Conoce a Chicago: International Summer Screenings Program
Chicagoans are lucky to live en una ciudad full of multicultural opportunities. It has a little bit of everything, from festivals to showcases, film screening to galleries, and por supuesto, a plethora of delicious ethnic restaurants. So in the spirit of diversity, PACO has decided to “Conoce a Chicago” every month and explore all the opportunities that such a wonderful city has to offer. The best part is that the majority of the events that we are attending are FREE; yes, GRATIS. See, you can still get a great deal in the city.
Our first “Conoce a Chicago” adventure was all about el cine. We went to the International Summer Screenings Program because it is considered one of the best free film festivals in Chicago. Naturally, we had to check it out.
PACO chose to attend the premier showing of “Héroes,” a movie that was originally released in 2010 and takes place in Cataluña, Spain. “Héroes” is a charming, albeit heartbreaking, coming-of-age story, reminiscent of the American classics My Girl and Sandlot. Told in a series of flashbacks, it is the story of a group of young friends as they get ready for a go-kart race during their summer break. Although this film´s last showing was Saturday, June 16, we have to believe that the rest of the film series will be of a similar caliber.
This 9th annual program began on April 11 and runs through September 29 this year. Through a partnership between Cinema/Chicago and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, the program was able to bring 22 films to the city este año. Every Wednesday a different film debuts at 6:30 p.m., most with encore showings the following Saturday at 2 p.m. Most films are filmed in idiomas nativos, but have English subtitles – so no need to worry if you do not speak a second language!
The International Summer Screening Program shows films at the Chicago Cultural Center’s Claudia Cassidy Theater, 78 E. Washington Street, on the 2nd floor. The doors open 45 minutes before the film, but it is suggested that you get there early porque es muy popular and admission is not guaranteed. We arrived around 5:30 and the line wasn’t too long, but by 6:10 the theatre was pretty much packed. Our suggestion would be to get there early so that you can see how long the line is and take advantage of exploring the galleries at the Cultural Center as there are quite a few interesting art exhibits currently on display.
The next film is a Swedish comedy, “Der Sandmand (The Sandman).” This movie is about a man who seems to be mysteriously leaking sand, which may or may not have to do with the continuous singing of his downstairs neighbor. Let us know if you’re going!