Restored versions of two great films come to SIFF Cinema at the Uptown this week: “The Great Escape,” the 1963 tale of rebellious POWs starring Steve McQueen, and David Lean’s 1957 war epic “The Bridge on the River Kwai.” At the other end of the spectrum, the 2012 comedy “Cockneys vs. Zombies” plays Friday and Saturday, and the 1966 cult film “Manos: The Hands of Fate” (accompanied by a preview of a live puppet adaptation) screens at 9 p.m. Wednesday. Tickets are $6 for SIFF members, $11 general. 511 Queen Anne Ave. N., Seattle (206-324-9996 or www.siff.net).
But wait! What’s that, up in the sky? A tornado full of sharks?! If you haven’t seen the Syfy channel’s cheese-tastic “Sharknado,” starring Ian Ziering and Tara Reid, it will screen at several area theaters on Friday. For theaters and showtimes, go to www.fathomevents.com.
“Shintoho Schlock: Girls, Guns & Ghosts,” a weeklong series of films from one of the studios active during Japanese cinema’s 1950s golden age, opens Friday with the 1956 drama “Revenge of the Pearl Queen” at the Northwest Film Forum, 1515 12th Ave., Seattle. Tickets for the series are $30 for NWFF members, $50 general.
The Seattle Experimental Animation Team’s collection of independent animated shorts titled “Strange Creatures” will screen at 4 p.m. Saturday at NWFF. Tickets are $6 for NWFF members, $7-$10 general (206-829-7863 or www.nwfilmforum.org).
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Scarecrow Video celebrates “VHS Month!,” with a series of “rare and weird” titles from its rental collection. First up is “Sports, Leisure, & Videotape!” at 8 p.m. Friday, “Let It Be” at 8 p.m. Aug. 10, the 1959 version of “Turn of the Screw” at 6 p.m. Aug. 12 and 13, “Tales of the Quadead Zone” at 8 p.m. Aug. 16, “Men of the 1980s: Don Johnson & Mr. T” at 8 p.m. Aug. 17, “Viva VHS!” at 6 p.m. Aug. 19 and “Furious” at 8 p.m. Aug. 23 and 24. Apart from the series, Howard Hawks’ 1941 screwball comedy “Ball of Fire,” starring Gary Cooper and Barbara Stanwyck, will screen at 1 p.m. Sunday and Neill Blomkamp’s 2009 sci-fi thriller “District 9” will play at 6 p.m. Wednesday (Blomkamp’s new sci-fi film “Elysium” opens Aug. 9). All events are free and 21 and older. 5030 Roosevelt Way N.E., Seattle (206-524-8554 or www.scarecrow.com).
“Dead in Five Heartbeats,” a independent drama that tells the story of two friends who discover the true meaning of their Motorcycle Club Brotherhood, will screen at 7 p.m. Saturday at the Historic Everett Theatre, 2911 Colby Ave., Everett. Tickets are $11.50 (425-258-6766 or www.historiceveretttheatre.org).
“Ready to Fly,” a documentary about the U.S. Women’s Ski Jumping Team, will show at 6:30 p.m. Monday at BlackRapid Studios, 517 Aloha St., Seattle. Director Bill Kerig and team members Lindsey Van and Abby Hughes will lead a Q&A following the screening. For tickets and more information, go to www.rallyme.com/rallies/145.
And finally, bring your candlestick to the Harvard Exit at midnight Saturday, where you can catch the late, great Eileen Brennan (among a collection of comic suspects that includes Tim Curry, Michael McKean, Leslie Ann Warren and Madeline Kahn) in the 1985 adaptation of the board game “Clue.” 807 E. Roy St., Seattle. Tickets are $8-$8.25 (206-323-0587 or www.landmarktheatres.com).
Doug Knoop: firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @dougknoop