Weekly Movie Picks: Coffy, VC Film Fest, Serial Queens of the Silent Screen and More!

CoffyCoffy & Foxy Brown
The New Beverly's two-month Grindhouse festival officially ended on May 1, but they're screening an awesome double-bill: Coffy and Foxy Brown. If only they'd screen Cleopatra Jones along with these films, you'd have God's perfect trio of sexy, ass-kicking blaxploitation flicks.

WHEN: Weds., May 2 - Thurs., May 3
WHERE: The New Beverly: 7165 Beverly Blvd. (1 block West of La Brea Ave.)


Japanese Video Art
The Radical Communication: Japanese Video Art 1968–1988 (video screenings) series combines a survey of the early history of video art in Japan (1968-1988) with presentations of contemporary Japanese video. Running 80 minutes long, the second program in this series features a selection of visual experiments in Japanese video art, including rare examples of early video activism and works that have never been screened in the U.S.

WHEN: Weds., May 2, 2007 at 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Harold M. Williams Auditorium, Getty Center: 1200 Getty Center Drive (West L.A.)
COST: Free, but a reservation is required.

Film Noir
The American Cinematheque's festival of film noir closes with a double bill of The Garment Jungle, a 1957 film about the brutal battle for unionization at a New York garment factory. Lee J. Cobb stars as a clothing manufacturer determined to keep unions out of his shop, but he must contend with his own son, who is sympathetic to the factory workers and befriends a union organizer (a very young Robert Loggia). Directed by Vincent Sherman with input from Robert Aldrich. This is paired with the somewhat hokey still watchable, Abandoned (1949), a story about a young woman who arrives in Los Angeles looking for her missing sister. She joins forces with a newspaperman who helps her untangle the sordid story of her sister's illegitimate baby and a murderous baby-adoption racket.

WHEN: Weds., April 25 - 7:30 PM
WHERE: American Cinematheque at The Egyptian Theater: 6712 Hollywood Blvd., (1 block East of Highland Ave. in Hollywood)


serial Silent QueensSerial Queens of the Silent Screen
A special evening of short silent movies curated by cartoonist Kim Deitch in conjunction with the release of his latest book, Alias The Cat. The program features Pearl White in the Iron Claw, Plunder, and the Lightning Raider, and Ruth Roland in The Timber Queen and much more.

Proceeding the screening there will be a book signing down the street at Family beginning at 6:00 p.m.

WHEN: Thurs., May 3, at 8:00 p.m.
WHERE: The Silent Movie Theater, 611 N. Fairfax Ave. (1 block South of Melrose)

American ZombieVC FilmFest
VC FilmFest 2007, the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, kicks off this Thursday, with a slate of over 150 films and videos from both Asian American and international Asian directors. This year, Los Angeles based filmmakers are prominently featured in the highlighted slots of the festival.

The festival opens with the latest film from Justin Lin (Better Luck Tomorrow; Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift; Annapolis), Finishing the Game, a fictional account of the search for Bruce Lee's successor after his untimely passing during the filming of Game Of Death. Also on tap is Grace Lee's American Zombie, a mockumentary in which the director (playing herself) teams up with a fellow filmmaker to document the lives of a small community of the "living deceased" who make their home in Los Angeles.

The international showcase includes The Blood Of Yingzhou District (China), Tekkonkinkreet (Japan), Eagle Vs. Shark (New Zealand), Todo Todo Teros (Philippines), Invisible Waves (Thailand) and Saigon Eclipse (Vietnam).

Featured films by Asian American directors include Frank Lin's American Fusion, Fay Ann Lee's Falling For Grace, Maryam Kashani's Best In The West and Socheata Poeuv's New Year Baby.

WHEN: Thurs., May 3 - Thurs., May 10
WHERE: The Directors Guild Theater: 7920 Sunset Blvd. (at Fairfax)


Catching Up With James Benning
The Los Angeles Filmforum plans to screen James Benning's six most recent films, all made between the late 1990s and now, over the course of the year. Tonight they begin with Part 1 of The California Trilogy three films that investigating the landscape in and around California. In The California Trilogy, Part 1: El Valley Centro Benning presents a portrait of California's agricultural heartland composed in 35 stationary two-and-a-half minute shots.

WHEN: Sun., May 6, 2007, 7:00 pm
WHERE: The Egyptian Theater: 6712 Hollywood Blvd., (1 block East of Highland Ave. in Hollywood)