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Arts and Entertainment

Film Calendar 10/28-10/31: Dusk-to-Dawn Halloween Mega-Horrors!

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I'd be remiss to my Lord Samhain if I put off the Halloween coverage a second longer. But before plunging into the depths of hell, take a moment to plumb the depths of heaven at the Aero. Counterculture cartoonist Bill Plympton appears in support of his latest work, Idiots and Angels. The hand-crafted dark comedy finds a drunken curmudgeon sprouting a pair of wings that compel him to do good deeds. The only problem is - he wants to be bad, and will stop at nothing to sour his spirits. If you can't make it on Thursday, it's also playing for one week only at Laemmle's Sunset starting Friday.

Back at the Aero, things go bump all night at Saturday's Dusk-to-Dawn Horrorthon: one dead Jackson nets you giveaways, caffeine, shrieking shorts, drive-in classics, killer kids, vampires next door, Italian zombies, horror icon The Tall Man, and Clive Barker's still-underrated Candyman. Since you'll be too frightened to sleep, stick around for the Sunday evening screening of foul-mouthed kiddie horror The Monster Squad before you hit the town looking for sweets to the sweets. Speaking of sweet, if you're long on courage but short on cash, the Downtown Independent raises hell with Razorblades In Your Rolos, a free rooftop party, costume contest and Halloween shorts showcase.

Lon Chaney was The Man of a Thousand Faces, and the Old Town Music Hall plays one of his scariest, The Phantom of the Opera. Furthering the fearsome family legacy, the New Beverly has Lon Chaney Jr.'s The Wolf Man on Halloween night, paired with another classic Universal monster, The Invisible Man. Two more Universal legends square off at the Egyptian; The Raven pairs Bela Lugosi and Boris Karloff as murderous maniacs, while The Black Cat pits the titans of terror against each other. Between the films and beyond the grave lies a panel featuring Bela Lugosi Jr., Lugosi co-star Louise Currie and the launch of anthology tribute comic Bela Lugosi's Tales From The Grave. The Cinefamily has another family affair with two from Vincent Price and exploitation maestro William Castle, bringing together Castle's daughter Terry and his long-lost movie gimmicks "Emergo!" and "Percepto!", in which random seats are hot-wired for extra shocks. Bring your own hellspawn to the Hammer for a family-friendly matinee of Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein & Disney's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.

If you sold your soul for '70s horrors, the devil delivered in spades! The Royal Theatre brings out William Friedkin's 2000 director's cut of The Exorcist, while the glamorous ghouls of Sins O' The Flesh shadowplay two nights of Rocky Horror up the block. The Grindhouse Film Festival unearths two from underappreciated horror actor Robert Quarry, The Return of Count Yorga and Dr. Phibes Rises Again (more Vincent Price is never a bad thing). The UCLA Film & Television Archives covers blaxploitation's dip into horror with two soulful screamers: the psychedelic Ganja & Hess and better-than-expected Blacula. Thursday, the Cinefamily highlights two gialli - ultraviolent thrillers known for their color schemes, killer scores and incomprehensible stories. Then they take it straight to hell Saturday night with a Heavy Metal Halloween Party featuring backwards masking and Mistress of Reality, an all-female Black Sabbath cover band!

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Full list appears below. (Believe it or not, there's still more!) See you at the movies!

All Week

Thursday 10/28

Friday 10/29

Saturday 10/30

Sunday 10/31

That's all for this week. Halloween + my wife's birthday = best weekend of the year. Hands down!

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