Our neighbors to the south in El Paso are once again firing up the projectors at the historic Plaza Theatre for the Plaza Classic Film Festival. This year’s fifth annual fest takes place Aug. 2 through 12 and will feature a bevy of modern and classic Hollywood films. Organizers have really bumped up the star power this year as well. The guest of honor is no less than Al Pacino! The Oscar-winning actor will participate in a one-night-only Q & A detailing his illustrious career. The event will take place on Saturday, Aug. 4, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $65 to $125. Other fantastic guests include Mary Badham (To Kill a Mockingbird), Eva Marie Saint (North By Northwest, On the Waterfront) and Tippi Hedren (The Birds, Marnie). Among the individual films being screened are 1958’s A Night To Remember, 1951’s An American in Paris, 1998’s The Big Lebowski, 1942’s Casablanca, 2001’s Donnie Darko, 1933’s Duck Soup, 1982’s E.T. The Extraterrestrial, 1966’s The Endless Summer, 1954’s Godzilla, 1994’s Pulp Fiction and 1973’s The Sting. Believe me when I say there’s something for everyone here. The festival is even hosting the “re-premiere” of a newly restored print of 1966’s infamous Z-grade horror flick Manos, The Hands of Fate (which was shot in El Paso). The list of films is simply enormous. Check it out the lineup for yourself. Individual tickets are up for grabs at the box office and all-fest passes are available. Special hotel rates can be found next door at the Camino Real Hotel, if you wanna make a weekend out of it.
Civic Cinema zooms back to Albuquerque’s Civic Plaza on Friday, Aug. 3, with Steven Spielberg’s 1977 sci-fi masterpiece Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The show starts at dusk and will feature a special sneak preview of ABC’s new sitcom “Malibu Country” starring Reba McEntire. It’s free to get in, courtesy of the city’s Cultural Services and Parks and Recreation departments.
The brand new Brew & View Café is presenting a special film screening and art opening this Friday, Aug. 3. Doors open at 6 p.m. for Dance of the Circle: Mandalic Manifestations, a collection of mixed media artworks by Ramona Teo. At 7 p.m. the lights dim for a viewing of “Memory of a Dancer,” a short flamenco dance film shot here in New Mexico by Teo. The film features the fancy footwork of Jessica Herrera and Angelo Trujillo. Admission is free, but you’ll have to pay for your own coffee. Seating is limited, so you might want to RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Brew & View, maintained by Albuquerque arts org Fans of Film, is Albuquerque’s newest venue for film, art, poetry, music and coffee. The café is located at 504 Yale SE, four blocks south of UNM. You can check out upcoming events on Facebook.