Weekend focus: Chicago

It’s Air and Water Show weekend

8_14_2008Chicagoist_airshowI can hear the airplane acrobats flying very very close to my roof.  If you come to the lakefront for the show, take public transportation.  Traffic will be bad before and horrible after the show each day. And parking is impossible in that neighborhood. Trust me.  It’s my neighborhood and I know.

Photo by Runaway Wind from thechicagoist.com.  For five reasons to go even without the  Blue Angels, see DNAinfo.com


The Act of Killing. This is a new documentary about the genocide in Indonesia in the late 1960s. It’s not your standard-issue genocide doc.  No blood.  But it’s a very surreal, gripping film — I’ll write more about it later.  It’s showing at the Music Box for a few days.  This film will generate lots of buzz, heated conversation, and certain award nominations

Twenty Feet from Stardom. This great music doc about female backup singers is showing at Landmark Century Centre for at least another week.  I wrote about it recently.  It’s a grand, joyful story about these terrific performers whose voices made all the difference for many big-name musicians. But they never really got the credit or success they deserved.  This film showcases their personalities and their voices.

Picasso Baby. Another plug for this intriguing performance video by Jay Z.  It will only take 12 minutes of your time to find it and view it.  And it will make you think about performance art and celebrity.


Invasion is showing at Silk Road Rising in the Methodist Temple building on Washington and Clark.  It’s an imperfect but thought-provoking play about Arab-American identity and assimilation.


Don’t miss the Peter Maass article on Edward Snowden and how documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras “helped Snowden spill his secrets.” As she went about her work, she was subjected to incredible surveillance by the US government. The article is in tomorrow’s New York Times Magazine and has been available online for several days.  It’s an excellent article with examples of how journalists are pressured by their own governments. Poitras has been working with Glenn Greenwald, who broke the Snowden story in The Guardian.

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