The Moviegoer: July 9-15

George Kennedy, left, and Paul Newman in the 1967 film "Cool Hand Luke."
(L.A Times file photo)

The Cat That Changed America There is probably more than one lonely heart living a solitary life in the Hollywood Hills, and maybe more than a few sporting authority-ordered GPS homing devices, but none so famous as the magnificent Griffith Park mountain lion, P-22, featured in this in new 2017 documentary. While the giant cat spends his days and nights eating venison, and visiting the Hollywood sign, Forest Lawn, and even the L.A. Zoo, he is cut off from other mountain lions and potential mates by two freeways. However, P-22 has team of human advocates trying to raise funds for a land bridge which would cross the 101 freeway enabling pumas and other wildlife to traverse safely. The screening will be followed by a discussion with the filmmakers and wildlife experts. Pasadena Senior Center Auditorium, 85 E. Holly St., Pasadena. July 13, 7:30 p.m. Free.

Cool Hand Luke: 50th Anniversary Paul Newman stars in the title role as an anti-hero sentenced to two years on a Florida chain-gang for destruction of public property. Luke butts heads with both prison authorities and Dragline (George Kennedy, in an Oscar-winning role), the top dog among the prisoners, eventually gaining their respect the sadistic wrath of the prison brass. Imbued with biblical imagery, many consider Luke’s struggle for independence and freedom a Christ-like odyssey. And though the film is set in the 1950s, it remains one of the great counterculture movies of the late ’60s. Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale. (818) 243-2539. July 13, 7:30 p.m. $16; $12 for seniors (65+) and full-time students; $11 for Alex Film Society members.

Pershing Square Friday Night Flicks Unlike many of the popular outdoor summer movie programs, this annual downtown series hosted by the Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks is free, and this year, a little edgy. Eschewing family favorites and sing-along musicals, selections feature some of our collective dystopian nightmares: aliens, vampires, zombies, clones, demons, and an apocalypse or two with movie mega-heroes like Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Samuel L. Jackson battling for humanity. The series kicks off with Cruise and Emily Blunt in Edge of Tomorrow (2014) and continues every Friday through August. 18. Pershing Square, 532 S. Olive St., Los Angeles. Movies start at sundown. Free.

Rated X: Not For Children The late 1980s saw a resurgence in the popularity of films delighting American audiences’ thirst for challenging fare and befuddling the MPAA ratings board, leading the organization to replace the scarlet X with the more respectable sounding NC-17 in 1990. The American Cinematheque begins their “Not for Children” series with two of 1989’s best black comedies: Spanish director Pedro Almodovar’s sexy but violent Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! and Welsh director Peter Greenaway’s The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover (the “wife” played by the divine Helen Mirren). Other films in the series include John Waters’ “Female Trouble” (1974), John Schlesinger’s “Midnight Cowboy” (1969), David Lynch’s “Wild at Heart” (1990) and Bernardo Bertolucci’s “Last Tango in Paris” (1973). (And strictly speaking, not all of the films are or were rated X or NC-17.) Aero Theatre, 1328 Montana Ave., Santa Monica. “Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!” and “The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover,” July 13, 7:30 p.m. The series continues through July at both the Aero and the Egyptian in Hollywood.


Throwback Thursdays: Killer Blondes This weekly series focuses on the classic 20th century femme fatale. Gorgeous? Check. Nefarious? Indeed. Blonde? Of course. Sure, it’s a trope, but in the films represented, it’s done to perfection. In director Billy Wilder’s 1944 Double Indemnity, Barbara Stanwyck stars as the icy, amoral vamp. With a script by Wilder and Raymond Chandler based on a story by James M. Cain, what could be more noir? Other films in the series include “To Die For” (1995) and “Vertigo” (1958). Laemmle Noho 7, 5240 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood. $9; $6 for seniors 62+. “Double Indemnity,” July 13, 7:30 p.m.

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