Seventh Annual Greatest Cartoons Ever A fine selection of cartoon shorts including “Robin Hood Daffy,” “Mickey’s Fire Brigade,” “Plumbing is a Pipe,” with Popeye and Olive Oyl, Max Fleischer’s Superman ‘toon, “The Magnetic Telescope,” “Horton Hatches the Egg,” and many more classics from the 1930s, ‘40s, and ‘50s. Alex Film Society, Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale, (818) 243-2539. Dec. 26, 2 and 7 p.m. $12 for advance tickets; walk-up, day of tickets, $16. alexfilmsociety.org/
Poseidon Adventure Double Feature In The Poseidon Adventure (1972), a luxury liner capsizes just after the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve when hit by a titanic-sized seismic wave. It was the disaster movie that helped launch a decade’s worth of disaster movies, and it’s chockablock with memorable moments, especially from Gene Hackman as the Messianic minister who leads a small group of survivors and Oscar nominee Shelley Winters as a grandmother with chutzpah who shows up all the jerks who hurl “fat lady” insults. With Ernest Borgnine, Red Buttons and Stella Stevens. Producer Irwin Allen became known as the “master of disaster” and directed 1979’s Beyond the Poseidon Adventure himself, to ill-effect, despite a crack cast that included Sally Field, Jack Warden, Peter Boyle, Shirley Jones and Slim Pickens. New Beverly Cinema, 7165 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, (323) 938-4038. Dec. 27-28, 7:30 p.m. $8. thenewbev.com
Screwball Comedy Classics This four-day series of double features, a must-do for fans of classic screwball comedy, opens with two of director Ernst Lubitsch’s gems, the English manor-set Cluny Brown (1946) with Jennifer Jones, Charles Boyer and Peter Lawford, and Trouble in Paradise (1932) with Miriam Hopkins and Herbert Marshall as a pair of glamorous grifters. Next are director Howard Hawks’ newspaper classic, His Girl Friday (1940), with Rosalind Russell and Cary Grant as the fast-talking journalists, and Ball of Fire (1941), with Barbara Stanwyck as the sexy burlesque artist who schools a square professor (Gary Cooper) on the finer points of slang, see? Two starring the queen of screwball comedy, Carole Lombard, who died too young in a plane crash at age 33, screen Dec. 30. Hawks’ Twentieth Century (1934) is the film that truly uncovered Lombard’s comedic genius. She is perfectly paired with John Barrymore as a self-important producer. Lombard and Barrymore teamed again for the 1937 courtroom comedy True Confession. The series concludes with two of the Marx Bros. most famous films, Horse Feathers (1932) and Animal Crackers (1930). American Cinematheque, Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica, (310) 260-1528 www.americancinemathequecalendar.com/ Dec. 28-30, Jan. 1. All the double features will begin at 7:30 p.m. except for the Jan. 1 Marx Bros. double, which will begin at 3 p.m. $12; $8 for Cinematheque members.
Laemmle’s Anniversary Classics Based on Jacqueline Susann’s must-read novel for people who don’t read (think “Fifty Shades of Grey” circa 1966), the 1967 film Valley of the Dolls, starring Patty Duke, Barbara Parkins and Sharon Tate, was panned upon release and became a cult classic. The film is an interesting time capsule and a fascinating look at certain women’s issues that weren’t explored in American films of the time. Duke is potent as the truly gifted Judy Garland-inspired Neely O’Hara, and Tate gives a moving performance as an untalented but resilient actress forced to trade on her looks. Ahrya Fine Arts, 8556 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, (310) 478-3836. Dec. 28, 7:30 p.m. $13. www.laemmle.com
Mary Poppins Julie Andrews won an Oscar in her feature film debut as the lovely, inventive, firm yet loving nanny who brings efficiency and magic to the London home of the Banks family in director Robert Stevenson’s 1964 adaptation of P. L. Travers’ Poppins books. Dick Van Dyke is wonderful as Mary’s cockney-accented, chimney sweeping friend Bert, who sings the Oscar-winning song, “Chim Chim Cher-ee.” One of Walt Disney’s favorites, the film remains an enchanting pleasure. New Beverly Cinema, 7165 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, (323) 938-4038. Dec. 30 and 31, 2 p.m. $6. thenewbev.com