Friday, November 24, 2017

LA 35mm Film Screenings Week of Nov. 24, 2017

Your weekly LA 35mm film screenings list is here! (Includes some digital screenings.)

This is just what's on my personal radar. You can browse the LA Film Calendars links on my side bar to find even more!  → → →

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Sometimes these choices are tonight, FYI, and not necessarily listed first.

Downtown Independent
On the Beach at Night Alone (2017, Hong Sang-soo)
Fri. (tonight) Nov. 24 8:00 pm
Where are today’s current auteurs, the Fellinis, Antonionis and French New Wave directors of today? They’re here, in the body of Hong Sang-soo, an amazing director. Okay there are others, but this is a big director you really should be watching if you care about art cinema anymore. My favorite film of his is The Turning Gate, also known as On the Occasion of Remembering the Turning Gate (what a great long title!), and he also directed a nice one with Isabelle Huppert, In Another Country. Lead actress Kim Min-hee won the Silver Bear at the Berlin International Film Festival this year for her performance. This is his latest and looks like it’s appearing just twice here in LA. Screw the foreign language film Oscars, this is what you should really be seeing. No idea why actual art films are shunned at Oscar time. Go see the real shit. (Presumably shot and screened digital.)

New Beverly
Prison on Fire (1987, Ringo Lam)
Victim (1999, Ringo Lam)
Tue. Nov. 28 7:30 pm/9:40 pm
I was a huge fan of the Prison on Fire films and really almost anything Chow Yun-Fat was in once I first came across him in the ’90s. Very interested to see how this film has aged. It had a sequel, Prison on Fire II (1991), not showing here. But instead we have a 1999 Ringo Lam film, Victim, starring a very awesome Hong Kong actor, Lau Ching-Wan. I can’t recall if I ever watched this movie or not. A lot of post-handover Hong Kong films just weren’t as good (the hand-over of sovereignty from the United Kingdom to China in 1997). The highly endearing lower-budget attempts to exceed Hollywood excess just weren’t there anymore and the films, perhaps unrelated to the handover, were trying to get more respectable. See Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon for more evidence. Anyway, so you’re seeing a gap bridged here, the before and after. Prime excess ’80s Hong Kong awesomeness vs. ’90s, with the same director even. Although given that this is Grindhouse night, the second film definitely shouldn’t be too respectable! See if you notice a difference. Plus Chow Yun-Fat is the most charismatic actor in a generation, the reincarnation of Cary Grant, definitely see that film!

Echo Park Film Center
Renaldo and Clara (1978, Bob Dylan)
Sat. Nov. 25 8:00 pm
Four-hour-long film directed by Bob Dylan, with some scenes written by Sam Shepard. Here it is being shown on a VHS recording of a 4-hour broadcast. Hmm, well, depends how badly you want to see this, I guess, although it is in a lovely friendly and communal atmosphere. If it’s up your alley, definitely check this unique event out.

Egyptian Theatre
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968, Stanley Kubrick) in 70mm!
Fri. (tonight) Nov. 24 7:30 pm
Sat. Nov. 25 7:30 pm
What can I tell you, this plays all the fricking time. But it was shot on 70mm and is being screened on 70mm. As opposed to seeing some 35mm film blown up to 70mm, this is the real deal, and there’s a big difference. So, if you haven’t seen it, really this is the ideal way! It has some slowness to modern audiences in certain sections by taking too much time showing off special effects that were brand-new at the time, and the closed-off behaviors of the lead astronauts may seem a bit obtuse at times, but by the end, you’ll be deep in thought contemplating the ideas it brings up on such a wondrous journey, and in the thrall of A.I.'s biggest star of them all, Hal 9000. Your only excuse not to go? If you have already seen it more than once on 70mm, otherwise, you better go.

New Beverly
West Side Story (1961, Robert Wise, Jerome Robbins)
Sat. Nov. 25 11:59 pm
A midnight screening of West Side Story?!? Methinks you misjudge your audience for this film! But it’s a great, fun film. Well worth seeing. Especially in 35mm.

Aero Theatre
Singing in the Rain (1952, Gene Kelly, Stanley Donen)
Fri. (tonight) Nov. 24 7:30 pm
Played recently, but it’s back again. Oh, darn, it’s in DCP. Well, still great! Always enjoyed seeing a musical on the big screen at the Aero.

Coming Next Week

New Beverly
The Meyerowitz Stories (2017, Noah Baumbach)
Begins Fri. Dec. 1, through Dec. 7 various showtimes
I love me some Baumbach, haven’t actually seen his recent films, but loved Kicking and Screaming (1995). This film was shot on Super 16mm Kodak (according to IMDB at least), which is a superb format that translates to 35mm extremely well as the modernization of film stocks took a leap forward about a decade or so ago (or maybe just five years ago). I’ve seen many films shot Super 16mm and blown up. The Walking Dead, on TV, is another notable example (it’s definitely 16mm, and I’m guessing Super 16). Super 16 is still 16mm, it’s just the way you expose it to favor the aspect ratio, and actually you expose a larger surface area by eliminating one side of sprockets, making the blow-up great. Okay, lot of babbling there, long story short, this should look amazing! Go help support a modern filmmaker shooting on film and projecting on film, yay!
NEW BEVERLY MAIN CALENDAR (Browse their full calendar for multiple showtimes.)

UCLA Film & TV Archive
Contra la corriente (1936, Ramón Novarro)
La virgin que forjó una patria (1942, Julio Bracho)
Sun. Dec. 3 7:00 pm
It’s a Ramón Novarro Spanish-language double feature. He was a major Hollywood silent film star (Ben-Hur [1925], Scaramouche [1924], The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse [1921]), so this is quite intriguing for fans of his. The first is a U.S. production he directed, a romantic comedy set in Los Angeles, but in Spanish! The second film is extra intriguing (to me at least) because of its historical scope, religious subject (portrays the witness to Our Lady of Guadalupe) and being billed here as a mega-production, ’cause I kind of love large-scale history films. It navigates the history of Mexico from 1531 to the nation’s fight for freedom in 1810. While this is screening in 16mm, it sounds rare, plus that would match the correct aspect ratio anyway. And the first film is 35mm.

NuArt Theatre
The Other Side of Hope (2017, Aki Kaurismäki)
Starting Fri. Dec. 1, showing all week
The new film from Aki Kaurismäki (The Man Without a Past, Le Havre, Leningrad Cowboys Go America), generally worth a look in a theater, as he is kind of a well-known “auteur.” In this one a Finnish traveling salesman and a Syrian refugee cross paths. Be prepared, though, as this director makes Wes Anderson look like he doesn’t know what deadpan even is. (Presumably shot and screened digitally.)

Phantom Lady (1944, Robert Siodmak)
Tue. Dec. 5 1:00 pm
I feel fairly sure I saw this a long time ago and it was good! While I guess a vague memory is not much to solidly recommend a film, it is 35mm, a film noir, and has a stellar cast! Franchot Tone, Ella Raines, plus character actors extraordinaire Elisha Cook Jr. and Thomas Gomez. For only $4 at this matinee screening in 35mm!

Echo Park Film Center
Il Viadante – The Wayfarer (Jean-Marie Straub, Danièle Huillet, 2001, 5 min)
The Rabbit Hunters (Pedro Costa, 2007, 23 min.)
The Amazing Transparent Man (Edgar Ulmer, 1960, 58 min.)
Fri. Dec. 1 8:00 pm
Presented by Kino Slang, here is an excellent selection of rarely screened items. Straub-Huillet films are always difficult to see, this one is just a short. I always adore Edgar Ulmer, so it’s great to see in a theater. Ulmer was the genius of bringing artistry to B-movie pictures and especially a deceptive look of high production values while operating on a woeful budget. He was a true talent. This film center is a bit like a classroom with couches, so make sure you’re up for that type of vibe. One other short is showing: The Singing Street (The Teachers of Norton Park School, Edinburgh, 1951,17 min) which sounds very interesting too. (Screening format of films not indicated.)

Arclight Hollywood
Die Hard (1988, John McTiernan)
Tue. Dec. 5 8:30 pm
Some people live to see this in a theater, so this is a pretty good opportunity. (This screening DCP.)

Egyptian Theatre
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989, Jeremiah S. Chechik)
Scrooged (1988, Richard Donner)
Fri. Dec. 1 8:00 pm
Just ’cause it’s Christmas, maybe you’ll want to see these. Could be fun!
(This screening DCP)

Arclight Hollywood
Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987, John Hughes)
Mon. Dec. 4 8:15 pm
Some people like to see this one in a theater, so this is a pretty good opportunity at the holidays. (This screening DCP.)

Arclight Pasadena/Santa Monica
Love Actually (2003, Richard Curtis)
Tue. Dec. 5 7:00 pm (Pasadena)/ 7:15 pm (Santa Monica)
What, you don’t cry during this?! Who are you!? I like British stuff, sue me. (This screening DCP.)

Arclight Sherman Oaks
Scrooged (1988, Richard Donner)
Tue. Dec. 5 7:00 pm
Also playing this week at the Egyptian (see above), here’s one more opportunity to see this in a theater. (This screening also DCP.)

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