Dawson City: Frozen Time

NR, 120 minutes

Free screening for all Members + 1

This meditation on cinema’s past from director Bill Morrison (whose work was featured previously at the Ellnora Guitar Festival at the Krannert Center) pieces together the bizarre true history of a long-lost collection of 533 nitrate film prints from the early 1900s. Located just south of the Arctic Circle, Dawson City was settled in 1896 and became the center of the Canadian Gold Rush that brought 100,000 prospectors to the area. It was also the final stop for a distribution chain that sent prints and newsreels to the Yukon. The films were seldom, if ever, returned. The now-famous Dawson City Collection was uncovered in 1978 when a bulldozer working its way through a parking lot dug up a horde of film cans. Morrison draws on these permafrost-protected, rare silent films and newsreels, pairing them with archival footage, interviews, historical photographs, and an enigmatic score by Sigur Rós collaborator and composer Alex Somers. DAWSON CITY: FROZEN TIME depicts the unique history of this Canadian Gold Rush town by chronicling the life cycle of a singular film collection through its exile, burial, rediscovery, and salvation. (2017, Bill Morrison, US, 120 min, NR, DCP)

Post-show response led by Amy Powell (Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, Krannert Art Museum)

“Critic’s Pick! An instantaneously recognizable masterpiece.” -The New York Times

“Wondrous, almost indescribable. A complete astonishment from beginning to end.” – Los Angeles Times

“Critic’s Pick! An orgy for film geeks and history jonesers.” -Village Voice

“Bill Morrison’s Dawson City: Frozen Time is the best new movie in town and the best movie of the year thus far.” -Artforum

“A bona fide adventure through history, hopscotching across the turn of the 19th century.” -Film Comment

“Astonishing. A testament to the potential of art to weather and endure the ravages of time.” -Paste Magazine


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