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    June Preorders / Summer Cinematic Series

    Posted by Mike Finnegan on

    Could your hi-def Blu-ray collection use an additional infusion of any of the following: 1) Hard-charging World War II battle action? 2) High seas Cold War-era nuclear confrontation? 3) Humidity-drenched, literately-expressed Indochinese intrigue and betrayal? 4) A fascinating insider’s-view of four decades of Mafia history? or 5) Jackie Chan at his high-spirited, loose-limbed acrobatic best? Then look no further than Twilight Time’s title array for next month. Preorders open today at 4 PM EDT/1 PM PDT for the June 13 TT hi-def Blu-ray debuts of The Bridge at Remagen (1969), Hell and High Water (1954), The Quiet American (1958), The Valachi Papers (1972) and a deliriously daffy duo of the classic 1978 Chan Hong Kong kung-fu action comedies Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow and Drunken Master. It’s a world tour that stretches from European capitals and theaters of war to perilous Arctic waters, mysteriously sultry Vietnam, a violence-ridden Big Apple and the Far East of Chinese legend, all available in the shimmering clarity of 1080p for home-viewing discovery.

    Movie buffs in Los Angeles and New York who occasionally like to revisit their TT favorites on large theater screens can look in on some smartly programmed film series these next few months. The UCLA Film and Television Archive’s John Huston: A Retrospective, running from June 9 to August 27 at the Hammer Museum’s Billy Wilder Theater and covering the veteran director’s fabulous body of work from The Maltese Falcon (1941) to The Dead (1986), offers a 35mm print of the Cinemascope World War II saga Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison (1957, available here: http://www.screenarchives.com/title_detail.cfm/ID/27152/HEAVEN-KNOWS-MR-ALLISON-1957/) on a Saturday June 24 double-bill with the marvelously matched The African Queen (1951, in an IB Technicolor print) and the recent DCP restoration (from which TT’s master was derived) of Fat City (1972), paired with Wise Blood (1979) on Saturday July 15. Also making an appearance on Sunday July 23, in a vintage 16mm print, is the recent TT sold-out success Moby Dick (1956). Another Archive series, Opening Wednesday: The Shadow Cinema of the 1970s, uncorks director Sam Peckinpah’s grandiosely gritty Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974), accompanied by a discussion with author and series curator Charles Taylor, whose similarly titled new book on that pivotal decade of filmmaking will be published next week. [Check out the Archive’s Events Calendar for the lowdown on all its summer series here: https://www.cinema.ucla.edu/events]. Director Jerry Schatzberg’s soulful and shattering urban romance The Panic in Needle Park (1971) shows up twice, once on each coast. It can be seen in 35mm at Los Angeles’ New Beverly Cinema on a Saturday/Sunday June 4-5 double bill with that other great Schatzberg/Al Pacino collaboration Scarecrow (1973). [View the New Beverly’s online listing here: http://thenewbev.com/program/june-4-the-panic-in-needle-park-scarecrow/.] It also gets a day’s worth of exhibition at Manhattan’s Film Forum on Friday July 7 as part of that venue’s cheekily coined Ford to City: Drop Dead – New York in the 1970s film series in the recent DCP restoration from which TT’s hi-def master was generated. The final 7 PM showtime that day promises a Q&A afterward with Schatzberg, followed by the Pacino/Sidney Lumet Serpico (1973). [Examine Film Forum’s repertory schedule here: http://filmforum.org/pdf/ff2_cal115_FINAL.pdf.] A later Drop Dead double bill on Tuesday July 18 presciently pairs the TT Woody Allen title Interiors (1978) with Frank Perry’s earlier Diary of a Mad Housewife (1970). Classic movies make the best summer coolers if you have the time and energy, so indulge if you’re able!