Film Preview: Upcoming Final Weekend at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

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CHICAGO – The 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) is wrapping up on Sunday, October 23rd, but there is still a full weekend of events, including more Red Carpets, the Award Winners and the Best of the Fest screenings. For a sample of what to expect, Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com previews previews some upcoming films of the 58th CIFF.

Star58th CIFF FINAL WEEKEND: Capsule Reviews

Click the title for tickets and details …

”Call Jane” (USA) – What was America like for women seeking abortions in 1968, five years before the now overturned Roe v Wade? It ranged from horrific dark corner procedures to sympathetic providers. The film highlights the Jane Collective, a society of Chicago women who banded together to steer women to safer abortion procedures. “Call Jane” is a fictional recreation of the Collective, centering on Joy (Elizabeth Banks), who after obtaining her safe abortion through Jane, becomes a participant advocate. Although the film has many gaps in its context, it still provides an emphasis on abortion being a woman’s health issue (both physical and mental) and how sisters had to do it for themselves in the fight against the medical and political patriarchy. In this age of an activist Supreme Court and cynical Republicans STILL using women’s health rights as social/political control., the film is a reminder that we need more forgiveness and minding of our own business.

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The Great Silence (Denmark)
Photo credit: ChicagoFilmFestival.com

”Band” (Iceland) – This telling documentary plays like a fiction film. Renowned in the underground Reykjavik music scene since 2016 for their electro-punk sound and spandex-clad modernist dance moves, 40somethings Álfrún and her friends Saga and Hrefna double down on their artistic pursuits … they give themselves one year to become avant-garde pop stars … or relinquish their ambitions once and for all. If you ever been in a band (as I have most of my adult life, The Telepaths currently), this will play a bit more tragic than comic, but the friendships and passion is what is winning in this film, if not their popularity. A good companion for society’s current Iceland-mania, and Will Ferrell’s fictional comedy “Eurovision Song Contest.” Some subtitles.

”The Great Silence” (Denmark) – Recovering Catholic warning … this will be triggering. Alma is a novice living a secluded life in a convent. As she is preparing to take her perpetual vows to become a nun, her estranged brother Erik comes knocking. After a stint in prison, the emotionally wrecked recovering alcoholic wants to claim what is rightfully his … a share of the family inheritance, which Alma has already gifted to the order. When it becomes clear that Erik wants to extract more from her than money, Alma must decide how far she is willing to go to ensure his silence and keep their dark shared history from coming to light. As redeeming as a redemption film can be, it’s also a powerful statement on faith, religion and the human condition. Holy, holy, wholly. Subtitled.

”Nanny” (USA) – A multi-layered and engrossing story about a nanny in New York City named Aisha (Anna Diop), who works for an upscale couple caring for their child. She is originally from the African country of Senegal, and had to leave her young son behind to establish a new life in America. Full of unexpected twists, centered by a supernatural element that has roots in Aisha’s culture, the narrative goes into directions that are unexpected – including the wealthy couple who might not seem to be who they are. Written and directed by Nikyatu Jusu, this film won the U.S. Dramatic Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Festival for its incisive view of class structures and immigrant experiences in America, and the ramifications of decisions that are calculated into a survival instinct. Anna Diop will appear on behalf of the film.

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