Ida Lupino's THE HITCH-HIKER (American Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) – Monday, 7pm
"This is the true story of a man and a gun and a car. The gun belonged to the man." The film belongs to Ida Lupino, gravel-voiced actress and one of the rare female directors in classic Hollywood. Produced under her short-lived The Filmakers banner, THE HITCH-HIKER alternates between sensory deprivation and overload. After a dazzling credits sequence awash in disembodied limbs and darkness punctuated by gun blasts, Lupino toys with the viewer like her psycho protagonist (William Talman) toys with the hapless fishermen (Edmond O'Brien and Frank Lovejoy) who make the mistake of offering him a ride. Noir-veteran cinematographer Nicholas Musuraca (OUT OF THE PAST) spends much of the brief running time right up in the three men's pores. Meanwhile, Lupino's script almost daringly switches allegiance from psycho to victim to viewer, featuring extended scenes in unsubtitled Spanish and a hilarious meta moment when it acknowledges its debt to previous insane-hitchhiker movies. In an era when "noir" gets stamped on any black-and-white film that takes place outside of the drawing room, this is a wallow in real darkness. The prologue warns that, "What you will see in the next seventy minutes could have happened to you"; by the fadeout, it felt like it had happened to me. (1953, 71 min, 35mm Archival Print) MP
Lina Wertmüller's SEVEN BEAUTIES (Italian Revival)
Gene Siskel Film Center - Friday, 6pm and Saturday, 3pm
"Oh, yeah." A pitch-black sex tragicomedy, writer/director Lina Wertmüller's outrageous SEVEN BEAUTIES is one of the key films of the '70s. It first found me in the mid-'90s, screened for me by an art lover from the '60s generation who was scandalized I'd never seen it. I vividly recall him intoning "oh, yeah" with gusto along with that audacious opening: a rocking, spoken litany of societal types who dampen down the day (Enzo Jannacci's "Quelli che..."), playing over a montage of Hitler, Mussolini, and WWII footage. A perverse, cynical picaresque, incoherent in its politics, SEVEN BEAUTIES features Giancarlo Giannini in a great comic (and dramatic) performance as the craven, vain Pasqualino, who finds his skill at saving his own skin put to the ultimate test when he winds up in a Nazi concentration camp. The key set piece has him hilariously attempting to woo the sadistic, impassive, massive commandant (Shirley Stoller, as unforgettable here as she was in Leonard Kastle's THE HONEYMOON KILLERS). In delightful flashbacks, Pasqualino, who fancies himself a gangster and a ladies' man, struts around pre-war Naples like a cross between Marcello Mastroianni and John Cleese. He has seven sisters, shot by Wertmüller as Felliniesque grotesques. (She began her film career as an assistant director on the towering 8½.) He stumbles into murdering his sister's pimp, then incompetently dismembers the flatulent body. Back in the hell of the concentration camp, Fernando Rey plays the anarchist prisoner who mounts an unforgettable last stand for "man in disorder." Wertmüller was all the rage internationally in the mid-'70s, and SEVEN BEAUTIES even racked up multiple Academy Award nominations, including best director (the first ever such nod for a woman). Her critical stock, down for years, may be going back up. Look at her vivid colors and camera angles, her thrilling deployment of closeups and music, her rhythmic cutting and the way she moves the camera. SEVEN BEAUTIES still has great brio and power. Drenched in pessimism and irony even as it strikes a blow for the life force and against authority, it's a true emblem of the '70s. (1975, 116 min, DCP Digital) SP
Catherine Breillat’s FAT GIRL (French Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) – Sunday, 7pm
Catherine Breillat’s FAT GIRL is a meticulous work of genre subversion. Her career-long fixation on themes like “desire, guilt, romance and anti-romance (which are the same thing)” impress the conviction of her ongoing affront against both the pestiferous clichés and contrived iconoclasm often present in representations of female sexuality under the male gaze. Along with FAT GIRL, A REAL YOUNG GIRL (1976) and 36 FILLETTE (1988) challenge the coming-of-age à la Lolita genre; ROMANCE (1999) eschews that very genre’s covenants; and three of her most recent films—THE LAST MISTRESS (2007), BLUEBEARD (2009) and SLEEPING BEAUTY (2010)—imbue literary or fantasy costume dramas with incendiary resolve. Her 2013 film ABUSE OF WEAKNESS, based on her real-life relationship with a con man following a stroke in 2004, is an apparent outlier, though it has in common with FAT GIRL a personal connection that’s not so obvious in her other, more conceptual work. FAT GIRL follows sisters Anaïs and Elena on their summer holiday at the French seaside; fifteen-year-old Elena (Roxane Mesquida) is conventionally attractive and sexually precocious, while her little sister, twelve-year-old Anaïs (the astonishing Anaïs Reboux, whom Breillat discovered in a McDonald’s), is the titled fat girl, whose own sexual inclinations are just as mature as her sister’s, but also more pragmatic. Elena meets a college-aged Italian boy at the cafe, and Anaïs observes their awkward courtship, visualized by signature long-take sex scenes that befit the so-called “Auteur of Porn,” from her position as Elena’s hanger-on. Breillat herself is the younger sister to model-actress Marie-Hélène Breillat, both of whom appeared in Bernardo Bertolucci’s LAST TANGO IN PARIS; she claims that her sister didn’t speak to her for several years following FAT GIRL, though they reconciled after BLUEBEARD, which features a similar, albeit more stylized, depiction of the quintessential familial dynamic. Sibling rivalry, however, is subservient to other themes Breillat is razing with her frank depiction of adolescent sexuality and startling violence. She’s said that FAT GIRL is “like a sitcom” in reference to Elena’s relationship with the older boy, who spouts cloying prosaism about the meaningfulness of vaginal intercourse. “It’s completely ridiculous that we live for lies,” Breillat said in an interview. “Actually, it’s not ridiculous, it’s not funny. It’s terrible. I say it’s like a sitcom, but since I go into the truth of sentimental emotion, in that way it isn’t really like one. It is more tragic and more comic. You have to think about it." Ambiguity is a hallmark of Breillat’s work, and the film’s violent ending is the perfect encapsulation of this narrative tendency. She combines youthful romance with polysemous violence to vitiate suggestions of terror as a punishment for sexual indiscretion. And despite its seemingly feminist slant, the film doesn’t pass the Bechdel test—but perhaps that’s the point? From another interview: “There is no masculine psychology in my cinema. There is only the resentments and desires of women. A man should not attempt to recognize himself in my male characters. On the other hand, he can find a better understanding of women. And knowledge of the other is the highest goal.” Indeed, the problematic elements of Breillat’s films—from bromidic implications of sexual obsession to quease-inducing posturing towards rape—are redeemed, or at least justified, by that very lack of restraint, the willingness to push boundaries, be it sexually or politically, that epitomizes her output. (2001, 86 min, 35mm) KS
Norman Z. McLeod's ALICE IN WONDERLAND (American Revival)
Music Box Theatre – Saturday and Sunday, 11:30am
What the ever-loving fuck? There have been many film and television adaptations of Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-glass, many misguided and others simply uninteresting. But the 1933 edition—Paramount Pictures' Christmas gift to America's latchkey children at the nadir of the Depression—is almost certainly the creepiest ... and yes, I have seen the Jan Švankmajer adaptation, which at least has a very good idea of what it's doing and why. The Paramount version, not so much. Originally promoted as "The World's Greatest Story with the World's Greatest Cast," ALICE '33 gathered almost every Paramount contract actor and buried them under unbecoming prosthetic noses, oversized animal masks, and other costumes seemingly thrown together from yesterday's garbage. (Just about the only prominent Paramount players left out of the fun are Marlene Dietrich and Mae West, which is fortunate for them and a pity for us; either one would've made a sultrier Cheshire Cat than Richard Arlen. Instead we get Edward Everett Horton, Cary Grant, Ned Parks, Gary Cooper, and a couple of washed-up Keystone kut-ups also featured in MILLION DOLLAR LEGS.) Although the film was heavily promoted and merchandized like a yuletide perennial, the character designs are hardly toyetic. Paramount touted the fact that its artisans had studied John Tenniel's Alice illustrations in first editions housed at the Henry E. Huntington Library, but the costumes are almost uniformly dead-eyed, inexpressive grotesques. Even potentially cute creatures like the Dormouse and the March Hare are rendered as flocked vermin who would be more at home in INLAND EMPIRE. The Red Queen and the White Queen sport dresses that resemble cascades of condoms. Film historian William K. Everson got this one right back in his program notes from 1963: "Basically this is a rather harsh and ugly Alice, sometimes appropriately so, but more often unintentionally so. It hints at the kind of an Alice we might get if Buñuel or Clouzot were to tackle the subject, and thus with its overall ugliness it is not an unappropriate companion feature to LE CORBEAU." Other highlights include W.C. Fields as an inebriated Humpty Dumpty, genuinely accomplished photographic effects (credited to Gordon Jennings and Farciot Edouart, but generally attributed to William Cameron Menzies, also assumed to be the production designer), and a climactic montage more violent than anything in the annals of Peckinpah. WATCH THIS (not poison). (1933, 76 min, 35mm) KAW
Laura Poitras’ RISK (New Documentary)
Gene Siskel Film Center - Check Venue website for schedule and showtimes
Laura Poitras’ RISK might not be the CITIZENFOUR follow-up we wanted, but it’s certainly the one we deserve. It might even be the one we need—according to various sources, the original cut, which premiered at Cannes last year, was either just generally well received or taken as a “glorified fan film.” By all accounts, the version now showing at the Siskel Film Center and slated for a summer release on Showtime is not only different, but markedly apropos; as late as the end of April, Poitras was canceling screenings to re-edit the film to include recent statements made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions declaring that WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s arrest is a top priority. Where CITIZENFOUR had the distinction of being both contained and idealistic, portraying Edward Snowden as something of a Robin Hood figure who takes knowledge from the elite and gives it to us poor, surveilled schmucks, RISK is broader and thus more complicated, the result of which is extra-unnerving but ultimately less satisfying than her previous film. It’s that very lack of satisfaction, hitherto afforded to us by a sense of intimate revelation that can’t be recaptured even through Poitras’ signature, deadpan narration, which makes RISK maybe more important than its predecessor. Poitras was working on the film before she started CITIZENFOUR, documenting Assange and his cohorts, including WikiLeaks editor Sarah Harrison and controversial hacker Jacob Appelbaum, for over six years, relationships revealed to be steadily in decline over that duration. That decline, however, doesn’t seem to exist in a vacuum, but rather in direct correlation to Assange’s volatile public image. Poitras doesn’t shy away from controversy, be it the sexual assault allegations or his involvement with the 2016 presidential election. And just as Poitras examines Assange’s contradictions, she addresses her own muddied ethics, at one point revealing that she had a relationship with Appelbaum in 2013 and that he’d abused one her friends soon thereafter. Perhaps unintentionally, it’s an appurtenant indictment of an all-too pervasive tendency to too quickly idolize those who’ve aligned themselves with the right cause in spite of wrong actions. Poitras doesn’t exempt herself from criticism, even if she does sometimes stoop to the very level she’s critiquing. (Assange’s girlfriend, activist Pamela Anderson, would agree with the latter point, as is evident in a poem she recently wrote about the film. It begins: “Let's examine Laura's relative role to the organisations and her subjects. Her wealth./Her oscar./Julian's role relative to others in the organisation in terms of freedom and exposure to political persecution./The narrow lens Laura has picked has been to please a narrow constituency. …” Yikes.) In one scene, Lady Gaga haphazardly interviews Assange after requesting he changes his shirt to look more like a rebel. It’s both absurd and embarrassing, for us as well as them. Is our idolization of Assange or Snowden, or even Poitras, distracting us from the substance of their discoveries? RISK presents many an ethical dilemma, from Assange’s questionable ideology to Poitras’ own indiscretions, but again in such a way that confronts the status quo. CITIZENFOUR was exciting because it was in the moment to an almost unparalelled degree, but what happens when the viewer—or the filmmaker, or the journalist—takes a step back to more thoroughly examine the narrative, be it breaking news or an exhaustive probe? In spite of Assange’s egregious shortcomings, there is a larger takeaway from the confusing amalgam of personal and political chaos. As Poitras told Indiewire in a recent interview, “The threat targeting WikiLeaks and their staff is also aimed at journalism more broadly. The Attorney General’s words are not directed just at WikiLeaks but at the first amendment, and President Trump’s comments have been horrifying. They’re an all-out threat against the press.” We don’t want to hear that, but we definitely need to. (2016, 87 min, DCP Digital) KS
Robert Bresson's LES ANGES DU PÉCHÉ (French Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) – Wednesday, 7 and 9pm
Despite—or because of—its overtly religious subject matter, Robert Bresson's "conventional" first feature LES ANGES DU PÉCHÉ—about an order of nuns who specialize in looking after female ex-cons—is the one (aside from, of course, his debut short, PUBLIC AFFAIRS) that most thoroughly hints at his Surrealist roots. Made before Bresson started putting his theories about editing, framing and acting into practice, the film has a style that's essentially syncretic, repurposing "mainstream" (or "mainstream at the time") ideas about how a camera should move, how a film should be edited, how actors should perform, and how a story should be told toward its own ends; it teeters somewhere between reverence and absurdism, with Bresson interjecting the melodramatic plot with scenes of nuns scurrying around at night, nuns hiding in shadows, nuns arguing—their hoods always comically flapping in the wind. From PUBLIC AFFAIRS through L'ARGENT, Bresson displayed a generally ironic stance toward human behavior and socially hierarchies—regardless of what you've heard, this is no different. (1943, 96 min, 35mm) IV
John Carpenter's ASSAULT ON PRECINCT 13 (American Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) – Thursday, 7pm
John Carpenter's second feature is often cited as an object lesson in tight, tense low-budget action filmmaking, but Carpenter admitted to extending shots and scenes in order to fill a bare-bones scenario to feature length. Whether by design or necessity, the laid-back exposition generates a seductive air of fateful, impending doom. Viewers may not even notice the deliberate pace due to Carpenter's irresistibly cheesy and astoundingly effective synth score that pumps tension through a simple five note melody or a haunting hanging chord. Carpenter's use of expansive 'Scope frames would seem antithetical to shoestring filming, but it suits the horizontal Southern California expanse: a wild frontier of suburban decay where an ice cream truck in broad daylight can be the site of horrific violence, igniting the film with dread over unlimited possibilities of mayhem. The ensuing climactic shootout of marauding villains fulfills that promise, less in its own right than in the decades of action movie climaxes and video games that followed its explosive precedent. (1976, 91 min, 35mm) KBL
Eric Radomski and Bruce Timm’s BATMAN: MASK OF THE PHANTASM (American Animated Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) - Friday, 7pm and 9pm and Sunday, 1:30pm
Over the many years of Batman’s existence, the Caped Crusader has been portrayed in a variety of ways. From the campiness of the Adam West version to the gritty, humane rendition of Christian Bale in the Christopher Nolan trilogy, there’s been no shortage in the versatility of representation that the character offers. Perhaps one of the most fondly remembered variants is Eric Radomski and Bruce Timm’s 1950’s noir and gothic architecture-inspired television show Batman: The Animated Series from the 1990s. In the 1993 feature film spin-off BATMAN: MASK OF THE PHANTASM, the mysterious and spectral Phantasm is hunting down and killing mob bosses that are all associated through their nefarious business dealings; meanwhile, Bruce Wayne (Kevin Conroy) is both surprised and happy to find that his former fiancée, Andrea, has returned to Gotham City. The film intercuts flashback sequences that both show the origins of Batman from his humble ski-masked vigilante beginnings and the beginning/end of his relationship with Andrea. This pacing helps the film flow freely from exposition to action in a delightful manner. One of PHANTASM’s strongest features is its rich character development and its satisfying tying up of loose ends. The film also maintains the same creative team that the animated series utilized and the craftsmanship translates well to the longer than usual narrative typically found on the show. Shirley Walker’s score punctuates the action with sweeping vibrato and functions much in the way the ‘Wham’, ‘Pow’, and ‘Bang’ sound bubbles do in the comics. BATMAN: MASK OF THE PHANTASM stands among the pinnacle of all versions of Bob Kane’s beloved crime fighter, not because of its influences on future Batman works but also because of its own development and depiction of canon. (1993, 76 min, 35mm) KC
Kristen Johnson’s CAMERAPERSON (New Documentary)
Block Cinema (Northwestern University) – Friday, 6:30pm (Free Admission)
Over the past twenty-five years, Kristen Johnson has plied her trade as a documentary cinematographer working on such films as FAHRENHEIT 9/11 and CITIZENFOUR. In CAMERAPERSON, Johnson utilizes her past experiences on these documentaries as well as some of their unused footage to create a visual memoir of her career. At the film’s onset, Johnson makes an imploration, asking the audience to ruminate on these images that “have marked me and leave me wondering still.” What follows is a series of candid moments, such as time spent with her mother who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, testimony by survivors of Bosnia genocide, and many others. CAMERAPERSON leans more abstract and does not particularly have a definitive narrative quality to it. Instead, Johnson seeks to show the power of the camera and the moving images it’s able to capture. There is sadness, beauty, and triumph in these sequences. Like an abstract personal diary, the film leaves the juxtaposition of its arrangements up to the viewer’s own interpretation. These moments build upon each other and the emotional resonance they leave behind echoes in a powerful way. There is an urge to designate this as autobiographical due to the inclusion of some of Johnson’s personal life but this would be a disservice as the running theme overall is about the triumph of the human spirit and the impressions left from recording these bits. Johnson touches on people of all genders, religions, social classes, and ethnicities. Her cross-section of humanity explored creates a sense of unity with all walks of life. CAMERAPERSON is a visual collage, experimental in nature, and one that touches on all the varied moments that make us human. With Johnson in person for a post-screening discussion with NU professor Debra Tolchinsky. (2016, 102 min, DCP Digital) KC
Nicholas Ray's IN A LONELY PLACE (American Revival)
Park Ridge Classic Film Series at the Park Ridge Public Library (20 S. Prospect Ave., Park Ridge) – Thursday, 7pm (Free Admission)
"I was born when she kissed me. I died when she left me. I lived a few weeks while she loved me." Harried screenwriter Dixon Steele pens his own epitaph at the height of his ongoing part in the murder investigation of a hatcheck girl, but it's his impressionable girlfriend Laurel Gray who appropriates it to devastating effect at the culmination of Nicholas Ray's noir masterpiece. All Dix wants is a lucky break on a screenplay, but when an innocent evening with attendant Mildred ends with her as a corpse, suspicion follows him around, a burden he can't seem to shake even as he enters a whirlwind relationship with aspiring actress Laurel. IN A LONELY PLACE earns its exalted roost in the annals of classic Hollywood thanks to two towering performances, one from the inimitable Humphrey Bogart, and the other from the Grand Dame of film noir herself, Gloria Grahame. Of course, there's the Ray factor as well (who, at the time, was enjoying his short-lived marriage to Grahame, which would go very sour, far too soon), and his reckless determination to turn typical narratives on their head is in full bloom here. In sowing the seeds of suspicion against Dix, we careen after an ill-fated night drive into Laurel's perspective, with even a gruff "You drive!" and a passing of the wheel to mark the occasion. Bogie's greatest performance betrays no clear indication of innocence or guilt, and as Grahame ascends to the role of audience surrogate, her dilemma is all to palpable. By the end, it hardly feels hard-boiled, but it sure packs a mean punch. (1950, 94 min, Video Projection – Unconfirmed Format) TJ
Walter Hill's THE DRIVER (American Revival)
Doc Films (University of Chicago) – Thursday, 9:15pm
The plot of Walter Hill's THE DRIVER is as simple as the car chases are complex: after narrowly escaping arrest, a lone getaway driver (known only as such and played by Ryan O'Neal) is relentlessly pursued by a crooked detective (Bruce Dern) who sets up another crime in order to entrap the enigmatic accessory-before-the-fact. Considered an early example of neo-noir, the minimalist film not only acknowledges its genre's early conventions but utilizes them to a heightened degree—like the eponymous protagonist, every character lacks a proper name, known either by their profession (The Driver, The Detective, The Connection) or a physical characteristic (Glasses, Teeth). In films such as F.W. Murnau's SUNRISE and John Carney's ONCE, the use of archetypal labeling is meant to emphasize the universality of the characters' experiences. In THE DRIVER, Hill's use of archetypal anonymity serves to alienate the viewer from sentimentality whilst reminding them of the film's utmost purpose. Even the beautiful female lead is coyly referred to as The Player, a description that emphasizes both her penchant and her purpose. Often compared to Jean-Pierre Melville's LE SAMOURAI, the film was an obvious influence on Nicolas Winding Refn's 2011 film DRIVE. (1978, 91 min, Blu-Ray Projection) KS
MORE OPPOSITIONAL VIEWING
The First Nations Film and Video Festival continues through May 10 at several Chicago locations, as well as additional screenings in Evanston and Kenosha, Wisconsin. Complete schedule at http://www.fnfvf.org.
Also at Block Cinema (Northwestern University) this week: Nancy Buirski’s2011 documentary THE LOVING STORY (77 min, Digital Projection), about the couple at the center of the landmark Loving miscegenation case, screens on Thursday at 7pm. Free admission.
Doc Films (University of Chicago) screens Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud’s 2007 French/Iranaian animated film PERSEPOLIS (96 min, 35mm), based on Satrapi’s autobiographical graphic novel about her growing up during the Iranian Revolution, on Tuesday at 7pm.
MORE SCREENINGS AND EVENTS
The Film Studies Center (at the Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St., University of Chicago) hosts a Fluxus | Film Symposium on Friday and Saturday. On Friday, there is a 4pm panel, a 6pm reception, and a 7pm screening. On Saturday, there are panels and a keynote talk from 9am-6pm. The Friday screening includes Fluxus films and videos by Wolf Vostell, Carolee Schneemann, Eric Andersen, David Katzive, George Brecht, George Maciunas, and Yoko Ono, among others. Free admission. Details and requested (but not required) registration at https://fluxusandfilm.wordpress.com/schedule.
Comfort Film at Comfort Station Logan Square (2579 N. Milwaukee Ave.) presents Werewolves, Clowns, Perverts, and Cops: Short Films from the Chicago Underground on Wednesday at 8pm. Included are works by Derek Braasch, Anthony Cooney, Cleveland Moore, Mike Vanderbilt, Pat O'Sullivan, Henry Frias Leon, and Anthony Desmond. Free admission.
Black World Cinema (at the Studio Movie Grill Chatham 14, 210 87th St.) screens Corey Grant’s 2017 film ILLICIT (Unconfirmed Running Time, Digital Projection) for a week-long run.
Black Cinema House (at the Stony Island Arts Bank, 6760 S. Stony Island) screens Melvin Van Peebles’ 1970 film WATERMELON MAN (100 min, Video Projection – Unconfirmed Format) on Friday at 7pm. Followed by a discussion with Chicago filmmaker and artist Cam Be and local designer Drew of Enstrumental. Free admission.
Sinema Obscura at Township (2200 N. California Ave.) presents TV Party of 5 on Monday at 7pm. The program promises “3 hours of animated and live action shorts, TV pilots, movie trailers, etc.” by Chicago-based makers.
Juho Kuosmanen’s 2016 Finnish/German/Swedish film THE HAPPIEST DAY IN THE LIFE OF OLLI MÄKI (92 min, Digital Projection) opens at the Renaissance Highland Park in Highland Park.
Also at the Gene Siskel Film Center this week: Laura Poitras’ 2016 documentary RISK (87 min, DCP Digital) plays for a week (keep an eye on our website for a review to be posted over the weekend); Ryan Suffern’s 2016 documentary FINDING OSCAR (100 min, DCP Digital) begins a two-week run; Valerio Ruiz’s 2015 Italian documentary about Lina Wertmüller, BEHIND THE WHITE GLASSES (112 min, DCP Digital), is on Saturday at 5:15pm; Lucile Hadžihalilović’s 2004 French film INNOCENCE (122 min, 35mm) is on Sunday at 5pm and Tuesday at 6pm, with a lecture by filmmaker and SAIC instructor Melika Bass at the Tuesday show; and the SAIC Film, Video, New Media, Animation, and Sound Festival takes place on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday (May 12) from 4-10pm each day. These programs of SAIC student work are free admission.
Also at Doc Films (University of Chicago) this week: Chris McKay’s 2016 animated film THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE (104 min, DCP Digital) is on Saturday at 7 and 9:15pm and Sunday at 3:30pm.
At the Music Box Theatre this week: Jon Nguyen and Rick Barnes’ 2016 documentary DAVID LYNCH: THE ART OF LIFE (93 min, DCP Digital) and Dash Shaw’s 2016 animated film MY ENTIRE HIGH SCHOOL IS SINGING INTO THE SEA (75 min, DCP Digital) both open; Penelope Spheeris’ 1992 film WAYNE’S WORLD (94 min, DCP Digital) screens on Wednesday at 7pm as part of the “Sound Opinions” series; Hal Ashby’s 1979 film BEING THERE (130 min, 35mm) is on Monday at 7pm, as part of critic Mark Caro’s “Is It Still Funny?” series; Ridley Scott’s 2015 film THE MARTIAN (144 min, DCP Digital) is on Tuesday at 7pm, with an introduction by the Field Museum’s Philipp R. Heck; Makoto Shinkai’s 2016 Japanese animated film YOUR NAME. (107 min, Digital Projection; check website for subtitled vs. English-dubbed showtimes) is on Friday and Saturday at 11:45pm; Tommy Wiseau’s 2003 film THE ROOM (99 min, 35mm) is on Friday at Midnight; AND Jim Sharman’s 1975 film THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW (100 min, 35mm) is on Saturday at Midnight.
Facets Cinémathèque screens Jedd Wider and Todd Wider’s 2016 documentary GOD KNOWS WHERE I AM (102 min, Video Projection – Unconfirmed Format) for a week-long run.
The Goethe-Institut Chicago (150 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 200) screens Percy Adlon’s 1982 German film THE FIVE LAST DAYS (112 min, Video Projection – Unconfirmed Format) on Thursday at 6pm. Free admission.
Instituto Cervantes (31 W. Ohio St.) screens German Kral’s 2008 German/Argentinean documentary THE LAST APPLAUSE [EL ÚLTIMO APLAUSO] (88 min, DVD Projection) on Wednesday at 6pm. Free admission.
The Chicago Cultural Center hosts the Queer Film Society’s Cinema Q series screening of James McTeigue’s 2005 film V FOR VENDETTA (132 min, Video Projection – Unconfirmed Format) on Friday at 6:30pm. Free admission.
ONGOING FILM/VIDEO INSTALLATIONS
The Art Institute of Chicago exhibition Zhang Peili: Record. Repeat is on view through July 9. The artist’s first US exhibition features over 50 channels of video from 1989-2007. It is on view in Modern Wing galleries 186 and 289.
The Art Institute of Chicago exhibition Hélio Oiticica: To Organize Delirium is on view through May 7. The large exhibition of work by the acclaimed Brazilian artist includes several films by him, and some related films. Included are Oiticica’s films BRASIL JORGE (1971), FILMORE EAST (1971), and AGRIPPINA IS ROME-MANHATTAN (1972); two slide-show works: NEYRÓTIKA (1973) and CC6 COKE HEAD’S SOUP (1973, made with Thomas Valentin); and Raimundo Amado’s APOCALIPOPÓTESE (1968) and Andreas Valentin’s ONE NIGHT ON GAY STREET (1975, 16mm).
The Art Institute of Chicago (Modern Wing Galleries) has Dara Birnbaum’s 1979 two-channel video KISS THE GIRLS: MAKE THEM CRY (6 min) currently on view.
CINE-LIST: May 5 - May 11, 2017
MANAGING EDITOR // Patrick Friel
ASSOCIATE EDITORS // Ben Sachs, Kathleen Sachs, Kyle A. Westphal
CONTRIBUTORS // Kyle Cubr, Tristan Johnson, Kevin B. Lee, Scott Pfeiffer, Michael W. Phillips Jr., Ignatiy Vishnevetsky