Terrible Advice [Special Screenings, Feb. 1-8]

The Big Sick
Photo courtesy Apatow Productions

The Shape of Water. The Frida Cinema’s six-film Guillermo del Toro retrospective built to the engagement of his newest film, which received 13 Oscar nominations (including Best Picture and Best Director). Elisa (Sally Hawkins, who is up for Best Actress) and Zelda (Octavia Spencer, who was nominated for Best Supporting Actress) work as cleaning ladies in a hidden, high-security government laboratory in 1962 Baltimore. They discover a classified secret: a mysterious, scaled aquatic creature that lives in a water tank. Elisa, who is mute, develops a bond with the creature, whose fate is in the hands of a hostile government agent and a marine biologist. Doug Jones, Michael Shannon, Michael Stuhlbarg and Best Supporting Actor nominee Richard Jenkins co-star. The Frida Cinema, 305 E. Fourth St., Santa Ana; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Feb. 1, 12:30, 2:30, 5, 7:30 & 9:50 p.m. $7-$10.

70 Acres in Chicago. The UC Irvine Chancellor’s Arts and Culture Initiative, the Department of Urban Planning and Public Policy, and the Architecture and Urban Studies Research Cluster present a free screening of the award-winning documentary about Chicago’s Cabrini Green housing project. Over the course of 20 years, director Ronit Bezalel captured the upheaval that began with the clearing out of black families and the razing of the first buildings through the clashes that followed a decade later in what became mixed-income neighborhoods. Bezalel participates in a post-screening discussion with three UCI experts: Andrew Highsmith of the History Department and Virginia Parks and Rodolfo Torres, both of Planning and Public Policy. A reception follows. UCI, Humanities Gateway 1070, McCormick Screening Room, Campus and West Peltason drives, Irvine, (949) 824-6117. Thurs., Feb. 1, 4 p.m. Free.

Crimson Peak. Frida’s monthlong Guillermo del Toro retrospective closes with his 2015 ghost story set in the Victorian era, when young woman Edith (Mia Wasikowska) is haunted by visions of her deceased mother, who warns, “Beware of Crimson Peak.” Edith marries the charming and seductive Sir Thomas Sharpe (Tom Hiddleston), who takes her to a gothic castle called—what else?—Crimson Peak! Also living there is Tommy’s alluring and mysterious sister Lady Lucille (Jessica Chastain), who has secrets she does not want Edith to expose. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Feb. 1, 5:30 & 8 p.m. $7-$10.

Holy Week. Each year, an interfaith group of anti-war activists spend a week walking, protesting and building community during what is known as the Nevada Desert Experience. In 2016, filmmaker Seamus James Knight captured the Sacred Peace Walk. Chapman University, Argyros Forum 209A, Schoolsfirst Federal Credit Union Conference Suite, 1 University Dr., Orange; events.chapman.edu. Thurs., Feb. 1, 7 p.m. Free.

 

Chavela
Photo courtesy Aubin Films

 

Spettacolo. Italian Movie Night presents this documentary on a tiny hill town in Tuscany where, half a century ago, villagers began confronting their issues through a play staged every summer in the piazza, where residents of all ages played a part. Teatro Povero di Monticchiello drew worldwide attention, but an aging population and new generations more into Facebook caused recent interest to wane. Co-directors Jeff Malmberg and Chris Shellen focus on the 50th anniversary production, which may be the last. The play’s subject matter is therefore fitting: the end of the world. Regency San Juan Capistrano, 26762 Verdugo St., San Juan Capistrano, (949) 661-3456. Thurs., Feb. 1, 7 p.m. Call for ticket price.

Digimon Adventure tri: Loss. After the “reboot” and Meicoomon’s rampage, Tai and friends arrive in the Digital World, where they reunite with Digimon. But all have lost their memories except Meicoomon, who suddenly appears, then disappears. Meanwhile, in the real world, Nishijima receives word that Himekawa has gone missing and, upon further investigation, determines there’s been some hidden agenda behind her behavior. 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, (714) 373-4573; Cinemark at the Pike Theaters, 99 S. Pine Ave., Long Beach, (800) 967-1932; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, 26701 Aliso Creek Rd., Aliso Viejo, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, 65 Fortune Dr., Irvine, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, 7501 E. Carson, Long Beach, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Thurs., Feb. 1, 7:30 p.m. $12.50.

Panoramas. It’s an introspective look at Zoé, the acclaimed Latin Grammy Award-winning Mexican rock band from Mexico City. The rockumentary focuses on a two-year period that represented the band’s longest international tour and their first big shot at becoming known outside of México. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Feb. 1, 8 p.m. $7-$10.

Groundhog Day. What else would Frida screen on Groundhog Day? Director Harold Ramis gave us Caddyshack, Stripes and Ghostbusters, but this is arguably his best film. Snarky TV weatherman Phil (Bill Murray) hates the annual assignment that takes him to Punxsutawney to see if a groundhog emerges from his hole. The alarm clock at the B&B where Phil sleeps before the big day goes off with Sonny and Cher’s “I’ve Got You Babe” blaring from the radio. Phil then trudges through town with a bad attitude until the next morning, when “I’ve Got You Babe” awakens him in the same B&B again, as it does the next morning and the next and . . . you get the idea. Will Phil end the endless loop? The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri., 7:30 p.m. $7-$10.

Friday
Photo courtesy New Line Cinema

Friday. What else would Frida screen on Friday? (And in the OC Weekly Friday Night Freakouts’ slot, no less.) Craig (Ice Cube) gets fired on his day off, so he spends it with his buddy Smokey (Chris Tucker) to avoid his father (John Witherspoon), who wants him to find a new job immediately. Meanwhile, Smokey must come up with $200 to cover marijuana he was supposed to sell for dealer Big Worm (Faizon Love) but that he smoked instead. Oh, and neighborhood bully Deebo (Tom “Tiny” Lister Jr.) wants Craig’s head. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri., 11 p.m. $7-$10.

Chavela. Catherine Gund and Daresha Kyi’s documentary is about Mexican ranchera legend Chavela Vargas, an LGBTQ icon whose praises are sung by Pedro Almodóvar, Elena Benarroch and Miguel Bosé. Born in Costa Rica in 1919, Vargas ran away to Mexico City as a teenager to sing in the streets. By the 1950s, she became a household name in her adopted country, delivering her performances with a raw passion and unique voice. Also a bold, rebellious, sexual pioneer, she was known for having many female lovers at a time when being out in Mexico was dangerous. Art Theatre, 2025 E. Fourth St., Long Beach, (562) 438-5435. Sat.-Sun., 11 a.m. $8.50-$11.50.

LUNAFEST. In 2000, LUNA Bar created the traveling film festival that next arrives in Orange, where Zonta Club of Newport Harbor hosts a pre-screening VIP reception with food, drink, a silent auction, opportunity drawings and a wine pull. Then, a panel discussion is held with several of the women directors from the nine compelling short films (by, for and about women) that follow. All proceeds benefit female film students at Chapman University as they pursue careers in a male-dominated field. Chapman University, Dodge College of Film and Media Arts, 283 N. Cypress St., Orange, (714) 516-5480. Sat., reception, 1:30 p.m.; panel, 2:30 p.m. $40.

Cardcaptor Sakura: The Sealed Card
Photo courtesy of Geneon

Cardcaptor Sakura: The Sealed Card. Crunchyroll at the Frida Cinema returns with the U.S. theatrical debut of this classic, award-winning anime adventure. The feature-film finale to the Japanese television series Cardcaptor Sakura was a Madhouse adaptation of a popular manga and created by the all-female artist group Clamp. Their story follows elementary-school student Sakura Kinomoto, who discovers she possesses magical powers after accidentally freeing a set of cards from a book that had been sealed for years. She is then tasked with retrieving those magical cards to avoid an unknown catastrophe from befalling the world. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sat., 2 p.m.; Sun., 11:30 a.m. & 7 p.m. $10.

Get Out. Rather than focus on one director for a February retrospective, Frida presents the works of four in honor of Black History Month. That includes first-time director Jordan Peele, whose Get Out was the best reviewed film of 2017 and also scored Academy Award nominations for Best Picture, Best Director and Original Screenplay (Peele), and Best Actor (Daniel Kaluuya). He plays Chris, a young black photographer invited by his white girlfriend Rose (Allison Williams) to meet her parents. Chris gets nervous when he finds out Rose did not disclose she was bringing home an African-American, but her family proves to be overaccommodating—at first. As the weekend progresses, Chris makes increasingly disturbing discoveries about the family, their friends and his lady. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sat., 4:30 & 7 p.m.; Sun., 5:15 p.m.; Tues.-Wed., 12:15, 5:15, 7:30 & 9:40 p.m. $7-$10; also at Fullerton Main Library, 353 W. Commonwealth Ave., Fullerton, (714) 738-6327. Thurs., Feb. 8, 1 p.m. Free.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Midnight Insanity shadow casts the midnight movie that 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.” Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Sat., 11:55 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.

Bolshoi Ballet: The Lady of the Camellias. The Russian dance troupe’s Dec. 6, 2015, performance is beamed into theaters in a nationwide simulcast. Featured are John Neumeier’s choreography, Chopin’s romantic piano score and a story from an Alexandre Dumas fils’ novel. At a theater performance of Manon Lescaut, the young and naive Armand (Edvin Revazov) is utterly captivated after meeting the ravishing and most desirable courtesan Marguerite Gautier (Svetlana Zakharova). Their encounter gives birth to a passionate yet doomed love. AMC Downtown Disney, 1565 Disneyland Dr., Anaheim, (714) 776-2355; AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, (714) 769-4288; Cinemark Century Stadium 25, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, (714) 373-4573; Edwards Aliso Viejo Stadium 20, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com; also at Regency Directors Cut Cinema at Rancho Niguel, 25471 Rancho Niguel Rd., Laguna Niguel, (949) 831-0446; and Regency South Coast Village, 1561 Sunflower Ave., Santa Ana, (714) 557-5701. Sun., 12:55 p.m. $18.

Gagarin: First in Space
Photo courtesy Kremlin Films

Gagarin: First in Space. UC Irvine’s European Languages and Studies’ Russian Film Series continues with Pavel Parkhomeko’s 2013 biopic on Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin (Yaroslav Zhalnin). You’ll follow his rise from childhood poverty to his selection and training for the 1961 Vostok mission. UCI, Humanities Instructional Building 208, Irvine, (949) 824-6117. Tues., 5 p.m. Free.

The Big Sick. The real-life coupling of standup comic Kumail Nanjiani and comedy writer/producer Emily V. Gordon, who received an Oscar nomination for their original screenplay, is depicted in Michael Showalter’s rom-com-dram. Pakistan-born comic Kumail (Nanjiani) and graduate student Emily (Zoe Kazan) fall for each other, then breakup just before she contracts a mysterious and deadly illness. He stands vigil at her hospital bedside alongside her parents (Holly Hunter and Ray Romano), who are icy toward him because he broke their daughter’s heart. Meanwhile, his parents (Zenobia Sheriff and Anupam Kher) have no idea he’s in love with a white American girl, expecting their son to enter an arranged marriage with a Pakistani woman—any Pakistani woman. Presenter FPL Arthouse warns parents the film is rated R. Fullerton Main Library, (714) 738-6327. Wed., 6 p.m. Free.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Chris Columbus directed the 2002 franchise flick that has Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) haunted by a strange voice as he returns to a Hogwarts plagued by mysterious attacks. Regency South Coast Village, (714) 557-5701. Wed. Call for show time. $9.

Everything Is Terrible!’s T H E G R E A T S A T A N. Found footage collective Everything Is Terrible! and longtime collaborator Lucifer digested more than 2,000 satanic panic, religious kook and D-horror VHS tapes to create the live, all-new, multimedia show that is presented “in the melting flesh.” And to think the Art’s clean-up crew once damned chewed gum under the seats! Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Wed., 8 p.m. $14.

Poverty, Inc.
Photo courtesy Acton Institute

Poverty, Inc. Hope International, a nonprofit composed of Christ followers who fight global poverty, hosts a screening of this award-winning documentary that casts a critical eye on the rise of the West’s multibillion-dollar poverty industry. From TOMs Shoes to international adoptions, the film asks the uncomfortable question “Could I be part of the problem?” There is a post-screening discussion about that and Hope International’s work in Haiti, which a certain U.S. president recently referred to as a “shithole.” We Work Office, 200 Spectrum Center Dr., Irvine; www.hopeinternational.org. Thurs., Feb. 8, 6:30 p.m. Free.

Miracle. To mark the start of the Winter Olympics, the Violent Gentlemen Hockey Club hosts a screening of Gavin O’Connor’s 2004 bio-drama starring Kurt Russell as Herb Brooks, the coach of the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team that won gold by beating the seemingly invincible Russians in what became known as “the miracle on ice.” Each ticket holder gets an exclusive Violent Gentlemen X Oxford pennant, and items from the “For Love of Country” Olympic collection are available for purchase. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Feb. 8, 7 p.m. $10.

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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