Chicago horror fans usually have plenty of options for making plans in the city and this weekend is no exception. A considerable amount of events are happening over the course of the weekend, so I've collected ten enticing ideas for your entertainment. Being that it is Taste of Chicago weekend, it's a great time to avoid the sweltering downtown crowds and sit in a cool, dark movie theater or catch a great event.
G-FEST - July 12-14. The largest ever convention for fans of Godzilla and Japanese monsters! This one has to be seen to be believed. From suit actors to the people who made them, the guests have plenty of amazing stories to tell. There will be Q & A's with the actors and crew from the Godzilla films, contests, gaming, various kaiju movies, a huge dealer's room and more. It's a family-friendly event, so kids can enjoy activities such as arts and crafts. Be sure to check the schedule.
MAX BROOKS ZOMBIE LECTURE - July 12. Max Brooks, author of World War Z and The Zombie Survival Guide, will speak at Harper College at 7pm tonight. He'll be teaching “10 Lessons for Surviving a Zombie Attack.” Read more about this event in my previous post.
CHICAGO ZOMBIE PROM - July 12. It's back! Presented by the Zombie Army Productions, this event requires undead attire and makeup (which you may obtain by a makeup artist there for a $10 fee) and will go from 9pm to 2am! Free buffet from 9pm to 10:30pm (please don't let your rotting carcass parts fall into the tasty treats! It happens to the best of us.) Zombie Prom King and Queen Contest, Zombie Prom couple's photo booth, prizes, live zombie band and zombie DJ. Bottom Lounge, 1375 W. Lake Street, Chicago, IL. 21+ only. ZombiePromChicago.com
TENDER ANATOMY ART EXHIBIT - July 12-August 17. Packer Schopf Gallery's opening reception for four new artists begins tonight from 5-8pm. Artists include: Hank Feeley, Thomas C. Jackson, Vesna Jovanovic and Dave Ford. The artist that may be of particular interest to fans of the macabre is Vesna Jovanovic, whose “Tender Anatomy” series displays floating ribs, multicolored intestines, and vertebrae! Just creepy enough to make us smile. 942 W. Lake Street, Chicago, IL 60607. 312-226-8984. Be sure to visit Vesna's site.
MANIAC - July 12-13. Franck Khalfoun's 2013 version starring Elijah Wood screens at Music Box Theatre for some midnight mayhem. Fans of the original who haven't yet seen it may be very surprised. It's good. 3733 N. Southport.
THE UNHOLY THREE - July 13. If you're up early Saturday, why not catch this silent classic in 35mm with live organ accompaniment by Dennis Scott at noon? It's a bizarre tale with “The Unholy Three” being a ventriloquist, a midget, and a strongman who desert the circus to form their own nefarious gang. A must for Tod Browning or Lon Chaney completists. $10 gen. admission or $8 students and seniors. 3733 N. Southport.
MUD - July 13. A 35mm presentation of MUD will screen at 2:00pm and 7:30pm in the Northbrook Public Library Auditorium for FREE. Starring Matthew McConaughey and Reese Witherspoon. Post-screening discussion. 1201 Cedar Lane, Northbrook, IL 60062.
THE FLY STAGE ADAPTATION - Through July 20. “The <Mutant> Fly” is a stage adaptation of David Cronenberg's 1986 film The Fly presented by Bare Knuckle Productions, performing the same ideas of genetic mutation, the grotesque transformation of Seth Brundle after a fly enters his teleportation machine, and his girlfriend's struggle to help him while his mind and body quickly change into something not quite human. WARNING: Violence, gore, profanity and nudity. Not recommended for children! 4001 N. Ravenswood #603-C, Chicago, IL 60613. 773-998-2671. Facebook event page.
SVENGOOLIE NIGHT - July 13. Join the fun at 7pm Saturday night at The Squared Circle with guest Rich Koz aka horror host Svengoolie! Eat dinner and watch an episode of Svengoolie on the TV, featuring a Lucha Libre movie with masked wrestlers vs. monsters! The pro wrestling-themed restaurant (2418 N. Ashland Avenue) is owned by Lisa Marie Varon, otherwise known as TNA Impact's “Tara,” formerly WWE's “Victoria.” Dine on pizza, burgers, or possibly even the new “Svengoolie Burger.” The Red Eye did a detailed article on the event here. 773-904-8170.
There's an 11th option that is pretty important. PACIFIC RIM opens this weekend, and in order for it to be a box office success, we need to get butts in seats now! Why? A) It's directed by Guillermo del Toro (The Devil's Backbone, Hellboy, Pan's Labyrinth), who can do no wrong in my eyes. B) It's an original story and its success could mean *gasp!* more original stories (especially of the monster variety) will be green-lit by studios for production instead of yet another questionable remake. Let's make this happen! Giant monsters! The majority of reports are very positive and many have said the theatrical experience felt like being a kid again. This may be the kind of movie kids will be in awe of the same way we were spellbound by films like Star Wars as kids. I can't wait.
However you choose to spend your weekend, enjoy it!
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