American Cinematheque at the Egyptian Theatre Presents...
Making Movie History for 80 Years!

Click to Print Page 1 or Page 2 or Full Text of Oct./Nov. Schedule!
Series compiled by:  Dennis Bartok, Gwen Deglise & Chris D.

 

 

Special Thanks to: Marilee Womack/WARNER BROS. CLASSICS; John Kirk, Irene Ramos & Latanya Taylor/MGM-UA.

 

 

 

 

Tickets available 30 days in advance. Tickets are $9 general admission unless noted otherwise.
Sold out programs will be indicated here if sold out 24 hours in advance of screening date.
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The American Cinematheque is a non-profit 501 (C) (3) organization.
The Film Programs of the American Cinematheque are presented at the magnificently renovated, historic 1922 Grauman's Hollywood Egyptian Theatre. Located at 6712 Hollywood Boulevard.
Photo Credit: Randall Michelson. Detail of Egyptian Theatre Ceiling.

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<<< November 11-13, 2004 >>>

A Wonderful Legacy: Treasures from MGM and United Artists

 

Stars may rise and fall, executives come and go, but the studios remain forever – at least that’s the accepted wisdom in town. For this reason, the impending sale of fabled Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (which includes the equally celebrated United Artists among its divisions) has spawned much soul-searching in Hollywood. MGM was born in 1924 out of the merger of Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures and Louis B. Mayer Pictures. Under the control of Mayer and associate Irving Thalberg, MGM quickly grew to become arguably the most glamorous of the Golden Age Hollywood studios, with such stars as Clark Gable, Greta Garbo, the Barrymores, Jean Harlow, Spencer Tracy, Judy Garland and Elizabeth Taylor on its roster, and filmmakers including Erich Von Stroheim, Victor Fleming, King Vidor, Fritz Lang, Ernst Lubitsch and Gregory La Cava. The list of MGM classics is legendary: BEN-HUR, SINGIN' IN THE RAIN, GRAND HOTEL, DINNER AT EIGHT, MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY, 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY and the crown jewel, GONE WITH THE WIND (sadly unavailable for this series).

United Artists came from an even more prestigious pedigree, formed in 1919 by four giants of the industry, Charlie Chaplin, D.W. Griffith, Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks. During the 1920s and into the 30s, U.A. prospered by releasing its founders’ films along with outside productions from Samuel Goldwyn and Alexander Korda among others. After falling on hard times in the 1940s, when it served mainly as a clearing house for low-budget films produced by others, U.A. returned in the 1950s under the leadership of Arthur Krim and Robert Benjamin. The next two decades were the studio’s creative heyday, producing and/or distributing such films as SOME LIKE IT HOT, THE APARTMENT, TOM JONES, SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS, THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER, MARTY, the Pink Panther films, Sergio Leone’s Spaghetti Westerns, and most famous of all, the James Bond 007 franchise. The company continued flying high into the 1970s with such critical and commercial successes as ROCKY and ANNIE HALL, but stumbled badly in the wake of HEAVEN’S GATE in 1980, and was sold by corporate owner Transamerica to MGM the following year.

In reality, the MGM and United Artists of today are far different companies from their predecesors. (The library of classic MGM titles has in fact been owned by Warner Bros. for a number of years now.) So while their future may be uncertain, one thing is not: the glorious legacy of cinematic treasures produced by both studios and the immensely talented artists who worked there.

 

Thursday, November 11 - 7:00 PM

THE WIZARD OF OZ, 1939, MGM (Warner Bros.), 101 min. Dir. Victor Fleming. Judy Garland is Dorothy in this sublime, candy-colored adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s children’s favorite and one of the most beloved film classics of all time. Take a surreal stroll down the yellow brick road with Dorothy as she encounters the Tin Man (Jack Haley), the Scarecrow (Ray Bolger), the Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr), Glinda, the Good Witch (Billie Burke) and the Wicked Witch Of The West (Margaret Hamilton). With the amazing Frank Morgan doing multiple duties in a variety of roles, including the Wizard. Song "Over The Rainbow" was an Oscar winner. Watch out for the Flying Monkeys!

 

Thursday, November 11 - 9:15 PM

THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE UGLY, 1966, MGM/UA, 179 min. Dir. Sergio Leone. From the opening whistle-and-whipcrack theme, to the final images of a vast cemetery stretching almost to infinity, THE GOOD, THE BAD & THE UGLY is surely one of the bloodiest, funniest and most wickedly entertaining portraits of human corruption ever made. Leone’s surreal masterpiece of the American West during the last days of the Civil War follows a trio of equally violent and unrepentant gunslingers (Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach and Lee van Cleef) who engage in a jawdropping series of double- and triple-crosses to get their hands on a fortune in stolen Confederate gold. Newly restored by 18 minutes to it’s original, longer European running-time!

 

Friday, November 12 - 7:00 PM

AN AMERICAN IN PARIS, 1951, MGM (Warner Bros.), 115 min. Director Vincente Minnellis most popular musical and 1951’s Oscar Best Picture winner features irrepressible Gene Kelly as a struggling-to-make-it painter in Paris, caught between the romantic aspirations of a wealthy patron (Nina Foch) and his true love, the young Leslie Caron. Kelly sings, dances and cracks wise with his smart-aleck buddy, pianist Oscar Levant while trying to decide what to do. Also received Academy Awards for Best Screenplay, Best Score, Best Cinematography and Best Art Direction.

 

Friday, November 12 - 9:15 PM

Double Feature:

SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS, 1957, MGM/UA, 96 min. Tony Curtis gives his greatest performance as cutthroat press agent Sidney Falco, willing to sell his soul to syndicated columnist Burt Lancaster for a few lines of copy, in director Alexander MacKendrick’s dark, glittering gem of a movie -- one of the most frightening and seductive films of the 1950’s. Brilliantly scripted by Clifford Odets and Ernest Lehman, with stunning, mood-drenched b&w photography by the legendary James Wong Howe. Match me, Sidney …

TOM JONES, 1963, MGM/UA, 129 min. Director Tony Richardson’s suberbly funny adaptation of Henry Fielding’s bawdy 18th century classic. Then-newcomer, Albert Finney as foundling Tom, embarks on a Rabelaisian romp through the rustic English countryside, trying to make his way in the world but distracted by the delights of all manner of womanhood, both couth and uncouth, represented by the lovely and sexy Susannah York, Joan Greenwood and Diane Cilento. With a magnificently inebriated Hugh Griffith. Winner of numerous Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Screenplay.

 

Saturday, November 13 - 4:00 PM

BEN-HUR, 1959, MGM (Warner Bros.), 212 min. Director William Wyler’s grand epic adapted from the novel by Lew Wallace tells the timeless saga of two boyhood comrades, Charlton Heston and Stephen Boyd, who grow up to be fierce enemies in the time of Christ. The grueling chariot race is worth the price of admission alone. Winner of 11 Oscars including Best Picture. Originally premiered at the Egyptian Theatre!

 

Saturday, November 13 - 8:15 PM

Double Feature:

GOLDFINGER, 1964, MGM/UA, 111 min. Dir. Guy Hamilton. "Do you expect me to talk, Goldfinger?" "No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die …" cackles homicidal villain Auric Goldfinger (Gert Frobe), as he prepares to re-arrange 007’s personal equipment with a laser beam, in what is widely considered to be the best of the classic Sean Connery Bond pictures. Co-starring the saucy Honor Blackman as Bond’s nemesis-turned-partner Pussy Galore, with Shirley Eaton as the gold-painted girl, Harold Sakata as mute assassin Oddjob, and the venerable home office team of Bernard Lee, Lois Maxwell and Desmond Llewelyn. Terrific production design by Ken Adam, and cinematography by Ted Moore (FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE, THUNDERBALL).

2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, 1968, MGM (Warner Bros.), 139 min. Dir. Stanley Kubrick. "I’m sorry, Dave, I’m afraid I can’t do that," murmurs supercomputer HAL 9000 as it attempts to eliminate bothersome human astronaut Keir Dullea in master filmmaker Stanley Kubrick’s literally mind-blowing meditation on the inherent dangers (and wonders) of technology, the limitless vistas of space, and the future of the human race itself. Based on a 1948 short story "The Sentinel" by Arthur C. Clarke, "2001" was reconceived by Kubrick himself, working with author Clarke to create the ultimate Journey into the Unknown. But if you think you’ve seen "2001," think again – until recently, the film was only available in a 35 mm. version that reduced Kubrick’s legendary visuals (and the spectacular 6-track stereo sound) to a pale shadow of their true glory. Before his death, Kubrick oversaw a painstaking, frame-by-frame restoration of the film in 70 mm. – resulting in a version that looks and sounds as good (if not better) than the original 1968 release!!