I’ve never seen Kiss the Blood Off My Hands (1948), which signals the return of the Northwest Chicago Film Society to the Patio Theater (the boiler has been repaired and the theater is now heated again). On the other hand, no movie could possibly live up to the title Kiss the Blood Off My Hands, so I may not see it this time either.
We try not to fling around the stars too much around here, so that when we publish a four-star review it actually means something. This week we’ve got two: Ben Sachs writes about The Wind Rises, Hayao Miyazaki’s feature-length animation about the real-life aeronautics engineer who designed many of Japan’s warplanes during World War II, and I review In Secret, an excellent period noir adapted from Emile Zola’s novel Therese Raquin and starring Elizabeth Olsen and Oscar Isaac.
New movies reviewed in this week’s issue include About Last Night, a remake of the old Rob Lowe-Demi Moore rom-com; Black Out, a crime comedy from the Netherlands that recycles the premise of The Hangover; The Bright Day, an Iranian drama in which a schoolteacher tries to save a convicted murderer from execution; Endless Love, a remake of the old Brooke Shields heart-tugger; The Girls in the Band, a documentary about the forgotten women of jazz; The Last of the Unjust, Claude Lanzmann’s latest documentary exploration of the Holocaust; The New Black, which investigates the schism in the African-American community over gay marriage; The Pretty One, starring Zoe Kazan as identical twins; and Wedlock, an Iranian drama about two couples whose different social views threaten their friendship.
Best bets for repertory: Howard Hawks’s Bringing Up Baby (1938), Monday at University of Chicago Doc Films; Jack Smith’s Flaming Creatures and Kenneth Anger’s Scorpio Rising (both 1963), Tuesday at Gene Siskel Film Center; Ernest Schoedsack and Merian C. Cooper’s King Kong (1933), Friday at Block Museum of Art; Peter Bogdanovich’s The Last Picture Show (1971), Wednesday at Northbrook Public Library; Jacques Demy’s Model Shop (1969), Saturday and Monday at Gene Siskel Film Center; Preston Sturges’s Unfaithfully Yours (1948), with matinees Saturday and Sunday at Music Box; and Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables (1987), Wednesday at Doc.
On the special-events beat, consider Hate Crimes in the Heartland, a documentary chronicling the dark racial history of Tulsa, Oklahoma; Films by Steve Delahoyde, a program of comedy shorts by the local artist; and Chicago Filmmakers’ first annual Student Shoot-Out, a short-film competition open to any work submitted for a filmmaking class in Chicago.