Film: Kanal, Doc Films, Max Palevsky Cinema, Ida Noyes Hall, April 14


When: Thu, April 14, 9:30pm – 11:01pm
Where: Max Palevsky Cinema in Ida Noyes Hall (1212 East 59th Street, Chicago, IL 60637) (map)
Underground Cinema (Andrzej Wajda, 1957) • At the end of the Warsaw Uprising of 1944, a group of Polish resistance fighters retreat into the sewers in a desperate attempt at escape from the Nazis. They become disoriented, unable to return to the light of the surface for fear of being shot, and instead are forced to wade through endless fumes and sewage. The second installment of Wajda’s World War II trilogy, Kanał is a stark and harrowing depiction of hell within the earth. It helped to establish not only Wajda’s career, but also Polish cinema’s reputation on the world stage, winning the Special Jury Prize at Cannes. 16mm



A Film Unfinished

Thursday, April 28–Saturday, April 30

A series of events relating to the award-winning documentary, A Film Unfinished

These programs are dedicated to the memory of Miriam Bratu Hansen.

Yael Hersonski, Director of A Film Unfinished, will be present at all events.

Thursday, April 28: Free Screening of A Film Unfinished

A Film Unfinished

When: Thu, April 28, 7:00pm – 8:28pm
Where: Max Palevsky Cinema in Ida Noyes Hall (1212 East 59th Street, Chicago, IL 60637) (map)
Special Event! Yael Hersonski’s award-winning documentary interrogates a body of archival footage shot in the Warsaw ghetto in May 1942 under the Nazi propaganda machine. The film incorporates interviews with the cinematographer of the original footage, survivors’ responses, and reflections on the Nazi construction of images of Jewish life in the Ghetto. The special screening, in presence of director Yael Hersonski, is dedicated to the memory of Miriam Bratu Hansen. Free and open to the public, co-sponsored by The Chicago Center for Jewish Studies and The Human Rights Program (A roundtable discussion will take place at the Film Studies Center, Sat. April 30, 8:30pm.) 35mm

Friday, April 29: Workshop with Yael Hersonski

Location TBA

12:00 pm


Saturday, April 30: “The Silence of the Archive: Roundtable Discussion on A Film Unfinished

Film Studies Center

Cobb Hall, Rm. 307

5811 S. Ellis

8 pm: reception; 8:30 pm: roundtable

Registration for the roundtable is requested.  Register at:

These events are made possible by the Harriet and Ulrich Meyer Fund of the Chicago Center for Jewish Studies, and are presented in collaboration with the Department of Cinema and Media Studies, doc films, and the Human Rights Program.

Film: The 14th Annual European Union Film Festival, Gene Siskel, Film Center, March 4 – March 31

The 14th Annual European Union Film Festival

From March 4 through 31, the Gene Siskel Film Center welcomes you to the 14th Annual European Union Film Festival, the largest showcase in North America for the cinema of European Union nations. This year’s festival, our largest yet, boasts 64 films representing 24 nations, highlighted by new films from major directors including Michael Winterbottom (THE TRIP), Catherine Breillat (THE SLEEPING BEAUTY), Tony Gatlif (KORKORO), Álex de la Iglesia (THE LAST CIRCUS), Nicholas Philibert (NÉNETTE), Manoel de Oliveira (THE STRANGE CASE OF ANGELICA), Christi Puiu (AURORA), Pedro Costa (CHANGE NOTHING), Pantelis Voulgaris (WITH HEART AND SOUL), and Jan Hrebejk (KAWASAKI’S ROSE).

According to the tradition of our festival, the opening night is presided over by the nation currently holding the presidency of the European Union. On Friday, March 4, our hosts are the Honorable Karoly Dan, Consul General of Hungary in New York, and Kaarina Koskenalusta, Honorary Consul of Hungary, Chicago, who will introduce the opening night film BIBLIOTHÈQUE PASCAL, Hungary’s dark and fanciful designated Academy Award contender. Director Szabolcs Hajdu and star Orsolya Török-Illyés will be present for audience discussion.

Also scheduled to appear are director Cary Fukunaga and star Mia Wasikowska of the United Kingdom’s JANE EYRE (March 6), director Tomas Donela of Lithuania’s FAREWELL (March 12 and 17), and actress/supermodel Liya Kebede of the United Kingdom’s DESERT FLOWER (March 13). Other possible guest appearances were unconfirmed at press time; please check back for updates on guest appearances and added special events in association with screenings.

In all, the festival includes nine films that were selected to represent their nations in this year’s competition for Best Foreign Language Film. In addition to BIBLIOTHÈQUE PASCAL, we screen the official Academy Award contenders from Austria (LA PIVELLINA), Belgium (ILLEGAL), the Czech Republic (KAWASAKI’S ROSE), Estonia (THE TEMPTATION OF ST. TONY), Italy (THE FIRST BEAUTIFUL THING), Portugal (TO DIE LIKE A MAN), Slovakia (THE BORDER), and Slovenia (9:06).

We close the festival on Thursday, March 31, with Michael Winterbottom’s hilarious road comedy THE TRIP, followed by a closing night reception hosted by Whole Foods Market.

The Gene Siskel Film Center thanks the consulates, the consuls general, and the cultural institutes of the European Union in Chicago, and their embassies in Washington, D.C., for their enthusiastic participation. We especially salute the efforts of all those who served on the festival planning committee.

—Barbara Scharres and Martin Rubin

Vote for the Audience Award! Win a Free Membership!

Vote for the European Union Film Festival’s Audience Award, and your ballot may be selected for the grand prize of a year’s membership to the Film Center! Ballots are available in the lobby. Past winners of the award include I’M NOT SCARED (2004), COLOSSAL SENSATION! (2005), CLEAN (2006), AFTER THE WEDDING (2007), THE UNKNOWN WOMAN (2008), THE BEACHES OF AGNES (2009), and THE WORLD IS BIG AND SALVATION LURKS AROUND THE CORNER (2010).

Purchase a European Union festival pass for $50!

6 movies for the price of 5, plus a free small popcorn with each film. Turn your pass in at the end of the festival for a $5 discount on a Gene Siskel Film Center membership. An $83 value for $50!

For their generous assistance in obtaining films for the European Union Film Festival, the Gene Siskel Film Center thanks:

Austria: Dr. Thomas Schnoell, Joanne McAllister, Consulate General of Austria

Belgium: Martine Leclerq, Wallonia (Belgium) Trade & Investment, Chicago; Claude Stomp, Flanders Investment and Trade, Chicago; Frank Verpoorten, Flanders House, New York; Madeline Shapiro, Caviar Films

Bulgaria: Valentin Donchev, Lila Georgieva, Bulgarian Consulate General, Chicago; Mila Petkova, Bulgarian National Film Center; Christian Nochev, Andy Film; Anri Koulev, Svetlana Ganeva, Koulev Film Production

Czech Republic: Dana Hunatova, Consulate General of the Czech Republic, Chicago; Denmark: Lizette Gram Mygind, The Danish Film Institute

Estonia: Tristan Priimagi, Estonian Film Foundation

Finland: Jenni Domingo, The Finnish Film Foundation

France: Institut Français; Laurence Geannopulos, Jean-François Rochard, Cultural Services at the Consulate General of France in Chicago

Germany: Werner Ott, Eugene Sampson, Goethe-Institut, Chicago

Greece: Liza Linardou, Greek Film Center

Hungary: Bela Bunyik, Bunyik Entertainment; Katalin Vajda, Magyar Filmunio; Karoly Dan, Consulate General of Hungary, NY; Kaarina Koskenalusta, Honorary Consulate of Hungary, Chicago; Miklos Martin Kovacs, Hungarian Investment & Trade Commission; Bonnie Miller

Ireland: Tim Reilly, Consulate General of Ireland, Chicago; Claire McCaughley, Treasure, Entertainment, Ltd.

Italy: Silvio Marchetti, Mary Anne Melchior, Istituto Italiano di Cultura, Chicago; Barbara Klein, Italian Film Festival of St. Louis; Catia Rossi, RAI Trade S.p.A.

Lithuania: Skaiste Aniuliene, Agnė Vertelkaitė, Consulate General of the Republic of Lithuania, Chicago; Tomas Donela

Luxembourg: Joy Hoffmann, Centre National de l’Audiovisuel; Valeska Neu, Films Boutique

Netherlands: Carla Bourgonje, Consulate General of the Netherlands, Chicago; Madeline Shapiro, Caviar Films

Portugal: Anne-Mathilde Roudaut, Insomnia World Sales

Romania: Oana Radu, Romanian Cultural Institute; Anne Wiedlack, M-appeal

Slovakia: Alexandra Strelková, Slovak Film Institute; David Corba, Leon Productions; Silvia Pinterova, Film Europe

Slovenia: Estelle Gadaud, Insomnia World Sales

Spain: Javier Ruperez, Consulate General of Spain; Ignacio Olmos, Teresa Hernando, Instituto Cervantes de Chicago

Sweden: Gunnar Almér, Swedish Film Institute; Kerstin Lane, Consulate of Sweden

and also: Jed Rapfogel, Anthology Film Archives; Ryan Krivoshey, The Cinema Guild; John Poole, Jr., Corinth Films; Rebeca Conget, Film Movement; Paul Marchant, First Run Features; Sonia Pachmayer, Focus Features; Livia Bloom, Icarus Films; Ryan Werner, Jonathan Hertzberg, Elizabeth Brambilla, Cary Jones, Kim Kalyka, IFC Films; Gary Palmucci, Jason Leaf, Kino International; Neal Block, Magnolia Pictures; Neil Friedman, Menemsha Films, Inc.; Ed Arentz, Brian Andreotti, Suzanne Fedak, Music Box Films; Laura Kim, James Lewis, National Geographic Entertainment; Adam Sekuler, Northwest Film Forum; John Tilley, Olive Films; Debbi Berlin, Palisades Tartan; Brandon Peters, Strand Releasing; Lara Bogenrief, Terry Hines & Associates; Kelli Larson, Lindsay Wiser, World Wide Motion Picture Corporation; Carl Youngdahl; Clemence Taillandier, Zeitgeist Films.

Film: “36 Immortals,” Armenian Circle, March 1

Armenian Circle will feature

“36 Immortals”

A short documentary on the History of the Armenian alphabet by Hrachya Vardanyan (in English and Armenian)

All are welcome. We will also have some refreshments!


Dr. Hripsime Haroutunian
Lecturer in Armenian Studies
Dept of Near Eastern Lang. & Civilizations
University of Chicago

Film: “Čovek nije tica (Man Is Not a Bird),” Slavic Film Series, Northwestern University, February 24

Screening this Thursday (24 February):

“Čovek nije tica (Man Is Not a Bird)”

With an introduction by Dr. Petkovic
Refreshments provided by the Slavic Department.

Film screenings every other Thursday @7pm in Kresge 4365. Pizza and soda to be provided and discussion afterward is encouraged.

Romania at the Festival de la Francophonie, Alliance Francaise – Chicago, March 4

Romania at the Festival de la Francophonie

Friday, March 4, 2011 @ 6:30 – 9:00 pm
Alliance Francaise – Chicago
54 W. Chicago Ave entrance
Children $5, Adults $15

Djembé, raclette, grio, gauffre, tourtière, poutine, thiou… Don’t know what these words mean… or taste like? Come and find out!

ROCX is proud to have Romania represented on the kick-off evening of a month-long festival organized by Alliance Fracaise, celebrating French-speaking people from over 50 different countries. Come to sample delicacies from Romania, Belgium, Canada, France, Morocco, Québec and Switzerland, meet people from all over the world on the dance floor with DJ Lady D spinning La Francofonie, a mix of classics, hits and techno-ethnic. And… pourquoi pas? Belt out your own version of La Vie en Rose and let your inner Céline Dion loose during the Karaoke de la Francophonie. Prizes for the braves! The Romanian pavillion will be sponsored by generous local Romanian businesses.

Pre-register early with Alliance Francaise! Places are limited and this program sells out every year.

Romanian Film Festival at Chicago – Third Edition, Skokie Theatre, May 27-29

Romanian Film Festival of Chicago – 3rd Edition

Romanian Cultural Exchange (ROCX) is hosting the 3rd Romanian Film Festival in Chicago, scheduled for May 27-29, 2011 at the Skokie Theatre. This event draws the highest population of people with Romanian heritage in the Mid-West, and hundreds of film lovers. The Romanian Community in Chicago alone accounts for over 100,000 people. The event will include an opening cocktail party to honor lead Romanian film industry players and our elite sponsors.

As the L.A. Times quotes, “Romanians can’t make a bad film. It’s like, illegal in their country.” We invite you to join the Romanian community, and foreign film enthusiasts alike in discovering the cinematic phenomenon that left a fierce impression on film festivals all over the world. Help ROCX make that impact in Chicago.

Highlights include:

– Chicago Premiere of Silent Wedding (“Nunta Muta”) directed by Horatiu Malaele, Winner of the Grand Prix at Umbria International Film Festival, Italy 2009

– Chicago Premiere of Megatron directed by Marian Crisan winner of the Palme d’Or for a Short Film at the Cannes International Film Festival 2008

– US Premiere of The Red Gloves (“Manusi Rosii”) directed by Radu Gabrea, Official Selection of the Cannes International Film Festival 2010

– Romanian Film Festival of Chicago Short Film Awards Ceremony

ESA screens Ostře sledované vlaky (Closely watched trains) ( Czechoslovakia, 1966), February 17

This Thursday, February 17, at 7pm, in Harper 135, we offer you an opportunity to watch an Oscar-awarded movie Closely watched trains (Ostře sledované vlaky, 1966). Although this movie is a bit older, it is still quite popular in former Czechoslovakia. If you’re wondering why, come and see it!

In order to make your movie experience even more enjoyable, we’ll be also serving snacks and drinks. We hope to see you there!

On behalf of ESA board,


Film: Central Asian Studies Society trip to see The Bodyguard (Telokhranitel’), Gene Siskel Film Center, February 19

Salomlar O’rtoqlar!

You are Cordially Invited to Dinner and a Movie with the Central Asian Studies Society (CASS)

“The Bodyguard” (Telokhranitel)

February 19th at 3PM

at the Gene Siskel Film Center

Discounted Student Ticket Price is $7, and after the film students are invited to Jibek Jolu to sample traditional Kyrgyz dishes.

Please RSVP to Perry Wong ( by February 14 if you plan to participate in both the screening and dinner so travel arrangements can be made.

Film Synopsis:

1979, Ali Khamraev, USSR/Tadzhikistan, 91 min.
With Aleksandr Kaidanovsky, Gulya Tashbayeva

Like THE SEVENTH BULLET (playing Feb. 26 & 28), THE BODYGUARD is an example of the “Red Western,” set again during the Basmachi Revolt of the 1920s. This time, however, the primary reference point is not Sergio Leone, but the classic Hollywood westerns of Budd Boetticher and Anthony Mann. When a Basmachi leader is captured, the Red Army enlists a veteran local hunter to escort the prisoner, accompanied by his servant and daughter, across difficult terrain, pursued every step of the way by I a relentless Basmachi usurper and his soothsayer wife. The morally ambiguous power struggles among the beleaguered group recall Mann’s great THE NAKED SPUR, as do the spectacular landscapes of snowy mountain and vast desert. In Russian with English subtitles. 35mm. (MR)

Film: The Mysteries of the Organism, Dusan Makavejev, 1971, Doc Films, February 14

Monday, February 14, 2011 7:00 pm

Ida Noyes Hall, Max Palevsky Cinema
1212 East 59th Street, Chicago, IL

Dusan Makavejev, 1971 • “Cancer and fascism are closely related. Fascism is the frenzy of sexual cripples,” a narrator intones over kaleidoscopic images of an outdoor couple making love in WR: MYSTERIES OF THE ORGANISM. So goes a frenzied investigation of sex, medical science and fascism. Makavejev makes films of a genre hard to describe or imagine without direct experience: deeply pleasurable collaged critiques of political systems. Banned in the former Yugoslavia immediately upon release, WR is deliriously overflowing with information about the life and career of Wilhelm Reich, unsimulated sex, advertising jingles, and Balkan melodrama. 35mm
Introduced by Josephine Ferorelli