The following is a guest post by Jenny Paxson of the Packard Campus.
Thursday, February 2 (7:30 p.m.)
Beatlemania on American Bandstand (1964)
This program will present a firsthand account of the effects that the Beatles had upon the youth of America in 1964, through performances culled from Dick Clark’s American Bandstand. Included is a compilation of Beatles-related segments, as well as performances by The Beach Boys, Sam Cooke and Little Richard. Also on the program is a segment from Albert and David Maysles’ 1991 documentary The Beatles: The First U.S. Visit.
Friday, February 3 (7:30 pm)
Let it Be (United Artists, 1970)
In this rarely-seen documentary directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg, the Beatles are shown rehearsing songs for their album Let it Be at Twickenham Film Studios, followed by an unannounced concert on the rooftop of their Apple headquarters in London. Joined by Billy Preston, they perform “Get Back,” “Don’t Let Me Down,” “I’ve Got a Feeling,” “One After 909” and “Dig a Pony,” intercut with reactions and comments from surprised Londoners gathering on the streets below. It would be the last time the Beatles ever performed together in public. Although the film does not dwell on the discord within the group, it does provide some glimpses into the dynamics that would lead to the the group’s break-up. John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr collectively won an Academy Award for best original song score for the film.
Saturday, February 4 (2:00 p.m.)
The NeverEnding Story (Warner Bros, 1984)
Bastian Balthazar Bux, a dreamy young boy tormented by school bullies, escapes his tormentors one day into an old book shop, where he discovers a mysterious book: The Neverending Story. Bastian is drawn into the magical world of Fantasia described by the book, which is being engulfed by a dark force called The Nothing and needs a hero to save it from destruction. Directed by Wolfgang Petersen, The NeverEnding Story stars Barret Oliver, Noah Hathaway, Tami Stronach and Moses Gunn. Adapted from the German fantasy novel of the same name by Michael Ende (originally published in 1979 and in English in 1983), the film was followed by two sequels.
Saturday, February 4 (7:30 p.m.)
Singin’ in the Rain (MGM, 1952)
This rollicking musical satire of Hollywood in the 1920s when film transitioned from silent to sound features outstanding performances by Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor, Jean Hagen, and Gene Kelly, who co-directed the film with Stanley Donen. Now considered one of the greatest musicals ever made, it’s filled with memorable songs, lavish routines and Kelly’s fabulous song-and-dance number performed in the rain. Although Debbie Reynolds had made a few movies prior to her role as Kathy Selden, this is the film that made her a star and is one of the films for which she is best remembered. Singin’ in the Rain was added to the National Film Registry in 1989, the Registy’s inaugural year.
For more information on our programs, please visit the website at: www.loc.gov/avconservation/theater/.