Friday, May 11
The Academy Film Archive is screening two rarely shown Cuban films from the 1970s in a double feature co-presented by the Cinemateca de Cuba and hosted by its director, Luciano Castillo. Based on a 1959 novel by Ortiz Fernández, A Cuban Fight Against the Demons — newly restored by the Academy — dramatizes the plight of Cuban revolutionaries against Spanish colonizers in the 17th century. The Survivors is a satirical look at a wealthy family's retreat from reality in the wake of the Cuban revolution. The director of both films, Tomás Gutiérrez Alea, is best known for his 1968 masterpiece Memories of Underdevelopment; here is a chance to connect with two of his lesser-known works. A special panel will feature Alea's widow, actress Mirta Ibarra, and cinematographer Mario García Joya. Linwood Dunn Theater, 1313 Vine St., Hollywood; Fri., May 11, 7 p.m.; $5. (310) 247-3000, www.oscars.org.
Saturday, May 12
The summer of Bergman continues with a citywide celebration marking the Swedish director's centennial. The American Cinematheque has a doozy of a triple feature: Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light and The Silence. Often referred to as the “Faith Trilogy” or simply “the Trilogy,” all three films hinge on the kind of existential anguish that made Bergman a household name among the art-house crowd in the early 1960s. The Egyptian will present each feature in crisp DCPs for a night not soon to be forgotten — though you may need a pick-me-up afterward. Egyptian Theatre, 6712 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood; Sat., May 12, 7:30 p.m.; $15. (323) 466-3456, americancinemathequecalendar.com.
Abbas Kiarostami's death in 2016 rattled the tectonic plates of international cinema. Now his final film, finished under the auspices of his son Ahmad, makes its Los Angeles debut at the Billy Wilder. 24 Frames is composed of two dozen vignettes — shot in black-and-white with a stationary camera — that pay tribute to cinema's artistic ancestors, particularly painting and photography. As a final statement from one of the medium's most humane and accomplished artists, it's worth a look for its pedigree alone. UCLA's Billy Wilder Theater, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood; Sat.-Sun., May 12-13, 7 p.m.; $10. (310) 206-8013, cinema.ucla.edu.
Cinespia is back for the summer with its series of films screened on the grounds of Hollywood Forever Cemetery. First on the list is The NeverEnding Story, Wolfgang Peterson's primal, oneiric yet kid-friendly fantasy that inspired two sequels we shall not discuss. The 1980s never really died, as the film's continued popularity has proven in the decades since — even the skeptical adult might find it hard to pooh-pooh the film's strong bid for child literacy (ditto The Princess Bride). Tickets sell out faster than Falkor the Luckdragon can fly, so don't drag your feet. Hollywood Forever Cemetery, 6000 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood; Sat., May 12, 8:30 p.m.; $16 (plus $12 for on-site parking). cinespia.org.
Tuesday, May 15
If Saturday night's triple dose of Bergman at the Egyptian leaves you wanting more, try a Wild Strawberries chaser at LACMA. The stormy auteur's 1957 film is one of his finest, defined by a deep humanism surrounding the story of a professor coming face-to-face with his life's failures en route to accepting a lifetime achievement award. Starring legendary Swedish director-turned-actor Victor Sjöström, the film features a classic opening dream sequence that ranks with Hitchcock's Spellbound and Buñuel's Los olvidados as one of the best ever. LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Blvd., Mid-Wilshire; Tue., May 15, 1 p.m.; $4. (323) 857-6000, lacma.org.
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