a highly-opinionated selection of things happening around town, and sometimes out of town. this month's page here.
sun. oct. 1 suspiria (w/ q&a) 7:00 10:00 PM @ beyond fest @ egyptian boiling point, cop @ aero mon. oct. 2 suspiria (w q&a), opera @ beyond fest @ egyptian tue. oct. 3 night of the living dead (1968) @ beyond fest @ egyptian the texas chain saw massacre 10 PM @ beyond fest @ egyptian haunters: the art of the scare 9:45 PM @ beyond fest @ spielberg @ egyptian the phantom of soho, the mad executioners @ new beverly thu. oct. 5 predator, the running man @ beyond fest @ egyptian fri. oct. 6 woggles @ echo abby MIDNIGHT @ nuart peter kolovos @ handbag factory pan's labyrinth 6:30 PM @ new beverly plus-minus zero, berlin is in germany @ ucla film archive sat. oct. 7 california avocado festival @ carpinteria saccharine trust, numb.er @ smell 78/52 FREE 9:45 PM @ beyond fest @ spielberg @ egyptian battleship potemkin, the man with a movie camera @ aero the champ (1931) 2 PM @ new beverly all-night horror show @ new beverly sun. oct. 8 california avocado festival @ carpinteria an evening with matt groening & lynda barry @ ace hotel theatre baby driver 7 PM, the driver @ beyond fest @ egyptian tashaki miyaki @ viper room the champ (1931) 2 PM @ new beverly eastern cross, in the shadows @ ucla film archive mon. oct. 9 born in east l.a. @ ampas wilshire shark toys, devon williams @ ham & eggs metropolitan (w/ q&a) @ aero tue. oct. 10 bad black FREE 7:15 PM @ beyond fest @ egyptian the killing of a sacred deer 9:15 PM @ beyond fest @ egyptian wed. oct. 11 post life @ smell thu. oct. 12 sound of ceres @ satellite angelo de augustine @ bootleg courtney barnett, kurt vile FREE @ amoeba the make-up @ echo holy wave @ hi hat the gleaners & i (w/ q&a), vagabond @ egyptian fri. oct. 13 drinks, lee fields & the expressions, big search, triptides, budos band, ty segall, holy wave, courtney barnett & kurt vile, etc @ desert daze @ institute of mentalphysics (joshua tree) dalek @ resident return of the living dead MIDNIGHT @ nuart suspiria @ aero sat. oct. 14 sleep, the gories, terry riley, john cale, the make-up, winter, iggy pop, frankie & the witch fingers, king gizzard & the lizard wizard, thurston moore group, etc @ desert daze @ institute of mentalphysics (joshua tree) hope sandoval & the warm inventions @ fonda budos band @ echoplex courtney barnett & kurt vile @ immanuel presbyterian beuys 5 PM @ egyptian sun. oct. 15 spiritualized, hope sandoval & the warm inventions, l.a. witch, the creation factory, allah-las, goggs, etc @ desert daze @ institute of mentalphysics (joshua tree) come and see @ aero wed. oct. 18 earthless @ echo black angels @ mayan the bride of frankenstein 2 PM, son of frankenstein @ new beverly the hired hand, kid blue @ new beverly thu. oct. 19 race & space in los angeles ix FREE @ epfc the fury of a patient man @ egyptian suspiria @ arena the hired hand, kid blue @ new beverly fri. oct. 20 qui @ handbag factory levitation room @ echo the gangster's daughter @ ucla film archive sat. oct. 21 cactus blossoms @ echo allah-las @ regent night of the living dead (1968) @ cinespia @ hollywood forever mia doi todd @ zebulon the bar @ egyptian fragil equilibrio FREE (RSVP) 8 PM @ spielberg @ egyptian marjorie prime, east of eden @ aero the monster squad 2 PM @ new beverly sun. oct. 22 the invisible guest @ egyptian five easy pieces, next stop greenwich village @ aero the monster squad 2 PM @ new beverly horror of dracula 6:30 PM, the curse of frankenstein @ new beverly mon. oct. 23 hello hello hello : lee ranaldo : electric trim @ egyptian horror of dracula, the curse of frankenstein @ new beverly tue. oct. 24 itasca, lee ranaldo @ zebulon antibalas FREE @ amoeba suspiria 7:40 PM @ arena thu. oct. 26 brides of dracula 7 PM @ alex theatre blank tapes @ moroccan lounge mothra, battle in outer space @ egyptian let it fall: los angeles 1982-1992 7:20 PM, guerrilla @ aero the black cat 2 PM, the raven @ new beverly fri. oct. 27 godzilla (1954), the h-man @ egyptian woodpeckers @ aero still walking @ ucla film archive sat. oct. 28 roky erickson @ roxy l.a. anarchist book fair @ leimert park plaza dracula (1931, spanish) 2 PM @ ampas wilshire an american werewolf in london, popcorn, the tingler, hack-o-lantern, shocker, brainscan, death bed: the bed that eats @ all night horrorthon @ aero thee cormans, the premiers @ halloween au go go @ viva cantina el vampiro negro 3 PM, los tallos amargos @ ucla film archive maborosi @ ucla film archive sun. oct. 29 get out 3 PM @ blackout cinema l.a. anarchist book fair @ leimert park plaza ghostbusters (70mm) @ egyptian the haunting (1963) @ aero the old dark house 6:30 PM, the cat and the canary, scared stiff @ new beverly mon. oct. 30 the invisible man returns, invisible agent @ new beverly tue. oct. 31 carnival of souls @ aero suspiria 8:15 PM @ arena repulsion, the tenant @ new beverly wed. nov. 1 colleen, mary lattimore @ zebulon thu. nov. 2 daniel johnston @ orpheum goblin @ regent sat. nov. 4 itasca @ bootleg wand @ hi hat romance tropical @ ucla film archive mon. nov. 6 noyes @ lot 1 wed. nov. 8 survive @ ace hotel theatre fri. nov. 10 eraserhead MIDNIGHT @ nuart tue. nov. 14 the clientele @ teragram wed. nov. 15 upset @ bootleg hope sandoval @ zebulon fri. nov. 17 dead meadow @ wayfarer mark bray discusses "antifa: the anti-fascist handbook" FREE @ skylight books fri. dec. 1 true widow @ resident fri. dec. 15 thee oh sees @ teragram sat. dec. 16 thee oh sees @ teragram WHAT IT IS: ABBY When a minister’s wife becomes posessed by Eshu, the Nigerian god of sexuality, an exorcist is called in to drive the evil spirit away. Dir. William Girdler, 1974, 89 mins. BAD BLACK 2016, 60 min, Uganda, Dir: Isaac Nawibana Are you ready for the craziest, most over-the-top action film ever seen ... from Wakaliwood, Uganda?! Bolstered by a love of action movies and a can-do attitude, the country’s most prolific filmmaker and his motley crew go to extraordinary lengths to create the best action movies known to mankind: from carving guns & ammo pouches out of wood to learning Kung-fu by copying ALL the moves from Bruce Lee films, these men pull out all stops to create wall-to-wall insanity and the effect is hypnotizing. With almost every action move trope imaginable - from heists to car chases, to exploding helicopters and long bouts of hand-to-hand combat - this is the film that makes you realize how painfully lame Hollywood action films look compared to the wild, vivid and wonderful world of Wakaliwood. THE BAR (EL BAR) 2017, Film Factory, 102 min, Spain/Argentina, Dir: Álex de la Iglesia Director Álex de la Iglesia (DAY OF THE BEAST, WITCHING & BITCHING) makes a welcome return with this psychological thriller spiked with black humor. After a patron is killed by an unknown shooter while attempting to leave a Madrid bar, the remaining customers (among them Blanca Suárez, Mario Casas and Carmen Machi) hunker down - and ultimately turn on one another while trying to figure out how to survive and escape. Discussion following EL BAR with director Alex de la Iglesia. BEUYS 2017, 107 min, Germany, Dir: Andres Veiel Thirty years after his death, Joseph Beuys, known worldwide as the man with the hat, the felt and the “Fettecke,” is remembered as a visionary artist. Though his work was once derided in Germany as “the most expensive trash of all time,” Beuys became the first German artist to have a solo exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum in New York. Comprised of previously unpublished audio and visual material, this Golden Bear-nominated documentary creates an intimate portrait of the artist that opens up spaces for ideas and discussion. Capturing the film’s subject as he boxes, chats, lectures and explains art to a dead hare, Veiel also presents Beuys as a family man, teacher and Green Party candidate, whose contradictions and tensions inspired an expanded concept of art that feeds directly into today’s social, political and moral debates. BRAINSCAN, 1994, 96 min. Dir. John Flynn. TERMINATOR 2’s Edward Furlong stars as Michael, a teen loner who plays a new interactive video game and is horrified to discover the killing that took place in the game has spilled over into real life. Frank Langella costars in this surprisingly effective sci-fi chiller. COP 1988, Park Circus , 110 min, United States, Dir: James B. Harris When a cop cares too much, how far is too far? Adapted from James Ellroy’s Blood on the Moon, this brisk crime film stars James Woods as a loose-cannon homicide detective who discovers that the murder of a young woman is actually the work of a serial killer. As the flippant-but-focused cop, Woods is magnetic, and he gets terrific support from Lesley Ann Warren, Charles Durning and Charles Haid (the latter two former costars of Woods in THE CHOIRBOYS). Discussion between films with director James B. Harris. El vampiro negro (Argentina, 1953) Román Viñoly Barreto co-wrote and directed this overlooked Argentinian version of Fritz Lang’s classic M (1931), which deviates from the original even more than Joseph Losey’s 1951 American remake. The prolific Nathán Pinzón – who had appeared in Viñoly Barreto’s highly acclaimed thriller La bestia debe morir a year earlier – steps into Peter Lorre’s iconic role, giving one of the most memorable performances of his long career. El vampiro negro was also an important film for Olga Zubarry. The popular star was able to display her dramatic talents in the role of a cabaret singer who witnesses a murder, winning the Argentine Film Critics Association Award for Best Actress. In addition to its solid cast and screenplay, the film benefits from striking black-and-white photography by Aníbal González Paz, one of Argentina’s most important cinematographers. 35mm, b/w, 90 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. FRÁGIL EQUILIBRIO 2016, 83 min, Spain, Dir: Guillermo García López This Goya-winning documentary tells three intertwined stories taking place on three different continents: Japanese executives in Tokyo caught in the vicious cycle of consumerism, a sub-Saharan community in the path of immigrants leaving Africa for Europe, and families in Spain who have been destroyed by economic downturn. Told through the words of José Mujica, former president of Uruguay, the film is both is a journey through different cultures and an urgent invitation to change. THE FURY OF A PATIENT MAN TARDE PARA LA IRA 2016, Film Factory, 92 min, Spain, Dir: Raúl Arévalo The patient man of the title is José (Antonio de la Torre), a patron of a low-rent Madrid cafe who take an interest in one of its waitresses, Ana (Ruth Díaz). But his intent is not simply romantic - Ana’s husband is a getaway car driver whose prison sentence for a botched jewelry store robbery is almost up. The Gangster's Daughter (Taiwan, 2017) Fresh-faced tomboy Shaowu lives with her grandmother on Kinmen, a sleepy island that was once a Cold War military fortress. When Shaowu gets expelled from school, her estranged gangster father Keigo has no choice but to take her back to the metropolis of Taipei. She idolizes the ultra-cool and heavily tattooed Keigo (played by the iconic Jack Kao), and he secretly enjoys finally being a responsible father. Veteran documentarian Chen Mei-Juin’s subtle and touching debut feature film reaches back to the coming of age stories of early Hou Hsiao-hsien classics like The Boys From Fengkuei while updating them to teeming 21st-century Taipei, the brave new underworld of drug trafficking, and the bittersweet dilemmas of single parenting. DCP, color, in Mandarin and Taiwanese with Chinese and English subtitles, 105 min. Director: Chen Mei-Juin. In-person: director Chen Mei-Juin. GUERRILLA 2017, Showtime, 60 min, UK/USA, Dir: Sam Miller, John Ridley In this six-part Showtime miniseries, leftist couple Babou Ceesay and Freida Pinto are driven from peaceful protest to more violent action in 1970s London, eventually breaking an activist out of prison and joining the underground. With Idris Elba. “‘Guerrilla’ excels because of its interest in how individuals digest revolution … it’s a timely reminder that multiculturalism - and the fear of it - is not new or uniquely American but the long-simmering narrative of the world.” - Sonia Saraiya, Variety. HACK-O-LANTERN, 1988, 87 min. Dir. Jag Mundhra. The attention Grandpa (Hy Pyke) has been lavishing on young Tommy (Gregory Scott Cummins) is not benign - the old man is grooming him to take over a Satanic cult when he grows up. The boy’s brother grows up to become a cop - but can he put an end to the pitchfork killings that seem to swirl around Tommy? This low-budget shocker is peppered with gore, nudity and even a heavy metal video to keep things interesting. HAUNTERS: THE ART OF THE SCARE 2017, USA, Dir: Jon Schnitzer Americans love a good scare at Halloween and nothing quite does it like a haunted house; “haunters” build these houses and act out the roles of the monsters inside, building an atmosphere that resides between the realms of fun and fear for the people who visit year after year. Starting with the history of haunted houses, this comprehensive documentary runs the gamut, including their inception, their evolution and even their future through interviews with fascinating characters who offer unique insights into this rarely-explored world. Panel discussion following with subjects Donald, Jaimie and Daniel Julson, Shar Mayer and John Murdy, and composers Jonathan Snipes, Neil Baldock & Alexander Burke. HELLO HELLO HELLO : LEE RANALDO : ELECTRIC TRIM 2017, 76 min, USA, Dir: Fred Riedel As a member of pioneering alternative rock band Sonic Youth and on his own solo recordings, Lee Ranaldo has revolutionized the sound of the electric guitar. Working with producer Raül Fernandez and collaborators including lyricist Jonathan Lethem, singer Sharon Van Etten, Wilco guitarist Nels Cline and former Sonic Youth cohort Steve Shelley on drums, Ranaldo recorded the new album “Electric Trim” - a process captured in this documentary. Filmed during dozens of recording sessions across a year, this unusually intimate look at the creative process presents a bold, new sound that is a lush and striking departure from Ranaldo’s signature work. Discussion following with director Fred Riedel, performer Lee Ranaldo and album producer Raül Refree. THE INVISIBLE GUEST (CONTRATIEMPO) 2016, Film Factory, 106 min, Spain, Dir: Oriol Paulo At the center of a locked-room mystery is Adrián Doria (Mario Casas), a successful businessman who has been discovered in a hotel suite with the body of his lover. Charged with murder, he enlists top-notch witness preparation expert Virginia Goodman (Ana Wagener). As the clock ticks down to the start of Doria’s trial, Goodman’s relentless questioning of her client’s defense brings to light some troubling inconsistencies. With strong performances and plenty of plot twists, this superbly crafted thriller delivers on the promise of Paulo’s earlier THE BODY. Discussion between films with THE INVISIBLE GUEST actress Ana Wagener. THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER 2017, A24, 109 min, UK/Ireland, Dir: Yorgos Lanthimos Almost guaranteed to spark debate, director Yorgos Lanthimos’ (THE LOBSTER) journey into the heart of darkness is both a thriller and a parable on the evil of inaction. Colin Farrell is Steven, a brilliant neurosurgeon whose clinical attitude extends to his personal life; his interactions with his family feel as regimented as post-surgery conversations with colleagues. But Steven also has a strange friendship with Martin (Barry Keoghan), an awkward 16-year-old. Things take a bizarre turn when Martin tries to bring Steven into his family and makes the doctor a frightening proposition - a choice which will determine who lives and who dies. The uniformly great cast also includes Nicole Kidman and Alicia Silverstone. LET IT FALL: LOS ANGELES 1982-1992 2017, ABC-TV, 145 min, USA, Dir: John Ridley Oscar-winning writer John Ridley’s (12 YEARS A SLAVE) third film as director takes an unflinching look at the 1992 L.A. Uprising, tracing its roots back a decade, unfolding its history as a series of very personal decisions and very public failures. It masterfully weaves heartbreaking firsthand accounts from black, white, Asian and Hispanic Angelenos of all classes, caught up in a cascade of rising tension, culminating in an explosion of anger and fear after the Rodney King verdict. Discussion between films with writer-director John Ridley. Maborosi (Japan, 1995) Several years after the apparent suicide of her husband, Yumiko accepts an arranged marriage and moves with her young son to a small seaside village. She’s immediately embraced by the close-knit community and life seems to resume for her, but the past doesn’t stay the past as small reminders reopen old questions and wounds. Kore-eda sustains a delicate balance between light and shadow in a film about the fragility of the healing process. 35mm, color, in Japanese with English subtitles, 110 min. Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda. In-person: Hirokazu Kore-eda. MARJORIE PRIME 2017, FilmRise, 98 min, USA, Dir: Michael Almereyda Adapted from Jordan Harrison’s play, this moving look at the intersection of human memory and artificial intelligence has Lois Smith reprising her stage role as the title character. In the early stages of dementia, 86-year-old Marjorie lives in Long Island with her daughter, Tess (Geena Davis), and son-in-law, Jon (Tim Robbins). At Jon’s suggestion, Marjorie has been provided with a holographic version of her late husband to slow her memory loss - but the presence of a re-creation of her father doesn’t sit so well with Tess. Co-starring Jon Hamm. Discussion between films with actress Lois Smith. NEXT STOP, GREENWICH VILLAGE 1976, 20th Century Fox, 111 min, USA, Dir: Paul Mazursky Writer-director Paul Mazursky takes a semi-autobiographical look at his days as an aspiring actor in 1950s New York in this engaging dramedy. Against the advice of his mother, fresh-faced Lenny Baker moves to Greenwich Village, where he falls in with a surrogate family of oddballs as he chases stardom. Along with such veteran performers as Shelley Winters, Lois Smith and Lou Jacobi, aspiring actor Bill Murray made his big screen debut in a brief, uncredited role here. POPCORN, 1991, Synapse Films, 91 min. Dir. Mark Herrier. When a group of film students stage an all-night horrorthon at an abandoned movie palace, they include a bizarre short film called “The Possessor,” whose creator killed his family. Maggie (Jill Schoelen) has been having frightening dreams that seem to be connected to the short, and as the festival proceeds, she and her friends are stalked by a mysterious killer. This entertaining mix of old-fashioned creature features and ’80s slashers boasts a great cast including Dee Wallace Stone, Tony Roberts and Ray Walston. RACE AND SPACE IN LOS ANGELES IX The ninth installment of our ongoing series exploring issues of race and space in Los Angeles focuses on community efforts to fight for greater control of neighborhoods before and in the aftermath of the 1992 civil unrest. It will feature a series of grassroots films produced by Michael Zinzun, one of the founders of the Coalition Against Police Abuse (CAPA). CAPA linked rising poverty and unemployment with the growth of police forces and expansion of California’s prison system, a strategy they viewed as a means to contain poor communities of color. Through organizing and mobilizing communities, CAPA offered an alternative strategy to transform inner city neighborhoods from spaces targeted for control to spaces of empowerment. Introduction and discussion by Yusef Omowale and Michele Welsing of The Southern California Library who also curated tonight's event. Romance tropical (Puerto Rico, 1934) The first Puerto Rican sound feature ever made, this film was considered lost for over 80 years, before a print was located in the PHI/Krypton Collection at UCLA. The story concerns a young man who discovers a pre-modern tribe on an island and a fortune in pearls, subsequently falling in love with a beautiful native woman, while his upper-class sweetheart waits in the city. Many famous Puerto Ricans worked on the film, including screenwriter Luis Palés Matos, a national poet and one of the founders of Afro-Antillano poetry, and composer Rafael Muñoz, the Island’s most famous big band leader. Puerto Rican film pioneer and Hollywood veteran Juan E. Viguié produced the film with a $10,000 loan, after seeing Santa (1932) in a San Juan cinema. Like She-Devil Island (1936), the film presents a parable of colonialist exploitation of third world peoples, ironically wrapped in an exotic adventure narrative. 35mm, b/w, 80 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. Director: Juan E. Viguié. 78/52 2017, 91 min, Dir: Alexandre O. Philippe The shower scene in PSYCHO is accepted as one of director Alfred Hitchcock’s most masterful achievements, both technically and in terms of storytelling. This new documentary puts the scene under a microscope, covering its every angle with expert interviews and technical analysis. Through personal stories from filmmakers, actors and fans ranging from Elijah Wood to Peter Bogdanovich, this meditation and celebration of Hitchcock and his legendary shocker paints a picture of a late-’50s film world on the brink of change and shows how PSYCHO delivered that change. Still Walking (Japan, 2008) Hirokazu Kore-eda channeled the experience of his mother’s death into his most incisive, beautifully realized portrait of a family in quiet crisis. When a brother and sister return to their parents’ home to commemorate the death of their sibling years before, subtle tensions and offhanded slights break the breezy summer atmosphere that belies the emotional wounds old and new that hold them all together and apart. 35mm, color, in Japanese with English subtitles, 115 min. Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda. In-person: Hirokazu Kore-eda. WOODPECKERS (CARPINTEROS) 2017, Outsider Pictures, 106 min, Dominican Republic, Dir: José María Cabral Dominican-Haitian Julián (Guadalajara International Film Festival Best Actor Jean Jean) begins a jail sentence for petty theft inside the notorious Najayo prison just outside Santo Domingo. While navigating the indignities, corruption and everyday violence from both guards and fellow inmates, he becomes immersed in the system of "Woodpecking," the unique sign language the male prisoners use to communicate with women in the adjacent penitentiary just 400 feet away. Love blossoms between Julián and one female inmate, Yanelly (Judith Rodriguez Perez), as they stand in windows and out in prison yards. Shot on location at the prison using real inmates for all but the lead roles, this knockout film is filled with atmosphere, sexuality, and grit. Discussion following with director José María Cabral.