a highly-opinionated selection of things happening around town, and sometimes out of town. this month's page here.
wed. aug. 1 all my loving @ egyptian theatre the strawberry alarm clock @ mods 'n' rockers afterparty @ 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 a fool there was 8 PM @ silent movie 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 ghost son 8 PM, shock @ egyptian theatre 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 6:30, circle jerks 8 PM, melvins 10 PM @ the echo the flakes @ satisfaction @ the bordello languis, mia doi todd @ tonalism @ farmlab blood and roses, kiss of the vampire @ egyptian theatre sun. aug. 5 the last american virgin, fast times at ridgemont high @ new beverly theatre the devils, blood on satan's claw @ egyptian 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 wed. aug. 8 cabiria @ ucla film archive out of sight, the underneath @ new beverly theatre slaughterhouse five 8 PM, happy birthday wanda june @ egyptian theatre thu. aug. 9 the beast with five fingers 8 PM, mad love @ egyptian theatre flesh and the devil 8 PM @ silent movie 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 journey to the center of the earth, world without end @ egyptian theatre frostbite, our earthmen friends @ spielberg theatre @ egyptian theatre planet of the apes, beneath the planet of the apes @ aero theatre peter bagge 8 PM @ secret headquarters 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 i bury the living 6:30 PM, the vampire, the return of dracula @ egyptian 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 games 2 PM FREE @ egyptian theatre the curse of the mummy's tomb, frankenstein created woman @ egyptian theatre foot village, john wiese @ the smell 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 the animated films of brent green 9 PM @ silent movie theatre thu. aug. 16 detroit cobras, the willowz @ troubadour zeder 8 PM, beyond the door @ egyptian theatre frenzy, the wrong man @ aero theatre diary of a lost girl 8 PM @ silent movie theatre 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 crack in the world 8 PM, quartermass and the pit @ egyptian theatre rope, lifeboat @ aero theatre buzzcocks @ spaceland sat. aug. 18 sunset junction people on sunday, mauvaise graine @ ucla film archive long day's journey into night @ lacma dr. strangelove, being there @ new beverly theatre these are the damned 5:30 PM, never take sweets from a stranger, maniac @ egyptian theatre the man who knew too much, dial m for murder @ aero theatre sun. aug. 19 sunset junction the clinging vine @ filmradar silents under the stars field trip @ paramount ranch rolling thunder, taxi driver @ new beverly theatre curse of the fly, the projected man @ egyptian theatre suspicion, saboteur @ aero theatre charlie chaplin mutuals part 2 @ 8 PM @ silent movie 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 wed. aug. 22 horror hotel 8 PM, devil doll @ egyptian theatre vertigo @ aero theatre thu. aug. 23 mae shi @ troubadour venus in furs 8 PM, the awful dr. orloff @ egyptian theatre the 39 steps, the lady vanishes @ aero theatre the devil's circus 8 PM @ silent movie theatre fri. aug. 24 one two three, love in the afternoon @ ucla film archive bert jansch, meg baird @ troubadour the werewolf, the black scorpion, monster on the campus @ egyptian theatre psycho, spellbound @ aero theatre sat. aug. 25 fuck yeah fest trainspotting MIDNIGHT @ rialto theatre vanishing point MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre invasion of the body snatchers (1956) 8:30 PM, fiend without a face @ egyptian theatre rear window, the trouble with harry @ aero theatre sun. aug. 26 fuck yeah fest hamlet 7 PM, the floor below @ ucla film archive the thing, invasion of the body snatchers (1978) @ new beverly theatre 20,000 leagues under the sea, the mysterious island @ egyptian theatre mon. aug. 27 the thing, invasion of the body snatchers (1978) @ new beverly theatre tue. aug. 28 ganja and hess, love massacre @ ucla film archive the thing, invasion of the body snatchers (1978) @ 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 cinecon 43 @ egyptian theatre manhandled 8 PM @ silent movie theatre fri. aug. 31 el topo, the holy mountain @ new beverly theatre cinecon 43 @ egyptian theatre sat. sept. 1 el topo, the holy mountain @ new beverly theatre cinecon 43 @ egyptian theatre sun. sept. 2 cinecon 43 @ egyptian theatre mon. sept. 3 cinecon 43 @ egyptian 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. 12 bipolar bear @ the smell 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 sat. nov. 24 charalambides @ the smell 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." A FOOL THERE WAS Theda Bara was one of the most popular screen actresses of her era, and was one of cinema's earliest sex symbols. In this star-making role, Bara uses her sexual powers to enslave a wealthy diplomat she meets on a cruise ship, forcing him to abandon his wife, his work, and even his child to live for her every whim, oblivious to the rest of the world. A FOOL THERE WAS is liberally adapted from a Rudyard Kipling poem, "The Vampire", and Theda Bara's incarnation of the movie's merciless femme fatale so captured the popular imagination, that the term "vamp" soon became common parlance for a sexually predatory woman. (1915) 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 The Animated Films of Brent Green Hailing from rural Pennsylvania, self-taught animator Brent Green has emerged as a visionary artist with a distinctive style. "The New York Times" has called Green's work "some of the most original animations we have seen in years" and his work has shown at Sundance, the Getty, the Hammer Museum, Walker Arts Center and Warhol Museum. Green's hand-made animated films have been likened to everything from folk art to Tim Burton, but no comparison adequately describes Green's dark, uncanny vision. On Wednesday, August 15th, Green will be screening all of his films with live soundtracks and narration, at the Silent Movie Theatre. THE AWFUL DR. ORLOFF, 1962, 90 min. Director Jess Franco, obviously inspired by everything from Universal and Hammer scare-fare to Franju’s EYES WITHOUT A FACE, spins the tale of Dr. Orloff (Howard Vernon), an amoral 19th century surgeon who abducts and experiments on young women hoping to heal his daughter’s burned face. Franco is one of those strange, film-obsessed cult directors who has made close to two hundred movies since the late 1950s – some dreck, some mediocre and some out-and-out masterpieces. He’s worked with everyone from Orson Welles to sleazy Euro porn stars. When he’s on the mark, his films convey a delightful love of genre and sense of atmosphere. This was his breakout international hit and the first successful Spanish horror film, originally released here on a double bill with the now virtually lost Riccardo Freda gem THE HORRIBLE DR. HICHCOCK. Be sure to watch out for Orloff’s blind zombie slave, Morpho (Riccardo Valle), one of the great monster creations from 1960’s Euro horror. 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. THE BEAST WITH FIVE FINGERS, 1946, Warner Bros., 88 min. Dir. Robert Florey. Volatile (and dead) concert pianist Francis Ingram (Victor Francen) has left his Italian estate to his American nurse (Andrea King), much to the chagrin of an avaricious brother and nephew. Peter Lorre is the dead musician’s astrology-obsessed, mentally unbalanced librarian who becomes convinced that his late employer’s left hand -- now missing from the corpse -- is creeping about the villa, bent on murdering all those who oppose Ingram’s last testament. The rest of the household, including King’s paramour Robert Alda and police commissoner J. Carrol Naish, soon become convinced he may be right. The over-the-top Max Steiner score ably punctuates the deranged proceedings. NOT ON DVD 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. BEYOND THE DOOR, 1974, 99 min. Director Ovidio G. Assonitis (THE VISITOR) directed this so-bad-it’s-good, possessed-by-the-devil knock-off that was immensely popular when it was originally released to grindhouses worldwide. Heavily influenced by THE EXORCIST and ROSEMARY’S BABY, the story unfolds as pregnant housewife Juliet Mills (AVANTI) is suddenly given to obscene outbursts, vile physical transformations and dangerously violent fits. Gabriele Lavia (ZEDER) is her hapless husband and Richard Johnson (THE HAUNTING) a mysterious man who shows up, perhaps to help. "…when Jessica (Juliet Mills) begins to turn green and talk like the Big Bopper, the movie’s just conventionally disgusting. We get green vomit, brown vomit, blood, levitations and other manifestations of the devil... It's all trash, but it's scary trash." – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times NOT ON DVD 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. THE BLACK SCORPION, 1957, Warner Bros., 88 min. Dir. Edward Ludwig. Along with THE GIANT BEHEMOTH (1959), this is one of the last films to feature the stop-motion animation effects of the great Willis O’Brien (KING KONG). Two geologists, American Richard Denning (TARGET EARTH; THE DAY THE WORLD ENDED) and Mexican Carlos Rivas investigate a volcanic eruption in rural Mexico and are surprised to find a number of mysterious deaths occurring in the countryside. Teaming up with beautiful ranch-owner Mara Corday (TARANTULA), they discover a legion of giant scorpions emerging from a newly created fissure in the earth. Although hamstrung by budget, O’Brien creates many memorably scary sequences, and the film moves along at a fast pace as the scientists and military struggle to find a way to stop the killer arachnids before they reach urban areas. BLOOD AND ROSES 1960, Paramount, 74 min. Roger Vadim (BARBARELLA) directed this sumptuously beautiful adaptation of J. Sheridan LeFanu’s vampire classic, Carmilla, updating it effectively to a contemporary setting. Carmilla (Annette Vadim) suffers pangs of jealousy when her beloved cousin Leopoldo Karnstein (Mel Ferrer) becomes engaged to ravishing Georgia (Elsa Martinelli). Carmilla soon comes to believe she is possessed by her ancient, undead ancestor, the vampire Millarca, and begins a reign of terror on the grounds of Leopoldo’s estate. Director Vadim and cinematographer Claude Renoir concentrate on the story’s sensuality, creating a dreamlike, ethereal quality that is unpretentiously poetic and positively entrancing. Unfortunately, American censors snipped several minutes of footage to tone down the lesbian slant in the narrative. The exceptionally rare French version is even harder to see than this English-language release. It is a testament to Vadim, cinematographer Renoir, music composer Jean Prodromides and the cast that the film remains so poignant and haunting, embodying the spiritual anguish of the characters as well as the horror. An underrated, hard-to-see classic. NOT ON DVD BLOOD ON SATAN’S CLAW, 1971, MGM Repertory, 93 min. Dir. Piers Haggard. One of our most-requested titles is back in an encore screening, in the first new print in over 30 years! In 17th century England, a farmer (Barry Andrews) unearths a hideous, fur-covered claw in his field, unleashing a wave of superstition, hysteria and devil worship by the village youth. Ranks with Michael Reeves’ WITCHFINDER GENERAL as one of the most chilling and evocative horror films of the late 1960’s. With Patrick Wymark, Linda Hayden. "Every scene is soaked in the lush greens and browns of a damp British summer, giving it a sense of time and place which…helps suspend disbelief and sucks the viewer in – it’s almost like the Tigon crew traveled back in time to film it. It is this quality that amplifies the horror, making you believe that what is happening on the screen actually happened." – British Horror Films (UK) NOT ON DVD 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. Charlie Chaplin Mutuals 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 second half of a complete retrospective by the Silent Movie Theatre, and will include the following shorts: The Fireman, Behind the Screen, One AM, The Pawnshop, The Count, The Rink. 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. CRACK IN THE WORLD, 1965, Paramount, 96 min. Terminally ill scientist Dana Andrews believes he can siphon off geo-thermal energy from the earth’s core by firing a nuclear missile deep below the planet’s crust. Colleague Kieron Moore thinks it’s a bad idea and tries to stop Andrews before it’s too late. But, inevitably, the missile is fired, and a crack starts to appear gradually circling the globe, threatening to break the world in half! Complicating matters on a personal level, Andrews wife Janette Scott is in love with Moore (Moore and Scott were a real-life couple at the time and had previously co-starred as a pair of married scientists in DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS.) The alarmingly real special effects and production design were by veteran master Eugene Lourie (director of BEAST FROM 20,000 FATHOMS). There’s also a pulse-pounding score by John Douglas and a good cast at fever pitch. Andrew Marton (co-director of KING SOLOMON’S MINES) helmed this rarely screened, hard-to-see sixties classic. NOT ON DVD 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. CURSE OF THE FLY, 1965, 20th Century Fox, 86 min. Although nominally set in Canada, this third and final entry in the original FLY series was shot in Great Britain by Hammer veteran director Don Sharp (KISS OF THE VAMPIRE; FACE OF FU MANCHU). Beautiful, escaped asylum inmate Patricia (Carole Grey) marries tormented Martin Delambre (George Baker), a man in thrall to his mad scientist father Henri (Brian Donlevy) who is bent on continuing the family tradition of teleporter experimentation. Although there are no human fly hybrids here, there is plenty of madness and mayhem. Particularly nightmarish are the sequences with mutants from botched experiments that Donlevy keeps locked in sheds behind their mansion. Low budget but stylish, fast-moving and very entertaining. With Burt Kwouk (PINK PANTHER series). "Sharp offers up some suitably horrific moments with steaming mutated masses arriving in teleport booths or the moment Grey finds the mutant remains of Baker’s former wife playing the piano." – Richard Scheib, The SF, Horror and Fantasy Film Review NOT ON DVD THE CURSE OF THE MUMMY’S TOMB, 1964, Sony Repertory, 81 min. Michael Carreras (son of Hammer’s co-founder, James Carreras) directed this first sequel to Hammer’s successful remake of THE MUMMY that starred Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee. This time out Terence Morgan is the reincarnation of ancient Egyptian royalty who uses his mummy brother (Dickie Owen) to target the English archaeologists (Jack Gwillim, Ronald Howard) and an American carnival huckster (the great Fred Clark) who have defiled an ancient burial site, attempting to cash in on the mummified remains and artifacts. Morgan is also bent on bewitching the sensual Jeanne Roland, Howard’s paramour and the daughter of one of the slain explorers. Otto Heller’s lush color cinematography effectively and atmospherically disguises the low budget. "…a solid, serious thriller which tells a good tale and even manages to have a twist near the end…It also has what must rank as one of the top ten nasty movie deaths, when the monster, having broken into the hero's house hotly followed by the ineffectual police, stamps on a cringing Egyptian's head." – British Horror Films (UK) NOT ON DVD DEVIL DOLL, 1964, Gordon Films, Inc., 81 min. Director Lindsay Shonteff (plus supposedly an uncredited Sidney J. Furie) and producer Richard Gordon deliver one of the creepiest evil puppet movies this side of DEAD OF NIGHT. Svengali-like ventriloquist Vorelli (Bryant Haliday, of THE PROJECTED MAN) hopes to mesmerize desirable heiress Yvonne Romain (CURSE OF THE WEREWOLF) into becoming his slave, thus jettisoning long-term mistress Sandra Dorne. But wooden Hugo, who has a peculiar hold over Vorelli, has plans of his own. The strikingly gritty black and white cinematography is by Hammer veteran Gerald Gibbs. With William Sylvester (2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY). "The film is aided immensely by a darkly charismatic performance from Bryant Haliday who plays with a cold arrogance that seems to have been closely modeled on the usual screen manner of Christopher Lee…Best of all are the battles of wills between he and Hugo which contain great psychological tension...Shonteff adds quite a sado-sexual element, one which was quite a bit more upfront than usual for the film’s time…The surprise ending comes as a great shock." – Richard Scheib, The SF, Horror and Fantasy Film Review THE DEVILS, 1971, Warner Bros., 111 min. Director Ken Russell’s still-shocking adaptation of Aldous Huxley’s "Devils Of Loudun" was vilified as blasphemous and excessive upon its initial release, and remains one of the most disturbingly memorable films from the early 1970’s. The film’s allegory of a corrupt power structure equating sexual activity with satanism, all for the sake of political and religious repression, is more relevant today than ever. In the 17th century, French Cardinal Richelieu’s minions use the womanizing of activist priest Urban Grandier (Oliver Reed) as a pretext for the Inquisition to investigate his "diabolic possession" of the local nuns, including demented, hunchback Mother Superior Sister Jeanne (an unforgettable Vanessa Redgrave). With support from an excellent cast that includes Dudley Sutton, Gemma Jones and Michael Gothard. NOT ON DVD THE DEVIL'S CIRCUS Norma Shearer is one of the most underrated of the "silent sirens." Shearer was actually a six-time Oscar nominee and one of the top-five box office stars of the silent era. Here, Shearer plays a romantically-doomed trapeze artist in a moody circus melodrama. Director Benjamin Christensen (best known for HAXAN) brings considerable visual style to the proceedings, with exciting trapeze stunts and a pack of hungry lions. (1927) DIARY OF A LOST GIRL With her independent streak, and her iconic “page-boy” cut, Louise Brooks remains a remarkably modern movie star. See her in GW Pabst's great melodrama which "The Village Voice" called a "glowing portrait of decadence (which) extends to the furthest reaches of Weimar culture." Brooks plays the naïve daughter of a prosperous pharmacist. Shy and fawnlike, the wide-eyed innocent is made pregnant by her father's young assistant. To preserve family honor, she is sent to a repressive reform school from which she eventually escapes. Penniless and homeless, she is directed to a brothel where she becomes liberated and lives for the moment with radiant physical abandon. (1929) FIEND WITHOUT A FACE, 1958, Gordon Films, Inc., 74 min. Dir. Arthur Crabtree. In this staggeringly weird blend of science-fiction, nuclear paranoia and Lovecraftian imagery, Marshall Thompson is sucked into a whirlpool of sabotage and death at a U.S. Air Force base in Canada, only to discover the guilty party is a legion of flying brains addicted to sucking out human cerebral matter from the back of the neck! A must-see cult favorite from producer Richard Gordon, and yes, yet another film set in Canada but shot in England! With Kynaston Reeves, Kim Parker, Terence Kilburn. "…executed in crisp and efficient fashion by veteran director Arthur Crabtree (HORRORS OF THE BLACK MUSEUM). Crabtree, a former cinematographer, knew how to take tight spaces and milk every last drop of tension out of the scenes…some of the scariest looking and most grotesque monsters in genre history." – Harold Gervais, DVD Verdict 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. FLESH AND THE DEVIL The famously reclusive Greta Garbo was one of the most iconic beauties in movie history. Bette Davis called her acting talent "pure witchcraft." This glossy, melodramatic, sensual silent film set the template for Garbo's reputation as a devastating erotic force of nature. Garbo plays an impulsive, languorous seductress who threatens the lifelong bond between two men. FLESH AND THE DEVIL is famous for its extended love scenes, between real-life lovers Garbo and John Gilbert—scenes that were lit by a single flame. It’s also believed to be the first Hollywood film depicting a French kiss. (1926) 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 CREATED WOMAN, 1967, 20th Century Fox, 86 min. Dir. Terence Fisher. In this thoroughly bizarre fourth film in Hammer’s FRANKENSTEIN series, the Baron (Peter Cushing) and his assistant (Thorley Walters) retrieve the body of their young helper, Hans (Robert Morris) after he has been guillotined for a murder three rich young wastrels committed. Hans girlfriend, crippled Christina (Susan Denberg), kills herself. Frankenstein transplants the soul of Hans into Christina’s body, inadvertently creating a sensual blonde engine of vengeful destruction who seeks out the true culprits of the original homicide. This is the UK version of the film. "…this stylishly directed and memorable affair is considered by genre aficionados to be one of the best Hammer productions. Cushing’s female creation is far from the traditional Boris Karloff monster and centres more on soul transference than body parts, and gore is sacrificed in favour of a gothic tale of love and revenge. Playboy magazine model, Susan Denberg (Ms. August, 1966) supplies the heaving bosom and titillation that would become commonplace with future Hammer productions." – Britmovie (UK) FRENZY, 1972, Universal, 116 min. Director Alfred Hitchcock revisits his theme of the wrongfully accused man, but with a ferocious vengeance not seen outside of PSYCHO. Chip-on-his-shoulder bartender Jon Finch is mistaken for the strangler in a London murder spree perpetrated by his elegant flower-merchant friend, Barry Foster. With a great cast that includes Anna Massey, Alec McCowen, and Vivien Merchant. FROSTBITE, 2006, Solid Entertainment, 98 min. Moscow-educated director Anders Banke delivers this alternately scary and funny horror movie, one of the very few Swedish vampire movies. In midwinter, medical doctor Annika and her 17-year-old daughter Saga have just moved to Lapland for Annika’s new job. The little town with its seemingly endless polar night appears to be just as boring as Saga thought it would be. Saga quickly meets new friends through Vega, a Goth girl who acts as though she has known Saga for years. But things are amiss in the biting winter cold. Annika finds out that there is something not quite right at the hospital, and the little community is suddenly struck by mysterious deaths. There is something hunting in the night, and when the world around her disappears into a maelstrom of snow, ice and blood, the last thing she wants to hear is that there’s more than a month until dawn! With Petra Nielsen, Grete Havneskold, Jonas Karlstrom. NOT ON DVD GAMES, 1967, Universal, 100 min. Beautiful people James Caan and Katherine Ross live in a fun townhouse filled with Pop Art and pinball games – until mysterious charlatan Simone Signoret (DIABOLIQUE) drops in, and the parlor games turn devilishly sinister. Director Curtis Harrington (NIGHT TIDE) sustains a remarkably convincing and frightening sense of decadent indulgences carried beyond the pale, with predictable mushrooming fear and personal disaster waiting in the wings. Co-starring the underrated Don Stroud (COOGAN’S BLUFF) as the ill-fated, punk grocery delivery boy. NOT ON DVD 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. GHOST SON, 2006, Adriana Chiesa, 96 min. Director Lamberto Bava’s ghost saga begins with very much in-love couple Stacey (Laura Harring, of MULHOLLAND DRIVE) and Mark (John Hannah) living a dream life in the South African veldt. Then Mark suffers fatal car crash injuries in the remote countryside. Soon after, he appears to Stacey in a dream. Or was it real? The couple make love, and Stacey gradually begins to lose her grip on reality. After examinng her, doctor Pete Postlethwaite is astonished to find her pregnant. Everyone assumes the child was conceived before Mark’s death, but we know otherwise. When the baby is delivered, nightmarish events mushroom for Stacey, and she realizes that Mark’s clinging ghost – nourished by the rich, local culture of ancient African spirit lore - wants to pull her out of this world and into the next through their son. NOT ON DVD 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. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WANDA JUNE, 1971, Sony Repertory, 105 min. Director Mark Robson adapts Kurt Vonnegut’s satiric play puncturing arrogant Anglo Saxon machismo. After being lost for eight years in the Amazonian rain forest and given up for dead, big white hunter Rod Steiger returns home with his sidekick (and dropper of the Nagasaki A-bomb), William Hickey (PRIZZI’S HONOR). But macho blowhard Steiger is in for a surprise when he finds that his former-carhop wife (Susannah York) is now highly educated and enamored of a gentle, pacifist doctor (George Grizzard). Don Murray (BUS STOP) is yet another new fixture on the scene, an over-eager vacuum cleaner salesman hoping to charm his way into York’s heart. Pamelyn Ferdin is the couple’s deceased progeny, Wanda June, playing shuffleboard with Jesus in heaven. Vonnegut’s priceless verbal sparring ensues, with often hilariously barbed results. "Rod Steiger shines as the self-deceiving ultra-masculine hero, returned from eight years in the Amazon jungle, to find that not only has his loving wife, a former pinheaded carhop (played brilliantly by Susannah York), become a levelheaded intellectual equal but has gone to his extreme opposite in seeking another soul mate." – Variety NOT ON DVD 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." HORROR HOTEL (aka THE CITY OF THE DEAD), 1960, 76 min. Dir. John Moxey ("The Night Stalker"). "Ring for Doom Service!" was the legendary tagline created by co-producer Max Rosenberg for this atmospheric Gothic thriller. The lovely Venetia Stevenson stars as an unsuspecting college student who goes to Whitewood, Massachusetts to research the history of witchcraft in the area, only to find it still very much alive, thanks to professor Christopher Lee and his followers -- some of whom, like warlock Jethrow Keane (Valentine Dyall) and witch Elizabeth Selwyn (Patricia Jessel), are well-over 200 years old! It’s up to minister’s daughter Betta St. John and student Dennis Lotis to set things right. There’s atmosphere to burn courtesy of Desmond Dickinson’s evocative black and white cinematography and the very effective, mist-shrouded Whitewood set. Highly recommended. I BURY THE LIVING, 1958, MGM Repertory, 76 min. Former colleague of John Huston, Albert Band (director of the virtually lost classic, FACE OF FIRE) helmed this scary, low budget sleeper. New cemetery chairman Richard Boone (TV’s "Have Gun, Will Travel") discovers that he seemingly has the power of life and death over the town citizenry with the black and white stickpins placed in the graveyard’s map of burial plots. Theodore Bikel is the strange, elderly caretaker who may know more than he is letting on. Gerald Fried (PATHS OF GLORY; THE KILLING) supplies another great score. "…tense little psychological thriller… it succeeds through its dark style and its unbending, relentless pursuit of the oddly imaginative, yet simple premise." – Josh Hickman, Film Threat 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. INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS, 1956, Paramount, 80 min. Director Don Siegel (DIRTY HARRY) and screenwriter Daniel Mainwaring adapted Jack Finney’s novel into a brilliant, utterly compelling sci-fi story of a small Southern California town overtaken by alien seedpods that mutate into emotionless doppelgangers of the human inhabitants. Still one of the most frightening movies ever made and a paranoiac’s delight, the picture has been credited as a metaphor for the Red Scare’s McCarthyism. Kevin McCarthy is excellent as the returning-from-a-trip doctor who gradually realizes the insidious changes going on right under his nose. The exceptional supporting cast includes Dana Wynter, Carolyn Jones (Morticia of TV’s "The Addams Family"), King Donovan, Larry Gates and a cameo by a young Sam Peckinpah (!). 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. JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH, 1959, 20th Century Fox, 132 min. Dir. Henry Levin. Along with Richard Fleischer’s 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA, this is one of the finest versions of a Jules Verne novel ever filmed, with James Mason beautifully cast as an obsessive Scottish geology professor who descends into the depths of the Earth with eager student Pat Boone, alluring widow Arlene Dahl, and sinister nemesis Thayer David. The dazzling underground crystal caves, ferocious dinosaurs and mushroom forests are among the most delightful Hollywood creations of the 1950’s. Produced and co-written by Charles Brackett (Billy Wilder’s longtime partner), with a terrific stereo score by the maestro Bernard Herrmann. Rarely revived since its original release. KISS OF THE VAMPIRE , 1963, Universal, 88 min. Edward de Souza and Jennifer Daniel are honeymooning British newlyweds in rural Bavaria circa 1910 when their car runs out of gas. They find shelter in a virtually deserted hotel and soon learn that the nearby village lives in fear of the neighboring castle. And castle owner, Dr. Ravna (Noel Willman) is only too glad to extend his hospitality to the stranded pair. Sinister Ravna and his equally predatory son and daughter have their own agenda, hoping to recruit unawares beauty, Daniel, into their secret society of degenerate bloodsuckers. Clifford Evans (CURSE OF THE WEREWOLF) is a reclusive, alcoholic professor who has already lost his daughter to the vampires, and he helps de Souza fight the undead when Daniel suddenly goes missing. "…one of Hammer Films' finest moments. The entire cast is stellar down to the last extra." – Christopher Dietrich, DVD Drive-In; "…a typically effective score by James Bernard, quality performances, and it both bathes in tradition and extends it. Those are all good reasons to seek this film out, but the best is that restrained but prolonged tension and ghostly ambience that Hammer did so well. While there are films that achieve it as well as KISS OF THE VAMPIRE, few achieve it better." – Classic-Horror.com THE LADY VANISHES, 1938, MGM Repertory, 97 min. "Spies! Playing the game of love – and sudden death!" Ravishing British beauty Margaret Lockwood finds no one will believe her when she claims a sweet old lady has mysteriously disappeared from a moving train – in fact, no one believes the old woman exists at all. Flawless suspense and nimble comedy co-mingle in this classic example of Alfred Hitchcock’s earlier British period. Watch for Naunton Wayne and Basil Radford as two cricket-obsessed fellow passengers – their pairing here was so successful, they co-starred in a further ten films playing essentially the same characters! Co-starring Michael Redgrave, Paul Lukas. 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. 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. MAD LOVE, 1935, Warner Bros., 68 min. Dir. Karl Freund. "Dead hands that live...and love...and kill!" More macabre shenanigans involving amputated hands. Grand Guignol theatre star Yvonne Orlac (Frances Drake) goes to brilliant -- but crazy -- surgeon Dr. Gogol (Peter Lorre) as a last resort when her concert pianist husband Stephen (Colin Clive, of FRANKENSTEIN) has his hands mangled in a train accident. Gogol, insanely in love with Yvonne, and willing to do anything to steal her away, transplants the hands of a guillotined murderer onto the comatose Stephen. Counting on the highly-suggestive nature of the neurotic pianist, Gogol makes him believe he also possesses the dead killer’s personality. An intense, delirious adaptation of French writer Maurice Renard’s oft-filmed novel, The Hands Of Orlac. 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. MANHANDLED "When you put them all together and add them up, Gloria Swanson comes out the movie star of all movie stars," observed Cecil B. DeMille. The ultimate silent siren and glamour queen, Swanson was the natural choice to play Norma Desmond in Billy Wilder’s SUNSET BOULEVARD. While Swanson may be famous for her incredible outfits and melodramatic movie roles, MANHANDLED, her first film for director Alan Dwan, is a great introduction to her talents as a comedienne. In this romantic comedy, Swanson plays a department store clerk with a talent for impersonations, including a hilarious and surprising turn as Chaplin. (1924) MANIAC, 1963, Sony Repertory, 86 min. Director Michael Carreras (CURSE OF THE MUMMY’S TOMB) helmed this Jimmy Sangster-penned psychological thriller that has much in common with the suspense mysteries coming out of France at the time. Indeed, it is set in Southern France, with American drifter Paul (Kerwin Mathews, of THE 7th VOYAGE OF SINBAD) suddenly finding himself caught between the affections of beautiful young Annette (Lillian Brousse) and her scheming stepmother, inn-owner Eve (Nadia Gray, of LA DOLCE VITA). Eve’s husband resides in an insane asylum ever since he blowtorched-to-death the man who raped Annette, and Eve convinces Paul to help her break him out of his confinement. But after the breakout, homicidal complications set-in, and Paul’s ability to tell what is really going on suffers proportionately – especially after he starts noticing the flickering light of an acetylene torch coming from the inn’s ancient garage late at night! With Donald Houston. NOT ON DVD 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. MONSTER ON THE CAMPUS, 1958, Universal, 77 min. "Co-ed beauty captive of man-monster! Campus terror! Students victims of terror-beast!" Director Jack Arnold (CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON) follows absent-minded professor Arthur Franz in his obsessive research. When the dedicated scientist is accidentally contaminated by poisonous blood from a prehistoric fish, he starts periodically transforming into a Neanderthal killer stalking his college community. Joanna Moore is his longsuffering girlfriend. Troy Donahue has an early role as Franz’ prize pupil whose dog is briefly turned into a saber-toothed canine. This epitome of 1950’s drive-in hokum is a wonderfully entertaining guilty pleasure. "…particularly funny is the bizarre lengths the script has to go to keep getting Arthur Franz’s scientist re-infected all over again while still unaware of what is happening – with him cutting his hand on a dog’s tooth, while the scene smoking dragonfly blood dripped into a pipe bowl should have left the film a cult classic for the ‘head’ set ten years later." -- Richard Scheib, The SF, Horror and Fantasy Film Review Discussion in between first two films with actress Joyce Holden (THE WEREWOLF). THE MYSTERIOUS ISLAND, 1961, Sony Repertory, 101 min. Based on Jules Verne's sequel to 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, MYSTERIOUS ISLAND follows a group of Union soldier prisoners during the Civil War who escape using an enemy balloon, only to find themselves blown off course to a remote island, populated by monstrous creatures and the enigmatic Captain Nemo (Herbert Lom) himself! Directed by Cy Endfield (ZULU; TRY AND GET ME) in a rare fantasy outing, with a superb score by maestro Bernard Herrmann. With Michael Craig, Joan Greenwood, Michael Callan, Gary Merrill. Discussion in between the films with actor Michael Callan (MYSTERIOUS ISLAND). NEVER TAKE SWEETS FROM A STRANGER, 1960, Sony Repertory, 81 min. Cyril Frankel directed this excellent, nearly-impossible-to-see Hammer experiment in socially-conscious, psychological horror that was barely released – perhaps because it was just too creepy and nerve-wracking for most audiences. Peter Carter (Patrick Allen) is the new principal of the local high school in a pastoral Canadian community. He and his wife (Gwen Watford) become just a tad alarmed when they find that their pre-pubescent daughter (Janina Faye, from HORROR OF DRACULA) and her best friend have danced naked in front of demented, old Clarence Olderberry (Felix Aylmer), a rich scion of the town’s founding clan. Olderberry’s son (Bill Nagy), a hardnosed businessman, steamrollers everyone in his path in order to quash the investigation and to discredit Carter’s family. But even though the son seems to triumph, the elderly Olderberry is tragically not quite done with his obsessions. The last twenty minutes of this compact little thriller, where the elderly Olderberry stalks his two young prey through the lonely woods to a deserted lakefront, is about as nail-bitingly unnerving as anything you’ll ever see. NOT ON DVD 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. OUR EARTHMEN FRIENDS, 2006, Films 13, 84 min. French director Bernard Werber delivers a bizarrely funny mockumentary. In order to observe human subjects in the wild and under controlled situations, the aliens pluck two strangers, a man and a woman, from a forest and drop them – naked – into a clear cage suspended in darkness. Exhibit A is painter Agathe, whose volcanic temper is offset by the confused brooding of Exhibit B, musician Bertrand. As the narrator speculates on the uses of everyday objects, including toilets, chickens and felt-tipped pens, one of each item is obligingly dropped into the cell to see what the humans will do with it. Meanwhile, Exhibit A and B’s respective spouses meet and soon begin an uneasy cohabitation observed in all its messy confusion by the unseen aliens. With Annelise Hesme, Audrey Dana, Thomas Le Douarec. In French, with English subtitles. NOT ON DVD 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. THE PROJECTED MAN, 1967, Universal, 77 min. Dir. Ian Curteis. This much underrated sci-fi horror opus owes much to a blend of the early FLY films as well as Boris Karloff’s INVISIBLE RAY, with pioneering scientist Bryant Haliday (TOWER OF EVIL; DEVIL DOLL) metamorphosing into a disfigured mutant with a deadly touch after a teleportation experiment goes awry. Mary Peach excels as his no-nonsense colleague who wants to help him as well as get to the bottom of what appears to be sabotage by Haliday’s duplicitous superiors. The saga moves at a fast clip and delivers some surprisingly grisly shocks. Most people are unaware of the fact that leading man Haliday was an American-born actor who not only co-founded Boston’s Brattle Theatre, but also the esteemed, arthouse film distribution company, Janus Films! NOT ON DVD QUATERMASS AND THE PIT, 1967, 20th Century Fox, 97 min. Dir. Roy Ward Baker. A brilliant fusion of apocalyptic sci-fi and supernatural mystery, based on writer Nigel Kneale’s original teleplay, as Professor Quatermass (Andrew Keir) excavates a centuries-old alien spacecraft in the London subway. Unfortunately, the military insists it is an unexploded weapon from Nazi Germany that was inadvertently buried during the London Blitz. The resultant political bureaucracy hamstrings Quatermass and his colleagues as the dangerous psychic link and telekinetic Martian threat from eons past grows more dire. With Barbara Shelley, James Donald. THE RETURN OF DRACULA, 1958, MGM Repertory, 77 min. Director Paul Landres and screenwriter Pat Fielder, aided by composer Gerald Fried, concoct a supernatual variant on Hitchcock’s SHADOW OF A DOUBT. Francis Lederer is a quite effective Dracula in this chilling, low budget classic. When the undead count is stalked by an intrepid vampire hunter (John Wengraf) in Eastern Europe, he murders a man headed to the USA, assuming his victim’s identity. Teenage Rachel (Norma Eberhardt) and family are happy to welcome their visiting European uncle (whom they’ve never met before) to their sleepy southern California town. But they begin to find it odd when they never see him in the daytime. Soon, disturbing things occur, including the sudden death of blind friend Jenny, and the charmingly sinister bloodsucker focuses on making Rachel his next vampire bride. Another one of Hollywood’s many 1950’s horror pictures to utilize Bronson Canyon cave as one of its locations. Discussion in between first two films with actor Theodore Bikel (I BURY THE LIVING),and between 2nd and 3rd films with actress Coleen Gray (THE VAMPIRE), writer Pat Fielder (THE VAMPIRE, RETURN OF DRACULA) and producer Arthur Gardner (THE VAMPIRE, RETURN OF DRACULA). 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. SHOCK (aka BEYOND THE DOOR II), 1979, 92 min. Mario Bava’s last feature film (co-directed with son Lamberto, uncredited) revisits themes first explored in KILL, BABY, KILL and WHIP AND THE BODY as Daria Nicolodi (DEEP RED) and her child are haunted by the ghost of her first husband, a drug addict. Actor Ivan Rassimov (MAN FROM DEEP RIVER), who usually played a villain in 1970’s Italian pictures, does a rare good guy turn here as Nicolodi’s concerned doctor. With John Steiner (TENEBRE) as Nicolodi’s current, almost-never-at-home airline pilot husband. Contains some of maestro Bava’s scariest, most impressive effects. SLAUGHTERHOUSE-FIVE, 1972, Universal, 104 min. Director George Roy Hill and screenwriter Stephen Geller (TV’s "Mission: Impossible") adapt Kurt Vonnegut’s sardonic exploration of the timeless madness of human existence, from wartime atrocity to middle-class mediocrity to interplanetary euphoria. Middle-aged optometrist, Billy Pilgrim (Michael Sacks), who survived the hellish WWII firebombing of Dresden, simultaneously exists in the past as a young POW in a German prison camp and in the far future as an elderly resident in a zoo on the planet Tralfamadore (where he is memorably pampered by Valerie Perrine as the libidinous starlet, Montana Wildhack). With Ron Leibman, Sharon Gans, Holly Near, Perry King and Eugene Roche. "Mr. Hill's achievement in SLAUGHTERHOUSE -FIVE is in transferring to film…the author's ebullient senses of humor and chaos…Second to THE GODFATHER, SLAUGHTERHOUSE-FIVE is probably the most perfectly cast film in months, mostly with actors who have had little previous film experience…" – Vincent Canby, The New York Times 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. 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." THESE ARE THE DAMNED (aka THE DAMNED), 1963, Sony Repertory, 96 min. Released cut by nearly ten minutes in the US, this is the restored version of director Joseph Losey’s stunning parable of the atomic age. Wandering American Macdonald Carey and British teddy girl Shirley Anne Field flee from a gang of delinquents led by her brother Oliver Reed, and inadvertently stumble upon a nightmare government project to breed children who can survive a nuclear holocaust! With Alexander Knox, Viveca Lindfors. "In Mr. Losey's hands the Orwellian secret, involving a group of children raised in isolation under the austere protection of an all-seeing television eye, becomes frighteningly plausible…Mr. Losey, proceeding with grim logic toward his apocalyptic climax, has made a strong comment about the nuclear age — while arrestingly demonstrating just how much a gifted filmmaker can accomplish with limited means." – Eugene Archer, The New York Times NOT ON DVD Restored and Uncut! 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. 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA, 1954, Disney, 127 min. Director Richard Fleischer’s most beloved film captures both the childlike sense of awe and the more sober nature of Jules Verne’s classic novel: James Mason is the perfect Captain Nemo, an idealistic intellectual, but fanatical anti-war crusader using his futuristic submarine to sink the battleships of every nation. When he picks up salty dog Kirk Douglas, scientist Paul Lukas and faithful valet Peter Lorre, after sinking the warship on which they were passengers, the adventure begins. Academy Award-winning art direction and special effects highlight this surprisingly adult Disney fantasy. 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 VAMPIRE, 1957, MGM Repertory, 75 min. Small town doctor Paul Beecher (the excellent John Beal) mistakenly takes some pills he found on a dead researcher’s body and immediately becomes addicted. Sheriff Buck Donnelly (Kenneth Tobey, of THE THING) connects the dots when people start turning up dead, and, before long, tormented Beal realizes he is the vampire killer. Coleen Gray (NIGHTMARE ALLEY) is his devoted nurse, hoping to stay alive as she tries to help him. A fast- moving, well-acted little gem of a thriller punctuated with an awesome, chills-inducing score by composer Gerald Fried. Director Paul Landres and crew manage to create a creepy California Gothic ambience out of the shadows of a quiet suburban neighborhood – no mean feat! The powerful climax was shot in Griffith Park. NOT ON DVD VENUS IN FURS, 1969, 86 min. Director Jess Franco reached a mesmerizing, surreal zenith with a quartet of pictures in the late 1960’s/early1970’s – SUCCUBUS, VAMPIROS LESBOS, SHE KILLED IN ECSTASY - and this bewitchingly dreamlike ghost story. Tormented jazz trumpeter Jimmy (James Darren) cannot reconcile his music with his often chaotic personal life. After finding the body of Wanda (Maria Rohm), an innocent girl sucked into the game-playing lives of three wealthy sadists (Dennis Price, Klaus Kinski and Margaret Lee), washed up on the Turkish shore, Jimmy starts to lose his cool. Fatally obsessed, he later glimpses Wanda seemingly alive again at various parties – and watches as the three rich perverts start dying. Sultry chanteuse Barbara McNair (who sings the catchy title tune) is Jimmy’s girlfriend who finds her man slipping away into the arms of a ghost. With an appropriate twist ending and a memorable jazz rock fusion score by Mike Hugg and Manfred Mann. Franco reportedly modeled Darren’s character on tragic jazzman Chet Baker. "Franco exhales Albert Camus existential smoke, but really the film is like a Marvel Team-up between Rainer Werner Fassbinder and Russ Meyer set loose in the Hammer Studios. Translation: It's trippy and campy as hell." – Wesley Morris, The San Francisco Examiner 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). THE WEREWOLF, 1956, Sony Repertory, 79 min. Fred F. Sears (EARTH VS. THE FLYING SAUCERS) directed this compact, nightmarish chiller full of remarkable atmosphere. Steven Ritch (who co-wrote as well as appeared in the noirs PLUNDER ROAD and CITY OF FEAR) gives a nuanced performance as an amnesiac traveling salesman who has been experimented on by two ruthless scientists after he’s been in a car accident. He gradually comes to realize that he is the savage werewolf terrorizing a snowbound mountain community. Don Megowan is the sheriff investigating, and Joyce Holden is the lawman’s compassionate nurse girlfriend who wants to help Ritch – after all, the tragic monster is also a victim. A suspenseful, well-done little sleeper that deserves to be rediscovered. Great use of Big Bear Lake locations. NOT ON DVD 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. WORLD WITHOUT END, 1956, Warner Bros., 80 min. Dir. Edward Bernds (RETURN OF THE FLY). Allied Artists was trying to shed their "poverty-row" Monogram-roots when they produced this relatively big budget sci-fi epic. Indeed, it was one of the very first science-fiction pictures to be lensed in Cinemascope and color. Hugh Marlowe (EARTH VS. THE FLYING SAUCERS), Rod Taylor (THE TIME MACHINE), Nelson Leigh and Christopher Dark are a quartet of scientists catapulted far into Earth’s future when their spaceship, returning from a Martian orbit, goes through a freak energy belt. After crash landing, they find giant cave spiders, cavemen mutants and an elite underground civilization afflicted by sterilization from repeated atomic wars. This extremely hard-to-see cult movie supplies well-acted, pulp sci-fi thrills in the best Saturday matinee tradition. With Nancy Gates (SUDDENLY) and Shawn Smith (IT! THE TERROR FROM BEYOND SPACE) as the future girls-next-door. With Lisa Janti. Discussion in between films with actress Lisa Janti (WORLD WITHOUT END) and actor Pat Boone. NOT ON DVD THE WRONG MAN, 1956, Warner Bros., 105 min. Henry Fonda plays real-life jazz musician Emmanuel Ballestreros, an innocent man who is one day sucked into a whirlpool of circumstantial guilt and left to drown in New York’s criminal justice system. This seldom-seen gem by director Alfred Hitchcock, a grim orphan amongst his glossy 1950’s confections, was shot entirely on-site in the locations where the story actually happened, and it expertly draws the viewer into the nightmare of the falsely-accused. Hitchcock was famously paranoid of anything and everything to do with the police, and those fears reach their zenith of expression here. With Vera Miles and Anthony Quayle excellent in supporting roles. ZEDER, 1983, 89 min. Director Pupi Avati (THE HOUSE OF LAUGHING WINDOWS) offers up one of his most spine-tingling features. Freelance writer Stefano (Gabriele Lavia) follows the thread of a dangerous story after finding cryptic remarks on the ribbon of a second-hand typewriter. Before long, he unravels a bizarre, post-WWII conspiracy between the government and religious leaders to suppress discovery of mysterious areas of land known as K-zones, where the dead can be spontaneously brought back to life (a plot device later used by Stephen King in Pet Semetary.) Discovering research done by a man named Zeder, he finds himself on the trail of a shadowy ring of renegade scientists still conducting secret tests on an abandoned site. But Stefano’s life and sanity – as well as that of girlfriend Alessandra (Anne Canovas) – is soon put in extreme jeopardy. Avati serves up some supremely sustained scary sequences, giving ZEDER the distinction of being one of the most frightening Italian horror films of the 1980’s.