The Top Film Events of the Week is a weekly column that goes live on Mondays and showcases some of best film events currently taking place around the country
There are few things we love as much as the holidays, not the least of which because it's during this time that our benevolent overlords at Cinematical give us drones a few extra days to relax and enjoy the company of other human beings. But the other reason we really like this time of year is because theaters start showing holiday-themed films – and not just the obvious ones. Or, well, if they're obvious, at least they're not necessarily conventional (anytime you can potentially catch 'It's a Wonderful Life' and 'Die Hard' in the same week in celebration of the Christmas season, it's a good thing).
At any rate, check out this week's picks for films and film-related events taking place around the country. But we would like to remind you to please leave comments and send in emails with any suggestions you may have for events, screenings, or other opportunities film fans may have to share with others in their celebration of the medium. Also, when and if you attend any of the events listed below, please let us know about your experiences, and let the organizers know where you found out about it!
On Monday, November 29, critically-acclaimed writer and performer David Schmader will host a screening of Prince's cinematic magnum opus, 'Purple Rain,' at the Alamo Ritz. Information available indicates that Schmader might not be entirely complimentary to the film, which is heresy around these parts, but make sure you check out the Alamo Ritz website for showtimes to make sure you support the Kid as he battles family dysfunction and the love of an extremely hot Appollonia in order to become a pop superstar.
Also at the Alamo Ritz, Die Hard is playing on December 5 as a warm-up for the next month of die-hard holiday movies. The Ritz promises free cap guns and live explosions in the theater, so make sure you check out the Alamo Ritz website for showtimes and ticketing information.
On December 2, check out the current online epicenter of fanboy-focused artwork, the Alamo Drafthouse's collectible art boutique Mondo, for a sale of a new, limited-edition print of 'Star Wars' most infamous bounty hunter Greedo. Cinematical has the first look at the 24" x 34" print, which was created by Florian Bertmer in a run of only 400, but make sure you check out the Mondo Tees website and follow @MondoNews on Twitter for the exact time you can start buying prints for your favorite 'Star Wars' fan.
On December 1, Pritzker Park is hosting a free screening of the classic holiday movie 'It's a Wonderful Life.' If you can bundle up in enough layers to survive an outdoor screening in December, check the Eventful website for more information.
Also on December 1, a decidedly colder movie, Stanley Kubrick's underrated 'Eyes Wide Shut,' will be showing in a warmer location - Ida Noyes Hall. Check out the Eventful website for showtimes and ticket information.
On December 3, Grindhouse Releasing's signature repertory release, 'Gone With the Pope,' is screening at the New Beverly Cinema. Grindhouse's Sage Stallone and Bob Murawski literally spent years recovering, restoring and reassembling the remaining film elements of Duke Mitchell's previously unfinished masterpiece, all of which means that this is a film you have got to see, especially up on the big screen. The film is screening at midnight, but make sure you check out the New Beverly website for ticketing information.
Also on December 3 (and Dec. 4), the New Beverly Cinema is playing host to a double-feature screening of two iconic Jean-Luc Godard films, 'Breathless' and 'Contempt.' It's entirely possible that Brigitte Bardot never looked better than she does in the latter film, but even if she and 'Breathless' star Jean Seberg aren't enough to get you into the theater, Godard offers plenty of other innovations, surprises and historic breakthroughs to make these movies worth your time. Make sure you check out the New Beverly website for ticketing information.
And on December 4, Akira Kurosawa's 'Seven Samurai' is being shown at the American Cinematheque's Aero Theatre. The film ranks among the greatest ever made and seeing it on the big screen is always an event, so check out the Aero Theatre website for showtimes and ticketing information.
From November 29 through December 2, the IFC Center is showing a 35mm print of Yasujiro Ozu's 'Tokyo Story.' As the holidays take over everything else, take time out for a little bit of culture on the silver screen. Check out the IFC Center website for showtimes and ticket information.
On December 3 and 4, the Sunshine Cinema plays host to Bob Clark's first Christmas classic, 'Black Christmas.' Both screenings are at midnight, but make sure to check out the Landmark Theatres website for ticketing information.