Chicago, IL — Latest location news from the Northwest Chicago Film Society

nrthwestLatest location news from the Northwest Chicago Film Society:

After tomorrow’s (7/3/2013) screening at the Music Box Theatre, the Northwest Chicago Film Society has decided to continue our current season at the Patio Theater (6008 W Irving Park Road).

Yes, even though the air conditioning there is still broken. We figure the possibility of sweating a little beats the possibility of not getting to show these films. We hope our audience will stick with us, both this summer and when we return to the Patio with our next season in the autumn. (Can sitting in an especially beautiful theater keep you cool? I guess we’ll find out!)

Cold, hard details below the Q & A.

-Becca + the rest of the gang at the Northwest Chicago Film Society.

Hey, what’s going on with the Northwest Chicago Film Society? Are those poor kids still cinema vagabonds?
The Northwest Chicago Film Society is pleased to announce that it will be screening the rest of its current season at the Patio Theater at 6008 W. Irving Park. All screenings will occur on the dates originally scheduled, at 7:30 PM sharp (July 8th’s screening will be at 8:00 PM, though). The only difference is that they will be unfurled at the Patio Theater rather than the Portage.

The Patio? Didn’t they shut down for the summer?

Not exactly. The Patio has ceased its week-long runs of new Hollywood films, but the Patio is still very much open for the Northwest Chicago Film Society programs and select special events.

What took you so long, eh?
Following the abrupt closure of the Portage Theater, the Northwest Chicago Film Society explored several options for finishing out the season. Due to the overwhelmingly positive response of our patrons, we have opted to remain at the Patio. Before making this announcement, we had to secure permission to move all of our scheduled programs from our network of studios, archives, and private collectors. We’ve also been working to purchase and install a 16mm projector for the Patio’s projection booth, which will allow us to maintain the breadth of our programming.

OK, but why can’t you move back to the Portage?
I liked that place.
So did we. We had contracted with the Portage to present screenings through the end of 2013. This contract was broken when we found ourselves locked out of the Portage on May 25, with no indication of when the venue might re-open. This lockout has affected several other local groups as well. In the last month, we have not received any offer to return to the Portage. Furthermore, all of the relevant equipment (projectors, speakers, organ, etc.) has been removed from the theater (safely, by that equipment’s owners), so screening films there is literally impossible.

I understand, but what about the Patio? Didn’t I hear that their air conditioning system broke?
Yes, you heard that correctly. The Patio’s owner, Demetri Kouvalis, is currently working to secure funding to repair the air conditioner. It is a top priority, but we cannot guarantee that the system will be fixed in the next two months. The Patio remained comfortable for all of our June screenings, and we hope our patrons will bear with us through the summer. Climate control will be back to normal by September.

I’ve never been to the Patio. Isn’t it way the heck up on the Northwest Side?
Why, yes, it is! The Patio is at 6008 W. Irving Park Road, in the heart of the Irving-Austin Business District. There is ample street parking in the surrounding neighborhood. The Patio is also served by CTA Bus #80 (Irving Park) and #91 (Austin).

What shows should I attend for the remainder of the season?
All of them! But we’re biased. Highlights include the monocular Kirk Douglas in the brawling, brawny epic THE VIKINGS (July 17), arch sophisticate Joseph L. Manckiewicz’s rare THE LATE GEORGE APLEY (July 31), a pre-Tonto Johnny Depp in DEAD MAN (August 5), William Shatner as race-baiting demagogue in THE INTRUDER (Aug 14), and DIAMOND JIM, from an early screenplay by comedy master Preston Sturges (Aug 21).

What happens after the end of the current season on Aug. 28?
The Film Society is actively planning our next season at the Patio. Watch for a full schedule at the beginning of August — we still have lots of films we’re dying to show you!

Admission for all screenings will be $5

Monday, July 8 at 8:00 PM
BONJOUR TRISTESSE • Otto Preminger • 1958 • 94 min + 7 min cartoon
35mm from Sony Pictures Repertory
Spoiled brat Jean Seberg schemes to ruin her playboy father David Niven’s affair with Deborah Kerr. Like Clueless on the French Riviera, and possibly Preminger’s highest achievement. Screening with “Madeline” (Robert Cannon, 1952), an adaptation of the classic children’s book in 16mm.

Wednesday, July 10 at 7:30 PM
AN AMERICAN ROMANCE • King Vidor • 1944 • 121 min + 18 min short
restored 35mm from George Eastman House
Learn about the majesty of the American Dream and the sparkling promise of Industry in this Technicolor immigrant’s saga starring Brian Donlevy. Screening with a 16mm Technicolor industrial short produced by the Ford Motor Company, “Steel on the River Rouge” (1970).
Co-presented with portoluz (

Wednesday, July 17 at 7:30 PM
THE VIKINGS • Richard Fleischer • 1958 • 116 min + 7 min cartoon
35mm from Park Circus Films
Tony Curtis and one-eyed Kirk Douglas as the bawdiest brawlers of the eighth century in this violent widescreen epic beloved by junior high schoolers everywhere. Co-starring Janet Leigh and Ernest Borgnine. Screening with a cartoon TBA.

Monday, July 22 at 7:30 PM
THE LINEUP • Don Siegel • 1958 • 86 min + 16 min short
35mm from Sony Pictures Repertory
Another sadistic thriller from NWCFS favorite Don Siegel, featuring a totally deranged performance from Eli Wallach. Shot entirely on location in San Francisco, including an unforgettable scene at a skating rink. Screening with a 35mm print of “Caught on the Bounce” (Jules White, 1952) starring sometime-Stooge Joe Besser.

Wednesday, July 24 at 7:30 PM
THE MIRACLE MAN • Norman Z. McLeod • 1932 • 85 min + 21 min short
35mm from Universal Pictures
A film about gangsters, faith healers, shysters, and the transformative power of faith—and money. Features an all-star cast including Boris Karloff and Sylvia Sidney. A remake of Lon Chaney’s now-lost breakthrough film. Not available on DVD! Screening with a 16mm print of “Dangerous Females” (William Watson, 1929), an early sound comedy about hucksters, murder, and traveling evangelists starring the great Marie Dressler and Polly Moran.

Wednesday, July 31 at 7:30 PM
THE LATE GEORGE APLEY • Joseph L. Mankiewicz • 1947 • 97 min + 7 min cartoon
35mm from the 20th Century Fox vaults
Charming comedy of manners from ultra-sophisticated auteur Mankiewicz about the fading of nineteenth-century Boston aristocracy. Starring Ronald Colman in his last great performance and Peggy Cummins (Gun Crazy) in her American debut. Based on John P. Marquand’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Screening with a cartoon TBA.

Monday, August 5 at 7:30 PM
DEAD MAN • Jim Jarmusch • 1995 • 121 min + 7 min cartoon
35mm from Park Circus Films
Jarmusch’s hipster acid western with Johnny Depp and Robert Mitchum. “One of the ten best films of the 1990s” – Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader. Screening with a cartoon TBA

Wednesday, August 7 at 7:30 PM
SWING HIGH, SWING LOW • Mitchell Leisen • 1937 • 92 min + 8 min cartoon
restored 35mm from the Library of Congress
Carole Lombard’s apex in Leisen’s unclassifiable comedy-drama-musical with an alcoholic backbeat. A public domain film usually available only in very poor copies—except for this restored print from the Library of Congress. Screening with Popeye the Sailor in “Kickin’ the Conga ‘Round” (Fleischer Studios, 1942).

Wednesday, August 14 at 7:30 PM
THE INTRUDER • Roger Corman • 1962 • 84 min + 25 min short
35mm from the Academy Film Archive
A pre-Star Trek William Shatner stars as a race-baiting demagogue unleashed upon the Deep South. Exploitation cinema at its most personal and politically-incisive from grindhouse guignol specialist Corman. Screening with a 16mm print of Twilight Zone episode “A Nice Place to Visit” (John Brahm, 1960).
Co-presented with portoluz (

Monday, August 19 at 7:30 PM
ULZANA’S RAID • Robert Aldrich • 1972 • 103 min + 6 min cartoon
35mm from Universal Pictures
Burt Lancaster anti-western exemplifying the adventurism exhaustion of the Vietnam era. Screening with a Technicolor 35mm print of Woody Woodpecker cartoon “Fat in the Saddle” (Paul J. Smith, 1968), for levity.

Wednesday, August 21 at 7:30 PM
DIAMOND JIM • A. Edward Sutherland • 1935 • 88 min + 8 min cartoon
Larger-than-life portrait of American philanthropist and and professional over-eater “Diamond” Jim Brady. Features an early script from comedy master Preston Sturges and a dual performance from Jean Arthur. Not available on DVD!  Screening with a cartoon TBA.

Wednesday, August 28 at 7:30 PM
DAY OF WRATH • Carl Th. Dreyer • 1943 • 97 min + 7 min cartoon
Medieval masterpiece made during the Nazi Occupation.  A crucial influence on Arthur Miller’s The Crucible, and probably the only witch-burning drama to be unambiguously pro-witch. In Danish with English subtitles. Screening with a cartoon TBA.


Find the Northwest Chicago Film Society online here.

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