns and the jolting climax where villain Green attempts to defeat Drummond with his giant mechanical chess set. The theme song is co-written and sung by Scott Walker, and the script was co-written by Hammer Studio veteran, Jimmy Sangster. Desk Set 1957/color/103 min./CinemaScope | Scr: Henry Ephron, Phoebe Ephron; dir: Walter Lang; w/ Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Joan Blondell, Gig Young After five years without a Hepburn-Tracy movie, the pair reappeared in this glossy film, their first in color and CinemaScope. Their battle of the sexes this time unfolds in the corporate workplace, specifically the Federal Broadcasting Network. Bunny Watson (Hepburn), the brilliant mother hen of the research division, sounds the alarm when efficiency engineer Richard Sumner (Tracy) comes nosing around the office with drawings for a computer the size of Rockefeller Center. The direction may be stagy, but today Desk Set emits a nostalgic glow: the mid-1950s decor is terrific; Hepburn looks smashing in her tailored wardrobe; and the stars' pitch-perfect timing and mellow intimacy lend a fairy tale aura to its love-after-forty plot. FILMS OF STAN BRAKHAGE (United States) Directed by Stan Brakhage In 2005, the Academy Film Archive began a long-term, comprehensive restoration project on the films of avant-garde legend Stan Brakhage. With up to 400 films included, this is no minor undertaking, and numerous unexpected challenges have presented themselves. This program will feature newly restored prints of classics like Murder Psalm (1981), The Riddle of Lumen(1972) and Blue Moses (1962), as well as a selection of rarities that have seldom been seen. Preservationist Mark Toscano will will also speak about the restoration project, and present some photos showing Brakhage's utterly unique approach to constructing his films, and discuss the preservation complications that arise as a result. FIRST MEN IN THE MOON, 1964, Sony Repertory, 103 min. In director Nathan Juran’s extremely entertaining adaptation of H.G. Wells’ novel, turn-of-the-century British inventor Lionel Jeffries enlists Edward Judd and fiancée Martha Hyer in his scheme to reach the moon using anti-gravity paint. Once the trio hits the lunar landscape, they’re captured by a weird subterranean insect race, the Selenites, and we’re treated to some of Ray Harryhausen’s most enjoyable special effects. An infectious blend of Victorian sci-fi, sweet humor and high adventure. Preceded by a film reel and clip show. Discussion following with visual effects artist and producer Ray Harryhausen. A co-presentation with The Art Directors Guild. THE FLOOR BELOW (1918, United States) Directed by Clarence G. Badger Queen of Slapstick Mabel Normand gets to play detective in this Cinderella story about a hardworking but hapless newspaper copygirl who goes hunting for a burglar only to find her Prince Charming. One of only three surviving features Normand made for Sam Goldwyn (after her scandalous departure from fiancé Mack Sennett's Keystone Studios), the film reveals Normand's knack for infusing slapstick with witty and nuanced character detail not possible in the breakneck capers she made for Sennett. Live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla Producer: Samuel Goldwyn. Screenwriter: Elaine Sterne. Cinematographer: Oliver T. Marsh. Cast: Mabel Normand, Tom Moore, Helen Dahl. 35mm, silent, 18 FPS, 82 min. FRANKENSTEIN'S CASTLE OF FREAKS Dr. Frankenstein is back in business with a towering menace named Goliath, but he's not the only crazy creature running about. There's Neanderthal-type Ook and a horny, necrophilic dwarf named Ganz. As if that's not enough excitement, there's also the doc's buxom beauty, Krista, whose hobbies include bathing in milk. Monsters, nudity, a corpse-loving dwarf...what more could you want in a movie? Rossano Brazzi heads a cast that includes an actor billed as "Boris Lugosi." GANJA AND HESS (1973, United States) Directed by Bill Gunn Though praised at the 1973 Cannes Film Festival, Bill Gunn's independent production was aggressively recut and sold to the public as the next Blacula. Far from a horror-blaxpoitation variant, Gunn's film is an experimental narrative suffused with gothic decadence and ambient mysticism. Soon after his introduction to troubled minister-cum-chauffeur George Meda (Gunn), affluent anthropologist Hess Green (Duane Jones, the hero of Romero's original Night of the Living Dead) becomes infected with a vampiric bloodlust dating back to the ancient African tribe of Myrthia. When Meda's seductive wife Ganja (Marlene Clark) contacts Green in search of her mercurial husband, a tragic union of the undead is forged. Cast: Duane Jones, Marlene Clark, Bill Gunn, Sam Waymon, Leonard Jackson, Richard Harrow. 35mm, 110 min. Guess Who's Coming to Dinner 1967/color/108 min. | Scr: William Rose; dir: Stanley Kramer; w/ Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Sidney Poitier, Katharine Houghton Here is another Hepburn-Tracy comedy brimming with pathos, another dinner party fraught with peril—this time to welcome home their daughter, whose surprise guest is her fiancé, a black doctor. Although in its day a daring subject for a Hollywood film—and notwithstanding Rose's script and Kramer's skillful direction—the theme of interracial marriage is no match for the emotional charge of watching Hepburn as she watches Tracy give his last performance. Released after the actor's death, the film became Hepburn's highest-grossing film, garnered ten Academy Award nominations, and earned Hepburn her second Oscar for best actress. She acknowledged the honor with a simple statement: "I presume this award is meant for both of us." HAMLET (1921, Germany) Directed by Svend Gade and Heinz Schall Copenhagen-born silent siren Asta Nielsen reinvents the doomed Danish prince as a proto-flapper in this loose adaptation of the Shakespeare classic, which finds Queen Gertrude (Mathilde Brandt) raising her daughter as a boy to secure succession to the throne. Long seen only in black-and-white, this print, struck by the German Film Institute and ZDF in cooperation with ARTE, restores the original tint German-language-distribution version of the film. Live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla Screenplay: Erwin Gepard. Cast: Asta Nielsen, Paul Conradi, Mathilde Brandt. with English subtitles. 35mm, silent, w/ German Intertitles, 18 FPS, 110 min. Harry Langdon's The Chaser A henpecked husband is court-ordered to switch places with his wife in Harry Langdon’s strange, black comedy. The Chaser sets Langdon’s babyfaced manchild loose in a battle-of-the-sexes send-up that includes everything from crossdressing and suicide attempts to a bravura car chase. Langdon—already a successful vaudeville and circus performer became a popular icon in the silent films of Frank Capra and Mack Sennett. This screening of The Chaser marks a rare chance to see Langdon’s work as a director—a career that unfortunately never took off. The feature will be accompanied by a live musician and preceded by a program of short films. Holiday 1938/b&w/93 min. | Scr: Sidney Buchman, Donald Ogden Stewart; dir: George Cukor; w/ Hepburn, Cary Grant, Doris Nolan, Lew Ayres John Case (Grant) is a poor boy engaged to an heiress, but he soon finds himself falling for his fiancée's unconventional sister (Hepburn). Based on a Philip Barry play from the 1920s, Cukor's film is set a decade later, and though the characters deliver the same sparkling dialogue and loll about the same Fifth Avenue townhouse, the Depression is just beyond the walls and the glittering, polished surfaces are undermined by a vein of real feeling. In On Cukor, the late critic Gavin Lambert called Holiday "one of my favorites. It creates a genre all its own. Neither drama or comedy, but something in between." HOW I WON THE WAR, 1967, MGM Repertory, 110 min. Maverick director Richard Lester (A HARD DAY’S NIGHT and HELP!) recruited John Lennon (in his first and only solo acting role) for this wildly surreal satire on war movies, featuring Michael Crawford (THE KNACK) as a blissfully unaware idiot charged with building a cricket pitch behind enemy lines during World War II. Although nominally set in the 1940’s, HOW I WON THE WAR exudes 1960’s anti-establishment tone, featuring abrupt time shifts, jump-cutting and Lester’s patented blend of biting wit and surreal slapstick that presaged Monty Python. Incidentally - Lester always chafes when this film is simplistically described as "an anti-war movie". As he explains: "It’s an ‘anti-WAR-MOVIE’ movie." With Jack MacGowran. IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE IMAGE, 2006, Sticking Place Films, 200 min. Dir. Paul Cronin. Riveting new documentary about the iconic UK filmmaker, Peter Whitehead who filmed the Stones, Zeppelin, Floyd, Hendrix et al reveals a character far more fascinating than Mick Jagger, Jimmy Page, Syd Barrett and Jimi Hendrix combined! Documentary maker Paul Cronin includes fascinating new interview sequences with Whitehead, archive TV footage and rarities from all his rock films. The film lasts 200 minutes – yet it goes by in a flash – and leaves you wanting more. (It's the exact opposite of today's blockbusters!) This film will be screened in the intimate-size Steven Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian. There is very limited seating! So book early! NOT ON DVD INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, 1978, MGM/UA, 115 min. Dir. Philip Kaufman. A deftly handled, scary re-imagining of both Jack Finney’s source novel and Don Siegel’s original 1956 movie, with Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, and Leonard Nimoy trying to deal with the sudden influx of body-snatching alien seed pods in the San Francisco Bay area. With Jeff Goldblum, Veronica Cartwright. IRMA LA DOUCE (1963, United States) Directed by Billy Wilder Jack Lemmon plays the naïve gendarme who falls hard for Shirley MacLaine as the title character, a Parisian streetwalker with a heart of gold. The script is an adaptation of a French stage musical with the songs removed, but the film earned its popularity with its Gallic charm and surging widescreen cinematography. THE LAST AMERICAN VIRGIN (from IMDB) The friendship of a group of young friends struggling with teen sex, drugs, and work is jeopardized by a romantic interest which may turn pals into bitter rivals. LIGHTNING BOLT, 1966, 90 min. "Submit to the master or be frozen forever in his cold-storage harem!" screamed the tagline. There were legions of spy films lensed in the wake of 007, but no country produced more (or stranger!) entries than European genre champions, Italy. Antonio Margheritti (CASTLE OF BLOOD; WILD WILD PLANET) turned out this surprisingly entertaining and good-looking, low budget Bond knock-off. Anthony Eisley is a wisecracking, womanizing, Madison Avenue-type spy trying to bring down corpulent evil genius (and beer manufacturer!) Folco Lulli, with the help of his boss Diana Lorys and girl-in-jeopardy Wandisa Guida. Absurd humor (Eisley repeatedly tries to buy off villainous henchmen by writing them checks!), impressive production design (Lulli’s underwater city) and plenty of fast-paced, albeit nonsensical, action pepper the film. In the US, drive-in distributors tried to capitalize on the Bond craze by titling the film LIGHTNING BOLT (get it? THUNDERBALL?), and in Italy and Spain it was called OPERATION GOLDMAN (in reference to GOLDFINGER). NOT ON DVD Long Day's Journey into Night 1962/b&w/171 min. plus intermission | Scr: Eugene O'Neill; dir: Sidney Lumet; w/ Hepburn, Ralph Richardson, Jason Robards, Dean Stockwell Eugene O'Neill's final play, produced posthumously on Broadway in 1956, depicts a day in the life of his own family at a rambling seaside house in 1912. Richardson is majestic as the egotistical, miserly actor James Tyrone, who has wasted his talent and poisoned the lives of his two sons—the elder (Robards) an actor drowning in alcohol, the younger (Stockwell) a poet dying of consumption. His wife, Mary (Hepburn), is an angry, ghostly presence in their lives, a former beauty destroyed by morphine and haunted by memories of her convent days. Lumet rehearsed the cast for three weeks and with cinematographer Boris Kaufman ( On the Waterfront), shot the play in sequence and used close-ups sparingly. The character exhausted Hepburn, but many critics declared Mary Tyrone her greatest role. As Pauline Kael wrote, "She surpasses herself: the most beautiful screen comedienne of the '30s and '40s becomes our greatest screen tragedienne." LOVE IN THE AFTERNOON (1957) Directed by Billy Wilder Love in the Afternoon finds Wilder in a relaxed, full romantic mood – though still with an edgy undercurrent. A visibly aging Gary Cooper plays drolly against type as a wealthy American playboy engaged in midday trysts at his swank Parisian hotel suite. Audrey Hepburn co-stars as the cello student who gets snagged in the wily seducer's web, and Maurice Chevalier turns in a spirited performance as Hepburn's overprotective gumshoe father. Echoing the blithe, cosmopolitan spirit of Ernst Lubitsch’s comedies, this adroitly-executed romantic escapade shows Cooper still radiating a serene charisma at the twilight of his career (complete with sly references to Cooper's earliest films, especially Morocco and Lubitsch's Bluebeard's Eighth Wife). Allied Artists. Based on the novel by Claude Anet. Producer: Billy Wilder. Screenwriter: Billy Wilder, I.A.L. Diamond. Editor: Léonide Azar. Choreographer: William C. Mellor. Cast: Gary Cooper, Audrey Hepburn, Maurice Chevalier. Presented in English dialogue. 35mm, 125 min. LOVE MASSACRE (1981, Hong Kong) Directed by Patrick Tam Set in a surprisingly minimalist San Francisco, Patrick Tam's stylish slasher movie manages to evoke both Antonioni and Mario Bava in this tale of a ravishing young co-ed (Brigitte Lin) whose studly boyfriend (Chang Kuo-chu) turns into a demented stalker after the suicide of his sister. Culling together material from Mandarin and Cantonese dialect sources, this new print is the most complete version of this classic of Chinese New Wave formalism available in the West to date. Screenplay: Joyce Chan. Cast: Brigitte Lin, Charlie Chin, Chang Kuo-chu. Presented in Cantonese dialogue with English and Chinese subtitles. 35mm, 91 min. MANDA BALA (SEND A BULLET) (2007, United States) Directed by Jason Kohn Former Errol Morris protégé Jason Kohn's directorial debut is a fascinating, provocative and highly original exploration of violent crime and government corruption in modern Brazil. Winner of the documentary Grand Jury Prize at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival, Manda Bala is a breathtaking portrait of Sao Paolo, where crimefighting has spawned an entire industry: car bulletproofing and helicopter shuttles to combat carjackings, and plastic surgery specialists who re-create the missing ears of ransomed kidnapping victims. Format TBA, 85 min. MAUVAISE GRAINE (1934, France) Directed by Billy Wilder and Alexander Esway Between leaving Germany and coming to the US, Wilder stopped in France long enough to direct his first feature. The result is a comic thriller about a happy-go-lucky young man who joins a gang of auto thieves rather than get a real job. Please note: This print is not subtitled. A detailed written synopsis will be provided. Screenwriter: Billy Wilder, Max Kolpée, Hans G. Lustig, Claude-André Puget. Cast: Pierre Mingand, Danielle Darrieux, Jean Wall. Presented in French dialogue. 35mm, 77 min. The Old, Weird America: Harry Smith's Anthology of American Folk Music Prepare for an eclectic journey through The Old, Weird America. Rani Singh's new documentary film tracks the history of Harry Smith's Anthology of American Folk Music from the initial compilation of 78s from rural Americana in the 1920s and '30s to its release on Folkways Records in 1952. Instrumental in helping inspire the urban folk revival of the 1960s, the Anthology continues to influence modern music. An incredible set of interviewees, including Elvis Costello, John Cohen, David Johansen, and Greil Marcus, reveal the lasting impact of the Anthology and the remarkable personality of Harry Smith. Join us for a wild ride through a remarkable musical landscape. ONE, TWO, THREE (1961, United States) Directed by Billy Wilder Billy Wilder returns to divided Berlin, the setting for his 1948 A Foreign Affair, for this breakneck farce featuring a brash Coca-Cola executive (Cagney) trying to crack the East Berlin soft-drink market. Meanwhile, his boss' daughter sneaks past Checkpoint Charlie and falls in love with an ardent young Communist. Screenwriter: Billy Wilder, I.A.L. Diamond. Cast: James Cagney, Horst Buchholz, Pamela Tiffin. 35mm, 115 min. OUT 1 The Los Angeles premiere of Jacques Rivette’s legendary twelve-and-a-half-hour epic from 1971, in a new 16mm print with electronically projected English subtitles. Jean-Pierre Léaud and Bulle Ogier star in this shaggy-dog tale, seemingly about two theater groups rehearsing Aeschylus, that takes off into a complex mystery loosely adapted from Balzac (with a nod to Lewis Carroll). Jonathan Rosenbaum hails it as “the definitive film about the 1960s counterculture...its deliriously euphoric collective utopias, its ultimate descent into solitude, madness, and dissolution.” In Rivette’s words, “the fiction swallows everything up and then self-destructs.” THE PARTY, 1968, MGM Repertory, 99 min. Dir. Blake Edwards. For most of its length, THE PARTY is a wonderfully restrained homage to Jacques Tati, with Peter Sellers in perfect pitch as an awestruck Indian actor who disrupts a chic Hollywood gathering with the help of French songbird Claudine Longet. The final 15 minutes prove that any great joke deserves a totally outrageous punchline. Look for Steve Franken as an inebriated waiter and Denny Miller as a hilarious rhinestone cowboy. Cinematography by the great Lucien Ballard (THE WILD ONE). PEOPLE ON SUNDAY (MENSCHEN AM SONNTAG) (1929, Germany) Directed by Robert Siodmak and Edgar G. Ulmer Perhaps the last important German silent film, People on Sunday sets a slice-of-life story against the dazzlingly detailed backdrop of Weimar-era Berlin. The original subtitle, "A Film Without Actors," signals the semi-documentary intent: a city symphony orchestrated around a handful of ordinary characters enjoying a typical summer idyll on their day off. Live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. Simultaneous translation of the intertitles will be provided. Screenwriter: Curt Siodmak, Robert Siodmak, Billy Wilder. Cast: Brigitte Borchert, Christl Ehlers, Wolfgang von Waltershausen, Erwin Splettstosser. with German subtitles. 35mm, silent, 21 FPS, 76 min. PLAGUES & PLEASURES ON THE SALTON SEA ('06, 71m) at 9pm - Chris Meltzer and Jeff Springer cover the historical, economic, political, and environmental issues that face the sea, and offer up an offbeat portrait of the eccentric and individualistic people who populate its shores. Hair-raising and hilarious, part history lesson, part cautionary tale and part portrait of one of the strangest communities you’ve ever seen, this is the American Dream gone as stinky as a dead carp. "Coaxing equal parts affection and revulsion while illuminating a little corner of California" -SF Guardian. John Waters narrates. Filmmakers will be present. Plus: DESERT DREAMERS ('06, 54m) at 8pm - Frank Suffert's life affirming portrait of Mojave Desert's eccentrics (artists, UFO seekers, Miracle makers and a burlesque dancer) following their dreams of freedom. THE PRIVATE LIFE OF SHERLOCK HOLMES (1970, United States) Directed by Billy Wilder Shot in London and planned as a sweeping four-part, three-hour magnum opus, Wilder's version of Conan Doyle's detective focuses on the man's loneliness, his friendships and enmities and hints of sexual ambiguity. Wilder was forced by his producers to trim Sherlock Holmes to two hours, but it remains a haunting film, a glimpse of aspects of Wilder's filmmaking not often seen. Screenwriter: Billy Wilder, I.A.L. Diamond. Cast: Robert Stephens, Colin Blakely, Genevive Page, Christopher Lee. 35mm, 125 min. RESPECT YOURSELF: THE STAX RECORDS STORY, 2007, Tremolo Productions, 115 min. Dir. Morgan Neville. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of Stax Records, this brand new documentary created for PBS is the authoritative history of the rise of the Memphis soul label that changed the world. The film is jammed with amazing archive rarities. Live performances, forgotten TV appearances, home movies, news footage, lost recordings of all the legendary Stax artists from Otis Redding and Isaac Hayes to Sam & Dave and The Staples Singers. The film is also the story of the civil rights movement and how the music created at Stax mirrored the glories and pains of that struggle. The film offers fresh insights from the survivors together with heartfelt testimony from Stax devotees ranging from Bono and Elvis Costello to Chuck D. Discussion following with director Morgan Neville. NOT ON DVD SAMSON AND DELILAH (1949, United States) Directed by Cecil B. DeMille Between his much lauded adaptations of Exodus, DeMille put his hyperbolic touch on this classic tale of revenge and betrayal from the Book of Judges. After the titular strongman's Philistine bride (a young Angela Lansbury) is killed on their wedding day, her vengeful sister (a stunning Lamarr) hatches a plot to seduce and destroy him. Of note is the film's rousing climax, in which a restored Samson literally crushes his foes by remodeling the city temple with a little brute force. THE SEARCH (1948, Switzerland/United States) Directed by Fred Zinnemann In this gripping postwar drama, Clift plays kind-hearted US Army captain Ralph "Steve" Stevenson, who sifts through the human and physical rubble of Berlin to reunite a Czech boy and his mother. While the young Auschwitz survivor escapes Berlin's crowded orphanages and learns English under the American's care, his grief-stricken parent searches frantically for news of her missing son. Screenplay: Richard Schweizer, David Wechsler, Paul Jarrico. Cast: Montgomery Clift, Jarmila Novotna, Ivan Jandl. Presented in English dialogue with French subtitles. 35mm, 104 min. SECONDS (1966, United States) Directed by John Frankenheimer Bored with his conventional life, middle-aged businessman Arthur Hamilton (John Randolph) undergoes a shocking and sinister operation--transforming himself into a swinging, 30-something playboy (played by Rock Hudson). A faked death and new identity, courtesy of his mysterious benefactor, the Company, completes his metamorphosis. Is this the second chance at life that Arthur had hoped for, or a Faustian plunge into mind-numbing horror? Cinematographer Howe's last feature shot in black and white, Seconds pulses with ambitious, unrestrained camerawork and stark, expressionistic lighting. THE SINFUL DWARF (from IMDB) Olaf and his mother run a boarding house and a white slavery ring. They also smuggle heroin to keep the addict girls happy so they do not try and escape. A young couple move into the house and the evil landlords take a liking to the female. SKIDOO, 1968, Paramount, 97 min. Dir. Otto Preminger. This infamous acid-comedy opened and bombed in 1968 but has since become a highly sought-after cult film - never on video - still not on DVD. Retired mobster Jackie Gleason is coerced by former colleagues back into business, going to prison to execute a contract on a crime commission squealer. Co-starring Carol Channing, Burgess Meredith, Mickey Rooney, George Raft, John Philip Law, Frankie Avalon - and Groucho Marx (as a gang boss named God!) in his last film. Everyone in prison, including guards, eventually get dosed with LSD. Features an acclaimed score and cameo by Harry Nilsson. Several of the cast and crew - including Otto and Groucho - took acid trips as pre-filming research! With special guests including "Skidoo-ologist" Christian Divine. Discussion in between films with director Blake Edwards. SONG OF THE SCARLET FLOWER (LAULU TULIPUNAISESTA KUKASTA) (1938, Finland) Directed by Teuvo Tulio After working as an actor in silent film (dubbed "the Valentino of Finland"), Teuvo Tulio became a leading Finnish director in the 1930s and 1940s. This, Tulio's earliest surviving film, is his version of a classic coming-of-age novel filmed several other times, notably by Swede Mauritz Stiller. The tale of a young cad coming to face his social and sexual responsibilities is set against stunning natural vistas, captured by Tulio's camera in luminous cinematography reminiscent of the classic Scandinavian cinema of the 1920s. Screenwriter: Yrjo Kivimies. Cast: Kaarlo Oksanen, Rakel Linnanheimo, Mirjami Kuosmanen. Presented in Finnish dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 99 min. THE SPY IN BLACK (1939, United Kingdom) Directed by Michael Powell The first of twenty-two collaborations between Powell and Pressburger, this World War I espionage thriller follows a German U-boat captain (Veidt) dispatched to the Scottish coast on a potentially suicidal mission to cripple the British fleet. The lives of captain and crew are further endangered when he falls for his contact, the local schoolmistress (Hobson). Screenplay: Emeric Pressburger, Roland Pertwee. Cast: Conrad Veidt, Sebastian Shaw, Valerie Hobson. 35mm, 82 min. State of the Union 1948/b&w/124 min. | Scr: Myles Connolly, Anthony Veiller; dir: Frank Capra; w/ Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Angela Lansbury, Van Johnson, Adolphe Menjou Tracy actively pursued the role of Grant Matthews, a self-made millionaire manipulated into running for the White House by wily newspaper publisher Kay Thorndyke (a steely and seductive Lansbury). As Matthews's estranged wife who agrees to reconcile temporarily because it will help her husband's presidential campaign, Hepburn delivers a warm, subdued performance. In contrast to the political cynicism of the other characters, Hepburn's pained reaction to her husband's growing corruption shames Matthews into publicly admitting his wrongdoing, an act that destroys his future in politics. STAX REVUE 1967, 1967, Concord, 78 min. A platinum gem recently unearthed in the vaults of Norwegian TV and never before seen in the US! It’s the only known full-length film of the legendary 1967 Stax Revue - the European tour that sparked the soul revolution. Beautifully shot with multiple cameras in a controlled studio environment with quality sound - we get to experience the excitement that Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Arthur Conley, Booker T. & The MGs brought to Europe in that halcyon tour. The film has been digitally-restored and this is its US Premiere! NOT ON DVD Suddenly, Last Summer 1959/b&w/114 min. | Scr: Gore Vidal, Tennessee Williams; dir: Joseph L. Mankiewicz; w/ Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Montgomery Clift Hepburn liked playwright Tennessee Williams personally and admired his talent, but she despised many of his female characters, among them Violet Venable. A wealthy, delusional New Orleans widow, she will stop at nothing—including lobotomy—to cover up the truth about her homosexual son's death. Dividing the action between Mrs. Venable's garden (overgrown with carnivorous plants) and a lunatic asylum seething with sex and violence, the film hints at shocking revelations to come as it delivers a succession of gothic images, such as Hepburn's regal entrance. Her babbling, audible on the mansion's upper floors, grows louder and more insistent as she descends into the top of the film's frame in an ornately caged elevator like a monstrous bird of prey. Summertime 1955/color/100 min. | Scr: David Lean, H. E. Bates; dir: David Lean; w/ Hepburn, Rossano Brazzi, Isa Miranda, Darren McGavin Jane Hudson, a middle-aged, unmarried secretary from Ohio, is disoriented by the sensual beauty and shimmering heat of Venice. She wanders the narrow streets . . . until a pair of ruby-colored goblets beckons her into the shop of a handsome married Italian. With its haunting theme music and ravishing color cinematography, Summertime creates a sensation of melancholy and yearning that many viewers find hard to resist. "Hepburn falling in love is a miracle," David Denby wrote in New York magazine. "Her opening up to passion—she did it again and again in films—is the main reason she remained a star despite all her upper-class mannerisms." Sylvia Scarlett 1935/b&w/95 min. | Scr: Gladys Unger, John Collier, Mortimer Offner; dir: George Cukor; w/ Hepburn, Cary Grant, Brian Aherne, Edmund Gwenn In nineteenth-century England, on-the-lam con artist Hepburn disguises herself as a boy and joins a troupe of actors, but the ambiguous feelings she provokes in a cockney juggler (Grant in his breakthrough role) and an aristocratic artist (Aherne) present new dangers. "The most interesting and audacious movie George Cukor ever made, it boldly and disconcertingly switches tone and genre every few moments, from farce to tragedy to romance to crime thriller and back again . . . The film flopped miserably, but it survives as one of the most poetic, magical, and inventive Hollywood films of its era," wrote Jonathan Rosenbaum of the Chicago Reader. THE THING, 1982, Universal, 109 min. Director John Carpenter re-imagined the 1951 sci-fi classic THE THING FROM ANOTHER WORLD produced by Howard Hawks as something darker, fiercer and altogether more disturbing, pitting sombrero-wearing helicopter pilot Kurt Russell and a crew of Arctic scientists (Wilford Brimley, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart) against a ravenous, shape-shifting alien being. From the haunting opening shots of a sled dog fleeing across the snow, to the apocalyptic, fire-and-ice ending, this ranks with Ridley Scott’s ALIEN as one of the finest (and most beautifully crafted) sci-fi films of the past 20 years. The film was terribly underrated by critics on its initial release, but its stock has constantly risen in the ensuing decades as one of the most intelligent, scary and uncompromising horror films of the 1980’s. Also starring Keith David, David Clennon. A TRIP TO MARS (HIMMELSKIBET) (1918, Denmark) Directed by Holger- Madsen This rare Danish foray into interplanetary travel follows the aptly-named Professor Planetarios and his crew from a horse-drawn carriage to the spaceship Excelsior (complete with propellers) to the lush evergreen pastures of the planet Mars. In this WWI-era pacifist allegory, Mars is inhabited by a race of blonde, pre-Raphaelite vegetarians who renounce all forms of violence, and instead spend their time staging ethereal dance pageants in praise of chastity. After purifying the invaders of their gun-toting ways, the Martians send the High Priest's lovely daughter Marya to earth where she will abolish war forever. Live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. Simultaneous translation of intertitles will be provided. Undercurrent 1946/b&w/118 min. | w/ Katharine Hepburn, Robert Taylor, Robert Mitchum A professor's daughter marries an industrialist and is frightened and finally endangered by the mystery surrounding his brother. THE UNDERNEATH In this thriller, a handsome drifter (Peter Gallagher) named Michael Chambers goes home. There he finds that the good looks and the good luck he relied on while traveling may not be worth much. His mother wants to start a new life while his brother is consumed by jealous rage. Chambers hopes to reignite an old flame, but there is a complication there as well. Soon he is transfixed in a treacherous game of emotional turmoil, joining sex, desire and violence. THE VIRGIN SPRING Max von Sydow stars in this exploration of a father's revenge for the rape and murder of his daughter. Highly contrasting black and white images evoke an imaginative, medieval world created by cinematographer Sven Nykvist. A stunning work. "Achieves a tremendous sense of primeval passion and physical power" (The New York Times). WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION (1957, United States) Directed by Billy Wilder Adapted from the hit play by Agatha Christie, Witness for the Prosecution is a suspenseful courtroom melodrama infused with Wilder's biting wit. Charles Laughton stars as a wily British barrister defending Tyrone Power in a murder trial. Marlene Dietrich plays Power's cold-hearted wife who has turned against her husband to become the titular "witness for the prosecution." Screenwriter: Billy Wilder, Harry Kurnitz, Larry Marcus. Cast: Tyrone Power, Marlene Dietrich, Charles Laughton, Elsa Lanchester. 35mm, 116 min. Woman of the Year 1942/b&w/114 min. | Scr: Michael Kanin, Ring Lardner Jr.; dir: George Stevens; w/ Hepburn, Spencer Tracy, Fay Bainter, Reginald Owen Hepburn was given this original script by friend Michael Kanin and persuaded MGM to make the film on the condition that Stevens direct and Tracy play the crusty sportswriter Sam Craig. When foreign correspondent Tess Harding suggests on a radio broadcast that baseball be suspended for the remainder of World War II, an incensed Craig responds in his column. Their war of words rages—until the two reporters meet, attend a baseball game, and fall in love! The script contrasts the blue-collar appeal of Tracy with the cool, aristocratic intellectualism of Hepburn and, with the war in Europe, pits an isolationist Tracy against an interventionist Hepburn.