Andrzej Zulawski's COSMOS (New French/Portuguese)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) - Friday, 7 and 9pm and Sunday, 1:30pm
Over a year after premiering at the Locarno Film Festival (where it picked up the Best Director award) and eight months after ?u?awski's death, COSMOS finally comes to Chicago. The fact that it never received a proper theatrical run—despite the easily discernible ?u?awski cult that blossomed after several local screenings of POSSESSION—is a triumph for Doc Films and a blot upon every other venue and festival in town. (This is a trend: did you know that Doc Films presented the Chicago premieres of THE RULES OF THE GAME and AU HASARD BALTHAZAR, too?) Under the circumstances, it's impossible to regard COSMOS as anything but a testy, full-bodied testament—a masterpiece that's also necessarily a rakish rupture with contemporary experience. But what is COSMOS, beyond the superlatives? A posthumous prank? A rebuke to the living? An act of re-shuffled, shape-shifting nostalgia? In a Film Comment interview conducted on the occasion of COSMOS's Locarno bow, ?u?awski inveighed against contemporary cinema in all its forms, declaring that "the only thing that I cannot sustain in cinema is boredom, this terrible boredom which assails European cinemas now, and these terrible festivals. Go to Cannes, you’ll die." It's true—you won't be bored. At its crudest, COSMOS is a frenetic, sputtering, buzzing, blinking contraption that would exhaust Michael Bay. I would need to a take a Tylenol or two before attempting to recount the plot in terms more concrete than "strange happenings," "stitches in time," "youth," "blood," "tongues," "lips," "l'amour fou" ... But moment to moment, COSMOS also plays like an impassioned harangue against the staidness of cinema's basic grammar: every cut is an invitation to dislocation, every line a sonic vehicle for home-made sound effects, cartoon voices, expressive grunts and groans, and occasional dialogue. In ?u?awski's words, it's "an attack against stupidity and a lack of imagination." But contra ?u?awski, COSMOS is not entirely without filmic precedent. Its basic challenge—finding a 21st-century cinematic language to translate the literary tropes of a high-modernist 20th-century novel by Witold Gombrowicz—was also Michel Gondry's task when adapting MOOD INDIGO from Boris Vian's L'Écume des jours. The presence of Sabine Azéma as the household matriarch also inevitably summons the late work of Alain Resnais; like MELO or NOT ON THE LIPS, COSMOS treats its source as a living text, its brio and danger undulled by age. As the narratives splinters, fractures, and doubles back, we arrive at a film that contests itself—the ultimate defense against complacency. See it before it self-destructs. (2015, 103 min, DCP Digital) KAW
More info at www.docfilms.uchicago.edu.
Andrei Tarkovsky’s ANDREI RUBLEV (Soviet Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) - Sunday, 6:30pm
A strong contender for the greatest Soviet film, Andrei Tarkovsky’s second feature (completed in 1966 but not shown publicly until 1969 and not released in its native country until 1971) is immersive and overwhelming, steeping viewers in a stunningly detailed recreation of the medieval world and offering profound meditations on the nature of human suffering, the social value of art and religion, and the possibility of achieving transcendence in earthly affairs. It’s also one of the most formally accomplished of all movies, featuring some of the densest mise-en-scene you’ll ever see and unfolding in meticulously choreographed long takes that suggest a ghostlike presence moving through the world. “At once humble and cosmic, Tarkovsky called RUBLEV ‘a film of the earth,’” J. Hoberman noted in his essay for the Criterion Collection. “Shot in widescreen and sharply defined black and white, the movie is supremely tactile—the four elements appearing as mist, mud, guttering candles, and snow. A 360-degree pan around a primitive stable conveys the wonder of existence. Such long, sinuous takes are like expressionist brush strokes; the result is a kind of narrative impasto.” The film charts the adult life of a 15th-century monk and painter who developed his talent as an artist around the same time as the Tartars were invading Russia. Tarkovsky presents the glories of Rublev’s creative process and the horrors that surrounded him, dramatizing the eternal struggle between the best and worst impulses of humankind. Interwoven throughout this struggle are visions that register like spiritual epiphanies, from the allegorical opening sequence (which imagines another artist who manages to fly above the world, only to destroy himself in the process) to the audacious re-imagining of the Crucifixion in a Russian snowscape to the reverential close-ups of Rublev’s paintings that conclude the film. (1966, 205 min, 35mm) BS
More info at www.docfilms.uchicago.edu.
Peter Fonda’s THE HIRED HAND (American Revival)
Northwest Chicago Film Society (at Northeastern Illinois University, The Auditorium, Building E., 3701 W. Bryn Mawr Ave.) – Tuesday, 7:30pm
Something of a spiritual sequel to Dennis Hopper’s counterculture classic EASY RIDER, Peter Fonda’s THE HIRED HAND similarly examines and even expands on the repercussions of both rebellion and conformity. (It probably goes without saying, but Fonda starred alongside Hopper in the latter’s directorial debut. THE HIRED HAND is also the first film made by its lanky, long-haired star after Universal gave him a million dollars following the success of EASY RIDER.) Fonda’s film takes a more literal form—that of the western—as it explores these quintessentially American ideals. Its protagonist, Harry Collings, is a searcher and a settler; having wandered the west for several years with his friend, Arch (played by Warren Oates, whose badass persona might rival Hopper’s in scope and veracity), he ventures home to the wife and child he abandoned in hopes of picking up where he left off. Wary of his return, his wife agrees to take him on as a hired hand, after which he slowly begins to regain her trust and affection. Up this point, the film seems almost docile, its only differentiator from more straightforward westerns of the time being its quasi-experimental use of dissolves, superimpositions, and static images that are reminiscent of old films whose missing footage is uncannily replaced with stills. It’s the last half hour that confronts the apparent acquiescence to traditional mores, as Harry must decide between the comfort of his family and the loyalty he feels towards both his friend and their former way of life. It’s ultimately this attachment that’s his undoing; as attractive as wife, child, and warm bed are to him, his fate is inevitable—gospel in the stars. Several reviews of the film allude to its Christian symbolism, perhaps imagining the western as the modern equivalent to those good stories, though Fonda seems to consider the genre as an answer to a generation’s yearning for a new kind of testament. If EASY RIDER explored a societal landscape, then THE HIRED HAND ventures into more spiritual territory, realizing a cultural struggle as ultimately being one with the self. Credit is also due to the late, great cinematographer Vilmos Zsigmond and actor-editor Frank Mazzola, both of whose combined aesthetic further imbues the sepulchral tone. Folk guitarist Bruce Langhorne of “Mr. Tambourine Man” fame likewise contributed his distinctive sound. Preceded by a selection of trailers of western films. (1971, 90 min, 35mm) KS
More info at www.northwestchicagofilmsociety.org.
G. W. Pabst’s DIARY OF A LOST GIRL (Silent American Revival)
Music Box Theatre - Thursday, 7pm
Made in Weimar Germany the same year as PANDORA’S BOX, G.W. Pabst and Louise Brooks’ second collaboration, DIARY OF A LOST GIRL, is decidedly less tantalizing, though it confronts morality and hypocrisy in much the same way and was just as controversial as its predecessor. (Based on a book by German author Margarete Böhme, it was poorly received largely in part due to its connection to the contentious source material.) The daughter of a well-to-do pharmacist, Brooks’ Thymian is sent to a reformatory after she refuses to marry the man who assaulted her. There she’s at the mercy of a barbarous headmistress and her doltish husband, though she and another girl are soon able to escape with the help of Thymian’s playboy admirer. The descent continues from there, and other taboo issues such as prostitution and suicide come into the equation; between Pabst and Brooks’ two films, virtually no hairy subject goes uncombed. Many examinations of DIARY OF A LOST GIRL focus not just on Brooks’ performance, but also her presence, the je ne sais quoi, so to speak, that’s made her so iconic. “Her job as an actress wasn't to lead us in the proper reaction,” Roger Ebert wrote about her in his review of the film. “It was to observe its reality.” In The American Cinema, Andrew Sarris explicitly states that Pabst is “cited here...for the retroactive glory of Louise Brooks.” Contrary to the out-and-out worship for an actress who was woefully underappreciated in her time, a 2002 article in the Guardian exclaims that Pabst “directed Garbo before she was famous and made Louise Brooks an icon,” then asks, “Why was everyone so keen to forget him?” Perhaps these actresses did in fact eclipse the auteur, but maybe that’s a worthy enough distinction. Live organ accompaniment by Dennis Scott. (1929, 89 min, 35mm) KS
More info at www.musicboxtheatre.com.
John Greyson’s URINAL (Canadian Experimental Revival)
White Light Cinema at the Nightingale (1084 N. Milwaukee Ave.) - Sunday, 7pm
URINAL, the first feature by Canadian artist John Greyson, imagines the coming-together of a half-dozen prominent artists from the first half of the 20th century: Sergei Eisenstein, Frida Kahlo, Yukio Mishima, Langston Hughes, Frances Loring, and Frances Wyle. Some of these people were only rumored to have been queer, but Greyson proceeds with the thesis that they were all gay or bisexual and thus more in tune with each other than with other figures of their time. Piling one audacious idea on top of another, Greyson depicts these figures meeting not in their own time, but in 1987, and assigned with a secret operation—via a self-destructing cassette tape, a la Mission: Impossible—of investigating the history of gay sex in public bathrooms. (Oh yeah, and Oscar Wilde’s character Dorian Gray shows up now and then.) The movie combines not only disparate historical references but also video and celluloid cinematography, narrative and experimental techniques (including some rudimentary computer animation), and philosophy and low humor. At the heart of it is a serious consideration of how the process of social normalization determines how people think about sex and the human body; also central to Greyson’s project is a consideration of how different groups (but specifically homosexuals) have subverted this process in different eras. It’s heady stuff, but never dry or inscrutable—Greyson’s ideas are as lucid as they are provocative. (1988, 100 min, Blu-Ray Projection) BS
More info at http://nightingalecinema.org.
Dudley Murphy's THE EMPEROR JONES (American Revival)
Film Studies Center (at the Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St.) – Saturday, 7pm (Free Admission)
Eugene O'Neill's one-act from 1920 was instrumental in making his career, and Paul Robeson, plucked from relative obscurity to star in a revival of it four years later, rapidly because a stage superstar. In eight scenes, the play follows the titular Brutus Jones as he tries to escape through a moonlit jungle from a mob of Caribbean islanders out to kill him. Six of these scenes comprise a massive monologue by Jones interspersed with hallucinated dumbshows illustrating an unreliable version of his life's story. Through equal parts cunning and cruelty, Jones has managed to set himself up as dictator of a small, impoverished nation, after having killed at least two people in the United States and escaped from prison. Now, having amassed a fortune safely stored offshore, Jones tries to slip out of the country before his subjects murder him. It's a great play: astonishingly intense, emotionally complex, boldly experimental in form. It's also a work of truly repulsive bigotry. Its lines written in a nauseating, dehumanizing dialect and its central character shown as only barely human in intellect, urge, and appetite, O'Neill's play is as flatly indefensible today as a blackface routine. The movie is a different thing altogether. Radically expanded in scope, the movie dramatizes much of what is implied or suggested in the play, invents new characters, scenes, and a decade's worth of backstory for Jones that simply doesn't exist in the O'Neill. Paul Robeson, brought into the production to reprise his role as Brutus Jones, was quite simply the best American actor alive at the time, and he captivates the eye and dominates the frame like a typhoon conquers a beachhead. The way Robeson plays Jones, every muscle, every tendon is stretched as though his body knows what his mind does not--that every coming second could mean either flight or death. The film is built around Robeson's amazing talent, building a mesmerizing, shifting chiaroscuro that surrounds and imprisons him, showing all the world as a dizzying labyrinth of power and betrayal and hubris. Dudley Murphy, a truly great and undersung director (THE SOUL OF THE CYPRESS, BALLET MÉCHANIQUE, BLACK AND TAN, ONE THIRD OF A NATION) stages each scene as a tragedy, each shot as a secret. He has the supporting characters move through space as though they're haunting it, rightfully focusing his incredible kinetic gifts on Robeson, who, under Murphy's direction, creates a Brutus Jones who isn't just tragic but also pitiable, not a caricature or stereotype but an Everyman. Shortly after it was completed, a variety of censorship boards demanded severe cuts, and despite a restoration effort by the Library of Congress, several key sequences have been lost, perhaps permanently. This adds a choppy confusion to quite a few scenes, particularly toward the end, but in no way diminishes the power of Murphy and Robeson's collaboration. (1933, 105 min, Archival 35mm Print) KB
More info at https://filmstudiescenter.uchicago.edu.
Babak Anvari's UNDER THE SHADOW (New International Horror)
Facets Cinematheque - Check Venue website for showtimes
Iranian-born, London-based writer/director Babak Anvari's UNDER THE SHADOW has shocks aplenty, but also something more unsettling: a pervasive dread. An international co-production (UK/Jordan/Qatar/Iran) in which Amman plays Tehran, the film can be described, in shorthand and sensibility, as an Iranian horror film. It's set late in the harrowing eight-year-long Iran-Iraq war, itself coming on the heels of the Cultural Revolution. Denied her dream of going back to medical school because of her youthful political activism, a woman (Narges Rashidi) is left alone with her daughter, Dorsa, when her husband is drafted for medic duty. In the basement of their apartment building, which doubles as a bomb shelter, Dorsa and a mysterious boy whisper. Later, she claims he warned her the djinn, an evil, invisible spirit, is coming. When an unexploded Iraqi missile crashes through the roof of the upstairs apartment, does something wicked blow in with it? As the conservative, superstitious landlord's wife insists, the djinn travel on the wind, looking for someone to possess. Classic haunted-house movie tropes, such as howling wind, thus take on cultural specificity. Nightmare and reality blend. As Dorsa's fever refuses to break, Rashidi's eyes telegraph bone-deep anxiety and weariness as she steeps in a brew of guilt and stress brought on by war, lack of sleep, and a repressive society where you could get turned in for having a VCR. While this modern, educated woman dismisses the "fairy tale" of the djinn, she also refuses to flee the city without Dorsa's missing doll: it's said if the djinn gets ahold of a treasured belonging, you'll always be marked. This movie's howling winds are borne of fears at once personal, political and mythic. (2016, 84 min, Digital Projection – Unconfirmed Format) SP
More info at www.facets.org.
Fred Zinnemann’s FROM HERE TO ETERNITY (American Revival)
Northbrook Public Library (1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook) - Wednesday at 1 and 7:30pm (Free Admission)
Taking place in Hawaii in 1941, FROM HERE TO ETERNITY follows Private Prewitt (Montgomery Clift) and his wrongful mistreatments for refusing to join his company’s inter-unit boxing team, while one of his superiors (Burt Lancaster) falls for their captain’s wife. Fred Zinnemann’s film aims to follow the army at a smaller, more personal level as the looming shadow of WWII lingers ominously. Prewitt, and his refusal to box (due to a prior incident in which he blinded his opponent), serves as an analogy for the USA’s pre-conflict involvement in the war. Despite all instigations and misguided provocations aimed at him, Prewitt (much like America) remains steadfast in his pacifism. Amidst the Korean War that was occurring during the film’s production, Zinnemann’s film takes a pro-war approach. He offers an intimate perspective, which provides an empathetic viewpoint towards the army. Soldiers and those close to them are examined closely in a manner not usually provided during war films. Much like TORA, TORA, TORA, the film truly shines during its scenes depicting the attack that occurred at Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941. Intermixing production footage with actual bombing footage, Zinnemann replicates the horrors of that day in the most realistic way possible. There is a passion that is palpable throughout FROM HERE TO ETERNITY, one that extends beyond the reaches of on-screen romance and fiery tempers. This passion resonates as a form of patriotism and exemplifies the national pride felt during that era. (1953, 118 min, 35mm) KC
More info at www.northbrook.info.
Bill Morrison's THE GREAT FLOOD (Experimental Documentary)
South Side Projections at Blanc Gallery (4445 S. King Dr.) – Wednesday, 7pm (Free Admission)
There are documents embedded in archives, and within those documents is embedded the magic of memory. Although the footage mined by Bill Morrison in this film radiates from the Mississippi river floods of 1927, the mythology of its cascading effect is what fascinates him. Moving across the entire landscape and influence of the great river—from cotton farm to tiny town, from delta mud to Chicago concrete—the score by Bill Frisell and his quartet never steal the scene while gently pulling us through. While the visuals, culled from a laundry list of archival resources, bring us back to the lives of people 90 years ago, it is the Americana Jazz that ties it all together. Largely avoiding the damaged footage featured in his most famous work, DECASIA, Morrison presents the river as the primary character throughout much of the first half of the film. But as people carry their belongings, and themselves, away from the raging water, they become the focus, and the massive effort of human labor is forefront. The film concludes with three sections about Chicago, emphasizing the role that this natural disaster played in the Great Migration. The first of these is a long take of parishioners exiting the Friendship Baptist Church in a steady stream, the most blatant of allegories. The second brings us along for the trip as countless people hitch a ride on the rails, destined for a new life up north. The final scene is a beautiful counterpoint to the hypnotic score, with lively and intimate shots of African-American musicians picking frenetically at guitars. First on an acoustic, then a shiny steel-bodied early electric, before finishing with scenes from patrons dancing at cramped juke joints of yesteryear. And all the while, the slowest and lushest rendition of "Old Man River" you'll ever hear fills the background. History and memory have merged. (2011, 80 min, Blu-Ray Projection) JH
More info at http://southsideprojections.org.
Ben Rivers’ THE SKY TREMBLES AND THE EARTH IS AFRAID AND THE TWO EYES ARE NOT BROTHERS (British Experimental)
Film Studies Center (at the Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St.) – Friday, 7pm (Free Admission)
The films of Ben Rivers are exciting reminders that the cinema is still a young medium, combining elements of narrative, experimental, and documentary filmmaking to tantalizing, unnamable results. At the same time, they feel plucked from an earlier time, as Rivers’ uncanny 16mm photography creates the impression that the films were shot years, even decades ago. THE SKY TREMBLES AND THE EARTH IS AFRAID AND THE TWO EYES ARE NOT BROTHERS, the writer-director-cinematographer-editor’s second proper feature, feels particularly unstuck in time. Not only does it look like it was made in the past, but the ritualistic behavior it features invokes art from the premodern era. The movie begins as an atmospheric making-of documentary, following Spanish director Oliver Laxe as he works on a new film in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco. Rivers renders the settings positively alien and presents intimate details in such a way that they seem larger-than-life. Moody sound design and music add greatly to the experience, transforming the powerful images into full-blown, explorable environments. One never gets acclimated to these spaces, in part because Rivers keeps the onscreen action mysterious throughout. About one-third of the way through, THE SKY TREMBLES switches course and makes a turn into the realm of fiction, as Laxe embarks on a strange journey with some native Moroccans he encounters during his shoot. His experience—part-dream, part-nightmare—serves as a metaphor for cinema’s power to take us to frightening new places. (2016, 95 min, 35mm) BS
More info at https://filmstudiescenter.uchicago.edu.
Sergio Leone's THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY (Italian Revival)
Music Box Theatre – Friday and Saturday, 1pm and Friday-Monday, 8pm
Sergio Leone is to the "spaghetti western," a popular subgenre of American-set westerns made in Europe in the 60s and 70s, what Jean-Pierre Melville is to the French crime film: Leone, like Melville, made outrageously entertaining movies that reflected a punch-drunk love for American genre fare, the conventions of which he inflated to a near-operatic scale after refracting them through his own unique cultural sensibility. And THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY remains the high point of both Leone's career and the spaghetti western in general. It's the third and most ambitious installment of a trilogy (preceded by 1964's A FISTFUL OF DOLLARS and 1965's FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE, both of which also feature Clint Eastwood in his career-defining "Man with No Name" persona) but this Hollywood co-production works perfectly as a stand-alone feature. The plot concerns the misadventures of the title trio (filled out by Lee Van Cleef as the heavy and Eli Wallach, the true heart of the film, as the Mexican bandit Tuco), all of whom are in search of $200,000 in buried gold coins. That these events unfold against the backdrop of a borderline-Surrealist, European's-eye-view of the American Civil War somehow feels ineffably right: Leone's exuberant visual style combines with Ennio Morricone's legendarily innovative score to lend THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY a singular tone that is at once comical, cartoonish, and, in Dave Kehr's astute phrase, "inexplicably moving." (1966, 161 min, DCP Digital; New Restoration) MGS
More info at www.musicboxtheatre.com.
MORE SCREENINGS AND EVENTS
The Chicago International Film Festival opens on Thursday with a screening of Damien Chazelle’s 2016 film LA LA LAND (128 min) at the AMC River East 21 (322 E. Illinois St.). The film is at 7:30pm. A pre-film reception is at 5pm (higher ticket price; see CIFF website for details). The festival continues through October 27. Full schedule at www.chicagofilmfestival.com.
The Nightingale (1084 N. Milwaukee Ave.) presents The Embedded Documentaries of Eva Marie Rødbro is on Tuesday at 7pm, showing as part of the Run of Life series, with Rødbro in person. Screening are: FUCK YOU KISS ME (2008, 6 min), I TOUCHED HER LEGS (2010, 15 min), KRIGER (2013, 25 min), DAN MARK
(2014, 30 min), and
WE CHOSE THE MILKY WAY (2015, 28 min).
Chicago Filmmakers (5243 N. Clark St.) presents a program of work by local filmmakers Mike Lopez and Jimmy Schaus on Saturday at 8pm, with the filmmakers in person.
The Conversations at the Edge series at the Gene Siskel Film Center presents Temporary Highs on Thursday at 6pm. Screening are works by Pascual Sisto, Addie Wagenknecht, Petra Cortright, and others. With the screening’s curator, Lindsay Howard, in person. More info at saic.edu/cate.
Block Cinema (Northwestern University) screens Masud Kimiai’s 1969 Iranian film QAISAR (100 min, Digital Projection) on Friday at 5pm (Free Admission) and Dariush Mehrjui’s 1969 Iranian film THE COW (100 min, DCP Digital) on Friday at 7pm; and on Thursday at 7pm, Gordon Parks Jr.’s 1974 “Blaxploitation” film THREE THE HARD WAY (105 min, 16mm), with actor Fred Williamson in person. Free admission.
Also at South Side Projections this week: Jim Morrison, Stewart Bird, Peter Gessner, René Lichtman, and John Louis Jr.’s 1970 documentary FINALLY GOT THE NEWS (57 min, DVD Projection) screens on Sunday at 7pm at the Stony Island Arts Bank (6760 S. Stony Island) as part of their “Alternative Histories of Labor” series. Followed by a panel discussion.
Roots & Culture (1034 N. Milwaukee Ave.) presents Double Exposure: Calum Walter & Nellie Kluz on Sunday at 7:30pm. The local artists will screen a selection of their works. Free admission.
Showboat (2058 W. 21st St.) presents Boat Show #2: Milky Corpus on Saturday at 8pm. The program includes: Eva Marie Rødbro’s I TOUCHED HER LEGS (2010) and WE CHOSE THE MILKY WAY (2015), Peter Tscherkassky’s THE EXQUISITE CORPUS (2015), Pat O'Neil’s RUNS GOOD (1970), and Shambhavi Kaul’s MOUNT SONG (2013). Eva Marie Rødbro will be in person. Digital Projection.
The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago screens Van Neistat’s 2015 film A SPACE PROGRAM (72 min, Unconfirmed Format), about artist Tom Sachs’ conceptual artwork “Space Program 2.0,” on Thursday at 6pm, with Sachs in person.
Comfort Film at Comfort Station Logan Square (2579 N. Milwaukee Ave.) screens Peter Semelka’s 1978 horror film TEENALIEN (THE VARROW MISSION) (88 min, VHS Projection) on Wednesday at 8pm. Free admission.
Also at the Northbrook Public Library (1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook) this week: Woody Allen’s 2016 film CAFÉ SOCIETY (96 min, DCP Digital) screens on Saturday at 2 and 7:30pm. Free admission.
At the Gene Siskel Film Center this week: Robert Kenner’s 2016 documentary COMMAND AND CONTROL (92 min, DCP Digital), Pieter van Huystee’s 2015 documentary HIERONYMUS BOSCH: TOUCHED BY THE DEVIL (85 min, DCP Digital), and Ira Sachs’ 2016 drama LITTLE MEN (85 min, DCP Digital) all play for a week; Diego Luna’s 2016 Mexican film MR. PIG (100 min, DCP Digital) is on Friday at 6pm and Saturday at 8pm; Carlos Reygadas’ 2005 Mexican film BATTLE IN HEAVEN (98 min, DigiBeta Video) is on Saturday at 5pm and Tuesday at 6pm (with a lecture by SAIC professor Daniel R. Quiles at the Tuesday show); Alejandro Iglesias’ 2015 Mexican film LEAF BLOWER (90 min, DCP Digital) is on Sunday at 4:45pm and Monday at 7:45pm; and João Botelho’s 2016 Portuguese documentary/narrative film CINEMA, MANOEL DE OLIVEIRA AND ME (80 min, DCP Digital) is on Wednesday at 6pm.
Also at Doc Films (University of Chicago) this week: Dan Kwan and Daniel Scheinert’s 2016 film SWISS ARMY MAN (97 min, DCP Digital) is on Saturday at 7 and 9pm and Sunday at 4pm; Victor Fleming’s 1939 classic THE WIZARD OF OZ (101 min, 35mm) is on Monday at 7pm; Gina Angelone, Mouna Stewart, and Patrick Alexander Stewart’s 2013 Palestinian film IT’S BETTER TO JUMP (75 min, DCP Digital; Free Admission) is on Tuesday at 7pm; Pedro Almodovar’s 1995 film THE FLOWER OF MY SECRET (103 min, 35mm) is on Wednesday at 7 and 9:30pm; Satoshi Kon’s 2006 Japanese animated film PAPRIKA (90 min, 35mm) is on Thursday at 7pm; and Chuck Russell’s 1988 film THE BLOB (95 min, 35mm) is on Thursday at 9pm.
Also at the Music Box Theatre this week: James Ivory’s 1992 film HOWARDS END (142 min, DCP Digital; New Restoration) opens; Ron Howard’s 2016 documentary THE BEATLES: EIGHT DAYS A WEEK – THE TOURING YEARS (138 min, DCP Digital) continues; Hideaki Anno’s 2016 Japanese film SHIN GODZILLA (120 min, DCP Digital) screens Tuesday-Thursday; Wes Craven’s 1984 film A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET (91 min, 35mm) and Jim Hosking’s 2016 film THE GREASY STRANGLER (93 min, Unconfirmed Format) are on Friday and Saturday at Midnight.
Also at Facets Cinémathèque this week: Michel Franco’s 2015 French/Mexican film CHRONIC (107 min, Unconfirmed Format) plays for a week-long run.
The Chicago Cultural Center hosts the Asian Pop-Up Cinema screening of Eddie Cahyono’s 2014 Indonesian film SITI (88 min, Video Projection – Unconfirmed Format) on Wednesday at 7pm. Free admission.
ONGOING FILM/VIDEO INSTALLATIONS
SAIC’s Sullivan Galleries (33 S. State St., 7th Floor) screens local filmmaker Jim Trainor’s 2016 live-action feature THE PINK EGG through October 15 (showing daily, Tuesdays-Saturdays, at 11am, 12:15pm, 1:30pm, 2:45pm, and 4:15pm). Free admission.
Camille Henrot’s 2013 video GROSSE FATIGUE (14 min) is on view at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago through December 18.
Block Museum (Northwestern University) presents Salaam Cinema! 50 Years of Iranian Movie Posters through December 11.
Iceberg Gallery (7714 N. Sheridan Rd.) presents George Kuchar: Bocko through October 30. The show includes Kuchar’s 1978 film THE MONGRELOID, paintings, and photographic ephemera—all related to Kuchar’s pet dog Bocko.
The Renaissance Society (5811 S. Ellis Ave., Cobb Hall, University of Chicago) presents a solo show of UK filmmaker Ben Rivers’ moving image works, Urth, through November 6.
The Art Institute of Chicago presents Ragnar Kjartansson and the National's single-channel video work A LOT OF SORROW (2014, 6 hours 9 min looping) through October 17.