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Gene Siskel Film Center lists March screenings, events

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21st Annual Chicago European Union Film Festival ( March 9-April 5 ), the nation's largest showcase of EU cinema, features 61 premieres from all 28 EU nations. March 9 marks the opening of the festival, featuring Directions from Bulgaria, bringing poignancy and a zesty sense of humor to an episodic drama set in the streets of Sofia and unfolding in a series of taxi rides. All ticket holders are invited to attend a reception afterwards hosted by Dr. Ivan Anchev, Consul General of the Republic of Bulgaria.

More about the Chicago European Union Film Festival . .

Films that entertain, challenge, and delight are all here, including new work by some of Europe's best-known names, including: Paolo Taviani ( Rainbow: A Private Affair ); Raoul Peck ( The Young Karl Marx ); Wim Wenders ( Submergence ); Kornel Mundruczo ( Jupiter's Moon ); Arnaud Desplechin ( Ismael's Ghost ); Barbara Albert ( Mademoiselle Paradis ); Bruno Dumont ( Jeannette: The Childhood of Joan of Arc ); Tonie Marshall ( Number One ); Radu Jude ( The Dead Nation and Scarred Hearts ); Bohdan Slema ( Ice Mother ); Armando Iannucci ( The Death of Stalin ); and a special advance screening of Godard Mon Amour by Michel Hazanavicius.

This year's festival will be enhanced by an exciting and provocative array of guest filmmakers. Italian director Fabio Mollo will be present on March 10, with his touching There is a Light, in which a pregnant woman and a gay man form an odd couple in search of a future. A Dutch elementary school classroom becomes a microcosm of a better world in the remarkable documentary Miss Kiet's Children, for which co-director Peter Lataster will be present on March 16 and 18.

Dutch director Marleen Jonkman and casting director Rodrigo del Castillo will be present on March 23 and 24 for Messi and Maud, a road movie saga set in Chile. Sparkling Italian wines figure prominently in murder mystery The Last Prosecco, and director Antonio Padovan and associate producer Alessia Gatti will be present on March 24. A Prosecco tasting and short wine lecture will follow the second screening on March 27. Irish actor Barry Ward is tentatively scheduled to appear with March 30 and April 1 screenings of Maze, a tense drama based on Ireland's biggest jailbreak, involving the escape of 38 IRA prisoners.

The festival closes on Thursday, April 5, with The Young Karl Marx by Raoul Peck ( Oscar-nominated for I am Not Your Negro ), followed by a reception hosted by the European Union National Institutes for Culture ( EUNIC )—all ticket holders to the film are invited to attend.


Film/Lecture Series: Apocalypse Then: The Vietnam War on Film ( January 27-May 8 ) takes a close look at how the Vietnam War and its legacy was imagined and represented in film, from the perspective of both Southeast Asian and international filmmakers, with weekly Tuesday lectures by Nora Annesley Taylor, Alsdorf Professor of South and Southeast Asian Art at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Films presented in March and early April: Hearts and Minds ( March 3, 6 ); The Killing Fields ( March 13 ); The Missing Picture ( March 16, 20 ); and Chris Marker's Far from Vietnam ( April 3 ).

Conversations at the Edge ( February 15-April 19 ) is a dynamic weekly series of screenings, performances, and talks by groundbreaking media artists organized by SAIC's Department of Film, Video, New Media, and Animation in collaboration with the Gene Siskel Film Center and the Video Data Bank. Featuring programs in March and early April: Laura Huertas Millan: Ethnographic Fictions ( March 8; Huertas Millan appears in person for audience discussion ); Edward Owens: A Portrait Study ( March 22; critic Ed Halter will introduce the program ); Furusato ( March 29 ); and Hayoun Kwon: Films and Virtual Realities ( April 5; Kwon appears in person for audience discussion ).

Special events

Hollywood on State: Where You're the Star ( March 4 ): This year we go back to vintage Hollywood with food, film, and libations at Chicago's longest-running Oscars party. Tickets start at $100. Call 312-846-2600 to purchase.

Gene Siskel Film Center Movie Club ( March 28 ) examines This is Our Land, part of this year's 21st Annual Chicago European Union Film Festival. With its explicit references to Marine Le Pen and the Front National, this was the most controversial film of the year in France, although its convincing depiction of how right-wing "populist" movements soft-pedal their extremism has much wider relevance. Facilitator TBD. Each ticket-holder attending the post-screening discussion receives a complimentary beverage.

All screenings and events are at the Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, located at 164 N. State St.

Tickets to each screening—unless stated otherwise—are $11/general admission, $7/students, $6/Film Center members, and $5/Art Institute of Chicago ( AIC ) staff and School of the Art Institute of Chicago ( SAIC ) faculty, staff, and students. All tickets may be purchased at the Film Center Box Office. Both general admission and Film Center member tickets are available through the Gene Siskel Film Center's website or through the individual films' weblinks on . There is a surcharge of $1.50 per ticket. The Film Center and its box office are open 5:00 to 8:30 pm, Monday through Thursday; 1:00 to 8:30 pm, Friday; 2:00 to 8:30 pm, Saturday; and 2:00 to 5:30 pm, Sunday.


Gene Siskel Film Center members pay $5 per ticket to any screening in the Apocalypse Then: The Vietnam War on Film.

A Gene Siskel Film Center membership is a year-round ticket to great movies for only $6 per screening! Memberships are $50 ( Individual ) and $80 ( Dual ). For more information, call 312-846-2600 or

Discounted parking is available for $19 for 16 hours at the InterPark SELF-PARK at 20 E. Randolph St. A rebate ticket can be obtained from the Film Center Box Office.

The Film Center is located near CTA trains and buses. Nearest CTA L stations are Lake ( Red line ); State/Lake ( Brown, Green, Orange, Pink, Purple lines ); and Washington ( Blue line ). CTA bus lines serving State St.: 2, 6, 10, 29, 36, 62, 144, and 146.

For more information about the Film Center, call 312-846-2800 ( 24-hour movie hotline ) or 312-846-2600 ( general information, 9:00 am-5:00 p.m., Monday-Friday ), or visit .

About the Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Since 1972, the Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago has presented cutting edge cinema to an annual audience of 85,000. The Film Center's programming includes annual film festivals that celebrate diverse voices and international cultures, premieres of trailblazing work by today's independent filmmakers, restorations and revivals of essential films from cinema history, and insightful provocative discussions with filmmakers and media artists. Altogether, the Film Center hosts over 1,500 screenings and 200 filmmaker appearances every year. The Film Center was renamed the Gene Siskel Film Center in 2000 after the late, nationally celebrated film critic, Gene Siskel. Visit to learn more and find out what's playing today.

About the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

For 150 years, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago ( SAIC ) has been a leader in educating the world's most influential artists, designers, and scholars. Located in downtown Chicago with a fine arts graduate program ranked number two by U.S. News and World Report, SAIC provides an interdisciplinary approach to art and design as well as world-class resources, including the Art Institute of Chicago museum, on-campus galleries, and state-of-the-art facilities. SAIC's undergraduate, graduate, and post-baccalaureate students have the freedom to take risks and create the bold ideas that transform Chicago and the world—as seen through notable alumni and faculty such as Michelle Grabner, David Sedaris, Elizabeth Murray, Richard Hunt, Georgia O'Keeffe, Cynthia Rowley, Nick Cave, and LeRoy Neiman. Learn more at .

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