It’s John Ford versus Frank Capra, Steven Spielberg and William Wellman at the Aero

Henry Fonda, center, as Tom Joad in the 1940 movie "The Grapes of Wrath."
(20th Century Fox)

The shrewd programmers at the American Cinematheque have dreamt up an engaging way to riff off the Oscar-nominated success of “Ford v Ferrari” by putting together a series called “Ford vs. …” that pairs a John Ford film with a similarly themed work by another director.

On Jan. 31, Ford’s “Young Mr. Lincoln” is paired with Frank Capra’s equally political “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.” On Feb. 1, Ford’s action epic “The Searchers” shares the screen with Steven Spielberg’s “Saving Private Ryan.” And on Feb. 2, Ford’s socially conscious “The Grapes of Wrath” screens with William Wellman’s “The Ox-Bow Incident.” Great pairings every one.

“Ford Vs. …"

Where: Aero Theater, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica

When: 7:30 p.m., Jan. 31-Feb. 2

Cost: $12

Info: (310) 260-1528