Alex Ross Perry, one of the smartest and most ambitious young indie filmmakers around, comes to Chicago this week to chat with hometown director Joe Swanberg at the Saturday PM screenings of Perry’s new Queen of Earth, starring Elisabeth Moss as a young woman who’s losing her grip on sanity; it’s the subject of Ben Sachs’s long review this week. Also, I take a look at Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine, a documentary profile of the personal-computer visionary by director Alex Gibney (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, Casino Jack and the United States of Money, Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer). British director Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) comes across the pond with a Jobs biopic in early October, starring Michael Fassbender.
New movies in town this week include I Touched All Your Stuff, a Brazilian documentary (or is it a mockumentary?) about a mild-mannered American trapped in a South American prison; Meru, a documentary in which three mountain climbers try to scale the title Himalayan peak: Rosenwald, a documentary profile of the Chicagoan who turned Sears Roebuck into a retail titan and built more than 5,000 public schools across the segregated south; Stray Dog, a documentary profile of a Missouri biker and Vietnam POW-MIA activist by Debra Granik (Winter’s Bone, Down to the Bone); 7 Chinese Brothers, the latest comedy from Bob Byington (RSO (Registered Sex Offender)); The Transporter Refueled, a new installment in the durable action franchise; and A Walk in the Woods, with Robert Redford and Nick Nolte as two old geezers hiking the Appalachian Trail.
Best bets for repertory: Satyajit Ray’s Apu trilogy (Pather Panchali, Aparajito, The World of Apu) at Gene Siskel Film Center; a pair of Italian features by the Taviani brothers (Padre Padrone and The Night of the Shooting Stars), also at Film Center; Federico Fellini’s La Dolce Vita (1960), Sunday and Wednesday at Film Center; John Waters’s Female Trouble (1975), midnight Friday and Saturday at Music Box; Dziga Vertov’s The Man With the Movie Camera (1929), Tuesday at Film Center with a lecture by critic Fred Camper; and John Boorman’s Zardoz (1974), midnight Friday and Saturday at Landmark’s Century Centre.
Here’s an extraspecial revival for those with wheels: Northbrook Public Library, which recently finished renovating its theater space, presents the Chicago-area premiere of Sherlock Holmes, a 1916 silent version of the popular stage play starring William Gillette that was shot here at the Essanay Studio.
RIP Wes Craven, whose 1984 classic A Nightmare on Elm Street screens midnight Friday and Saturday at the Vic.