Reimagining the classic samurai picture, this quiet, elegant drama follows the Inoyama family as they serve their lord not with the sword but with the abacus. With a sense of honor as exacting as any warrior’s and a rigorous ethic of honesty even in the midst of dire poverty, Naoyuki Inoyama (nicknamed “the Mad Abacus” by his rivals) distinguishes himself as a hero for the approaching modern age.
Japanese with subtitles, 125 min.
Belgium / France / Ireland
The dizzying heights and dark depths of obsessive young love are depicted with dreamlike lyricism in this haunting film. Sent to live with their aunt in France, Irish 12
English, French with subtitles, 80 min.
In 1980s Poland, as dissatisfaction with the Soviet regime is slowly coming to a boil, high-schooler Janek and the other members of his punk band use their music to rail against the establishment. Offstage, Janek is much more conflicted. With a naval-officer father and a girlfriend whose own father is under investigation by the state, Janek’s coming of age is fraught with conflict between his ideals and his desire to protect the ones he loves.
Polish with subtitles, 95 min.
Set against the backdrop of the 2008 economic crisis, this ravishingly beautiful erotic drama celebrates love even when it cannot be fully embraced. The fledgling relationship between swimming instructor Kafka and successful businessman Daniel is threatened by Kafka’s dual battle with drug addiction and his own questions about his sexual identity. Their feelings and futures become hopelessly entangled as complications and obstacles multiply.
English, Cantonese with subtitles, 97 min.
Lucio loves his wife Diana desperately, but her losing battle with depression prompts him to commit her to an institution in the hopes that their radical methods will cure her. Diana returns home only a few days later, pronounced healthy yet deeply altered by the treatments she underwent. Festival alum Alejandro Chomski creates an atmosphere of disquieting surreality with his arresting, off-center visual style in this Kafkaesque tale of mental illness.
Spanish with subtitles, 83 min.
Join the international filmmakers and jury members for the Chicago International Film Festival’s Awards Night. Enjoy cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and the awards presentation honoring this year’s winning filmmakers in the Main Competition, New Directors Competition, Docufest, Short Films, and Intercom competitions. Set in the famed Pump Room in the Ambassador East Hotel, this elegant evening is sure to feature the industry’s rising stars.