By AMY NICHOLSON
By ALAN SCHERSTUHL
By CAROLINA DEL BUSTO
By AMY NICHOLSON
By STEPHANIE ZACHAREK
By R. Scott Moxley
Singin' In the Rain.Frequently rated one of the best American films ever made, Singin' In the Rain is a romantic musical that uses the difficulties Hollywood suffered as it transitioned from silent cinema to "talkies" as a backdrop. Featuring one of cinema's greatest hoofers, Gene Kelly, along with Debbie Reynolds and Donald O'Connor (as the comic sidekick), this is a film that benefits greatly from a big-screen projection, where all that MGM color and fancy footwork can be fully appreciated. Guests will watch the the film projected against the side of Segerstrom Hall and can bring blankets, chairs and picnic fixin's, provided you don't set up on the community plaza before 5:30 p.m. Community Plaza at the Orange County Performing Arts Center, 600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa, (714) 556-2787; www.ocpac.org . Mon., 8:30 p.m. Free.
The Way Things Go.Inside a warehouse, artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss build an enormous, precarious structure 100 feet long made from common househould items. Then, with fire, water, gravity and chemistry, they create a spectacular chain reaction, a self-destructing performance of physical interactions, chemical reactions, and precisely crafted chaos worthy of Rube Goldberg and Alfred Hitchcock. Also being screened is Survival Research Laboratories: Ten Years of Robotic Mayhem, a documentary on industrial pranksters/performance artists Survival Research Laboratory. Irvine Fine Arts Center, 14321 Yale Ave., Irvine, (949) 724-6880. Tues., 7 p.m. Free.
West Side Story.This retelling of the classic Romeo and Juliet story sets the tale of the star-crossed lovers in 1950s New York. Can caucasian Tony and Puerto Rican Maria overcome the prejudices of their gangster peers and enjoy a lasting relationship? Have you seen Romeo and Juliet? Then I don't need to tell you the ending. One of the greatest filmed musicals, with a score by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, West Side Story even shares a connection with cult-classic television show Twin Peaks, featuring both Richard Beymer and Russ Tamblyn in lead roles. Bring a blanket and some warm clothes for this outdoor, beachside screening. Granada Beach (look for the large movie screen), Long Beach. Tues., 7 p.m. Free.
The Wizard of Oz.American classic that for some reason reeks of creepy. Perhaps it's the whole "bad trip" aspect of the plot, with some of the most hallucinogenic imagery to come out of mainstream Hollywood. Perhaps its those unshakable rumors about the Munchkin that committed suicide on the set (not true, by the way). But there's something deeply unsettling about this movie in all the best ways. This film is being screened on the side of the Fox Theater, so if you like, you can bring your headphones and listen to Dark Side of the Moon while it's playing. Bring your own chair and dress warmly. The Fox Theatre, 512 N. Harbor Blvd., Fullerton, (714) 870-0069; www.foxfullerton.org. Thurs., Aug. 2, 8 p.m. Free, but donations accepted.
Mail your press releases (and a videotape or disc, if available) to Special Screenings,OC Weekly, 1666 N. Main St., Ste. 500, Santa Ana, CA 92701-7417. Or send e-mail to email@example.com . All materials must be received at least two weeks before the screening.
Join My Voice Nation for free stuff, film info & more!