It’s All About the Shoes [Special Screenings, Jan. 24-31]

The Wizard of Oz. Photo courtesy MGM

On the Basis of Sex. In Mimi Leder’s new bio-drama, Ruth Bader Ginsburg (Felicity Jones) struggles for equal rights and what she had to overcome to become a U.S. Supreme Court Justice. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, 25471 Rancho Niguel Rd., Laguna Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Jan. 24, 11 a.m., 1:45, 4:30, 7:15 & 10:05 p.m. $8-$10; also at Regency South Coast Village, 1561 W. Sunflower Ave., Santa Ana, (714) 557-5701. Thurs., Jan. 24, 1, 4:15, 7 & 9:45 p.m. $8-$11; and Regency Lido Theater, 3459 Via Lido, Newport Beach, (949) 673-8350. Thurs., Jan. 24, 1:30, 4:30 & 7:30 p.m. $9-$11.50.

The Favourite. In Yorgos Lanthimos’ 2018 bio-dramedy, Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) secretly governs early 18th-century England for her close friend Queen Anne (Olivia Colman, in her Golden Globe-winning performance), who is in ill health and bad temper. When servant Abigail (Emma Stone) arrives, a charmed Sarah takes her under her wing, which the newcomer sees as giving her a shot at returning to her aristocratic roots. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Jan. 24, 11:10 a.m., 4 & 7:20 p.m. $8-$10; also at Regency South Coast Village, (714) 557-5701. Thurs., Jan. 24, 4 p.m. $8-$11.

Stan and Ollie. Laurel and Hardy (Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly), the world’s most famous comedy duo, try to reignite their film career as they embark on what becomes their swan song: a grueling theater tour of post-war Britain. Regency South Coast Village, (714) 557-5701. Thurs., Jan. 24, 11:45 a.m., 2:15, 4:45, 7:30 & 9:55 p.m. $8-$11; also at Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Jan. 24, 11:50 a.m., 2:15, 4:45, 7:05 & 9:40 p.m. $8-$10.

Vice. Adam McKay’s bio-drama details the rise of Dick Cheney (Christian Bale and a packed-on 40 pounds, not counting the Golden Glove statue), the most powerful vice president in history. Amy Adams portrays Lynne Cheney, and Steve Carell plays Donald Rumsfeld. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Jan. 24, 12:30, 3:30, 6:40 & 9:45 p.m. $8-$10.

If Beale Street Could Talk. Barry Jenkins’ adaptation of James Baldwin’s novel is set in early 1970s Harlem, where wife-to-be Tish (KiKi Layne) recalls the passion, respect and trust that have connected her and her artist fiancé, Alonzo “Fonny” Hunt (Stephan James). Friends since childhood, the couple’s future is derailed when Fonny is arrested for a crime he did not commit. Art Theatre, 2025 E. Fourth St., Long Beach, (562) 438-5435; arttheatrelongbeach.org. Thurs., Jan. 24, 1:30, 4, 6:30 & 9 p.m. $8.50-$11.50; also at Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Jan. 24, 1:55 & 10 p.m. $8-$10.

Network. The saddest thing about Sidney Lumet’s 1976 satire of television is how less farfetched it has become with each passing day, but thanks to the brilliance of Paddy Chayefsky’s script and Peter Finch’s acting, it remains a classic. Finch plays a TV anchor who can’t take it anymore—something he tells his audience with growing, deranged desperation. When his show racks up boffo ratings, his network cynically exploits him (naturally). The Frida Cinema, 305 E. Fourth St., Santa Ana; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Jan. 24, 2:30, 5:30 & 8 p.m. $7-$10.

Vox Lux. In Brady Corbet’s new drama, 13-year-old music prodigy Celeste achieves pop stardom from the ashes of tragedy. Fast-forward two decades, and a now-adult Celeste (Natalie Portman) embarks on a tour while grappling with motherhood, monolithic fame and mounting madness. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Jan. 24, 2:30, 5 & 7:30 p.m. $7-$10.

The Final Wish. Photo courtesy Fathom Events

The Final Wish. Actor/producer/director Timothy Woodward Jr.’s new horror film is about a young man (Michael Welch) who returns home to care for his mother (Lin Shaye) after his father dies. The son also confronts his past as he goes through his father’s belongings and finds a mysterious item that is more than it seems. The cinematic event beamed into theaters nationwide includes a recorded introduction from Shaye and a Q&A with cast and crew who are at the Screamfest Horror Film Festival. AMC Fullerton 20, 1001 S. Lemon St., Fullerton, (714) 992-6962; AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, 20 City Blvd. W., Orange, (714) 769-4288; Cinemark Century Stadium 25, 1701 W. Katella Ave., Orange, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, 7777 Edinger Ave., Huntington Beach, (800) 967-1932; Cinemark at the Pike Theaters, 99 S. Pine Ave., Long Beach, (562) 435-5754; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, 26701 Aliso Creek Rd., Aliso Viejo, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, 255 W. Birch St., Brea, (714) 672-4136; Edwards Foothill Towne Center Stadium 22, 26602 Towne Center Dr., Foothill Ranch, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, 65 Fortune Dr., Irvine, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, 7501 E. Carson, Long Beach, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Metro Pointe Stadium 12, 901 South Coast Dr., Costa Mesa, (714) 428-0962; Regal Garden Grove Stadium 16, 9741 Chapman Ave., Garden Grove, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Thurs., Jan. 24, 7:30 p.m. $12.50.

Gräns (Border). Ali Abbasi’s award-winning 2018 Swiss fantasy rom-dram is about a dockside customs officer (Eva Melander) with an extraordinary sense of smell that allows her to detect contraband and passenger nervousness. Resembling a Geico ad cavewoman, she encounters a mysterious man (Eero Milonoff) with similar facial features but who gives off no scent. He fascinates her, and they develop a special bond that uncovers revelations about her origin story. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri., 2:30, 6 & 8:30 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 5, 7:30 & 9:50 p.m.; Mon., 5:30 & 8 p.m.; Tues., 2:30 & 5:30 p.m.; Wed.-Thurs., Jan. 31, 2:30, 5, 7:30 & 9:50 p.m. $7-$10.

Cold War. Presented in black and white is this passionate love story set in the 1950s. Politics, character flaws and unfortunate twists of fate keep a mismatched couple separated in the ruins of post-war Poland, Berlin, Yugoslavia and Paris. Presented in Polish with English subtitles. Art Theatre; arttheatrelongbeach.org. Fri.-Thurs., Jan. 31, 3, 5, 7 & 9 p.m. $8.50-$11.50; also at Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Opens Fri. Call theater for show times. $8-$10.

South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut. I vividly recall attending the opening of Trey Parker and Matt Stone’s animated comedy 20 years ago. During a movie within the movie—as such dialogue as “shit-faced cock master,” “donkey-raping shit eater” and “shut your face, uncle fucker” was spewed—parents pulling very young kids stampeded out of the Costa Mesa theater. Toy Story 2 this was not. After Cartman and his pals from the popular Comedy Central show see Terrance and Philip’s R-rated Asses of Fire, they bust out strings of swear words, prompting their parents to blame Canada. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri.-Sat., 10 p.m. $7-$10.

The Blair Witch Project. HorrorBuzz.com presents a 20th-anniversary screening of Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez’s film that ignited the found-footage horror fad. The story is told from the “real” video footage left behind by a trio making a student film about a local Maryland urban legend. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri., 11 p.m. $7-$10.

Who Will Write Our History. Roberta Grossman’s new documentary is about a clandestine group of scholars, journalists and community leaders who, under the code name Oyneg Shabes, fought back against the Nazis while held in the Warsaw Ghetto in 1940s Poland. But Oyneg Shabes used pen and paper instead of guns and fists, and Grossman mixes their words with new interviews. Presented in Polish, Yiddish and English. Art Theatre; arttheatrelongbeach.org. Sat.-Sun., 11 a.m. $8.50-$11.50.

BTS World Tour “Love Yourself” in Seoul. Photo courtesy Fathom Events

BTS World Tour “Love Yourself” in Seoul. Shot in the South Korea capital city’s Olympic Stadium was one of 2018’s top concert acts worldwide. (Who knew?) This one-day-only cinematic event is aimed at the boy band’s U.S. fans. AMC Fullerton 20, (714) 992-6962; AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, (714) 769-4288; AMC Tustin Legacy at the District, 2457 Park Ave., Tustin, (714) 258-7036; www.fathomevents.com. Sat., 11 a.m., 2 & 5 p.m. $15; also at Cinemark Century Stadium 25, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, (800) 967-1932; Cinemark at the Pike Theaters, (562) 435-5754; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Anaheim Hills 14, 8030 E. Santa Ana Canyon Rd., Anaheim Hills, (714) 282-5953; Edwards Big Newport 6, 300 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, (714) 672-4136; Edwards Foothill Towne Center Stadium 22, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Kaleidoscope Stadium 10, 27741 Crown Valley Pkwy., Mission Viejo, (949) 582-4078; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Market Place Stadium 10, 13782 Jamboree Rd., Irvine, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Metro Pointe Stadium 12, (714) 428-0962; Regal Garden Grove Stadium 16, (844) 462-7342; Regal La Habra Stadium 16, 1351 W. Imperial Hwy., La Habra, (562) 690-4909; www.fathomevents.com. Sat., 11 a.m. & 2 p.m. $15; and at CGV Cinemas Buena Park 8, 6988 Beach Blvd., (714) 252-6826. Sat., regular, 4 p.m.; in ScreenX, 7:30 p.m. $15-$19.

Eyes Wide Shut. Stanley Kubrick died six days after the first test screening of his final film, which proved to be just as polarizing as most of the master’s other pictures. Twenty years later, many regard it as his best work. A married couple (Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, who were actually married during filming and the 1999 release) deals with her sexual fantasies involving a naval officer and his revenge fascination with a freaky swingers’ club in a country mansion. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sat.-Sun., 11 a.m., 2:30 & 5:30 p.m. $7-$10.

Butch Mystique. The L-Project presents Debra A. Wilson’s award-winning documentary short that “exposes the rules, thoughts, passions and concerns of African-American butch/stud-identified lesbians.” A portion of the proceeds go to the current production of the feature-length Where Are They Now: Beyond the Butch Mystique, which is curated by the Center for Independent Documentary Film. Executive Suite, 3428 Pacific Coast Hwy., Long Beach; www.documentaries.org/beyond-the-butch-mystique. Sat., 3 p.m. $10.

Butch Mystique. Photo courtesy MoYo Entertainment

The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The pioneering midnight movie starts with the car of sweethearts Brad and Janet (Barry Bostwick and Susan Sarandon) breaking down near the eerie mansion of Dr. Frank-N-Furter (Tim Curry). The transvestite scientist’s home also hosts a rocking biker (Meat Loaf), a creepy butler (Richard O’Brien) and assorted freaks, including a hunk of beefcake named “Rocky.” Live shadow-cast troupe Midnight Insanity performs. Art Theatre; arttheatrelongbeach.org. Sat., 11:55 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.

The Wizard of Oz. Victor Fleming’s 1939 family classic is beamed into theaters nationwide to celebrate 80 years of following the yellow brick road. Dorothy (Judy Garland); her dog Toto (Terry); and new friends the Scarecrow (Ray Bolger), the Tin Man (Jack Haley) and the Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr) go to Emerald City in hopes the Great and Powerful Oz (Frank Morgan) can return the young lady and her little yapper home to Kansas. The screening event includes exclusive insights from a Turner Classic Movies host. AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, (714) 769-4288; AMC Tustin Legacy at the District, (714) 258-7036; www.fathomevents.com. Sun., 2 & 5 p.m.; Tues.-Wed., 7 p.m. $12.50; also at Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Big Newport 6, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, (714) 672-4136; Edwards Foothill Towne Center Stadium 22, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; Regal Garden Grove Stadium 16, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Sun., 2 p.m.; Tues.-Wed., 7 p.m. $12.50; and at Cinemark Century Stadium 25, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, (800) 967-1932; Cinemark at the Pike Theaters, (562) 435-5754; www.fathomevents.com. Sun., 2 & 5 p.m.; Wed., 7 p.m. $12.50.

The Moment. Darcy Turenne’s feature-length, action-sports documentary is about “the birth of a sport that nobody wanted.” The origins of freeride mountain biking are tracked to the backwoods of British Columbia and the people who started it. Laguna Beach Beer Co., 859 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach; www.facebook.com/richie.schley.58. Sun., 5 p.m. $17.

Cartoon Block Party. Frida seeks to re-create your childhood Saturday mornings in front of the TV with a secret lineup of animated offerings and classic commercials, a bar serving multicolored cereals and pancakes (prepared by the cinema space’s chef, the Witch of the Waste), as well as “surprises.” Wear jammies, as there’s a best PJs contest. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sun., 8:30 p.m. $5.

Gravity. Frida’s Alfonso Cuarón retrospective continues with the 2013 blockbuster that earned him his first Best Director Oscar. A mundane space-shuttle mission is undone by damaging debris that maroons a veteran astronaut (George Clooney) and an engineer (Sandra Bullock) on her first space mission. Emmanuel Lubezki’s cinematography is breathtaking, and the story is compelling, although some are dubious of the science. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Mon., 5, 7 & 9 p.m.; Tues., 2:30, 5, 7 & 9 p.m. $7-$10.

A Silent Voice: The Movie. The new Eleven Arts anime has a popular boy bullying a deaf girl so much their class shuns him. She transfers, he becomes an outcast and, alone and depressed, he sets off to find her to make amends. AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, (714) 769-4288; AMC Tustin Legacy at the District, (714) 258-7036; Cinemark Century Stadium 25, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, (800) 967-1932; Cinemark at the Pike Theaters, (562) 435-5754; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Big Newport 6, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, (714) 672-4136; Edwards Foothill Towne Center Stadium 22, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Mon. (in Japanese with English subtitles) & Thurs., Jan. 31 (dubbed), 7 p.m. $12.50.

Being John Malkovich. Frida wraps up a collection of 20th-anniversary screenings with Spike Jonze’s freaky comedy about a temporary file clerk (John Cusack) who discovers a small door that opens into the mind of actor John Malkovich (played brilliantly by you-know-who). After the temp and a co-worker (Catherine Keener) charge admission to spend 15 minutes inside Malkovich’s noggin, the actor suspects something strange is happening. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Wed.-Thurs., Jan. 31, 2:30, 5:30 & 8 p.m. $7-$10.

Bohemian Rhapsody. Photo by Alex Bailey/courtesy GK Films

Bohemian Rhapsody. As a big fan of Queen (“We Are the Champions” was my high-school senior-class song) and Rami Malek (mad respect for his lead acting on Mr. Robot), I couldn’t help but thoroughly enjoy this cinematic celebration of the English rock band and their flamboyant front man, Freddie Mercury. But while I can go along with the Golden Globe for Malek’s portrayal of Mercury, the Best Picture nod? Hmm . . . Bohemian Rhapsody covers the formation of Queen and their meteoric rise, culminating in a masterfully re-created Live Aid performance. The drama is amped up by Mercury taking the stage while facing a life-threatening illness, although in real life, “Gorgeous” fell sick years later, after many more performances. The free, outdoor screening event begins with a trivia contest loosely based on the film. (Maximum trivia team size is six people, and space is limited; sign up at www.4thstreetmarket.com/trivianight.) Surrounding bars, eateries and dessert shops stay open until 9 p.m. 4th Street Market, 201 E. Fourth St., Santa Ana; thefridacinema.org. Wed., trivia contest, 7 p.m.; screening, 8 p.m. Free.

Casablanca. In Michael Curtiz’s 1942 masterpiece, American expatriate Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart) puts his past behind him by running a gin joint in Morocco during the beginning of World War II. Then his former lover Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman), who’d left him waiting for her at a Paris train station one day before war broke out, walks into his nightclub, and everything goes to merde. Regency South Coast Village, (714) 557-5701. Wed., 7:30 p.m. $9.

Trumbo. This month’s Thursday Matinee Film Series theme is “About the Author.” Jay Roach’s bio-drama subject is Dalton Trumbo (Bryan Cranston), who was Hollywood’s top screenwriter in 1947—until he and other artists were jailed and blacklisted for their political beliefs. Bring snacks and beverages, but no booze lest you wind up on a library blacklist. Fullerton Public Library, 353 W. Commonwealth Ave., Fullerton, (714) 738-6327. Thurs., Jan. 31, 1 p.m. Free.

1948: Creation and Catastrophe. The schools of Social Ecology and Social Sciences present this documentary on the shocking events of the most pivotal year in the most controversial conflict in the world. Israelis and Palestinians share their moving personal recollections. The film is followed by a panel discussion. UC Irvine Paul Merage School of Business Auditorium, 4293 Pereira Dr., Irvine; socialecology.uci.edu/webforms/1948. Thurs., Jan. 31, screening, 6:15 p.m.; panel, 7:45 p.m. Free, but RSVP via the website.

The Least of These: The Graham Staines Story. Based on a true story and shot on location in India, the new drama has a local journalist (Sharman Joshi) investigating an Australian missionary (Stephen Baldwin) suspected of illegally proselytizing to leprosy patients. But when the undercover newspaperman discovers revelations that are difficult to fathom and explain, he must choose between ambition and dispensing the truth. AMC Tustin Legacy at the District, (714) 258-7036; Cinemark Century Stadium 25, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, (800) 967-1932; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium East 12, 155 W. Birch St., Brea, (714) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, (714) 672-4136; Edwards Foothill Towne Center Stadium 22, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Metro Pointe Stadium 12, (714) 428-0962; www.fathomevents.com. Thurs., Jan. 31, 7 p.m. $12.50.

Matt Coker has been engaging, enraging and entertaining readers of newspapers, magazines and websites for decades. He spent the first 13 years of his career in journalism at daily newspapers before “graduating” to OC Weekly in 1995 as the paper’s first calendar editor. He went on to be managing editor, executive editor and is now senior staff writer.

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