Upcoming screenings

The two-week-plus campaign to Save Film at LACMA continues (be sure to read Time art and architecture critic Richard Lacayo’s article from yesterday), but Los Angeles’ fall film scene is beginning to promise highlights:

• “Cigarettes & Alcohol: Eight Films by Hong Sang-soo” (Sept. 11-19)
I’ve seen all of Hong’s films except for The Day a Pig Fell into the Well and his most recent two releases, which haven’t played in Los Angeles. LACMA is showing all three (Pig for free!) plus most of his other works; one of several fine examples of the kind of programming Angelenos will dearly miss if LACMA administration has its way.

“African American Film Pioneers” (Sept. 11-Oct. 31)
UCLA Film & Television Archive screens films by Oscar Micheaux and Spencer Williams, and two starring Herb Jeffries.

• “A Tribute to Chick Strand” (Sept. 13)
The Los Angeles Filmforum begins its fall season with a tribute to films by Chick Strand, who tragically passed away in July.

“Two Classics of Asian Cinema” (Sept. 25, 26)
LACMA’s 13-year veteran Ian Birnie has chosen Ozu’s swan song, An Autumn Afternoon (along with a new, 20th-anniversary print of Hou Hsiao-hsien’s A City of Sadness), for what might be his Department’s final stand-alone screening, an exquisite choice for its serene evocation of the themes of loss and letting go.

• REDCAT Film/Video Events (Sept. 29-Dec. 14)
The theater has just announced a typically stellar line-up of fall screenings, including a projection performance by Bruce McClure, experimental animation, J. Hoberman on Flaming Creatures, and films by Ulrike Ottinger, Ken Jacobs, Joost Rekvel, and more.

• “The Classic Films of Alain Resnais” (Oct. 2-17)
A major LACMA series with a major highlight: Je t’aime, je t’aime, unavailable on video or DVD, on October 10.

“Ken Jacobs in Person” (Oct. 15)
UCLA screens Jacobs’ most recent works.

• “Footsteps and Fog: British Film Noir” (Oct. 17-26)
“Though less well known, and with their own distinct sensibilities and variations, British filmmakers also made some fascinating contributions to the film noir genre.” (Of course, there are those who maintain that film noir is a style rather than a genre.)

• AFI FEST 2009 (Oct. 30-Nov. 7)
The best film festival for world cinema in Los Angeles continues this year, with a gutsy restructuring: complimentary tickets and patron passes for all screenings, and a centralized venue at Mann’s Chinese Theatre (with late screenings at AFM in Santa Monica). I can’t wait for its line-up announcement.

• As a final note, I’d like to highlight the fact that one of my favorite films from last year–Take Out–is getting a DVD release on September 1st by Kino Video.

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