Elvis is in the building.
The American Cinematheque's Mods & Rockers festival celebrates the life and legacy of the King with a six-day tribute featuring several of Presley's most successful films, plus the 2005 CBS miniseries "Elvis" and two documentaries.
The retrospective swivels into the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood tonight with the first film he made after his stint in the Army, 1960's "G.I. Blues." Presley plays a young soldier stationed in Germany — as the singer himself was — who falls for a cabaret performer (Juliet Prowse). Along the way he sings the catchy title tune, as well as "Blue Suede Shoes" and "Wooden Heart."
Screening with the musical is the 2002 documentary "Elvis and June: A Love Story," chronicling Elvis' romance in 1955 with a 17-year-old Biloxi beauty queen.
Presley goes dramatic with decent results in Don Siegel's 1960 western "Flaming Star," showing Friday. He plays the son of a white father (John McIntire) and a Kiowa mother (Dolores Del Rio) who finds himself caught in the middle when hostilities break out between the whites and Indians. Barbara Eden is also in the cast.
Also on the Friday bill is Presley's first film, the tepid 1956 western "Love Me Tender." It was the only time Presley didn't receive top billing. Richard Egan and Debra Paget headline this tale of three Confederate brothers who return home after the war. Because Egan's character had been mistakenly reported dead, his girlfriend (Paget) marries his youngest brother (Presley), who didn't go to war.
The Presley tribute continues Saturday afternoon with the 2005 Emmy-nominated miniseries, "Elvis," starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers in his Golden Globe-winning performance.
That evening, the Cinematheque presents what some critics consider Presley's best musical, 1957's "Jailhouse Rock." Here he plays an angry young man who, after serving a term in prison for manslaughter, becomes a rock 'n' roll sensation and treats those around him like dirt. Presley sings the title tune, "Baby I Don't Care" and "Treat Me Nice," among others.
Just before he went into the Army, Presley made the gritty 1958 drama "King Creole," directed by Michael Curtiz of "Casablanca" fame. In this film, which also is being shown Saturday night, Presley plays a New Orleans bad boy singer who is pressured by a mobster (Walter Matthau) to sign an exclusive contract with him.
"Viva Las Vegas," screening Wednesday, was the last decent musical Presley made in the 1960s. Released in 1964, it's a breezy musical comedy directed by veteran George Sidney. Presley and costar Ann-Margret light up the screen as a romantic couple, and the musical numbers, including the title tune, are infectious. Following "Viva" is the new documentary "Altered by Elvis," about people whose lives he affected.
It's by design The Art Directors Guild Film Society is presenting a free screening Sunday afternoon at the Directors Guild of America theater of the 1949 adaptation of Ayn Rand's "The Fountainhead," as part of a tribute to the career of the movie's Oscar-winning production designer, Edward Carrere.
Gary Cooper stars as the idealistic architect Howard Roark, who refuses to compromise; Patricia Neal is the woman he loves. Rand adapted the screenplay from her novel; her caveat in doing so was that nothing could be changed without her consent. King Vidor directed. Ironically, Carrere's sets didn't meet with approval from the architectural critics of the day.
Water-powered "Chinatown," one of the seminal films of the 1970s, screens Monday at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills as part of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science's "Great to Be Nominated" series. It was nominated for 11 Oscars but lost the 1974 best picture honors to "The Godfather: Part II."
The film noir mystery, set in Los Angeles in the 1930s, finds everyone involved at the peak of their talents, including stars Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway, director Roman Polanski, screenwriter Robert Towne (who won the Academy Award), cinematographer John A. Alonzo and composer Jerry Goldsmith.
Scheduled to participate in a panel discussion after the movie are Towne, art director W. Stewart Campbell, casting director Mike Fenton, assistant director Hawk Koch and cast members Burt Young, Bruce Glover and James Hong.
Ray's 'Apu Trilogy'The film department of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art screens the second and third installments in Satyajit Ray's landmark "The Apu Trilogy" this weekend.
Scheduled for Friday is "Aparajito," released in 1957, which continues the story of Apu and his mother from the time he is 10 until he prepares for college and life in Calcutta. Restored by the Academy Film Archive, "Aparajito" won the Golden Lion Award at the Venice Film Festival.
The final installment, "The World of Apu," released in 1959, screens Saturday. Soumitra Chatterji plays the adult Apu.
Mods & Rockers: Elvis
"G.I. Blues" and "Elvis and June: A Love Story": 7:30 p.m. today
"Flaming Star" and "Love Me Tender": 7:30 p.m. Friday
"Elvis": 4 p.m. Saturday "Jailhouse Rock" and "King Creole": 8:30 p.m. Saturday
"Viva Las Vegas" and "Altered by Elvis": 7:30 p.m. Wednesday
Where: Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood
Info: (323) 466-3456
Art Directors Guild
"The Fountainhead": 2:30 p.m. Sunday
Where: Directors Guild Theater, 7920 Sunset Blvd., L.A.
Info: (818) 762-9995
Great to Be Nominated
"Chinatown": 6:30 p.m. Monday
Where: Samuel Goldwyn Theater, 8949 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills
Info: (310) 247-3000
"Aparajito": 7:30 p.m. Friday
"The World of Apu": 7:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: 5905 Wilshire Blvd., L.A.
Info: (323) 857-6000Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun