Moviegoing is a transcendent experience, with each film offering the potential to lure viewers into a completely different way of looking at the world. This weekend, local film fans are in for an even more immersive experience when the Old Pasadena Film Festival returns with 17 classics presented in an array of unique urban settings as part of the largest free outdoor film festival in Southern California.
The fun kicks off tonight with the 1995 teen comedy “Clueless,” starring Alicia Silverstone and Paul Rudd, at the One Colorado Courtyard. Also tonight, Gwyneth Paltrow’s lovable star turn in the 1998 British romantic comedy “Sliding Doors” graces the interior of the Distant Lands travel store.
Then on Friday things get steamy with 1958’s classic film adaptation of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof,” featuring Elizabeth Taylor and Paul Newman, screening under the stars at One Colorado. And on Saturday, James Dean makes an appearance, also at the Courtyard, in “Rebel Without a Cause.”
A much more fantastical night at the movies awaits Thursday July 14, with Tim Burton’s timeless “Edward Scissorhands” playing at One Colorado. The following night brings another two-screening evening, with “Around the World in 80 Days” playing at Distant Lands (appropriately enough). The original 1950 version of “Father of the Bride,” with Spencer Tracy and Taylor in the title roles, runs Friday at the Courtyard before Steve McQueen and Faye Dunaway turn up the heat while pulling off a heist Saturday in the 1968 original “The Thomas Crown Affair.”
On Thursday July 21, 1963’s “The Pink Panther” with Peter Sellers plays at One Colorado, and the 1984 Best Picture nominee “A Passage to India,” runs at Distant Lands.
Friday July 22 brings viewers another Taylor film when “National Velvet” plays at One Colorado. Then “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” starring Newman and Robert Redford, comes blazing into that venue on Saturday night.
But the best is being saved for the last couple of weekends, with a Saturday July 23 screening in Central Park of the original “Invasion of the Body Snatchers.” Then, the final weekend kicks off Thursday July 28 with “Princess Bride” at One Colorado and 1987’s deeply weird Central American drama “The Mosquito Coast,” starring Harrison Ford, playing at Distant Lands.
On Friday July 29, yet another Taylor film unspools with “A Place in the Sun,” screening at One Colorado, before Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr class the place up Saturday with the immortal love story “An Affair to Remember.”
But leave it to the wicked funmeisters at the Old Pasadena Management District to go out with a bang, with Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” taking flight at another Central Park screening on July 30.
The Old Pasadena Film Festival opens at 8 p.m. tonight and runs at 8 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays through July 30 at the following Pasadena locations: One Colorado Courtyard, 41 Hugus Alley; Distant Lands, 20 S. Raymond Ave., and Central Park, 275 S. Raymond Ave. Admission to all films is free. For more information, visit oldpasadena.org.