The films of Sidney Poitier will be showcased in a free outdoor film series running Fridays through Aug. 17 in Clifton Park, at the band shell off St. Lo Drive. Tonight's kick-off film is Norman Jewison's Oscar-winning In the Heat of the Night (1967), with Poitier as a Philadelphia detective confronting bigotry and condescension while investigating a murder case in a small Southern town. The festivities begin at 8:30 p.m. Sponsored by Meridian Homes, the Coldstream-Homestead-Montebello Corp, Civic Works and the Baltimore Department of Recreation and Parks. Information: 410-366-2222.
A series of free family films, shown outdoors on the Johns Hopkins University campus, continues tonight with Anthony Hopkins in The World's Fastest Indian, the story of New Zealander Burt Munro and his quest to set a land-speed record using a reconfigured 40-year-old motorcycle. Movies are shown on a screen set up in front of Gilman Hall on the campus, 3400 N. Charles St. The festivities, including live music from Fools & Horses, begin at 7:30 p.m. In case of rain, the movie will be shown inside Shriver Auditorium. Information: www.jhu.edu/summer/films/movies.htm or 410-516-4548.
Also showing outdoors in the coming week:
Marisa Tomei and Robert Downey Jr. in Norman Jewison's Only You (1994), 9 p.m. tonight at High and Stiles streets, part of the 2007 Little Italy Open-Air Film Festival. Information: littleitalyrestaurants.com.
Tobey Maguire, Jeff Bridges and Chris Cooper in Gary Ross' Seabiscuit (2003), 9 p.m. Thursday at the American Visionary Arts Museum, 800 Key Highway, part of the Flicks From the Hill series. Movies are visible from Federal Hill. Information: avam.org or 410-244-1900.
Robert Siodmak's Criss Cross (1949), starring Burt Lancaster as a romantic sap who doesn't realize his ex-wife, Anna (Yvonne DeCarlo), is always going to be trouble, is this weekend's entry in the summer-long film noir revival series at The Charles, 1711 N. Charles St. Showtime is noon tomorrow, with encores set for 7 p.m. Monday and 9 p.m. Thursday. Admission is $6 tomorrow, $8 other times. Information: 410-727-FILM or thecharles.com.
Vittorio de Sica's classic of Italian neo-realism, Bicycle Thieves (long known in this country as The Bicycle Thief), will be the subject of this month's Filmtalk at the Enoch Pratt Free Library. The film centers on a father whose post-war livelihood is threatened when someone steals his bicycle, but that's like saying Casablanca is just about a gal who walks into a bar owned by her ex-boyfriend. There's much more to it. Showtime is 10 a.m. tomorrow in the Wheeler Auditorium of the Pratt's main library, 400 Cathedral St. Information: 410-396-5487 or prattlibrary. org.
If any day this year is appropriate for showing Friday the 13th, this is it; for those of you who have never seen this progenitor of the modern slasher film on the big screen, here's your chance. Director Sean S. Cunningham's ode to teen slaughter, the film that introduced Jason Vorhees to the world and has (so far) led to about a billion sequels, is being screened tonight as part of the "Totally Awesome! Films of the 1980s" series at the American Film Institute's Silver Theatre, 8633 Colesville Road in Silver Spring. Showtimes are 10 p.m. and midnight. Information: afi.com/silver/new or 301-495-6720.
"Film Baltimore," a series of films shot in and about Baltimore, continues Thursday with Jay Russell's Ladder 49, starring Joaquin Phoenix and John Travolta as city firefighters struggling to balance their jobs with their personal lives. Shot in and around the city in spring and summer 2003, the film features spectacular firefighting sequences and lots of easily recognizable local scenery. Showtime is 8 p.m. in the Performing Arts Theatre of the University of Baltimore student center, 21 W. Mount Royal Ave. Tickets are $5. Information: ubalt.edu.