The Chicago French Film Festival returns this summer. Now in its third year, the Music Box Theatre expands to an entire week (July 26 – August 1) with special guests and film presentations of contemporary French cinema. Among this year’s selections are The Dandelions, a bittersweet family drama directed by Carine Tardieu, and 11.6, a heist film based on a true story, directed by Philippe Godeau and starring François Cluzet.
In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Élysée Treaty, the Chicago French Film Festival teams with the Goethe Institut for a special screening of the 1987 classic Wings of Desire directed by Wim Wenders and starring French actress Solveig Dommartin.
From August 9 to August 15, Music Box will also be screening Alfred Hitchcock’s silent films. Jointly presented by the BFI, Park Circus/ITV and Rialto Pictures, Hitchcock 9 celebrates the restoration of Hitchcock’s nine surviving silent films. On opening weekend, Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra presents newly-composed scores for select titles.
Following the festival, Hitchcock star Tippi Hedron will appear in person at Music Box on Sunday, August 18, for a special screening of Marnie at 2 p.m. Hedron will share behind-the-scenes stories about the 1964 suspense film she starred in with Sean Connery. There will also be a special preshow VIP event including photos, autographs and discussion with Hedren for a select 100 ticket purchasers. For more information, visit www.musicboxtheatre.com.
Also in August, Music Box hosts Noir City: Chicago 5 from Friday, August 23 to Thursday August 29. Presented by the Film Noir Foundation, the event combines rarely-seen and recognized noir classics in 35mm. This year includes films not available on DVD: Try and Get Me! (1950), Repeat Performance (1947) and High Tide (1948).
The Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago is pleased to host A Summer Soirée with Gwyneth Paltrow at The Ritz-Carlton Chicago, 160 E. Pearson St., on June 15. Highlighting the intimate evening will be a conversation with the Academy Award winning actress. Call 312-846-2072 for tickets, tables or more information.
In Evanston, Northwestern University presents a mini Elvis Presley Film Festival with Viva Las Vegas at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, July 23 and King Creole at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 30, at the Ethel M. Barber Theater. For details, visit www.tic.northwestern.edu/summerstage.