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Thu, Dec 16 at 8:00pm


  • Dir. Wendell B. Harris Jr.
  • USA
  • 1990
  • 94 min.
  • R
  • 4K DCP
  • Assistive Listening
  • Hearing Loop

Part of Weekend Classics.

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the 1990 Sundance Film Festival — yet criminally underseen for over three decades — CHAMELEON STREET recounts the improbable but true story of Michigan con man Douglas Street, the titular “chameleon” who successfully impersonated his way up the socioeconomic ladder by posing as a magazine reporter, an Ivy League student, a respected surgeon, and a corporate lawyer. Elevated by a dexterous performance and daring direction from multi-hyphenate actor-writer-director Wendell B. Harris Jr., the film pins a lens on race, class and performance in American identity — and has lost none of its relevance. At once piercingly funny and aesthetically mischievous, CHAMELEON STREET is a “lost masterpiece of Black American cinema” (BFI), long overdue to take its rightful place in the independent film canon.

Newly restored in 4K from the original camera negative under the supervision of Wendell B. Harris Jr.

"CHAMELEON STREET is a gloriously strange one-off that deserves to be appreciated by a new generation…. A lost masterpiece of Black American cinema.” —British Film Institute (BFI)

“The film addresses issues of race, economics, sex, anger and pride in ways that are both savagely funny and poignant.” —Rolling Stone

“As a director, Harris is something of a chameleon himself, joining his incisive vision to disruptive narrative techniques borrowed from Frank Tashlin, the French New Wave, and sitcoms.” —The New Yorker

“Ferociously original, mordantly funny” —LA Weekly

“I’d never seen a film like it.” —Steven Soderbergh

The Belcourt Theatre does not provide advisories about subject matter or potential triggering content, as sensitivities vary from person to person.

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See the Official Website