Cinema/Chicago News

Indigenous Peoples’ Day Film Spotlight

Happy Indigenous Peoples’ Day from all of us at the Chicago International Film Festival!

In honor of this holiday, we’re offering $3 off regular priced tickets of the Festival’s stellar selection of films exploring the lives of Indigenous people. Use promo code IPD3 at checkout to get the discount and support these incredible films! (Note: Discount does not apply to matinee screenings).

The Fever
Director: Maya Da-Rin

Justino, an indigenous man who works as a security guard in the Amazonian port city of Manaus, falls mysteriously ill just as his daughter prepares to leave for Brasilia to study medicine. As his fever continues unabated, Justino struggles to stay alert by day, while by night, a mysterious creature pursues him, pulling him back to his tribal lands. This uncanny, mesmerizing character study presents a finely drawn portrait of one man caught between two worlds.

Fordlandia Malaise
Director: Susana de Sousa Dias

Founded in 1928 by Henry Ford in an attempt to circumvent the British rubber monopoly, Fordlandia stands in ruin today. Its remains serve as a stark example of a failed colonial project. Fordlandia Malaise expertly utilizes archival material, drone footage, and interviews with locals to craft a portrait of place, time, myth, and memory.

La Llorona
Director: Jayro Bustamante

Thrilling and deeply moving, this reimagining of the legend of La Llorona transplants the ghost tale of the Weeping Woman to modern-day Guatemala. General Enrique Monteverde has been acquitted on technicalities after being found guilty of atrocities committed during the Civil War years earlier. Following his release, the general and his family are haunted by the spectacle of angry protesters on the streets and the specter inside their home.

Our Mothers
Director: César Díaz

Forensic anthropologist Ernesto works tirelessly to identify the remains of the victims of the Guatemalan Civil War. When he meets an old Mayan woman who might have information that could lead him to his father’s body, Ernesto embarks on a crusade that promises to bring solace to the wounded community and help him uncover his own roots. This subtle yet powerful social drama, winner of the best first feature award at Cannes, gives layered expression to the legacy of profound national trauma.

Once Upon a River
Haroula Rose

After her father’s violent death, Native American teenager Margo Crane flees down Michigan’s Stark River in search of her estranged mother. On the way, she encounters allies, enemies, danger, and the beauty of nature, all while coming to grips with her past and her own identity. A Midwestern Gothic coming-of-age fable set along the riverbanks, Chicago musician-filmmaker Haroula Rose’s debut feature is an evocative marriage of Winter’s Bone and Huckleberry Finn.

Song Without a Name
Director: Melina León

When Georgina, a penniless and pregnant young Quechuan woman, hears an ad for a women’s clinic in Lima, she travels to the free health center to give birth, only to have her newborn literally snatched away from her. The distraught mother frantically scours the city in search of her baby and for justice until she finds a journalist willing to take up her cause. Exacting black-and-white photography lends force and immediacy to this sorrowful, ripped-from-the-headlines tale of corruption, exploitation, and loss.

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