Film: from Ginger to Jolson

On screen, Al Jolson was comforting Frank Morgan, who, six years later, would play ''The Wizard of Oz.'' ''It's all right, Mr. Mayor. You're home,'' said Jolson.

''Home?'' replied Morgan. ''There's no place like home.''

This unconscious reference to his future film had the audience rolling in the pews. It was another Thursday evening at the Harvard-Epworth Methodist Church in Cambridge, where an audience had gathered for ''Hallelujah, I'm a Bum!'' another film presented by the Rev. Edward Mark.

Now in its 20th year, the Harvard-Epworth film series brings an eclectic array of films to Greater Boston, many for the first time. The fall schedule includes films as diverse as ''The Major and the Minor,'' with Ginger Rogers, (Sept. 27), and Yasujiro Ozu's ''Tokyo Story'' (in Japanese, with subtitles, Sept. 30).

Mr. Mark shows films ''people can't see elsewhere.'' The Thursday and Sunday night screenings have included everything from Clint Eastwood's early ''spaghetti westerns'' to the silent comedies of Harold Lloyd.

''About half the films are movies I know and want people to see,'' Mr. Mark said. The rest are films that he himself is curious about. He is particularly interested in directors whose films have a religious focus, including Alfred Hitchcock, John Ford, and Robert Bresson.

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