Now that the egg nog has curdled and the tree is turning brown, what better way to attempt to rekindle some of that fleeting, squandered joy than by a visit to the Alex Film Society's “3rd Annual Greatest Cartoons Ever” program? Curated by renowned animation maven Jerry Beck, it's certain to provide much more than a lively, lowbrow diversion for your unruly kiddies. This two-and-half-hour trove of animated shorts affords another chance to relish in the luxuriously satirical and fantastic graphical delights that such geniuses as Chuck Jones and Tex Avery visited upon our popular consciousness. And it's not just about cheap thrills and easy giggles — the socio-cultural content and varied messagery of these film makers are never less than fascinating, and will definitely serve to highlight the stark differences between a richly racy, psychologically shrewd Max and Dave Fleischer effort as contrasted by the emotionally manipulative yet morally evasive agenda of Walt Disney. Think of it as an All American Battle Royale, pitting Betty Boop against Mickey Mouse, Bugs Bunny versus Superman — but the true prevailing victors here will be the audience members. Alex Theater, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale; Sat., Dec. 29, 2 & 7 p.m.; $15, $12.50 seniors & students. (818) 243-2539;

Sat., Dec. 29, 2 & 7 p.m., 2012

LA Weekly