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February 19–25, 2016

Chicago Premiere

Rolling Papers

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Film still: Rolling Papers Film still: Rolling Papers
Special Jury Prize
Independent Film Fest
of Boston
"The film's not just for potheads. It proves a compelling examination of the state of print journalism"
  —Village Voice
3 stars
  —Slant Magazine
"Rolling Papers has its own unique perspective on how Colorado's adjusted to the new normal"
  —AV Club
3 stars
  —Chicago Sun-Times
  —NewCity Chicago

When legalized marijuana sales began in Colorado in 2014, more than just political controversies got lit. In today's media, the status quo can flip so abruptly that news outlets are forced to reshape themselves.

On January 1, 2014 as recreational marijuana explodes off the shelves of Colorado dispensaries, The Denver Post is telling the story. The Cannabist is the first pot section of a major newspaper and Ricardo Baca, the world's first marijuana editor sets out to report history in the making with a team of straight-laced staff writers and offbeat freelancers, including a "high" mommy blogger. Policy news, strain reviews, parenting advice and edible recipes are the new norm on a new beat: pot journalism. Baca had to keep the novelty alive while attracting and retaining a new readership, signaling an official alliance between a financially declining yet highbrow cultural institution and an anti-establishment counter-culture, both of which were now fixed on profits.

With more states moving to legalize marijuana and polls showing a majority of Americans in favor of legal pot, the Colorado experiment may not herald a revival of traditional media, but it could be a harbinger of an increasingly permissive American culture.

Directed by Mitch Dickman, 2014, U.S.A. 79 mins. In English and Spanish with English subtitles.


  • Fri., Feb. 19 at 7 & 9 pm
  • Sat., Feb. 20 at 3, 5, 7 & 9 pm
  • Sun., Feb. 21 at 5 & 7 pm
  • Mon.–Thurs., Feb. 22–25 at 7 & 9 pm
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$10 general admission

$5 for Facets Members

The Facets Cinémathèque is located at 1517 W. Fullerton Ave. in Chicago. Call the Cinémathèque Hotline at 773.281.4114 for the latest schedule, showtimes and updates.

For all Cinémathèque inquiries, contact Charles Coleman at 773.281.9075 or

  • John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
  • Artworks: National Endowment for the Arts
  • Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences
  • Comer Family Foundation
  • Bloomberg Philanthropies
  • Alphawood Foundation
  • Polk Bros. Foundation