Chicago Film History at the 57th Chicago International Film Festival, October 17, 2021

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CHICAGO – Day 5 of the 57th Chicago International Film Festival (CIF) will present a documentary on Oscar Micheaux, the initiator of black cinema, which began in Chicago. (Click on OSCAR MICHEAUX for more details), as well as a host of films and events.

The 57th Chicago International Film Festival DAYTIME FIVE offers indoor, drive-in and virtual / online screenings. Click here for a complete guide to navigating the 57th CIF. And click DAYTIME FIVE for the full range of films.

Oscar Micheaux – The superhero of black cinema
Photo credit: Chicago International Film Festival

EVENTS OF THE DAYTIME: 10h00: “Coffee Talk:” Pandemic Cinema: Film Art in the Age of Contagion “(click here).

APPEARANCES OF THE DAYTIME: 12h00: “For the left hand”… Special guests scheduled. 12:00 pm: “White Building”… Special guests planned. 5:00 pm: “The fairies of Shankar”… Special guests scheduled. 7:30 p.m .: “Shorts 6: Side Splitting (Comedy)”… Special guests (the filmmakers) scheduled.

MOVIE OF THE DAYTIME: Oscar Micheaux – The superhero of black cinema “ – Maître Micheaux is often called a man ahead of his time, but as an expert in this documentary advises, he was simply a man of his time and commenting on his time. And that was radical because Micheaux was black and made films that commented on the black experience of early 20th century Jim Crow. Born in Metropolis, Illinois (hence the Superman / hero reference), Micheaux came to Chicago to seek his fortune and ended up – thanks to his trips to work for a railroad – as a homesteader in South Dakota. . His experiences were sold in his self-published novels, and then through his adaptations in his films. After establishing himself as a Chicago filmmaker, the first major black filmmaker, he spent the rest of his career in Harlem, New York. It’s a must-read documentary if you’re interested in film history, but it also contains lessons in perseverance for all of us. It also features several movie lions who have since passed away, including John Singleton, Haskell Wexler, and most recently Melvin Van Peebles. And they all stood on the shoulders of Oscar Michelaux.

Extract from the film “Swing! »By Oscar Micheaux from 1938…

The 57th Chicago International Film Festival runs until October 24, 2021. Click here for times and to purchase tickets.

© 2021 Patrick McDonald,

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