Hey Los Angelenos!
This weekend The Cinefamily theater is going Superhero crazy. You can check out the whole line-up, including tonight’s shows, right here. But the centerpiece to the weekend is tomorrow’s Superhero Saturday Marathon. And The Cinefamily is offering one lucky Chewer the ultimate prize: free entry for you and a guest, plus a reserved couch. Now, having a front row couch at The Cinefamily is sweet to begin with. For an all day marathon? It is fucking clutch. While everyone else is rubbing their sore asses, you and your buddy/date will be relaxing in motherfucking style.
The event is being co-sponsored by Badass Digest and Meltdown Comics, which means that CHUD veteran Devin Faraci will be there giving away free hugs! *
To enter the contest send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with SUPERHERO in the subject line and tell me what super power you wouldn’t want to have. Don’t procrastinate Chewers. Because of the obvious time-crunch here, I’ll be picking a winner from the first handful of entries I get.
Here is the marathon’s line-up:
Jerry Beck’s History of the Animated Superhero – 1:00pm
Op, Pop, Wham and Bop! Superhero movies are the hottest thing in Hollywood at the moment, so it’s our duty to call upon our resident animation historian, Jerry Beck (Cartoon Brew.com), to trace the cartoon history of animated superheroes. This special program includes everything from the sublime (Max Fleischer’s lush Superman cartoons) to the ridiculous (TV’s minimilist Roger Ramjet), from the depths of obscurity (Ralph Bakshi’s Super Basher) to the superstars of the genre (Space Ghost). Jerry will trace the history of the characters, explain the animators behind them and screen rare 16mm prints. Join us and the Super Six, the Mighty Heroes, Bat Fink, Fearless Fly, Underdog, Super President and much much more! Up, up and away!
The Return of Captain Invincible – 3:00pm-ish
Imagine Superman, Austin Powers and The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert blended together, and you’ll have a handle on this musical comedy about one superhero’s chance at redemption! An always-joyous-to-watch Alan Arkin is the titular hero, an all-American good guy whose career was unjustly ruined by the ’50s Communist hearings, and who now lives in drunken exile in Australia. Drawn back into service when his longtime racist nemesis (played/sung by Christopher Lee) engages in a diabolical world-threatening and tuneful plot, the Captain must face his fears, and learn how to fly again. Written by Die Hard scribe Steven E. de Souza, and featuring songs by Rocky Horror creators Richard O’Brien and Richard Hartley, Return is easily one of the most ambitious narrative films from Aussie director Phillipe Mora (Communion, The Beast Within), and is the kind of cheeky yet affectionate love letter to American culture that only a foreign-born-and-raised filmmaker can create. Director Phillipe Mora will be here in person for a Q&A after the film!
Dir. Phillipe Mora, 1983, 35mm, 96 min.
Abar, The First Black Superman – 5:30pm-ish
One of the only black science fiction films, and clearly a homemade labor of love, Abar is the most positive, family-friendly movie ever made that wishes for the disappearance of the entire white race. This high concept, no-budget, one-of-a-kind obscurity follows a genius black scientist who moves his family into a wealthy white Los Angeles neighborhood, and (surprise!) is confronted with his neighbors’ violent bigotry. Enter a groovily-dressed, tough-as-nails, urban revolutionary named Abar and his motorcycle-riding group of vigilantes, the Black Front of Unity. At first, Abar’s weary of a collabo with the bourgeoisie, but when he finally agrees to try out the scientist’s new potion, he gains far-out infinite mind powers, and the world’s first black Superman is born! Featuring a classic blaxploitation aesthetic juxtaposed with a astute interest in L.A. race relations and economic stratification (the film’s images of vintage Watts are a draw in themselves), Abar isn’t just the first black superman film — it’s also the brainiest and most fun! Abar director Frank Packard and star Tobar Mayo will both be here in person for a Q&A after the film!
Dir. Frank Packard, 1977, 35mm, 90 min.
Hellboy (co-star Doug Jones in person!) – 8:00pm-ish
In the ‘90s, legendary comic book artist Mike Mignola created Hellboy, a wise-crackin’, working class demon who works for a secret organization that deals with all manner of monsters, clockwork Nazi automatons and supernatural creatures. In 2004, auteur director Guillermo del Toro brought Mignola’s comic respectfully to life, with the gutsy choice of casting genre fave/latex prosthetic veteran Ron Perlman in the titular role. In hindsight, this was really the furthest thing from a gamble, for Perlman brings to the film (and its later sequel) an incredible level of warmth, artistry and (ahem!) humanity that’s just as thrilling to watch as Christopher Reeve’s original timeless portrayal of The Man of Steel in the Superman franchise. Seamlessly combining the superhero and horror genres into one tight, entertaining blast, Hellboy also boasts a hell of a supporting cast, featuring Selma Blair, John Hurt, Jeffrey Tambor and a mime-blowing performance from Doug Jones as the loveable Abe Sapien, Hellboy’s “Creature From The Black Lagoon” confidant. So don your devil horns and join us for a screening of one of the best films in the superhero boom of the 21st century! Co-star Doug Jones (“Abe Sapien”) will be here at the Cinefamily for a Q&A after the film!
Dir. Guillermo del Toro, 2004, 35mm, 122 min.
Mondo Superhero! (w/ feature film TBA) – 11:00pm-ish
Co-presented by Everything Is Terrible!
Mommy, what’s a Mondo Mix? Well, Mondo Mixes are Cinefamily’s signature homemade long-form video montages of found footage madness that can blow your mind and put a smile on your face, may or may not be hazardous to your health, renew or destroy your faith in humanity, but just might change your life. We promise. We’re teaming up with Everything Is Terrible!, one of our favorite partners in the known found footage universe, to bring you the most demented international batch of crazed caped crusaders, surreal superheroes and mangled malevolent megaminds in the annals of under- (and over-)ground film history, all in one boombastic blast! After the Mondo Mix, stay tuned for a super-rare, unbelivably strange high-flying feature TBA!
* that hugging part is a lie.