a highly-opinionated selection of things happening around town, and sometimes out of town. this month's page here.
tue. dec. 1 the first films of mary pickford @ ampas linwood dunn theater edge of the city 1:30 FREE @ skirball center all tomorrow's parties 8, 11 PM @ silent movie theatre wed. dec. 2 carrie (1952) @ aero theatre thu. dec. 3 earthless @ troubadour benny's video, funny games @ aero theatre police adjective @ melnitz movies @ UCLA james bridges theater dear andy kaufman i hate your guts 8 PM @ silent movie theatre fri. dec. 4 jon brion @ largo repo man MIDNIGHT @ nuart theatre after all @ ucla film archive stunt rock MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre sat. dec. 5 the loons @ mind machine @ bordello aziz ansari @ largo tamaryn, girls @ troubadour voila la liberte @ ucla film archive there's always vanilla 8 PM, the crazies, day of the dead @ new beverly theatre beautiful losers short film group show 7 PM @ silent movie theatre sun. dec. 6 idiot's delight 7 PM, confessions of a nazi spy @ ucla film archive ivanhoe FREE 1 PM RSVP required @ getty center tamaryn @ bootleg theater it's a wonderful life 2 PM @ million dollar theatre the imaginarium of doctor parnassas (sneak preview) @ egyptian theatre the pink panther strikes again, 10 @ new beverly theatre mon. dec. 7 the pink panther strikes again, 10 @ new beverly theatre tue. dec. 8 jonathan richman @ the mint pressure point 1:30 FREE @ skirball center stage fright 1 PM @ lacma a night of the beats @ west coast left coast @ disney hall the pink panther strikes again, 10 @ new beverly theatre wholphin no. 9 & 10 DVD release party 8 PM @ silent movie theatre wed. dec. 9 the prisoner of zenda 8 PM @ ampas samuel goldwyn theater jonathan richman @ the mint suddenly last summer, cat on a hot tin roof @ egyptian theatre on the beach @ aero theatre the finches @ the smell big fan, the wrestler @ new beverly theatre thu. dec. 10 jonathan richman @ the mint ocean's eleven (1960), pal joey @ egyptian theatre big fan, the wrestler @ new beverly theatre fri. dec. 11 bipolar bear, foot village, sic alps @ the smell jon brion @ largo espers @ fernwood (big sur) the cat and the canary, son of frankenstein @ ucla film archive the host @ lacma barking dogs never bite 9:40 PM @ lacma the backyard, i saw the sun @ aero theatre sullivan's travels, the palm beach story @ new beverly theatre sat. dec. 12 mark mcguire @ the smell mike watt & the missingmen @ redwood bar espers @ the sanctuary memories of murder FREE 4:30 @ lacma hollywood UFO 8 PM @ echo park film center mother @ lacma brazil, the fisher king @ egyptian theatre rare silents on 8mm @ spielberg theatre @ egyptian theatre sullivan's travels, the palm beach story @ new beverly theatre skaters 1 AM @ echo curio sun. dec. 13 borderline case 7 PM, the life of an agent @ ucla film archive time bandits, the adventures of baron munchausen @ egyptian theatre thrones @ echoplex mon. dec. 14 the scarlet claw, the spider woman @ ucla film archive bobby birdman @ mandrake bar tue. dec. 15 marc cooper 8:30 PM @ redcat to have and have not 1 PM @ lacma christmas evil, black christmas @ grindhouse film fest @ egyptian theatre wed. dec. 16 the loss of a teardrop diamond (sneak preview) @ aero theatre thu. dec. 17 we're no angels, the three godfathers @ egyptian theatre white ribbon (sneak preview) @ aero theatre watts ensemble @ bootleg theater mia doi todd FREE 8 PM @ flux screening series @ hammer museum fri. dec. 18 five graves to cairo, the emperor waltz @ new beverly theatre jon brion @ largo jason simon @ the stronghold bipolar bear @ the smell white christmas, meet me in st. louis @ egyptian theatre a christmas story, remember the night @ aero theatre sat. dec. 19 five graves to cairo, the emperor waltz @ new beverly theatre gremlins @ devil's night drive-in slap shot MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre it's a wonderful life @ egyptian theatre mr. magoo's christmas carol 4 PM @ aero theatre lawrence of arabia (70mm) @ aero theatre sun. dec. 20 rolling thunder, death wish 3 @ new beverly theatre mary lynn rajskub @ steve allen theater die hard, die hard 2 @ egyptian theatre it's a wonderful life @ aero theatre mon. dec. 21 moving image art 6 PM @ 7 dudley cinema frank fairfield @ the mint rolling thunder, death wish 3 @ new beverly theatre cartoon dump 8 PM @ steve allen theater tue. dec. 22 rolling thunder, death wish 3 @ new beverly theatre sat. dec. 26 the more the merrier, if only you could cook @ aero theatre the dorm that dripped blood MIDNIGHT @ new beverly theatre sun. dec. 27 neil hamburger @ spaceland vertigo (70mm) @ egyptian theatre children of paradise 4 PM @ new beverly theatre neil hamburger @ spaceland mon. dec. 28 children of paradise 8 PM @ new beverly theatre tue. dec. 29 children of paradise 8 PM @ new beverly theatre fri. jan. 1 squirrel nut zippers @ el rey dr. no, you only live twice @ egyptian theatre horse feathers, duck soup @ aero theatre sat. jan. 2 goldfinger, thunderball @ egyptian theatre it happened one night, platinum blonde @ aero theatre sun. jan. 3 moonraker, for your eyes only @ egyptian theatre never give a sucker an even break, man on the flying trapeze @ aero theatre tue. jan. 5 bipolar bear @ l'keg gallery jerry beck's animation tuesdays (TBA) 8 PM @ silent movie theatre wed. jan. 6 bipolar bear @ the smell lars and the real girl FREE 7 PM @ hammer museum thu. jan. 7 youth in revolt (sneak preview) FREE 7 PM @ hammer museum fri. jan. 8 sunset boulevard MIDNIGHT @ nuart sonic youth, sic alps @ fox theater (pomona) sat. jan. 9 sonic youth, sic alps @ wiltern sun. jan. 10 neil hamburger presents a tribute to frank sinatra jr. 8 PM @ silent movie theatre joe sacco @ skylight books wed. jan. 13 steven severin's music to silents 8 PM @ silent movie theatre thu. jan. 14 blood of a poet (w/ live score) 8 PM @ silent movie theatre sat. jan. 16 mose allison @ largo dave hillyard @ the rox meho plaza @ pehrspace sun. jan. 17 mose allison @ largo wed. jan. 20 black lips @ detroit bar thu. jan. 21 gary panter (lecture) 7 PM @ hammer museum sat. jan. 23 the adventures of robin hood (1938) FREE 1 PM RSVP required @ getty center black lips, nobunny @ el rey sun. jan. 24 knights of the round table FREE 1 PM RSVP required @ getty center tue. jan. 26 the films of shana moulton 8 PM @ silent movie theatre american splendor 7 PM, the confessions of robert crumb FREE @ hammer museum sat. feb. 13 royce hall organ & silent film 2 PM @ ucla royce hall psycho 2 PM, 8 PM @ alex theatre WHAT IT IS: THE ADVENTURES OF ROBIN HOOD The most acclaimed screen version of the King of Sherwood Forest, with action, drama and romance that has satisfied audiences for years. Errol Flynn is Robin Hood to Olivia de Havilland's Maid Marion. Basil Rathbone and Claude Rains are the villains. Michael Curtiz---USA---1938---102 mins. AFTER ALL… (És mégis...) (1990, Hungary/Germany) Directed by Zsolt Kézdi-Kovács This emotional drama of personal and public morality concerns Kristóf Zeyk, a 50-year-old journalist whose life undergoes enormous changes after the fall of Hungary’s communist government. Personally opposed to the old regime but never to the point of endangering his career, he is now termed a “Stalinist,” which troubles him deeply. Turning inward, and seeking the support of his young daughter, he reassesses his convictions and seeks a way forward in this new world. Screenplay: Zsolt Kézdi-Kovács. Cinematographer: Balázs Sara. Editor: Éva Kárementö. Cast: András Kozák, Lili Monori, László Mensáros. Presented in Hungarian dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 95 min. All Tomorrow's Parties Ever wonder what summer camp with Nick Cave, Daniel Johnston and Iggy Pop would feel like? The kaleidoscopic All Tomorrow’s Parties is a headlong plunge into the transatlantic music festival of the same name, in which an out-of-season holiday camp on the coast of England is transmogrified into a swirling combination of cutting-edge music, crazy golf and chalet-living, all curated by a single band or artist. A riotous romp through the festival's past several years, the film's got live performances from a ridiculous amount of great bands both new and old: Sonic Youth, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Gossip, Mogwai, GZA, Iggy and the Stooges, Slint, Animal Collective, Grizzly Bear, Belle and Sebastian, Patti Smith, Battles, Grinderman (featuring Nick Cave), Portishead and more. In the spirit of the fest, All Tomorrow's Parties is also a bursting bricolage originating from the found or contributed HD, Super-8, camcorder and mobile phone footage of over two hundred filmmakers, with key sequences from co-director Jonathan Caouette (Tarnation). And did we mention that there will be splitscreens? All great concert films deserve a few splitscreens.DJ Michael Stock (Part Time Punks) will be manning the decks both before and after the screenings! Dir. Jonathan Caouette & various, 2009, digital presentation, 82 min. THE BACKYARD (EL TRASPATIO), 2009, Mexico, 122 min, Dir. Sabina Berman. Mexico City Police Academy graduate Blanca Bravo is young, strong, stern and idealistic when she’s confronted with a series of murdered women. Blanca begins investigating, and very soon discovers a society at odds with itself; a society alienated by injustice and violence - and by the indifference of its people. Based on events that took place in 1996 in the Mexican border town of Juarez. In Spanish with English subtitles. Barking Dogs Never Bite (Peullandaseu-ui Gae) 2000/color/106 min. | Scr: Bong Joon-ho, Song Ji-ho, Derek Son Tae-woong; dir: Bong Joon-ho; w/ Lee Sung-jae, Bae Doona, Byeon Hee-bong. Bong's debut feature is a crazed romantic comedy played out amid the sprawling urban anonymity of colossal apartment blocks. In need of bribe money to transition from unpaid college lecturer to full-fledged professor and seeking relief from the strain of marriage, Lee idles away his days at home. But when he snaps due to a dog ceaselessly yapping somewhere in the building, he becomes embroiled in a mordant chain of events involving his oddball neighbors and the disparate fates of man's best friend. "Beautiful Losers" Short Film Group Show In the early 1990's a loose-knit group of likeminded outsiders (which included Harmony Korine, Ed Templeton, Shepard Fairey, Mike Mills and Aaron Rose, among others) found common ground at a little Chinatown storefront gallery. Rooted in the DIY subcultures of skateboarding, surf, punk, hip-hop & graffiti, they made art that reflected the lifestyles they led. Developing their craft with almost no influence from the "establishment" art world, this group, and the subcultures they sprang from, have now become a movement that has been transforming pop culture. In celebration of the DVD release of Beautiful Losers, Aaron Rose will be showcasing short films by key artists in his critically acclaimed documentary, as well as never-before-seen interviews with artists from the scene, sharing personal stories behind one of the most influential cultural moments of a generation. Films and guests to be announced in the coming weeks. BENNY’S VIDEO, 1992, Wega Film, 105 min. Dir. Michael Haneke. Obsessed with recording mundane street life with his video camera, 14-year-old Benny ends up videotaping himself murdering a girlfriend. The quiet teen runs the tape for his stunned parents, who choose to conceal his crime. In German with English subtitles. BIG FAN Paul Aufiero, a 35-year-old parking-garage attendant from Staten Island, is the self-described "world's biggest New York Giants fan". He lives at home with his mother, spending his off hours calling in to local sports-radio station 760 The Zone, where he rants in support of his beloved team, often against his mysterious on-air rival, Eagles fan Philadelphia Phil. His family berates him for doing nothing with his life, but they don't understand the depth of his love of the Giants or the responsibility his fandom carries. One night, Paul and his best friend Sal spot Giants star linebacker Quantrell Bishop at a gas station in their neighborhood. They impulsively follow his limo into Manhattan, to a strip club, where they hang in the background, agog at their hero. Paul cautiously decides to approach him, stepping into the rarefied air of football stardom--and things do not go as planned. The fallout of this chance encounter brings Paul's world crashing down around him as his family, the team, the media and the authorities engage in a tug of war over Paul, testing his allegiances and calling into question everything he believes in. Meanwhile, the Giants march toward a late-season showdown with the Eagles, unaware that sometimes the most brutal struggles take place far from the field of play. Following up his first filmed screenplay, THE WRESTLER, writer-director Robert Siegel once again demonstrates a unique and potent vision of the human experience, in all of it its harsh truths and hopeful humanity BLACK CHRISTMAS (from IMDB) It's time for Christmas break, and the sorority sisters make plans for the holiday, but the strange anonymous phone calls are beginning to put them on edge. When Clare disappears, they contact the police, who don't express much concern. Meanwhile Jess is planning to get an abortion, but boyfriend Peter is very much against it. The police finally begin to get concerned when a 13-year-old girl is found dead in the park. They set up a wiretap to the sorority house, but will they be in time to prevent a sorority girl attrition problem? Blood of a Poet (world premiere of new live score by Steven Severin!) "It is often said that Blood Of A Poet is a surrealist film. However, surrealism did not exist when I first thought of it." -- Jean Cocteau For the first time ever, Severin will perform live his brand-new score for French master Jean Cocteau's debut 1930 film. As scandalous as Bunuel's L'Age D'Or upon its original release in the same year, Cocteau's heady mix of startling-for-its-time camera technique, voyeuristic lust and mindbending imagery straight from the subconsciousness serves as a kind of Rosetta stone both for the European avant garde and for the controlling images of Cocteau's cinema in general. The film's tableaux revolve around a young poet whose drawings instigate bizarre incidents: a statue comes to life, a mirror leads through to a corridor (later explored in Cocteau's Orpheus), a ritualistic suicide results in reincarnation. Cocteau provides no clear answers, and the film's pure enjoyment derives from trying to sort through the maze of fragmented pieces. BORDERLINE CASE (2006) Directed by Peter Szalay The heart wrenching chronicle of the Iron Curtain's final victim; a German citizen killed during his attempt to cross Hungary's border to Austria, mere days before the border was opened. Video, 32 min. CARRIE, 1952, Paramount, 118 min. Dir. William Wyler. Restaurant manager Laurence Olivier loses everything due to his obsession with small-town girl Jennifer Jones in William Wyler's expert adaptation of Theodore Dreiser's novel SISTER CARRIE. Film Critic Kevin Thomas will introduce the film. THE CAT AND THE CANARY (1939) Directed by Elliott Mugent In the second studio remake of the silent old dark house classic, Bob Hope matches every bump in the night with a trademark one liner as someone or something tries to keep Paulette Goddard’s naďve waif from inheriting a fortune. For all the film’s comic sensibilities, director Elliott Mugent doesn’t skimp on the creepy atmospherics in this genre-bending treat. Paramount Pictures. Producer: Arthur Hornblow, Jr.. Screenplay: Lynn Starling. Cinematographer: Charles Lang. Editor: Archie Marshek. Cast: Bob Hope, Paulette Goddard, John Beal, Douglass Montgomery, Gale Sondergaard. 35mm, B/W, 72 min. CHILDREN OF PARADISE Set in the 1840s, when pantomime and melodrama were at their height on Paris' famed theater street, the Boulevard du Crime, Marcel Carne's delicate yet elaborate portrait of the actors and thieves who made the Boulevard their home has all the passion, intelligence and authority of a truly great work of art. "...it unfolds new meanings with each viewing" (Pauline Kael). "Anyone who can resist its charm deserves never to see Paris" (Andrew Sarris). In French with English subtitles. Marcel Carne---France---1945---190 mins. CHRISTMAS EVIL (from IMDB) Widely recognized as the best of the Christmas horror efforts, Christmas Evil is the story of a boy who loves Christmas. He is scarred as a boy when he learns that Santa is not real. Throughout the rest of his life, the toy-maker tries to make the Christmas spirit a reality. He becomes obsessed with the behavior of children and the quality of the toys he makes. When he is met with hypocrisy and cynicism, the resulting snap causes him to go on a yuletide killing spree to complete this dark comedic horror. CONFESSIONS OF A NAZI SPY (1939) Directed by Anatole Litvak Based on a sensational Nazi espionage trial in 1938, Confessions was the first studio film to address Fascism and Hitler’s rise to power given that Germany was Hollywood’s largest European market. While Edward G. Robinson reprises the role of G-man he had played in other Warners films, Sanders creates a suave, sophisticated and thoroughly evil Nazi, a perennial characterization. Warner Bros.. Producer: Robert Lord. Screenplay: Milton Krims, John Wexler. Cinematographer: Sol Polito. Editor: Ernest Haller. Cast: Francis Lederer, Edward G. Robinson, George Sanders, Paul Lukas, Lya Lys. 16mm, B/W, 104 min. THE CONFESSIONS OF ROBERT CRUMB In this 1987 BBC commissioned documentary, Robert Crumb presents himself through a series of tongue-in-cheek scenes and interviews. The confessions include his loneliness, obsessions with women, bewilderment by fame, and his nervous breakdown in 1973. (1987, color, 60 min. WRITER: Robert Crumb) THE CRAZIES A government plane carrying a biological warfare virus suddenly crashes near a small Pennsylvania town resulting in a poisoned water supply. When the residents embark on a chaotic, murderous rampage, the government sends in the army, unannounced, to quarantine the town and resolve the anarchy. A small war breaks out when the citizens find themselves caught between a lethal disease, their crazed neighbors and an unexplained occupying army. George A. Romero---USA---1973---103 mins. DAY OF THE DEAD In the third and final installment in George A. Romero's Dead trilogy (preceded by Night of the Living Dead and Dawn of the Dead), the walking dead have taken over the world. Only a small band of scientists and soldiers remain and have taken refuge in an underground missile silo, where a borderline mad scientist attempts to control the hordes of zombies by experimenting on them. Fueled by fear, claustrophobia and a power struggle between the soldiers and scientists, all hell breaks loose and the remaining human survivors must engage in a horrific last ditch battle for life with thousands of the walking dead. George A. Romero---USA---1985---102 mins. Dear Andy Kaufman, I Hate Your Guts! The great provocateur Andy Kaufman died 25 years ago, and tonight we honor his legacy with the release of the new Process book "Dear Andy Kauman, I Hate Your Guts!" and an evening of rare and never-before-seen solid Kaufman gold pulled from the video archives of Lynne Margulies (Kaufman's girlfriend, director of the Kaufman doc I'm from Hollywood, and author of the book). Margulies will present a treasure trove of rarities including recently unearthed footage from Kaufman's brief but illustrious career as "Intergender Wrestling Champion of the World," his legendary, never-before-seen performance at LA Improv's "Midnight Snacks" in 1975, and a video, allegedly made by a German film crew, of someone driving to the Kaufman family plot in New Jersey and exhuming Andy’s corpse. And, as a grand finale for the evening, none other than TONY CLIFTON has threatened to appear in his only West Coast performance for more than half a decade. Don't miss it! EDGE OF THE CITY (1957, 85 min. No MPAA rating.) Axel Nordmann (John Cassavetes) and Tommy Tyler (Sidney Poitier) are a white and a black man who make friends working in the New York rail yards. But when their racist boss (Jack Warden) turns violent, Nordmann must decide whether to take a stand or stay out of trouble. Directed by Martin Ritt (Norma Rae). THE FIRST FILMS OF MARY PICKFORD Hosted by Christel Schmidt of the Library of Congress. Presented on a 1909 hand-cranked Power’s Model 6 Cameragraph motion picture machine restored and cranked by Joe Rinaudo. Featuring live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. It was one hundred years ago that a young Broadway actress from Canada would hesitantly accept work in “the flickers” at the Biograph Studios in New York in an effort to make ends meet. Within weeks of her appearances in D.W. Griffith’s stock company she was already being singled out by audiences. Eventually to become known as “America’s Sweetheart,” Mary Pickford would emerge as one of motion pictures’ earliest and most enduring stars and a seminal force in early Hollywood filmmaking. The Academy, which Pickford helped found, celebrates her filmmaking centennial with a selection of films from her first year including “They Would Elope,” “The Trick That Failed,” “A Midnight Adventure,” “The Mountaineer’s Honor” and “To Save Her Soul.” All prints will be in 35mm, some newly restored, and are drawn from the collection of the Library of Congress. FIVE GRAVES TO CAIRO (from IMDB) June, 1942. The British Army, retreating ahead of victorious Rommel, leaves a lone survivor on the Egyptian border--Corporal John Bramble, who finds refuge at a remote desert hotel...soon to be German HQ. To survive, Bramble assumes an identity which proves perilous. The new guest of honor is none other than Rommel, hinting of his secret strategy, code-named 'five graves.' And the fate of the British in Egypt depends on whether a humble corporal can penetrate the secret... Dir. Billy Wilder, 1943, 96 mins. FUNNY GAMES, 1997, Kino, 108 min. Dir. Michael Haneke. The handsome Paul and the overweight Peter force themselves into the happy life of a bourgeois couple and their son as they unpack at their lakeside paradise. A spine-chilling portrait of an Austrian family imprisoned by a pair of sadistic killers, FUNNY GAMES seldom shows any act of violence but maintains its grip on our emotions. In German with English subtitles. HOLLYWOOD UFO Journey into a community of self styled paranormal investigators and alleged abductees that stretches from East Hollywood to Nevada’s Area 51. Award winning film maker George Willis pushes UFO mythology beyond it’s 1950’s flying saucer stereotypes as he explores these bizarre personal accounts of modern day alien abduction. This quirky documentary incorporates declassified government footage, vintage educational programs, and classic science fiction films as a backdrop for the history of UFO conspiracies. It contains some graphic images, which may shock and disturb you. Viewer discretion is advised! FILMMAKER GEORGE WILLIS IN ATTENDANCE! The Host (Gwoemul) 2006/color/119 min. | Scr: Baek Chul-hyun and Bong Joon-ho, dir: Bong Joon-ho; w/ Song Kang-ho, Byeon Hie-bong, Park Hae-il, Bae Du-na, Ko Ah-sung. From his food stand on the idyllic banks of Seoul's Han River goofball, bleach-blond Song witnesses a monstrous creature rise from the murky waters and wreak havoc on passersby in broad daylight and scoop up his tween daughter Ko with its tentacles and drag her into the deep. With the site cordoned off by a joint Korean and US military task force and fears rising of a virus spreading by those who came into contact with the mutant slimeball, Song receives an improbable call from Ko on his cell phone. Deciding to uncover the beast's mysterious lair, he breaks out of quarantine and forms a motley rescue team that includes his archery-champ sister and spitfire salaryman brother. With big-budget special effects from Weta Workshop (King Kong, The Lord of the Rings) and The Orphanage (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Sin City), Bong's monster movie is equal parts pace-quickening adventure and sharply-observed human drama. It also remains the highest-grossing Korean film of all time and one of the country's most acclaimed cinematic exports. "Bong's most complete statement about the world we inhabit, and the most beautiful one as well."—Gary Indiana, Artforum International. IDIOT'S DELIGHT (1939) Directed by Clarence Brown The story concerns a motley crew of American ex-patriots holed up in a Swiss mountain resort as war clouds gather around them. The original Broadway play by Robert E. Sherwood won a Pulitzer Prize, but this MGM adaptation failed at the box office. Nevertheless, this is an interesting document of America’s collective psyche in 1939, torn between isolationism and the desire to help those struggling against Fascism. MGM. Producer: Hunt Stromberg. Screenplay: Robert E. Sherwood. Cinematographer: William Daniels. Editor: Robert J. Kern. Cast: Norma Shearer, Clark Gable, Edward Arnold, Joseph Schildkraut, Burgess Meredith. 35mm, B/W, 100 min. IF ONLY YOU COULD COOK, 1935, Sony Repertory, 72 min. Dir. William A. Seitzer. Jean Arthur plays a homeless woman who persuades Herbert Marshall to pose as her husband so they can get maid-and-butler jobs. (Natch, she doesn’t know that he’s really a millionaire.) I SAW THE SUN (GUNESI GORDUM), 2009, Turkey, 120 min. Dir. Mahsun Kirmizigul. With the introduction of forced migration policies, the Altun clan finds itself wrenched from the mountain village it has called home for generations. Spanning a period of 25 years, the film recounts the experiences of the family members as they struggle to find their feet in alien surroundings. In Turkish with English subtitles. IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT, 1934, Sony Repertory, 105 min. Dir. Frank Capra. The first film to win all five major Oscars remains a jewel of timing and charm, as runaway bride Claudette Colbert finds herself saddled with pushy reporter Clark Gable, who smells the story of his career. IVANHOE An elaborately staged costume drama based on the novel by Sir Walter Scott, with an all-star cast including Robert Taylor, Elizabeth Taylor, Joan Fontaine, Emlyn Williams and others. Richard Thorpe---USA---1952---106 mins. KNIGHTS OF THE ROUND TABLE Robert Taylor, Ava Gardner and Mel Ferrer star as King Arthur, Guinevere and Lancelot in MGM's first production done in Cinemascope. A lavish telling of the King Arthur legend shot on location in England. Richard Thorpe---USA---1953---117 mins. THE LIFE OF AN AGENT: SECRET POLICE TRAINING FILMS FROM THE COMMUNIST ERA (2004, Hungary) Directed by Gábor Zsigmond Papp A rare curiosity, creepy and illuminating, this recent documentary assembles clips from a little-known cache of instructional films for the Secret Police in Hungary’s Communist era. Actors dramatize such important procedural matters as entering and leaving homes without detection, planting bugs, enlisting other officers and identifying effective drop-off points for secret documents. The film reveals the heights of paranoia to which agents (and presumably citizens) were subject in the old Communist state. Presented in Hungarian dialogue with English subtitles. Video, 54 min. THE LOSS OF A TEARDROP DIAMOND, 2009, Paladin, 102 min. Dir. Jodie Markell. This new drama based on a recently rediscovered original screenplay by Tennessee Williams is set in the Roaring Twenties and tells the story of Fisher Willow (Bryce Dallas Howard) a headstrong young southern heiress who rebels by asking the impoverished but handsome Jimmy Dobyne (Chris Evans) to escort her to the major social events of the season. The relationship is purely a business arrangement, with Fisher paying for Jimmy’s time and attention, but when she discovers she really loves him, she finds it impossible to earn the affection she tried to buy. Also starring Ellen Burstyn, Ann-Margret and Will Patton. Discussion following with director Jodie Markell and actor Bryce Dallas Howard. MAN ON THE FLYING TRAPEZE, 1935, Universal, 65 min. Dir. Clyde Bruckman. Henpecked husband Ambrose Wolfinger (W.C. Fields) concocts a scheme to leave work early so he can catch the exploits of his favorite wrestler, but is sabotaged at every turn by his oddball family, especially his domineering wife (Kathleen Howard) and mooching brother-in-law, Grady Sutton (THE BANK DICK). Memories of Murder (Salinui chueok) 2003/color/132 min. | Scr: Kim Kwang-rim, Bong Joon-ho, Shim Sung-bo; dir: Bong Joon-ho; w/ Song Kang-ho, Kim Sang-kyung, Kim Roe-ha. It's 1986 and women have been turning up dead in a remote rural hamlet. Two reluctantly partnered cops, fireball local boy Song and by-the-book Seoul detective Kim, resolve to bring their killer to justice. But in the days before DNA testing or modern forensics the investigators are forced to rely mainly on intuition and brute force to track down the elusive murderer, who has a habit of requesting that a radio station play a certain song before he strikes. Bong offers up a hardboiled policier with social-realist details, striking widescreen compositions in shades of steely blue and gray, and plenty of unpredictable comic relief. Based on the true story of South Korea's first serial killer, the film secured Bong's stature on the international scene. "An altogether remarkable piece of work, deepening the genre while whipping its skin off, satirizing an entire nation's nearsighted apathy as it wonders, almost aloud, about the nature of truth, evidence and social belonging."—Michael Atkinson, The Village Voice. Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol 1962, NBC, 52 min. Join us for a screening of the first animated Christmas special, which premiered on NBC in 1962. With music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Bob Merrill and the voices of Jim Backus, Jack Cassidy, Jane Kean and Morey Amsterdam, this 52-minute adaptation of Dickens - cleverly presented as a play within a play (with the nearsighted Magoo playing Scrooge on Broadway) - paved the way for a slew of animated holiday specials. THE MORE THE MERRIER, 1943, Sony Repertory, 104 min. Dir. George Stevens. Jean Arthur reluctantly sublets half her apartment to retired millionaire Charles Coburn - who promptly sublets half of his half to dreamy soldier Joel McCrea! Coburn won an Oscar for his inspired performance in this captivating film, which also was nominated for Best Picture, Director, Actress, Story and Screenplay. Mother (Madeo) 2009/color/128 min. | Scr: Park Eun-kyo, Bong Joon-ho; dir: Bong Joon-ho w/ Kim Hye-Ja, Won Bin. Though little known outside Korea, Kim Hye-ja is a domestic legend thanks to three decades' worth of film and television roles playing matriarchs. But under Bong's tutelage, Kim delivers a fascinating portrait of madly devotional motherhood poles apart from her reputation. When her only, adult son is accused of murdering a teenage school girl, widowed acupuncturist Kim turns rogue detective to try and clear his name. As she gathers evidence—a bloody golf club, a hacked cell phone—Kim exposes the not-so-innocent victim's tangled net of relationships. "Pushing past the bounds of conventional film noir… (and) peppered with savage humor and colored with visually engaging and carefully composed scenes, the film probes deeper and deeper into the cruelties, falsities and contempt of its small town. Bong crafts a new grammar of imagery to depict his disturbing yet thought-provoking ideas."—Toronto Film Festival. MOVING IMAGE ART - 7:30pm. Probing survey of cinema from pioneer Melies and experimentalist Vertov to maverick Welles and preservationist Henri Langlois. 6pm: rare Motown film of The Temptations. NEVER GIVE A SUCKER AN EVEN BREAK, 1941, Universal, 71 min. Dir. Edward F. Cline. W.C. Fields hopes to sell a script to Esoteric Studios. Which includes Fields falling out of an airplane trying to retrieve a bottle and finding himself in the home of Mrs. Hemogloben (Margaret Dumont) and a teenage girl (Gloria Jean) who immediately falls in love with him. Also features Leon Errol and Franklin Pangborn. PAL JOEY, 1957, Sony Repertory, 111 min. Dir. George Sidney. A film that played at the Egyptian on its initial release (52 years ago!), Kim Novak stars alongside Frank Sinatra and Rita Hayworth in this musical tale of showbiz romance. When "mousy" chorus girl Linda English (Novak) holds out against the advances of womanizing crooner Joey Evans (Sinatra), his interest in her increases ten-fold. Wealthy widow and financier Vera Simpson (Hayworth) meets Joey and agrees to underwrite his private nightclub venture, but has a jealous change of heart when she learns of his affections for Linda. THE PALM BEACH STORY "One of the giddiest and most chaotic of Preston Sturges' satiric orgies. The romantic problems of the leads (Joel McCrea and Claudette Colbert) get shoved aside by the secondary characters. Colbert, travelling by train, gets involved with a bunch of drunken millionaires who stage an informal skeet shoot in the club car and demolish the glassware. Sturges' comic invention soars" (Pauline Kael). Preston Sturges---USA---1942---88 mins. THE PINK PANTHER STRIKES AGAIN Inspector Clouseau is back on the job and before the case is solved, expect an avalanche of comic anarchy. The character created by Blake Edwards and brought to amazing life by Peter Sellers must now defeat his former boss, Herbert Lom, who has been driven mad by the luckiest klutz alive. Lom has a gaunt ray gun ready to pulverize the planet from a small castle in Bavaria if Clouseau is not assassinated by the security agents of the entire world. With Lesley-Anne Down, Omar Sharif, Colin Blakely and Burt Kwouk. Blake Edwards---Great Britain---1976---103 mins. PLATINUM BLONDE, 1931, Sony Repertory, 90 min. Dir. Frank Capra. Reporter Bobby Williams marries heiress Jean Harlow and quickly starts to realize he’s woefully out of place in this, Frank Capra’s first successful stab at screwball romantic comedy. Capra’s satire of the rich and celebration of the working man were tailor-made for Depression-era audiences, and seem strangely timely now as well… POLICE, ADJECTIVE Cristi is a policeman who refuses to arrest a young man who offers hash to two of his school mates. "Offering" is punished by the law. Cristi believes that the law will change, he does not want the life of a young man he considers irresponsible to be a burden on his conscience. For his superior the word conscience has an entirely different meaning... FIPRESCI Critics Prize, Un Certain Regard, 2009 Cannes Film Festival "a perfectly timed, slow-to-boil absurdist comedy...further proof of the strength of the Romanian New Wave" -Manohla Dargis, NEW YORK TIMES “A small masterpiece...has something of the deadpan theatricality that characterized early Jim Jarmusch." -J. Hoberman, VILLAGE VOICE "Certainly the smartest film I’ve seen this year...The richness of Porumboui’s seemingly simple creation allows it to be read as a reverse policier, a social drama, an attenuated art film bordering on parody, a moral tale. The film’s intelligence does not drive itself home until in its last remarkable scenes." -Mark Peranson, CINEMASCOPE DIRECTOR and WRITER: Corneliu Poromboiu CAST: Dragos Bucur, Vlad Ivanov, Ivan Stoica, Irina Saulescu An IFC Films release In Romanian with English subtitles 115 min PRESSURE POINT (1962, 89 min. No MPAA rating.) Stanley Kramer (Inherit the Wind) produced this complex film about the match of wits between an African American prison psychiatrist (Sidney Poitier) and a Nazi sympathizer (Bobby Darin). Told through a series of flashbacks, the film comes to a boil when the doctor's integrity and prejudice are questioned. Also starring Peter Falk. THE PRISONER OF ZENDA The Academy's Science and Technology Council presents “The Prisoner of Zenda” (1937). Featuring a 35mm print from the UCLA Film & Television Archive. Hosted by Academy governor Craig Barron. In commemoration of what would have been Douglas Fairbanks, Jr.“s 100th birthday, Oscar®-winning visual effects supervisor Craig Barron will examine the innovative photographic and sound effects used in creating the classic 1937 film “The Prisoner of Zenda,” which featured Fairbanks along with Ronald Colman, Madeleine Carroll, Raymond Massey, C. Aubrey Smith and David Niven. Based on the 1894 adventure novel by Anthony Hope, “Zenda” tells the story of the soon-to-be-crowned King of Ruritania (Colman), who is abducted by his rival Black Michael (Massey) on the eve of his coronation, and the distant cousin Rudolf Rassendyll (also played by Colman) who must impersonate him in order to save the monarchy. From a technical perspective, “Zenda” stands out as being one of the first Hollywood sound films to successfully enable one actor (Colman) to appear as two different characters within the same shot, using in-camera split-screens and an audio playback system. The evening will feature rare behind-the-scenes color footage of “Zenda” from the Academy Film Archive“s Home Movie Collection, including footage of the film“s cinematographer James Wong Howe and his camera crew, along with Fairbanks practicing sword fighting for the film. The presentation will also include never-before-seen camera tests from the personal collection of the film“s visual effects cameraman Clarence Slifer that show how many of the film“s illusions were created. Directed by John Cromwell. Produced by David O. Selznick. Screenplay John L. Balderston. Adaptation Wells Root. Based on the novel by Anthony Hope and the play by Edward E. Rose. Cinematography James Wong Howe. Special Effects Jack Cosgrove. Sound Oscar Lagerstrom. Selznick International Pictures; United Artists. 1937. 35mm. 101 mins. RARE SILENTS ON 8MM, 120 min. Before Blu-Ray, before VHS, there was 8mm film. The American Cinematheque is proud to present films impossible to find in today’s formats: rare silent gems, preserved on beautiful 8mm prints made for American living rooms of the 1950s-1970s. In 1916’s THE NARROW TRAIL, star William S. Hart combines brooding machismo with boyish vulnerability. With shorts by Georges Melies (1903’s "The Monster" and 1904’s "The Terrible Turkish Executioner"), D.W. Griffith’s "Sands O’Dee" (1912); and a Keystone comedy from 1916, "A Movie Star." REMEMBER THE NIGHT, 1940, Universal, 94 min. Dir. Mitchell Leisen. In this romantic holiday classic, Barbara Stanwyck is arrested for shoplifting during the Christmas season. District Attorney Fred MacMurray is assigned to prosecute her, but instead falls in love. Preston Sturges (SULLIVAN’S TRAVELS) wrote the witty and surprisingly nostalgic script just before he turned to directing. ROYCE HALL ORGAN & SILENT FILM Audiences of all ages are transported back to Hollywood’s silent film heyday of the 1920s during this always-popular event. This year, German organist Otto Krämer accompanies a selection of short comedies from Laurel and Hardy and other masters of the form. Krämer is renowned for his skills at improvisation – he once created a spontaneous symphony – and incorporation of new sounds into old musical forms. So get ready for a movie experience that looks vintage, but sounds fresh. THE SCARLET CLAW (1944) Directed by Roy William Neill Basil Rathbone, all cool urbanity, shines in this brooding, suspenseful installment in Universal Pictures’ long-running Holmes series, for which the versatile actor is still best remembered. An unusual Holmes entry set in Canada, the story concerns a series of bizarre murders that the Québécois villagers attribute to a legendary ghost. Holmes chases down numerous leads on his way to identifying the real killer, assisted by Nigel Bruce’s (as usually) befuddled Dr. Watson. Preserved by the UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by Hugh Hefner. Universal Pictures. Producer: Roy William Neill. Screenplay: Edmund L. Hartmann, Roy William Neill. Cinematographer: George Robinson. Editor: Paul Landres. Cast: Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Gerald Hamer, Paul Cavanagh. 35mm, B/W, 74 min. SLAP SHOT Paul Newman stars in this rowdy hockey-drama by George Roy Hill (The Sting). A down-and-out coach (Newman) finds his career and morale rejuvenated after the rough-playing, profanity-spewing Hanson brothers join his team. Newman is great is this fun film and the Hanson brothers have become hockey icons for their embodiment of the game's free-for-all attitude. A film that can be appreciated by sports fans and non-fans alike. George Roy Hill---USA---1977---123 mins. SON OF FRANKENSTEIN (1939) Directed by Rowland V. Lee The son of the notorious “Maker of Monsters” (Rathbone) moves with his wife and young son into the ruins of castle Frankenstein (presumably for the good schools) where he becomes obsessed with reviving his father’s experiments. The third installment in Universal’s Frankenstein series features classic chills amid a stripped-down but striking visual style with journeyman director Rowland V. Lee at the helm. Universal Pictures. Producer: Rowland V. Lee. Screenplay: Willis Cooper. Cinematographer: George Robinson. Editor: Ted Kent. Cast: Basil Rathbone, Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lionel Atwill, Josephine Hutchinson. 35mm, B/W, 95 min. THE SPIDER WOMAN (1944) Directed by Roy William Neill Holmes (Rathbone) investigates a series of “suicides,” suspecting the male victims were actually killed by a femme fatale. He fakes his own death and assumes the persona of an East Indian officer to get close to suspect Andrea Spedding (Gale Sondergaard). When his cover is blown, Holmes becomes tangled in the spider’s web. Sondergaard, five years from career ruin (owing to her marriage to blacklisted director Herbert Biberman), is in fine form as the scheming villainess. Preserved by the UCLA Film & Television Archive with funding provided by Hugh Hefner. Universal Pictures. Producer: Roy William Neill. Screenplay: Bertram Milhauser. Cinematographer: Charles Van Enger. Editor: William Austin. Cast: Basil Rathbone, Nigel Bruce, Gale Sondergaard, Dennis Hoey. 35mm, B/W, 62 min. Stage Fright 1950/b&w/113 min. | Scr: Whitfield Cook; dir: Alfred Hitchcock; w/ Jane Wyman, Marlene Dietrich, Michael Wilding. An acting student goes undercover to prove a singing star killed her husband. Steven Severin's "Music To Silents" "From the symmetry of forms as two women play against mirrors in 'In Loop,' to the sexual and violent tones of 'The Bad Dropper' and 'Third Bride' –- what really caught my eye was 'Mercury Gash.' Accompanied by flanger-style effects, the imagery was nothing short of Dionysian. A frenzied, orgiastic experience, as images of surreal sexual positions shuttled by, the music losing itself in passion." -- Slowdive Music In his Los Angeles live solo debut, Steven Severin (founding member and longtime bassist for Siouxsie And The Banshees) comes to the Cinefamily for two successive Wednesdays of intense, compelling, moody and sensuous live scores to rare silent and experimental films! This first evening is based upon trance-inducing tracks from his 2009 solo album "Music For Silents". The centerpiece of the evening is his new score for Germaine Dulac's The Seashell and The Clergyman (1928), considered to be one of the very first surrealist films. A collaboration between Dulac and the infamous French playwright Antonin Artaud (who was reportedly infuriated by the final product), the film tells of an amorous priest, and the object of his desire whom he never can grasp. Severin's sparkling piano lines, played backwards and forwards, collide headfirst with subtle synthwork to shattering effect. STUNT ROCK (from IMDB) Australian stuntman Grant Page goes to Los Angeles to work on a television series. He uses his spare time to lend his expertise to rock band Sorcery, whose act features duels between the King of the Wizards and the Prince of Darkness, with his cousin playing the Prince. Page helps the duo develop pyrotechnic magic tricks for their shows, and also finds himself in a budding romance with a magazine writer as he recounts to her his own exploits as a stuntman and daredevil as well as various stunts by other greats. Dir. Brian Trenchard-Smith, 1978, 86 mins. SULLIVAN'S TRAVELS Preston Sturges wrote and directed this classic tale of a Hollywood director who is fed up with creating fluff and decides to find out what is really happening in America. To research a "serious" film he disguises himself as a bum and goes on the road. Along the way, Joel McCrea (as director John L. Sullivan) meets Veronica Lake, William Demarest, Porter Hall, Eric Blore and Franklin Pangborn. Still relevant, profound, and highly entertaining. The serious film Sullivan longs to make--O Brother, Where Art Thou--provided the title for the 2000 feature by the Coen Brothers. Preston Sturges---USA---1942---91 mins. 10 Dudley Moore is suffering a mid-life crises that he feels can be solved by a romantic interlude with Bo Derek. Julie Andrews, as the mature relationship in Moore's life, is not amused. The movie that made Ravel's Bolero a hit record. With Robert Webber, Brian Dennehy, Sam Jones and Dee Wallace. Blake Edwards---USA---1979---121 mins. THERE'S ALWAYS VANILLA (from IMDB) Chris Bradley is a young man who returns to his home city of Pittsburgh after several years of drifting and working odd jobs around the country since his discharge from the U.S. Army. Rejecting moving back in with his father and not wanting to return to the family business of manufacturing baby food, Chris meets and shacks up with Lynn, an older woman who works as a model in local TV commercials, and who becomes his 'sugar mama' -- supporting him financially and emotionally, which begins to put a strain on the affair. Dir. George A. Romero, 1971, 93 mins. THE THREE GODFATHERS, 1948, Warner Bros., 106 min. Dir. John Ford. John Wayne, Pedro Armendariz and Harry Carey, Jr. are bandits who find redemption in the form of an orphan placed in their care. Director John Ford delicately balances sentiment, humor and action as the men flee from sheriff Ward Bond and look after their young charge. A loose retelling of the story of the "Three Wise Men" in an American western setting. To Have and Have Not 1945/b&w/101 min. | Scr: Jules Furthman, William Faulkner; dir: Howard Hawks; w/ Humphrey Bogart, Walter Brennan, Lauren Bacall. A skipper-for-hire's romance with a beautiful drifter is complicated by his growing involvement with the French resistance. VOILA LA LIBERTÉ (Itt A Szabadsagi) (1991, Hungary) Directed by Péter Vajda Péter Vajda’s ironic, dark comedy illustrates a common story from the period after the opening of Hungary’s border with Austria. A man sets out for Vienna (newly possible since the collapse of the Iron Curtain), with friends, seeking to launder black-market currency and buy luxury items for re-sale in Hungary. Joining a human tide of Hungarians on similar missions, the sojourners meet with misadventure at every step, returning home enlightened, to say the very least! Screenplay: Péter Vajda, András Salamon. Cinematographer: Sándor Kardos. Editor: Teri Losonci. Cast: Péter Andorai, Evdokija Germanova, Sándor Fabri. Presented in Hungarian dialogue with English subtitles. 35mm, 92 min. WE’RE NO ANGELS, 1955, Paramount, 106 min. Dir. Michael Curtiz. Just before Christmas, three convicts (Humphrey Bogart, Aldo Ray, Peter Ustinov) flee from Devil’s Island and head to a small coastal town in France to steal some money and continue their escape. When they befriend the proprietors of the store they set out to rob, however, everything changes. Also features Joan Bennett, Basil Rathbone and Leo G. Carroll. [16mm IB Technicolor Print] WHITE RIBBON (DAS WEISSE BAND - EINE DEUTSCHE KINDERGESCHICHTE), 2009, Sony Pictures Classics, 144 min. Dir. Michael Haneke. In a village in Protestant northern Germany on the eve of World War I, a series of mysterious crimes sets off a firestorm of gossip and suspicion and exposes local secrets. As trust erodes among the townspeople, it becomes harder and harder to determine who is behind the strange incidents. In German with English subtitles. Winner of the Palme d’Or at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival. Youth in Revolt A huge hit at both the Toronto International Film Festival and LA's AFI Fest, Youth in Revolt is a coming-of-age comedy that puts a fresh and outrageous stamp on a tale of adolescent obsession and rebellion. Starring Michael Cera (also of the Oscar-winning film Juno and Superbad) and based on the acclaimed novel by C. D. Payne, Youth in Revolt is the story of Nick Twisp–a unique, but affable teen with a taste for the finer things in life like Sinatra and Fellini–who falls hopelessly in love with the beautiful, free-spirited Sheeni Saunders (Portia Doubleday) while on a family vacation. In person discussion with the film's star Michael Cera and director Miguel Arteta following the screening. (2009, 90 min., Dir: Miguel Arteta)