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Back to School: Our Favorite Things
The Music Box

The Music Box

Jim Newberry

Matinees at the Music Box

A small popcorn, a cup of coffee smuggled in from a cafe on Southport, an artificial night sky illuminated by pinpoints of light, a movie by Altman, Resnais, or Rivette—if there’s a better place to spend a rainy weekend morning in Chicago than the Music Box, I haven’t found it. A budding cinephile once could cobble together a fine film appreciation class in more than half a dozen of the city’s early-20th-century movie palaces—there were double bills at the Parkway on Clark and the Varsity in Evanston, silent movies at the Gateway, and even occasional revivals at the Nortown and the Will Rogers. Most of those venues are gone now, and while there are still plenty of places to catch great movies, no working theater has the charm and history of the 1929 Music Box, which on Saturdays and Sundays at 11:30 AM screens some of the greatest films in history. True, there are some predictable choices—too many Hitchcocks and John Waynes for my taste. Yes, sometimes the film you want to see is not in the palatial theater but in the shoebox down the hall. And, irritatingly, sometimes the movies last longer than the time limit on the parking meters outside. But I’d still chance a parking ticket any day to sit beneath the stars and whistle along with the tune that plays as that red curtain is raised. 3733 N. Southport, 773-871-6604, musicboxtheatre.com. —Adam Langer

We also want to hear your stories about your favorite people, places, and things in the city--go here to share them with the rest of the class.


A & T Grill
Elizabeth M. Tamny

All Rise Gallery
Liz Armstrong

The Ando Gallery at the Art Institute
Tamara Faulkner

Bartender Ballet at the Violet Hour
Mike Sula


The Basement of After-Words
Monica Kendrick

The Blue Crab Lounge at Shaw’s
Michael Lenehan

The Butcher Shop
Noah Berlatsky

Deborah Butterfield’s “Ben”
Ryan Hubbard


The Diary of Virginia May Garcia
Noah Berlatsky

The Fern Room at the Garfield Park Conservatory
Martha Bayne

Fine Wine Brokers
Kathie Bergquist

The Grid
Bill Savage


Hideout Dance Parties
Martha Bayne

Jazz Record Mart and Dusty Groove
Peter Margasak

Jollyball at the Museum of Science and Industry
Noah Berlatsky

Ken Dunn
Mick Dumke


The Lobby Bar at Second City
Albert Williams

Lost & Found
Kathie Bergquist

Manhattans at the Matchbox
David Hammond

Matinees at the Music Box
Adam Langer


Marina City
Lynn Becker

The Mausoleum at Rosehill Cemetery
Kerry Reid

Monday Night at Sidetrack
Zac Thompson

Monday Night Farm Dinner at Lula Cafe
Peter Margasak


Moo & Oink
Mike Sula

Music Box Massacre
J.R. Jones

The Murals at the 18th Street El Stop
Brenna Ehrlich

The Newberry Library
Harold Henderson


The North Branch Trail
Jennifer Sodini

Open Mike at Gallery Cabaret
Julia Rickert

Outdanced!
Liz Armstrong

RUI: Reading Under the Influence
Kathie Bergquist


Silent Summer Film Festival
J.R. Jones

Sunday Transmission at the Hungry Brain
Peter Margasak

The Sweet Spot at the Empty Bottle
Miles Raymer

Textile Discount Outlet
Tasneem Paghdiwala


The Thorne Miniature Rooms at the Art Institute
Albert Williams

Victory Gardens Greenhouse Theater
Albert Williams

Wil Hasbrouck
Harold Henderson

The Window Seat at Letizia’s
Emerson Dameron


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