This week brings our annual Best of Chicago issue, including ten film-related critics’ picks by me, Ben Sachs, and Drew Hunt; and our readers’ poll, in which Music Box always seems to win Best Art House Venue, Best Commercial Venue, Best Large Venue, Best Small Venue, and Best Chicago Venue Ever, Fuck You for Even Thinking About Another Venue, Motherfucker. Talk about your loyal patrons.
This week’s long review considers a pair of documentaries about the commodification of knowledge: The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz, screening at Gene Siskel Film Center—hey, I’m sorry, that’s where it’s screening, OK?—and Ivory Tower, in limited release. And we’ve got fresh reviews of Heli, a Mexican drama about a poor family who face untold suffering after a soldier hides a stash of impounded cocaine in their home; Jackpot, a Norwegian black comedy about a massacre in a strip club, adapted from a novel by Jo Nesbø; Korengal, Sebastian Junger’s sequel to his acclaimed war documentary Restrepo; Miss Lovely, an Indian crime drama centering on the exploitation-film business of the 1980s; On Approval, a 1944 British comedy in the tradition of Oscar Wilde; and Third Person, the latest from writer-director Paul Haggis (Crash, In the Valley of Elah).
Best bets for repertory: Charles Vidor’s Cover Girl (1944), Saturday and Sunday at Music Box; Guy Hamilton’s Goldfinger (1964), Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at Logan; Harold Ramis’s Groundhog Day (1993), screening outdoors on Wednesday at Northwestern University Norris Center for the Arts; Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975), Friday through Monday at the Logan; Gregory La Cava’s My Man Godfrey (1936), Saturday at University of Chicago Doc Films; and Nicholas Ray’s Rebel Without a Cause (1955), Friday through Monday at the Logan.