This weekend, the city will be bursting at the seams with horror madness. Two new Chicago film festivals will debut independent films from all over the world, but only one will strictly offer horror. DePaul celebrates the genre with a huge event filled with a full day of panels with horror experts and guest speakers.
It's also a big weekend for horror screenings, which also includes gems on 35mm like The Silence of the Lambs, Vertigo, and Dark City. WildClaw Theatre opens their 10th season with horror play Future Echoes. Whatever amazing event you decide to choose, have a fantastic weekend. Hey, no snow!
“Don't walk to the theater–RUN!”
GRACE JONES: Bloodlight and Bami - (April 27th-May 3rd) An unconventional documentary about a brilliant, unconventional woman, Grace Jones. The doc offers insight into both her personal and professional life as a mother, businesswoman, and performer. Times vary. The Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
VERTIGO [35mm] - (April 27th at 2pm & 28th at 1:15pm) Two 35mm screenings of Hitchcock's classic mystery thriller. Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N. State Street, Chicago, IL 60601.
CINEMA PARADISO - (April 28th at 7:30pm) One night only! One of the best films about the magic of movies. The film is told in flashbacks as a filmmaker recounts his youth as a child growing up in Italy and remembers details from his strong friendship with the projectionist at his favorite cinema house, Cinema Paradiso. Highly recommended! Wilmette Theatre, 1122 Central Avenue, Wilmette, IL 60091.
THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS [35mm] - (April 29th at 11:30am) 27 years later, this film still resonates due to a chilling story and impeccable performances. The Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
DARK CITY [35mm] - (April 27th & 28th) 20th anniversary screenings Friday and Saturday at midnight. The Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
THE ENDLESS - (April 26th-May 3rd) Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead team up for another interesting entry in the genre following indie horror favorites SPRING and RESOLUTION. In The Endless, after receiving a strange video message, two brothers decide to revisit a UFO death cult they'd escaped a decade earlier in the hopes of finding closure on this trip. Times vary. (DCP) The Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Avenue, Chicago, IL 60613.
Video Nasties Movie Night - (April 29th) Bo-Deadly presents a free night of viewing Video Nasty films: Zombie (1979), Night School (1981), and The Burning. Bonus feature TBA. Beat Kitchen, 2100 W. Belmont, Chicago, IL 60618. Beat Kitchen website.
A QUIET PLACE at the Drive-in! - (April 27th-29th at 10:55pm) New digital projection. Box office opens at 7pm. (Avengers: Infinity War also screens at 8:15pm) Adults $10; Kids ages 5-11 $5; free entry for kids under age 5. Cascade Drive-In, 1100 E. North Avenue, West Chicago, IL 60185.
A QUIET PLACE - (Through May 2nd) Times vary. Logan Theatre, 2646 N. Milwaukee, Chicago, IL 60647.
LABYRINTH - (April 29th, May 1st & 2nd) Fathom Events presents a 3-day theatrical celebration of this Jim Henson/David Bowie classic. Type in your zip code to find a theater near you.
SEEING WITH THE MIND'S EYE: 3D Works with Marc Downie - (April 27th at 7pm) A showcase of Mr. Downie's early 3D work. Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St., Chicago, IL 60637.
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
A Celebration of Slashers - (April 28th, 9am-6pm) Celebrate slasher films in recognition of Halloween's 40th anniversary at the Pop Culture Conference at DePaul with horror-themed panels (see link for the list of speakers!) and special keynote speaker, director Rachel Talalay (Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare, Tank Girl, Riverdale, Doctor Who) and Dr. Wickham Clayton, lecturer in Film History and Theory, University for the Creative Arts, Farnham, UK. The Slasher Film Funhouse panel at 4:45pm will focus on ideal spectatorship within the sub-genre. DePaul Loop Campus, Daley Building, 247 S. State Street, Chicago, IL.
Chicago Independent Film (+TV) Festival - (April 28th & 29th) The Chicago Independent Film and TV Festival is a new festival in town that supports film work by both international, national, and local filmmakers. Films will be screened at two locations: The New 400 Theatres (7101 N. Glenwood Avenue, Chicago, IL 60626) on the 28th and at Damen Cinema (Loyola University) on the 29th. Facebook Event Page.
Windy City Horrorama Film Festival - (April 27th-29th) New independent film festival marks its debut at the Davis Theater this weekend. Founded by Matt Storc (Horror Society) and Alex Vazquez (“After Dark” programmer at the Chicago International Film Festival), their aim is to support independent filmmakers of all levels. The Chicago horror showcase will take place at 3:45pm on Saturday with Stephen Tramontana's short film “EYELASH,” Jason Coffman's feature film HOUSESITTERS, and Daniel DelPurgatorio's short “THIRD WHEEL.” All 3 directors will be in attendance! Speaking of attendees, meet the cast and crew of CHICAGO ROT after the screening on Sunday at 6:15pm, followed by the closing party in the Carbon Arc Bar where RESTORATION will be screening. 4614 N. Lincoln Avenue, Chicago, IL 60625. Full schedule HERE.
Bloody Reads Book Club - (May 2nd at 9pm) Join Bucket O' Blood for their monthly horror book reading club. This month, they're discussing Bernard Taylor's book, The Moorstone Sickness. BYOB. Bucket O' Blood Books & Records, 3182 N. Elston, Chicago, IL 60618.
Bad Axe Throwing - (Days/times vary) You know you want to... Group rates apply or just do a walk-in for $20/hr. Bad Axe Chicago, 2828 N. Clark (Atrium Level), Chicago, IL. (888) 435-0001.
STAGE (Horror, Sci-Fi, Macabre):
WildClaw Theatre's FUTURE ECHOES - (April 27th-May 27th) Celebrating 10 years of bringing horror to the Chicago stage, WildClaw Theatre presents a new horror production written by Paul Foster and directed by Norine McGrath. A group of college friends reunite at a dinner party and reminisce about the past, soon realizing that time is no longer on their side. The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago, IL 60622.
THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME - (April 20th-May 5th) Based on the classic Victor Hugo novel with songs from the Disney animated feature. Jedlicka Performing Arts Center, 3801 S. Central Avenue, Cicero, IL 60804. Get half-off discounted tickets on Goldstar.com!
DOWN THE ROCKY ROAD AND ALL THE WAY TO BEDLAM - (April 5th-May 13th) Otherworld Theatre presents a sci-fi cyberpunk tale of a broken family dealing with the death of a daughter. An android named Zelazny struggles with conflicted feelings, dealing with her own evolution while the house of Bedlam is collapsing. Nox Arca Theatre, 4001 N. Ravenswood #405, Chicago, IL 60613.
SWEENEY TODD: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street - (March 9th-April 29th) In the mood for bloody meat pies and sweet revenge? See website for information on dinner packages. No Exit Cafe, 6970 N. Glenwood, Chicago, IL 60626.
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 May 25th, 2018.
Svengoolie Coffin & More - One of the cooler things to do on a tight budget 6 days out of the week! The highlight for horror fans, of course, is the Svengoolie exhibit with his original coffin and the show's set, along with pieces from Shock Theatre. There are plenty of other cool things to see related to Chicago television and film, like a large display of items from Bozo's Circus, retro TV sets, journalism history, advertising artifacts, and so much more. The SNL exhibit is also stationed in the building. Museum of Broadcast Communications, 360 N. State, Chicago, IL 60654.
Gun Ballet: The Aestheticization of Violence in Video Games - (March 2nd-June 24th) View the most common styles of violence in video game history, ranging from beautiful to excessive. Video Game Art Gallery, 2418 W. Bloomingdale #102, Chicago, IL 60647. Regular hours: Wednesdays 5pm-8pm; Sundays noon-5pm or call by appointment 773-668-6797.
On/Off Grid - (April 6th-June 3rd) Curated by Lydia Fu in the Gallery/Café, this exhibit displays contemporary Asian American and Asian Diasporic artists who've explored ideas and dreams regarding society's relationships with technology. Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N. State Street, Chicago, IL 60601.
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.
Mind Trap Escape Rooms - Solve the clues to get out within 60 minutes! 299 Montgomery Rd., Montgomery, IL 60538. (630) 216-9609.
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.
Chicago Critics Film Festival - (May 4th-10th) Special guests Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Joseph Kahn, Bo Burnham, Paul Schrader. Chicago film premieres, 25th Anniversary 35mm screening of JURASSIC PARK, film shorts, and much more.
Near Death Experience with Neil Tobin - (May 5th & 6th) Interactive, mortality-themed theatre with Neil Tobin. May Chapel, Rosehill Cemetery, 5800 N. Ravenswood, Chicago, IL.
FLESH: IVAN ALBRIGHT artwork at the Art Institute - (May 4th-Aug. 5th) A nice selection of ghoulishly macabre works by Ivan Albright will be on display at the Art Institute of Chicago this spring!
Chicago Zombie Prom - (May 5th from 8pm-2am) Located at the Cubby Bear. 21+. Tickets are available now!
Juggernaut Film Festival - (June 2nd & 3rd) Music Box Theatre. More info soon.
Times are subject to change.
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