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Doc Films Releases A Packed Autumn Schedule

By Steven Pate in Arts & Entertainment on Sep 20, 2012 7:40PM

2012_09_20_docfilms.jpg With autumn in the air, hoodies sprouting up everywhere you look and leaves threatening to turn any second, it's time for movie fans to head back to campus. The good news is that there's no pesky tuition fees or onerous enrollment processes required. Doc Films has released the fall schedule for what they describe as their 80th year.

As usual, we think it is strong enough to get you checking the Jeffrey Express bus schedule more than a few times, with each night of the week packed with interesting stuff.

Mondays are for Francophiles, with a killer selection of French heavy on 50s crime flicks that get cooler with age. Tuesdays are devoted to two enduring American originals: John Waters and Joe Dante, with Wednesdays featuring a choice selection of a third American auteur of recent vintage, John Carpenter.

Thursdays accommodate two programs, an early evening survey of 1950s Sci-Fi and a later showing of Wuxia films (think Chinese martial arts Westerns) from Shaw Brothers Studios. Fridays are devoted to the films of Japanese animation icon Studio Ghibli (best known in the States for Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke). Weekends are split between are popcorn-friendly and art house hits from the last year or so on Saturdays and intriguing hour-long programs of found footage based art cinema on Sundays.

To give you an idea of the breadth of this schedule, all you need to do is look at any particular week's offering. Take the final week's incredible crescendo. Beginning with Sunday's program of work from Stan Brakhage associate Phil Solomon, we turn to Jean-Luc Godard's farewell to the New Wave, Made in U.S.A, Joe Dante's subversively anti-war Small Soldiers, Carpenter's brilliant sci-fi send-up of consumerism, They Live, Richard Fleischer's air-tight, crowd pleasing adventure 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Stephen Chow's beloved and funny Kung Fu Hustle, Hayao Miyazaki's justly renowned Spirited Away and cap it off with one of the biggest films of 2012, The Dark Knight Rises. That is quite a week of programming.

All kinds of wonderful nuggets are lodged throughout, such as the Filmdrunk “frotcast" on November 3 and 4 to accompany of the Stephen King Hunger Games precursor turned Schwarzenegger vehicle, The Running Man. We have no idea what sex-related stuff what those guys could possibly have to talk about. No sir. It's a schedule strong enough to get you to take a hard look at that $30 quarterly membership.

General admission is $5; Doc Films is located in the Max Palevsky Cinema in Ida Noyes Hall at The University of Chicago (1212 East 59th Street, Chicago, IL 60637)