UPDATE SEPTEMBER 15 11:49 a.m.
Here’s a couple of quick notes on some fun and unusual stuff happening in Los Angeles that you might want to take advantage of.
Bicyclists may want to avail themselves of the vast array of short films that are screening this weekend at the Downtown Independent Theater as part of the Los Angeles leg of the Bicycle Film Festival. You won’t see Breaking Away or Bicycle Thieves or, perhaps thankfully, American Flyers or Quicksilver at this festival. Instead, festival goers, many of whom bike to the event, of course, will be treated to an international menu of short films all centered on the wide, wonderful world of pedaling. You can see trailers for the films on tap here. The festival runs through Sunday, September 11, and tickets are still available.
There are rumors that the UCLA Film and Television Archive will soon be beginning a series of classic films screening at the Million Dollar Theater on Broadway, downtown Los Angeles.
UPDATE: Here's the complete word on the Million Dollar Theater series from UCLA on their Web site. Some of the double bills are really juicy including a Cronenberg two-fer of The Fly and Videodrome on October 12, The French Connection doubled with To Live and Die in L.A. on November 9 and Lawrence of Arabia on November 16.
Also check out this piece on a Last Remaining Seats screening written by the archive director Jan-Christopher Horak for a glimpse inside this spectacular movie palace. (Thanks to Robert Fiore for the heads-up.)
Yet another Grindhouse-style anthology tribute to the worst of our collective taste in horror and sci-fi is coming your way via low-budget directors Adam Green, Joe Lynch, Adam Rifkin, and Tim Sullivan. It’s called Chillerama, and it unspools on the last night of operation of the Kaufman Drive-In (a nod to Troma founder Lloyd Kaufman, this reference will give you a hint as to where the directors’ sympathies lie), where a foursome of fearsome fright flicks (whew!) will hopefully be distributing chills and laughs in equal measure. Green directs and writes the no-doubt measured and tasteful The Diary of Anne Frankenstein; Lynch bears responsibility for Zom B Movie; Rifkin is credited with bringing the seminal Wadzilla to life; and Sullivan’s gay-centric satire I Was a Teenage Were-Bear is the poppable cherry on top. (The trailer, which highlights all four segments, can be seen here.) Chillerama is rolling out in a few cities and choice locations before making its debut on VOD and DVD, but with the exception of screenings in Los Angeles and Chicago it hasn’t been booked into any actual drive-ins. The Hollywood Forever Cemetery will be home to the movie’s premiere on 9/15, and Chicago’s Midway Drive-in will feature Chillerama as part of a dusk-to-dawn horrorathon on the 17th. All other shows are listed here. Maybe there’s still hope for a screening at our beloved Mission Tiki Drive-in sometime soon!
Finally, a real treat for fans of Steven Spielberg’s most reviled movie, and especially for those who revere its superb John Williams score—the Cinefamily will be hosting a rare theatrical screening of 1941 in celebration of the release, for the very first time, of Williams’ entire score for the movie, on a 2-CD package from La-La Land Records. The CDs will be available at the screening, and the Cinefamily promises very special guests which have yet to be announced. The screening happens Sunday, September 25 at 7:30 p.m. If you’re in Los Angeles and come out, you’ll definitely see me there rejoicing in the splendorous excess of one of my favorite movies. Wild Bill Kelso couldn’t keep me away!