Cinema/Chicago News

TAKE 2: Virtual Screenings in April 2020

Published: March 20, 2020  |  Filed under: Festival News

Vitalina Varela film still

Vitalina Varela is virtually screening now through the Gene Siskel Film Center.


For this month’s TAKE 2, we’re excited to highlight special virtual screenings taking place online through Chicago’s arthouse theaters to keep filmgoing alive from home. The below virtual screenings, a selection of films that screened at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival along with a few others, give the opportunity to see new releases while still supporting our city’s theaters that have been forced to shutter during the pandemic.

Virtual Screenings


Director: Corneliu Porumboiu
Global Currents, 55th Chicago International Film Festival

In this wildly offbeat heist movie, Cristi, a corrupt middle-aged cop, travels from Bucharest to the Canary Islands to study an ancient Aboriginal whistling language that allows criminals to communicate without fear of detection. Soon, though, he is caught in a classic film noir set up—at odds with gangsters and in love with femme fatale Gilda. Porumboiu’s trademark deadpan wit keeps the proceedings moving apace, crafting a slick and surprising caper flick.

Virtual Screening Details:
Watch now via the Music Box Theatre and Magnolia Pictures


Directors: Diao Yinan
Global Currents, 55th Chicago International Film Festival

“Artfully kinked…unapologetically down-and-dirty B-movie filmmaking.”—Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times

When small-time mob leader Zhou Zenong (Hu Ge) accidentally kills a cop, a dead-or-alive bounty is placed on his head, forcing him on the lam from both the police as well as dangerous gangsters out for the reward. Hiding out at the Wild Goose Lake, Zhou becomes entangled with a beautiful, enigmatic woman (Gwei Lun Mei), who has mysterious intentions of her own.

Virtual Screening Details:
Watch now via the Gene Siskel Film Center and Film Movement


Directors: Pedro Costa
Silver Hugo: Jury Award, International Competition, 55th Chicago International Film Festival

“A breathtakingly gorgeous movie about love, death and immigration. “—Monica Castillo,

One of the most critically acclaimed releases of the year, the latest from Portuguese director Pedro Costa returns to the sprawling back alleys and shantytowns of Lisbon that he has been documenting for a quarter of a century to tell the story of Vitalina Varela, the bewitching nonprofessional costar of Costa’s last feature HORSE MONEY. Separated from her husband for decades, Vitalina journeys from her home in Cape Verde to Lisbon for a long-delayed reunion, only to be met with news of his demise just days before her arrival. Moving into the crumbling house he left behind, Vitalina endeavors to make a new life in Portugal, finding tenuous solidarity within a fragmented, impoverished immigrant community (in particular, with an anguished priest played by frequent Costa collaborator Ventura) while mourning a man she realizes she barely knew. A preternaturally gifted image-maker, Costa films these formative incidents in Vitalina’s life with characteristic sensitivity, evoking all of the agony and beauty to be found in her perseverance through grief. In Cape Verdean Creole and Portuguese with English subtitles.

Virtual Screening Details:
Watch now via the Gene Siskel Film Center and Grasshopper Film


Directors: Kleber Mendonça Filho, Juliano Dornelles
Winner – Jury Prize – 2019 Cannes Film Festival
“A gloriously demented (and lightly psychedelic) Western.” – IndieWire

A few years from now… Bacurau, a small village in the Brazilian sertão, mourns the loss of its matriarch, Carmelita, who lived to be 94. Days later, its inhabitants (among them Sônia Braga) notice that their village has literally vanished from online maps and a UFO-shaped drone is seen flying overhead. There are forces that want to expel them from their homes, and soon, in a genre-bending twist, a band of armed mercenaries led by Udo Kier arrive in town picking off the inhabitants one by one. A fierce confrontation takes place when the townspeople turn the tables on the villainous outsiders, banding together by any means necessary to protect and maintain their remote community. The mercenaries just may have met their match in the fed-up, resourceful denizens of little Bacurau.

Virtual Screening Details:
Watch now via the Music Box Theatre and Kino Lorber


Director: Alex Thompson
“Both a beautifully specific character study and something that has resonance beyond the demographic of its cast.” – Brian Tallerico,

Flailing thirty-four-year-old Bridget (Kelly O’Sullivan) finally catches a break when she meets a nice guy and lands a much-needed job nannying six-year-old Frances (played by a scene-stealing Ramona Edith-Williams). But an unwanted pregnancy introduces an unexpected complication. To make matters worse, she clashes with the obstinate Frances and struggles to navigate a growing tension between Frances’s moms. Amidst her tempestuous personal relationships, a reluctant friendship with Frances emerges, and Bridget contends with the inevitable joys and shit-shows of becoming a part of someone else’s family.

Virtual Screening Details:
Watch now via the Music Box Theatre and Oscilloscope

Share this page: