I love the Texas Theatre, and I love the folks currently running the joint, including Stuart Sikes, whom you probably know from his work on many great records. Anyway, jump for how to help them, and enjoy yourself at the same time, with a new film series. (I’ll be there for Blood Simple.)
The Texas Theatre in Oak Cliff announces a new film series to benefit the historic performance center with the best in Indie, Latino and Hollywood films slated to screen.
Weekday screenings include features and documentaries from inventive filmmakers in both the Hollywood and Independent film worlds. Sunday screenings focus on award-winning films from Latin countries and are presented in Spanish with English subtitles.
For a suggested donation of $5, the public can enjoy the screenings, as well as pre-show festivities that include exhibitions from area artists, music from eclectic DJs, and other performances. Doors open one hour before show times, and moviegoers can enjoy cocktails at the lobby bar before and after the screenings.
(On Thursdays, unless noted)
May 13 at 7:30 p.m.: The Thing (1982)
As fearless helicopter pilot R.J. MacReady, Kurt Russell and a crew of scientists that includes Wilford Brimley take on a parasitic, shape-shifting alien on an Antarctic research base. Director John Carpenter’s reworking of a classic ‘50s horror film includes a score by Ennio Morricone.
Tuesday, May 18 at 7:30 p.m.: Blood Simple
Joel and Ethan Coen’s tale of an adulterous couple, a jealous husband and a duplicitous detective in a Texas town has all the sex, double-crosses and murder you could want in a movie. The Coen brothers’ first film took the Sundance film festival’s Grand Jury Prize in 1985 and features fantastic performances from stars John Getz, Francis McDormand, Dan Hedaya and M. Emmet Walsh.
May 27 at 7 p.m.: Double Feature. Howard Hughes’ Hell’s Angels and Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator
The Texas Theatre celebrates its association with eccentric billionaire Howard Hughes with the screening of his first feature film, Hell’s Angels. Billed as “Howard Hughes’ Thrilling Multi-Million Dollar Air Spectacle,” it stars Ben Lyon and James Hall as two RAF pilot brothers who love the same woman, Helen, played by Jean Harlow.
Leonardo DiCaprio stars as Hughes in Martin Scorsese’s biopic The Aviator. The film follows Hughes from the filming of Hell’s Angels in 1930 to the flight of the Blue Spruce in 1947. Big name cast members play big name stars from Hollywood’s Golden Age, including Cate Blanchett as Katharine Hepburn, Kate Beckinsale as Ava Gardner, Jude Law as Errol Flynn and Gwen Stefani as Jean Harlow.
June 3 at 7:30 p.m.: Gimme Shelter
This rock ‘n’ roll doc focuses on the Rolling Stones and the death of an audience member at the hands of a Hell’s Angel during a 1969 show at Altamont Speedway in California. The film also shows the Stones at Madison Square Garden in New York, the band recording its classics “Brown Sugar” and “Wild Horses” in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, and the negotiations leading up to the infamous racetrack concert, where dubious planning and tension led to disaster.
Weekend Latin Series
(On Sundays, unless noted)
May 23 at 3 p.m. Sin Nombre (Without Name)
Director Cary Joji Fukunaga tells the harrowing tale of a young Honduran woman, Sayra, who crosses Latin America to make an illegal entry at the U.S. border. During the trip she meets Mexican gang member El Casper, who hopes to escape his violent past and associates. Together they rely on their wits to reach America and make a new life. Sin Nombre has won several accolades, including Sundance awards for Best Director and Cinematography, and Best Foreign Film from both the Dallas-Fort Worth and Austin film critics associations.
May 30 at 3 p.m.: Los Cronocrimenes (Time Crimes)
In his debut feature, director Nacho Vigalondo plays devilish tricks with his characters, his audience and with time itself. One lazy summer afternoon, Hector sees something unusual that leads him to investigate, and soon he’s on a maddening, bumbling trek through time, trying to save his place in the universe. Awards for Los Cronocrimenes include the Next Wave Award from Austin Fantastic Fest and Best First Work at Spain’s Turia Awards.
June 6 at 3 p.m.: Amores Perros
People from three classes of Mexican society collide in Alejandro GonzÃ¡lez IÃ±Ã¡rritu’s film when Octavio, who fights dogs, flees the arena and causes an accident that injures newlyweds Daniel and Valeria. El Chivo is a homeless man and animal advocate who witnesses the wreck. Written by University of North Texas artist-in-residence, Dallas International Film Festival Star Award-winner and Mexico native Guillermo Arriaga, Amores Perros, was nominated for an Oscar in 2000, won Mexico’s Silver Ariel and has received more than 50 other awards from festivals and critics around the world.