fbpx Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool | Gene Siskel Film Center
Film Series: Runs & Limited Engagements

Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool

2019, Stanley Nelson, USA, 114 min.


Show Times

  • Fri, Oct 4th 2:00pm
  • Fri, Oct 4th 7:45pm
  • Sat, Oct 5th 5:15pm
  • Sun, Oct 6th 2:30pm
  • Mon, Oct 7th 8:00pm
  • Tue, Oct 8th 6:00pm
  • Wed, Oct 9th 6:00pm
  • Thu, Oct 10th 8:15pm
  • Fri, Oct 11th 6:00pm
  • Sat, Oct 12th 2:45pm
  • Sat, Oct 12th 7:45pm
  • Sun, Oct 13th 5:15pm
  • Mon, Oct 14th 7:45pm
  • Tue, Oct 15th 6:00pm
  • Wed, Oct 16th 7:45pm
  • Thu, Oct 17th 8:15pm
Chicago premiere! Stanley Nelson in person!

"A tantalizing portrait: rich, probing, mournful, romantic, triumphant, tragic, exhilarating, and blisteringly honest."—Owen Gleiberman, Variety

"Humanises a musical genius and ends up giving us an engrossing, hilarious, informative look at the Miles Davis that music fans thought they knew."—Jake Watt, Switch

Jazz giant Miles Davis was one of the most colossal and complex figures of twentieth-century music, his personal demons and creative drive fueling a capacity for continual self-reinvention. No film could hope to encompass such a copious subject, but expert documentarian Stanley Nelson (THE BLACK PANTHERS) does a remarkable job of giving shape to Davis's prodigious life and career. His many musical evolutions are lucidly charted, from his bop beginnings through his game-changing excursions into lyrical cool, modal bop, fusion, and late-career pop. Passages from his autobiography, voiced by Carl Lumbly in Davis's distinctive rasp, take us through his battles with racism, substance abuse, and anger. Especially notable among the many interviews are revealing reminiscences from his great loves, French singer Juliette Greco and first wife Frances Taylor, both fated to become way stations in Davis's eternally restless journey. DCP digital. (MR)

Director Stanley Nelson and Vince Wilburn Jr (Miles Davis' nephew/bandmate) are scheduled to appear for audience discussion on Oct. 4 (7:45 show only), Oct 5, and Oct. 6. The discussions will be moderated by:
Oct. 4: Chicago radio personality Richard Steele;
Oct. 5: Chicago Tribune music contributor, author, and former Downbeat editor Aaron Cohen;
Oct. 6: Columbia College Film professor Stan West.

Buy a ticket at our regular prices for either MILES DAVIS: BIRTH OF THE COOL or ELEVATOR TO THE GALLOWS, and get a ticket for any show of the other film at this discount rate with proof of your original purchase: General Admission $7; Students $5; Members $4. (This discount price applies to the second film only. Discount available in person at the box office only.)

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