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Make ‘Em Laugh: A Look at Modern American Comedies

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RESERVATIONS FOR RAISING ARIZONA ARE CLOSED

Our latest series with Dallas Morning News film critic Chris Vognar and Stella Artois, focuses on how filmmakers have made us laugh through the decades.

Starting with the beginning of the sound era, we’ll take you from the 1930′s through the 1980s and examine a comedy that helped define not only filmmaking in its decade but also reflected America’s tastes, fears, politics—and sense of humor—during its moment in the theaters.

After each screening, Vognar will lead a discussion about the film, give us context on the movie’s place in cinema history, and share some facts about the production and behind-the-scenes info. As always, we’re eager to hear your observations and take your questions.

All screenings will be held at the Angelika Film Center — Dallas. Seating is limited and RSVPs are required. The reservation period opens 10 days before each screening. Check back here or on our events calendar for a link to the reservation form at that time.

The Schedule

August 9: DUCK SOUP (1933)

In this classic Marx Brothers comedy, Rufus T. Firefly is named president/dictator of bankrupt Freedonia and declares war on neighboring Sylvania over the love of wealthy Mrs. Teasdale.

September 13: SULLIVAN’S TRAVELS (1941)

Preston Sturges directs this satire about a movie director who longs to make a socially relevant drama, but eventually learns that comedies are his more valuable contribution to society. It stars Joel McCrea and Veronica Lake in one of her first leading roles.

October 11: SOME LIKE IT HOT (1959)
Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon star as two musicians who join an all-female band to escape town after witnessing a mob hit. Both fall hard for Marylin Monroe’s “Sugar Kane” and vie for her attention while trying to stay undercover.

November 1: DR. STRANGELOVE OR: HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING AND LOVE THE BOMB (1964)
Stanley Kubrick’s cold-war comedy stars Peter Sellers and George C. Scott. In the film, an Air Force general has ordered a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union and now all the President’s men trip over themselves to recall the bombers before it’s too late.

December 13: ANNIE HALL (1977)
Woody Allen’s 1978 Best Picture winner examines the nature of love through the eyes of a comedian, Alvy Singer, who tries to figure out why his relationship to Annie Hall (Diane Keaton) has fallen apart.

January 10: RAISING ARIZONA (1987)
In this Coen Brothers film, the childless marriage between an ex-con (Nicolas Cage) and an ex-Cop (Holly Hunter) leads the couple to kidnap a baby from a set of quintuplets — which leads to more trouble.

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