The Facets Cinémathèque is located at 1517 W. Fullerton Ave. in Chicago. For more information on films playing in the Cinémathèque, please call 773-281-4114. To order advance tickets online, visit the TicketWeb website by clicking here.
Chicago Theatrical Premiere
"Tilda Swinton doesn't merely act the title role...she devours it... [Erick] Zonca tips his hat to the entire John Cassavetes oeuvre while crafting a messy, nervy, and frequently exhilarating thriller" -Village Voice
"There are few film actresses working today who can embrace the extremes of beauty and ugliness as persuasively as Tilda Swinton, and fewer still, I suspect, who have the guts to try. She's a magnificent, bold, sometimes viscerally uncomfortable screen presence" -New York Times
"Like Zonca's earlier success, Julia follows its own unsteady rhythm, careening from comedy to suspense to pathos... Swinton's manic performance, which starts out tough to watch, then becomes gripping" -Onion AV Club
"As the film drives to its conclusion, the director's risky tightrope walk between observation, black comedy and thrills starts to pay greater and greater dividends... finally, it's the slow burn of Swinton's idiosyncratic but engrossing interpretation of this unlikely heroine that holds the movie together and provides an end result that is both affecting and teasingly different" -TimeOut London
"[Swinton] is disturbingly dead-on... the actress spares us nothing" -Chicago Tribune
"One doozy of a great thriller. And the acting here is as good as it gets" -Roger Ebert
Recommended! "Fascinating" -NewCity Chicago
Erick Zonca (The Dreamlife of Angels) directs his first English language feature with Julia, eponymously portrayed by Academy Award winner Tilda Swinton (Michael Clayton), 40, who is a manipulative alcoholic as well as a compulsive liar. Between shots of vodka and all strung out from one-night stands, Julia gets by on nickel-and-dime jobs, and is increasingly lonely -- the only consideration she receives comes from her friend Mitch (Saul Rubinek, The Contender), who tries to help her. After waking in a car with an unknown man and messing things up badly at work, Mitch fires her and drags her to AA meetings. While she has no interest in sobriety, Julia does encounter Elena (Kate del Castillo), a mentally unbalanced mother with a plan. When Elena finds Julia out cold on the sidewalk, she rescues her, waits for her to wake, and then enlists her in a plot to kidnap Elena's son Tommy (Adian Gould) from his wealthy grandfather. After several failed rendezvous, the child is re-kidnapped by Mexican thugs. Director Erick Zonca imbues the film with an ever-growing sense of dread, which when combined with Swinton's powerhouse performance, makes Julia a truly thrilling trip to the dark side of the human psyche.
Directed by Erick Zonca, France/U.S.A./Mexico/Belgium, 2008, 35mm, 144 mins. In English and Spanish with English subtitles