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.
with producer Alicia Sams
U.S. Theatrical Premiere
Critics' Pick! "Cheers to Ms. Jacobson for keeping alive the memory of New York nightlife's golden era, and a man who embodied it" -New York Times
½ "Wonderful...a well-deserved toast to a quintessential New Yorker of the post-World War II era" -New York Post
"Affectionate... a fun, loving ride" -New York Magazine
"A nostalgic, meticulously researched full course meal...brimming with memorable quips and stories" -Variety
"Fascinating... You see Toots, and you wish you had been there" -Roger Ebert
½ -Chicago Tribune
Recommended! "A sweet celebration of a saloon that helped define an era in Manhattan nightlife" -NewCity Chicago
Toots transports us back to a New York City most of us only know from black-and-white photographs-a place where the saloonkeeper was king and regular folks hobnobbed with actors and sports stars. Toots Shor is the saloonkeeper in question, and from 1940 to 1959 his eponymous midtown Manhattan bar was the place to be seen. Decades later, his granddaughter Kristi Jacobson takes us on tour of her famous grandfather's world through interviews with family, friends, patrons including Walter Cronkite, and some choice archival footage. Born in turn-of-the-century Philadelphia, Shor made his way to New York in 1930, and started out as a bouncer at various speakeasies. Some years after the repeal of Prohibition, he made good on his connections and opened his own place. Shor's jocularity and innate sense of populism turned his saloon into a phenomenon, and on any given night the average working stiff might find himself drinking next to Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren, mobster Frank Costello, ballplayer Joe DiMaggio, or singer Frank Sinatra, among many others. But Shor was as bad with business as he was good with people. After selling his bar for $1.5 million in 1959, he blew through his entire bankroll before reopening at a new location in 1961. Unfortunately, Shor could not keep up with the changing times, and the radical 1960's spelled the death of his establishment's popularity. Jacobson paints a personal portrait of her grandfather, using the glamorous energy of the time to bring him back to life as the celebrity he once was.
Directed by Kristi Jacobson, U.S.A., 2006, 35mm, 85 mins.
Cinechat: Producer Alicia Sams will be here for a Q&A. after the 7 pm & 9 pm screenings on Sunday, Oct. 19.