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.
FIPRESCI award London Film Fest
"This is one of the funniest black comedies in some time. Kervern and Delépine's deadpan chronicle of this largely wordless wheelchair odyssey is essentially a string of priceless sight-gags - beautifully shot in black-and-white 'Scope" -Time Out London
"A daring work, solidly made and politically incorrect...humour and form, are outstandingly enlaced." -FIPRESCI
"Shot in dreamy black-and-white, the crisply told Aaltra is mercifully free of the sermonising and sentimentality that afflict so many films involving disabled characters." -BBC
"Brilliantly deadpan...delivers plenty of hilarious cynicism and quirky charm" -Channel 4
"Delépine and De Kervern show a genius for the comic long take." -Time Out Chicago
Shot in beautiful black and white Cinemascope, Aaltra is deliciously mordant black comedy and the ultimate wheelchair road movie. Ben and Gus are neighbors in a small Belgian village, one an uptight commuter, the other a slovenly small farmer. They loathe each other, and their antagonism leads to a fight, culminating in an accident with a tractor which leaves them both paralyzed from the waist down. Rejecting the possibility of suicide or self-pity, they take a more vengeful route, heading off across Belgium in their wheelchairs with the intention of claiming compensation from the Finnish manufacturer of the tractor which injured them. Their changing relationship and their willingness to exploit and impose upon everyone they meet is bracingly refreshing and wickedly funny. Writer-Directors, Delépine and Kervern are masters of comic understatement, and their supporting cast features cameos from some well known Belgians, including Aki Kurismaki!
Directed by Benoit Delépine and Gustave Kervern, Belgium, 2004, 35mm, 94 mins. In English, Finnish, French, German and Dutch with English subtitles.