Free Chicago Latino Film Festival Series
When: Wednesdays, January 15, 22, 29, February 5, 12, 19, 2020 6:30pm
Where: Chicago Cultural Center, Claudia Cassidy Theater, 78 E. Washington St. Free admission on a first-come, first served basis and limited to theater capacity.
Attend six free films in preview of the Chicago Latino Film Festiva.
Wednesday, January 15, 2020 / 6:30pm The Trip 2 / El paseo 2 Colombia/2012/90 min. Directed by Harold Trompetero. Genre: Comedy. Spanish w/ English Subtitles
John Leguizamo stars as Lucho Calvo, a family man whose dream vacation turns into a nightmare in this hilarious sequel to one of Colombia’s biggest box office hits.
Wednesday, January 22, 2020 / 6:30pm My Mexican Shivah / Morirse está en hebreo. Mexico/2006/98 min. Directed by Alejandro Springall. Genre: Comedy. Spanish & Hebrew w/ English Subtitles
According to Jewish belief, from the moment a person is born, he or she is accompanied by two angels: an angel of light and an angel of darkness. With the passing of grandfather Moishe, his family and friends gather in Mexico city to sit shivah, the 7-day Jewish mourning ritual. During this time, aspects of the family’s Jewish-Mexican identity become evident.
Wednesday, January 29, 2020 / 6:30pm Once Upon a Fish / De pez en cuando Dominican Republic/2014/80 min. Directed by Francisco Valdez. Genre: Comedy. Spanish w/ English Subtitles
Ben, a young frustrated writer overwhelmed with his failures, decides to take his own life. But fate has other plans for him; a neighbor asks him to give his daughter a ride to the University; and he is assaulted by two thugs who’ve been following a gorgeous stewardess who asked Ben to look after her fish. And that’s just the beginning in this over-the-top comedy of errors.
Wednesday, February 5, 2020 / 6:30pm A Wedding in Castañer / Una Boda en Castañer Puerto Rico/2915/112 min. Directed by Raúl García Genre: Comedy Spanish w/ English Subtitles
The mountain town of Castañer is going to witness what promises to be the greatest wedding in its history: that of Mariana Zalduondo, only daughter of respected doctor Eduardo Zalduondo, and Ender, her medical school classmate. All hell breaks loose when past mistakes as well as cultural (and even racial) prejudices threaten to derail the wedding in this entertaining comedy.
Wednesday, February 12, 2020 / 6:30pm Heart of Lion / Corazón de león Argentina/2013/108 min. Directed by Marcos Carnevale
Genre: Comedy Spanish w/ English Subtitles
Long divorced from her law firm partner, tall and beautiful Ivana receives a call from architect Leon Godoy (Guillermo Francella), who has found her ex-husband’s lost cell phone; she falls in love with his voice and agrees to meet with him. But, much to her surprise, Leon is short…really short…he is only four and a half feet tall. She soon learns that height is not a barrier when it comes to love.
Wednesday, February 19, 2020 / 6:30pm Looking For A Boyfriend…For My Wife / Se busca novio…para mi mujer Chile /2017/99 min. Directed by Diego Rougier. Genre: Comedy. Spanish w/ English Subtitles
Diego Rougier’s new film centers on Daniel (Fernando Larraín), a frustrated husband who has lost his patience with his rather temperamental wife Natalia (Javiera Contador). Afraid to ask her for a divorce, Daniel follows his best friend’s advice and hires a Lothario who can seduce her out of his life. And, of course, things do not go according to plan.
Who is Claudia Cassidy?
If you attend events at the Chicago Cultural Center you’ve no doubt visited the Claudia Cassidy Theater. Who is she/was she? Of course the spectacular Newberry Library, which holds her papers, has a nice biography online. To summarize: she was a sometimes caustic Chicago Tribune theater critic while maligned by some was still respected enough by her peers to get a theater named after her.
Claudia Cassidy was born in 1900 in Shawneetown, IL, where she first encountered the performing arts on show boats that cruised the Ohio River. When she was 14, Cassidy’s parents George and Olive moved the family to Champaign, IL.
After graduating from the University of Illinois in 1921, Cassidy worked as a secretary at the Chicago Journal of Commerce, where she moved into theater criticism. Her sharp, opinionated writing style made her column an important feature of the Journal.
In 1941 she moved to the Chicago Sun and then the Chicago Tribune at the behest of publisher Robert R. McCormick. While at the Tribune, Cassidy wrote her “On the Aisle” commentary as well as other reviews and articles steadily 1965.
After 1965, Cassidy wrote on a free-lance basis for the Tribune, Chicago Magazine, and other publications, and from 1968 to 1983 she hosted a weekly radio program of arts criticism on Chicago’s WFMT-FM.
Cassidy, sometimes referred to as “Acidy Cassidy,” was an influential presence on the Chicago theater scene. Her writing alienated and angered some in the arts community, but her praise also promoted the careers of others, including Tennessee Williams, Lotte Lehmann, and Maria Callas.
Cassidy fiercely supported Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie,” which premiered at Chicago’s Civic Theatre in 1944. She also strongly influenced the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, where her public admiration or disdain of music directors had a direct effect on the CSO’s history.
Cassidy was married to William J. Crawford for 57 years. After his death in 1986, she retreated from public life and lived alone at the Drake Hotel. Her last published writing was for the 1990-1991 Lyric Opera program book. She died after a brief illness on July 21, 1996.
Her obit in the NYTimes Claudia Cassidy, 96, Arts Critic; Did Not Mince Words in Chicago give more details.
She got a theater named after her in 1997. Here’s the Trib article on the dedication. now we know!