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Around Town: True crime, reel comedy, cowboys, aliens, rock docs and more

July 21, 2011 |  5:30 am


Crime takes over the Los Angeles County Museum of Art's Bing Theatre this weekend with an eclectic roster of favorites beginning Thursday with the 1970 drama "The Honeymoon Killers," about the famed Lonely Hearts Killers Raymond Fernandez (Tony LoBianco) and Martha Beck (Shirley Stoler). Humphrey Bogart gives one of his most complex performances in Nicholas Ray's acclaimed 1950 film noir, "In a Lonely Place," screening Friday along with Robert Altman's 1973 version of Raymond Chandler's "The Long Goodbye" with Elliott Gould as gumshoe Philip Marlowe. Saturday's early evening screening is Luis Bunuel's surreal 1962 film, "The Exterminating Angel," with David Lynch's offbeat 2001 mystery thriller, "Mulholland Drive," screening later in the evening.

LACMA's Saturday monster movie matinees continue with the 1959's "Journey to the Center of the Earth," with James Mason and Pat Boone; the Tuesday matinee at LACMA features MGM's all-star 1933 comedy "Dinner At Eight," directed by George Cukor.  http://www.lacma.org

Two comedies starring Steve Martin at his wild and crazy best -- 1979's "The Jerk" and 1986's "Little Shop of Horrors" -- screen Thursday at the American Cinematheque's Aero Theatre in Santa Monica. The laughs continue Friday evening with a series of shorts starring the great silent comedians Laurel & Hardy, Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd.

Oscar-winning screenwriter Robert Towne makes a guest appearance Saturday at the Aero with the screening of the seminal 1974 film noir "Chinatown," and the 1990 sequel, "The Two Jakes." Sunday's offering at the Aero is a real rarity, the 1957 crime drama, "The Vintage," directed by Jeffrey Hayden and starring John Kerr, Theodore Bikel and Mel Ferrer. Hayden, Kerr and Bikel, schedule permitting, are set to appear.

Jon Favreau's sci-fi western, "Cowboy's and Aliens," gets a sneak preview screening Monday evening at the Aero as a fundraiser for the Cinematheque. Favreau will be in attendance. http://www.americancinematheque.

The Don't Knock the Rock festival continues Thursday at Cinefamily's Silent Movie Theatre with "Hit So Hard: The Life and Near Death of Patty Schemel," a documentary on the troubled life of the Hole drummer. Following the screening is a Q&A with director P. David Ebersole, producer Todd Hughes and Schemel. Set for Saturday is the 20th anniversary screening of the indie rock documentary, "The Year Punk Broke." The Cinefamily presents two foreign film classics on Sunday: Ingmar Bergman's influential 1957 drama "Wild Strawberries" and Luis Bunuel's 1974 film, "The Phantom of Liberty." http://www.cinefamily.org

The Summer Classic Anime Film Series begins Thursday with vintage anime titles from the 1920s and '30s including "Mighty Taro's Reckless Training" from 1928 and "The Tiny One Makes It Big" from 1929.  http://www.janm.org 

The UCLA Film & Television Archive is screening the 1978 disco musical, "Thank God It's Friday," Friday evening at the BIlly Wilder Theater. UCLA is also continuing its "Tracking the Cat: Robert Mitchum in the West" series Saturday evening with 1954's "River of No Return," directed by Otto Preminger and also starring Marilyn Monroe. The film's producer Stanley Rubin and film historian Alan K. Rode  will be on hand. Rode also will attend Sunday evening's screening of the rarely seen 1959 Mitchum Western, "The Wonderful Country," which also stars Julie London. UCLA returns to its disco series Wednesday with the 1980 camp fest, "Xanadu," with Olivia Newton-John, Gene Kelly and Michael Beck. http://www.cinema.ucla.edu

New Beverly Cinema welcomes the weekend with two foreign-language thrillers: 1960's "Purple Noon," directed by Rene Clement and starring Alain Delon, and Roman Polanski's first feature, 1962's "Knife in the Water," in which the filmmaker also stars. Saturday's midnight movie is 2009's "The House of the Devil." Akira Kurosawa's legendary samurai adventure, 1961's "Yojimbo," with Toshiro Minfune, screens Sunday and Monday with     's 2010 feature "13 Assassins." Terrence Malick's first two acclaimed features -- 1973 "Badlands" and 1978's "Days of Heaven" -- are set for Wednesday.  http://www.newbevcinema.com

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Summer of Silents retrospective continues Monday evening at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater with a screening of the 1925 action-adventure, "Beau Geste," with William Powell and Ronald Colman. http://www.oscars.org

-- Susan King

Photo: A scene from "In a Lonely Place." Credit: Columbia TriStar Home Video


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