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|a weekly guide to alternative cinema- -
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:: Friday, MAR. 7 -
Thursday, MAR. 13 ::
European Union Film Festival
Gene Siskel Film Center
The Film Center's annual European Union Film Festival opens on Friday and continues through April 3. Among the fourteen films showing this week are the Opening Night selection, Elina Pyskou's 2013 Greek film THE ETERNAL RETURN OF ANTONIS PARASKEVAS, Pawel Pawlikowski's highly regarded Polish film IDA, and our highlighted picks below.
Ben Rivers and Ben Russell's A SPELL TO WARD OFF DARKNESS (Estonia/France)
Saturday, 9:15pm and Thursday, 6pm
A SPELL TO WARD OFF DARKNESS is one of those rare movies that allows a viewer to simultaneously sink into the world it creates while thinking critically about its premise. Musician and Chicago-ex-pat Robert AA Lowe acts a guides through three different ways of orienting oneself to the outside world: in community, in solitary, or in artistic practice. The audience watches him spend time in an bustling collective, traverse an old growth forest, and perform in a mesmerizing set by Norwegian black metal band Queequeg (which includes Liturgy's Hunter Hunt-Hendrix). Rivers and Russell blend an observational documentary mode with inventive shot composition and marathon long takes to create lush, engaging visual scenarios. All three segments seem to float above everyday life in a swell of leisure--potent fantasies of other ways of living. (2013, 95 min, DCP Digital Projection) CL
Joaquim Pinto's WHAT NOW? REMIND ME (Portugal)
Saturday, 2:15pm and Wednesday, 7:30pm
Portuguese director Joaquim Pinto's almost three-hour tour de force WHAT NOW? REMIND ME is partly an essay film and partly a documentary, with elements of experimental filmmaking thrown into the mix; it's a virtually undefinable work whose origins are rooted only in the maker's soul. Pinto has lived with HIV and Hepatitis C for almost two decades, and the film documents a period of time in Pinto's life during which he undergoes an experimental treatment. The film's style is symbolic as it relates to Pinto's medical care; just as his treatment is empirical in nature, so, too, is the effusive manner in which he assembles the pseudo-narrative. The film's unresolved ending is a perfect metaphor for the conclusiveness of Pinto's aspirations. In an essay for Cinema Scope, critic Francisco Ferreira enthusiastically ponders the implications of the film's final scene as the credits roll over a series of long takes featuring a truck full of turkeys on the highway: "This image functions as a coda for an everyday life that has become fantastic, a life experience that has become unmeasured. It recalls a moment in the Instituto de Medicina Molecular in Lisbon where Pinto says he would loved to have filmed the life of a virus, but due to this impossibility, he filmed work: in other words, a film has to search for what is microscopic to reach the absolute. There's something precious to learn from this gesture: to never give up." (2013, 164 min, DCP Digital Projection) KS
Calin Peter Netzer's CHILD'S POSE (Romania)
Just as Asghar Farhadi's 2011 film A SEPARATION was discussed by critics in terms of a Hitchcockian thriller, so, too, could Calin Peter Netzer's enormously accomplished CHILD'S POSE be thought of in those terms. In the film, Luminita Gheorghiu (who had a significant role in Cristi Puiu's 2005 film THE DEATH OF MR. LARZARESCU) plays Cornelia, a poised aristocrat whose son has accidentally killed a child while speeding on the freeway. Much like A SEPARATION, CHILD'S POSE is a domestic drama in which the everyday lives of its protagonists are disrupted by an event that toes the line between circumstance and negligence, and just as in A SEPARATION, there's a latent intimation that, while everyone's morality is being called into question, no one is truly at fault. (Or, possible, everyone is somehow at fault.) However, this benign premise is shrouded in the distinct sense of tension that characterizes Hitchcock's best thrillers. Also similar to Hitchcock's films is the presence of a domineering mother (complete with faded platinum blonde hair) with a son whose emotional detachment to his fatal actions is ascribed to her oppressive demeanor. Shaky hand-held camera movements and seemingly jaundiced cinematography add further dimensions to a thriller that is one of the best films to emerge from the Romanian New Wave in recent years. (2013, 112 min, DCP Digital Projection) KS
Ramon Zürcher's THE STRANGE LITTLE CAT (Germany)
Saturday, 5:30pm and Wednesday, 6pm
Minus credits, THE STRANGE LITTLE CAT clocks in at just over an hour. A slender film, but by no means slight, this economical portrait of an unnamed middle-class Berlin household has the assured pacing of a film typically three times its length. Over the course of an afternoon, as varied extended family members reunite, we are treated to the mundanities of a lazy Sunday: prepping food, fixing the washing machine, and letting grandma have her nap. This is cinema at the pace of life lived, and these small moments are deftly portrayed, sharing with us just enough to produce a feeling of warm familiarity. Though you may have just barely warmed your seat, you will have spent a decade sitting at the family's kitchen table. (2013, 72 min, DCP Digital Projection) DM
Guido van Driel's RESURRECTION OF A BASTARD (Netherlands)
Saturday, 5:15pm and Monday, 6pm
Dutch artist Guido van Driel adapts his 2004 graphic novel Om mekaar in Dokkum in this his debut feature. Like Ronnie, its lead character, RESURRECTION OF A BASTARD seems to be suffering a dissociative breakdown. The movie is at once a metaphysical reflection on memory and regret, and a stylized revenge drama in the vein of Ritchie, Refn, and Glazer's gangster efforts. Driel admits in interviews that he pitched RESURRECTION "as a mix of Tarantino and Tarkovsky," and while the movie delivers on that promise quite literally--there's both a scene where Ronnie and Co. pluck an associate's eye out with a vacuum cleaner, and a scene where characters sit silently amongst the undulating leaves of a windblown tree--it never quite manages to synthesize these influences into a distinct identity. To Driel's credit though RESURRECTION does periodically deliver surreal moments of both beauty and utter revulsion with an assurance rarely seen in a debut feature. (2013, 85 min, DCP Digital Projection) JS
For more info and a complete schedule, visit www.siskelfilmcenter.org.
Andy Warhol's TARZAN AND JANE, REGAINED ... SORT OF (Experimental Revival)
Gene Siskel Film Center - Tuesday, 6pm
What to make of this anomalous and absurd film? As the title itself suggests, it's a very tentative thing--a Warhol movie made before Warhol himself had a clear idea of what that might entail. TARZAN AND JANE, REGAINED ... SORT OF was shot quickly on a 1963 trip to Los Angeles, site of a Warhol show at the Ferus Gallery, after Warhol had finished photographing his first film SLEEP, but before that footage had been developed or edited. It premiered at the New Bowery Theater in February 1964, following a serialized run of Warhol's KISS at the Gramercy Arts Theater the previous autumn. The cutting and sound mixing of TARZAN AND JANE were handled by hunky leading man Taylor Mead back on the East Coast, raising the perennial but essentially misleading question about Warhol's contribution to his own work. ("Oh, it's Warhol all right...in the sense that he'd film no matter what's going on in front of the camera," assured Paul Morrissey, who would build a career out of slyly claiming credit for Warhol's films, upon re-viewing TARZAN AND JANE.) If TARZAN AND JANE doesn't much resemble Warhol's other films, that's hardly an accident. Indeed, one suspects that Warhol needed to experiment with "narrative" filmmaking to observe and internalize its pitfalls and limitations. The lessons of SLEEP--that each individual shot contains unbearable density and suspense, that editing rhythms can be elongated until their impact becomes subliminal and supersensory, that duration itself invited new forms of engagement--were still nascent and mysterious. TARZAN AND JANE, practically structured around blackout sketches, somewhat resembles Adolfas Mekas' HALLELUJAH THE HILLS--a cheeky but essentially innocent bid for feature-length notoriety at a moment when the future of cinema looked wide open. The film exists today as a fascinating road-not-taken, as well as a showcase for West Coast artists and literary luminaries--Wallace Berman, Claes Oldenburg, Dennis Hopper (himself one of the first collectors of Warhol's work). As I recall, it also features one hell of a jungle gym. Introduced by SAIC professor Bruce Jenkins, who will lead a post-film discussion as well. (1964, 80 min, 16mm) KAW
More info at www.siskelfilmcenter.org.
Hou Yao's ROMANCE OF THE WESTERN CHAMBER and Shi Dongshan's TWO STARS IN THE MILKY WAY (Silent Chinese Revivals)
Film Studies Center (University of Chicago) at the Logan Center for the Arts (915 E. 60th St.) - Friday, 7pm (Free Admission)
I would hazard that most cinephiles have not seen any Chinese films earlier than Mu Fei's acclaimed 1948 film SPRING IN A SMALL TOWN, and more likely nothing before the 1980s. This screening of two films from the 1920s and 30s is quite a rare treat, then. Pre-WWII Chinese cinema was heavily influenced by American formal qualities and narrative structures, and these two films reflect that. If you are looking for un-Hollywood qualities seen in Japanese and Soviet films of the same time, you'll be disappointed. But, both films are solid and charming romances and each displays some moments of formal inventiveness. ROMANCE OF THE WESTERN CHAMBER (1927), by Hou Yao, is based on a classical tale from the Yuan Dynasty (1234-1368). It concerns a courtier's daughter, a young scholar, and a bandit attack. The print showing (a reportedly lovely tinted 35mm archival print from EYE International in the Netherlands) is an abridged version cut for European distribution (seemingly the only extant version). Luckily a dynamic battle scene (including wonderfully kinetic close-up shots of sabers clashing) and a surreal dream sequence remain. Shi Dongshan's TWO STARS IN THE MILKY WAY (1931) is a contemporary-set film about a young singer discovered in the countryside and brought to the city to star in a period film. A budding romance with her leading man develops, but complications arise (of course). Shi peppers the fairly conventional narrative with some striking compositions and use of lighting. Neither film is a revelation, but both are quite good, and fascinating glimpses into a corner of World Cinema that is too little seen. And, for emphasis--an imported, tinted, archival 35mm print of a 1927 silent Chinese film! Live musical accompaniment by Donald Sosin. Introduction by Visiting Scholar Kristine Harris, Associate Professor of History and Asian Studies at the State University of New York and New Paltz. (1927, approx. 49-57 min, Archival 35mm Print / 1931, 86 min, Digital File Projection) PF
More info at filmstudiescenter.uchicago.edu.
Robert Rossen's BODY AND SOUL (American Revival) + Introduction and Talk by Critic J. Hoberman
Block Cinema (Northwestern University) - Saturday, 2pm
Despite his considerable stage success in Clifford Odets's boxing saga GOLDEN BOY, John Garfield was passed over for the 1939 screen version. Rouben Mamoulian's tedious and impersonal adaptation rested on the starchy shoulders of goy toy William Holden, who provided a nondescript anchor to the vaguely ethnic distress that ringed the drama's periphery. Meanwhile, Warner Bros. groomed Garfield (né Jacob Julius Garfinkle) as a coyly generic romantic foil in junk like FOUR DAUGHTERS, while simultaneously and covertly promoting him in the Jewish press as B'nai B'rith's tinsel town emissary. An actor whose Jewishness was essentially invisible to the Gentile audience for the first decade of his career, Garfield was constantly taking two steps forward and one back professionally: he provided amply decorous body heat in M-G-M loan-out THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE, but the explicitly Jewish source material for HUMORESQUE was whitewashed into an insufferably self-important vehicle for Joan Crawford. Upon the expiration of his Warner Bros. contract, Garfield entered into a partnership with producer Bob Roberts at Enterprise, the short-lived independent outfit that can lay claim to only nine released features. (We can quibble about Enterprise's business acumen, but not its taste, as that roster includes BODY AND SOUL, Polonsky and Garfield's follow-up FORCE OF EVIL, Ophuls' CAUGHT, de Toth's RAMROD, Fleischer's SO THIS IS NEW YORK, and Milestone's costly fiasco ARCH OF TRIUMPH.) Whether or not Garfield--who would be silenced within five years, hectored into heart failure by HUAC--conceived of BODY AND SOUL as a second shot at GOLDEN BOY, the parallels are unmistakable. Inhabiting his signature role as a slum savant torn between old-world family expectations and the gangsters of modernity, Garfield's struggles are largely outside the boxing ring. Capable of recognizing the ramifications of his actions upon his community in ways that his GOLDEN BOY counterpart cannot, Garfield's Charley Davis is even lionized by his neighbors as the strapping Jewish American answer to Nazi genocide. Though the ethnic pride is still somewhat muted overall, it's a remarkable step up from HUMORESQUE. (By year's end, Garfield would provide the only authentically Jewish note to Fox's big-budget anti-Semitism showcase, GENTLEMAN'S AGREEMENT.) The political message of BODY AND SOUL hardly reaches beyond elementary Popular Front solidarity. Nevertheless BODY AND SOUL is the product of the most concentrated radical energy ever seen in Hollywood: beyond Garfield, director Robert Rossen, writer Abraham Polonsky, and actors Anne Revere, Lloyd Gough, and Canada Lee all eventually wound up in the crosshairs of the blacklist. The considerable artistry and craft elevate the familiar storyline, imbuing it with new context and urgency. Introduced by New York Times contributor and long-time Village Voice critic J. Hoberman, who will offer a post-screening lecture on the connections between Judaism and the radical left. (1947, 104 min, Restored 35mm Print) KAW
More info at www.blockmuseum.northwestern.edu.
George Cukor's THE PHILADELPHIA STORY (American Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) - Monday, 7pm
A quintessential example of what Stanley Cavell has termed the "comedy of remarriage," THE PHILADELPHIA STORY challenged the restrictions of the Hays Code by suggesting the possibility of polyamorous love. The narrative follows the formulaic trajectory of the genre from divorce to inevitable reunion, but the film's genius lies in its subliminal remarks on censorship via Cukor's use of off-screen space, as the characters take turns spying and eavesdropping on one another. Due to the static, two-dimensional nature of his compositions, environments often feel enclosed to both the characters (and by extension the viewers) when they're actually vulnerable to spectatorship, blurring the lines between private/public space. Though Cukor uses camera movement sparingly, he does so to great effect, providing his scenes with a humorous or startling punctuation mark; characters are constantly hiding behind columns, hovering discreetly in corners, or peeking through windows. This pattern of constant surveillance provides an amusing endnote for the film's finale when an unknown photographer snaps a photo of the wedding. The violation of the private (i.e. monogamous) sphere is emblematic of the paranoia that would later become a hallmark of 1940s film noir, but also parallels Cukor's sidestepping of uptight MPAA provisions. These themes can be situated within the broader context of marriage plot literature that deals with issues of physical and psychological boundaries in an aristocratic milieu, such and Henry James' Portrait of a Lady, as well as theoretical works like Foucault's writings on panopticism and Gaston Bachlelard's The Poetics of Space. (1940, 112 min, 35mm) HS
More info at www.docfilms.uchicago.edu.
George Cukor's HOLIDAY (American Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) - Monday, 9:30pm
[Rescheduled screening of last week's cancelled show]
George Cukor directed a number of great movies, but none of them balance humor and pathos as beautifully as HOLIDAY. Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn play star-crossed lovers united by a desire to transcend the rigor of high society as represented by Hepburn's repressive old-money family. What starts as screwball comedy becomes something more adult and poignant, colored by what Dave Kehr calls "Cukor's serious concern for the ways in which we choose to live our lives." Like much of the director's best work, this was adapted from a Broadway play, a Philip Barry hit from ten years earlier. Cukor clearly loved the material: He rehearsed the actors until they knew the characters inside and out, which enabled him to shoot longer takes that retained the rhythm of Barry's writing--and besides, these performances are so three-dimensional they don't need to be enhanced with editing. It's only through his deep understanding of theatrical conventions that Cukor could produce something so vitally cinematic. This film may be revived often, but you owe it to yourself to go if you haven't seen this on a big screen. The elegance here, both in image and in spirit, virtually defines Hollywood glamour. (1938, 95 min, 35mm) BS
More info at www.docfilms.uchicago.edu.
Werner Herzog's THE BAD LIEUTENANT: PORT OF CALL NEW ORLEANS (Contemporary American)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) - Thursday, 9:15pm
It's not really worth wondering why Herzog borrowed the title and the parameters for this film from a film that he claims to have no interest in seeing. The screenplay by William Finkelstein (previously a writer of television procedural drama,) is so categorically bananas that any self-respecting Herzog would have to say yes, whatever the source material. And as a result we have conclusive evidence that the man is funny on purpose; this post-Katrina police drama is actually the most gonzo of comedies. Characters perform sadism and altruism with equal bravado. When the moment is right, the plot believes in fate and happy endings, but it just as readily gives over to randomness, blankness, and chaos. What distinguishes BAD LIEUTENANT from the rest of Herzog's already stupefying canon is its unhinged lightness, its total absorption in each passing moment, and its intuitive readiness to try whatever the moment requires. When Nicolas Cage's Sergeant McDonagh fails to bribe a highway patrolman, the camera suddenly flops down to crocodile-eye view and wriggles away through the grass. When McDonagh is high, which is often, a whole scene's pace slows slurringly to accommodate his impaired reaction time. We've had tastes of this spontaneity before, as in THE WHITE DIAMOND when Herzog loses interest in his aviating subject halfway through the film and takes up with a Guyanese Rastafarian. And in WHEEL OF TIME, Herzog made a sincere inquiry of Buddhist philosophy and the changing nature of all things. But the focus of his films has often been as single-minded as that of Little Dieter or Brian Sweeney Fitzgerald, so this loose playfulness feels like a maturation. Gone is the ambiguously ironic chest thumping of a masculine protagonist ("I'm eating this boot because I don't like cowards"), instead McDonagh is a compassionate but decadent guy with a limp and a pervert's haircut who is frequently possessed by shameful demons. Cage has plenty of time to play the hero in this film, but the moments of glory don't compromise his thoroughly unself-conscious portrayal of a vain man in turmoil. Comparing this performance to work by Klaus Kinski does both actors and the director a disservice, just as comparisons to Abel Ferrara's movie are reductive and unhelpful. You could describe their various performances using similar language, but why look backward? It would suggest that Herzog is pursuing the same madness with the same old focus, which is clearly not the case. (2009, 122 min, 35mm) JF
More info at www.docfilms.uchicago.edu.
Carlos Reygadas' SILENT LIGHT (Contemporary Mexican)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) - Sunday, 7pm
JAPON (2002) and BATTLE IN HEAVEN (2005) established Carlos Reygadas as one of the most ambitious directors to emerge this decade, if not one of the most contentious. His films draw liberally from the work of Andrei Tarkovsky, Werner Herzog, and Abbas Kiarostami (filmmakers he's channeled in proclamations about liberating cinema from the burden of narrative), but never derivatively, combining familiar elements of art cinema and painting in a consistently surprising style--and one that's often pointedly critical of contemporary Mexican life. SILENT LIGHT (a.k.a. STELLET LICHT) manages to confound even those accustomed to the provocations of his first two films. It's a solemn, often heartbreaking fable about romantic love among religious piety and is marked by some of the finest nature photography of recent movies. Shot in a Medieval German dialect and acted by non-professionals, SILENT LIGHT is set in a Mennonite community in northern Mexico where ritual austerity seems to have given way to heartfelt sincerity and oneness with nature. A devoted husband and father, Johan, has been having an affair with another woman, yet his devotion to the community keeps him from hiding anything from beguiled friends and family. Reygadas doesn't color the story with interpretation but, rather, permeates it with a religious sense of mystery akin to what his characters must be feeling. The results are hypnotic and altogether gorgeous, and its underlying mysteries (not least that of faith itself) stay with you for long after you watch it. As J. Hoberman put it in his Village Voice review: "Everything in this relatively chaste production is monumentally deliberate, from the human interactions to the stolidly bucolic representation of Mennonite domesticity to the extraordinary, wide-screen landscape shots that bracket the action with four or five minutes of pantheist ecstasy." (2007, 136 min, DVD Projection) BS
More info at www.docfilms.uchicago.edu.
Michelangelo Antonioni's RED DESERT (Italian Revival)
Italian Cultural Institute (500 N Michigan Ave.) - Tuesday, 6pm (Free Admission)
Antonioni's first film in color (and how!) begins deliberately out-of-focus; it seems as though the theater projectionist has erred until the credits appear fully legible. There are plenty of similar tricks throughout RED DESERT, which befits the theme of humanity's disorientation from modern life. Various settings--namely the chemical plant owned by the heroine's husband--suggest science-fiction until the film reveals their real, albeit arcane, function; and major sequences begin without explaining how the characters arrived and end without suggesting they're going. For several films, the director had innovated formal strategies to convey the transience and spiritual poverty of industrial society: In L'AVVENTURA (1960), he famously had the main character disappear from the film one-third of the way in, never to return; and the final seven minutes of L'ECLISSE (1963) removed people from its urban setting entirely. But RED DESERT represents the full-on Antonionification of the world, a film in which individuals make little impact on their surroundings, whether they inhabit them or not. (Hence the quiet heartbreak of the film's conclusion, which some viewers misinterpret as anticlimax: the heroine simply realizes there's nowhere for her to escape to.) Monica Vitti's Giuliana has recognized this crisis, and her failure to respond to it has driven her to madness. The film depicts an unspecified period following her release from a sanitarium, a series of abortive attempts at emotional connection. Giuliana stares abjectly at a factory workers' strike, a monumental new device that will allow people, ironically, to "listen to the stars," and an aristocratic party that fails to transform into an orgy. The last of these accounts for one of the great sequences of Antonioni's career, and it alone is worth the price of admission. (Needless to say, this new 35mm print is not to be missed.) It's staged in a shipyard shack where Giuliana and several of her husband's friends--including the introspective engineer (Richard Harris) with whom she's contemplating an affair--have retreated for an extended bacchanal. The two-room structure becomes a microcosm for the already-cloistered world of the shamefully rich; and within Antonioni's masterful frames it becomes as frightfully imposing as any of the giant industrial structures owned by any of the characters. The camera finds numerous snaky passages through the space, time itself seems to have been elongated; these characters, so full of imagination and drive, transform the space into a little paradise. But the air turns chilly the following morning, and the men and women proceed to demolish the wooden walls and furniture to add to the furnace. As Giuliana (and Antonioni himself) knows all too well, the heedless expedition of pleasure gives way to destruction and leaves a gaping absence in its wake. (1964, 118 min, Video Projection - Unconfirmed Format) BS
More info at www.iicchicago.esteri.it.
MORE SCREENINGS AND EVENTS
The Chicago Film Seminar event this month features Michael DeAngelis (DePaul), who will present the paper "Reading the Bromance." Nick Davis (Northwestern) is the respondent. Free admission. The event is on Thursday at 6:30pm at the DePaul University Loop Campus (The Daley Building, 14 E. Jackson Blvd., Room LL 102; use the entrance at 247 S. State St.). Free admission.
The Nightingale (1084 N. Milwaukee Ave.) presents the 2014 screening/performance event Process/Progress (approx. 40 min) by No One Is Anywhere (Rory Murphy and Stephanie Acosta) on Sunday at 7pm.
The Logan Square International Film Series presents Kartemquin Films Screening & Discussion on Wednesday at 7pm at Comfort Station in Logan Square (2579 N. Milwaukee Ave.).
The Art Institute of Chicago (Rubloff Auditorium) presents the performance event Loose Booty on Thursday at 7pm. The program will include a performance by jazz musicians Milford Graves and Joe McPhee, a reading by writer and punk progenitor Richard Hell, and a screening of James Nares' 2012 video STREET (61 min, Video Projection - Unconfirmed Format), with ex-Sonic Youth musician Thurston Moore performing his score for the film live.
Gallery 400 (UIC, 400 S. Peoria St.) presents a screening of MFA student Melissa Myser titled The Home Terms Still Apply on Thursday at 7pm. The program features six short 16mm, 16mm double projection, and video works from 2011-14. Free admission.
At Chicago Filmmakers (5243 N. Clark St.) this week: Local filmmaker Jack C. Newell's 2012 film CLOSE QUARTERS (88 min, Video Projection - Unconfirmed Format) is on Friday at 7:30pm, with select filmmakers in person; and Dorothy Arzner's 1932 drama MERRILY WE GO TO HELL (88 min, Video Projection) screens on Saturday at 8pm (7pm social hour) as part of the Dyke Delicious series. The film only repeats on Wednesday at 6:30pm at Columbia College (Hokin Hall, 623 S. Wabash, Room 109).
The Northwest Chicago Film Society (at the Patio Theater) screens Ben Hecht, Charles MacArthur, and Lee Garmes' 1934 film CRIME WITHOUT PASSION (80 min, 35mm) on Wednesday at 7:30pm.
Also at Block Cinema (Northwestern University) this week: Rouben Mamoulian's 1931 film CITY STREETS (83 min, 35mm) screens on Friday at 7pm.
At the Gene Siskel Film Center this week: the EU Festival and Andy Warhol's TARZAN AND JANE REGAINED ... SORT OF. See the top of the list and Crucial Viewing respectively.
Also at Doc Films (University of Chicago) this week: Tim Burton's 2007 film SWEENEY TODD: THE DEMON BARBER OF FLEET STREET (116 min, 35mm) is on Friday at 7 and 9:30pm and Sunday at 1pm; Steve McQueen's 2013 film 12 YEARS A SLAVE (134 min, DCP Digital Projection) is on Saturday at 7 and 9:45pm and Sunday at 3:30pm; Chang Cheh's 1974 film THE MEN FROM THE MONESTERY (92 min, 35mm) is on Tuesday at 7pm; Brian De Palma's 2002 film FEMME FATALE (114 min, 35mm) is on Wednesday at 7 and 9:30pm; and Ava DuVernay's 2012 film MIDDLE OF NOWHERE (97 min, DCP Digital Projection) is on Thursday at 7pm.
At the Music Box Theatre this week: Chiemi Karasawa's 2013 documentary ELAINE STRITCH: SHOOT ME (80 min) opens; Alain Guiraudie's 2013 film STRANGER BY THE LAKE (100 min) and Paolo Sorrentino's 2013 film THE GREAT BEAUTY (142 min, DCP Digital Projection) both continue; the Chicago Irish Film Festival present two programs on Saturday at 7:30 and 9:30pm; Raoul Walsh's 1928 silent film SADIE THOMPSON (97 min, 35mm) is on Saturday at Noon, with live organ accompaniment by Dennis Scott; Alfred Hitchcock's 1934 film THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH (75 min, DCP Digital Projection) is on Saturday and Sunday at 11:30pm; and Paul Thomas Anderson's 1997 film BOOGIE NIGHTS (155 min, 35mm) and Hideaki Anno, Mahiro Maeda, Masayuki, and Kazuya Tsurumaki's 2012 anime EVANGELION 3.0: YOU CAN (NOT) REDO (96 min, Blu-Ray Projection) are on Friday and Saturday at Midnight. Unconfirmed Formats, except where noted.
Facets Cinémathèque plays Scott Coffey's 2013 comedy ADULT WORLD (97 min, Unconfirmed Format) for a week; and holds over Arnaud Desplechin's 2013 drama JIMMY P. (PSYCHOTHERAPY OF A PLAINS INDIAN) (114 min, Unconfirmed Format) for two screenings, on Saturday at 2:30pm and Sunday at 12:45pm.
The Logan Theatre screens Harold Ramis' 1980 comedy CADDYSHACK (98 min, Unconfirmed Format) on Friday, Saturday, and Monday at 10:30pm.
Percolator Films hosts a screening of Bill Siegel's 2013 documentary THE TRIALS OF MUHAMMAD ALI (86 min, Video Projection - Unconfirmed Format) on Tuesday at 7pm at the Evanston Public Library (1703 Orrington, Evanston), followed by a Q&A with director Siegel and producer Rachel Pikelny.
The Chicago Cultural Center screens Pawel Pawlikowski' 2004 drama MY SUMMER LOVE (86 min, Video Projection - Unconfirmed Format) on Wednesday at 6:30pm, as part of the Cinema Q series; and the Peace on Earth Film Festival continues on Friday-Sunday. Free admission.
The DuSable Museum screens Robert Child's 2011 drama THE WERETH ELEVEN (70 min, Unconfirmed Format) on Friday at 7pm.
At the Chicago Public Library this week: Nisha Pahuja's 2012 documentary THE WORLD BEFORE HER (90 min, Video Projection - Unconfirmed Format) is at the Edgewater Branch (6000 N. Broadway St.) on Saturday at Noon; and Nirit Peled's 2009 documentary SAY MY NAME (73 min, Video Projection - Unconfirmed Format) is at the Greater Grand Crossing Branch (1000 E. 73rd St.) on Wednesday at 6pm. Free admission for both.
ONGOING FILM/VIDEO INSTALLATIONS
The President's Gallery at Harold Washington College (30 E. Lake St.) presents Demons, Snake-Girls & Evil Trees: Handpainted Ghanaian Movie Posters from the Odd Obsession Collection. The exhibition is on view through March 30. A separate grouping of posters will also be on view at Odd Obsession Movies (1822 N. Milwaukee Ave.).
The Logan Center for the Arts (915 E. 60th St.) continues the exhibition Yang Fudong: East of Que Village. The show, which features a selection of video work by the Chinese artist, is on view until March 30.
Carrie Secrist Gallery (835 W Washington Blvd.) continues an installation of Michael Robinson's 2013 experimental video THE DARK, KRYSTLE through March 15.
Public Works (1539 N. Damen Ave.) continues the show Only Real through April 4. Included are works by Peter Jellitsch (his "Data Drawings," hand-drawn diagrammatic landscapes) and Theodore Darst, whose video and installation work "Collag[es] fragments of personal narratives through the endless variables of the digital interface."
The Art Institute of Chicago has two video installations currently running. Isaac Julien's The Long Road to Mazatlán is on view until March 30 (Gallery 186) and Amar Kanwar's The Lightning Testimonies is on view until April 20 (Gallery 291).
The Museum of Contemporary Art continues Chicago Works: Lilli Carré through April 15, 2014. The show includes a video work by Carré.
The Museum of Contemporary Art continues City Self through April 13. The show includes Sarah Morris's 2011 film Chicago.
The Northbrook Public Library film series is on hiatus during renovation at the library.
The Portage Theatre remains closed for the foreseeable future.
The Patio Theater continues to have their regular programming on hiatus.
The Northwest Chicago Film Society has resumed programming on a limited, monthly basis for the present.