Music Box Blog

Frank Zappa, Tickled, Some Like It Hot, French Film Festival, and more!

Newsletter, Tuesday, June 28th, 2016, 5:31pm

Happy Wednesday, Music Boxers

Coming up, another week of Tickled, the new documentary that must be seen to be believed. What begins as a lighthearted look into the online world of “competitive endurance tickling” videos soon gives way to something more sinister, in one of the most intriguing thrillers to hit the big screen in years.

Opening Friday, Eat That Question: Frank Zappa in His Own Words is an intimate encounter with the iconoclastic composer and musician. Rated 91% Fresh on RottenTomatoes, Slash Film calls this documentary “Fiercely intelligent. Brutally honest.”

Also opening Friday, the first-ever U.S. Theatrical release of Belladonna of Sadness, in a new 4K Restoration! One of the great lost masterpieces of Japanese animation, Belladonna of Sadness is a mad, swirling, psychedelic light-show of medieval tarot-card imagery. Only four screenings!

Our Marilyn Monroe Matinee Series begins this weekend with the raucous comedy Some Like It Hot on 35MM. Ranked the Funniest Movie of All Time by the American Film Institute, Jack Lemmon & Tony Curtis are on the run from the mob and resort to desperate measures to save their skin—dressing in drag and joining Marilyn’s all-girl jazz band! “Nobody’s Perfect”, but this movie might be! See it Saturday & Sunday at 11:30am.

This Friday & Saturday at Midnight, Meryl Streep & Goldie Hawn star in Robert Zemeckis’ dark camp comedy Death Becomes Her. Featuring ground-breaking, Oscar-winning special effects, used for the most malicious purposes.

It’s summertime, have you been by to grab a drink in the Music Box Lounge And Garden? Did you know that the Lounge & Garden are available for private events, and we’d love to host your party/reception/summertime get-together/box social/etc? If you’re interested & would like more information, please e-mail Drake@MusicBoxTheatre.com.

Next Wednesday at 7:30pm, join 93XRT & Goose Island Brewing celebrate LCD Soundsystem’s first Chicago show performance in 5 years by showing their pulse-pounding concert film Shut Up and Play the Hits!

Coming up in the next few weeks, check out the schedule for The 2016 Chicago French Film Festival (July 22nd-28th) and our Coen Brothers Retrospective (July 8th-14th), coinciding the new digital restoration of their debut film Blood Simple. And don’t forget to check out our complete July/August 2016 Film Calendar, for more films & events coming to Chicago this summer!

See you at the movies

Shocking documentary Tickled, The Untouchables on 70MM, Twin Peaks at Midnight, & more!

Newsletter, Tuesday, June 21st, 2016, 3:16pm

Happy Wednesday, Music Boxers

Opening on Friday, the controversial documentary Tickled begins with journalist David Farrier investigating a mysterious tickling competition online. However, what starts out as a lighthearted curiosity soon gives way to something much more dark and sinister. Rated 91% Fresh on RottenTomatoes, the Village Voice calls Tickled “A deeply felt crime thriller you have to see to believe.”

Our Brian De Palma Retrospective concludes with a pair of acclaimed crime stories. Tonight, a rare screening of The Untouchables on 70MM, at 7:30pm. Shot in Chicago, with an Oscar-winning performance from Sean Connery, a David Mamet script, an Ennio Morricone score, and a truly scary Robert De Niro, De Palma has never had better support. The retrospective ends on Thursday with Carlito’s Way, De Palma & Al Pacino’s only collaboration after Scarface.

Before the series returns to TV, check out the prequel Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, this Friday & Saturday at 11:30pm. Our 35mm screenings will be introduced by local musician and Music Box projectionist Daniel Knox, presenting clips, interviews, and rare footage before the David Lynch’s film starts at Midnight. The first 70 patrons for each show will receive an official Twin Peaks trading card. Whoever gets the Laura card each night wins a special Twin Peaks-related prize.

Also opening Friday, the tense supernatural South Korean thriller The Wailing. An officer investigates a mysterious disappearance that has caused a small village to descend into violence & hysteria, in a 100% Fresh rated-film that Examiner calls “Riveting, brilliantly written, impeccably acted, and masterfully filmed…. Without a doubt one of the year’s best films.”

Our matinees this weekend include an encore presentation of National Theatre Live’s One Man, Two Guvnors on Saturday at 11:30am, starring a pre-Carpool Karaoke James Corden in a Tony Award-winning performance. On Saturday & Sunday at 11:30am, Fritz Lang’s M, a harrowing masterwork starring Peter Lorre, concludes our Foreign Masterpieces matinee series.

It’s summertime, have you been by to grab a drink in the Music Box Lounge And Garden? Did you know that the Lounge & Garden are available for private events, and we’d love to host your party/reception/summertime get-together/box social/etc? If you’re interested & would like more information, please e-mail Drake@MusicBoxTheatre.com.

Also this week, more screenings of the hilarious & compelling political documentary Weiner, and our new Trivia Night on Mondays in the Music Box Lounge. Finally, you only have a few more chances to see the cinefile-approved documentaries De Palma and Raiders!: The Story of The Greatest Fan Film Ever Made, the last day for both movies is Thursday, June 23rd.

De Palma Restrospective, Raiders! Fan Film, Yojimbo, George Watsky, & more!

Newsletter, Tuesday, June 14th, 2016, 9:25pm

Happy Thursday, Music Boxers

Opening this Friday, the new documentary De Palma looks one of the most talented, influential, and iconoclastic filmmakers of all time, Brian De Palma. Directors Noah Baumbach & Jake Paltrow, and De Palma himself, take you on a tour through the divisive and enduring filmography of this studio rebel. Rated 97% FRESH on RottenTomatoes.com, Variety calls De Palma “A delightful, illuminating career reflection.”

In celebration of De Palma, we’ll also be playing a Brian De Palma Retrospective! Including a 70MM presentation of The Untouchables (Chicago never looked so good!), plus 35MM presentations of the iconic gangster epic Scarface, Hitchcock-homage Dressed To Kill, murder mystery/film love letter Blow Out and much more!

In the 1980s, three 11 year olds friends started a quest to complete a shot-for-shot remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Over two decades later,they succeeded. Opening Friday, the new documentary Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made looks at this personal, epic love letter to a true modern classic. On Sunday afternoon, catch a Double Feature of Raiders and Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation, hosted by filmmaker Chris Strompolos (Indiana Jones himself!)

Our matinees this Saturday & Sunday morning include Akira Kurosawa’s visually stunning & darkly comic samurai tale Yojimbo on 35MM, and an appreciation of the later works of one of France’s greatest impressionist painters in Renoir: Revered and Reviled.

At midnight this weekend, in addition to De Palma cult favorites Phantom of the Paradise and Carrie, you can enter The Room with Tommy Wiseau on Friday and Dr. Frank-N-Furter’s castle in The Rocky Horror Picture Show on Saturday.

Next Thursday, June 23rd, award-winning poet and musician George Watsky visits the Music Box to present his debut essay collection HOW TO RUIN EVERYTHING. Presented by The Book Cellar, the evening features a Q&A and Book Signing.

Also playing this week, the revealing political documentary Weiner, and encore presentations of Iggy Pop: Live in Basel and The Taming of the Shrew, presented by The Stratford Festival. And don’t forgot to put your movie knowledge to the test at Trivial Filmmaker in the Music Box Lounge, Mondays at 8pm!

See you at the movies

Blue Velvet, 3 Ninjas, Cinema Slapdown, SIlent Cinema, and more!

Newsletter, Wednesday, June 8th, 2016, 2:59pm

Happy Thursday, Music Boxers

David Lynch’s provocative thriller Blue Velvet returns to theaters for its 30th Anniversary, starting this Friday at the Music Box. Before Twin Peaks, Lynch looked into the seedy underbelly of suburbia with a film that Gene Siskel called “One powerful, mesmerizing thriller, a masterful exercise in controlling an audience’s attention.” The Music Box will be playing a new DCP Restoration.

Also opening Friday, from the Academy Award Nominated Director of Paradise Now comes The Idol, the incredible true story of an aspiring musician living in Gaza, with a seemingly impossible goal: to compete on the program “Arab Idol.” CLICK HERE to listen to director Hany Bu Assad talk about The Idol on WBEZ’s Worldview.

Now that the Music Box Theatre offers Pipeworks Brewing’s Ninja Vs. Unicorn, we thought we’d make an event of it. On Saturday, join Pipeworks Brewing Co. for a special midnight screening of the cult classic 3 Ninjas! Indulge in some 90’s nostalgia and enjoy FREE TASTINGS starting at 10pm in the Music Box Lounge, before 3 Ninjas kicks it on the big screen at Midnight.

Silent Cinema returns to its Saturday at Noon timeslot this weekend, with a 35MM presentation of the heart-wrenching love story Tol’able David. Featuring a live musical score on the famous Music Box organ. Tickets available now.

Playing all week, the engrossing political documentary Weiner, that takes you further behind the scenes of politics & the media than you ever thought you could go.

Starting this Monday, join us for Trivial Filmmaker in the Music Box Lounge! Put your film nerd knowledge to the test with our new trivia night, and play to win excellent prizes for filmmakers. RSVP for you and your friends today!

On Tuesday, June 14th at 7pm, our NSFC series wraps up with Mike Leigh’s Life is Sweet, hosted by the Chicago Reader’s J.R. Jones. Chosen as best film of 1991, this working-class family dramedy will be presented on 35MM. Tickets available now.

On Wednesday, the Music Box welcomes Columbia College Chicago’s Cinema Slapdown, a wildly entertaining hybrid of film discussion, knockdown, drag out debate and audience interaction. Join Tim Kazurinsky (former SNL writer/performer) and Rachel Mason (performer with Second City Improv Allstars and The Boys) as they argue the merits of Tim Robbins’ award-winning political satire Bob Roberts. Advance tickets available now.

Also this week, from the world-renowned Stratford Festival comes a scintillating production of Shakespeare’s boisterous comedy The Taming of the Shrew on Sunday at 11:30am, and punk godfather Iggy Pop takes the stage in Switzerland in Iggy Pop: Live in Basel next Thursday at 9:45pm.

Finally, on Friday June 17th, we’re celebrating the release of the new documentary De Palma with a Brian De Palma Retrospective! We’ll be playing some of the most iconic films from the revered & influential filmmaker, including a 70MM presentation of The Untouchables, plus gangster epic Scarface, the horror-ific Carrie, Hitchcock-homage Dressed To Kill, and much more! Check out the Full Schedule and get your tickets now.

See you at the movies

Grindhouse Film Festival, Weiner, The Red Shoes, There Will Be Blood, & more!

Newsletter, Tuesday, May 31st, 2016, 11:30pm

Happy Wednesday, Music Boxers

This weekend, the Music Box travels to the outer reaches of cinematic insanity with the Grindhouse Film Festival! Dan Halsted, the “Indiana Jones of film archivists” presents 3 nights of 35MM madness, presenting the best & rarest oddities from the ’70s & ’80s. The fest includes the only known 35mm prints of The Mystery of Chess Boxing & Shaolin vs Wu Tang, the gore-riffic The Gates of Hell and Grindhouse Trailers, with Italian horror, blaxploitation, sexploitation, revenge films, and so much more. Dan’s presentations have sold out theaters all over the country, so don’t wait, get your tickets today!

Also playing, the revealing & scandalous political documentary Weiner, Terence Davies’ sweeping epic Sunset Song, and the shocking thriller Green Room.

On Friday at 6:30pm, the Music Box is proud to host the 11th Annual Premiere Film Festival, the student film festival hosted by DePaul University’s School of Cinematic Arts, showcasing the best of student work in cinema and animation. This event is Free and open to the public.

Our matinee this weekend is The Red Shoes, the glorious Technicolor epic of art, dance and sacrifice, presented on 35MM. At Midnight on Friday & Saturday, Malin Akerman, Thomas Middleditch & Adam DeVine star in the meta-comedy love letter to 80’s slasher flicks The Final Girls.

On Monday, Chicago Humanities Festival presents Silent Shakespeare, with world expert on Shakespeare and silent films Judith Buchanan, Chicago actors and a live accompanist in a presentation featuring rare clips from silent films and lively commentary. And if that doesn’t satiate your appetite for the Bard, you can catch an encore presentation of The Stratford Festival’s production of The Adventures of Pericles on Tuesday night.

On Tuesday, Chicago Tribune film critic Michael Phillips presents Paul Thomas Anderson’s earthshaking fable of greed & success There Will Be Blood. Presented on 35MM, this screening is part of our National Society of Film Critics series. CLICK HERE for advance tickets.

Finally, next Wednesday, 93XRT & Goose Island Brewing join us for the inaugural screening in their “Music In Motion” Film Series, with a special showing of The Talking Heads’ seminal concert film Stop Making Sense. Tickets available now.

See you at the Movies

The Music Box hosts the Grindhouse Film Festival June 3-5!

Newsletter, Friday, May 27th, 2016, 12:05pm

Hey Horror Fans,

Next weekend, climb aboard the exploitation starship as we travel to the outer reaches of cinematic insanity with the Grindhouse Film Festival! Dan Halsted, the “Indiana Jones of film archivists” visits the Music Box for 3 nights of 35MM madness, presenting the best & rarest oddities from the ’70s & ’80s.

On Friday night, Dan will show off his favorite Grindhouse Trailers, with Italian horror, blaxploitation, sexploitation, hicksploitation, revenge films, kung fu obscurities and so much more. On Saturday night, it’s an Old School Kung Fu Double Feature, with the only known 35mm prints of The Mystery of Chess Boxing & Shaolin vs Wu Tang. The festival wraps up on Sunday evening with an Exploitation Double Feature, with the gore-riffic The Gates of Hell & a Secret Screening that will knock your socks off.

Double Features are only $12 ($9 for Music Box Members). That’s two movies you’ll likely never get to see on the big screen again for one low price! Dan’s presentations have sold out theaters all over the country, so don’t wait, get your tickets today!

New documentary WEINER, plus Ingmar Bergman, Jim Jarmusch, REPO MAN, & more!

Newsletter, Tuesday, May 24th, 2016, 8:52pm

Happy Wednesday, Music Boxers

Sexts, lies, and Carlos Danger: watch the wildest political meltdown in recent history as it unfolds. The new documentary Weiner follows the 2013 mayoral campaign of Anthony Weiner, as he attempts to overcome the scandal that rocked his political career two years earlier. Already a box office hit, Indiewire calls it “Mesmerizing. The best documentary about a political campaign ever made.” Opens this Friday at the Music Box.

At Midnight this weekend, Emilio Estevez is a Repo Man, in Alex Cox’s 1980s sci-fi black comedy. You can also catch late night screenings of the dark indie sensation Green Room on Friday & Saturday.

Our Foreign Masterpieces matinee series continues with Ingmar Bergman’s haunting & existential The Seventh Seal on 35MM. This Saturday & Sunday at 11:30am. (Note: Saturday’s screening will be in Theatre 2, Sunday’s will be in Theatre 1). Saturday at Noon, The Stratford Festival presents Shakespeare’s rousing The Adventures of Pericles.

On Tuesday at 7pm, film critic Jonathan Rosenbaum hosts Jim Jarmusch’s breakthrough oddball comedy Stranger Than Paradise, kicking off our National Society of Film Critics series. CLICK HERE for advance tickets.

Also opening on Friday, from director Terence Davies (Distant Voices, Still Lives, The Long Day Closes) comes Sunset Song, the intimate epic of hope, tragedy and a young woman’s endurance against the hardships of rural Scottish life at the dawning of the Great War. Based on the novel by Lewis Grassic Gibbon, RogerEbert.com gives it 4 Stars, calling Sunset Song “One of the great director Terence Davies’ best films.”

Next Wednesday, Sound Opinions at the Movies presents The Harder They Come, the gritty, groundbreaking film that brought reggae music to the international stage. Rock critics Jim DeRogotis and Greg Kot will introduce this one-night-only presentation.

Finally, next weekend, it’s a 35MM extravaganza as we travel to the outer reaches of cinematic insanity with our Grindhouse Film Festival! Hosted by Dan Halsted, head film programmer at the Hollywood Theatre in Portland OR, we’ll be screening some of the most mind-blowing pieces of cinema to ever rip through a film projector, with bizarro trailers, a kung fu double feature, horror, and more! Tickets available now, get yours today!

See you at the movies

The NSFC Celebrates 50 Years with Three Award-Winning Films!

Newsletter, Monday, May 23rd, 2016, 11:32am

This summer, the Music Box Theatre is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of The National Society of Film Critics with three Best Film winners from the NSFC’s long history.

Participating members Michael Phillips (The Chicago Tribune), J.R. Jones (Chicago Reader) and Jonathan Rosenbaum (formerly of Chicago Reader) will each present a personal favorite winner over a three-week series. Each film will be screened on 35mm and followed by a post-film discussion.

On Tuesday, May 31st, Jonathan Rosenbaum will present Jim Jarmusch’s breakthrough Stranger Than Paradise. On Tuesday, June 7th, Michael Phillips will host Paul Thomas Anderson’s There Will Be Blood, in an evening that will also include a 35MM presentation of the Paul Thomas Anderson-directed music video “Daydreaming” by Radiohead. Finally, on Tuesday, June 14th, J.R. Jones will present Mike Leigh’s Life is Sweet.

Tickets for are available now. CLICK HERE to purchase advance tickets.

See you at the movies!

Chicago Critics Film Festival with Craig Robinson, Ti West, Ira Sachs & more!

Newsletter, Tuesday, May 17th, 2016, 9:54pm

Happy Wednesday, Music Boxers

The Chicago Critics Film Festival returns to the Music Box, presenting a full week of Chicago film premieres, curated by the Chicago Film Critics Association. The festival offers a selection of films comprised of recent festival favorites and as-yet-undistributed works from a wide variety of filmmakers. This year’s festival includes 26 Feature Films & 14 Short Films which have not screened in Chicago!

The festival kicks off on Friday with the Sundance Award-winning Morris From America, with star Craig Robinson (The Office) and Writer/Director Chad Hartigan in attendance. Other presentations include Q&As with actors Michael Peña (War on Everyone), Martin Starr (Operator), Adam Pally (Joshy), directors Ira Sachs (Little Men), Ti West (In A Valley of Violence), Anne Hamilton (American Fable), among many others!

Check below for more festival highlights and the Full Schedule. CLICK HERE to purchase a Festival Pass & advance tickets.

We also have daily screenings of the surreal High-Rise starring Tom Hiddleston & Elisabeth Moss and late night screenings of the gripping thriller Green Room starring Patrick Stewart. The anime Harmony, the second part of the Project Itoh trilogy, plays at Midnight on Saturday.

Our Art & Architecture in Cinema series continues with Leonardo Da Vinci: The Genius in Milan, an in-depth look at the “Leonardo 1452- 1519” in EXPO 2105, one of the most decisive exhibitions ever to be held on Leonardo. Saturday & Sunday at 11:30am.

Next Tuesday, catch an encore presentation of the acclaimed production of Hamlet by The Stratford Festival. You may know the story, but you’ve never seen it like this before!

Finally, Noir City: Chicago returns for the 8th great year on August 19th-25th! Our 8th year kicks off with a presentation of Miller’s Crossing, the Coen brothers’ brilliant tribute to 1930s gangster melodramas, featuring a Q&A with actor Jon Polito! This year’s fest also includes a 35MM restoration of Los Tallos Amargos and Edward G. Robinson & Barbara Stanwyck in Flesh And Fantasy, with more titles announced soon! Festival Passes & Opening Night tickets are on sale for Music Box Members this Friday
If you’re not a Member yet, don’t miss out, sign up for a Music Box Membership HERE.

See you at the movies

Save The Date: Noir City Chicago returns August 19th, 2016!

Newsletter, Tuesday, May 17th, 2016, 4:20pm

Hey Noir fans!

Noir City: Chicago returns to the Music Box for the 8th great year, as the Film Noir Foundation presents a festival that combines extraordinary rarities with revivals of recognized classics!

The year kicks off with an Opening Night presentation of Miller’s Crossing, the Coen brothers’ brilliant, atmospheric tribute to 1930s gangster melodramas. Actor Joe Polito will attend for a special Q&A!

Festival Passes & Tickets for Miller’s Crossing will go on sale for Music Box Members starting this Friday, May 20th. Everyone else will have to wait until Monday, May 23rd. Only 125 Festival Passes are available, so don’t delay, grab yours on Friday!

This year’s fest also includes a 35MM restoration of Los Tallos Amargos (The Bitter Stems) on Saturday and Edward G. Robinson & Barbara Stanwyck in Flesh And Fantasy on Sunday.

More films & events will be announced soon, including double features, new restorations, 35MM presentations, and much more!

Sign up for a Music Box Membership HERE: MusicBoxTheatre.com/services/membership

Tom Hiddleston in High-Rise, a Q&A with Norman Lear, Radiohead’s Daydreaming, & more!

Newsletter, Wednesday, May 11th, 2016, 12:29pm

Happy Wednesday, Music Boxers

Opening this Friday, Tom Hiddleston stars in High-Rise, based on the novel by J.G. Ballard, directed by Ben Wheatley (Sightseers). Come out this weekend and enter to win a Poster signed by Wheatley, Hiddleston, Luke Evans, & Sienna Miller. Also, our 35MM print of Radiohead’s Daydreaming will play before the Friday & Saturday 7pm shows!

On Monday, May 16th, TV legend Norman Lear (All In The Family, The Jeffersons) visits us for the new documentary Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You. Mr. Lear and Directors Heidi Ewing & Rachel Grady will host a Q&A after the screening.

We also have daily screenings of the the indie comedy The Family Fang starring Jason Bateman & Nicole Kidman, and the taut thriller Green Room, starring Patrick Stewart.

Our Foreign Masterpieces matinee series kicks off this weekend with Federico Fellini’s Oscar-winning 8 1/2, a fantastical look at the creative process through the eyes of a harried filmmaker. Presented on 35MM.

Our Midnight films this weekend include Tommy Wiseau’s The Room on Friday (Don’t forget your spoons!) and The Rocky Horror Picture Show on Saturday, featuring the Midnight Madness shadowcast.

On Wednesday, May 18th, Silent Cinema presents F.W. Murnau’s dramatic romance Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans, one of the most acclaimed silent films of all time. This screening will be accompanied by a live musical score on the famous Music Box organ by Dennis Scott, Music Box House Organist.

Also this week, a Free Friday the 13th screening of The Conjuring, a special filmed presentation of The Stratford Festival: Hamlet on Saturday, and Harmony, the second part of the anime Project Itoh Trilogy, on Tuesday.

Finally, next week is the Chicago Critics Film Festival! This year’s lineup includes over a dozen Chicago premieres of new films, and special guests including Craig Robinson, Ti West, Michael Pena, and more! Check out the Full Schedule and get your tickets now for the films that everyone will be talking about this year!

See you at the movies

The Stratford Festival is onscreen at the Music Box!

Newsletter, Monday, May 9th, 2016, 2:57pm

Hey Theater lovers,

The Stratford Festival has been setting the standard for classical theatre in North America for more than 60 years. Since the revolutionary first season, more than 26 million theatregoers from around the world have visited the Stratford Festival. Now the Music Box is pleased to present three exciting Shakespeare plays by the acclaimed repertory theatre on the big screen, captured live in September 2015. The plays are filmed using 10 cameras and 128 tracks of sound to create a sensational high-definition, surround-sound experience remaining faithful to the stage version of the production.

The first three Stratford Festival presentations include new interpretations of Hamlet, The Adventures of Pericles, and The Taming of the Shrew. Full schedule and show details below.

We’ll also be featuring an encore presentation of National Theatre Live’s One Man, Two Guvnors, the West End hit that made its way to Broadway. Starring The Late Late Show’s James Corden in a Tony Award-winning role!

See you at the movies

Jason Bateman in The Family Fang, Mother’s Day with Mamma Mia, Mad Max & more!

Newsletter, Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016, 10:35pm

Happy Wednesday, Music Boxers

Opening this Friday, Jason Bateman & Nicole Kidman star in the new dramedy The Family Fang. Based on the New York Times bestselling novel, Bateman & Kidman are reunited siblings brought back together when their performance artist father (Christopher Walken) goes missing. Variety calls it a “Sharp and affecting dysfunctional-family portrait”

Ride into Valhalla this Friday & Saturday at Midnight with Mad Max: Fury Road! George Miller’s Academy Award-winning blockbuster will be presented on 35MM. The post-apocalyptic wasteland has never looked so good!

On Sunday, celebrate Mother’s Day with Meryl Streep and the music of ABBA, with our interactive presentation of Mamma Mia! Hosted by Dick O’Day, our screening kicks off with a live pre-show 1970’s fashion contest. Dress up in your best 70’s garb for your chance to win great prizes! Then play along with our audience participation guide while you watch the Broadway smash on the big screen. And stop by the Music Box Lounge for a Mamma Mia Mimosa! Get your tickets today.

Also playing this week, the shocking and darkly funny Green Room, from director Jeremy Saulnier (Blue Ruin) and featuring a transformative & unforgettable performance from Patrick Stewart. Alia Shawkat (Arrested Development), Anton Yelchin (Star Trek) and Imogen Poots (Knight of Cups) also star.

Sunday at Noon, Director Ross Lipman presents Notfilm, a new documentary that looks behind the scenes at Film, an underseen collaboration between an aging Buster Keaton and an emerging Samuel Beckett.

Cinema Science with The Field Museum returns next Tuesday with The Messenger, a new documentary that explores our deep-seated connection to songbirds and what the birds have to tell us about the state of our planet. The presentation will include a lively audience discussion with Dr. Peter Marra, Director of Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center.

On May 16th, TV legend Norman Lear visits the Music Box for the new documentary Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You, the definitive chronicle of the life and work of arguably the most influential creator, writer, and producer in the history of television. Directors Heidi Ewing & Rachel Grady will also be in attendance, tickets on sale now.

We also have screenings of the touching coming-of-age anime Classmates, the fashion documentary The First Monday in May, and midnight shows of the nail-biting thriller The Invitation.

See you at the movies

Mamma Mia returns for Mother’s Day!

Newsletter, Monday, May 2nd, 2016, 5:52pm

A Mother’s Day Chicago tradition returns this weekend, with Mamma Mia at the Music Box!

On Sunday, celebrate with Meryl Streep and the music of ABBA, with our interactive presentation that invites you to play along! Hosted by Dick O’Day, our screening kicks off with a live pre-show 1970’s fashion contest. Dress up in your best 70’s garb for your chance to win great prizes! Then play along with our audience participation guide while you watch the Broadway smash on the big screen.

And make sure you stop by the Music Box Lounge for a Mamma Mia Mimosa! It all happens at the Music Box this Sunday.

Anime comes to the Music Box!

Newsletter, Thursday, April 28th, 2016, 12:25pm

Hey Anime Fans,

The Music Box is pleased to continue presenting special anime engagements to our fantastic Chicago audience.

From the studio that produced Attack on Titan comes the critically acclaimed Project Itoh Trilogy, and the Music Box will be screening the first 2 films in the next several weeks. In Empire of Corpses, playing this weekend, an alternate version of 19th century London has been revolutionized by “corpse reanimation technology”, and a young medical student dives into the mystery of Dr. Frankenstein. In Harmony, playing May 17th & 21st, jump into a future ruled by an unwavering dedication to good health, as a girl gets swept up in a terrorist plot against the “perfect world” she lives in.

In the tender love story Dou Kyu Sei (Classmates), playing May 7th & 11th, an unlikely friendship blossoms between two adolescent boys. Initially perplexed and confused, not only about each other, but also about themselves, a bond grows between them that is deeper than they could have thought.

Full Schedule below. Get your tickets today, shows will sell out!

The Big Lebowski, Hitchcock’s Suspicion, Green Room & More!

Newsletter, Tuesday, April 26th, 2016, 5:47pm

Happy Wednesday Music Boxers

Hot off the presses, it’s our May/June 2016 Calendar! Featuring Blue Velvet 30th Anniversary shows, TV legend Norman Lear in-person, Foreign Matinees, The Grindhouse Film Festival, and many more films, series, and special events. Click HERE for the Full Schedule.

Opening this week, Fireworks Wednesday is a gripping, suspenseful drama, a story of marital intrigue and betrayal set against the backdrop of the Persian New Year. From Asghar Farhadi, the Academy Award winning director of A Separation and About Elly, Fireworks Wednesday won the Gold Hugo at the Chicago International Film Festival.

The film everyone’s talking about, the wickedly fun horror-thriller Green Room stars Patrick Stewart as a diabolical club owner who squares off against an unsuspecting but resilient young punk band. Shocking and exciting, Green Room demands to be seen on the big screen.

The Dude abides this Friday & Saturday with our midnight screenings of The Big Lebowski. Jeff Bridges & John Goodman are at their best in Joel & Ethan Coen’s iconic tale of mystery, mistaken identity & bowling. Before the movie, stop by the Music Box Lounge for our Hell of a Caucasian drink special, a White Russian with a Music Box twist.

Our 75th Anniversary of 1941 matinee series concludes this weekend with Alfred Hitchcock’s Suspicion. Cary Grant plays wonderfully against type as a charmer with a shady past who woos Joan Fontaine in an Oscar-winning role (The only Oscar-winning performance in a Hitchcock film!). Also nominated for Best Picture, Suspicion plays this Saturday & Sunday at 11:30am.

We also have daily screenings of the hit fashion documentary The First Monday In May and late night shows of the tense thriller The Invitation, and special weekend presentations of the anime Empire of Corpses.

Our Is It Still Funny with Mark Caro series wraps up on May 3rd with There’s Something About Mary. The Farrelly Bros outrageous comedy was the surprise hit of 1998. Discuss how it holds up this Tuesday at 7pm.

On Sunday, May 8th, celebrate Mother’s Day with Mamma Mia, the hit film musical based on the songs of ABBA. Hosted by Dick O’Day, dress up in your best disco gear and be sure to grab a Mamma Mia Mimosa in the Music Box lounge! Get your tickets today.

Rescheduled due to the ever-fickle Chicago weather, our Music Box Garden Party will now happen on Wednesday, May 4th, 5pm-9pm. Featuring tastings from Bell’s Brewery as well as Dablon Winery, we invite you to join us for a celebration of springtime in Chicago on our cozy outdoor space.

Finally, tickets are now on sale for the 2016 Chicago Critics Film Festival! Featuring over a dozen Chicago premieres of new films and special guests including Ira Sachs, Craig Robinson, Ti West, and more, this year’s festival is not to be missed.

See you at the movies

Happy 4/26! Here’s an Alien Day special announcement

Newsletter, Monday, April 25th, 2016, 10:45pm

Happy LV-426, everybody!

If you’re receiving this e-mail, congratulations, you’re on of the lucky few who has tickets to tonight’s SOLD OUT double feature of Ridley Scott’s Alien and James Cameron’s Aliens (in 70MM!). We hope you’re prepared to climb aboard the Nostromo and travel to the farthest reaches of space. Who knows what we’l find. . .

But before you do that, you’ll have to make it to the Music Box, and we wanted to give you fair warning, there is a Cubs game at Wrigley tonight at 7:05pm. Parking may be difficult around the Music Box, and we strongly recommend taking public transit. We’re just 3 blocks North of the Southport Brown Line stop and 7 blocks West of the Addison Red Line stop. You can also take the Ashland or Clark buses to their respective Waveland stops, we’re only a few blocks away. Or treat yourself to a cab!

There is metered street parking on Southport, as well as on Clark and on Ashland. Parking is available at Blaine Elementary parking lot, located at 1420 W Grace St, just north of the theatre on Southport. The lot there takes exact change or credit cards. There will be a 15 minute intermission between the films, so no need to worry about finding time to pay for more parking. If you do choose to drive, give yourself time to get through the traffic and get here early. You can relax with a drink in the Music Box Lounge, it will be open all afternoon. Seating for the double feature will begin at 6:20pm.

Finally, while you’re here, we’ll have a limited quantity of Mondo-designed ALIEN swag, including an awesome Ripley T-shirt and Nostromo Pins & Patches. Only available at the Music Box, only on ALIEN DAY, while supplies last!

See you tonight

Green Room, Serial Mom, The Maltese Falcon, Aliens in 70MM & More!

Newsletter, Wednesday, April 20th, 2016, 3:03pm

Happy Wednesday Music Boxers,

Opening this Friday, From the director of Blue Ruin comes Green Room, the brilliantly crafted and wickedly fun horror-thriller, starring Patrick Stewart as a diabolical club owner who squares off against an unsuspecting but resilient young punk band. The Village Voice raves “[It’s] an impeccably crafted cinematic torture machine – in the best possible way.”

You also have another week to catch the new documentary The First Monday in May, as it follows the creation of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s most attended fashion exhibition in history, featuring interviews with renowned artists in fashion, film & the arts, as well as a host of contemporary pop icons.

This Saturday, CAMP Night at the Box returns with a special screening of John Waters’ Serial Mom! Join your host, the incomparable Miss Lucy Stoole, in the Music Box Lounge for pregame cocktails at 10pm and catch the flick starting at Midnight. Serial Mom will also play Friday at Midnight, without the special preshow.

On Monday, check back for the line-up of this year’s Chicago Critics Film Festival, returning for another great year at the Music Box on May 20th-26th! We’ll be revealing the Full Schedule, Special Guests and more, for the best year yet of the only current example of a major film critics group hosting its own festival. Tickets will go on sale Monday at Noon. Want to make sure you’ve got a seat for all of their special screenings? Get a Festival Pass today!

Next Tuesday, no one can hear you scream, with LV-426/Alien Day! In honor of LV426, the moon where the Nostromo first encounters the Xenomorph eggs that started so much trouble, The Music Box joins Twentieth Century Fox, Mondo & The Alamo Drafthouse to bring you this one-of-a-kind, nationwide celebration on Earth’s “426”, April 26. Head into space with a Double Feature of Ridley Scott’s Alien and a 70MM screening of James Cameron’s Aliens. It all starts on 4/26 at 7pm.

Our weekend matinees include Humphrey Bogart in the essential Film Noir The Maltese Falcon (Part of our 75 Years of 1941 Series) and an in-depth look into Spain’s most influential artist with Goya: Visions of Flesh and Blood (Part of our Art & Architecture in Cinema Series).

We’ll also have midnight screenings of the creepy new thriller The Invitation, with an ending that will shock you to your core.

Also on Tuesday, the Marx Brother go to war in Duck Soup (Part of our Is It Still Funny series, hosted by Mark Caro). Then, on Wednesday, National Theatre Live presents an inventive production of Shakespeare’s delirious comedy As You Like It.

Finally, in February of 2015, the Music Box Theatre was proud to unveil its new Lounge, offering patrons a comfortable and inviting place to enjoy music, drinks and lively discussion. Shortly thereafter, we opened our back patio to become the Music Box Garden. In celebration of the return of warm weather, on Thursday, April 28th, we’re throwing a grand opening for this year’s Garden space, featuring tastings from Bell’s Brewery as well as Dablon Winery from 5 to 9pm. Kick back and relax with a glass of wine or a bottle of beer and enjoy this hidden gem in Chicago’s Southport Corridor.

See you at the movies

The Invitation with Director Q&A! First Monday in May! The Last Dragon!

Newsletter, Wednesday, April 13th, 2016, 12:19pm

Happy Wednesday Music Boxers,

This Friday, director Karyn Kusama (Jennifer’s Body, Girlfight) visits the Music Box for her new film, the taut thriller The Invitation. A dinner party turns ominous as a man thinks his ex-wife and her new husband have sinister intentions for their guests. Variety calls it “A perfectly pitched exercise in psychological dread”. Kusama and co-writer Phil Hay will host an audience Q&A after the 7pm screening on Friday. Limited tickets still available.

Also opening on Friday, the new documentary The First Monday in May follows the creation of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s most attended fashion exhibition in history, featuring interviews with renowned artists in fashion, film & the arts, as well as a host of contemporary pop icons. On Thursday, April 21st, join Elle Val Boutique as they display their spring collection in The Music Box Theatre Lounge in conjunction with the 8pm screening of The First Monday In May.

Celebrate the 30th Anniversary of The Last Dragon, the 80’s action/motown/kung fu classic with star Taimak in-person! Featuring a Q&A and book signing. Tuesday, April 19th at 7:30pm.

On Saturday night, Access Contemporary Music presents the 11th Annual Sound of Silent Film Festival, with newly composed scores performed live to modern silent films from around the world. This one-night-only event is a must for film lovers of all ages. Tickets on sale now.

Our matinees this weekend include the Oscar-winning afterlife comedy Here Comes Mr. Jordan (Part of our 75th Anniversary of 1941 series), the gritty thriller Remember starring Christopher Plummer, and a special filmed presentation of Opéra National de Paris’ stunning ballet Millepied/Robbins/Balanchine.

Two late night favorites return to the Music Box this weekend, with the so-bad-it’s-good The Room on Friday at Midnight, and the ultimate cult musical The Rocky Horror Picture Show on Saturday at Midnight, with live shadowcast!

Next Tuesday, our new series Is It Still Funny with Mark Caro presents Mel Brooks’ take on the Wild West with Blazing Saddles, and dares ask the question “Is punching a horse really that funny?”.

See you at the movies

Save the Date, the Music Box of Horrors returns October 15th, 2016!

Newsletter, Thursday, April 7th, 2016, 12:00pm

Hey Horror Fans!

Like a masked maniac in a slasher flick, The Music Box of Horrors is coming back! The Music Box of Horrors creeps back to Chicago on Saturday, October 15th, 2016 at Noon! Our annual 24-hour marathon of frightful films is one of the highlights of our year, a day of scares & surprises where only the strong survive. Films and Special Guests will be announced at a later date, but trust us, we have some spectacularly spooky things up our sleeves!

If you can’t wait six months for your next big scares, don’t worry, we have you covered! On April 15th, director Karyn Kusama (Jennifer’s Body) will visit the Music Box for her new film The Invitation. In this erie psychological thriller, a dinner party turns ominous as a man thinks his ex-wife and her new husband have sinister intentions for their guests. Rated 95% Fresh on RottenTomatoes, Variety calls it “A perfectly pitched exercise in psychological dread”. Kusama and co-writer Phil Hay will host an audience Q&A after the 7pm screening. Get your tickets today!

See you at the movies

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