Sep 5, 2013


The Egyptian Theater, Hollywood, CA

(Please note that although this event takes place at the Egyptian, it is in no way affiliated with the American Cinematheque)

7:00pm - HONDO (1954 / Batjac. Productions - Warner Bros. / 83 minutes / Directed by: John Farrow)

The World 3-D Film Expo III kicks off tomorrow (September 6) with a film that has been restored to its 3-D glory and will be presented as a RealD 3D presentation.

John Wayne stars and also produced this film about a Calvary rider who reluctantly protects widow Gerladine Page (and her son) from being forced to marry an Apache.

Shooting this in 3-D proved to be a challenge given that the director and director-of-photography were unfamiliar with the format and bulky equipment that was frequently damaged thanks to sand and high winds had to be shipped to remote desert locations.

That being said, unlike most films at the time that relied on gimmicks such as characters throwing things at the screen or other objects coming at the camera (and also the audience) director John Farrow instead uses it to isolate figures against the Mexican landscapes or to highlight the depth of the locations.

This screening marks the 60th anniversary of the film, and a rare chance to see it as it was originally intended - in 3-D.

One thing to note is keep an eye out for a brief cameo by STAR TREK's Leonard Nimoy, third Indian from the left just as John Wayne (spoiler?) is about to kill the latest chief.

Followed by...

9:30pm - HOUSE OF WAX (Warner Bros. / 90 minutes / Directed by: Andre De Toth)

The 3-D World Expo film website classifies this as a "quintessential 3-D movie" and I couldn't agree more.  Marketed as the first big commercial 3-D feature from a major studio and the first 3-D film with stereophonic sound released in a regular movie theater, the movie premiered in April of 1953.

Vincent Price plays a wax figure sculptor at an 1890's New York Museum.  When his sculptures are destroyed in a fire, Price opens a new wax museum with help from his assistant Igor (played by Charles Bronson!) that comes complete with a "Chamber of Horrors".  Of course there is more to this museum and the sculptures than meets the eye.

Unlike HONDO, HOUSE OF WAX is full of 3-D gimmicks including one (spoiler alert) where a character seems to appear from the audience and jump into the screen instead of out of it.  Even more amazing is the fact that director Andre De Toth had only the use of one eye and wore an eye patch, therefore he couldn't experience any of the 3-D effects he was creating at all.

In addition to Price and Bronson, the film also features Frank Lovejoy, Phyllis Kirk and Carolyn Jones who would later become known as Morticia Addams on THE ADDAMS FAMILY television show.

Presented in a Dual-35mm projector format, there will be a 15 minute intermission during the film.  As well the 1939 short MOTOR RHYTHM will be screened.

On top of that, 25 lucky attendees will go home with a copy of Warner Home Video's new Blu-ray 3D release of the film.