CIMMFest unleashes itself on the city for the third time on Thursday with a mash of movies, music and movies with music in them. But with about 70 films from all over the world shown over four days at CIMMFest, as the Chicago International Movies and Music Festival is known, choosing what to see won't be simple. To help out, we've picked out these six can't-miss CIMMFest screenings.
Fix: The Ministry Movie: CIMMFest opens with a film that's incredibly musical and incredibly Chicago. "Fix: The Ministry Movie" follows the iconic Chi-town industrial band, Ministry, through its liquor-drenching audience concerts and backstage chemical hazes, exploring the raw emotions of artistry of rock and roll. Also opining in the film are members of Tool, Korn and Jane's Addiction, as well as newly minted Oscar winner Trent Reznor. Ministry bassist Paul Barker, film producer Ed Bates and "Fix" director Douglas Freel are scheduled to appear at the screening at Music Box, which will be the film's world premiere.
7:30 pm Thursday; Music Box, 3733 N. Southport
Keep it Moving: Even festival organizers could not have made the timing for "Keep it Moving" more apropos to current events than this. Making its premiere the week Cote d'Ivoire strongman and former president Laurent Gbagbo was arrested, the documentary follows three Chicago hip-hop artists on their trip last year to the African country. Amina Norman-Hawkins, "Coolout" Chris Hawkins and Angela "Ang13" Zone spent fourteen days last summer as cultural envoys through an initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Embassy in the Ivory Coast and used hip-hop to forge partnerships and inspire youth. The movie's three stars will also appear at the free screening at the Chicago Cultural Center to answer questions.
7:30 p.m. Friday; Claudia Cassidy Theater, Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington
Bollywood Dream: It doesn't get more musically, internationally eclectic than "Bollywood Dream." Making its U.S. premiere, the fictional feature follows the quest of three Brazilian women (see photo) as they try to establish a career in Bollywood. Things go awry as soon as they arrive in India, and they're forced to break into an industry by relying on the assistance -- and choreographic skills -- of a young boy. This free screening at the Chicago Cultural Center will be paired with "Dress to Impress," a 10-minute musical short about wearing the right clothes to work.
8 pm Friday; Garland Hall, Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington
Arias with a Twist: When you mix a drag performer with a master puppeteer, you get "Arias with a Twist." This quirky film, which showcases the collaboration between drag artist Joey Arias and puppeteer Basil Twist, will be followed by an audio-visual set by Jayve Montgomery that's meant to prompt a dance party.
9 pm Thursday ($5 at the door); Berlin Club, 954 W. Belmont
Bouncing Cats: If there's going to be hip-hop in the Cote d'Ivoire, then there will be break dancing in Uganda. Narrated by Chicagoan Common, "Bouncing Cats" documents what Breakdance Project Uganda and B-boy culture does to engage endangered, poverty-stricken youth in Uganda, as well as bring together people of different tribal and religious backgrounds. The film includes interviews with Mos Def and Will.I.Am, as well as a question-and-answer session with Abramz Teyka, the founder of Breakdance Project Uganda.
5 pm Saturday; Wicker Park Art Center, 2215 W. North Ave
Blaze Foley: Duct Tape Messiah: CIMMFest closes with "Blaze Foley: Duct Tape Messiah," which traces the legendary, drama-filled life (and death) of singer-songwriter Blaze Foley. Known for his obsession with duct tape -- even his casket had duct tape slapped on it -- the folksy singer, who performed often in Chicago, has grown far more famous since his death because of his idiosyncratic life. Following the film, musician Gurf Morlix will perform a set of Blaze Foley songs, which include the melodic, melancholy "Clay Pigeons."
7 pm Sunday; The Hideout, 1354 W Wabansia Ave