In a career that has spanned over 50 years as a writer, producer and director, Blake Edwards has delivered classics in nearly every genre. To that end, his varied body of work will be celebrated at the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica during the month of July, with screenings of his wild comedies as well as thrillers and musicals.
Though known primarily for comedies such as The Party and The Pink Panther, Edwards exhibited mastery of the domestic melodrama (the beautiful and tragic Days of Wine and Roses), the thriller (Experiment in Terror) and the musical (Darling Lili). In the best tradition of studio-era auteurs like Howard Hawks, Edwards managed to inject distinctly personal ideas and styles into popular forms. Regardless of genre, almost all of his films share a profound interest in the complexities and difficulties of close relationships (whether between friends, lovers or colleagues) and the wide range of the human experience. In fact, Edwards’ best films often veer from humiliation and anxiety to giddy romance and celebration, all within the space of a couple of hours. I reviewed some of these movies when they hit DVD for the first time a couple years ago, as part of a collection of Edwards’ work, so I may try to slap up a couple of those reviews later next month.
Regardless, the Aero’s special retrospective kicks off on July 10 with an evening screening of Breakfast at Tiffany’s, followed the next night by a double feature of 1964’s The Pink Panther and 1975’s Return of the Pink Panther, starring Peter Sellers. The series concludes with a celebratory screening of The Great Race on Edwards’ 86th birthday, July 26. The Aero Theatre
is located at 1328 Montana Avenue in Santa Monica
information on directions and the Aero’s upcoming schedule,
phone (323) 466-FILM.