C-U Biz-en-scène: 11.12.2010

“C-U Biz-en-scène” appears every Thursday/Friday on C-U Blogfidential to give our readers a succinct snapshot of the cinema activity in and near Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, USA. Please support the artists and their work, attend screenings and events, and otherwise become active in our esoteric little world!


Quote of the Day That May Only Mean Something to Us

“I return to the manifesto to fight the only way I know how, because I am a soldier in the culture war and art is my weapon of choice.” ~ EXISTO


We ask that you consider purchasing back issues of MICRO-FILM and C-U Confidential to help erase our outstanding print bill before we return to the printer with files for not only CUZine no.5 but our delayed special issues, C-U Confidential ’99 and MICRO-FILM 2000. You can order by using the “Donate” PayPal button here or sending cash/check/money order/cashier’s check to: Jason Pankoke, Editor, MICRO-FILM, 401 N. Prairie, Suite 3D, Champaign, IL, 61820. Documents should be made payable to “Jason Pankoke” and personal/business checks will have to sit 4-6 weeks to clear. The sale is good for MICRO-FILM issues 1-7 (do not use the old PayPal buttons if you want sale prices) and C-U Confidential issues 1-4 until further notice. For any single order: 1st copy MF, $5 ppd; 2nd copy MF, $4 ppd, 3rd copy MF, $3 ppd; 4th+ copy MF, $2 ppd each; 1st copy CUZine, $4 ppd; 2nd copy CUZine, $3 ppd, 3rd+ copy CUZine, $1 ppd each. If you have trouble figuring out a total price, simply write us at cuconfidential [at] gmail [dot] com for help. We need to nail this by the end of February 2011 or nefarious decisions will have to be made in the bowels of the Secret MICRO-FILM Headquarters. Thanks in advance for your support!


Thank goodness for relevant Facebook postings that randomly pop up in the News feed or the side column and perk the interest of CUBiz! For instance, our rockin’ friend Nate Schwalm shared a flyer for a self-described “zombie documentary” called THE INSIDE STORY which calls for lead actors, “innocent bystanders,” and the requisite undead types to report for duty on Saturday, November 13, starting at 12 p.m. in the Bridge Lounge of the Eastern Illinois University student union. Those who wish to audition for relatively clean face time (e.g., roles with lines, unless the filmmakers play against type and afford their zombies dialogue) should write tatamous1 [at] hotmail [dot] com with “Zombie” in the Subject line.

Also appearing on the FB as an “Event” that CUBiz friends are “attending,” the Champaign marketing firm Surface51 has put out a call for “a diverse group of individuals to be extras in a variety of television and video projects. No experience is necessary. Minorities, seniors, students, and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.” To be considered, send your name, phone number, e-mail, age, general availability, and a photo of yourself to Teresa Ellis at Teresa [at] surface51 [dot] com. Ellis tells CUBiz that formal auditions will be held at a future date for speaking roles and that persons on file with them will be notified before the general public about those. She also clarifies that the work varies in content and is produced for various regional non-profits, small businesses, and university-related clients.


Since we just wrote it up, we’ll simply point you right back to this Monday’s post featuring the schedule for the seventh annual Embarrass Valley Film Festival which will take place November 11-13 on the Eastern Illinois University campus in Charleston with a focus on pre-sound cinema. Of course, that brings up the nonsensical conundrum of the day – what will happen if a bunch of silent film aficionados run into an army of growling low-budget zombies? Chew on that one for a few moments.

And since we didn’t realize it was right around the corner, we’ll simply point you to the Art Theater’s Web site for detailed information about the Korean Film Festival they will host today, Friday, November 12, starting at 1 p.m. Look for hot links leading to a downloadable PDF schedule.


Danville filmmaker Mike Boedicker has announced that his project REVOLTING won the “Best Comedy Feature” award last weekend at the Illinois International Film Festival in Chicago, which also bestowed its “Best Animated Short” prize on IT’S A PENGUINFUL LIFE by Thomas Nicol and Becky Griesheimer. Hooray for central Illinois indies and congratulations to everyone! You can read through the entire list of winners on the IIFF Web site.

With today’s revelation of buzz magazine’s “Best of C-U 2010” awards, voted on by the general populace of our fair twin cities, we now know that the Art Theater has received the nod for both “Best Place to See a Movie” – was it ever in doubt? – and “Best New Business,” which technically is correct since Sanford Hess took over operating in the Art on January 1 of this year. He’s a worthy winner who has played his cards right and the movie lovers of Champaign-Urbana have responded in kind. Way to go!


Boy oh boy, must we resort to this? Well, okay, we just did. The horror/sci-fi/gaming fan press has been buzzing possibilities of this team-up for a while and, presuming it gets sealed with a kiss and a signed contract in the near future, it should prove to be more fruitful than, say, that one time when Harrison Ford touched down at Willard Airport briefly to refuel his helicopter and refuel himself at Hooters. (HAYoh!) The most-likely-occasional-at-best presence of Guillermo del Toro in the C-U would probably result in nil contact with the local filmmaking contingent and precious few public appearances – which didn’t stop one Parkland College student from pontificating how far away the director of CRONOS and BLADE II would be from his home town, Farmer City – although one imagines Exile on Main Street and G-Mart will receive token visits as goodwill and convenient stops for the man to get his pop culture fix. Your humble editor will refrain from holding his breath on anything regarding del Toro other than to say he’d rather see this big-budget filmmaker frequent MICRO-FILM County over many others. And because he knows you’ll ask, he loved THE DEVIL’S BACKBONE and highly enjoyed HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY but hasn’t seen any other del Toro unless you count SPLICE. Yes, that excludes PAN’S LABRYNTH. When you’re actively helping MFHQ rock beyond all compare and hum effortlessly like a thousand supercomputers, then you can criticize the lapses in his movie-watching logic … and only then.


@ The Art Theater, Champaign, IL: Korean Film Festival (11/12), CATFISH (11/13 on), BETTER OFF DEAD (11/13, 1 & 10 p.m.; 11/14, 1 p.m.; 11/18, 10 p.m.)

@ The Canopy Club, Urbana, IL: Pizza + Pitcher and Movie – DODGEBALL, TEAM AMERICA: WORLD POLICE, I LOVE YOU, MAN (11/14, 6 p.m.)

@ The Avon Theater, Decatur, IL: MORNING GLORY, UNSTOPPABLE, CONVICTION (11/12 on)

@ The Normal Theater, Normal, IL: SOLITARY MAN (11/11-11/14, 7 p.m.), THE PARKING LOT MOVIE (11/16-11/17, 7 p.m.)

@ The Lorraine Theatre, Hoopeston, IL: MEGAMIND (11/12 on)

@ Eastern Illinois University campus & other venues, Charleston, IL: Embarras Valley Film Festival (11/11-11/13)


@ Landmark Century Center Cinema & other venues, Chicago, IL: Reeling 29: Chicago Gay & Lesbian Film Festival (11/12-11/13)

@ Hi-Pointe Theatre/Tivoli Theatre/Webster University & other venues, St. Louis, MO: St. Louis International Film Festival (11/11-11/21)


Locally produced movies and events featuring locally produced movies are marked with an asterisk (*). Go see ‘em!


11/18: Central Illinois Film Commission meeting
@ Di Piero’s Sicilian Cucina, Springfield, IL, 7 p.m.

11/19-11/21: Dark Carnival Film Festival, Bloomington, IN

@ Landmark Tivoli Theatre, St. Louis, MO, 3:30 p.m. (@ St. Louis International Film Festival)

2/18-2/27, 2011: Big Muddy Film Festival
@ Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL

3/22-3/27, 2011: Ann Arbor Film Festival, Ann Arbor, MI

3/30-4/1, 2011: Wisconsin Film Festival, Madison, WI

4/27-5/1, 2011: Roger Ebert’s Film Festival
@ Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL


“Real Vs. Reel” Movie Series
@ Danville Public Library, Danville, IL, 6:30 p.m.

12/13: ROCKY; 1/10/11: SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS; 2/14/11: HOOSIERS; 3/14/11: A PLACE IN THE SUN; 4/11/11: THE FUGITIVE


AsiaLENS: AEMS Documentary/Film Series
@ Knight Auditorium, Spurlock Museum, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL, 7 p.m.

12/7: BURMA VJ

Global Lens 2010: International Films
@ Main Lounge, Allen Hall/Unit One, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL, 7 p.m.

11/17: ORDINARY PEOPLE, Serbia; 12/1: THE SHAFT, China; 12/8: SHIRLEY ADAMS, South Africa

Global Lens 2010: International Films
@ Latzer Hall, University YMCA, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL, 5:30 p.m.

11/11: OCEAN OF AN OLD MAN, India; 11/18: ORDINARY PEOPLE, Serbia; 12/2: THE SHAFT, China; 12/9: SHIRLEY ADAMS, South Africa

IPRH Film Series
@ Room 62, Krannert Art Museum, University of Illinois, Champaign, IL, 5:30 p.m.


Israeli Movie Club
@ The Cohen Center, University of Illinois, Champaign, IL, 7:30 p.m.


NEW! Korean Film Festival
@ The Art Theater, Champaign, IL

11/12: SPEED SCANDAL (1 p.m.), TAKE-OFF (3:20 p.m.), MARATHON (6 p.m.), 200 POUNDS BEAUTY (9 p.m.)


Every now and then, we’re surprised by the MICRO-FILM faithful in pleasant and mysterious ways. Who knew we would tune in to Urbana Public Television (UPTV) on a random Saturday night and encounter a heaping dose of public domain movie madness in the form of early Sixties monochrome Gothic Italian horror, CASTLE OF TERROR, complete with horror hosts! Of course, we planted our butts and watched to the end of this Massachusetts-made concoction, THE DUNGEON OF DR. DRECK, created by old MF friend Mike Legge whose light-hearted genre satire (BRAINDRAINER, CURTAINS) always stood out from the micro-budget pack. Creeping out East Coast cable subscribers since 2004, DR. DRECK has spawned more than 100 episodes as well as a same-named video feature released by Sub Rosa Studios. Although bargain basement by design – financially and literally, since mad scientist Dreck (Legge) and reanimated cheerleader Moana (Lorna Nogueira) host the program from the basement of their rather suburban-looking dungeon – it’s highly watchable nonsense and one of precious few entertainment programs aired by UPTV each week, usually in the wee hours when one must know to look. We’ve also observed that, excluding student shorts and endless re-runs of THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS VS. A MUMMY and PRESS START on the University of Illinois channel (UI-7), one is very hard-pressed to find original, locally made programming of an arts and entertainment stripe on UI-7, UPTV, Champaign Government Television (CGTV), or the Parkland College Television (PCTV). We have nothing against educational and good-for-our-community programming, of course, but certainly our friends and neighbors might also enjoy more regular breaks from talking heads and field reports. It might be worth one’s while to not only check local listings via the recently-launched gateway Web site, Champaign-Urbana Community Television, to find the occasional nuggets of lo-fi weirdness that only cable access can muster, but to investigate opportunities for creating and airing one’s own programs. UPTV has been very inviting to the C-U in this regard, hint hint. Why should we continually be beat to the punch by Dreck? (Sorry, Doc, we couldn’t resist. Love you, love the program! “Mwuah!” to Moana!) Get over there, out there, somewhere, and hit your television groove!

That’s it for the “business of our scene” this week!


If you have relevant news, opportunities, dates, or promotions that you would like included in CUBiz, please forward the who, what, where, when, and how much to cuconfidential [at] gmail [dot] com.

Compiled by Jason Pankoke


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“C-U Biz-en-scène” no. 16 © 2010 Jason Pankoke/C-U Blogfidential.

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