Block Cinema: Block Museum - Northwestern University
Skip to main content

Block Cinema

Block Auditorium

Block Cinema is dedicated to encounter, exchange, and learning through the art of the moving image.

The Block Museum is home to one of the region’s most innovative cinemas. Through its quarterly screening series “Block Cinema,” the museum explores the global past and present, showcasing film and other time-based media across genres, from classic to experimental.

This free, in-house cinema is dedicated to providing Northwestern, the North Shore, and Chicago a quality venue for film and to highlighting the diversity of voices and practices in the media arts field. Post-screening discussions with a filmmaker or scholar, are a staple of the program, providing a unique opportunity for audiences to gain valuable context about the works and offering unique insights into the creative process. In keeping with the Museum’s commitment to presenting art across time, culture, and media, media art is a staple of the Block Museum’s exhibition program.

Always free and open to all

Upcoming Screenings

Feb97 PM

RESIDUE (2020) with filmmaker Merawi Gerima

Merawi Gerima's debut feature film RESIDUE is a lyrical ode to Black life and community in the face of gentrification.
Feb107 PM

X: THE MAN WITH THE X-RAY EYES (1963) on 35mm

Roger Corman’s visionary sci-fi classic about a scientist who develops eyedrops that allows him to see beyond the spectrum of visible light, presented on 35mm with an introduction by Dr. Catherine Belling.
Feb157 PM

Shamanic Cinema: Trance as Resistance with Colectivo Los Ingrávidos

Six short films by the Mexican independent artist group Colectivo Los Ingrávidos followed by a conversation with one of the artists.
Feb177 PM


An essential yet underseen work of Latin American political cinema from Colombian documentary filmmakers Marta Rodriguez and Jorge Silva.
Feb181 PM

Science on Screen: FIRST MAN (2018)

Damien Chazelle’s meticulously-realized film FIRST MAN follows astronaut Neil Armstrong (Ryan Gosling) on the trajectory to the 1969 moon landing. Introduction by Jordan Bimm, historian of science at the University of Chicago’s Institute on the Formation of Knowledge.
Feb237 PM


Marta Rodriguéz & Jorge Silva's documentary on the "drama about pesticides and the aberrant working conditions of female labor” in Bogotá.
Feb246 PM

DRY GROUND BURNING (2022) with filmmaker Joana Pimenta

DRY GROUND BURNING (2022) is a visionary hybrid of documentary and science-fiction centered on a group of outlaw women who dares to pirate, refine, and distribute petrol in the favelas of Bolsonaro’s Brazil. Q&A with co-director Joana Pimenta.
Mar17 PM

FOG LINE (1970) and HORIZONS (1973) with filmmaker Larry Gottheim

An evening of elemental cinema with celebrated American avant-garde filmmaker Larry Gottheim.
Mar26:30 PM


Two brightly-hued films, GIUSEPPINA and THE UMBRELLAS OF CHERBOURG, presented in 16mm & 35mm offer glimpses of the optimistic image that oil companies sought to project in the 50s & 60s. Conversation between Professor Brian Jacobson and Ph.D. student in Screen Cultures Kylie Walters.
Mar37 PM

ONE IMAGE, TWO ACTS (2020) with filmmaker Sanaz Sohrabi

Filmmaker Sanaz Sohrabi draws on the photographic archives of British Petroleum to examine the visual and social history of oil production Shown along with A FIRE (1961) by Ebrahim Golestan. Q&A with the director and Prof. Mona Damluji.
Mar95 PM

BEING BEBE (2021) with BeBe Zahara Benet & filmmaker Emily Branham

A remarkable film tracing the journey of Cameroonian-American artist and drag performer Marshall Ngwa AKA BeBe Zahara Benet, the inaugural winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race. Marshall Ngwa AKA BeBe Zahara Benet and filmmaker Emily Branham (NU alum) in conversation with E. Patrick Johnson.
Mar107 PM

Working, Weaving, Filming

A selection of 16mm and digital short films by Naomi Uman & Laura Huertas Millán that use nonfiction practices expansively to portray people's daily labors with particular attention to the work of image-making.
"We’re very conscious of the valuable role that university cinemas like ours can play in the ecosystem of non-theatrical film. We look for opportunities to support and showcase the work of distributors who are expanding access to adventurous cinema, archives that are preserving endangered cinematic legacies and scholars and filmmakers who are promoting a more inclusive film culture.
We try to act as a conduit between that international community of passionate cinema workers, and diverse local communities at Northwestern and beyond, who see cinema as a way to encounter the world and exchange ideas."

– Michael Metzger, Pick-Laudati Curator of Media Arts, Block Museum



Explore conversations and stories from past Block Cinema programs