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2010 — 46th Chicago International Film Festival

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Hairdresser, The Hairdresser, The

Director: Dorris Dörrie

Big is beautiful in this colorful comedy about an obese stylist who bears the burdens of her size with indefatigable good humor. Kathi, having recently relocated to Berlin with her teenage daughter after her husband left her for a younger, thinner woman, decides to open her own salon when she is refused employment because of her appearance. To fund this new venture, she defies adversity and takes on her most outrageous challenge yet.

German with subtitles, 106 min.

Happy Housewife Happy Housewife

Director: Antoinette Beumer

Carice van Houten (Black Book) stars as Lea, a career woman who finally agrees with her husband to have a child. But their idyllic life is shattered when the baby’s arrival triggers severe postpartum depression and reopens buried psychological wounds in Lea. Institutionalized and distrusted by her husband, Lea struggles to exorcise her demons and reclaim her old happiness in this pathos-filled drama.

Dutch with subtitles, 100 min.

Heartbeats Heartbeats

Director: Xavier Dolan

French-Canadian prodigy Xavier Dolan (I Killed My Mother) returns with a hyper-stylized ode to the pleasure and pain of young love. Dolan costars with the devastatingly stylish Monia Chokri as best friends vying for the affections of a beautiful but elusive Adonis named Nicholas. Swooning romanticism is offset by a wry sense of humor, displaying a mastery of form that marks Dolan as one of the most promising young talents working today.

French with subtitles, 102 min.

Hereafter Hereafter

Director: Clint Eastwood

From four-time Oscar® winner Clint Eastwood, Hereafter tells the story of three people who are touched by death in different ways. George (Matt Damon) is a blue-collar American who has a special connection to the afterlife. On the other side of the world, Marie (Cécile De France), a French journalist, has a near-death experience that shakes her reality. And when Marcus, a London schoolboy, loses the person closest to him, he desperately needs answers. Each on a path in search of the truth, their lives will intersect, forever changed by what they believe might—or must—exist in the hereafter.


Hitler in Hollywood Hitler in Hollywood

Director: Frédéric Sojcher

What if WWII-era Hollywood took advantage of the war to undermine the burgeoning rival film industry in Europe? That’s the uproarious premise of this playful mockumentary, which follows Pulp Fiction’s Maria de Medeiros

English, French, Portuguese with subtitles, 86 min.

Honeymooner Honeymooner

Director: Col Spector

Dumped by his fiancée just before their wedding, hapless everyman Fran (Gerard Kearns, Looking for Eric) spends what would have been his honeymoon slouching despondently from one day to the next and fending off dubious romantic advice from his cocksure buddies. An unexpected taxicab smooch from the beautiful Jess shakes him out of his rut, but can he conquer his Woody Allen

75 min.

Housemaid, The Housemaid, The

South Korea
Director: Sang-soo Im

Im Sang-soo reimagines a classic of Korean cinema with this erotic thriller centering on the illicit affair between a wealthy, married pianist and his housekeeper. Naïve Eun-yi, newly hired on as a maid and nanny, is seduced by the master of the house, which doesn’t do her any favors when it comes to his pampered, pregnant young wife. But when Eun-yi herself becomes pregnant, she inadvertently ignites a powder keg of scheming and intrigue.

Korean with subtitles, 106 min.

How I Ended the Summer How I Ended the Summer

Director: Aleksei Popogrebsky

The desolate frigidity of the Arctic Circle isn’t enough to dampen the slow boil of anxiety and madness that percolates beneath the surface at a remote science station, where veteran technician Sergei and callow but eager newcomer Pavel struggle to cope with the tedium. Their stress reaches a snapping point when Pavel receives a radio transmission bearing bad news and, afraid of his saturnine partner’s reaction, goes to extreme lengths to keep it a secret.

Russian with subtitles, 124 min.

Human Condition, The Human Condition, The

Director: Multiple

This spring, we invited filmmakers to submit original 60-second films examining the nature of the human condition. The finalists in this showcase have been selected for their bold originality, skillful execution, and ability to convey a strong message in a short timeframe. You’ll also have the opportunity to vote for your favorite film, with the top three winning cash prizes. Why not submit for the next 60

30 min.