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Chicago Latino Film Festival 

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The 20th annual Chicago Latino Film Festival, presented by the International Latino Cultural Center of Chicago, continues Friday through Thursday, April 23 through 29. Film and video screenings will be at the Biograph; Chicago State Univ., 9501 S. King Dr.; Dominican Univ., 7900 W. Division, River Forest; Facets Cinema-theque; Morton College, 3801 S. Central, Cicero; North Park Univ., 3225 W. Foster; Pulaski Park, 1419 W. Blackhawk; Richard J. Daley College, 7500 S. Pulaski; 3 Penny; and Univ. of Illinois at Chicago Lecture Center B2, 803 S. Morgan. Additional screenings in Aurora can be found at www.latinoculturalcenter.org/Filmfest/Locations/Partners.htm. Unless otherwise noted, all films are in Spanish with subtitles. Tickets are $10; $9 for students, senior citizens, and disabled persons; $8 for members of ILCC and the Illinois Arts Alliance. Festival passes, good for ten screenings, not including special events, are $80, $70 for ILCC members. For more information call 312-409-1757. Films marked with an asterisk (*) are highly recommended.

FRIDAY, APRIL 23

Bought & Sold

Modestly scaled, well produced, and often persuasively acted, Michael Tolajian's 2003 working-class drama makes the most of its Bayonne, New Jersey, setting for this tale of cherished dreams and hard knocks. Ray (Rafael Sardina), a young Puerto Rican shoe salesman, yearns to become a DJ but can't afford the turntables at a local resale shop. The owner, Kutty (David Margulies), a broken man haunted by memories of the Armenian genocide, is himself in hock to the neighborhood crime boss (Joe Grifasi), who likes Ray's enterprise and hires him as the pawnbroker's "cash flow supervisor." Romantic entanglements are among the more cliched elements of the script, which nicely captures the rhythms of quiet, small-town lives but taxes credibility in several key scenes. In English. 91 min. (Andrea Gronvall) Admission is free. (Morton College, 11:30 am)

Finally, the Sea

At a time when the new Argentinean cinema seems to be going through an unusually exciting and fertile period, the festival continues to select the most banal and conventional stuff imaginable from that country. This lachrymose and poorly acted Argentinean-Cuban coproduction (2003), about a Wall Street hotshot traveling to Havana to investigate his emigre roots, is distinctive only for its utter lack of distinction. Jorge Dyszel directed. In English and subtitled Spanish. 95 min. (JR) Admission is free. (Univ. of Illinois at Chicago, noon)

Bought & Sold

See listing this date above. Admission is free. (Morton College, 1:30)

Fruit of Labor

A pushcart vendor pursues the American dream on the streets of Oakland, California, in this 2003 documentary by Pepe Urquijo. 62 min. Admission is free. (Pulaski Park, 6:00)

* Heaven

This 2003 documentary by Romanian filmmaker Alina Teodorescu picks up where Buena Vista Social Club left off, showcasing a group of young Cuban musicians, called Madera Limpia, who are the spiritual descendants of the earlier film's elder statesmen. Teodorescu opens on a beach as several players drum on tree limbs and plastic containers, and the hypnotically percussive music that follows, much of it produced by worn drum kits and tarnished trumpets, is a heady blend of rap, changui, samba, and son. The film captures the rhythms of daily life among the district's proud but impoverished inhabitants, though any documentary about urban Cuba is worth a look just for the music and the splendidly preserved American cars from the 50s that prowl the streets like so many dinosaurs. 96 min. (Joshua Katzman) Admission is free. (Chicago State Univ., 6:00)

A Serious Killer

Jesus Ochoa plays a police detective hunting a serial murderer who knocks off beautiful women by giving them killer orgasms in this 2003 comedy directed by Antonio Urrutia. 86 min. Ochoa and Urrutia will attend the screening, part of the festival's "Noche Mexicana." Tickets are $65, $50 for ILCC members. (Biograph, 6:00)

Breaking Up

In the opening scene of this very talky 2002 comedy, a group of Brazilian intellectuals discuss Elisabeth Kubler-Ross's famed stages of dying (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance), which the screenplay then applies to the breakup of a relationship. Cabral, the husband, justifies his desire to take a "time-out" from his marriage with some philosophical sleight of hand; his wife at first resists, then agrees when sparks fly between her and another man. The couple spend the rest of the movie intellectualizing their angst like Brazilian versions of Woody Allen characters. Domingos de Oliveira's lively direction nearly compensates for none of the characters being particularly appealing. In Portuguese with subtitles. 116 min. (Hank Sartin) (Biograph, 6:30)

* Lovesick Dust

A top-notch script makes this steamy 2003 melodrama a guilty pleasure even as it explores the psychodynamics of religious ecstasy and the moral limitations of faith. A voluptuous young bride, who's given up convent life under protest to marry her much older godfather, the mayor of a Peruvian fishing village, remains a pious virgin, much to the consternation of her besotted husband and his equally smitten son. The town's new priest, a virile freethinker and political activist, joins the community's fight against corporate predators but can't evade the snares of lust. Although it tackles some of the same themes as Carlos Carrera's El crimen del Padre Amaro, in place of cynicism and church bashing Luis Barrios's film offers insight and nuance. The sex is hotter too. 106 min. (Andrea Gronvall) (3 Penny, 7:00)

Where the Poles Meet

A brother and sister living in Paris watch their father's video testament detailing his participation in key historical events in a number of South American countries. Juan Martin Cueva directed this 2002 drama. 54 min. (Facets Cinematheque, 7:00)

Seawards Journey

The lure of the sea unites a crew of colorful eccentrics in this gently comedic road movie (2003) from Uruguay. A stranger turns up in the sleepy burg of Minas and immediately finds himself an object of curiosity to a surly grave digger, a slightly dim street sweeper, and an aged lottery ticket vendor; they in turn prove so entertaining to him that he impulsively tags along when they embark on a trip with a trucker and the town drunk. As the six men wend their way through the spectacular countryside, they swap tales, test each other, and bond. Amid the exquisite landscapes and simple pleasures a certain melancholy pervades, best summed up by the truck driver, who observes, "All the driver sees is what's ahead, but the real journey is what's behind you." Guillermo Casanova directed, ably. 80 min. (Andrea Gronvall) (Biograph, 7:00)

Remembrance

A 2003 documentary about Luis Frank, a Lithuanian immigrant to Mexico and an American spy. Marcela Arteaga directed. Admission is free. (Pulaski Park, 7:15)

Love in Concrete

An obsessively romantic cabdriver picks up a wide cross section of humanity while making his rounds in Caracas, including a tough but sentimental transvestite prostitute and a wealthy doctor in flight from a soured marriage. These passengers continually cross paths, which amounts to a series of extraordinary coincidences in a city that size, but the creaky roundelay structure of this 2003 Venezuelan video is rescued by its charming cast and sweetly humanist intentions. The action keeps returning to the cabbie, whose own story finally takes over; after 20 years pining for a cabaret singer, he finally works up the nerve to court her, with pleasantly goofy results. Franco de Pena directed. 102 min. (Joshua Katzman) (Biograph, 9:00)

* Man by the Shore

This engrossing 1993 Haitian drama by world-class filmmaker Raoul Peck (Lumumba) treats a subject he knows firsthand: the terrors of life under dictator "Papa Doc" Duvalier in the 1960s. Told in flashbacks, it centers on a girl (Jennifer Zubar) forced into hiding with her two older sisters in their grandmother's attic after their dissident parents have fled the country. The grandmother (Toto Bissainte) tries to buy their passage out of Port-au-Prince and otherwise subvert the thuggish Tontons Macoutes, which draws the authorities' attention; as the brutal militia commander, Jean-Michel Martial is as mesmerizing as a cobra. Armando Marco's agile camera serves the movie's themes--that childhood memories, like official histories, are incomplete, and that evil times demand action as well as vigilance. In French with subtitles. 103 min. (Andrea Gronvall) (Facets Cinematheque, 9:00)

Testamento

This 2003 video documentary charts the 60-year career of Alfonso Bauer Paiz, a leader of the October 1944 revolution that overthrew the brutal dictatorship of General Jorge Ubico in Guatemala. Paiz was the architect of a revamped labor organization that stressed national interests, which earned him the enmity of the United Fruit Company, and the U.S.-backed coup of 1953 forced him and his family to flee to Mexico, Nicaragua, and Cuba before he finally returned to his homeland 40 years later. German filmmakers Uli Stelzner and Thomas Walther combine a bounty of archival film with reminiscences from Paiz, cohorts, and surviving family members to recount both a half century of Central American history and a harrowing personal story--Paiz has outlived four of his children. 95 min. (Joshua Katzman) (3 Penny, 9:00)

* About the Living

After a young Mexican girl is killed by a car, her brother, mother, and father each cope with her death differently, but 11 years later all three are still haunted by the tragedy: the brother has become fascinated with the notion of death by drowning, the mother is obsessed with her job hosting a tabloid talk show, and the disconsolate father wanders the city, filming girls he imagines could be his daughter. With sleek monochromatic visuals and a dense, haunting score, this astute 2001 psychological drama by Jorge Aguilera shows how grief and denial have irrevocably alienated the survivors from each other, creating another kind of death. 80 min. (Joshua Katzman) (Biograph, 9:15)

Hurricanes

Enrique Colina directed this 2003 comedy about a telephone worker in Havana whose life is complicated by a cranky boss, a surfeit of girlfriends, and a hurricane that destroys his house. 119 min. (Biograph, 9:30)

Sieged

After the owner of a failing chair factory is robbed, his unpaid workers take over the premises and threaten a strike. Acting as a go-between, the owner's son tries to negotiate a settlement. Writer-director Alejandro Malowicki's ideas and dramaturgy are utterly conventional, but this 2003 feature is reasonably well acted and competently developed. 96 min. (JR) (Biograph, 11:00)

Que Sera, Sera

After a brief fling with a street poet, a Brazilian VJ is robbed and beaten. Mistakenly thinking her lover set her up, she reports him to the police. Murilo Salles directed this 2003 crime drama. 90 min. (Biograph, 11:00)

SATURDAY, APRIL 24

Invisible Evidence

A left-wing reporter from the U.S. arrives in Guatemala to find that his local contact has gone missing under sinister circumstances, and while investigating the disappearance he falls in love with the missing man's sister, who may know more than she's letting on. This inept video (2003) is framed as a political thriller, but the story is effectively depoliticized by the characters' endless conversations about the meaning of life, the nature of truth, and the eternal struggle between good and evil. Alejandro Castillo Close directed. In English and subtitled Spanish. 102 min. (Cliff Doerksen) Admission is free. (Richard J. Daley College, 1:00)

Hurricanes

See listing for Friday, April 23. (3 Penny, 4:00)

Lefty

When a talented young marble player squares off against a strange challenger, the people of his hometown in Mexico rally around him. Carlos Salces directed this 2003 fantasy. 106 min. (Biograph, 4:00)

Student segment

Admission is free. (Facets Cinematheque, 4:00)

The King of the Farm

A fairly engaging children's film that mixes live action with computer and conventional animation. On a distant asteroid a young hero steals a powerful sphere from an evil tyrant and his robot henchman. He ends up stranded on earth disguised, due to his misinterpretation of intercepted TV signals, as an animated chicken from a cartoon show. The sphere falls into the hands of some kids at a summer camp, with shambolic results. The gentle humor focuses on the stupidity of grown-ups and the joy of food fights. Adults may find this a bit wearing, but young kids will like it. 84 min. (Hank Sartin) (Biograph, 4:30)

Thunder in Guyana

New York historian Suzanne Wasserman makes her directing debut with this admiring video documentary about her cousin, Janet Rosenberg-Jagan, who was elected president of Guyana in 1997. Born in Chicago in 1920 and radicalized in college, Rosenberg scandalized her parents by marrying an East Indian and moving to British Guiana, where she and her husband, Chedi Jagan, led the national struggle for independence. It's an amazing political love story, with dishy commentary from family members about the couple's mixed-race marriage and documentation of the CIA campaign against Chedi's prime ministry in the 50s and 60s. But Wasserman's frame of reference is too narrow to permit a serious history of her cousin's politics--Rosenberg-Jagan's 20-month presidency, which was marked by an economic downturn and fierce resistance from the rival Afro-Guyanese party, is covered in a single sentence. 50 min. (JJ) (Facets Cinematheque, 5:00)

The Basque Game: Skin Against Stone

Julio Medem (Sex and Lucia) directed this 2003 documentary about the Basque separatist movement. 115 min. (Biograph, 6:00)

Stray Bullet

A short film by Victor Lopes. (Biograph, 6:00)

Student segment

Admission is free. (Facets Cinematheque, 6:00)

The Little Polish

A 13-year-old street kid literally sings for his supper, imitating a famous tango singer on the trains running through Buenos Aires's famed Central Station. He dreams of better things for himself and the prostitute he loves, but you know from the first frame that he is doomed. Juan Carlos Desanzo's 2003 drama is purportedly based on a true story, but it's the ghosts of other films about kids living on the margins (Pixote, Central Station) that seem to hover in the background. In sum: solid but thoroughly familiar. 93 min. (Hank Sartin) (3 Penny, 6:30)

The Nominee

Gabriel Lopez and Nacho Argiro directed this 2003 Chilean satire of reality TV set in the near future. 100 min. (Biograph, 6:30)

Plan Colombia: Cashing In on the Drug War Failure

Gerard Ungerman and Audrey Brohy's advocacy video makes a compelling case against American antidrug and military aid programs in Colombia. Tight montages of talking heads argue that 20 years of aerial spraying of coca crops has failed to curtail cocaine production while causing unconscionable ecological and human damage (a farmer recounts how his banana and yuca crops were also sprayed). The video further suggests that "Plan Colombia"--which entailed billions of dollars in aid to the Colombian military--was actually intended as an intervention in Colombia's civil war: since 9/11 the aid package has been defined as a measure against "terrorism" in the form of leftist guerrilla forces, which may have been our real target all along. 56 min. (FC) Admission is free. (Richard J. Daley College, 7:00)

Study for a Paraguayan Siesta

Lia Danzker directed this 2003 drama, filmed in Buenos Aires with a nonprofessional cast. 87 min. (Facets Cinematheque, 7:00)

Once Upon a Time in the Hood

Juan Frausto directed this cautionary tale about gang life set on the west side of Chicago. In English. 94 min. (Biograph, 8:15)

Eva Peron: The True Story

Without singing even once, Esther Goris blows Madonna away as Eva Peron. Goris is riveting in this 1996 drama about the Argentinean politician whose acting career and affairs--central to Evita--are touched on only briefly; the focus is on her political goals and impact during the last years of her life. This slow-paced movie may appear dry and morbid compared to the musical version, but it's an effective character study with plenty of subtext: it's fascinating to watch Goris and Victor Laplace (as Juan Peron) demystify sensationalized figures. In Evita little Eva crashes her father's funeral; in Eva Peron she's allowed in--though when she recounts the story as an adult she says only that she was barred from the chapel because she was illegitimate. Eva Peron enables you to marvel at a character who's potent enough to command authority in a pink dress and frilly hat and passionate enough to evince fervor when bedridden; you're compelled to ponder her complex motivations throughout. Juan Carlos Desanzo directs a screenplay by Jose Pablo Feinmann. 119 min. (LA) (3 Penny, 8:30)

Love Hurts

A big winner at Mexico's MTV Awards, this 2002 feature by Fernando Sarinana confidently updates Romeo and Juliet with a catchy pop sound track and a wide array of visual effects. Its star-crossed lovers are a match made not in heaven but at the mall, where Ulises (Luis Fernando Pena), a skateboarding tagger and comic-book artist from a poor but decent family, first spots Renata (Martha Higareda), a privileged but idealistic student who's chauffeured everywhere. The mall serves as an incubator for their growing passion, but once they hit the mean streets they fall victim to all manner of social ills. Some of the camera moves are labored, and the shifts in image resolution and film stock often seem self-conscious. But the split-screen panels and other effects work well, and the key performers are attractive and true. 105 min. (Andrea Gronvall) (Biograph, 8:45)

Durval Records

The freewheeling, rock-driven opening credits are in stark tonal contrast to the rest of this downbeat 2002 black comedy from Brazil about a fortysomething Sao Paulo music seller resisting the seismic shift from vinyl to digital, circa 1995. It's not just his preference for golden oldies that leaves Durval (Ary Franca) stuck in the past and a dead-end business; he's also a quintessential mama's boy, which makes him the perfect mark for a fetching new maid. Enter a charming but willful moppet, and what initially felt like a domestic sitcom morphs into a bleak absurdist parable on the dangers of passivity and denial. Anna Muylaert coscripted and directs. In Portuguese with subtitles. 96 min. (Andrea Gronvall) (Biograph, 9:00)

* Man by the Shore

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Facets Cinematheque, 9:00)

Invisible Evidence

See listing for this date above. (Biograph, 10:30)

Alex Lora, Rock 'n' Roll Slave

El Tri was one of the first Mexican rock bands to write songs in Spanish, and its lyrics identify strongly with the working class, but you'd never guess either from this adoring concert film. Director Luis Kelly provides no history or perspective as he follows the veteran musicians on tours of South America and the U.S., just fart jokes and endless hard-rock performances. The overwhelming focus is on lead singer Alex Lora, who plays a bass custom-built in the shape of a hand, its neck an extended middle finger that shoots white liquid on the audience; returning the compliment, thousands of screaming fans lovingly address him as "Asshole." 120 min. (Peter Margasak) (Biograph, 11:00)

The Frontier

Exiled to a patch of coastal wilderness by the Chilean military government, a teacher finds love and confronts a tidal wave. Ricardo Larrain directed this 1991 drama. 115 min. (Biograph, 11:00)

Red Passport

Paroled early thanks to Mafia connections, a convicted counterfeiter hits the streets of New York City; he hopes to reclaim an engraved plate for $100 bills so he can repay his mob benefactors with funny money and go home to the Dominican Republic, but his double-crossing ex-partners won't tell him where it is. Albert Xavier's 2003 crime drama strives to be gritty, but it has a holding pattern for a plot and the tough-guy dialogue bears the awkward, repetitive stamp of amateur improvisation. The editing is pretty good for such a modestly budgeted film. In English and subtitled Spanish. 93 min. (Cliff Doerksen) (3 Penny, 11:00)

SUNDAY, APRIL 25

Fruit of Labor

See listing for Friday, April 23. Admission is free. (North Park Univ., 3:30)

Profit and Nothing But!

Raoul Peck's 2001 video essay argues that capitalism is "spinning out of control." To make his case Peck intercuts footage of his native Haiti with strangely depopulated views of New York and Paris, but striking imagery is no substitute for analysis, and the theoretical segments, comprising interviews with European leftists and an intrusive narration, are lifelessly didactic. Aside from some details about the small profits to be earned in a Haitian market, Peck has no use for facts; the paucity of information he provides about its people, history, and culture ultimately fulfill Peck's weird declaration that Haiti "doesn't exist." In English and subtitled French and Haitian Creole. 57 min. (FC) (Facets Cinematheque, 4:00)

Student segment

Admission is free. (Facets Cinematheque, 4:00)

ANC Hip Hop Revolution

Over the last decade hip-hop has gained major currency in Cuba, where an increasing number of artists have used it to explore racial tension and inequality. Directed by Melina Fotiadi, this talky 2003 video documentary focuses on a popular duo called Anonimo Consejo ("anonymous advice"), or ANC. Fotiadi does nothing to explain how widespread the music's influence is or how it rose from an underground phenomenon to a state-approved style with its own official festival. But she does show how unglamorous it is: rehearsing for a big show, the two talented MCs rap over a cheap stereo, speaking into a TV remote as if it were a microphone. 70 min. (Peter Margasak) (Biograph, 4:30)

Hurricanes

See listing for Friday, April 23. (3 Penny, 4:30)

* Life Leaves Stains

A handsome young truck driver connives to hide his gambling from his wife, an unemployment counselor to a clientele whose misfortunes only remind her of her own. The gambler's long-lost half brother sends them a lavish gift, then shows up at their door. At first the suave older man seems like a bearer of good fortune for the couple, whose financial and marital woes begin to ebb. But a dark secret in the visitor's past soon resurfaces to haunt him. Enrique Urbizu directed this 2003 Spanish melodrama with subtlety and assurance. (Andrea Gronvall) (Biograph, 5:00)

The Prince

This 2003 Brazilian feature brims with sparkling comic moments, though a disconsolate pall hangs over it. After living in Paris for 20 years, an intellectual returns to his hometown of Sao Paulo and finds that most of his old friends have forsaken the political activism of their youth and settled into bourgeois complacency. Director Ugo Giorgetti creates a menagerie of eccentrics, among them the protagonist's nephew, a brilliant teacher institutionalized for espousing a radically rewritten history of Brazil, and the wheelchair-bound Renato, an alternately ebullient and dyspeptic alcoholic who personifies most poignantly his generation's misplaced hopes. In Portuguese with subtitles. 102 min. (Joshua Katzman) (Biograph, 5:00)

Student segment

Admission is free. (Facets Cinematheque, 6:00)

Lefty

See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Biograph, 6:30)

Around Flamenco

This three-part Spanish documentary by Paco Millan explores the international reach of flamenco culture, showing its roots in Gypsy Spain and raising questions about globalism and authenticity as dancers and musicians in New York and Tokyo emulate and adapt the form for their own purposes. Is flamenco a style easily translated, or an inherently Spanish phenomenon that loses power and depth when practiced by non-Spaniards? Millan's answer is sluggishly delivered, but he seems to believe the former. In English and subtitled Spanish and Japanese. 93 min. (Peter Margasak) (Facets Cinematheque, 7:00)

The Gaze

A photographer in Havana becomes obsessed with a female subject, but his interest is unrequited. Enrique Alvarez directed this 2001 drama. 93 min. (Biograph, 7:00)

Que Sera, Sera

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Biograph, 7:00)

Testamento

See listing for Friday, April 23. (3 Penny, 7:00)

Julia, toda en mi...

Puerto Rican poet Julia de Burgos enjoyed a brilliant career in the 1930s and '40s but died broke and forgotten in New York in 1953. This worshipful 2003 portrait by Ivonne Belen draws on the poet's letters and her family's testimony to tell the story of Burgos's unhappy life, illustrating it with archival footage and dramatic reenactments. Heartfelt and handsomely made, with recitations of her work by prominent actors, writers, and artists, this should please Burgos's admirers, but the uninitiated will have a hard time understanding her place in Latin letters, and her left-wing politics get less attention than the tortured romantic life that inspired much of her verse. 100 min. (Cliff Doerksen) (Biograph, 9:00)

Police Woman

A grieving young widow (Amelia Coroa) discovers that her eight-year-old son (Ludovic Videira) has joined a gang of young thieves. Rather than lose him to reform school, she flees their backwater town with him and another child in tow. What seems at first a bucolic journey through the countryside becomes an inescapable nightmare, and the final act unfolds almost exclusively after dark, reflecting writer-director Joaquim Sapinho's sense of human depravity. The resolution is heartbreakingly tragic, though the modest narrative ultimately buckles under its own existential weight. In Portuguese with subtitles. 84 min. (Joshua Katzman) (3 Penny, 9:00)

Remembrance

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Facets Cinematheque, 9:00)

Bride to Be

A 1993 drama about two Jewish girls coming of age in Mexico in the 60s. Guita Schyfter directed. 115 min. (Biograph, 9:30)

Love in Concrete

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Biograph, 9:30)

MONDAY, APRIL 26

ANC Hip Hop Revolution

See listing for Sunday, April 25. Admission is free. (Univ. of Illinois at Chicago, noon)

Invisible Evidence

See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Biograph, 6:30)

Cuba Libre

A Cuban boy takes solace from Hollywood movies after his father is forced into exile by the burgeoning revolution. Juan Gerard directed this 2003 drama; Harvey Keitel costars. In English. 110 min. (Biograph, 7:00)

Finally, the Sea

See listing for Friday, April 23. Admission is free. (Biograph, 7:00)

Plan Colombia: Cashing In on the Drug War Failure See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Facets Cinematheque, 7:00)

Santo Domingo Blues

This lively, low-budget video documentary explores the roots and rise of bachata, a rustic guitar-driven dance music that now rivals merengue as the most popular musical export from the Dominican Republic. Shooting there and in New York, director Alex Wolfe traces the style's development from rural working-class blues to sophisticated, sexually charged party music. The technically uneven performance footage is redeemed by excellent sound and charismatic interviews with popular bachateros like Raulin Rodriguez, Teodoro Reyes, and de facto narrator Luis Vargas, whose rags-to-riches career symbolizes the form's ascent to legitimacy. In English and subtitled Spanish. 74 min. (Peter Margasak) (3 Penny, 7:00)

Plan Colombia: Cashing In on the Drug War Failure

See listing for Saturday April 24. Admission is free. (North Park Univ., 7:30)

From the Stockades of San Basilio

Erwin Goggel directed this 2003 documentary about the folkways of Creole-speaking descendants of slaves living in a remote Colombian village. 80 min. (3 Penny, 9:00)

Thunder in Guyana

See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Facets Cinematheque, 9:00)

ANC Hip Hop Revolution

See listing for Sunday, April 25. (Biograph, 9:00)

Seawards Journey

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Biograph, 9:30)

* What the Eye Doesn't See

Critics have likened this sprawling Peruvian political drama (2003) to Paul Thomas Anderson's Magnolia, though Costa-Gavras's 1973 thriller State of Siege would be another apt comparison. With six interlocking stories that cut across social and economic lines, the film defies meaningful summary, but it's set in Lima in 2000, when the Fujimori administration was rocked by the release of secret videotapes documenting endemic government corruption. At first the scandal functions as a fascinating backdrop to the action, but eventually each story intersects with the crisis. Francisco Lombardi's direction is taut, the cinematography excellent, and the cast superb; especially impressive is Gustavo Bueno as a lawyer whose motives for helping the teenage daughter of a political detainee are less than pure. 149 min. (Cliff Doerksen) (Biograph, 9:30)

TUESDAY, APRIL 27

* Heaven

See listing for Friday, April 23. Admission is free. (Univ. of Illinois at Chicago, noon)

Finally, the Sea

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Dominican Univ., 6:30)

Julia, toda en mi...

See listing for Sunday, April 25. (Biograph, 6:30)

La gran fiesta

Marcos Zurinaga directed this 1987 tale of love, betrayal, and espionage, set on the eve of Puerto Rico's transformation into an American commonwealth in 1942. (Biograph, 7:00)

Love Hurts

See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Biograph, 7:00)

Where the Poles Meet

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Facets Cinematheque, 7:00)

Sieged

See listing for Friday, April 23. (3 Penny, 7:00)

Sieged

See listing for Friday, April 23. Admission is free. (North Park Univ., 7:30)

The Gaze

See listing for Sunday, April 25. (3 Penny, 9:00)

A Question of Faith

On the run from the mob, a carver of religious statues and his assistant embark on a trip to deliver a life-size Virgin Mary to a remote mountain village, with the help of a professional gambler. Marcos Loayza directed this 1995 Bolivian drama. (Facets Cinematheque, 9:00)

Once Upon a Time in the Hood

See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Biograph, 9:00)

The Basque Game: Skin Against Stone

See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Biograph, 9:30)

Bride to Be

See listing for Sunday, April 25. (Biograph, 9:30)

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 28

The Nominee

See listing for Saturday, April 24. Admission is free. (Univ. of Illinois at Chicago, noon)

Sex With Love

A grade school teacher organizes a discussion about sex education with the parents of his pupils and the conversation becomes a freewheeling symposium on the varieties and problems of erotic desire. Boris Quercia directed this 2002 Chilean comedy. 103 min. Quercia will attend the screening, which will be followed by a party at Sangria Cafe, 901 W. Weed, 312-266-1200. Tickets are $50, $40 for ILCC members. (Biograph, 6:00)

Finally, the Sea

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Biograph, 6:30)

From the Stockades of San Basilio

See listing for Monday, April 26. (3 Penny, 7:00)

The Prince

See listing for Sunday, April 25. (Biograph, 7:00)

Remembrance

See listing for Friday, April 23. (Facets Cinematheque, 7:00)

* What the Eye Doesn't See

See listing for Monday, April 26. (Biograph, 8:45)

Plan Colombia: Cashing In on the Drug War Failure

See listing for Saturday, April 24. (Facets Cinematheque, 9:00)

Santo Domingo Blues

See listing for Monday, April 26. (3 Penny, 9:00)

Cuba Libre

See listing for Monday, April 26. (Biograph, 9:30)

* Life Leaves Stains

See listing for Sunday, April 25. (Biograph, 9:30)

THURSDAY, APRIL 29

Encore presentation (Biograph, 6:00)

Encore presentation (Biograph, 6:30)

Encore presentation (3 Penny, 7:00)

Encore presentation (Facets Cinematheque, 7:00)

The Girl of Your Dreams

A dark comedy (1998) about the misadventures of a Spanish film crew in Nazi Germany. Fernando Trueba directed. 121 min. (Biograph, 7:00)

Tieta do Agreste

Carlos Diegues directed this 1996 comedy based on a Jorge Amado novel. Sonia Braja stars. 115 min. In Portuguese with subtitles. (Biograph, 9:00)

Encore presentation (Biograph, 9:00)

Encore presentation (Facets Cinematheque, 9:00)

La gran fiesta

See listing for Tuesday, April 27. (3 Penny, 9:00)

Confessing to Laura

A Colombian woman gets her husband to take a birthday cake to her best friend's house; snipers and rioting in the street oblige him to spend the night there. Jaime Osorio Gomez directed this 1990 feature. 90 min. (Biograph, 9:30)

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Michael Koerner: My DNA Catherine Edelman Gallery
November 02
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