“Lynne Ramsay rediscovers the forgotten art of poetic realism.” - David Parkinson, Empire Magazine

“A gorgeous blend of beauty and squalor, packed with imagery that will play over and over in your head for weeks.” - Elvis Mitchell, New York Times

Tuesday, August 20, 6:00 p.m. | Before such arresting films as YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE, WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT KEVIN, and her tour-de-force MORVERN CALLAR, the then 29-year-old Scottish filmmaker wowed Cannes—and then Chicago—with her lyrical and haunting portrait of James, a 12-year-old boy living in the rat-infested flats of Glasgow during the trash-collectors’ strike of 1975. Luminously photographed, this blistering and poetic child’s-eye-view fable hinges on a random act of violence—one that ripples throughout the young boy’s coming-of-age journey.

Awards & Nominations

Winner - Silver Hugo, Chicago International Film Festival
Winner - 2000 Winner Carl Foreman Award for the Most Promising Newcomer, BAFTA Awards
Nominee - Un Certain Regard Award, Cannes Film Festival

Before They Were BigAll filmmakers have to start somewhere, and for many, the Chicago International Film Festival was a crucial part of their journey from novice to auteur. In honor of the festival’s 60th anniversary, they present four auspicious and visionary directorial debuts that screened at the festival, each one showcasing the budding brilliance of their makers. Synopses provided by the Chicago International Film Festival. View full series

The Film Center is ADA accessible. This presentation will be projected without open captions. The theater is hearing-loop equipped. For accessibility requests, please email filmcenter@saic.edu