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Blues Brothers Boost

By Rob Christopher in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 22, 2007 4:05PM

Chicagoist is headed to London. (Well, OK, not the entire staff, just one of us.) We'll be visiting a friend of ours there who's never been to Chicago and, furthermore, isn't too familiar with Toddler's town and our lovable CTA. Naturally we've taken it upon ourselves to educate him.

2007_3bluesbrothers2.jpgWhen he told us that he has a multi-region DVD player a little PowerPoint light bulb went off in our heads. Aha! Buy him a DVD, we told ourselves. That got us to thinking about what movies are quintessentially Chicago. After much thought (and a casual hint from our friend letting us know that he'd never seen it) we chose The Blues Brothers. Though it probably seems almost cliche to us natives and long-time residents, it's a film which succinctly captures an awful lot of what makes Chicago Chicago. From Wrigley Field ("1060 West Addison") to Maxwell Street, the Picasso, Illinois Nazis and beyond, The Blues Brothers packs it all in. Especially for someone who's never been here before.

Once we settled on that we started shopping around, only to be overwhelmed by a plethora of options. We counted at least four editions to choose from. There's the "Collector's Edition" (both pan-and-scan and widescreen) and the "25th Anniversary Edition" (also pan-and-scan and widescreen). And people wonder why DVD sales have flattened out! We understand that Universal wants to try and squeeze every drop of revenue possible, but if you aren't careful you could even accidentally buy the depressingly-mediocre sequel Blues Brothers 2000 or "The Best of the Blues Brothers" retrospective DVD.

We opted for the "Collector's Edition" and first thought we'd try Reckless Records for a used copy. (Hey, we're going to London and need to be thrifty!) No dice. We looked at other used DVD outlets around town and found nary a copy. Our conclusion? People do not part with their copies of The Blues Brothers (at least in Chicago). That would be akin to selling your sister.

Anyhow, we've gotten off track a bit here. We chose The Blues Brothers, but if you wanted to introduce an out-of-towner to the Windy City what would be your choice for a quintessentially Chicago movie? (And please do not pick Chicago; it was shot in Canada).