The Frida Cinema

Orange County's Year-Round Film Festival

Action U.S.A.

Action U.S.A.

November 13th – November 26th 

VHS-era action, your mind detonates with fast cars, helicopter chases, profanity, nudity, cocaine-ity, fisticuffs, stolen diamonds, FBI agents, defenestration, shotgun castration, men on fire and Casio soundtracks — in 1989, daredevil-turned-filmmaker John Stewart squeezed all of the above into the most explosive, death-defying, bullet-riddled, grenade-launching, flame-broiled independent film in history!

Having cut his teeth handling stuntwork for such features as Neon Maniacs, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and Hard Rock Zombies, Stewart’s directorial debut tears out of the gates with a ferocity never seen before or since in the independent action pantheon. Under-appreciated character actor Gregory Scott Cummins — who’s played a greasy lowlife 167 times, and a good guy only twice — is a reluctantly heroic FBI agent tasked with keeping a witness safe after the mob murders her boyfriend. But the route back to federal headquarters is a non-stop barrage of bullets, blasts, and bodies, constantly raising the bar of inhuman wildness until the film’s final second. Don’t miss the insane 89-minute experience that is Action U.S.A. — unearthed and remastered by the American Genre Film Archive. […]

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Lowdown Dirty Criminals

Lowdown Dirty Criminals

November 20th – December 10th

A uniquely and distinctly kiwi take on the buddy comedy film, Lowdown Dirty Criminals features rising NZ star James Rolleston in a solidifying performance and as many laugh-out-loud moments as your typical crime caper-turned-thrilling-heist-turned-heartwarming-tale-of-friendship film.

When Freddy loses his job delivering pizza, he and his best buddy Marvin find work with a small time crook, Spiggs. After they botch a straightforward job, Spiggs sends them on a fool’s errand – to kill gangster Donny Kong, who’s been sleeping with Spiggs’ wife. When the wrong guy ends up dead, Freddy and Marvin find themselves crossing paths with someone even scarier than their boss – über gangster The Upholsterer and her hapless henchmen Semo and Roy. The ensuing chaos escalates into a world of hilarity and violence that’ll threaten their lives and force them to re-evaluate their career choices. […]

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It Cuts Deep

It Cuts Deep

November 20th – December 10th

Dark Sky Films and MPI Media present It Cuts Deep, the feature directorial debut of writer/director Nicholas Payne Santos (Holiday Fear, Mother F**ker).

While on Christmas vacation, a young couple contemplates their future together. Ashley is interested in getting married and having kids which terrifies Sam. When the more attractive and paternal Nolan enters the picture, Sam’s life spirals out of control as Ashley questions their relationship. Chaos reigns as Sam desperately clings to Ashley while fending off the threatening Nolan. […]

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Mandabi

Ends February 11th

This second feature by Ousmane Sembène was the first movie ever made in the Wolof language—a major step toward the realization of the trailblazing Senegalese filmmaker’s dream of creating a cinema by, about, and for Africans. […]

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Identifying Features

Ends February 11th

Winner of this year’s IFP Gotham Award for Best International Feature Film!

Middle-aged Magdalena (Mercedes Hernandez) has lost contact with her son after he took off with a friend from their town of Guanajuato to cross the border into the U.S., hopeful to find work. […]

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M.C. Escher: Journey to Infinity

Ends March 11th

M.C. Escher: Journey To Infinity is the story of world famous Dutch graphic artist M.C Escher (1898-1972). Equal parts history, psychology, and psychedelia, Robin Lutz’s entertaining, eye-opening portrait gives us the man through his own words and images. […]

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Atlantis

Ends February 18th

A prize-winner at the Venice Film Festival and Ukraine’s official selection for the 2021 Academy Awards, Atlantis is a gorgeous and visionary sci-fi drama. Eastern Ukraine, 2025. A desert unsuitable for human habitation. […]

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Lapsis

Ends March 4th

New York, an alternate present: the quantum computing revolution has begun and investors are lining their pockets in the quantum trading market. Building the network requires miles of infrastructure to be laid between huge magnetic cubes by “cablers” – unprotected gig workers who compete against robots. […]

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