Chicago Critics Film Festival highlights, lineup

OPENING — Fast Color
With Gugu Mbatha-Raw
and Jordan Horowitz
in attendance

CLOSING — Eighth Grade
With filmmaker Bo Burnham
in attendance

(Chicago, IL) The Chicago Film Critics Association (CFCA), the Chicago-area print, online and broadcast critics group that celebrates the art of film and film criticism, ​today announces the complete lineup, schedule and special guests expected for the sixth annual Chicago Critics Film Festival, May 4-10 at the Music Box Theatre​.

Opening Night on Friday, May 4 features the Midwest premiere of ​Fast Color,​ starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw (​A Wrinkle in Time​) as a woman whose superhero powers send her on the run; ​Mbatha-Raw and co-writer and producer, Jordan Horowitz (​La La Land​), will be in Chicago for the occasion​.

More information on the complete schedule and special guests is below and online; festival passes and individual tickets are also available online ​here​.

Highlights of this highly-curated, week-long festival

“First Reformed​,” starring Ethan Hawke as a rural pastor whose life spirals out of control after an encounter with an environmental activist and his pregnant wife;​ filmmaker Paul Schrader is scheduled to attend the festival

“Searching​,” starring John Cho (​Columbus​) as a father investigating his daughter’s disappearance through
the digital footprint she’s left behind; ​filmmaker Aneesh Chaganty and co-writer/producer Sev Ohanian
are scheduled to attend the festival

“Leave No Trace​,” Debra Granik’s story of a single father (Ben Foster) and his daughter living off the grid until a single mistake derails their idyllic existence

“On Chesil Beach​,” Saoirse Ronan’s first film since the runaway success of ​Lady Bird​, based on the Ian McEwan novel about sexual politics and freedom in 1962 England

A 25th anniversary screening of Steven Spielberg’s classic ​”Jurassic Park” ​on 35mm​, celebrating the
launch of one of the most successful franchises in cinema

“Damsel​,” starring Robert Pattinson as a well-off pioneer who ventures West to marry the woman he loves, told with the off-kilter humor and unpredictability of ​directing duo David and Nathan Zellner, who are both scheduled to attend the festival

“Bodied​,” a satire set in the world of competitive battle rap produced by Eminem; ​filmmaker Joseph Kahn is scheduled to attend the festival

Featuring over twenty-five programs selected with care by some of the most respected film journalists in the city, this year’s Chicago Critics Film Festival includes four documentaries (​Abducted in Plain Sight​; ​Hal,​ about the career of legendary filmmaker Hal Ashby; ​Liyana​; and ​Three Identical Strangers​); presentations of two exceptional 35mm prints (a 25th Anniversary screening of ​Jurassic Park​ and Yasujiro Ozu’s classic ​Woman of Tokyo​); and two short film programs scheduled to screen on Sunday, May 6 and Monday, May 7.

The festival’s Closing Night selection is ​Eighth Grade​, written and directed by Bo Burnham and starring Elsie Fisher​ (​Despicable Me​) as a middle schooler enduring the tidal wave of contemporary suburban adolescence as she survives the last week of the school year before officially making it to high school.

A Sundance Film Festival official selection, filmmaker Bo Burnham will be in attendance to help close out the festival on Thursday, May 10.



Runner-up for Best Film Festival in the Chicago ​Reader​’s 2017 “Best of Chicago” poll, the CCFF annually features a selection of acclaimed films chosen by members of the organization, a combination of recent festival favorites and as-yet-undistributed works from a variety of filmmakers, from established Oscar winners to talented newcomers. It is the only current example of a major film critics group that hosts its own festival.

The best way to ensure access to every aspect of the week-long event is to secure a festival pass, just $150 and available online here​.

The Chicago Critics Film Festival and the CFCA gratefully acknowledge the support of festival sponsors, including Abt, the Chicago-based electronics and appliances store, returning this year. Follow the CFCA and the festival on Twitter at ​@chicagocritics​ and on Facebook ​here​.

To view the complete lineup for the sixth annual Chicago Critics Film Festival, click here.

To secure tickets / passes in advance visit​.