Madeline’s Madeline. A theater director’s latest project takes on a life of its own when her young star (newcomer Helena Howard) takes her performance too seriously. Molly Parker and Miranda July also star for writer/director Josephine Baker. The Frida Cinema, 305 E. Fourth St., Santa Ana; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Sept. 13, 12:30, 5:30 & 7:30 p.m. $7-$10.
Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich. Thomas Lennon, Michael Paré and Charlyne Yi star in Sonny Laguna and Tommy Wiklund’s 2018 horror flick about an evil as old as time:animating puppets that embark on a bloody killing spree. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Sept. 13, 3 & 10:45 p.m. $7-$10.
Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood. Matt Tyrnauer’s documentary is based on the best-selling memoir of Scotty Bowers, a sexual procurer to Hollywood stars and, until now, an unsung legend. Bowers and Tyrnauer participate in an audience Q&A at the first Friday screening. Art Theatre, 2025 E. Fourth St., Long Beach, (562) 438-5435. Thurs., Sept. 13, 5 p.m.; Fri., 6 (with Q&A) & 8:15 p.m.; Mon.-Wed., 6:15 & 8:30 p.m.; Thurs., Sept. 20, 4 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
Moses. Sight & Sound Theatres presents a stage production that was filmed before a live audience. Moses is exiled and insecure before God calls on him to free the Israelites. Live animals, massive sets and spectacular special effects are promised. 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; 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 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., Sept. 13 & 20, 6:30 p.m.; Sat., 12:55 p.m. $12.50.
Alleged Gangster. Andy Pressman wrote, produced, directed and stars in this gritty crime drama that is based on a true story. He plays a mobster who comes out of prison after three years to claw his way to the top of LA’s underworld. Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Thurs., Sept. 13, 7:30 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
Mandy. A broken and haunted man (Nicolas Cage, channeling Nicolas Cage) hunts in the Pacific Northwest wilderness for an unhinged religious sect that slaughtered the love of his life, Mandy (Andrea Riseborough). A Q&A with Cage and director Panos Cosmatos, which was previously recorded at the legendary Egyptian Theatre in Los Angeles, only accompanies the opening-night screening. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Sept. 13, 8 p.m. Sans Q&A: Fri. & Sun.-Thurs., Sept. 20, 1:30, 4:30 & 8 p.m.; Sat., 1:30, 4:30, 8 & 11 p.m. $7-$10.
Perfect Blue. The R-rated 1997 psychological horror anime from Satoshi Kon (Paprika) is about a singer who quits her band to become an actress and shed her good-girl image. However, her fans aren’t ready to see her go, and after she takes on a recurring role on a popular TV show, her handlers and collaborators begin turning up dead. In Japanese with English subtitles. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Thurs., Sept. 13, 9:30 p.m. $7-$10.
1945. In Ferenc Török’s excellent new drama, two strangers arrive at the railway station outside a Hungarian village at 11 a.m. on Aug. 12, 1945. That day was supposed to end with a joyous wedding celebration, but instead it’s capped by tragedy. Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Fri., 3:30 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
Jaws. Steven Spielberg’s 1975 triple-Oscar winner has a police chief (Roy Scheider), an ichthyologist (Richard Dreyfuss) and a grizzled sea captain (Robert Shaw) hunting a great white shark that’s been snacking on a small coastal town’s tourists. Which reminds me: Feel free to frolic in the ocean adjacent to the movie screen. Salt Creek Beach, 33333 S. Pacific Coast Hwy., Dana Point, (949) 923-2280; ocparks.com. Fri., 6 p.m. Free.
Dirty Dancing. The 1987 rom-dram popularized the saying “Nobody puts Baby in a corner.” Baby would be Jennifer Grey, who was stuck moping with her parents in the corner of a Catskills resort’s club before the final dance with instructor Johnny (Patrick Swayze). Eisenhower Park, Main Street and Ocean Avenue, Seal Beach; moviesintheparksb.com. Fri., 7 p.m. Free.
Shin Godzilla. The Japan Foundation of Los Angeles and Outdoor Movie Night at the Source OC continue Japanese Cinema Month with the 31st installment from the Godzilla franchise. Hideaki Anno and Shinji Higuchi’s 2016 kaiju film has Japan plunged into chaos after a skyscraper-sized lizard rises from the sea and lays waste to Tokyo. The Source OC, first-floor Step Plaza, 6940 Beach Blvd., Buena Park, (714) 521-8858; www.thesourceoc.com. Fri., 7 p.m. Free.
Iron Giant. It’s the excellent animated flick about a boy befriending a robot from outer space as the army hunts down the iron giant. Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina, behind Moe B’s Watersports, 1131 Back Bay Dr., Newport Beach, (949) 729-3863. Fri., 7:30 p.m. Free, but there is a fee to park.
Crown and Anchor. The slow-burn Canadian drama is about the lives of a straight-edge young man (Arrow’s Michael Rowe) and his user cousin (Matt Wells) intersecting with violent and tragic consequences. Wells, Rowe and his brother Andrew Rowe, who is making his feature debut, co-wrote the screenplay. The carefully curated track list includes music from such cult punk and hardcore bands as DYS, ho99o9, Gorilla Biscuits, Youth of Today, Johnny Thunders and the Heartbreakers, Project X, Side by Side, and X-Ray Specs. Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Fri., 10:30 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
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.” K.A.O.S. and Midnight Insanity are the live shadow casts in Santa Ana and Long Beach, respectively. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Fri., 11 p.m. $7-$10; also at Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Sat., 11:55 p.m. $8.50-$11.50.
Cambodia Town Film Festival. See Aimee Murillo’s “Cambodia Town Film Festival Returns for a Sixth Year of Amazing Programming.” Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435; cambodiatownfilmfestival.com. Sat., 11 a.m.; Sun., 10:30 a.m. $8-$20, with some free programs.
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy: Extended Edition Marathon. Because the marathon sold out in August, Frida’s bringing it back. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, Peter Jackson’s 2001 adventure-fantasy that launched the franchise, has young Hobbit Frodo (Elijah Wood) being entrusted with an ancient ring—before embarking on an epic quest to destroy it. Up next from 2002 is The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers, in which Frodo and Sam (Sean Astin) edge closer to Mordor as the divided fellowship makes a stand against Sauron’s new ally, Saruman (Christopher Lee), and his hordes of Isengard. In 2003’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Gandalf (Ian McKellan) and Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) lead the World of Men against Sauron’s army to draw his gaze from Frodo and Sam as they approach Mount Doom with the One Ring. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Sat., 11:30 a.m. $15 for all three films.
Dragon Ball Z: Broly. In Tatsuya Nagamine’s new anime, powerful Saiyan warrior Broly has Goku, Vegeta and friends squarely in his sights as they battle for the future of the universe. Dubbed in English from the original Japanese. AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, (714) 769-4288; AMC Tustin Legacy at the District, 2457 Park Ave., Tustin, (714) 258-7036; Cinemark Century Stadium 25, (714) 532-9558; Cinemark Century 20 Huntington Beach, (800) 967-1932; 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, 300 Newport Center Dr., Newport Beach, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; Regal Garden Grove Stadium 16, 9741 Chapman Ave., Garden Grove, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Sat., 12:55 p.m.; Mon., 7 p.m. $12.50.
Celebration of Iranian Cinema at UCI. The Farhang Foundation, in collaboration with UC Irvine’s Jordan Center for Persian Studies and the UCLA Film & Television Archives, present the third-annual celebration of films made in Iran. On Saturday, they are: Valderrama, Abbas Amini’s 2016 drama about a young man who took Carlos Valderrama’s name—because he resembles the soccer star—fighting for survival in Tehran, where he has no family, official identity nor documentation; and No Date, No Signature, Vahid Nariman’s 2017 drama about a coroner who is brought a corpse very familiar to him. Sunday’s screenings: Negar, Rambod Javan’s 2017 action/crime drama about a woman who begins an unconventional investigation after suspecting police are wrong about her father having committed suicide; and Blockage, Mohsen Gharaie’s 2017 drama about a municipal employee wanting to use other people’s money to buy a truck while his wife threatens to abort their child if he does not purchase a house. UCI, Crystal Cove Auditorium, 4113 Pereira Dr., Irvine, (310) 666-1546. Sat.-Sun., 4 & 9 p.m. $12 per film; $75 for all four, plus a VIP reception.
Canelo vs. GGG2. Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin—who are among the most explosive, heavy-handed fighters in any boxing division today—engage in a rematch that is broadcast live from Las Vegas and beamed into theaters nationwide. The battle between the pair, who fought to a controversial 12-round draw in September 2017, is for the Ring middleweight title. AMC Orange 30 at the Outlets, (714) 769-4288; 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, 26602 Towne Center Dr., Foothill Ranch, (949) 588-9402; Edwards Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Sat., 5 p.m. $20.
The Goonies. A group of misfits seek pirate treasure to save their home in Richard Donner’s 1985 take on Chris Columbus and Steven Spielberg’s script. They are so young that you might not recognize Sean Astin, Josh Brolin and Jeff Cohen, but you will recognize Corey Feldman and Martha Plimpton. Newport Dunes Waterfront Resort & Marina, (949) 729-3863. Sat., 7:30 p.m. Free, but there is a fee to park.
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. Hurless Barton Park, 4601 Casa Loma Ave., Yorba Linda, (714) 961-7192. Sat., 8 p.m. Free.
Anime Club. Such animes as Bleach, Naruto, My Hero Academia, Attack on Titan and Sword Art Online are streamed, plus premium prizes from Crunchyroll are doled out during this program aimed at ages 13-17. Cypress Library, 5331 Orange Ave., Cypress, (714) 826-0350. Sun., 10:30 a.m. Free.
Jurassic Park. Universal Studios and Fathom Events present a 25th-anniversary screening of Steven Spielberg’s 1993 sci-fi thriller, which is based on Michael Crichton’s novel. Things go screwy on an island where cloned dinosaurs roam free in a wildlife park, as often happens when humans mess with the laws of nature or Disney doesn’t get its government tax breaks. 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 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. Sun., 2 & 7 p.m.; Tues.-Wed., 7 p.m. (No Wed. shows at Edwards theaters.) $12.50.
Me Facing Life: Cyntoia’s Story. It’s the director’s cut of the documentary about Cyntoia Brown, a sex-trafficking victim who was sentenced to life in prison at the age of 16 for killing a john. Director Dan Birman participates in an audience Q&A and reception afterward, at which business-casual attire is suggested. All proceeds benefit Orange County Women’s Health Project. Port Theater, 2905 E. Coast Hwy., Corona del Mar, (714) 619-8419; ocwomenshealth.org. Sun., 4 p.m. $100-$1,000.
Zero Weeks. The Orange County Civic Engagement Table, Nextgen America, California Work & Family Coalition, ACLU SoCal, Indivisible OC 45, and other organizations host a screening of Ky Dickens’ 2017 documentary about “America’s sick-leave crisis,” followed by a panel discussion. Why? Because Representative Mimi Walters (R-Irvine) recently introduced a bill that claims to expand flexibility for workers, but, according to event organizers, it “would rob employees of their rights under state and local law to earn paid sick days and use them as needed.” Irvine United Congregational Church, 4915 Alton Pkwy., Irvine; iucc.org. Tues., 6:30 p.m. Free.
Sunset Blvd. You are welcome to join Chapman University students enrolled in this semester’s Los Angeles in Film and Fiction class, whose four-film series at the Frida kicks off with Billy Wilder’s 1950 skewering of Tinsel Town. A struggling young screenwriter (William Holden) finds the easy life in the mansion of faded silent-film queen Norma Desmond (Gloria Swanson). The thing is, she’s obsessed with him, stuck in time and totally cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs. The Frida Cinema; thefridacinema.org. Tues., 7 p.m. $7-$10.
La Maestra (The Teacher). Paul Ferraris and Elizabeth Pepin Silva’s half-hour documentary profiles Mayra Agulair, a young teacher in a tiny rural fishing village in Baja, Mexico. In becoming the first Mexican woman surfer in her area, Aguilar inspires her students and other women to take up the sport and follow their dreams. Silva and professor Krista Comer talk about “Surfing Beyond California’s Beach Babe Cliches” in this 2018 Summer Speaker Series event presented by California State Parks and the San Onofre Parks Foundation. Historic Cottage at San Clemente State Beach Campground, 225 Avenida Califia, San Clemente; surfingwomen.eventbrite.com. Wed., 5:30 p.m. (hosted reception and gallery exhibit viewing) and 7 p.m. (film and lecture). $15-$20.
The Dawn Wall. It’s an action-sports documentary on American rock climbers Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson scaling the Dawn Wall (Yosemite’s 3,000-foot face) in 2015. 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. Wed., 7 p.m. $12.50.
Kiki’s Delivery Service. Studio Ghibli anime master Hayao Miyazaki’s beloved coming-of-age story follows a resourceful young witch who uses her broom to create a delivery service, only to lose her gift of flight in a moment of self-doubt. Regency South Coast Village, 1561 W. Sunflower Ave., Santa Ana, (714) 557-5701. Wed., 7:30 p.m. $9.
The Searchers. Western Wednesdays continue with John Ford’s 1956 classic that, in my mind, is John Wayne’s best picture. He plays Ethan Edwards, a menacing Civil War veteran who is either trying to rescue or hunt down his niece (Natalie Wood), who was taken (and, in Ethan’s mind, indoctrinated) by Comanches who wiped out her family. Regency San Juan Capistrano, 26762 Verdugo St., San Juan Capistrano, (949) 661-3456. Wed., 7:30 p.m. $14.
Rudy. The Thursday Matinee film series continues with David Anspaugh’s 1993 sports-history drama about the grueling quest of “5-feet-nothin’, a hundred-and-nothin’-pound” Rudy Ruettiger (Sean Astin) to make the Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team. Snacks and beverages are allowed at this screening, but booze will bring out the penalty flag. Fullerton Public Library, Osborne Auditorium, 353 W. Commonwealth Ave., Fullerton, (714) 738-6327. Thurs., Sept. 20, 1 p.m. Free.
Priced Out: Gentrification in Portland, Oregon. Documentarian Cornelius Swart takes a personal and investigative look at housing discrimination and the pain of losing one’s community as new money moves into ethnic communities and old residents find themselves priced out. It’s certainly not a problem confined to Portland, and to drive home that fact, Emphasize Displacement presents the free screening and talk with Swart and a panel of experts about gentrification in the LBC. Art Theatre, (562) 438-5435. Thurs., Sept. 20, 6:30 p.m. Free.
An American in Paris: The Musical. The Tony Award-winning musical, inspired by the Oscar-winning MGM film, is captured from the stage and broadcast in theaters. It tells the fiery story of true love found in the City of Lights. Directors Cut Cinema at Regency Rancho Niguel, 25471 Rancho Niguel Rd., Laguna Niguel, (949) 831-0446; also at Regency South Coast Village, (714) 557-5701. Thurs., Sept. 20, 7 p.m. $13-$17.
The Penalty. Cal State Fullerton’s Division of Politics, Administration and Justice presents Will Francome and Mark Pizzey’s new documentary on the death penalty, followed by a panel discussion. The film reveals an America in which grieving families, botched executions and wrongful convictions challenge what we think we know about the ultimate punishment. Cal State Fullerton, Humanities 110, 800 N. State College Blvd., Fullerton, (657) 278-2011. Thurs., Sept. 20, 7 p.m. Free.
Digimon Adventure tri.: Future. The climactic finale has the suffering DigiDestined standing together to save their friends and the Real World, which may be swept up by the Digital World. Dubbed in English from the anime’s original Japanese. 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 Irvine Spectrum 21, (844) 462-7342; Edwards Long Beach Stadium 26, (844) 462-7342; www.fathomevents.com. Thurs., Sept. 20, 7:30 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.