Facets Cinémathèque

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September 8–14, 2017

Chicago Premiere


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Film still: Nocturama Film still: Nocturama


"Nocturama is a mesmerizing, disturbing tour de force—and one of the best films of the year"
  —AV Club
"A disturbingly relevant snapshot of contemporary tensions"
"Sublime, stomach-churning... a tragedy of the highest order"
  —Cinema Scope
"Hypnotically unsettling... At once an oblique thriller and a cool, mesmerizing provocation"
  —Los Angeles Times
"It is at once damnable and debonair. It seduces as it repels"
  —New Yorker
"Hypnotizing, estranging"
  —Village Voice
3 stars½ "Nocturama engages critical thinking while it unassumingly works your emotions over"
4 stars "The most suspenseful film to hit town all year"
  —Chicago Reader

In this provocative terrorist thriller by French auteur Bertrand Bonello (House of Pleasures, Saint Laurent) a group of seemingly random strangers, mostly young and beautiful, gather on the Paris Metro. Leaving the train, they each disperse across the City of Light, picking up mysterious objects and depositing unmarked packages at various locations. The tone is casual, but their meticulousness attention to detail give the first half of the film a palpable sense of dread: full of movement and action, with cellphones providing the primary mode of communication as the various groups efficiently carry out their objectives. In the second half, after something terrible has happened, the same group of people are now on the run, hiding out in a luxurious Paris department store, until the store closes, as this drama eventually leads to a shocking conclusion.

In a story sadly imbued with heightened impact in the wake of actual coordinated terrorist attacks in Paris, February and November 2015, (both of which took place after filming had wrapped), Nocturama is less concerned with politics and motivation for terrorism than with the mechanics and style of rebellion, showing perpetrators who are not jihadists, but rebels born from capitalism in an era of mass redundancy and unemployment. This challenging and controversial film addresses the radicalization of 21st-century youth in a profound and unprecedented way.

Directed by Bertrand Bonello, France, 2016, 130 mins. In French with English subtitles.


  • Fri., Sept. 8 at 6:30 & 9 pm
  • Sat., Sept. 9 at 1:30, 4, 6:30 & 9 pm
  • Sun., Sept. 10 at 1, 3:30 & 6 pm
  • Tues.–Thurs., Sept. 12–14 at 6:30 & 9 pm
Buy tickets


$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