The International House Philadelphia is a not–so–hidden gem on Penn’s campus. Known as the region's center for artistic, cultural, educational, and residential activities, the International House runs the renowned cinema program, the Lightbox Film Center. 

Lightbox Film Center was first known as The Neighborhood Film/Video Project in 1979. It aided in broadening local access to the emerging work of independent filmmakers and connecting with the cinephiles of Philadelphia around social, cultural and political issues. While most of us aren’t familiar with nonfiction, experimental, and/or international cinema, Lightbox is a great place to venture out of our movie bubbles and explore.

Skipping Cinemark for Lightbox may seem daunting at first, so here's a quick heads–up on some upcoming screenings.

This Friday:

On 1/26 at 7:00 PM, Lighthouse will be playing The Great Silence by Sergio Corbucci. If you like spaghetti westerns about bounty hunters and outlaws, you should definitely check out this film that blurs the lines of good and bad. 

Next Wednesday:

On 1/31 at 7:00 PM, Lighthouse will be playing Blood of Jesus by Spencer Williams. Williams’s race film was created during the heyday of black independent cinema in the early 20th century. This religious drama gets set into motion when the protagonist is accidentally shot by their lover. 

Next Thursday:

On 2/1 at 7:00 PM, Lightbox will be playing Desert Hearts by Donna Deitch. This film is set in the late 1950s, a time when queerness was violently opposed. Known as the first film to present a positive portrayal of lesbian sexuality, Desert Hearts offers a narrative that still feels relevant in 2018. 

Next Friday:

On 2/2 at 7:00 PM, Lightbox will be playing He Walked By Night/Open Secret by Alfred L. Werker. Werker’s semi–documentary, film noir style adds to the drama of the protagonist’s inner turmoil, as he goes on a crime spree after returning from combat in World War II. 

If you happen to have some free time, make sure to explore a theater screening some of the most interesting, unheard of films right on 3701 Chestnut Street. 


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