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Bryn Mawr Film Institute: August at a Glance

This month brings classics, cult favorites and opera.

August brings several classic films, a "Bill Murray, Scene Stealers" series and two cult films to the big screen. The month rounds out with a screening of Casablanca. Currently showing at BMFI are To Rome With Love and Beasts of the Southern Wild.

Public Relations Manager Devin Wachs tells us what to expect:

Open Screen Monday (9:15 p.m. Monday, Aug. 6)

Held the first Monday of each month, Open Screen Monday is a monthly free event during which any aspiring filmmakers can submit films, up to 10 minutes long, in DVD or VHS format. Others in the community can attend for free.  

Caddyshack (7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 7)

In the "Bill Murray, Scene Stealer" series, Murray plays a groundskeeper—with a vendetta against a gopher—at an upscale golf course. Chevy Chase and Rodney Dangerfield also star.

All That Heaven Allows (7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 8)

This 1955 film, shown on 35mm, is about a New England widow who falls for her much younger gardener, throwing her children and friends into an uproar. It is the last movie in BMFI's "It's a Mad Men's World" series, which is inspired by the TV show Mad Men. (It's possible Betty Draper could relate to some of the societal pressures facing this widow.) The movie is also being shown in conjunction with a summer classics seminar, which begins at 6:30 p.m. and includes a reading about the film, an introductory lecture before the film and a guided discussion after the film. The course, $25 for BMFI members and $30 for non-members, also includes the movie ticket, popcorn and a drink.

Xanadu (11:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 10)

In this 1980s musical, Olivia Newton-John joins Gene Kelly in his final film role. The cult film, a notorious box-office bomb, is being shown as part of BMFI's "The Late Show" series. Newton-John plays the role of Zeus's daughter, who inspires a man to open a roller disco.

La Traviata (1 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 12)

This Verdi opera, performed at the Opera Festival St. Margarethen in Austria, is a classic tale of Parisian lovers. Kristiane Kaiser, Magdalena Anna Hofmann and Jean-François Borras star, and Ernst Märzendorfer conducts.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 14)

Philip Kaufman conducts this 1978 remake of this film, about aliens who come to invade the human race. A group of scientists must save humanity.

The Right Stuff (7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 21)

This 1983 movie, starring Sam Shepard, Ed Harris and Dennis Quaid and directed by Philip Kaufman, is about the origins of the U.S. space program. Though it has a lot of humor in it, it remains pretty true to reality. Annette Insdorf, a professor of film studies at Columbia University, will be on hand at 6:30 to sign copies of her recent book, Contemporary Film Directors: Philip Kaufman, and to introduce the film.

Tootsie (7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22)

The last film in the "Bill Murray, Scene Stealers" series, Dustin Hoffman plays an out-of-work actor who dresses as a woman to land a part in a soap opera. Murray steals the scene as Hoffman's roommate, a struggling playwright trying to stage his play Return to Love Canal.

They Live (11:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 24)

This John Carpenter film from 1988, about Los Angeles being infested by aliens, stars wrestling champ "Rowdy" Roddy Piper as a construction worker who has magic sunglasses that allow him to see through disguises. The fate of humanity rests in his hands.

Ben-Hur (7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 28)

This 1959 epic, which won an unprecedented 11 Academy Awards, is about a Jewish prince who is forced into slavery and then seeks revenge. Ultimately, it is a story of redemption and peace.

Casablanca (7 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 29)

Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman star in this classic, with which BMFI traditionally ends its summer programming.

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