Oakton Community College’s 5th annual Pop-Up Film Festival, programmed and hosted by Chicago filmmaker, film critic and professor Michael Glover Smith, will show new movies to the public and students for free on 3 afternoons between November 27th – November 30th, 2018. The festival, sponsored by the Oakton Community College’s Educational Foundation, includes three independent feature films and three short films screening at the Footlik Theater 1600 E. Golf Road, Des Plaines, with cast members and filmmakers participating in the post-film discussions.
1) Opening on Tuesday, November 27th at 2:00 pm is MADELINE’S MADELINE, a New York-set film starring 20-year-old rising star Helena Howard. The film follows teenager Madeline who participates in an acting workshop where she is asked to mine her tumultuous personal life as raw material for a play. An official selection of the Sundance and Berlin International Film Festivals, director Josephine Decker’s intense psychodrama is an indescribable, innovative masterpiece that has been acclaimed as “one of the freshest and most exciting films of the 21st century” by Indiewire.
Helena Howard will be in attendance, with a Q&A moderated by Oakton’s English professor/writer Tina Fakhrid-Deen.
2) The second screening, Wednesday, November 28th at 12:30 pm will be the experimental documentary, FUTURE LANGUAGE: THE DIMENSIONS OF VON LMO, which chronicles the life of Von LMO, a musician and self-proclaimed alien-hybrid who was part of the late ‘70s New York No Wave music scene. Between trips to his home planet Strazar, Von has spent some very real time in prison and on the streets of Earth. Challenged with translating his Future Language for audiences across the galaxy, Lori, our filmmaker and Von LMO fan, gets sucked into Von’s orbit and finds herself lost in his story.
Director Lori Felker will be attending, and the Q&A moderator will be Oakton’s Art Educator and actress Shannon Sloan-Spic.
3) On Thursday, November 29th at 2:00 pm, Pop-Up Film Festival Host Michael Glover Smith will present the Midwest premiere of his latest feature, RENDEZVOUS IN CHICAGO, an hour-long tongue-in-cheek comedic feature film comprised of three vignettes that correspond to the beginning, middle and end stages of a relationship. Shot on 8 days with a budget of just $20,000 in Hyde Park and Rogers Park, the episodes follow 3 sets of couples.
In The Brothers Karamazov, an intriguing game of “strip guessing” ensues when a man tried to pick up a Dostoevsky scholar in a bar. Betting that he hasn’t really read the magnum opus, she challenges him to name the brothers. He ends up bare-assed, she leaves smirking, but the game has only just begun.
Cats and Dogs features 2 partners on a walk through their neighborhood, oohing and ahing over canines they meet being walked by their owners and cats they spot in windows. One partner in this stereotypically gay duo seeks to convince his lover that cats make the best pets; the other is fonder of dogs, and points out how much the owners resemble them. They negotiate a compromise of sorts, and plight their troth as well.
The sociopathic weirdo woman in The End is the Beginning comes home to find her lover in bed with another woman. She attacks him with bakery goods, heaps him with invective, and throws him and all his belongings out the window. After ranting for a while, she tries to sing and dance her way into the next venture in serial monogamy, apparently launching this come-on to an “empty chair”.
At times sarcastic, at times sweet, at times offering us caricatures rather than characters, RENDEZVOUS IN CHICAGO features talented actors demonstrating funny, clever and intriguing points of view; it was an official selection of the 2018 Adirondack Film Festival in New York where it won second place in the Audience Choice Awards.
According to Glover Smith, “The goal of the Pop-Up Film Festival is to shine a light on vital new voices in the microbudget independent film scene. A lot of independent American films follow formulas and feel just like Hollywood films but without the budgets and stars. We’re not interested in any of that. We show work that’s exciting and challenging. We want to expand the audience’s definition of what an independent film can be. We also bring cast and crew members from the films to do talkbacks after every screening. The Q&A sessions are always lively.”
All screenings FREE at The Footlik Theater, 1600 E. Golf Road, Des Plaines, with cast members and filmmakers participating in the post-film discussions.