Chicago Critics Film Festival
8 - Thursday 15 May 2014
David Wain, Bobcat Goldthwait, Martin Starr, Jocelyn DeBoer, David Dastmalchian, Jordan Vogt-Roberts and Dick Miller among those scheduled to attend.
Created by the Chicago Film Critics Association in 2013, the festival offers a selection of films comprised of recent festival favorites and as-yet-undistributed works from a wide variety of filmmakers. The CCFF is the only current example of a major film critics group hosting its own festival. The festival lineup features works from around the globe and offers viewers an eclectic blend of raunchy comedy, introspective drama and mind-blowing fantasy.
Learn more about the Chicago Critics Film Festival by visiting: chicagocriticsfilmfestival.com.
Friday, May 9th
- 7:00pm: They Came Together
- 9:30pm: Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon
- 11:59pm: Housebound
Saturday, May 10th
- 1:50pm: Chicago Critics Film Festival Shorts Program 1
- 3:45pm: Copenhagen
- 7:45pm: Calvary
- 9:45pm: Dead Snow: Red vs. Dead
- 11:59pm: The Congress
Sunday, May 11th
- 2:45pm: 10,000 KM
- 5:00pm: The Overnighters
- 7:00pm: That Guy Dick MillerA Bucket of Blood
- 10:30pm: Mood Indigo
Monday, May 12th
- 5:00pm: Chicago Critics Film Festival Shorts Program 2
- 7:00pm: I Origins
- 9:30pm: Frequencies
Tuesday, May 13th
- 5:00pm: Private Violence
- 7:00pm: Nick Offerman: American Ham
- 9:35pm: Starred Up
Wednesday, May 14th
- 5:00pm: Mystery Road
- 7:30pm: Willow Creek
- 9:45pm: El Critico
Thursday, May 15th
- 4:45pm: I Put A Hit On You
- 6:30pm: Obvious Child
- 8:30pm: Animals
FILM PASS PRICES
$150 = Full Festival Pass + Closing Night Party (May 9-15)
$100 = Weekend Pass (Fri-Sun – May 9-11)
$75 = Weekday Pass + Closing Night Party (Mon-Thurs – May 12-15)
INDIVIDUAL TICKET PRICES:
Tickets and Passes are now on sale!
- Fri 9 May, 7:00pm
They Came Together (2014)
directed by David Wain starring Paul Rudd, Amy Poehler, Cobie Smulders
From the director of Wet Hot American Summer, Wanderlust and Role Models comes a hilarious and irreverent subversion of the romantic comedy genre.
When Joel (Rudd) and Molly (Poehler) meet, it’s hate at first sight: his big Corporate Candy Company threatens to shut down her quirky indie candy shop. Plus, Joel is hung up on his sexy ex. But amazingly, they fall in love, until they break up about two thirds of the way through, and Molly starts dating her accountant. But then right at the end…well you’ll just have to see (Hint: Joel makes a big speech and they get back together).
- Fri 9 May, 9:30pm
Supermensch: The Legend of Shep Gordon (2014)
directed by Mike Myers
In his directorial debut, Mike Myers documents the astounding career of Hollywood insider, the loveable Shep Gordon, who fell into music management by chance after moving to LA straight out of college, and befriending Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix. Shep managed rock stars such as Pink Floyd, Luther Vandross, Teddy Pendergrass and Alice Cooper, and later went on to manage chefs such as Emeril Lagasse, ushering in the era of celebrity chefs on television. Stuffed with fantastic archive footage the film traces Shep’s transformation from the 1970’s hedonist to today’s practicing Buddhist yearning for a family of his own.
- Fri 9 May, midnight
directed by Gerard Johnstone starring Morgana O'Reilly, Rima Te Wiata, Glen-Paul Waru
Kylie Bucknell is forced to return to the house she grew up in when the court places her on home detention. Her punishment is made all the more unbearable by the fact she has to live there with her mother Miriam – a well-intentioned blabbermouth who’s convinced that the house is haunted. Kylie dismisses Miriam’s superstitions as nothing more than a distraction from a life occupied by boiled vegetables & small-town gossip. However, when she too becomes privy to unsettling whispers & strange bumps in the night, she begins to wonder whether she’s inherited her overactive imagination, or if the house is in fact possessed by a hostile spirit who’s not particularly thrilled about her return.
- Sat 10 May, 1:50pm
Chicago Critics Film Festival Shorts Program 1 (2014)
Begins with Cruising Electric, the shortest film ever to be accepted at Sundance. Dog Food tells the story of a butcher who loses his dog. In Butter Lamp, a young photographer and his assistant take photos of Tibetan nomads aginst diverse and more or less exotic backgrounds. In Seawolf, Alison experiences loneliness, joy and fear as she travels to different worlds through magical boxes. In Godka Cirka – Hole In the Sky, a young shepherdess knows that the day that will change her life forever is about to come. In the animated Yearbook, a man spends 17 years trying to compile the definitive history of human existence before the planet blows up. The Lion’s Mouth Opens, a powerful documentary about a woman confronting her risk of Huntington’s Disease. Finally, Choreography shows how donkeys respond to brief encounters of filmmakers who watch and listen to them.
- Sat 10 May, 3:45pm
Winner of the Audience Award at this year’s Slamdance Film Festival, this film follows immature adult William who, while on a trip through Europe to visit his father’s birthplace, meets the much younger but startlingly mature Effy. As the two search for his grandfather, William finds himself increasingly taken with Effy as he finds himself confronting both his family’s tortured past and the promise of an unexpected future.
- Sat 10 May, 7:45pm
directed by John Michael McDonagh starring Brendan Gleeson, Chris O'Dowd, Kelly Reilly
Father James (Brendan Gleeson) is a good priest who is faced with sinister and troubling circumstances brought about by a mysterious member of his parish. Although he continues to comfort his own fragile daughter (Kelly Reilly) and reach out to help members of his church with their various scurrilous moral – and often comic – problems, he feels sinister and troubling forces closing in, and begins to wonder if he will have the courage to face his own personal Calvary.
- Sat 10 May, 9:45pm
Dead Snow: Red vs. Dead (2014)
directed by Tommy Wirkola starring Vegar Hoel, Orjan Gamst, Martin Starr, Jocelyn DeBoer
Martin Starr and Jocelyn DeBoer scheduled to attend
If the worst day of your life consisted of accidentally killing your girlfriend with an axe, chain-sawing your own arm off, and watching in horror as your closest friends were devoured by a zombified Nazi battalion, you’d have to assume that things couldn’t get much worse. In Martin’s case, that was only the beginning.
- Sat 10 May, midnight
The Congress (2013)
directed by Ari Folman starring Robin Wright, Harvey Keitel, Jon Hamm
Ari Folman, the director of the Oscar-nominated “Waltz with Bashir,” returns with a live-action/animation hybrid inspired by the book by Polish author Stanislaw Lem. An aging actress named Robin Wright (played, coincidentally, by Robin Wright) allows a digital likeness of herself to be created so that she can continue her career without worrying about the ravages of time, an agreement that is thrown into question years later when her electronic alter-ego becomes a superstar.
- Sun 11 May, 2:45pm
10,000 KM (2014)
directed by Carlos Marques-Marcet starring Natalia Tena, David Verdaguer with English subtitles
Alexandra and Sergi make love in their tiny Barcelona apartment. They’ve decided to have a baby, but find their plans dashed when Alex receives an offer for an artistic residency in Los Angeles. Understanding this may be Alex’s last chance to re-launch her photography career, the couple decides to put their plans on hold for a year. One year apart, with a continent between them, Alex and Sergi must rely on virtual communication to keep the flame of their relationship alive. But with their realities no longer shared and the touch of one another gone, the technology that has supposedly brought the world closer together may just tear them apart.
- Sun 11 May, 5:00pm
The Overnighters (2014)
directed by Jesse Moss
Broken, desperate men chase their dreams and run from their demons in the North Dakota oil fields. A local Pastor risks everything to help them.
- Sun 11 May, 7:00pm
That Guy Dick Miller (2014)
directed by Elijah Drenner starring Dick Miller
Dick Miller scheduled to attend
Dick Miller is the last of the great American character actors. Whether sharing the screen with Nicholson, De Niro, Schwarzenegger or The Ramones, Dick has been stealing scenes since his screen debut in 1955. He has worked with some of the great directors: Scorsese, Corman, Fuller, Dante, Cameron, Demme and more. Every moviegoer knows his face, but few know his name and even fewer know his story; an aspiring writer turned accidental actor. For the first time, Dick Miller has allowed filmmakers incredible access to his life and home for this funny and unexpected story. Joining him are the directors, producers, co-stars and friends who have helped make him Hollywood’s leading “that guy.”
A Bucket of Blood
directed by Roger Corman starring Dick Miller, Barboura Morris, Antony Carbone
Will screen as part of a double feature after That Guy Dick Miller.
A frustrated and talentless artist finds acclaim for a plaster covered dead cat that is mistaken as a skillful statuette. Soon the desire for more praise leads to an increasingly deadly series of works.
- Sun 11 May, 10:30pm
directed by Michel Gondry starring Romain Duris, Audrey Tautou, Gad Elmaleh
Visionary filmmaker Michel Gondry presents this trippy romantic fantasy in which Colin (Romain Durais), a rich young bachelor and inventor of the pianocktail–yes, a piano that whips up cocktails based on the mood of the music that it is playing–whose unexpected romance with his dream girl (Audrey Tautou) is thrown into turmoil when she is stricken with a mysterious disease that has left her with a flower growing in her lungs. Nominated for three Cesar awards, this also features appearances from popular French actors Gad Elmaleh and Omar Sy.
- Mon 12 May, 5:00pm
Chicago Critics Film Festival Shorts Program 2 (2014)
In Peepers, a New York couple’s perfect lives are disrupted when they discover they are being watched through their apartment window. I’m a Mitzvah features a fish-out-of-water in Mexico who must bring his deceased friend back to America. Crime Stories: The Series is a gritty animated documentary of real life accounts of street life and crime. The Cut tells the story of a father and a daughter, whose relationship fluctuates between proximity and detachment, at the moment of a haircut. Notes On Blindness is a cinematic documentary excavating the interior world of blindness. Finally, Londoners documents modern day London as you have never seen before.
- Mon 12 May, 7:00pm
I Origins (2014)
directed by Mike Cahill starring Michael Pitt, Brit Marling, Astrid Bergès-Frisbey
A molecular biologist and his laboratory partner uncover evidence that may fundamentally change society as we know it.
- Mon 12 May, 9:30pm
directed by Darren Paul Fisher starring Daniel Fraser, Eleanor Wyld, Dylan Llewellyn
Set in a world that is strangely familiar, just plain strange and where people are grouped by “frequency”–high-frequency types are incredibly successful and lucky while those with low-frequency are anything but–the super-low Isaac will do anything to be with the ultra-high Marie and in doing so kicks off a chain of events that could change things forever.
- Tue 13 May, 5:00pm
Private Violence (2014)
directed by Cynthia Hill
One in four women experience violence in their homes. Have you ever asked, “Why doesn’t she just leave?” Private Violence shatters the brutality of our logic and intimately reveals the stories of two women: Deanna Walters, who transforms from victim to survivor, and Kit Gruelle, who advocates for justice.
- Tue 13 May, 7:00pm
Nick Offerman: American Ham (2014)
directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts starring Nick Offerman
Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts scheduled to attend
This live taping of Nick Offerman’s one-man show at New York’s historic Town Hall theatre features a collection of anecdotes, songs, and woodworking/oral sex techniques. The routine includes Offerman’s 10 tips for living a more prosperous life, so hearken well. Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts (The Kings of Summer) returns to the CCFF for the second year in a row. WARNING: MINOR NUDITY AND NOT SUITABLE FOR VEGETARIANS.
- Tue 13 May, 9:35pm
Starred Up (2014)
directed by David Mackenzie starring Jack O'Connell, Rupert Friend, Ben Mendelsohn
19-year-old Eric (Jack O’Connell, star of the upcoming UNBROKEN), arrogant and ultra-violent, is prematurely transferred to the same adult prison facility as his estranged father (Ben Mendelsohn, THE DARK KNIGHT RISES). As his explosive temper quickly finds him enemies in both prison authorities and fellow inmates — and his already volatile relationship with his father is pushed past breaking point — Eric is approached by a volunteer psychotherapist (Rupert Friend, “Homeland”), who runs an anger management group for prisoners. Torn between gang politics, prison corruption, and a glimmer of something better, Eric finds himself in a fight for his own life, unsure if his own father is there to protect him or join in punishing him. Written by prison system therapist Jonathan Asser, Starred Up is a merciless, uncompromising portrayal of a dehumanizing life behind bars, and the most accomplished film of David Mackenzie’s career; as father and son, Mendelsohn and O’Connell give extraordinary performances, charting a path that resembles Greek tragedy.
- Wed 14 May, 5:00pm
Mystery Road (2013)
directed by Ivan Sen starring Aaron Pedersen, Hugo Weaving, Ryan Kwanten
An Australian-based mystery with western overtones, this is the gritty story of an aborigine detective (Aaron Pedersen) who returns to his remote home town after a decade in the city and investigates the murder of a local girl that finds him at odds with both the local white-dominated police (including Hugo Weaving) and his former friends and family.
- Wed 14 May, 7:30pm
Willow Creek (2013)
directed by Bobcat Goldthwait starring Alexie Gilmore, Bryce Johnson
Director Bobcat Goldthwait scheduled to attend
Comedian-turned filmmaker Bobcat Goldthwait (“Shakes the Clown,” “God Bless America”) returns with this horror entry about a would-be Bigfoot expert (Bryce Johnson) who, along with his girlfriend (Alexie Gilmore), gets lost while on a camping trip in Sasquatch’s alleged neighborhood and finds that there is something else out there with them.
- Wed 14 May, 9:45pm
El Critico (2014)
directed by Hernán Gerschuny starring Rafael Spregelburd, Dolores Fonzi, Blanca Lewin with English subtitles
Tellez is a strict and prestigious film critic, totally weary of Hollywood romantic comedies and certain that the best of the seventh art died long time ago. Maybe because of its work, suffers from what he calls the ‘maladie du cinema’: He sees the world like if it was a big movie that, in addition, he cannot keep from criticizing. While searching for his new apartment, he unexpectedly meets Sofia, a young and attractive woman that has very little to do with his good taste. ‘Elemental, constructed on a basis of cliches’ he would describe her. Movements of random bring them together over and over again, in strangely idyllic situations. Tellez attempts to escape from a staging that he loathes, but suspects that the movie genre that he hates the most is taking its revenge.
- Thu 15 May, 4:45pm
I Put A Hit On You (2014)
directed by Dane Clark, Linsey Stewart starring Aaron Ashmore, Sara Canning
After her marriage proposal to Ray (Aaron Ashmore) is awkwardly rejected, Harper (Sara Canning) gets really drunk and in an attempt to blow off some steam, posts an ad online offering to trade her engagement ring for Ray’s death. The thing is, someone replies. And they sound serious. Fearful of what she might have done, Harper runs to Ray’s apartment in the middle of the night to warn him. At first Ray takes the situation lightly; it’s just some nut job online messing with her. But as the night goes on and a mysterious white van stalks Ray’s apartment, suddenly everything becomes more real. As they try to stay calm and deal with this bizarre situation like regular people, they’re forced to confront the downfall of their relationship and figure out where it all went wrong before the hitman takes away any chance of them getting back together.
- Thu 15 May, 6:30pm
directed by Gillian Robespierre starring Jenny Slate, Jake Lacy, Gaby Hoffman
This initially raunchy and ultimately tender comedy, tells the story of aspiring comedian Donna Stern, everyday life as a female twenty-something provides ample material for her incredibly relatable brand of humor. On stage, Donna is unapologetically herself, joking about topics as intimate as her sex life and as crude as her day-old underwear. But when Donna gets dumped, loses her job, and finds herself pregnant just in time for Valentine’s Day, she has to navigate the murky waters of independent adulthood for the first time. Writer-director Gilliam Robespierre expanded her 2009 short into one of the most popular entries at this year’s Sundance Film Festival
- Thu 15 May, 8:30pm
directed by Collin Schiffli starring David Dastmalchian, Kim Shaw, John Heard
Star/writer David Dastmalchian and director Collin Schiffli scheduled to attend
Animals tells the story of Bobbie and Jude, a young couple living in their broken-down car parked alongside Chicago’s Lincoln Park Zoo. Their days are a continuous ritual of theft and scoring until they must confront the difficult truth of their relationship after one of them is hospitalized.