Hello, 2018! If you're reading this, you made it out alive. As my father recently stated, “Well, at least 2017 won't be written on our gravestones.” That's one way of looking at it. So, while we've got the threat of a nuclear holocaust weighing over our heads to start out the New Year, the best way to deal with that is with escapism!
It may only be week one, but there's already quite a few cool genre things going on in Chicago this weekend. The galleries are opening around town, so I chose a few with dark art themes that may peak some interest. Unique band Xiu Xiu will perform Twin Peaks music live at Thalia Hall on Saturday (look 'em up, as they are pretty fantastic). Doc Films has a whole lineup of wild genre films this month, with Don't Look Now screening tonight! A lovely Edgar Allan Poe-inspired play begins, as well. Insidious: The Last Key and The Shape of Water are also in mainstream cinemas this weekend!
“Don't walk to the theater–RUN!”
DON'T LOOK NOW [35mm] - (Jan. 5th at 7pm & 9:30pm) Highly recommended horror classic starring Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie as a distraught couple grieving over their deceased young daughter while in Venice. A psychic claims their daughter's spirit is near, which causes further distress between the parents. Tense and impossible to forget. Doc Films, Max Palevsky Cinema, Ida Noyes Hall, University of Chicago, 1212 E. 59th St., Chicago, IL 60637. Plus, BLADE RUNNER 2049 screens Saturday at 7pm & Sunday at 3pm. On January 11th, catch TEETH at 7pm and RAW at 9:30pm.
BLADE RUNNER 2049 - (Jan. 5th-11th; closed Jan. 8th) Grab some drinks and enjoy a movie at the Brew & View! 6:30pm. Vic Theatre, 3145 N. Sheffield Ave., Chicago, IL. 6:30pm. ($5)
THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW - As always, the Rocky Horror fun continues with a full cast performance each Saturday at Midnight at the Hollywood Blvd. Cinema, 1001 W. 75th St., Woodridge, IL 60517. (630) 427-1880. RHPS
THE ROCKY HORROR PICTURE SHOW [35mm] - (Jan. 6th at midnight) Midnight madness with the shadowcast! Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
THE STRANGE ONES - (Jan. 5th-11th) Mysterious, atmospheric drama about two young men on the run. Times vary. Facets Cinémathèque, 1517 W. Fullerton, Chicago, IL 60614.
Xiu Xiu performs Music of Twin Peaks - (Jan. 6th) Experimental band Xiu Xiu was commissioned by Australia's Gallery of Modern Art to reinterpret the music from Twin Peaks for their exhibition, “David Lynch: Between Two Worlds.” The results were so exceptional, they've been able to go on tour around the world performing their own hypnotic take on Angelo Badalamenti's famous original score. Quicksails also performs. Doors open at 7:30pm; show starts at 8:30pm. Thalia Hall, 1807 S. Allport St., Chicago, IL 60608. (Note: only general admission tickets are still available.)
Zombie Outbreak Chicago - (Jan. 6th from 7pm-10pm) “Winter Walkerland” live action zombie apocalypse event in a 12,000 sq. ft. building. Basement of the Dead Haunted House, 48 W. New York St., Aurora, IL 60506. (Facebook event page)
THE ELEMENTALS (Bloody Reads #24) - (Jan. 10th at 9pm) Group discussion of Gothic horror book, The Elementals, by Michael McDowell, who also wrote screenplays for a few Tim Burton films. This event marks the 2-year anniversary of Bucket O' Blood's “Bloody Reads” horror book discussion series! Bucket O' Blood Books & Records, 3182 N. Elston, Chicago, IL 60618. BYOB.
LIVING LIGHT: Photos by the Light of Bioluminescent Bacteria - (Opening Jan. 5th, 6pm-9pm) Artist and scientist Hunter Cole creates images of human figures illuminated by the alluring, glowing blue light coming from bioluminescent bacteria. Symbolizing mortality, a time-lapse video screened will depict the bacteria growing and dying against a musical score based on protein sequences found in the bacteria. On the exhibit's last day, attendees will get to see the glowing bacteria in person through a living microbial art installation. Cole has a PhD in genetics and teaches a Biology Through Art course at Loyola University Chicago. ARC Gallery, 2156 N. Damen, Chicago, IL. Exhibition runs through January 27th, 2018. Gallery hours: Wed.-Sat. 12pm-6pm; Sundays 12pm-4pm.
RAPTURE Dark Art Exhibition - (Oct. 28th-Jan. 7th, 2018) LAST CHANCE! Group dark art show featuring artists of all skill levels from around the world. 18+. Viewings available Wednesdays through Sundays 2pm-7pm. Aeon Gallery, 10331 Main St., Richmond, IL 60071.
ELIZABETH ERNST: Shady Grove Nursing Home - (Jan. 5th-Feb. 24th) Opening reception is Friday from 5pm-8pm. Solo exhibition with a focus on aging circus entertainers who have now retired to a nursing home. Her work is quite interesting. Catherine Edelman Gallery, 300 W. Superior, Lower Level, Chicago, IL 60654.
LEE GRANTHAM: Reverse Acrylic Paintings - (Jan. 5th-Feb. 24th) Opening reception is Friday from 5:30pm-7:30pm. Solo exhibition of stylized pop culture imagery painted in reverse on Plexiglass. Jean Albano Gallery, 215 W. Superior, Chicago, IL 60654.
RODIN: Sculptor and Storyteller - (through March 4th, 2018) Seeing Auguste Rodin's famous sculptures up close and personal is definitely an experience to remember and cherish. Hours. Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S. Michigan, Chicago, IL.
WILLIAM BLAKE AND THE AGE OF AQUARIUS - (through March 11th, 2018) British visionary, poet, and artist who greatly impacted American artists. This exhibit seeks to display those influences of non-conformity and self-expression. Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, 40 Arts Circle Dr., Evanston, IL 60208.
STAGE (Horror, Sci-Fi, Macabre):
Nevermore: The Imaginary Life and Mysterious Death of Edgar Allan Poe - (Jan. 5th-28th) Black Button Eyes Productions presents the Chicago premiere of this musical at The Edge Theater, 5451 N. Broadway, Chicago, IL 60640. (On Jan. 19th, celebrate a toast to Poe's birthday after the show.)
Hitch*Cocktails - (Fridays at 10pm) Alfred Hitchcock-themed improv skits based on audience suggestions. Live jazz band, parlor games. Actors must drink as the plot thickens. The Annoyance Theatre & Bar, 851 W. Belmont, Chicago, IL 60657. Runs through March 23rd, 2018.
Improvised Twilight Zone - (Jan. 7th at 8pm) Performers create three all-new episodes from audience suggestions. The Annoyance Theatre & Bar, 851 W. Belmont, Chicago, IL 60657. Runs through Feb. 11th, 2018.
TOURS, ESCAPE ROOM:
Chicago Ghost Tours App - A free app for enjoying audio and photo tours of Chicago's Haunted Archer Avenue is available, courtesy of Edward Shanahan, a fellow ChicagoNOW blogger (check out his blog, Chicago Paranormal & Spiritual). He is also a psychic and paranormal host who has worked on making his app a great addition to fans of Haunted Archer. The app includes 16 locations and 6 cemeteries. Free download! Shanahan also has a free online magazine.
Trapped in a Room with a Zombie - Room Escape adventures where guests must figure out clues and puzzles to escape a room they share with a snarling, chained-up zombie. Ages 14+ or must have parent. Fine Arts Building, 408 S. Michigan, Chicago, IL 60605.
Chicago Hauntings Bus Tours - One of the longest-running ghost tours in Chicago, each 2.5 hour tour is led by founder, paranormal investigator, and author Ursula Bielski and her partner, author David Cowan. Routine stops include locations of the St. Valentine's Day Massacre, Death Alley, gangland sites, murder sites, and more. Departs at the Congress Hotel. For schedules, all tours, and background information, please see ChicagoHauntings.com.
B-FEST - (Jan. 26th) Annual 24-hr movie festival in Evanston returns!
SLAY BELLS RING - (Jan. 13th, 2018) Murder Mystery Dinner. Skellington Manor, 420 18th St., Rock Island, IL 61201. (Dec. 16th already sold out, so book your tickets soon!)
THE DARK CRYSTAL - (Feb. 25th & 28th) In theaters soon! Tickets go on sale January 12th.
Windy City Horrorama Film Festival - (April 27th-29th) New independent film festival to debut at the Davis Theater, 4614 N. Lincoln Avenue, Chicago, IL 60625.
Times are subject to change.
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