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Creature features walk among us

November 06, 2008|Susan King | King is a Times staff writer.

It's a bit of a monster bash this weekend as the American Cinematheque presents the Attack of the Giant Screen festival at the Aero Theatre.

The fun starts this evening with 1954's Los Angeles-centric "Them!" and 1957's "The Giant Claw." On tap for Friday is Don Siegel's seminal 1956 thriller, "Invasion of the Body Snatchers," and "Earth vs. the Flying Saucers," also from 1956, which features the cutting-edge special effects of Ray Harryhausen. Saturday will bring 1990's "Tremors" and 1986's "Critters." Rounding out the festivities Sunday are two creature features from 1957: "20 Million Miles to Earth" -- another Harryhausen dazzler -- and "The Monster That Challenged the World."

The Cinematheque's Egyptian Theatre pays tribute tonight to director Danny Boyle with a screening of his first international success, the 1995 thriller "Shallow Grave," and his landmark 1996 drama, "Trainspotting." Boyle will introduce the films.

At the Egyptian

The wild and crazy 2004 horror spoof "The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra" screens Sunday at the Egyptian along with the L.A.. premiere of the 2008 sequel, "The Lost Skeleton Returns Again." A discussion follows with director-writer-star Larry Blamire and the cast and crew.

"Gomorrah," Matteo Garrone's epic look at Italy's infamous Camorra crime family, screens Tuesday at the Egyptian. "Gomorrah," which won the jury prize at Cannes, is also the official Italian submission for the foreign-language film Oscar. Garrone will introduce the screening.

Downey duo

Robert Downey Jr. is having a stellar year with "Iron Man" and "Tropic Thunder." And this evening at the Silent Movie Theatre you can catch one of his earliest performances -- he was all of 5 --in his father's 1970 satire "Pound," which screens with the avant-garde filmmaker's 1969 counterculture classic, "Putney Swope."

Robbe-Grillet trio

UCLA Film & Television Archive celebrates "The Labyrinthine World of Alain Robbe-Grillet" with a two-week festival at the Billy Wilder Theater. Screening Friday evening is 1963's "L'Immortelle," which marked the writer's directorial debut, and 1968's "Trans-Europe Express," in which he also plays himself. Set for Sunday is the influential 1961 romantic mystery "Last Year at Marienbad," penned by Robbe-Grillet, who died earlier this year at age 85, and directed by Alain Resnais.


Film at REDCAT presents the first of a three-part program, "Moving Figures: The Animated World of Robert Breer," on Monday. The lineup features 14 of his uniquely animated films that have been restored by the Anthology Film Archives for the first time in 35-millimeter.

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