Friday, January 17, 2014

Chicago Film Fiesta is ready to rock in February


Chicago Talkies is pleased to present Chicago Film Fiesta, a premiere independent film screening event run by filmmakers. We are kickstarting our 2014 season with an amazing independent film WILD BLUE from writer-director Josh Hope and produced by Olive Entertainment.

Check out their weblinks for more details :



SAVE THE DATE. We will be screening on 8th February 2014. 

Tickets are available at : http://chicagofilmfiesta.eventbrite.com

RSVP on Facebook and check who else is attending :
https://www.facebook.com/events/565823676841846/?source=1

About WILD BLUE :
After spending his entire life in the Oklahoma foster care system, a young man travels across the country with a strange woman on a whim after his release from the state.

Written and Directed by : Josh Hope
Produced by : Caitlin Laingen, Christopher Hong & Josh Hope

Cast : Devin Archer, Maya Boudreau, Kurt Conroyd, Kate Froehlich, Debbie DiVerde, Brenda-Marie Whitehead, Bruce Spielbauer, Tommy Beardmore & Bill Redding

Nominee for Best Orignal Screenplay:
Beverly Hills Film Festival
Gotham Screen Film Festival
Woods Hole Film Festival
Scriptapalooza Screenplay Contest
Chicago Screenwriter's Network
Write Movies Screenplay Contest

Story Pros International Screenplay Contest

For more details on Chicago Film Fiesta, visit us at : www.facebook.com/chicagofilmfiesta 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS started principal photography on 16th December 2013.

We are pleased to announce that we started principal photography for our feature film project IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS on 16th December 2013. We will continue with the next schedule right after the holidays.




Please visit our page on Facebook to stay tuned on the progress.

https://www.facebook.com/ItsTheLittleThingsMovie 

Check out the working stills on the following link :

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.665604483484079.1073741829.645640998813761&type=1&l=24b4f28c00 

Friday, December 13, 2013

IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS to start principal photography on 16th December

We have been talking about our upcoming feature film project titled IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS for quite some time now. We are now gearing up to start our first day of principal photography on 16th December 2013. The remaining schedule is spread over several weekends in the next few months.

If you haven't done yet, please visit our Facebook page now and click LIKE while you are there to stay posted on the progress.




Thursday, December 5, 2013

CHICAGO FILM FIESTA is back in action


Chicago Talkies is pleased to present to you CHICAGO FILM FIESTA, a premier independent film screening event run by filmmakers.

CHICAGO FILM FIESTA ( formerly known as SHOrT IN CHICAGO FILM FIESTA ) was launched in January 2013 as a short films program. It was held for two consecutive months in January and February of 2013 and screened a total of 9 short films made in Chicago.  

CHICAGO FILM FIESTA is back in action with a change in name and format. It is no longer confined to short films or ones made in Chicago. It will now showcase independent content of all lengths and genre.

Visit us on Facebook at  www.facebook.com/chicagofilmfiesta to catch up on upcoming screenings.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Announcing IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS : A romantic comedy

We have been extremely busy past few months trying to get a few projects off the ground. As anyone can appreciate that it is not easy for an independent filmmaker, especially in Chicago, to be able to kickstart a project easily. There are the usual roadblocks and then there are the unexpected ones.

We are pleased to formally announce our upcoming feature film IT'S THE LITTLE THINGS. This is a romantic comedy about a young married couple with the typical issues in day to day life which are so petty and laughable in nature but yet they make or break the relationship.

Ben and Kate are professional actors who knew each other from childhood and marrying each other was a very easy decision to make. They thought they knew each other quite well. But to their surprise, they discover a different person in each other once they start their married life.

The story is about how they deal with their issues. It also involves the role of family and friends who do everything in their control to make this couple stick together. Overall, it will be a family friendly and fun to watch film.

You can visit us at : http://www.facebook.com/ItsTheLittleThingsMovie and hit LIKE to stay updated on how far we have come with filming and our release schedule.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

'THE OTHER ONE' - Chicago Independent Movie - Press Release


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Crisis of School Violence Tackled by New Film and Social Action Collaboration

Chicago, August 27, 2013 

The pressure is palpable in the new movie trailer for Eclipse, which focuses the lens on what does belong in school- happy, safe children- and what should never be present in schools: violence.  A prequel to the upcoming indie feature The Other Onefrom Producer Grace McPhillips, this short narrative film was also created to support the social action campaign tied to the film's “Declare Non-Violence Videos” (DNVs). 

Writer/Director Joe Steiff and Eclipse Editor Graham Metzger create a surreal school setting, idyllic and all too familiar.  "These acts of violence have happened with such frequency," said Metzger, "and as a father, you believe the schools your kids attend are safe, but as we've seen, violence isn't picky." 

Recently the film and DNV campaign were featured in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s News Digest, and McPhillips has been approached by children's health organizations about showing Eclipse to prompt what can be a difficult discussion.  “This is exactly what we were hoping for, and we're thrilled to prove that narrative storytelling can intrigue audiences AND promote causes just as well as documentaries,” says McPhillips. 

In partnership with activist organizations Cure Violence, Build Chicago, and UCAN, the first batch of DNVs were released at Youtube.com/TheOtherOneMovie last week, featuring student actors from the film projects.  Producers Grace McPhillips and Elizabeth Theiss filmed additional interviews with youth from the partner organizations all month and are actively inviting you to Declare Your World Non-Violent at the project's website, TheOtherOneMovie.com

While films that tackle social issues in documentary style have wide access to grant funding, narrative filmmakers with the same goal find their options limited.  In a bold and grassroots fashion, the makers of The Other One are currently in the midst of their final fundraising campaign, having raised $30k of their $75k budget entirely through individual donors giving tax-deductible donations on the crowd-funding platform Indiegogo.  The Other One will tour the festival circuit this winter, but Eclipseis set for a FREE online release on December 14th 2013, the one-year anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy.  Steiff stated, "This film is in remembrance of those affected by the violence, and in hope that we can find a way to end it." 

The Eclipse Trailer can be found at http://sterlingrockproductions.com/blog/eclipse

Tax Deductible Contributions for this film can be made at http://igg.me/at/the-other-one
 
Partnering Organization Websites:
 
More details can be found at: 
http://TheOtherOneMovie.com 
Contact: Elizabeth Theiss, Producer 
Sterling Rock Productions 
773-790-4959 
liz@sterlingrockproductions.com 
SterlingRockProductions.com 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Watchable Supernatural Films


Following up on my previous posts on this subject, I did get time during the week to watch Chris Rock in DOWN TO EARTH and Ricky Gervais in GHOST TOWN.

One word for both the films...GOOD STUFF. They both had the feel good tone which I first experienced in GHOST and then in JUST LIKE HEAVEN. I did skip OVER HER DEAD BODY after the trailer gave me the idea that I am not watching anything good to hold my interest for more than an hour. I will also skip GHOST OF GIRLFRIENDS PAST for the same reason, although I recollect watching parts of it while it was being shown on television sometime back.

I found TRULY MADLY DEEPLY and HEARTS AND SOUL on Youtube. I couldn't sit through TMD after few minutes..a very amateurish handling of the subject..but HEARTS AND SOUL was really good..Robert Downey Jr. looked amazing.

THE FRIGHTENERS is the only one which was on Netflix. It was enjoyable for first few minutes and then it got weird and boring. Lots of animation and special effects spoiled a what could have been good film into a lousy one.

So here is my  final list of watchable supernatural films :

GHOST 
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0099653/combined

JUST LIKE HEAVEN 
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0425123/combined

DOWN TO EARTH 
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0231775/combined

GHOST TOWN 
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0995039/combined

HEARTS AND SOUL 
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0107091/combined

BEETLEJUICE 
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0094721/combined

THE FRIGHTENERS 
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0116365/combined

If you know of any other films which are similar to the ones above, feel free to let me know and I will watch, review and add to my list.

You can watch my film THE LAST HUG by visiting our VIMEO channel.
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2044877/combined

http://www.vimeo.com/chicagotalkies/thelasthug


Sunday, August 11, 2013

'Supernatural' need not be scary or creepy.


I spent most of yesterday and today watching some of the popular movies from the supernatural genre. Few from the list I posted yesterday and few from the ones I found today.

I knew all this while that supernatural need not necessarily mean horror based. I for myself made two short films (THE LAST HUG and CTRL+LIFE+DELETE) which fall broadly under this genre but were remotely connected to horror. There exists a sub genre under supernatural which I would like to call 'meaningful' or 'message-based'.

Dead people are not scary. Its just a concept in the minds of most writers and given that it is fiction that they are presenting to us, no body is really trying to prove them wrong.

Fortunately enough I did come across the softer side of supernatural, starting with GHOST (1990) starring Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore.

This one really moved me. The fight between the good and the evil. I was impressed by how the bad guys were shown not joining Sam when dead but rather being taken away by the dark spirits.

I also watched THE SIXTH SENSE (1999) and STIR OF ECHOES (1999) along with BEETLEJUICE (1988). I used to be a big fan of Geena Davis but watching her performance in BEETLEJUICE left me with a bad taste. I am not even going to talk about the film as it was a pain to watch.

THE SIXTH SENSE and STIR OF ECHOES failed to impress too. Every film is out there trying to convince you that all dead people are injured and bleeding and trying to live in your house.

I decided not to watch any more horror based movies as they all seem to be using a common template. I am surprised to learn that THE SIXTH SENSE made lots of money for its producers. Even the recent ones like INSIDIOUS and THE CONJURING types are making big money even though made on very low budgets. I am sure there are people out there who want to see such movies being heaped on them time and again with no fresh ideas or treatment.

I did some more research and found movies like GHOST such as JUST LIKE HEAVEN (2005) starring Reese Witherspoon and Mark Ruffalo. I was almost loosing interest in the first 10-15 minutes but still kept watching because I like both Reese and Mark, and then the story got interesting and unique. In the end, I was glad that I watched it completely. 

I am yet to watch GHOST TOWN starring Ricky Gervais, OVER HER DEAD BODY starring Eva Longoria and  DOWN TO EARTH starring Chris Rock and few others. There are lot of movies from yesterdays list that I could not find on Netflix or in my neighborhood video store and again there is a limit of how many of these I can watch in a day :)

To call the day off, I would say that I am glad that movies like GHOST and JUST LIKE HEAVEN got made and I enjoyed them throughly. I wish more and more such stories are picturized. Well, I am definitely going to make another one myself soon enough.

My films can be viewed by going to the FILMOGRAPHY tab on this site. Till next time I have some reviews, goodbye.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

I see dead people

'I see dead people'...the infamous line from THE SIXTH SENSE. Do you remember the little kid talking to Bruce Willis about his unusual abilities ?

We came across this compilation while doing a research on movies revolving around the protagonist living with or talking with people who are already dead. We also know about MEDIUM on NBC/CBS with a similar concept.

How many of these films have you seen and enjoyed so far ? Do you know of any film that could be added to this list ? Do you think some of these could be taken off ?

We are toying with an idea with a similar plot but with a distinct treatment. The list is arranged year-wise and the summaries are from IMDB.com

Looking forward to some meaningful discussion. You can leave your comments here or on our Facebook page www.facebook.com/chicagotalkies 


1
1937
TOPPER
Madcap couple George and Marion Kerby are killed in an automobile accident. They return as ghosts to try and liven up the regimented lifestyle of their friend, bank president Cosmo Topper. When Topper starts to live it up, it strains relations with his stuffy wife.
2
1987
HELLO AGAIN
Lucy Chadman (Shelley Long) chokes to death and is resurrected by her loopy sister Zelda (Judith Ivey) on the one year anniversary of her death. Lucy, of course, does not believe she has actually been dead and thinks it is an elaborate hoax until she goes to her apartment and discovers her husband (Corbin Bernsen) married to her gold digging best friend, Kim (Sela Ward). Meanwhile, Lucy becomes a medical phenomenon and starts dating her hot doctor, Kevin (Gabriel Byrne). Kim, meanwhile, becomes jealous of all the attention that Lucy is garnering, especially from her husband and claims that Lucy faked her death in order to gain attention. Lucy, along with Zelda and Kim's stepson Junior (Austin Pendleton) plot to get Kim to tell the truth and regain Lucy's stature back in society.
3
1988
BEETLEJUICE
After Barbara and Adam Maitland were killed in a car crash, they find themselves trapped as ghosts in their beautiful New England farmhouse. Their peace is disrupted when a yuppie family, the Deetzs, buy their house. The Maitlands are too nice and harmless as ghosts and all their efforts to scare the Deetzs away were unsuccessful. They eventually turn to another ghost 'Beetlejuice' for help.
4
1990
GHOST DAD
Elliot Hopper is a widower with three children, he is currently working on a deal. It seems like his wife illness was very costly and this deal could put them out of the red. However he gets into a cab that is driven by a maniac, and Elliot crashes and the next thing he knows he is floating around and finds himself in the lab of a scientist who studies paranormal. Elliot asks the scientist to send him back so that he could finish the deal and make sure that his children are taken cared of.
5
1990
GHOST
Sam and Molly are a very happy couple and deeply in love. Walking back to their new apartment after a night out at the theatre, they encounter a thief in a dark alley, and Sam is murdered. He finds himself trapped as a ghost and realises that his death was no accident. He must warn Molly about the danger that she is in. But as a ghost he can not be seen or heard by the living, and so he tries to communicate with Molly through Oda Mae Brown, a psychic who didn't even realise that her powers were real.
6
1990
TRULY, MADLY, DEEPLY
Nina is totally heartbroken at the death of her boyfriend Jamie, but is even more unprepared for his return as a ghost. At first it's almost as good as it used to be - hey, even the rats that infested her house have disappeared. But Jamie starts bringing ghostly friends home and behaving more and more oddly.
7
1996
THE FRIGHTENERS
After a car accident in which his wife, Debra, was killed and he was injured, Frank Bannister develops psychic abilities allowing him to see, hear, and communicate with ghosts. After losing his wife, he then gave up his job as an architect, letting his unfinished "dream house" sit incomplete for years, and put these skills to use by befriending a few ghosts and getting them to haunt houses in the area to drum up work for his ghostbusting business; Then Frank proceeds to "exorcise" the houses for a fee. But when he discovers that an entity resembling the Grim Reaper is killing people, marking numbers on their forehead beforehand, Frank tries to help the people whom the Reaper is after!
8
1999
THE SIXTH SENSE        
Child psychologist Malcom Crowe is one night visited by an ex-patient named Vincent, angry, enraged. He wounds Crowe, then kills himself. A few months later, Crowe is visited by a 9-year old boy named Cole. He sees dead people who do not know they are dead. Because of this, he is called a freak in school. Crowe, at first thinks he is seeing things, but after spending a lot of time with Cole (much to his wife's dismay), he discovers Cole may be seeing dead people after all.
9
1999
STIR OF ECHOES
Tom's a regular guy, a utilities lineman, married, with a young son, his wife is pregnant; he hangs out with long-time pals in a Chicago neighborhood. At a party, his sister-in-law hypnotizes him, and he goes into a deep trance. Before waking him, she suggests that he keep his mind open. That night he sees flashes of violence and the ghost of a young woman. His young son, too, is "a receiver," but while the boy is calm and coherent in his conversations with spirits, Tom is confused and agitated. Over time, the young woman's story comes to the surface, and Tom begins a hunt for her body that puts him and his usually understanding wife, Maggie, in grave danger.
10
2000
FREQUENCY
A rare atmospheric phenomenon allows a New York City firefighter to communicate with his son 30 years in the future via short-wave radio. The son uses this opportunity to warn the father of his impending death in a warehouse fire, and manages to save his life. However, what he does not realize is that changing history has triggered a new set of tragic events, including the murder of his mother. The two men must now work together, 30 years apart, to find the murderer before he strikes so that they can change history--again.
11
1983
DEAD ZONE
Teacher Johnny Smith gets in a horrible accident which forces him into a coma for five years. Once Johnny wakes up, he discovers he has the ability to read a person's life just by making physical contact with them. When the local police find out about Johnny's "powers", they bring him in on a murder case. Soon Johnny's abilities gets him into more trouble then he may be able to handle.
12
2002
DEAD ZONE
Johnny Smith had the perfect life. Until he was in coma for six years. When he awoke, he found his fiance married to another man. His son doesn't know who he is. Everything's changed. Including Johnny. One touch, he can see things. Things that have happened. Things that will happen. You should see what he sees.
13
2005
WHITE NOISE
The pregnant wife of the architect Jonathan Rivers is missed after a car accident near a cliff, and the police do not know whether she is dead or abducted. Some weeks later, a mysterious man comes to Jonathan and tells him that his wife is dead and had communicated with him through Electronic Voice Phenomena. Sooner Jonathan is informed by the police that her body was found in the sea near a harbor, and the tormented grieving Jonathan decides to try to contact her using uncontrolled E.V.P and jeopardizing his own life.