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American Cinematheque at the Aero Theatre Presents...
Movies on the Big Screen Since 1940!
1328 Montana Avenue at 14th Street in Santa Monica


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Click to print Page 1 or Page 2 or Full Text of a Oct. Calendar!
Compiled: LAFCA programming committee: Scott Foundas, Robert Koehler, Wade Major and Ray Greene.

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SOLD OUT SCREENINGS: There will be a waiting line for Sold Out screenings. Tickets often become available at the door the night of an event.

Sold out programs will be indicated here if sold out 24 hours in advance of screening date.

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Tickets are $10 general admission unless noted otherwise.
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The American Cinematheque is a non-profit 501 (C) (3) organization.
The Film Programs of the American Cinematheque are presented at the newly re-opened and renovated Aero Theatre at 1328 Montana Avenue in Santa Monica and at the magnificently renovated, historic 1922 Grauman's Hollywood Egyptian Theatre. Located at 6712 Hollywood Boulevard.
Photo Credit: Barry Gerber. Aero Theatre (c) 2004.

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<< October 19 - 24, 2007 >>>

LAFCA's The Films That Got Away

 


Discuss this series with other film fans on:
http://www.myspace.com/americancinematheque

 

This is an Aero Theatre Exclusive!

 

 

Every year, there are dozens of superb American and foreign films that fail to be shown commercially in the United States. Ironically, it's usually precisely because these movies are unique and special that distributors avoid the challenge of trying to sell them. Fear not, cinema fans. The L.A. Film Critics Association, in association with the American Cinematheque, has polled its membership and programmed a festival completely comprised of their picks of "films that got away" -- but which shouldn't have. Bold, visionary, sexy, shocking and indescribable. These are the titles the best critics in town pass among themselves like rare jewels. Well, the treasure box is now open to all, with overlooked gems plus in-person discussions with some giants of independent film and other indescribably rare treats!!


Friday, October 19 - 7:30 PM
Los Angeles Premiere!

MARY, 2005, Wild Bunch, 83 min. Dir. Abel Ferrara. Winner of the Grand Jury Prize (and three other awards) at the 2005 Venice Film Festival, Abel Ferrara’s provocative drama stars Matthew Modine as a flamboyant actor-director — part Ferrara alter-ego, part Mel Gibson surrogate — who has just wrapped production on a controversial Biblical drama, THIS IS MY BLOOD, starring himself as Jesus and leading European actress Marie Palesi (Juliette Binoche) as Mary Magdalene. But when it comes time to leave the film’s Italian location (Matera, where Passolini shot THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO ST. MATTHEW and Gibson filmed THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST), Marie finds she cannot break the hold her latest character has placed on her. So she sets off on a spiritual quest to the Holy Land, while her embattled director returns to New York and a firestorm of pre-release controversy — much of it generated by an outspoken TV talk-show host (Forest Whitaker) who is devoting a week-long series of programs to the historical truth of Jesus’ life. In one of his most ambitious films to date, Ferrara uses the dual prism of filmmaking and media culture to explore his own faith and artistic identity, and the ways in which scripture has been revised and reinvented throughout history as those in power have seen fit. An outstanding cast that also includes Heather Graham and LA VIE EN ROSE star Marion Cotillard is joined by real-life religious scholars Jean-Yves Leloup, Amos Luzzatto and Elaine Pagels in this densely layered, deeply compelling movie about the tangled intersection of life, cinema and religion. NOT ON DVD Discussion following with actor Matthew Modine and editor Langdon Page.

 

Saturday, October 20 - 7:30 PM

Chris Marker Night!
Los Angeles Premiere!
THE CASE OF THE GRINNING CAT, 2004, First Run/Icarus, 58 min. Dir. Chris Marker. Not to be confuseed with Marker’s previous 1970’s effort, GRIN WITHOUT A CAT. In his newest film, French cinema-essayist Chris Marker reflects on French and international politics, art and culture at the start of the new millennium. In November 2001, he became intrigued by the sudden appearance of grinning yellow cat paintings on Paris buildings, Metro walls and other public surfaces, and began to document the mysterious materializations of this charming feline. This engaging record of Marker’s cinematic peregrinations throughout the city chronicles political incidents, a variety of protests (about Iraq, Tibet, immigration), elections, and celebrity scandals. The personalized commentary running throughout the film offers the simultaneously learned and witty reflections on both the contemporary and historical implications of these varied events and personalities. Eventually, the creator of the grinning cats is revealed to be an art collective known as Mr. Cat, whose members are shown painting a massive representation of their mascot on the plaza before the Pompidou Center. Marker concludes with thoughts on the vital importance of such expressions of art and imagination in our public lives, echoing the May ‘68 slogan that "La poésie est dans la rue" ("Poetry is in the street"). "Lively, engaged, and provocative!" -- J. Hoberman, The Village Voice NOT ON DVD

"The Sixth Side Of The Pentagon," 1967, First Run/ Icarus, 27 min. Dirs. Chris Marker & François Reichenbach. "If the five sides of the pentagon appear impregnable, attack the sixth side." -- Zen proverb. On October 21, 1967, over 100,000 protestors gathered in Washington, D.C., for the Mobilization to End the War in Vietnam. It was the largest protest gathering yet, and it brought together a wide cross-section of liberals, radicals, hippies, and Yippies. Che Guevara had been killed in Bolivia only two weeks previously, and, for many, it was the transition from simply marching against the war, to taking direct action to try to stop the ‘American war machine.’ Norman Mailer wrote about the events in Armies of the Night. French filmmaker Chris Marker, leading a team of filmmakers, was also there, and made "The Sixth Side of the Pentagon." From young men burning their draft cards, to the Yippies chanting "Out, demons, out!" while trying to levitate the Pentagon, to thousands of protestors rushing the steps of the Pentagon itself and some actually getting into the building, "The Sixth Side Of The Pentagon," by contemporaneously putting us in the midst of the action yet combining the experience with a wry and reflective commentary, is a remarkable time capsule and reminder of events from forty years ago, 1967—the turning point of opposition to a long and unpopular war. "Eloquent… impressive… Chris Marker is among that rare breed of men in whom the currents of political engagement and searching human honesty reinforce and enrich rather than antagonize each other." -- Larry Loewinger, Film Quarterly.

"The Embassy", 1975, First Run/Icarus, 22 min. Dir. Chris Marker. One of Chris Marker’s few fiction films, "The Embassy" shows political dissidents seeking refuge in a foreign embassy after a military coup d’état in an unidentified country. Over the next few days, more and more people fleeing the military assault—teachers, students, intellectuals, artists, and politicians -- arrive at the embassy. An anonymous cameraman records the tense situation with his Super-8 camera, and provides a voice-over commentary, as the Ambassador and his wife arrange to house and feed the growing group, who monitor radio reports of the alarming political developments -- including thousands of political prisoners detained in a stadium, and reports of executions -- and glimpse activities on the streets outside. The refuge-seekers accommodate themselves to the makeshift living arrangements, find ways to pass the time, and engage in often heated political debates. At the end of a week, with a guarantee of safe conduct into exile, the refugees leave the embassy and a final panning shot of the city skyline conveys the film’s politically pointed, surprise ending.

 

Sunday, October 21 - 7:30 PM
Los Angeles Premiere!

ELSEWHERE, 2001, 240 min. Dir. Nikolaus Geyrhalter. An unprecedented experience and a magnificent display of the visual and aural power of one of the era’s most interesting and incisive non-fiction filmmakers, Nikolaus Geyrhalter’s unbelievably ambitious work is constructed in twelve, twenty-minute sections located in twelve of the world’s most remote regions—each filmed under sometimes ultra-extreme conditions during each month of 2000. Geyrhalter, best known in the U.S. for OUR DAILY BREAD, appears to observe at an optically dispassionate distance, but underlying this landmark film is exquisitely subtle compassion for tribal peoples (stretching from Nigeria to Lapland, Sardinia to Greenland, Micronesia to British Columbia) who live with one foot in ancient cultural traditions and another in our new century. NOT ON DVD

 

 

Wednesday, October 24 - 7:30 PM
Los Angeles Premiere!

COME AND GO (VA E VEM), 2003, Mandragoa Filmes; 179 min. Defying good taste, conventional filmmaking and even the limitations of his then-weakening body, the late Portuguese film master Joao Cesar Monteiro completed his final masterpiece shortly before he died two months before its 2003 Cannes premiere. As widower-dandy-faux-bookish-intellectual Joao Vuvu (a variation on Monteiro’s longtime on-screen alter ego, Joao de Deus), the crafty and wiry Monteiro dominates his own film, an old man with loads of time on his hands whose every encounter with a new woman allows more wild, yet deadpan, provocations on sex, religion, race and finally, a filmmaker’s own central tool—his own eyes (actually, just one of them), staring back at us in one of the movies’ most indelible and strangest final shots. There’s nothing else like it—not even in this highly original filmmaker’s body of work, which stubbornly remains barely known in this country. "COME AND GO marks a blazing end to the 30-year career of Portugal's most provocative filmmaker-actor…A master of surreal visual comedy, as an actor Monteiro gives one the feeling of watching a great performer at his deadpan best." -- Deborah Young, Variety. NOT ON DVD