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

Click to print Page 1 or Page 2 or Full Text of an November Calendar!

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Series Compiled by: Chris D.
Special Thanks to: Paul Ginsburg/UNIVERSAL; Germaine Simiens/CONCORDE-NEW HORIZONS; Caitlin Robertson/20TH CENTURY FOX; Neil Moryson/FIRST LOOK PICTURES.


SOLD OUT SCREENINGS: There will be a waiting line for Sold Out screenings. Tickets often become available at the door the night of an event.

Sold out programs will be indicated here if sold out 24 hours in advance of screening date.



All guests are subject to availability. The Cinematheque will offer a refund due to guest cancellations only IF the refund transaction is complete PRIOR to the start of the show.

Tickets available 30 days in advance. Tickets are $9 general admission unless noted otherwise.
SCHEDULE (by series)
SCHEDULE (by date)
24-Hour Information: 323.466.FILM
Contact Us
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 17 - 19, 2006 >>>

Three Nights With Director Monte Hellman


Discuss this series with other film fans on:


This is an Egyptian Theatre Exclusive!


A true American original, Monte Hellman has directed – over the course of one of the strangest and most elliptical careers in Hollywood – a small, brilliantly consistent group of movies. The cryptic gallery of drifters, drag racers, conflicted soldiers and mute cockfighters in Hellman’s films all seem to inhabit the same desolate landscape: a world where, as Hellman puts it, "…love has been rejected, but people still have a nostalgia for it." His films have a beautifully stark atmosphere to them -- part serene vision, part apocalypse -- and his sensibilities seem filtered through a cultured European worldview. But his characters are down to earth humans with recognizable quirks and viscerally sensitive emotions. These attributes are not affectations, but honest outcroppings of Hellman’s inner nature. From TWO LANE BLACKTOP and COCKFIGHTER to THE SHOOTING and BACK DOOR TO HELL, he often comes across as the unholy offspring of Michelangelo Antonioni and Sam Fuller. Like a character from one of his own movies, Hellman has gathered elusive fragments of myth around him: the long years between projects; his partnerships with Jack Nicholson (four films) and Warren Oates (three films); a producing credit on RESERVOIR DOGS – all add to an outsider reputation that Hellman says is misleading. "I’m the eternal innocent babe in the woods who always thinks he’s making a commercial Hollywood movie," he insists – if so, it’s one more irony that Hellman the hired gun has, like bounty-hunter Oates in THE SHOOTING, gone weirdly, wonderfully astray.




Friday, November 17 – 7:30 PM

Monte Hellman/Warren Oates Double Feature:

Brand New 35mm Print! TWO LANE BLACKTOP, 1971, Universal, 101 min. Dir. Monte Hellman. Two motorheads in a supercharged Chevy (singer James Taylor and Beach Boy Dennis Wilson) take on Warren Oates and his monstrous Pontiac GTO in a cross-country race. Haunted by the vast, open spaces of the Midwest and an addictive sense of speed, TWO-LANE BLACKTOP is the essential American road movie – Hellman calls it "the last movie of the Sixties." One of the amazing things about the film is it’s Bressonian simplicity in following its protagonists – here the universe itself is stripped-down-for-maximum-velocity to an astonishingly bleak and lonely microcosm – the hard, spartan interiors of Taylor’s and Oates’ cars. With Laurie Bird.

COCKFIGHTER, 1974, Concorde-New Horizons, 83 min. Monte Hellman, adapting the novel by Charles Willeford (MIAMI BLUES), follows stubborn loner, Warren Oates, who had been disqualified from receiving a Cockfighter of the Year award due to his boisterous, intoxicated behavior during a match. Oates takes a vow of silence until he wins again, and we follow him on his lonely odyssey, trying to regain his lost sense of worth as he partners up with fast-talking gambler, Omar (Richard B. Shull) and plans for the future with his sweetheart (Patricia Pearcy). Filmed on Georgia locations (cockfighting was reportedly still legal there then) by Nestor Almendros, director Hellman creates another austere slice-of-life road saga, remaining true to the seedy milieu but bringing a compassion and insight to the characters indicative of his agile and elegant strengths as a filmmaker. With an exceptional cast that also includes Harry Dean Stanton, Millie Perkins, Troy Donahue, Laurie Bird, Ed Begley, Jr., Steve Railsback and a cameo by writer, Charles Willeford. Discussion in between films with director Monte Hellman.



Saturday, November 18 – 7:30 PM

Monte Hellman/Jack Nicholson Double Feature:

THE SHOOTING, 1966, First Look Pictures, 82 min. A western like no other, Monte Hellman’s existential masterpiece follows a wary bounty hunter (Warren Oates) hired to escort a snarling little vixen (Millie Perkins) across the desert – searching for what? Along the way, they’re shadowed by demonic gunfighter, Jack Nicholson (pure malevolence), as they all ride closer to some hellish reckoning. With former TV western star, Will Hutchins. "Bizarre, hallucinatory and absolutely hypnotic" – Tom Milne.

RIDE IN THE WHIRLWIND, 1966, First Look Pictures, 83 min. Monte Hellman’s flipside (and originally released as a co-feature) to THE SHOOTING: two cowhands (Cameron Mitchell and Jack Nicholson, who also scripted) find themselves mistaken for bandits and hunted to extinction. Nicholson plays it totally straight here – his naturalistic dialogue was based on Old West diaries. With Rupert Crosse and Harry Dean Stanton and cinematography by Nestor Almendros. Discussion in between films with director Monte Hellman.



Sunday, November 19 – 6:30 PM

Monte Hellman/Jack Nicholson Double Feature:

Brand New 35mm Print! BACK DOOR TO HELL, 1964, 20th Century Fox, 69 min. Three G.I.’s – conscientious Lt. Craig (played by 1950’s crooner, Jimmie Rodgers), sardonically philosophical Burnett (Jack Nicholson) and tough skeptic, Jersey (John Hackett) blunder their way into a crossfire of paranoia and anti-American sentiment when they encounter a crew of Filipino guerillas after a secret landing at Luzon during WWII. Monte Hellman’s vision of combat is all-too-timely and refreshingly free of the jingoistic rhetoric and false heroics often supplied by parent studios in war pictures. Nicholson’s "I don’t know if I feel like feeling anything." pretty much sums it up – a bleak, gritty film, up there with Sam Fuller’s THE STEEL HELMET. With Conrad Maga, Annabelle Huggins.

FLIGHT TO FURY, 1964, 76 min. Dir. Monte Hellman. "You know anything about Death?" asks a smiling Jack Nicholson as he and a planeload of losers, grifters and a girl named Destiny, spurred by rumors of hidden treasure, head into a jungle of deep despair. Shot back-to-back with BACK DOOR TO HELL in the Phillipines and scripted by star, Nicholson, FLIGHT crunches about five different plots into a stew of cheap sex and B-movie angst. In other words, we like it. With Dewey Martin, Fay Spain, John Hackett, Vic Diaz, Jacqueline Hellman. NOT ON DVD. Discussion in between films with director Monte Hellman.