The 24th Chicago International Children's Film Festival ranges from collections of short films suitable for preschoolers (like the Swedish animation Aston's Stones, screening as part of "Play Date") to dramatic features for school-age kids. Among the latter are The Three Robbers, an animation about a trio of highwaymen adopted by an orphan girl (Sat 10/20, 10:30 AM, Davis); Crusade: March Through Time, a live-action drama in which a teenager time-travels back to the Middle Ages and gets sucked into the Children's Crusade to free Jerusalem from the forces of Islam (Sat 10/20, 11:30 AM, Davis); Desmond and the Swamp Barbarian Tramp, an animation about forest animals who construct a trap for the monster who's stealing their stuff (Sun 10/21, 10 AM, Davis); and Moondance Alexander, a live-action drama about a girl whose lonely life in a small town brightens after she finds a pinto horse (Sun 10/21, 11:30 AM, Davis). Professional actors will be on hand to read subtitles aloud for programs geared to kids nine and under.
In addition to the screenings, which continue next weekend, the festival offers several workshops on moviemaking techniques, among them acting, animation, sound effects, and documentary filmmaking. Registration for workshops is required in advance at cicff.org (by phone, 773-281-2166 or 773-281-9075).
For the complete festival schedule see cicff.org. Tickets can be ordered at ticketweb.com or 866-468-3401. a Davis, 4614 N. Lincoln, 773-784-0893; Facets Cinematheque, 1517 W. Fullerton, 773-281-4114; $8, $6 for children.
Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Aston's Stones.