Sunset Blvd.

Monday, August 12
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1hr 50mins // directed by:Billy Wilder // featuring:William Holden, Gloria Swanson, Erich von Stroheim, Jack Webb // 35mm

The Coolidge welcomes back to the screen Billy Wilder's iconoclastic Hollywood noir, Sunset Blvd.

William Holden stars as Joe Gillis, an unsuccessful screenwriter who is on the run from debt collectors and repo men. Driving down Sunset Blvd his tire blows out and he finds shelter in an old, seemingly abandoned mansion. Unbeknownst to him, it houses faded silent movie star Norma Desmond (Gloria Swanson). Realizing Joe is a screenwriter she sees an opportunity to fulfill her dreams of making a triumphant return to the silver screen and restore her name. She convinces Joe to write a script for her and it is soon sent off to the studios.

Paramount calls, but Norma insists on only speaking with Cecil B. DeMille (playing himself). When it appears that the only way to do that is by visiting in person, they drive Norma's rare vintage luxury car down to the lot to have a sit down. Greeted with delicate sympathy, it soon becomes clear to Joe that the only reason that Paramount had called was to rent her 1929 Isotta Fraschini Tipo 8A - the very car they drove onto the lot. Joe keeps this information a secret from Norma, who continues to prepare to get ready for her grand new role. The descent into complete psychosis comes quickly for Norma, and shortly, enough becomes enough for Joe, who decides to move back to Ohio and leave Tinseltown once and for all. Can he escape the clutches of Sunset Blvd before it's too late?

With an outstanding supporting cast that includes Erich von Stroheim as Max Von Mayerling, Norma Desmond's butler, gossip columnist Hedda Hopper (playing herself), and cameos by leading silent film actors Buster Keaton, H. B. Warner and Anna Q. Nilsson.