Full Film Slate: “Imagine This,” “Crude,” (the Return of) “The Cove,” “Coco Before Chanel” and Michael Moore's Latest Polemic

Chill the Red Bull, re-heat the coffee and warm up the crack pipe: your eyeballs are about to get a workout from local screens in the days ahead.

“Imagine This” took a film crew high into the Andes Mountains.

First, Laguna Beach Film Society screens the documentary Imagine This tonight. Eion Bailey, an actor you may remember from TV's ER, took some friends and a film crew into a remote mountain village in Peru to see if they could change the lives of the people there in one week. Hit with unrelenting rain, a language barrier and limited resources, the Yanks set out to transform a local school, childrens' transportation to it and the every-day surroundings.

Imagine This screens at 7 p.m. at South Coast Cinema, 162 S. Coast Hwy., Laguna Beach. Admission is free to film society members and $15 for everyone else. For an extra $5, you can attend a pre-film reception that includes wine and hors d'oeuvres and begins at 6 p.m. around the corner at Wells Fargo Bank's Community Room, 260 Ocean Ave., Laguna Beach. Call (949) 494-5872, extension 201, for more information.


“Is Chevron scared of Crude the movie? asked a Reuters News Service piece the other day.

An American camera crew also headed into South America to film this documentary, but it's very different than Imagine This. Three years in the making from filmmaker Joe Berlinger (Brother's Keeper, Paradise Lost, Metallica: Some Kind of Monster), Crude chronicles one of the largest and most controversial legal cases: the $27 billion “Amazon Chernobyl” case that pit Ecuadorian Amazonian tribal peoples against Chevron/Texaco. 

Those who've seen it say Crude presents the controversy from multiple viewpoints and that everyone “must” see it–your Chevron credit card be damned! It opens Friday at Edwards University, which is at Stanford and Campus in Irvine, across from UCI.

Due to popular demand, the same theater has held over for another week The Cove, the documentary we told you about here about the annual massacre of more than 25,000 dolphins in Wakayama, Japan.

Filmmakers Charles Hambleton and Larry David Eudene, who have been introducing their movie and sticking around afterward to take audience questions at Edwards University, are scheduled to do so again at Friday's

4 and 7:20 p.m. shows. You can also have a one-on-one meet-and-greet with Hambleton, a master diver and sailing teacher who taught the cast and crew in each Disney Pirates of the Caribbean movie, after each screening next door at Britta's Cafe N Bar.

Captain Dave's Dolphin N Whale Sarari in Dana Point has also taken to the film. Retain your ticket stub from The Cove, take it to Captain Dave's and get half off any whale and dolphin watching excursion. The blue whales mentioned in the film form the largest pod in the world just off Dana Point every September. 

This time, Michael Moore's got t-shirts.

Meanwhile, Edwards University has opened every Michael Moore documentary dating back to 1989's Roger N Me. They'll keep the streak alive Friday, Sept. 25, when Moore's Capitalism: A Love Story opens there. Interestingly, what SFist lovingly refers to as Moore's “latest love letter to communism” was financially backed by cable magnet and unabashed capitalist John Malone.

And we'll end with a fictional feature film. Anne Fontaine's Coco Before Chanel, which stars Audrey Tautou as the headstrong orphan who grew up to be the legendary couturier Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, is scheduled to open Oct. 2 at Edwards Westpark in Irvine.              

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