Eighth Grade. Standup comic Bo Burnham’s writing and directing feature debut is about an introverted girl (Elsie Fisher) trying to survive her disastrous eighth grade year before she is off to high school. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, 25471 Rancho Niguel Rd., Laguna Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Aug. 16, 11:50 a.m., 2:10, 4:30, 6:55 & 9:10 p.m. $9.50-$12.50; Art Theatre, 2025 E. Fourth St., Long Beach, (562) 438-5435. Thurs., Aug. 16, 2, 4:15 & 9 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood. Matt Tyrnauer’s documentary is based on the best-selling memoir of Scott Bowers, a sexual procurer to Hollywood stars and, until now, an unsung legend. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Aug. 16, noon, 2:30, 5, 7:20 & 9:40 p.m. $9.50-$12.50.
Blackkklansman. Directed by Spike Lee, produced by Jordan Peele and based on a true story, the film is set in the early 1970s, when a black Colorado Springs police detective (John David Washington) tries to make a name for himself by infiltrating the Ku Klux Klan. But he must recruit a white partner (Adam Driver) to take down a KKK that is simultaneously trying to—ahem—whitewash its hateful reputation. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Aug. 16, 12:45, 3:45, 6:45 & 9:45 p.m. $9.50-$12.50; also at Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Opens Fri.; call theater for show times and ticket prices.
Leave No Trace. Writer/director Debra Granik (Winter’s Bone, Down to the Bone) has a small mistake forever derailing the lives of a father (Ben Foster) and his 13-year-old daughter (Thomasin McKenzie). Until then, their existence had been ideal in a vast urban park in Portland, Oregon. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Thurs., Aug. 16, 2:15 & 7:05 p.m. $9.50-$12.50; also at Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Thurs., Aug. 16, 6:30 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
Jezebel. The first film to play at the Lido Theater is back to help celebrate the historic Newport Beach movie house’s 80th anniversary. Bette Davis, who lived in Corona del Mar in 1938, is said to have driven past the theater daily while it was under construction and convinced the owners to not only open with her new movie, Jezebel, but also to install a sitting parlor in the ladies room, which remains to this day. In one of her most renowned roles, she plays an impetuous Southern belle who drives away her successful banker fiancé (Henry Fonda). He eventually returns, but perhaps too late for her to win him back. The screening, which opens with a champagne reception, benefits Lupus International. Regency Lido Theater, 3459 Via Lido, Newport Beach; bit.ly/2NSIewZ. Thurs., Aug. 16, 6 p.m. $20.
Elvis ’68 Comeback Special. It’s a 50th-anniversary screening of the television special that had Elvis Presley performing before a live audience for the first time in years, relaunching his career. A making-of feature is included in the screening event. AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, 20 City Blvd. W., Orange, (714) 769-4288; AMC Tustin Legacy at the District, 2457 Park Ave., Tustin, (714) 258-7036; 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 (Mon. only); Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, 26701 Aliso Creek Rd., Aliso Viejo, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Big Newport 6, 300 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, 255 W. Birch St., Brea, (714) 672-4136; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, 65 Fortune Dr., Irvine, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, 7501 E. Carson, Long Beach, (844) 462-7342; Regal Garden Grove Stadium 16, 9741 Chapman Ave., Garden Grove, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Thurs., Aug. 16 and Mon., 7:30 p.m. $15.
Casablanca. To celebrate the history of movie-making at Crystal Cove State Park, Crystal Cove Conservancy shows movies on the beach this summer, such as 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. Crystal Cove State Park, “Beaches” Film & Media Center (historic Cottage No. 13), 8471 N. Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach, (949) 497-7647. Thurs., Aug. 16, 8 p.m. Free, but there is a $15 day use fee for parking in the inland lot at PCH and Los Trancos and then walking or taking a shuttle across the street.
Miami Connection. The Bombs Away podcast, which originates from inside Frida’s projection room, takes over the stage with a live recording of the film-skewering show and a screening of the 1987 B-movie. Martial arts pop/synth band Dragon Sound goes up against motorcycle ninjas with a tight grip on Florida’s drug trade in the action flick. Besides seeing it and hearing the podcast, you can pose on stage with a Dragon Sound cutout, compete in a costume contest, reach into a mailbox to hopefully “find your father” and either purchase or try to win a commemorative T-shirt, collectors cup or other prizes. The Frida Cinema, 305 E. Fourth St., Santa Ana; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Aug. 16, 8 p.m. $15.
Puzzle. In Marc Turtletaub’s new drama, Kelly Macdonald (Boardwalk Empire, No Country for Old Men) plays Agnes, who reached her 40s sheltered from most of the outside world, first by her widowed father, then by her domineering husband (David Denman) and two sons. After receiving a puzzle as a birthday gift, Agnes becomes such a whiz at putting it and other puzzles together that she gets recruited by a wealthy inventor (Irrfan Khan) to be his partner in the world jigsaw tournament. The journey there opens Agnes’ eyes to what she has missed her whole life. AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, (714) 769-4288; Cinemark Century Stadium 25, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, (714) 373-4573; Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, (714) 672-4136; The Lot Fashion Island, 999 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, (949) 281-0069; Edwards Foothill Towne Center Stadium 22, 26602 Towne Center Dr., Foothill Ranch, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; Regency South Coast Village, 1561 W. Sunflower Ave., Santa Ana, (714) 557-5701; UA Long Beach 6, 6601 Pacific Coast Hwy., Long Beach, (844) 462-7342. Opens Fri.; call theaters for show times and ticket prices.
Dune. The Directors series tribute to David Lynch continues with his 1984 adaptation of Frank Herbert’s epic saga that is set in the 11th millennium, when a galactic emperor (José Ferrer) sends a family (Jürgen Prochnow, Francesca Annis and Kyle MacLachlan) on an errand to a desert planet. But the family was actually set up for a cruel trap that the son survives before exacting his revenge. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri., 1, 4, 7 & 10 p.m.; Sat., 4 & 7 p.m. $7-$10.
Cowboy Bebop: The Movie. Funimation Films celebrates the 20th anniversary of its anime sensation with a big-screen rerelease that is presented in Japanese with English subtitles. The spaceship Bebop’s bounty-hunter crew seeks a 300 million woo-long reward by catching the terrorists responsible for unleashing a deadly virus on the Mars populace in 2071. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri., 2:30, 5:30 & 8 p.m.; Sun., 2:30 & 7:30 p.m. $7-$10.
Zootopia. Yet another recent toon with funny people voicing animals (or is it vice versa?). A rabbit cop tries to solve a missing-persons case in a city inhabited by anthropomorphic animals (Foothill Ranch?). Los Alamos Park, 17901 Los Alamos St., Fountain Valley; www.fountainvalley.org/856/Special-Events. Fri., 6 p.m. Free.
Avengers: Infinity War. The Avengers—Captain America (Chris Evans), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), et al.—sacrifice everything to try to stop the powerful Thanos (Josh Brolin) from snuffing out the universe. Attendees of the Source OC’s Outdoor Movie Night can capitalize on neighboring stores’ and eateries’ coupons and discounts, but movie seating is first-come, first-served. The Source OC, 6940 Beach Blvd., Buena Park, (714) 521-8858; www.thesourceoc.com. Fri., 7 p.m. Free.
The Secret Life of Pets. A 3D-animated tale about a terrier (voiced by Louis C.K., who could use a residual check about now) enjoying a comfortable life in New York until his owner adopts a giant and unruly canine, and both pooches wind up in a truck bound for the pound. Bring chairs and blankets, but keep dogs leashed and leave the booze at home. Grand Park, 6101 City Lights Dr., Aliso Viejo, (949) 243-7750. Fri., 7:30 p.m. Free.
Cars 3. The Disney/Pixar computer animated franchise flick is about veteran race car Lightning McQueen (voiced by Owen Wilson) mentoring a newcomer (Cristela Alonzo), just as he was in the original picture by an old stock car (Paul Newman). Placentia Champions Sports Complex, 505 N. Jefferson, Placentia, (714) 993-8232. Fri., 8 p.m. Free.
A League of Their Own. Penny Marshall’s fact-based 1992 biopic follows two sisters who joined the first female professional baseball league. Geena Davis, Madonna and Tom “There’s No Crying in Baseball É I’m David S. Pumpkins” Hanks star. Yorba Regional Park, 7600 E. La Palma Ave., Anaheim, (714) 973-6838. Fri., dusk. Free.
The Lego Ninjago Movie. It’s the computer animated movie about a teenager (voiced by Dave Franco) enlisting his ninja pals (including Jackie Chan) to bring down his evil warlord of a father. Pearson Park Amphitheatre, 401 N. Lemon St., Anaheim, (714) 765-5274. Fri., 8 p.m. Free.
Summer of ’84. OC Weekly’s Friday Night Freakouts entry is the new horror film that took the most recent Sundance Film Festival by storm. During the New Wave days of the early 1980s, a young conspiracy theorist (Graham Verchere) suspects his police officer neighbor (Rich Sommer) is a serial killer, so he recruits his three best friends to help investigate. The trailer brings to mind Stranger Things, minus the supernatural elements. Frida joins arthouses nationwide presenting late-night screenings of the flick directed by RKSS (Francois Simard, Anuk Whissell, Yoann-Karl Whissell). The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri.-Sat., 11 p.m.; Sun., 10 p.m. $7-$10.
Japan Film Festival Los Angeles. Though LA is in the title, some screenings are farmed out to OC. These include: The Gift of Memory (1+2), Isao Yukisada’s drama about a film director (Sung-Jung Kang) and a young woman (Ai Hashimoto) traveling to scout a location both are connected to. A filmmaker talk follows (Sat., 10 a.m. Free); Behind the Cove, which is Keiko Yagi’s answer to the negative portrayal of Japanese whaling in the Oscar-winning documentary The Cove. A talk by Yagi follows (Sat., 11:45 a.m.); Bridge Over Troubled Water, where writer/director Takafumi Ota takes audiences back to 1989 and stories from Japan’s economic boom (Sat., 2:30 p.m.); Wake Up America, writer/director Junichi Suzuki’s drama about a 37-year-old woman who breaks out of her stale routine by journeying to the United States to learn English, see new sights, meet new people and discover herself (Sat., 5:10 p.m.); The Scythian Lamb, Daiachi Yoshida’s thriller about a sleepy seaside town official welcoming six mysterious strangers: a malevolent boatman, a sexy caregiver, a frightening launderer, a timid barber, a methodical cleaning woman and a simple-minded deliveryman. Support for their assimilation changes with the discovery of a dead body (Sun., 10 a.m.); Hana’s Miso Soup, writer/director Tomoaki Akune’s drama about a young woman diagnosed with cancer soon after becoming engaged, undergoing treatment that leaves her unable to bear children and experiencing a miracle when she becomes pregnant—with the understanding that carrying to term creates a high risk the cancer will return (Sun., 12:20 p.m.); “Ito” – Strings, Kinshiro Ogino’s drama about a woman escaping an abusive relationship in Tokyo by going back home to an East Japan island—with her ex-fiancé’s 6-year-old child in tow (Sun., 2:40 p.m.) Movies are presented in Japanese with English subtitles. Newport Beach Higashi Honganji, 254 Victoria St., Costa Mesa; www.jffla.org. Sat.-Sun., various times. $15 per screening unless otherwise indicated.
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Prove what a die-hard fan you are of Peter Jackson’s franchise by taking in all three films starting with . . . uh, scratch that: This mega-event is WAAAAAY sold out. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sat., 11:30 a.m. Sold out.
The Monster Squad. Festival Obscura and Sunnyside Cemetery present Fred Dekker’s 1987 family friendly monster movie that is a comic hybrid of The Goonies and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Five classic film and literary monsters, led by Count Dracula, invade a small town looking for a lost amulet that will help them rule the world—but not if those meddling kids on the Monster Squad stop ’em first. Besides the film, you’ll find music, food trucks, a vintage monster movie trailer showcase and on-site printing of commemorative t-shirts. Bring blankets, low-back chairs and picnics if you desire. Sunnyside Cemetery, 1095 E. Willow St., Long Beach; www.facebook.com/sunnysidecemetery/; www.facebook.com/festivalobscura/. Sat., 6 p.m. (gates open), dusk (movie). $13-$14. Parking is extremely limited so arrive early.
Movie Night with All Puppet Players. Sorry MST300/Rifftrax’s Joel and Mike, no live-action players, only puppets, crack wise about the film flashed on the screen—to mature audiences only. First up is Teen Witch, a 1989 rom-com about a high school misfit (Robyn Lively) who uses new magical powers to try to snag popularity and a hunky jock (Dan Gauthier). Next comes the 1984 family adventure The NeverEnding Story, where a tormented boy (Barret Oliver) slips into a book shop to escape schoolyard bullies. He “borrows” an ancient storybook about the mythical land of Fantasia, which is in desperate need of a hero. An audience Q&A follows each screening. Maverick Theater, 110 E. Walnut Ave., Fullerton; www.allpuppetplayers.com. Sat., 7 p.m. (Teen Witch) and 10 p.m. (The NeverEnding Story) $10. 17+.
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. Elliot, little Drew Barrymore’s scream and dudes in space suits are back for the ultimate going-home flick. Steven Spielberg’s classic family film celebrated its 35th year in release in September 2017, something you can still celebrate by seeing the picture projected onto a large screen in high-definition and synched with a live performance of John Williams’ Oscar-winning score by the Pacific Symphony Orchestra. Pacific Amphitheatre, 100 Fair Dr., Costa Mesa; www.pacificsymphony.org. Sat., 8 p.m. $12.50-$99.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi. San Clemente-raised director Rian Johnson’s 2017 action-adventure flick from the prolific franchise has Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) helping Rey (Daisy Ridley) develop her newly discovered abilities. Meanwhile, the Resistance prepares for battle with the First Order. Mustang Fields, 4175 Fairmont Blvd., Yorba Linda, (714) 961-7192. Sat., 8 p.m. Free.
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.” See live shadow-cast troupe Midnight Insanity shimmy to “The Time Warp.” Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Sat., 11:55 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Follow Arthur, King of the Britons, Sir Lancelot the Brave and Sir Robin the Not-So-Brave-as-Sir-Lancelot as they follow God’s directive to find the Holy Grail. Frida presents Rainbow Releasing’s brand new mega-restoration of the 1975 cult classic, which audiences will supposedly enjoy in “the highest definition ever!” The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sun., noon, 2 and 4:30 p.m.; Sun.-Tues., 7 p.m.; Mon.-Tues., 2:30, 5 and 9:15 p.m. $7-$10.
Mulholland Drive. The Directors series tribute continues with David Lynch’s creepy 2001 neo-noir mystery surrounding Rita (Laura Harring), who is involved in a car crash on Mulholland Drive in Hollywood with two men who are apparently evil. One man dies, yet Rita remembers nothing, not even her name. Perky wannabe starlet Betty (Naomi Watts) helps her search Los Angeles for clues. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sun., 9 p.m.; Mon.-Tues., 2:30, 5:30 and 8:30 p.m. $7-$10.
An Interview with God. A war reporter (Brenton Thwaites) returns from Afghanistan with jittery nerves, a dying faith and a crumbling marriage. He dives into an assignment to interview a man (David Strathairn) who claims to be God. Director Perry Lang and screenwriter Ken Aguado use the setup to get audiences to think about what they would ask the Almighty if given the chance. 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, (714) 373-4573; Cinemark at the Pike Theaters, 99 S. Pine Ave., Long Beach, (562) 435-5754; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Big Newport 6, (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, 26602 Towne Center Dr., Foothill Ranch, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Metro Pointe Stadium 12, 901 South Coast Dr., Costa Mesa, (714) 428-0962; www.fathomevents.com. Mon.-Wed., 7 p.m. $12.50.
The Night Is Short, Walk on Girl. Enjoy one epic night in Kyoto. Masaaki Yuasa’s anime is presented in the original Japanese with English subtitles. AMC Fullerton, 1001 S. Lemon St., Fullerton, (714) 992-6962; 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, (714) 373-4573; Cinemark at the Pike Theaters, (562) 435-5754; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Brea Stadium West 10, (714) 672-4136; 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. Tues.-Wed., 7 p.m. $12.50.
The Princess Bride. Rob Reiner’s excellent adventure movie from 1987 has swashbuckler Westley (Cary Elwes) trying to save his childhood sweetheart Buttercup (Robin Wright) from marrying a real douche. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, (949) 831-0446. Tues., 7:30 p.m. $8.
Up. I want to say I saw this animated entry that Film Club presents and that Ed Asner was great voicing an old guy (such a stretch!), but damn if I can remember the story. Costa Mesa Donald Dungan Library, Community Room, 1855 Park Ave., Costa Mesa, (949) 646-8845. Tues., 4:45 p.m. Free.
Wild at Heart. The Directors series tribute to David Lynch continues with his 1990 Cannes’ Palme d’Or winner that is based on the novels of Barry Gifford. Sailor and Lula (Nicolas Cage and Laura Dern) leave North Carolina for California (by way of New Orleans), even though that means he will be breaking his parole on a manslaughter rap. The trip sets off Lula’s deranged mother (Diane Ladd, in a Oscar-nominated performance), who hires a private detective (Harry Dean Stanton) to find the star-crossed lovers as well as a hitman (J.E. Freeman) to rub out Sailor. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Wed.-Thurs., 2:30, 6 and 8:30 p.m. $7-$10.
Despicable Me 3. The animated 2017 hit has the mumble-mouthed Minions wanting back their old crime boss, but the fired Gru (voiced by Steve Carrell) considers himself retired as he sets off to meet his long-lost twin brother. Bring blankets and chairs to the outdoor screening, which includes food trucks on site. Tewinkle Park, 885 Junipero Ave., Costa Mesa. Wed., 5:45 p.m. (doors open), dusk (movie). Free. Also at Atlantis Play Center, 13630 Atlantis Way, Garden Grove, (714) 741-5200. Thurs., Aug. 23, 5:30 p.m. Free.
Gremlins. A boy (Zach Galligan) inadvertently breaks three important rules concerning his new pet, unleashing a horde of malevolently mischievous monsters on a small town in this 1984 horror comedy directed by the great Joe Dante from a script by the great Chris Columbus. Regency South Coast Village, (714) 557-5701. Wed., 7:30 p.m. $9.
Mr. Holmes. The Thursday Matinee film series, whose theme this month is “Older and Wiser,” continues with Bill Condon’s 2015 drama-mystery that has a retired Sherlock Holmes (Ian McKellen) dealing with early dementia just as a young fan (Milo Parker) tries to convince the legendary sleuth to work again. Snooped out snacks and beverages? Bring ’em to this screening, so long as they aren’t booze. Fullerton Public Library, Osborne Auditorium, 353 W. Commonwealth Ave., Fullerton, (714) 738-6327. Thurs., Aug. 23, 1 p.m. Free.
Rifftrax Live! Krull. Rifftraxers Bill, Mike and Kevin for the first time take on Peter Yates’ swashbuckling space opera thriller. On the magical planet Krull, the wedding plans of Princess Lyssa (Lysette Anthony) and Prince Colwyn (Ken Marshall) are interrupted by invader The Beast and his army of Slayers, who kidnap the bride-to-be. 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, (714) 373-4573; 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 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. Thurs., Aug. 23, 8 p.m. $12.50. (Encore Aug. 25.)
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.