[Special Screenings] Local Screenings of 'Scarface: The Shame of a Nation,' 'Blade Runner,' More

Movie of the Week:

Scarface: The Shame of a Nation
Paul Muni ignites the screen as an Al Capone-style mobster in the most powerful of all the 1930s crime dramas. Ann Dvorak is unforgettable as his sister; George Raft and Boris Karloff deliver star performances in this exciting film from legendary director Howard Hawks. Long Beach School for Adults, 3701 E. Willow St., Long Beach, (562) 997-8000. Fri., 7 p.m. $1 materials fee.

Also Showing:

Blade Runner: The Final Cut

When Ridley Scott's prescient Blade Runner was released in American theaters in 1982, the struggle over control of its final cut was already legendary. The studio didn't know what to make of Scott's preferred version, finding it dark, confusing and terrifyingly uncommercial. The studio won and tacked on a voice-over and a quick happy ending. The theatrical release was compromised, and Scott's complete directorial vision would have to wait 25 years to be seen by the public. Last year, Scott re-edited the film, inserting additional footage and improving on his previous director's cut, released in 1992. The profound and poetic film, in any of its incarnations, remains one of the classic American pictures of the 20th century. The Bay Theatre, 340 Main St., Seal Beach, (562) 431-9988; www.baytheatre.com. Fri., 10:15 p.m.; Sun., 6 p.m.; Mon. & Wed., 8 p.m. $5-$8.

Roman Polanski's tribute to noir concerns corruption and water rights in '30s Los Angeles. Frequently considered one of the greatest American films of the '70s. Lucille Keuhn Auditorium, Room 100, Humanities Instructional Building, UC Irvine, Campus & W. Peltason drs., Irvine, (949) 824-5493; summer.uci.edu. Thurs., July 3, 7:30 p.m. Free.

The Emperor of China
The first documentary footage of Qin Shi Huang's life-size Terra Cotta Army, constructed 2,200 years ago for his tomb. The imperial system he created has endured for thousands of years, proving to be the world's most durable political structure. Bowers Museum of Cultural Art, 2002 N. Main St., Santa Ana, (714) 567-3600; www.bowers.org. Fri., 6:30 p.m. Free with admission ($9-$12).

Happy Feet
Penguins discover the thrill of rhythm in this animated family film. Bring chairs and blankets for this outdoor beach screening.Newport Dunes Resort Beach, 1131 Back Bay Dr., Newport Beach, (949) 729-3863; www.newportdunes.com. Fri., dusk. Parking, $10.

A gourmand rat helps his human friend achieve culinary stardom in this animated family film, screened on the beach. Newport Dunes Resort Beach, 1131 Back Bay Dr., Newport Beach, (949) 729-3863; www.newportdunes.com. Sat., dusk. Parking, $10.

The first feature-length documentary to capture the breadth and vitality of America's religious-environmental movement. Church of the Foothills, UCC/DOC, 19211 Dodge Ave., Santa Ana; www.progressivechristiansuniting.org. Fri., 6:30 p.m. Free.

Mel Brooks' parody of the Star Wars series. Regency Rancho Niguel, 25471 Rancho Niguel Rd., Laguna Niguel, (949) 831-4359; www.regencymovies.com. Thurs., July 3, 7:30 p.m. Call for cost.

West Side Story
One of the greatest film musicals, West Side Story remains emotionally affecting due mainly to the strength of its music. Musical-theater legends Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim transported Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet to inner-city New York and, in the process, created a legendary piece of theater. For a musical, it's pretty dark stuff, filled with racial tension, gang battles and murder, but its incredible choreography, set design and performances propelled the film to rare critical heights, winning 10 of the 11 Academy Awards for which it was nominated. Though many people have seen the film at home, its Super Panavision 70 photography practically demands a giant screen to be fully appreciated. If only our modern gangs would dance their problems out . . . Regency South Coast Village, 1561 W. Sunflower Ave., Santa Ana, (714) 557-5701; www.regencymovies.com. Wed., 7:30 p.m. $6.50.

Whale Rider
The preternaturaly charming Keisha Castle-Hughes, who earned a well-deserved Oscar nomination for her work, stars in this 2003 film that achieved widespread popularity despite its modest art-house origin. Castle-Hughes plays Paikea, granddaughter of a chieftain who becomes convinced that she is destined to lead the tribe despite the traditional prohibition against women holding positions of political power in Maori culture. Struggling against her culture and her family, Paikea must prove that she could do the job better than any man. The film is a thoughtful and moving exploration of gender roles, familial ties and the functions of tradition in society. Bring a beach chair and a picnic dinner to this outdoor screening. But leave the harpoons at home. That's just tasteless. Lang Park, 21540 Wesley Dr., Laguna Beach, (949) 494-8971, ext. 201; www.lagunaartmuseum.com. Sat., 7:30 p.m. Free.

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 tchild@ocweekly.com. All materials must be received at least two weeks before the screening.


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