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The hot new films of 100 years ago

November 27, 2008|Susan King | King is a Times staff writer.

A whole new generation of innovative filmmakers, such as D.W. Griffith, Emile Cohl and Max Linder, began pushing the envelope of the still-fledgling medium of motion pictures a century ago.

On Monday, several of those films from the silent era that captured the imagination of audiences will be featured in "A Century Ago: The Films of 1908" at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Linwood Dunn Theater. The thriller "Rescued From an Eagle's Nest," featuring Griffith, as well as "After Many Years," which he directed, are among the films that will be screened. There's also the trick film from Vitagraph, "The Thieving Hand"; the Pathe comedy "Troubles of a Grass Widower," starring the French comic mastermind Linder; and an early Italian production, "Le Farfalle."

Most of the films, which have been drawn from numerous collections, including the Academy Film Archive, Library of Congress and the UCLA Film and Television Archive, will be screened in 35-millimeter.

Michael Mortilla provides the live accompaniment.

Jets vs. Sharks

The American Cinematheque's Egyptian Theatre is offering up an "absolutely stunning" new 70-millimeter print Friday and Saturday of the 1961 Oscar-winning musical "West Side Story," directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins, and starring Natalie Wood, Richard Beymer, George Chakiris and Rita Moreno. Chakiris, who won the supporting actor Oscar, is scheduled to appear at Friday evening's screening.

Nyuk, nyuk, nyuk

For knuckleheads of all ages, the Alex Film Society unleashes the 11th Annual Three Stooges Big Screen Event on Saturday at Glendale's Alex Theatre. Among the slapstick sillies being screened are "Three Little Beers" and "Disorder in the Court." The bonus feature is a rarely seen 1974 interview with Stooge Larry Fine.

Raw Milk

With Gus Van Sant's "Milk" currently in theaters, the UCLA Film and Television Archive presents a free screening Monday at the Billy Wilder Theater of the 1984 Oscar-winning documentary, "The Times of Harvey Milk."

More Rudy Ray

The Grindhouse Film Festival pays tribute to the late comic, actor and filmmaker Rudy Ray Moore on Tuesday at the New Beverly Cinema. The event will feature a screening of his trend-setting 1975 film "Dolemite" and the 1976 sequel, "The Human Tornado," plus a Q&A with cast and crew members. /grindhouse.


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