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Special screenings 

Special screenings

First Annual Texas Independent Film Festival

When it comes to Texas filmmaking, Austin certainly holds the title belt, for better or worse. Still, even the reining champion is bound to provoke some formidable challenges, amateurs who may never compete in the same ring but train for it nonetheless. San Antonio has managed to hold our own with the Guadalupe Center's CineFestival, the Golden Showers, er, San Antonio Underground Film Festival, a number of youth media projects in schools and community organizations, and an array of talented, ambitious cinema buffs who have quietly nurtured a growing community appreciative of quirky, off-beat, independent movies. To the list add the Texas Independent Filmmakers International Festival, an ambitious debut of what the organizers hope will be an annual event for years to come. In addition to several shorts and feature length works from filmmakers around the state and Mexico, the festival lives up to its name with a full day of music performances and an art fair. Patricia Zapata, event coordinator, calls it a family friendly event - and, in a nice touch for concerned parents leery of raunchy, risqué indy fare, screenings will include an informal rating.

Can they go the distance? As excited as she is about the festival's premiere, Zapata is already looking ahead to next year. "The beginning of something is always better than the end," she says.

The 1st Annual Texas Independent Filmmakers International Festival will be held from 11am-7pm Saturday, August 7, at the UTSA downtown campus. For more information, or a schedule (still pending at press time) log on to

Los olvidados / The Young and the Damned

Dir. Luis Buñuel; writ Buñuel and Luis Alcorza; feat. Alfonso Mejía, Estela Inda, Miguel Inclán, Roberto Cobo, Alma Delia Fuentes, Francisco Jambrina, Jesús Navarro, Efraín Arauz (NR)

Buñuel's brutal 1950 masterpiece dramatizes the struggle for power among young men in the slums of Mexico, as an experienced, hardened gang leader systematically destroys a younger, more idealistic rival and is eventually destroyed himself.

Los Olvidados screens at 4pm Sunday, August 8 and at 7pm Wednesday, August 11 as part of the Instituto de México's "Buñuel in Mexico" series, at the Instituto, 600 Hemisfair Park. Admission is free. Info: 227-0123

A Clockwork Orange

Dir. Stanley Kubrick; writ. Kubrick based on a novel by Anthony Burgess; feat. Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke, John Clive, Adrienne Corri, Carl Duering (X)

Depending on who you ask, Kubrick's brilliant, disturbing take on Burgess' novel either echoes one of the character's warning against "cures" for societal problems that subvert our free will, or critiques the false narrative of filmmaking, but whatever your interpretation, there's no escaping the violent nature or insights of this film.

A Clockwork Orange screens at 7:30pm August 10 as part of Texas Public Radio's "Cinema Tuesdays" series, at the Bijou at Crossroads Theater. Admission is $10 members / $12 non-members. 614-8977 or for reservations.

His Girl Friday

Dir. Howard Hawks; writ. Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur; feat. Cary Grant, Rosalind Russell, Ralph Bellamy, Gene Lockhart (NR)

Still a high watermark for romantic comedy, His Girl Friday stars Cary Grant as a charming but overbearing newspaper publisher who schemes to keep his ex-wife (Russell), and editor of his paper, from marrying an insurance salesman (played sympathetically by Ralph Bellamy) by tying up her time and attention in a muckraker-worthy scandal.

His Girl Friday screens at approximately 9pm Thursday, August 12 as part of the series "In the Public Domain," at the Slab, across the street from La Tuna, 100 Probandt. Free admission. For more information, call 212-9373.

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