It’s Thanksgiving week and while the programming at the Cinematheque may be light due to the holiday, it’s jam packed with classic titles and big-screen spectacles worth taking a break from the festivities and Black Friday shopping for.
THE EGYPTIAN – 6712 Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90028
Friday, November 23rd, 7:30pm
THE NEW WORLD (2005, New Line Cinema; Directed by: Terence Malick)
Even with a limited output of films Terence Malick has distinguished himself as a thoughtful, poetic, artist of filmmaker, one who can capture the most poignant of moments with a camera even if it’s just a character walking through a wheat field. Malick’s movies – few and far between – are cinematic events and THE NEW WORLD is one of his best. Love them or hate them (and I dare you to try and hate them), you cannot deny that there is artistry on display in every frame
Based on the founding of Jamestown and the story of Pocahontas, words cannot really describe this movie which must be seen. I couldn’t do it justice here if I tried, so I won’t.
The film stars Colin Ferrell and Christian Bale and the score by James Horner is some of his best work.
Saturday, November 24th, 7:30pm
GONE WITH THE WIND (1939, MGM; Directed by: Victor Fleming)
1939 is often referred to as the year the stars aligned and the greatest output of movies in the history of cinema occurred and this is the granddaddy of them all. GONE WITH THE WIND has everything you want in a Hollywood epic – it’s based on a best-selling novel, the casting of Scarlet O’Hara was an event onto itself (and I can’t think of anyone else in the role except Vivian Leigh), it has great set pieces like the burning of Atlanta, Clark Gable is the personification of Rhett Butler, the running time nears the 4 hour mark and it features some of the most iconic moments and lines in the history of cinema. Does “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn” ring a bell?
This screening is a beautifully restored digital print.
With Steven Spielberg’s LINCOLN now in theaters, this screening of the Civil War epic seems well timed for a nice double feature (if you have the time).
Sunday, November 25th, 7:30pm
With a Hitch: New, 70mm, 3-D & TV Hitchcock!
VERTIGO (1958, Paramount via Universal; Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock)
VERTIGO is hands down my favorite Hitchcock film and it sits firmly on my list of top 5 films of all time.
James Stewart may have had that aww shucks honest American boy thing going for him, but if you look at his output of films the best titles are the ones where he is more than slightly messed up like with the films he did with Anthony Mann like THE NAKED SPUR, or HARVEY or this one. Here he plays a retired San Francisco cop that becomes obsessed with Kim Novak in that special way that only Hitchcock can pull off. Let’s face it, if you’re going to be obsessed with someone it might as well be Kim Novak, and in this movie she is nothing short of stunning and oozing sexuality. I’d like to think that Paul Verhoeven used this movie as an inspiration when he made his own Bay Area sexual thriller, BASIC INSTINCT.
When I first viewed VERTIGO as a teen I loved it but totally missed the intense sexual obsession going on in the subtext of the story and the characters. It’s a movie that I find something new to appreciate every single time I revisit it.
This film also features my favorite score by frequent Hitchcock collaborator Bernard Herrmann.
Like I do when I visit most cities, I once went to San Francisco and did a tour of my favorite movie locations and VERTIGO was at the top of my list. There is a great Making of VERTIGO book that lists those locations, and it’s a film tour that I highly recommend. Better than say A VIEW TO A KILL.
Presented in 70mm.
THE AERO – 1328 Montana Avenue, Santa Monica, CA 90403
Friday, November 24th, 7:30pm
SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN (1952, MGM; Directed by: Gene Kelly & Stanley Donen)
I can’t think of a musical that is more beloved than this one (ok so maybe THE SOUND OF MUSIC but whatever). Gene Kelly dancing to the title song is one of the most memorable moments in Cinema history and the Donald O’Connor number MAKE ‘EM LAUGH is beyond outstanding. So many great songs and moments, impossible not to sit through or walk out of without a smile on your face.
A perfect Hollywood classic to complement the Thanksgiving holiday.
Sunday, November 25th, 4:00pm
THE WIZARD OF OZ (1939, MGM; Directed by: Victor Fleming)
It’s all about Classic and memorable movies this week with this other classic from the epic year of 1939 (see GONE WITH THE WIND above). Gorgeous on the big screen, and great for the whole family, Dorothy, The Scarecrow, Cowardly Lion, Tin Man and Toto take a trip down the yellow brick road to see the Wizard.
Great timing with Disney’s OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL directed by Sam Raimi coming in March of 2013.
Sunday, November 25th, 7:30pm
LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962, Columbia; Directed by: David Lean)
If you haven’t seen LAWRENCE OF ARABIA on the big screen, then you haven’t seen LAWRENCE OF ARABIA.
David Lean fills every inch of the screen with cinematic wonder. All around, it’s what the movies were made for – an epic story told in wide vistas with every department – production design, cinematography, acting, music, etc. – at the top of their game. It should be no surprise that this won 7 Academy Awards including Best Picture.
My parents told me they went to see this at the drive in when it first came out and dosed off in the middle. I am checking to see if I was adopted.