Film Series: Runs & Limited Engagements

Abacus: Small Enough to Jail

2016, Steve James, USA, 88 min.

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Show Times

  • Fri, Jun 16th 2:00pm
  • Fri, Jun 16th 8:15pm
  • Sat, Jun 17th 3:00pm
  • Sat, Jun 17th 7:45pm
  • Sun, Jun 18th 5:15pm
  • Mon, Jun 19th 6:00pm
  • Mon, Jun 19th 7:45pm
  • Tue, Jun 20th 8:00pm
  • Wed, Jun 21st 6:00pm
  • Thu, Jun 22nd 8:45pm
First Chicago run! Steve James and Mark Mitten in person!

“Gripping real-life legal thriller with an appealing Chinese-American twist…both an affirmation and an indictment of the American Dream.” — Stephen Dalton, Hollywood Reporter

“An exemplary piece of filmmaking…it’s the human face that tells the story.” — Tom Charity, Sight & Sound

How did Abacus, a small family-run bank, become targeted by the feds to take the fall for the 2008 financial crisis when the Wall Street giants tiptoed away so handily, asks award-winning filmmaker Steve James (HOOP DREAMS, THE INTERRUPTERS) in this affecting David vs. Goliath chronicle. Jimmy Stewart’s George Bailey, banker hero of IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE, served as the role model for New York Chinatown lawyer Thomas Sung when he founded a community-friendly bank in the 1950s, serving an insular, bank-shy immigrant population. In 2010, his staff discovered and reported irregularities perpetrated by one mortgage manager, bringing down the wrath of the Justice Department, and making Abacus the sole bank to face federal charges in the wake of the financial crisis. Nineteen employees are led away in chains before TV cameras, and the resulting five-year media circus and show trial expose suspiciously glaring inequities in the government case. DCP digital. (BS)

Friday, June 16 at 8:15 PM: Director Steve James and producer Mark Mitten will be present for audience discussion. The discussion will be moderated by film critic Steve Prokopy.

Saturday, June 17 at 7:45 PM: Director Steve James and producer Mark Mitten will be present for audience discussion.

Sunday, June 18 at 5:15 PM: Director Steve James and producer Mark Mitten will be present for audience discussion.

Tuesday, June 20 at 8:00 PM: Director Steve James and producer Mark Mitten will be present for audience discussion. This screening is a Movie Club event.

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