a highly-opinionated selection of things happening around town, and sometimes out of town. this month's page here.
mon. dec. 1 black sea FREE @ melnitz movies @ ucla james bridges post life FREE (RSVP) @ echo tue. dec. 2 king kong (1933) 1 PM @ lacma wed. dec. 3 cleo from 5 to 7 8 PM, angel olsen (solo performance) @ silent movie theater jonathan richman @ bootleg thu. dec. 4 the adventures of ford fairlane @ egyptian the people vs. larry flynt, auto focus @ aero ill met by moonlight FREE 7 PM @ csun cinematheque working girls (1931) FREE 5 PM @ the crank @ ucla james bridges colleen green (11:30), death lens (10:00) FREE @ harvard & stone fri. dec. 5 hoop dreams @ ucla film archive an evening with robert downey sr 8 PM @ silent movie theater that guy dick miller @ egyptian ed wood, man on the moon @ aero sunrise, the last laugh @ lacma sat. dec. 6 hearst metrotone news 100th anniversary @ ucla film archive gremlins, gremlins 2, tales from the crypt: demon knight @ egyptian the golden bed 6 PM, male and female @ lacma the ear FREE 4 PM @ getty oratorio for prague 7 PM, a report on the party and its guests FREE @ getty sun. dec. 7 ladonna harris: indian 101 7 PM, a good day to die @ ucla film archive downey and the midnight movie 7 PM @ silent movie theater putney swope (hosted by louis ck) 2 PM @ cinefamily @ ace hotel a bucket of blood, war of the satellites @ egyptian the bitter tea of general yen, lost horizon @ aero the joke FREE 2 PM @ getty daisies FREE 4 PM @ getty warhol's empire FREE 12 PM @ moca grand mon. dec. 8 sneakers FREE (RSVP) 7 PM @ usc stark pxl this festival FREE 7:00 9:00 PM @ unurban the dawn of a thousand suns 8:30 PM @ redcat tue. dec. 9 keoma FREE (RSVP) 3 PM @ usc broccoli wed. dec. 10 lost & found film club: mystery movie 10:30 PM @ silent movie theater bouquet, big search, white dove @ satellite thu. dec. 11 memento, insomnia @ egyptian allah-las, tashaki miyaki @ el rey fri. dec. 12 interstellar (70mm) @ egyptian mr. deeds goes to town, mr. smith goes to washington @ aero die hard MIDNIGHT @ nuart sat. dec. 13 this may be the last time @ ucla film archive chafed elbows 5:30 PM, no more excuses @ silent movie theater the life of brian, erik the viking @ aero the adventures of robin hood (1938) 6 PM, mildred pierce @ lacma sun. dec. 14 pound 9 PM @ silent movie theater monty python's the meaning of life, monty python and the holy grail @ egyptian we are the spirit guides and we are watching you @ filmforum @ spielberg @ egyptian cosmonauts, corners, burnt ones @ echo mon. dec. 15 prism pipe (TBA) 8 PM @ pehrspace wed. dec. 17 animation breakdown: women in cgi 10 PM @ silent movie theater auntie mame @ egyptian selma 8 PM @ the contenders @ hammer thu. dec. 18 why don't you play in hell? @ silent movie theater nightcrawler @ the contenders @ hammer fri. dec. 19 why don't you play in hell? @ silent movie theater silent night deadly night, christmas evil @ egyptian it's a wonderful life @ aero the shop around the corner, the doll @ lacma gremlins MIDNIGHT @ nuart levitation room, drinking flowers, mystic braves @ echo loved ones @ footsies sat. dec. 20 why don't you play in hell? 7 PM @ silent movie theater post life (11:30) @ pehrspace it's a wonderful life @ egyptian notorious 6 PM, vertigo @ lacma sun. dec. 21 why don't you play in hell? @ silent movie theater the apartment @ egyptian it's a wonderful life @ aero mon. dec. 22 why don't you play in hell? 10:30 PM @ silent movie theater tue. dec. 23 it's a wonderful life @ silent movie theater why don't you play in hell? 10:30 PM @ silent movie theater wed. dec. 24 it's a wonderful life 4:00 7:00 9:50 PM @ silent movie theater thu. dec. 25 it's a wonderful life 6:00 9:00 PM @ silent movie theater fri. dec. 26 greaser's palace 7:15 PM @ silent movie theater why don't you play in hell? 9:30 PM @ silent movie theater vertigo (70mm) @ egyptian blade runner (theatrical cut) MIDNIGHT @ nuart sat. dec. 27 greaser's palace 4:30 7:00 PM @ silent movie theater why don't you play in hell? 9:15 PM @ silent movie theater lawrence of arabia (70mm) @ egyptian the greatest cartoons ever 2:00 7:00 PM @ alex theatre sun. dec. 28 my man godfrey @ greg proops film club @ silent movie theater the poseidon adventure (1972) @ egyptian experimental films @ 7 dudley cinema @ beyond baroque fri. jan. 2 the astrologer MIDNIGHT @ silent movie theater blade runner (director's cut) MIDNIGHT @ nuart tue. jan. 6 heathers @ ham & eggs wed. jan. 7 lost & found film club: toon town 10:30 PM @ silent movie theater thu. jan. 8 boyhood @ the contenders @ hammer the molochs, drinking flowers, tracy bryant @ harvard & stone sat. jan. 10 heathers @ warehouse show TBA tue. jan. 13 a girl walks home alone at night @ the contenders @ hammer thu. jan. 15 chain and the gang @ satellite fri. jan. 16 budos band @ regent theater sun. jan. 18 subversive cinema FREE 7 PM @ beyond baroque fri. jan. 23 the shining MIDNIGHT @ nuart endless bummer (early show), heathers @ jewel's catch one fri. feb. 6 the big lebowski MIDNIGHT @ nuart mon. feb. 9 folk music films FREE 6 PM @ documental @ beyond baroque fri. feb. 27 six organs of admittance @ echo fri. may 1 sleater-kinney @ palladium WHAT IT IS: THE ASTROLOGER “You’re not an astrologer... YOU’RE AN ASSHOLE!” — Arthyr Chadbourne, in The Astrologer Our compatriots at Austin, TX’s American Genre Film Archive bring us a lost masterwork of such feverish potency that it immediately evokes memories of Top 10 Cinefamily Bizarro Moments Of All-Time like Dangerous Men, Lost In The Desert and After Last Season. The brainchild of writer/director/star/supposed celebrity astrologer Craig Denney, 1975’s The Astrologer is a self-aggrandizing yet completely dislocating auto-biopic journey into “What makes a world-famous zodiac peddler tick?” Natch, it involves humble beginnings as a carnival huckster, diamond smuggling, African jail, Indiana Jones-level daring-do, carousing in Valley dive bars with haggard-as-hell barflies, an avant-garde film-within-the-film (titled The Astrologer), slo-mo food fights and more Moody Blues than you can handle. No situation is too nutz for Denney to flash his irascible smirk at — and no single scene will ever prepare you for what the next will be. A shattering missive from the outermost limits of cinematic sanity — and the most delirious film find of 2014, discovered amongst the impossible hodgepodge of over one thousand donated 35mm prints from a single humungous batch. Dir. Craig Denney, 1975, 35mm, 77 min. BLACK SEA “Though a contemporary story, it plays out like an old fashioned dramatic thriller, and ... sustains itself thanks to atmosphere and performances rather than special effects and grandstanding sequences.” Mark Adams, Screen International Kevin Macdonald, director of LAST KING OF SCOTLAND, brings us BLACK SEA, starring Jude Law, a film about a band of laid off Scottish submariners who team up with a motley crew of Russian sailors to find a sunken U Boat filled with gold bullion at the bottom of the Black Sea. An old, rusted submarine is taken out of a shipyard for their use. A dry eared American sycophant is appointed by the secret financier to watch over them, just adding to their troubles. As cross cultural tensions flair between Scots and Russians, their deep-water mission teeters in a flimsy balance. Followed by Q&A w/ director Kevin MacDonald. A BUCKET OF BLOOD 1959, Park Circus/MGM, 66 min, USA, Dir: Roger Corman After LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS, this ranks as probably director Roger Corman’s most famous early effort, with a wonderful Dick Miller as mentally challenged Walter Paisley, a waiter at a beatnik café jealous of the artistic types who make up the clientele. When Walter accidentally kills his landlady’s cat, on a whim he covers it in clay. Passing it off at the cafe as a genuine sculpture, he is proclaimed an artistic genius. But he soon realizes he will have to produce more “works of art” if he is to hold onto his cherished new reputation. Soon Walter resorts to aping Vincent Price in HOUSE OF WAX, killing people and covering them in clay to serve as his newest creations. With more appearances by Corman regulars Barboura Morris, Antony Carbone and Ed Nelson. And look for future game show host Bert Convy as a doomed narc! Discussion between films with director Roger Corman and actor Dick Miller. CHAFED ELBOWS A double shot of Downey, Sr.’s anarchic NYC counterculture gems. In Chafed Elbows, hapless Walter Dinsmore undergoes his annual November breakdown at the World’s Fair, has a love affair with his mother, recollects his hysterectomy operation, impersonates a cop, is sold as a piece of living art, goes to heaven and becomes a rock star — but not necessarily in that order. Downey, Sr. show this ground-zero satire of his Greenwich Village bohemian scene with a still 35mm camera (a la La Jetee), and had the film processed at Walgreens. Both films presented from archival 35mm prints, courtesy of Anthology Film Archives!Dir. Robert Downey Sr., 1966, 35mm, 63 min. Daisies Directed by Vera Chytilova (1966, 76 minutes, English subtitles, 35mm) One of the New Wave's most anarchic films, Daisies is also considered a touchstone of feminist film; these traits made the Communist government sense danger and it was immediately banned. By far the most dazzlingly experimental film of this period, the surrealism achieved by Daisies' collage and optical effects is matched in absurdity only by the mischevious and satirical behavior of its two irreverent heroines. Presented with an introduction by Los Angeles artist Jennifer West. THE DAWN OF A THOUSAND SUNS “Exceedingly personal, drawn from memory, experience, and chance encounters.” – Cinema Scope Since first drawing attention for her stunning performance in Claire Denis’ 35 Shots of Rum (2008), Diop has emerged as an adventurous filmmaker who mines the edges between drama and creative documentary. The daughter of Senegalese musician Wasis Diop and niece of legendary filmmaker Djibril Diop Mambéty, Diop broke out with the Tiger Award-winning short Atlantiques (2010, 15 min.), which recalls the life-threatening attempts by Africans to reach Europe by flimsy pirogues. The program also includes Mille Soleils (2013, 45 min.), winner of top prizes at FID Marseille and the Ann Arbor Film Festival. An homage to Mambéty’s Touki Bouki (1973), Mille Soleils follows that film’s main actor, Magaye Niang, 40 years later as he searches for Myriam—his co-star and great love at the time. In person: Mati Diop THE DOLL Long before becoming a major name in Hollywood, Berliner Lubitsch made his name in Germany with ambitious, comedic epics and rollicking fantasies like this. An adaptation of an A.E. Willner operetta (itself based on an E.T.A. Hoffmann story), The Doll opens with a young Lubitsch arranging a miniature landscape that comes magically to life with real actors. Hermann Thimig plays the ironically-named Lancelot, a spoiled, weakling heir who flees to a monastery to avoid an arranged marriage. Word gets out that Lancelot will inherit a sizable fortune on the occasion of his wedding, so he and the monks connive to wed him to a lifelike mechanical doll and split the rewards. But when the doll breaks down before Lancelot takes possession of it, its flesh-and-blood muse (Ossi Oswalda) decides to take its place as a goof. Silent Lubitsch is visually dazzling and silent German Lubitsch is a feat of total imagination, as shown in this lighthearted farce sparkling with surrealist touches, boldly artificial sets and devil-may-care charm. Featuring live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. 1919, 64 minutes, black and white, DCP | Directed by Ernst Lubitsch; written by Hanns Kräly and Lubitsch, based on the operetta by A.E. Willner and the story by E.T.A. Hoffmann; with Max Kronert, Hermann Thimig, Victor Janson, Marga Köhler, Ossi Oswalda, Gerhard Ritterbrand. DOWNEY AND THE MIDNIGHT MOVIE For lovers of all things Downey, this is the night of deep cuts. The Friends Of Cinefamily have struck a brand-new 35mm print of Downey’s “acid western” Greaser’s Palace — a classic of the ‘70s midnight movie circuit (named by the Coen Brothers as one of their favorite films of all-time) that’s been out of theatrical circulation for decades. Following is a celebration of the music Robert Downey made with Charlie Cuva and Jack Nitzsche, a reunion of his cast-‘n-crew extended family”, and a rare screening of his never-on-DVD (heck, never-even-on-VHS) Pound. Greaser’s Palace Dir. Robert Downey, Sr., 1972, 35mm, 91 min. Pound Dir. Robert Downey, Sr., 1970, digital presentation, 92 min. The Ear Directed by Karel Kachyna (1970, 94 minutes, English subtitles) Karel Kachyna was one of the few directors who stayed in Czechoslovakia after the implementation of the Warsaw Pact. Following The Ear (which was banned immediately), he was banned make anything controversial. The Ear was finally released in 1989, and is a fascinating criticism of the contemporary totalitarian regime, filmed at a moment when the country was in the grip of the Soviet Union. This is a directly confrontational film, without parody, and it is one of the most compelling political films of all time. AN EVENING WITH ROBERT DOWNEY, SR. Join us for an intimate, career-spanning conversation between father and son, touring the early life and work of Robert Downey, Sr. The evening features never-before-seen rare clips, ephemera and other surprises, along with screenings of some of Downey’s best work. The night includes a beautiful 35mm restoration by Anthology Film Archives of his breakthrough underground hit Chafed Elbows, and a rare screening of Two Tons of Turquoise to Taos Tonight, Robert Downey, Jr.’s personal favorite of his father’s work. Chafed Elbows Dir. Robert Downey, Sr., 1966, 35mm, 63 min. (print courtesy of Anthology Film Archives with the support of The Film Foundation) Two Tons of Turquoise To Taos Tonight Dir. Robert Downey, Sr., 1975, digital presentation, 56 min. THE GOLDEN BED Cecil B. DeMille – a master of screen spectacles whom Georges Sadoul once hailed as “Hollywood personified” – directed this lavish pre-Code gem about “the morals and marriages of today.” Tradition and modernity, the upper crust and working stiffs, are sharply contrasted as DeMille tracks the fates of Southern heiress Flora Lee and candy magnate Admah. One will stop at nothing for glamour and fortune; the other will do anything for his beloved. Clare West’s elaborate Roaring Twenties costumes (with uncredited help from a young Edith Head) befit the film’s outlandish production design and salacious thrills, all of which combine in the climactic “Candy Ball,” in which every conceivable item on screen, including several costumes, is made of the sugary confection... and then devoured. Featuring live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. Restored by the George Eastman House with support from The Film Foundation. Print courtesy of The Film Foundation Conservation Collection at the Academy Film Archive. 1925, 90 minutes, black and white, silent, 35mm | Directed by Cecil B. DeMille; scenario by Jeanie Macpherson, based on the short story “Tomorrow’s Bread” by Wallace Irwin; with Lillian Rich, Vera Reynolds, Henry Walthall, Rod La Rocque, Theodore Kosloff, Warner Baxter, Robert Cain. A Good Day to Die (2011) Directed by David Mueller, Lynn Salt. David Mueller and Lynn Salt’s stirring documentary chronicles the American Indian Movement (AIM) through a parallel biography of founder Dennis Banks, who started the organization in 1968. A statesman who rose to leadership following U.S. military service and subsequent battles with alcohol and imprisonment, Banks led AIM in historic occupations of Federal facilities and key municipalities, protesting unjust U.S. policies and allowing many young Native Americans a first opportunity to feel pride in their heritage. Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. Producer: David Mueller, Lynn Salt (Choctaw). Cinematographer: David Mueller. Editor: Robert McFalls. Cast: Larry Anderson, Dennis Banks, Tashina Banks, Zinzii Banks, Clude Bellecourt. Digital video, color, 90 min. GREASER'S PALACE The Friends Of Cinefamily have struck a brand-new 35mm print of Downey’s “acid western” Greaser’s Palace — a classic of the ‘70s midnight movie circuit (named by the Coen Brothers as one of their favorite films of all-time) that’s been out of theatrical circulation for decades. Dir. Robert Downey, Sr., 1972, 35mm, 91 min. Ill Met by Moonlight (1957), 102 mins. Ill Met by Moonlight is set during World War II on the island of Crete and tells the story of two British officers whose job it is to kidnap a Nazi general. Also known as Night Ambush in the U.S., Powell and Pressburger’s superb war film is among their final collaborations. The Joke Directed by Jaromil Jires (1969, 81 minutes, English subtitles) Considered one of the last great films of the Czech New Wave and made after the Soviet invasion, the plot concerns a young man who is expelled from the Communist Party because of a joke and his subsequent need, 20 years later, for revenge against the good friend who betrayed him. KEOMA Franco Nero (Django, The Fifth Cord) is KEOMA, a gunfighter weary of killing as a way of life. But when he returns to his troubled childhood home, Keoma is caught in a savage battle between innocent settlers, sadistic bandits and his vengeful half-brothers. In a wasteland gone mad with rage and pain, can one man massacre his way to redemption? KEOMA is an extraordinary combination of potent symbolism, powerful performances and relentless violence, brilliantly directed by Enzo G. Castellari (Street Law, The Big Racket). Woody Strode (Once Upon a Time in the West), William Berger (Django Strikes Again) and Olga Karlatos (Zombie) co-star in this one-of-a-kind classic that fans and critics consider to be one of the greatest 'Spaghetti Westerns' of all time. Running time: 101 minutes. Beginning with a Q&A with writer-director Enzo G. Castellari, moderated by Cinematographer Jon Fauer, ASC LADONNA HARRIS: INDIAN 101 Directed by Julianna Brannum (Comanche). This inspiring biography traces the remarkable career of Comanche activist LaDonna Harris, whose life in public service began as the wife of U.S. Senator Fred Harris. A tribute to Harris’ lifelong commitment to political and social activism, her achievements as a voice for Native American advancement, and her ongoing efforts to guide a new generation of indigenous leaders. Naru Mui Films. Producer: Julianna Brannum. Cinematographer: Dustinn Craig, Nate Foll. Editor: Sam Wainwright Douglas, Karen Skloss. Cast: LaDonna Harris. Digital video, color, 63 min. The Last Laugh The film that brought Murnau to Hollywood, The Last Laugh is one of the most visually ambitious motion pictures in silent cinema, telling its emotional and ironic tale with only one title card. Emil Jannings, who would soon after become the first Best Actor Oscar winner, plays the doorman for a grand hotel. His post and his ornate uniform are his pride and joy, and when he's demoted to washroom attendant due to his advancing age, his life goes on a downward spiral. The dazzling camerawork plumbs the depths of his journey from pomposity to despair and lends cinematic verve to this modern tragedy. Featuring live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. 1924, 90 minutes, black and white, 35mm | Directed by F.W. Murnau; written by Carl Mayer; with Emil Jannings, Maly Delschaft, Max Hiller, Emilie Kurz, Hans Unterkircher, Olaf Storm. LOST & FOUND FILM CLUB: TOON TOWN Craving cartoons? Anxious for animation? We’ve been saving up a stockpile of celluloid silliness and stop-motion mayhem guaranteed to inspire. From totally mod mid-century offerings by major studios like Disney & Paramount, to hand-painted experiments, crude claymation and cockroach-infested Canadian jukeboxes — this shorts mix will rearrange your mind, one frame at a time. Animated G.I. Joes, plasticine pervs and wisecracking numerals await. We’ll even pull out some rarely screened Fleischer films from the dawn of the art form. Best of all, the entire collection of shorts will be projected from original 16mm & 35mm prints. Painted movie pictures of the ordinary kind? Forget it, film freaks, it’s Toon Town. Male and female When the yacht of an aristocratic family is wrecked on a South Seas island, their butler turns from servant to master. Cecil B. DeMille’s delirious film version of James M. Barrie’s popular play The Admirable Crichton turned a stage comedy into a scintillating melodrama, complete with a Biblical fantasy sequence. Thomas Meighan plays Crichton, the dutiful manservant who pines for the eldest daughter (Gloria Swanson) of his employer (Theodore Roberts). Clare West had been hired by DeMille the year before Male and Female to oversee costumes for Famous Players-Lasky. Her dazzling costumes for the film include Swanson’s decadent upper-class wear as well as the equally eccentric clothes for the ancient Babylon sequence, which foreshadows the filmmaker’s classic religious spectacles like Samson and Delilah and The Ten Commandments. The N.Y. Times, in 1919, raved: "lavishly staged, skillfully directed... it is a remarkable movie." Featuring live musical accompaniment by Michael Mortilla. 1919, 116 minutes, black and white, silent, 35mm | Directed by Cecil B. DeMille; scenario by Jeanie Macpherson, based on the play The Admirable Crichton by James M. Barrie; with Thomas Meighan, Theodore Roberts, Raymond Hatton, Robert Cain, Gloria Swanson, Lila Lee, Bebe Daniels. MY MAN GODFREY Greg Proops (one of the most mind-warpingly quick-draw improv comics on earth) records his monthly Film Club podcast live — and then it’s time for one of the most screwy of all screwball comedies from the Thirties. Greg sez: “In this year of discord we celebrate the holidays with an anti-rich people movie. My Man Godfrey is one picture that can justly be described as delightful. The debonair William Powell is homeless (that alone was a big laugh, for he also played the distinctly upscale detective The Thin Man) when two rich, shallow sisters (the fabulous Carole Lombard and the feisty Gail Patrick) on a scavenger hunt convince him to come uptown and be gaped at by callous sophisticates for five bucks. When he does, he’s disgusted by how mindless and insipid the rich are; the family is a living trainwreck of abuse and eccentricities. Horses in the living room, a live-in gigolo and unswerving vapidity. This movie anticipates the nation-state of Kardashia, and pays off big time. Let’s have a fun revolution. Forget the guillotines. Brandish some wit. Join us, you will, loves.” Dir. Gregory La Cava, 1936, 35mm, 93 min. NO MORE EXCUSES No More Excuses is the rowdiest of Downey, Sr.’s early films (which is saying a lot), and interweaves five scenarios into one raucous amalgamation, including a dazed Civil War soldier mysterious awakening in modern NYC, the director of the Society for Indecency To Naked Animals speaking from the heart of his crusade to clothe all of God’s creatures, and Sr. visiting the seriously swinging singles scene that is the original T.G.I. Friday’s on the Upper East Side. This one’s unhinged, downright funny and art brut to the max. Both films presented from archival 35mm prints, courtesy of Anthology Film Archives! Dir. Robert Downey Sr., 1968, 35mm, 62 min. Oratorio For Prague Directed by Jan Nemec (1968, 26 minutes, English subtitles, DigiBeta) Along with Koudelka's photographs, this short film by Nemec is one of the few documents of the Soviet Invasion in August, 1968. Originally planning to film the joyous freedom engendered by Slovak reformer Alexander Dubcek, Nemec was in Prague as the first Soviet tanks rolled in to "help" a fellow socialist state. POUND Downey’s barely-released 1970 follow-up to Putney Swope is performed like a conceptual theater piece (a chagrined United Artists thought Downey was producing an animated feature!), as human actors play dogs with nothing externally signifying their dogginess — no makeup, no costumes — except what they have to say and think. Trapped in an animal shelter as they await the “doggie gas chamber”, they see flashbacks of their former lives, watch TV and yammer at each other. Downey’s fast-and-loose dialogue, zany musical numbers and broad, wild performances from his large ensemble (including a five-year-old Downey, Jr.) keep Pound consistently unpredictable and and sufficiently zazzed. Dir. Robert Downey Sr., 1970, DigiBeta, 92 min. A Report on the Party and Its Guests Directed by Jan Nemec (1966, 70 minutes, English subtitles) Banned immediately in 1966, released briefly in 1968, then banned again for 20 years, Nemec's parody of oppression and conformity seems to mix the photojournalism of Cartier-Bresson (one of Koudelka's influences) with the surrealism of Buñuel, into his own contemporary Czech experience. THAT GUY DICK MILLER 2014, Autumn Rose Productions, 91 min, USA, Dir: Elijah Drenner Dick Miller came to Hollywood in the mid-1950s as an aspiring writer but soon became one of the movies’ busiest character actors, with more than 175 film roles and more than 2,000 television appearances to his credit. This funny and candid documentary tells Miller’s story in his own words, along with those of such colleagues as Robert Forster, Mary Woronov, Joe Dante and Roger Corman. Augmented by animation and hundreds of rare clips, this upbeat look at the irreverent performer shows just why “that guy’s in everything!” Discussion following with actor Dick Miller, director Elijah Drenner and producer Lainie Miller. This May Be the Last Time (2014) Directed by Sterlin Harjo. Who knew that the Muscogee Creek and Seminole nations developed their own traditional hymns akin to Negro spirituals? Narrated first by the director, Sterlin Harjo’s personal documentary weaves together the surprising and tragic history of these devotional songs with the mysterious disappearance of his grandfather in 1962. Producer: Sterlin Harjo, Matt Leach, Christina D. King. Cinematographer: Sterlin Harjo, Matt Leach, Shane Brown. Editor: Matt Leach. Cast: Sterlin Harjo. HDCam, color, 90 min. Preceded by: A Bentwood Box (1985) Directed by Sandy Osawa, Yasu Osawa. Upstream Productions. Producer: Sandy Osawa, Yasu Osawa. DVCam, color, 5 min. WAR OF THE SATELLITES 1958, New Horizons Picture Corp., 72 min, USA, Dir: Roger Corman Satellites and sputniks were all the rage in late 1950s headlines. When the first satellites launched, Corman promised his backers he could get a film with the word “satellite” in the title into theaters within 60 days. Given the go-ahead, he rapidly conjured this imaginative, lightning-paced and ultra-low-budget thriller about an alien spaceship intent on blowing up every Earth satellite entering the interstellar ether. Dick Miller and Susan Cabot are the heroic couple doing battle with the space villains, most notably incarnated in the takeover of pioneering scientist Dr. Van Ponder (the magnificent Richard Devon who played Satan in Corman’s THE UNDEAD). 16mm. Discussion between films with director Roger Corman and actor Dick Miller. We Are the Spirit Guides and We Are Watching You: Videos by Duke and Battersby Duke and Battersby in person! Los Angeles Filmforum is thrilled to welcome Emily Vey Duke and Cooper Battersby to town for their first Los Angeles program, providing an eagerly awaited and long-overdue opportunity to experience their singular and uncategorizable work, with the artists in person! Complex, revelatory, and truly entertaining explorations of empathy, guilt, shame, caring, and humanity are teased brilliantly from an unconventional mixing of elements, including diaristic video, found footage, homespun songsmithery, faux-naive animation, and nature photography. “Often working with the disconnects between human and animal – and their urge to reconcile the sterile mechanics of our world versus the intuitive viscerality we keep buried within – their dark sense of humour has yielded a slate of bizarre taxidermies, installations, videos, and sculpture, all tinged with a gutsy, mystical longing that’s sweet, sinister, hilarious, and disturbing all at once.” – Murray Whyte, Toronto Star WHY DON'T YOU PLAY IN HELL? “Mankind’s greatest achievement.” — David Erhlich, Film.com The once-in-a-generation filmmaker behind Love Exposure, Cold Fish and Guilty of Romance is back with yet another endlessly irreverent, wild and hilariously visceral big-screen thrill that’s almost too much for words. Even in a cinematic landscape where every second or third Japanese film is totally crazy-pants, Sion Sono’s body of work is unparalleled in its ability to seamlessly blend a melee of outré ideas with such a solidly humanist core. His latest to hit Stateside, Why Don’t You Play In Hell? is a love letter to the yakuza movies of yore, to the local Cinefamily-esque “film clubs” of his youth and to 35mm film itself. There’s a war going on, but that won’t stop the inexperienced, wannabe crew The Fuck Bombers from making the ultimate action epic of their dreams. Their wish comes true in the form of a yakuza boss who, on the eve of his revenge against a deadly rival, bankrolls the Bombers’ masterpiece: a real, live blood-soaked gangster battle to the death — captured on 35mm! Infused with his trademark excess and outrageousness, this is Sion Sono with his talent and unique vision totally unleashed. Dir. Sion Sono, 2013, DCP, 130 min. WORKING GIRLS Arriving in the big city, two wide-eyed sisters from Indiana, naïve Mae (Dorothy Hall) and streetwise June (Judith Wood), bed down at the Rolfe House for Homeless Girls and immediately turn their attentions to finding better working – and living – arrangements. Taking up a job as a stenographer for scientist Joseph von Schraeder (Paul Lukas), Mae finds love blooms; however, an ill-advised night spent with a Harvard playboy (Charles “Buddy” Rogers) threatens to derail everything. Can the conniving June steer things back on course – and maybe find her own man in the process? “[B]oast[s] the adroit hand of director Dorothy Arzner, as well as the writing talents of Zoe Akins.” –TV Guide “[A] sassy, accurate representation of working class femininity [that] undermine[s] the classical Hollywood romance.” –Bérénice Reynaud, Directed by Dorothy Arzner. 1931. Total Running Time: 77 min. Format: 35mm