In case you didn’t know, movies were meant to be seen on the big screen. To help remind us of this, El Paso Community Foundation is bringing back the Plaza Classic Film Festival. The festival takes place Aug. 5 through 15 at the historic Plaza Theatre in downtown El Paso. For 10 days, a collection of Hollywood classics will unspool on the venue’s venerable screen. We’re talking everything from Airplane! to The African Queen. From Jerry Lewis in The Bellboy to Jeff Bridges in The Big Lebowski. From Jean-Luc Godard’s Breathless to David Lean’s The Bridge on the River Kwai. (My God, I haven’t even gotten past the “B”s!) There are Westerns (A Fistful of Dollars), science fiction (Forbidden Planet), dramas (The Godfather), animation (Heavy Metal), film noir (Murder, My Sweet), musicals (The Rocky Horror Picture Show), foreign films (Seven Samurai), horror films (The Shining), family films (Swiss Family Robinson). It’s enough to make a film lover’s head explode! Definitely worth the trip! Individual tickets and festival passes are available online.
Best of 48
On Saturday, Aug. 7, the KiMo Theatre (423 Central NW) will host the Best of the Albuquerque 48 Hour Film Project. The top shorts shot during the Albuquerque leg of the worldwide 48 Hour Film competition (which took place in July) will be screened starting at 7 p.m. Judges Choice awards will be announced, prizes will be handed out, audience members will be impressed, and winners will go on to fame and glory. Tickets are for sale online and are $10.
Every summer, the legendary Alamo Draft House in Austin sponsors the Rolling Roadshow, a cross-country series of film screenings set, very often, in the actual locations in which the films were made. (Think Dirty Harry in San Francisco, a Rocky marathon in Philadelphia or—ye cats!—The Blues Brothers at Joliet Prison!) This summer, the Roadshow is making a stop right here in New Mexico. On Sunday, Aug. 8, the Fort Union Drive-In in Las Vegas will host a double-feature of made-in-New-Mexico goodies: Sam Peckinpah’s 1978 trucker classic Convoy and John Milius’ 1984 “Brat Pack vs. Commie invaders” flick Red Dawn. Convoy was shot all over the state (including a climactic semi-showdown at The Downs at Albuquerque racetrack) and Red Dawn actually employed the Fort Union as a Russki internment camp. I hear there will be awesome movie-related giveaways and (hopefully) a huge contingent of big rigs surrounding the drive-in. The entire event is free, so you’ve got no excuse not to hit the road this weekend. The fun starts at 8 p.m. Log on to rollingroadshow.com for more awesome info.
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Benda Bilili at National Hispanic Cultural Center
Four paraplegic musicians in Kinshasa who use customized tricycles to get around and document their struggles to survive through music. Lingala and French with English subtitles.
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