Calendar: Oct. 27-Nov. 2, 2023

Our movie and media Calendar appears every Friday/Saturday on C-U Blogfidential and caters to the downstate region anchored by Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, USA.


MILESTONES | Happy Birthday to You!

11/1: Amy Lynn Best (co-owner, Happy Cloud Media, LLC, Pittsburgh, PA)


FIELD REPORT DU HQ | From Wherever It May Be Said

Many of you are in the swing of Halloween and it’s unfortunate, coming out of our recent lag in coverage of all the movie things du C-U, that we’ve missed chances aplenty to plug our film fright events up until now. But, we’re still a few days away from the 31st and enjoyment of the spooky kind doesn’t really evaporate at the first light of All Saints Day, so we can point you towards a few cracks and crevices that you could investigate on top of what still lies in wait on the Calendar dates listed below. Bwa ha ha.

To that end, we’ve decided to highlight our online friends in this report who are dancing with the spirit(s) of the season and we’ll hopefully stitch together a bonus post or two in the next week to pin down the tail end of our terrifying non/theatrical treats for October. Chase & Shep have been running like bosses over the last two months as most of their Monday night livecasts have been spent with horror storytellers working in our region like Ash Hamilton, John Isberg, Ben Harl, and Joshua Brucker. They also unleashed the annual C&S horror comedy, THE EXORCISM OF CHASE & SHEP, back on Friday, October 13, wherein the duo fall victim to the dark powers of their recurring nemesis, El Libro de Los Muertos, and it takes the efforts of their landlord (Tyler Ellis), a trio of late-night priests on the sketchy side (Ryan Phillips, Liam Schaver, and Hamilton), and a divine intervention to save their asses if not also their souls. Already, EXORCISM has spawned black-and-white as well as narrated editions up on YouTube.

Dave Rediger, who plays Chase & Shep’s rather confused neighbor in EXORCISM, continues to co-host the “Saturday Morning” skit program from Camp Nostalgic Studios™ with collaborator and musician Alex Duquette; in the most recent episode posted on October 7, “Who is the Most Responsible Witch?”, the duo attempts to answer the question by toiling over the trouble caused by many a familiar pop culture conjurer despite their best intentions. Camp Nostalgic also released a limited animation short for the season called UNDERGROUND; conceived of and illustrated by Gela Rediger with sound design by Duquette, it dramatizes what happens when a woman wakes up in subterranean surroundings a little too late for her own good. The group also records live music, comedy, and other events as displayed on YouTube and is branching out to work with businesses and creatives in east central Illinois.

On a cheekier note, our chap Andy Due of Rubber Chicken Films in Charleston recently debuted a new edition of THE ANY DUE SHOW in which the fetching Esmeralda (Zoe Due) attempts to convince Quasimodo (Mr. Due in a Lon Chaney, Sr., guise) to leave his tower and visit the village below but, of course, the hunchback has his caveats; Due continues mining the tropes of silent and Golden Age Hollywood as well as classic television and Anglophile media for comedy in an effort that always rings sincere. On a weirder note, our man Shea Kelly of A Thousand Yard Stare Productions in Decatur is deep into the second season of FILMWAR!, an hour-long vidcast in which the show’s recurring contestants do their best to out-guess each other in film trivia while ducking the cutting remarks of host Kelly; dropping today, October 27, is the annual Halloween “Filmwar Manor” episode while the previous outing from October 13, “Waves,” is a virtual out-of-body game show experience that is horror themed. Points!

Those who would like to listen and learn about film can thank our pals Matt and Ashley of Mashley at the Movies for carving out 13 days in their uploading schedule to discuss cinema for the season; recent episodes of the review podcast have taken on genre favorites like THE EXORCIST, ZOMBIE, and AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON as well as lower-profile fare like THE DEVIL RIDES OUT, STAGE FRIGHT, ALICE SWEET ALICE, and the topic of their October 28 entry, REC. Another Mashley viewing choice for their series, THE TOXIC AVENGER, is also the subject of a preview clip released by Jesse Seitz of Capricorn Rising from her upcoming documentary MONSTER GIRLS; in the segment, which was first unveiled before a screening of the AVENGER remake at Fantastic Fest in Austin, veteran makeup effects creator Jennifer Aspinall talks about her early work on the Troma Entertainment touchstone and trots out a rare keepsake from the shoot. Illinois-based Seitz is currently in post-production on GIRLS.

All that should keep you busy for a bit, dearest ghouls and goblins. The compromise for assembling this gateway to online horror goodies is that we don’t have time to preview the theatrical premiere of a new found footage thriller, THE WOODMEN, directed by Watseka resident Brucker for Gray Sky Pictures and Horror Dadz Productions. It is taking place tonight and tomorrow night at the Little Lorraine storefront theater of Hoopeston. The fearful festivities begin at 7 p.m. both evenings if you can make it, and their previous cryptid adventure MOTHMAN is available for viewing on Tubi and other sites.

p.s. Coincidentally, the Almanac repeat below recalls HOOPESTON, the curious documentary about small-town America’s resistance to pagan ritualists that has been AWOL for several years now. Hrm.


CONFIDENTIAL ALMANAC | Dates in Film Culture History

15 Years AgoThursday, October 30, 2008: HOOPESTON, a documentary created by Thomas Bender and Jacob Bakkila of the New York “art collective” Synydyne, receives its Midwest debut during the 15th annual Chicago Underground Film Festival at the Viaduct Theater in Chicago. Central to its story is the opening of a brick-and-mortar “Witch School in Hoopeston, IL, due to lower costs of living, and how the relatively Christian citizens accommodate their new Wiccan neighbors. Various individuals from the town as well as Witch School co-founders Ed Hubbard and Don Lewis talk about misunderstandings and controversies, underscored by a melancholy that is emblematic to American small towns past their economic prime. Distinctive in its maize-and-sky blue location photography as well as an evocative “retro” score by Todd Mazierski, HOOPESTON played a handful of public dates before receiving a brief on-line release and fading from sight. The Witch School would be relocated to nearby Rossville, back to Chicago, and finally to Salem, MA, before reverting to a Web-only presence; several branches practice the “Correllian Nativist Tradition” worldwide, including a central “mother temple” in Danville. Synydyne’s interests took a right turn into transmedia territory and alternate reality games (ARGs) with the tourism campaign, “This is My Milwaukee,” the automated poetry generator “@Horse_ebooks,” the comically dry “Pronunciation Book” videos, and the corporate adventure scenario “Bear Stearns Bravo” in quick succession, attracting many thousands of avid followers and inspiring numerous theories about their veracity and meaning. As reported on 4/5/08, 10/29/08, 3/08/10 at CUBlog. [R]


LOCAL FILMS & EVENTS | Support Your Media Storytellers

@ Lincoln Square Mall, Urbana, IL
University Library, UIUC, etc., present the C-U Small Press Fest 2023 (10/28, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.) Information

@ The Lincoln Square Theatre, Decatur, IL
FIELDS OF GOLD* exclusive run (documentary) (11/1-11/3, 7 p.m.)


NOW PLAYING | Champaign-Urbana Area

@ AMC Champaign 13, Champaign, IL
AFTER DEATH (religious docudrama), DICKS: THE MUSICAL, FIVE NIGHTS AT FREDDY’S, FREELANCE, INSPECTOR SUN (animation), MARTIN LUTHER KING (in Telugu with English sub), WORLD’S GREATEST DAD (in Mandarin with English sub), THE EXORCIST: BELIEVER, KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON, LEO: BLOODY SWEET (in Tamil/Hindu with English sub), PAW PATROL: THE MIGHTY MOVIE (animation), SAW X, UNDER THE LIGHT (in Mandarin with English sub) (10/27 on), TAYLOR SWIFT: THE ERAS TOUR (concert film) (10/27-10/29, 10/31, 11/2), Studio Ghibli Fest: SPIRITED AWAY (10/28, 3 p.m., 10/31, 7:30 p.m., in Japanese with English sub; 10/29, 4 & 7 p.m., 10/30, 7 p.m., 11/1, 7 p.m., English dub), TERRIFIER 2 (11/1-11/2, 7 p.m.), WHAT HAPPENS LATER (11/2 on)

@ Phoenix Savoy 16 + IMAX, Savoy, IL
AFTER DEATH (religious docudrama), DICKS: THE MUSICAL, FIVE NIGHTS AT FREDDY’S, FREELANCE, THE BLIND (faith film), THE CREATOR, THE EXORCIST: BELIEVER, KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON, THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS 30th anniversary (re-release) (animation), THE NUN II, PAW PATROL: THE MIGHTY MOVIE (animation), SAW X (10/27 on), TAYLOR SWIFT: THE ERAS TOUR (concert film) (10/27-10/29, 10/31, 11/2), DUMB MONEY (10/27-11/2, 9 p.m.), Studio Ghibli Fest: SPIRITED AWAY (10/28, 3 p.m., 10/31, 7:30 p.m., in Japanese with English sub; 10/29, 4 & 7 p.m., 10/30, 7 p.m., 11/1, 7 p.m., English dub), MIRACLE IN EAST TEXAS (10/29, 4 & 7 p.m.; 10/30, 7 p.m.), THE SHINING (10/29, 10/31, 3 & 7 p.m.; 11/1, 7 p.m.), GODZILLA 2000 (11/1, 7 p.m.), FREE (religious documentary) (11/2, 7 p.m.), PRISCILLA (11/2 on)

@ Illini Union, UIUC, Urbana, IL
Illini Union Board presents “Fall 2023 Weekend Films” feat. INSIDIOUS: THE RED DOOR, Pine Lounge, 1st floor (10/27-10/28, 7 p.m.; free w/i-card)

@ Redbox (streaming), Champaign-Urbana, IL

@ Spurlock Museum for World Cultures, UIUC, Urbana, IL
NAZARBAND screening w/filmmaker Suman Mukhopadhyay (10/27, 7 p.m., free), THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI w/discussion (10/31, 4:30 p.m., free)

@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL
No movies this week!

Events featuring locally produced movies are marked with an asterisk (*). Additional “Now Playing” and “Coming Soon” listings appear after the jump!


NOW PLAYING | The Cities Beyond

@ The Avon Theater, Decatur, IL
FREELANCE, THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS 30th anniversary (animation), KILLERS OF THE FLOWER MOON (10/27-10/29), THE ROCKY HORROR PICURE SHOW w/shadow cast (10/28, midnight)

@ The Fischer Theatre, Danville, IL
COCO (animation) (10/27, 7 p.m.)

@ The Harvest Moon Twin Drive-in, Gibson City, IL
HALLOWEEN (1978) (Screen 1), TAYLOR SWIFT: THE ERAS TOUR (concert film) (Screen 2) (10/26), HOCUS POCUS 30th anniversary, THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS 30th anniversary (animation) (Screen 1), TAYLOR SWIFT: THE ERAS TOUR (concert film) (Screen 2) (10/27-10/29)

@ The Little Lorraine, Hoopeston, IL
THE WOODMEN* world premiere w/filmmakers (10/27-10/28, 7 p.m.)

@ The Normal Theater, Normal, IL
THE ROCKY HORROR PICURE SHOW w/shadow cast (10/27-10/28, 7 & 10:30 p.m.), THE ADDAMS FAMILY (1991), BEETLEJUICE (10/29), HOCUS POCUS (10/30), GHOSTBUSTERS (1984) (10/31)

@ The Onarga Theatre, Onarga, IL
Closed for business until November.

@ The Princess Theatre, Leroy, IL
MY BIG FAT GREEK WEDDING 3 (10/27-10/29)

@ The Route 66 Drive-in Theater, Springfield, IL
FIVE NIGHTS AT FREDDY’S, THE EXORCIST: BELIEVER (10/27-10/28), FIVE NIGHT’S AT FREDDY’S (10/29, 11/2) (Screen 1), TAYLOR SWIFT: THE ERAS TOUR (concert film) (10/27-10/29, 11/2) (Screen 2)



For detailed and curated listings of Chicago-area film presentations and related events, please visit the fine folks at Cine-File and subscribe to their definitive “Cine-List” weekly blast.


COMING SOON | Area-wide Events

22nd Route 66 Film Festival, Springfield, IL (virtual)

32nd Whitaker St Louis International Film Festival, St. Louis, MO

AFTERLIFE* documentary world premiere
@ The Avon Theatre, Decatur, IL, 7 p.m.

Krampusnacht Freeky Film Festival*
@ Phoenix Savoy 16 + IMAX, Savoy, IL

CU International Film Festival*
@ Spurlock Museum of World Cultures, UIUC, Urbana, IL

24th Roger Ebert’s Film Festival*
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL


COMMUNITY & CAMPUS SERIES | Champaign-Urbana area

Illini Radio Group presents “Rewind 92.5 Movie Series”/“Mix 94.5 Throwback Thursdays”*
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL, 7 p.m.

Illinois Public Media presents “The Arthouse Experience Film Series”
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL, 7 p.m.

Illini Union Board presents “Fall 2023 Weekend Films”
@ Pine Lounge, 1st floor, Illini Union, UIUC, Urbana, IL, 7 p.m. Fri. & Sat, free w/i-card
11/3-11/4: GRAN TURISMO; 11/10-11/11: STRAYS: 11/17-11/18: BLUE BEETLE; 12/1-12/2: THE EQUALIZER 3

The News-Gazette Film Series
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL, 1 & 7 p.m.


Compiled by Jason Pankoke.


“Calendar du C-U”
© 2023 Jason Pankoke/C-U Blogfidential

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