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Bonnie 'Prince' Billy hosts 'Ladies' Night' at Cinefamily tonight

January 7, 2010 |  3:23 pm

Bearded folk troubadour and sometimes-actor Bonnie “Prince” Billy may not be the first person you think of when you hear the phrase “Ladies' Night” – we always start humming Kool & the Gang or we hear those tireless club commercials that aired endlessly on Chicago radio in our youth  -- but alas, Cinefamily will present his hand-picked double feature of films that explore the mystique of the feminine gender.

For those who don't know, Bonnie "Prince" Billy (one of the many nom de plumes, if you will, of Will Oldham) got his first big break in John Sayles' 1987 film "Matewan." More recently, he's appeared in Kelly Reichardt's pensive road films, "Old Joy" and "Wendy and Lucy," where his naturalistic but charismatic acting style fits right in.

On the Cinefamily bill for tonight: “A Woman’s Secret,” a 1949 soapy noir with Maureen O’Hara (check out the scene above, ripe with lots of gusty outbursts) and Wim Wenders’ “Alice in the Cities,” the story of a German journalist (Rüdiger Vogler) helping an abandoned girl (Yella Rottländer) find her grandmother's house with no more clues than a photograph of the front door. Based on an idea from Wenders' longtime collaborator Peter Handke, the Austrian avant-garde novelist, the film also features a score from Irmin Schmidt and Michael Karoli, one half of krautrock minimalists Can.

FYI: The Prince will be there but not performing a live set. 

--Margaret Wappler

Cinefamily, 611 N. Fairfax Ave. $12. 8 p.m. (323)655-2510.