Other venues: 'Forrest Gump,' 'The Terminator' and 'The Man Who Wasn't There'

Beverly Arts Center
2407 W. 111th St.

*"The Waiting Room" (U.S.; Peter Nicks, 2012) Shot over five months in an Oakland public hospital, "The Waiting Room" explores the state of medical care for the nation's uninsured. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday


Block Cinema
Northwestern University
40 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston

*"Clandestine Childhood" (Argentina/Spain/Brazil; Benjamin Ávila, 2011) In 1979 Argentina, a boy and his family live under assumed identities as family members fight the military junta. 7 p.m. Friday


Century 16 Deer Park; Century 12 Evanston/CineArts 6 & XD; Cinemark @ Louis Joliet Mall;
Cinemark @ Seven Bridges and IMAX, Woodridge; North Aurora, Cinemark Tinseltown USA


"Forrest Gump" ¿¿¿¿ (U.S.; Robert Zemeckis, 1994) From its very first image — a dizzyingly spectacular yet effortless-looking widescreen crane shot that follows a breeze-driven white feather as it wafts through sky and treetops, drifts down to a courthouse park in Savannah, Ga., drops briefly onto a pedestrian's shoulder, touches a passing car and then floats over and settles onto the right shoe of Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks) himself — this movie shows an extraordinary mix of technological mastery and effervescent vision. It's both massively inventive and light as air. The man on the bench, who then begins a rambling declamation and life story to a succession of fellow bus-stop sitters — some bored, some absorbed, all fairly dubious — is a warmly ingenuous 40-something Alabaman in a white suit. But, as he mildly insists, he has managed, despite an IQ hovering near 75 and a name (Forrest) borrowed from the founder of the Ku Klux Klan, to become an All-American halfback, a Vietnam War hero and Medal of Honor winner, a beacon of the peace movement, an international Ping-Pong champ, a shrimping tycoon profiled in Fortune and a nationally revered jogging guru. 2, 7 p.m. Wednesday


Doc Films
University of Chicago
Ida Noyes Hall
1212 E. 59th St.

"The Man Who Wasn't There" ¿¿¿¿ (U.S.; Joel Coen, 2001) "The Man" of the title is a taciturn barber named Ed Crane (Billy Bob Thornton), a chain-smoking middle-class loser trapped in a joyless existence, who narrates the story of his own downfall in a flat, toneless voice so empty of emotion it can chill you with nameless dread. Ed is one of those people so freakily detached from life that everyone else usually ignores him — which never seems to bother him. One person who doesn't ignore Ed is a squirmy, fast-talking itinerant little customer named Creighton Tolliver (Jon Polito). Tolliver doffs his toupee at Raffo's barbershop and later not only offers Ed a tasty business proposition — to become his silent partner in a new, trend-setting string of dry-cleaning emporiums — but even makes a flirty pass at the long-chaste Ed in Tolliver's fleabag little hotel room. This financial temptation proves to be the loose string that unravels all their lives. 7, 9:15 p.m., 11:30 p.m. Friday; 1 p.m. Sunday

"Last Year at Marienbad" ¿¿¿¿ (France; Alain Resnais, 1961). One of the most perplexing and emblematic entries in the mid-century European experimentalist film movement, "Last Year at Marienbad" remains as dreamy, creepy, enigmatic and maddening as in its own time. There are three characters who dominate, all named only by letters: X, or a stranger (Giorgio Albertazzi); A, his possible lover (Delphine Seyrig); and M, her escort or husband (Sacha Pitoeff). Albertazzi repeatedly insists he and Seyrig met last year at Marienbad — or was it Frederiksbad? — where they fell in love and agreed to reunite to make their escape. For much of the movie, she argues she doesn't know what he's talking about. She may — or may not — be slain by a gunshot from the jealous Pitoeff. 7, 9 p.m. Saturday; 3:15 p.m. Sunday

Logan Theatre
2646 N. Milwaukee Ave.

"Dirty Dancing" ¿¿¿ (U.S.; Emile Ardolino, 1987) Set in 1963 in a Grossinger's-like resort in the Catskills, the film takes a standard young-girl-coming-of-age story and works some marvelously intricate subplots around it, touching not simply on the discovery of sexuality but on cultural change, class relations and family melodrama. Stars Jennifer Grey, Patrick Swayze. 11:45 p.m. Friday

The Music Box Theatre
3733 N. Southport Ave.


"The Terminator" ¿¿¿¿ (U.S.; James Cameron, 1984) A stylish, ultra-gory, madly exciting sci-fi adventure starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as a huge, indestructible cyborg from the future who tracks a woman whose child holds the key to the future, while another time traveler tries to save her. With Linda Hamilton, Bill Paxton. In Cameron's 1991 sequel, "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" (¿¿¿), Schwarzenegger changes from killer robot to hero robot. Midnight Friday, Saturday


*"Hell Drivers" (U.K.; Cy Endfield, 1957) An ex-con (Stanley Baker) works to expose his boss' illegal ways. Also stars Sean Connery, Patrick McGoohan, Herbert Lom and David McCallum. 11:30 a.m. Saturday


Northbrook Public Library
1201 Cedar Lane

"Argo" ¿¿¿1/2 (U.S.; Ben Affleck, 2012) In 1979, 52 Americans were taken hostage in Tehran by Iranian revolutionary factions sympathetic to the Ayatollah Khomeini. Meantime, however, six U.S. State Department officials escaped before they could be captured and ended up hiding in the Canadian ambassador's home. CIA operative Tony Mendez (played by Affleck) concocted a plan: Fly into Tehran, posing as a member of a Canadian film crew scouting exotic locations for a "Star Wars" rip-off titled "Argo." Then fly out again, this time with the six Americans playing the roles of his Hollywood colleagues. Winner of the best picture Oscar for 2012. 1, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday

Northwest Chicago Film Society
Portage Theater
4050 N. Milwaukee Ave.

"Ohayo" ("Good Morning") ¿¿¿¿ (Japan; Yasujiro Ozu, 1959). Ozu's informal remake of his great silent 1932 comedy about children, "I Was Born, But ... ". Not as lyrical as its model, but just as penetrating, this one has another obstreperous brother combo who stage gas-expelling contests and wage a war to get a family TV. With Chishu Ryu. In Japanese, with English subtitles. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday

AMC Loews Streets of Woodfield
601 N. Martingale Road, Suite 105, Schaumburg, IL 60173

*"Day of the Falcon" (France; Jean-Jacques Annaud, 2011) In the early 20th century, rival Arab kingdoms face off after the discovery of oil in a shared territory. Stars Antonio Banderas, Mark Strong and Freida Pinto. Opens Friday.

*indicates a film not reviewed by the Chicago Tribune, but of interest.