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Around town: Crowd-pleasing films take over L.A.'s revival houses this weekend

June 30, 2011 |  6:00 am


If fireworks aren't your thing, don't fret -- there are plenty of crowd-pleasing films screening over the holiday weekend at Los Angeles' revival movie houses.

The American Cinematheque's Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood gets the weekend off to a rocking start Thursday with "Pink Floyd The Wall," Alan Parker's 1982 interpretation of the famed rock group's landmark concept album. The surreality continues Friday with 70-milliliter screenings of the 1982's "Tron" and James Cameron's 1991 sci-fi thriller "Terminator 2: Judgment Day."

Steven Spielberg's seminal 1975 summer blockbuster, "Jaws," with Richard Dreyfuss, Robert Shaw and Roy Scheider, headlines the Egyptian's double bill Saturday evening paired with the fishy fun of Joe Dante's 1978 camp thriller "Piranha," penned by John Sayles. Jonathan Demme's 1984 concert film featuring acclaimed rock group Talking Heads, "Stop Making Sense," screens Sunday evening along with 1986's "True Stories," written, directed and featuring Talking Heads frontman David Byrne.

The Cinematheque's Aero Theatre continues its "Centennial Tribute to Composer Bernard Herrmann" Thursday evening with two thrillers that feature his memorable scores: Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 "Psycho" and John Brahm's 1945 shocker "Hangover Square" with Laird Cregar. Far less scary is Friday's double bill: 1975's "Monty Python and the Holy Grail" and 1983's "Monty Python's The Meaning of Life."

Two well-received rock documentaries screen Saturday at the Aero: Martin Scorsese's 1978 "The Last Waltz" and 1968's "Monterey Pop." Director Peter H. Hunt will be on hand Sunday evening at the Aero for a screening of the uncut, restored print of the 1972 musical "1776" with most of its Broadway cast reprising their roles including William Daniels, Howard Da Silva, Ken Howard and Blythe Danner. Americancinematheque.com

Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre ushers in the holiday with its second annual "Everything Is Festival," which opens Thursday and continues through Monday. The festival is described as a five-day event featuring "discovery, weirdness and just plain fun."

On Tuesday, Cinefamily welcomes animation historian Jerry Beck for "Heavyweights of Cartoon Comedy: Tex Avery vs. Jay Ward," which will feature animated shorts by these two titans of cartoons. Far more serious is Wednesday evening's offering, Lillian Gish as Hester Prynne in MGM's lavish 1926 adaptation of Nathanial Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter." Cinefamily.org

The New Beverly Cinema concludes its three-day engagement of 1973's documentary "Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars" and 1998's "Velvet Goldmine" on Thursday evening. Julianne Moore stars in Todd Haynes 1995 indie, "Safe" on Friday and Saturday. The director's 2007 feature "I'm Not There" also screens. The Saturday midnight show is 1986's "Night of the Creeps," written and directed by Fred Dekker.

On Monday, the theater features a free advance screening of "Attack the Block," the audience award winner at the L.A. Film Festival. Writer/actors Tom Lennon and Ben Garant ("Reno: 911!"), authors of the new book "Writing Movies for Fun And Profit," will present two films Wednesday evening dealing with the Hollywood screenwriter: the Coen brothers' 1991 "Barton Fink" and Billy Wilder's 1950 masterwork, "Sunset Boulevard." Newbevcinema.com

Universal CityWalk's "Big Free Outdoor Movie" Thursday evening is 2008's "Mamma Mia!," with Meryl Streep and Colin Firth. Citywalkhollywood.com.

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is having a monster mash starting Saturday with a weekly series of movie classics that inspired filmmaker Tim Burton. First up is 1958's fantasy "The 7th Voyage of Sinbad," featuring the stop-motion special effects of Ray Harryhausen. Lacma.org

Cinespia presents 1969's "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," featuring the great Paul Newman and Robert Redford, Saturday evening at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. And what better place to see the 1984 comedy hit "Ghostbusters"? The blockbuster starring Bill Murray screens Sunday evening at the cemetery. Cinespia.org

-- Susan King

Photo: "Terminator 2: Judgment Day." Credit: Artisan Home Entertainment

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