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A rock 'n' roll picture show

The Beatles, Stax and Monterey Pop top the bill at this year's Mods & Rockers film fest.

June 18, 2007|From a Times staff writer

A rare Beatles documentary, a reunion of performers from the 1967 Monterey International Pop Festival and salutes to D.A. Pennebaker and Stax Records are among the highlights of this year's Mods & Rockers Film Festival.

The American Cinematheque's eighth annual festival of rock-related movies will run from July 13 to Aug. 1 at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood and the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica.

The festival will open with "What's Happening! The Beatles in the USA," a documentary by Albert and David Maysles about the British group's first visit to the United States in 1964.

Portions have been seen in other forms, but the full production has seldom been seen and never theatrically in California, according to Martin Lewis, the festival's co-founder and co-producer.

A screening of Pennebaker's "Monterey Pop" on July 19 also will feature many of the performers seen in the film, Lewis said, including Grace Slick, Eric Burdon, Michelle Phillips, Scott McKenzie, Johnny Rivers and members of such bands as Electric Flag, Canned Heat and Moby Grape.

Pennebaker, 81, is scheduled to appear for screenings of his Bob Dylan documentaries "Don't Look Back" and "Bob Dylan '65 Revisited" on July 20 and his Stax Records documentary, "Only the Strong Survive," on July 21.

Four other films about Stax -- the home of such artists as Otis Redding, the Staple Singers, Isaac Hayes and Booker T. & the MG's -- will be shown July 21 and 22, including the premiere of a documentary about the label, "Respect Yourself."

The 50th anniversary of the release of "Jailhouse Rock" will be observed with a screening July 27, including an appearance by renowned songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, who wrote most of the tunes that Elvis Presley sang in the movie.

Other elements of the festival include art and photo exhibitions at the Egyptian.

Tickets go on sale today. More information is available at

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