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  • 18 September 2009

British Events for ‘Chicago’

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Wednesday, October 7, 8.30 p.m.

Goldstein + Nelson Algren Live Reading

Barbican Cinema 2 (level four of The Barbican)

A film and live reading in celebration of the centenary of Nelson Algren, Chicago author of The Man With the Golden Arm, Never Come Morning and A Walk on the Wild Side, transatlantic lover of Simone de Beauvoir, friend of the urban underground and a posthumous contributor to Granta 108.

With thanks to Seven Stories publishers, we present a live reading by two actors of extracts from the play Nelson Algren Live, first performed at the Steppenwolf Theater in Chicago in April; a series of scenes from Algren’s life and work, co-written by Barry Gifford (David Lynch’s screenwriter) and Dan Simon [35 min].

Watch Algren on screen in a rarely-seen 1960s cinematic fusion of relationships, philosophy, music and baseball. A black and white hipster fable shot around 1960s Chicago, visually and philosophically inspired by the French New Wave. An old man emerges woolly-haired and semi-naked from Lake Michigan, and heads into the city for a chain of odd encounters and ecstatic musical interludes.

Goldstein: A sculptor, after his girlfriend has an abortion, is compelled to search for the mysterious wanderer who could be the twin of his own father. His exploration takes him to Nelson Algren’s office, where the writer himself delivers a monologue short story about local baseball player turned cop, Lost Ball Stahouska. Director Philip Kaufman went on to make The Right Stuff and Henry and June and to write the Indiana Jones movies. Goldstein, his directorial debut edited by Adolfas Mekas, brother of Jonas, won the Prix de la Nouvelle Critique at Cannes in 1964 and is a rarely seen experimental gem. ‘The best American film I have seen in 20 years’ - Jean Renoir. US 1965, 85 min.

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