Monthly Archives: June 2013

Enter the House of Harrington – See Games and Read Harrington’s Memoir, the Latest Release from Drag City

Due to circumstances beyond our control, the Northwest Chicago Film Society will not be screening films at the Portage Theater this week. We apologize for the inconvenience. This screening has been moved to the Music Box Theatre.

14A_HarringtonWednesday, July 3 @ 7:00pm at the Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Ave.

Directed by Curtis Harrington • 1967
Newlywed socialites James Caan and Katharine Ross sure like them some games: their Manhattan brownstone is littered with Pop Art and pinball machines. (Their chic lifestyle was loosely based on the marriage of Harrington’s friends Dennis Hopper and Brooke Hayward.) But this couple is hardly prepared when exotic enchantress and traveling cosmetics saleswoman Simone Signoret proposes some new games that prove kinkier than pinochle. Occult rituals, mummification, and murder are all on the menu for this threesome in this widescreen, Day-Glo freak show from macabre master Curtis Harrington. After a quartet of avant-garde psychodramas, the dreamy independent feature Night Tide, and a quickie for Roger Corman cobbled together from Soviet sci-fi stock footage, Harrington finally had a chance to realize his boyhood dream of making a bona fide Universal monster movie. (He also managed to sneak in a cameo for his cat.) (KW)
100 min • Universal Pictures • 35mm from Universal
Preceded by: “Puce Moment” (Kenneth Anger, 1949) – 16mm – 6 min – Courtesy Canyon Cinema
“The Wormwood Star” (C. Harrington, 1955) – 16mm – 10 min – Courtesy Academy Film Archive

Tickets now available online at Brown Paper Tickets.

Co-presented by Drag City, publishers of Curtis Harrington’s posthumous memoir Nice Guys Don’t Work in Hollywood.


And come back next week for the teeny-boppingest soap opera masterpiece from Otto Preminger

14B_Bonjour TristesseMonday, July 8 @ 8:00pm at the Patio Theater, 6008 W. Irving Park Rd.
Directed by Otto Preminger • 1958
Hoping to make amends to Iowa ingénue Jean Seberg after her critically reviled debut in Saint Joan, Otto Preminger cast her as the sullen Cecile in his adaptation of Françoise Sagan’s racy best-selling novel Bonjour Tristesse. A spoiled brat with a semi-incestuous fixation on her hard-drinking playboy father (David Niven, essentially continuing his performance from Preminger’s The Moon is Blue), Seberg plots to sabotage his grown-up affair with fashion designer Deborah Kerr. Teaming up with some of the key craftspeople of the classical French cinema (photographer Georges Périnal, composer Georges Auric), Preminger emerged with a bizarre and captivating hybrid: shot on location in color and CinemaScope on the French Riviera, Bonjour Tristesse credibly proposes the teenage soap opera as a form of high art. Screenwriter Arthur Laurents would attempt the same gambit three years later in his big-screen version of West Side Story, but no film comes close to Bonjour Tristesse in taking adolescent sexuality as the most consequential subject in the world. (KW)
94 min • Columbia Pictures • 35mm vault print from Sony Pictures Repertory
Preceded by: “Madeline” (Robert Cannon, 1952) – 16mm – 7 min


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