KRYSTAL actor-director William H. Macy will participate in a Q&A after the 7:30 PM screening at the Music Hall on Saturday, April 14.
National Public Radio film critic Ella Taylor will lead a Q&A after the 1:30 PM screening of SHELTER at the Ahrya Fine Arts on Sunday, April 8.
ROGERS PARK actors Christine Horn (‘American Crime Story’) and Jonny Mars (‘A Ghost Story’) and director Kyle Henry will participate in Q&A’s at the Playhouse after 7:40 PM screenings Friday-Sunday, April 6-8.
Laemmle Theatres and the Anniversary Classics Series present the latest in our Anniversary Classics Abroad program, a 50th anniversary screening of Gillo Pontecorvo’s memorable and still timely political drama, THE BATTLE OF ALGIERS.
The film was an Oscar nominee for best foreign language film of 1966, but it was not released in the United States until 1968, when it received additional nominations for best director and for best original screenplay by Pontecorvo and Franco Solinas. The film was considered so inflammatory that it was not shown in France until 1971.
The picture, filmed in black-and-white to approximate the look of a newsreel, dramatizes Algeria’s war of independence against France. It focuses on the years from 1954 to 1957, when the National Liberation Front began to organize in the Casbah of Algiers to carry out terrorist attacks on civilians as well as the French army. This led to a fierce and brutal counter-insurgency by the French, which meant the battles dragged on for years.
To insure authenticity, Pontecorvo cast the film mainly with non-professional actors recruited in Algeria. The film’s one professional actor, Jean Martin, gave a vivid performance as the complex, intelligent French officer who understands the grievances of the Algerians even as he fights ruthlessly to defeat them. The film’s urgency was heightened by the score of Ennio Morricone.
The film’s influence extended well beyond the cinema. It became a sort of handbook of revolutionary techniques that was studied by many radical groups over the years. Yet in 2003, after the invasion of Iraq, the Pentagon also screened the movie in order to better understand the civil war unleashed in that country.
Many prominent filmmakers–including Spike Lee, Mira Nair, Steven Soderbergh, and Oliver Stone–all testified to influence of Pontecorvo’s movie on their own work. Critic David Elliott of the San Diego Union Tribune called The Battle of Algiers “perhaps the finest political film of the 1960s.” The LA Weekly’s Ella Taylor agreed that it was “a classic of politically engaged filmmaking.”
Our 50th anniversary screening of THE BATTLE OF ALGIERS (1968) screens Wednesday, April 18 at 7pm in Encino, Pasadena, and West LA. Click here for tickets.
To provide shivers and thrills on Friday the 13th, Laemmle Theatres and the Anniversary Classics Series present a 50th anniversary screening of one of the most terrifying movies of all time, ROSEMARY’S BABY.
Ira Levin’s ingenious best-selling novel imagined a witches’ coven hiding in plain sight in contemporary Manhattan and hatching a plot to bring the Devil’s son to earth. Producer William Castle, the mastermind behind many successful B-horror movies, graduated to the A ranks with this classy production. Paramount’s head of production, Robert Evans, hired acclaimed European director Roman Polanski to make his Hollywood debut with the film.
The casting of the film was inspired. As the innocent woman at the center of the diabolical conspiracy, the filmmakers chose a relatively new face to movies, Mia Farrow, and she played the role with endearing vulnerability. The film’s success catapulted her to full-fledged stardom.
John Cassavetes took a break from his own independent productions to play Farrow’s conniving husband. The brilliance of the casting extended to the supporting players, a veritable Who’s Who of vintage Hollywood and Broadway actors, including Ruth Gordon, Sidney Blackmer, Maurice Evans, Ralph Bellamy, Patsy Kelly, and Elisha Cook Jr. Gordon won the Oscar for best supporting actress for her spot-on portrayal of a nosy neighbor with a sinister agenda. Polanski earned an Oscar nomination for his adapted screenplay.
Behind-the-scenes credits were just as impressive. Six-time Oscar nominee William Fraker (Bullitt, Heaven Can Wait) was the cinematographer, while two-time Oscar winner Richard Sylbert (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Chinatown, Dick Tracy) was the production designer. The eerie score was composed by a gifted friend of Polanski, Christopher Komeda, who died tragically at the age of 37, soon after the release of the film.
Among the stellar reviews for the film, Leonard Maltin hailed a “Classic modern-day thriller by Ira Levin, perfectly realized by writer-director Polanski.” Stephen Witty of the Newark Star-Ledger called it “one of the finest horror films ever made.” In 2014 Rosemary’s Baby was added to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress.
ROSEMARY’S BABY screens Friday, April 13 at 7:30 PM at the Ahrya Fine Arts in Beverly Hills. Click here for tickets.
THE JUDGE filmmaker Erika Cohn will participate in Q&A’s at the Monica Film Center after the 7:30 PM screenings on Friday and Saturday, April 20 and 21. West Hollywood City Council member Lindsey Horvath will lead the Q&A on Friday night. Dr. Laila A. Al-Marayati of KinderUSA will join Ms. Cohn for the Saturday Q&A.
Join Laemmle and Eat|See|Hear for April Showers at the NoHo 7 in North Hollywood. Every Thursday in April our Throwback Thursday (#TBT) series presents four films with unforgettable shower scenes. It all starts Thursday, April 5th with PSYCHO. Check out the full schedule below. For tickets and our full #TBT schedule, visit laemmle.com/tbt.
April 5: Psycho
Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, and Martin Balsam star in Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece. Format: DCP. Click here for tickets.
April 5: Weird Science
Kelly LeBrock, Anthony Michael Hall, and Ilan Mitchell-Smith in star John Hughes’s teen, sci-fi classic. Format: DCP. Click here for tickets.
April 19: Carrie
Brian DePalma’s adaptation of Stephen King’s novel stars Sissy Spacek and Piper Laurie. Format: DCP. Click here for tickets.
April 26: Starship Troopers
Paul Verhoeven’s satirical take on fascism and the military-industrial complex stars Casper Van Dien, Dina Meyer, Denise Richards, Jake Busey, and Neil Patrick Harris. Format: DCP. Click here for tickets.