Don’t ever let the dust settle, C-U


This was a touch unexpected, yes? Maybe I really needed a brief moment of silence to fall over C-U Blogfidential for the last three weeks. There is much to mull over and fumble through that doesn’t really involve the movies of Champaign, Urbana, and the cities beyond, which impeded my attempts to write. Story ideas are plentiful, though, and we’ll simply have to see whether I can work back up to my two-posts-and-a-Calendar per week goal or if the so-called “new normal” is going to put much of our output on ice. I do plan to keep the irons hot at MFHQ Remote and will poke at you with purpose when I can put in the honest effort; intended content includes the continuation of our Michael Wiese book review series, a handful more empathic flashbacks to people, places, and photoplays that helped define our film culture du C-U, a two- or three-part sequence about Midwest indie filmmakers who influenced my perception on how movies fare in our fair Twin Cities, a C-U Confidential think-piece week in July similar to what I afforded the New Art Film Festival back in April, and several more surprises. Today is merely a check-in.

As I knead the keyboard to work my words out of it, please take care of yourselves and do some good in your world. Even small gestures add up to positive social change. You do not need to learn from me that Black Lives Matter, so I implore of you to seek out the authentic voices in all mediums that can fill you in on the highly compromised African-American experience before you act in unity with our neighbors of color. You also should have no question as to whether the COVID-19 virus is still a health threat; this Washington Post report confirms the new wave of outbreaks while this Vox article humanizes the difficulty in stopping the spread efficiently. You might also want to do the right thing with your vote and replace our 45th president and his cronies on Tuesday, November 3, with players who will make a best effort to improve our society’s well-being and economic veracity. Finally, you must try to understand that CUBlog may turn both inward and towards the bigger picture at the moment instead of locking itself into localism. It is unequivocally the editor’s choice, and either I’ve whetted your appetite or given you fair warning.

~ Jason Pankoke

p.s. The forlorn seating arrangement you see pictured above, which handily illustrates the headline and implicitly references the theatrical realm, was a fixture in the upper parking deck at the UIUC Krannert Center for the Performing Arts for years. By the time Drea Aarons and friends posed for the cover of CUZine #10 in that location, it had been removed. Our contextual loss, then.

p.s.2 Someday, I will gather up the mettle to draft a better eulogy for my father William than I did after his passing 10 years ago. I share him with you again here in the wake of Father’s Day this past Sunday, June 21, seated lakeside as he liked to be. I miss him.


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