Fritz Lang, song-and-dance man—and other notable screenings | Bleader

Fritz Lang, song-and-dance man—and other notable screenings


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Miriam Makeba in Lionel Rogosins Come Back, Africa (1959), screening as part of the African Diaspora Film Festival
  • Miriam Makeba in Lionel Rogosin's Come Back, Africa (1959), screening as part of the African Diaspora Film Festival
Yeah, I know: you thought Fritz Lang was a sinister Teuton, clicking his heels and shrieking abuse at actors and farting the prelude to Tristan und Isolde. But there was another Fritz Lang, the Fritz Lang with a song in his heart, who directed the musical You and Me (1938) for Paramount. Ben Sachs revisits this cinematic oddity—which screens next week at the Portage, courtesy of the Northwest Chicago Film Society—in this week's long review. We also have a Reader Recommends box for Your Sister's Sister, the latest from Humpday director Lynn Shelton, and a sidebar for the African Diaspora Film Festival, which runs all week at Facets Cinematheque and includes a new print of the classic documentary Come Back, Africa (1959) by Lionel Rogosin (On the Bowery).

Check out the new issue for capsule reviews of The Bitter Buddha, a documentary about comedian's comedian Eddie Pepitone; Here, with Ben Foster as an American photographer who falls in love with an Armenian journalist; Leaving, the first and only movie directed by the acclaimed Czech playwright and statesman Vaclav Havel; Lola Versus, with Greta Gerwig as a young woman looking for love in New York City; Portrait of Wally, a documentary about the international legal battle that erupted around a painting by Austrian expressionist Egon Schiele; Rock of Ages, a screen version of the popular jukebox musical about 80s rock on the Sunset Strip; Safety Not Guaranteed, with Mark Duplass as a time traveler looking for a woman to come along for the ride; and That's My Boy, starring SNL grad Andy Samberg as the resentful son of big baby Adam Sandler.

Best bets for repertory: Robert Zemeckis's Back to the Future (1985), midnight Friday and Saturday at Music Box; John Huston's The Maltese Falcon (1941), Friday night at the Logan; Hayao Miyazaki's My Neighbor Tortoro (1989), throughout the week at Gene Siskel Film Center; Rob Reiner's The Princess Bride (1987), midnight Friday and Saturday at Landmark's Century Centre; and at Music Box, in honor of Father's Day, a quartet of James Bond movies (yeah, my dad loved them too): Dr. No (1962), From Russia With Love (1964), Live and Let Die (1973), and Octopussy (1983).

And don't forget this week's special events: On Saturday morning the Wilmette has Sing-a-Long Mary Poppins, chim-chim-chiree. On Saturday night the Music Box presents the Found Footage Film Festival, Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher's touring showcase of green shit from the ruined bowels of the American heartland. And on Sunday, Chicago Cultural Center presents the third and last installment of the Studs Terkel Film Festival, celebrating the centennial of the late, great Chicago journalist.