Calendar: Mar. 29-Apr. 4, 2024

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.

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MILESTONES | Happy Birthday to You!

4/2: Will “the Thrill” Viharo (movie columnist, Bachelor Pad Magazine, Champaign, IL)
4/4: Kamelya Alexan (filmmaker, CHANGING THE DISCIPLE, Chicago, IL)
4/4: Sara Benson (adjunct assistant professor, School of Information Sciences, UIUC, Champaign, IL)

 

FIELD REPORT DU HQ | From Wherever It May Be Said

For today’s Report, we’re shelving the numerous topics we had considered talking about this week so we can focus on a happening du C-U that we think will be worth your time and attentions. Ye Ed recently got back in touch with Nat Dykeman, an indie film connoisseur with whom he’d first crossed paths nearly 20 years ago, and learned in confidence of his plans to bring his brand of cinema programming to our area. We’re humbled that Dykeman is willing to offer this gesture to our community and believe the return of specialized public screenings meant to expand the depth of what “movie-going” can entail for the folks of Champaign, Urbana, and the immediate cities beyond is long overdue. Let’s discuss the plan thus far…

Having relocated from the Chicago suburbs to small-town living not far from our fair Twin Cities, Dykeman already has his hands full in film. He is the founder, organizer, and promoter of the Lake County Film Festival, held up north in suburban Grayslake since 2004, which is currently accepting entries to consider for its 14th showcase in October and November of this year. (An early-bird deadline of Friday, April 26, is approaching like a comet; don’t let it pass you by, screen storytellers!) He has also tried his hand at producing films, running a video store, and other related and creative activities over the years as detailed by UIUC professor emeritus Richard Leskosky in this nifty profile run a week ago in the News-Gazette.

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At present, Dykeman wants to test the waters in Champaign County and has pulled together a three-show run under the “Chambana Film Festival” umbrella at the Phoenix Savoy 16 + IMAX in Savoy. The following titles will play on the last Sunday afternoon of each of the next three months with the series kicking off this weekend: QWERTY (2012; March 31, 4 p.m.), a romance between outsiders in the Windy City, played by Dana Pupkin and Eric Hailey, which eventually involves a Scrabble competition; TRAPPED BALLOON (2022, April 28, 4 p.m.), a bittersweet drama about a former teacher (Touko Miura), her estranged father (Kaoru Kobayashi), and a solitary fisherman (Masahiro Higashide) who gradually transform from their interactions on a Japanese isle; and, BIKE VESSEL (2023, May 26, 4 p.m.), a documentary about the inadequacy of health care for Black men in America and one individual, Donnie Seals, Sr., who turned his life and wellness around after multiple significant surgeries and despite the odds. The respective directors are Bill Sebastian, Hiroyuki Miyagawa, and Eric D. Seals. Participants from all the films – Dykeman was a producer on QWERTY, FYI – will be invited to the screenings.

Depending on how “Chambana” is received by, well, Chambana, the promoter has additional concepts including an expansion to a full-on event a la Lake County in early 2025. To be fair and honest, and not to discount the great efforts made by everyone who has continued or revived the touchstones of our modern film culture like last month’s Insect Fear Film Festival, next month’s 25th anniversary Roger Ebert’s Film Festival, and a proper Pens to Lens outpouring down the road a short way, part of what has been missing in the C-U is new blood to drive good ideas. We wish Dykeman all the best in channeling his experience and knowledge in our environs while trusting our dearest viewers to take the plunge and participate.

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LOCAL FILMS & EVENTS | Support Your Media Storytellers

HUNTING FOR THE HAG* streaming release: Tuesday, April 2, via Lion Heart Distribution, Santa Monica, CA/Into the Night Motion Pictures, Normal, IL

@ Golden Corral, Springfield, IL
Central Illinois Film Commission* meeting (4/4, 6 p.m. dinner, 7 p.m. meeting)

@ Phoenix Savoy 16 + IMAX, Savoy, IL
Chambana Film Festival presents QWERTY (3/31, 4 p.m., free admission)

 

NOW PLAYING | Champaign-Urbana Area

@ AMC Champaign 13, Champaign, IL
A CAT’S LIFE, CREW (in Hindi with English sub), GODZILLA X KONG: THE NEW EMPIRE, IN THE LAND OF SAINTS AND SINNERS, TILLU SQUARE (in Telugu with English Sub), ARTHUR THE KING, DUNE: PART TWO, GHOSTBUSTERS: FROZEN EMPIRE, IMAGINARY, IMMACULATE, KUNG FU PANDA 4 (animation), LATE NIGHT WITH THE DEVIL, LUCA* (animation) (first US release) (3/29 on), CABRINI (faith film), LOVE LIES BLEEDING (3/29-4/1), SOMEONE LIKE YOU (4/2 on), THE FIRST OMEN, MONKEY MAN, WICKED LITTLE LETTERS (4/4 on) *single screenings daily

@ Phoenix Savoy 16 + IMAX, Savoy, IL
GODZILLA X KONG: THE NEW EMPIRE, ARTHUR THE KING, CABRINI (faith film), DUNE: PART TWO, GHOSTBUSTERS: FROZEN EMPIRE, IMAGINARY, IMMACULATE, KUNG FU PANDA 4 (animation), LOVE LIES BLEEDING, LUCA* (animation) (first US release), ONE LIFE (3/29 on), PRIDE & PREJUDICE (2005) (3/31, 3 & 7 p.m.; 4/3, 7 p.m.), THE ARK AND THE DARKNESS (religious documentary) (4/1, 7 p.m.), SOMEONE LIKE YOU (4/2 on), THE FIRST OMEN, MONKEY MAN (4/4 on) *single screenings daily

@ Illini Union, UIUC, Urbana, IL
Illini Union Board presents “Spring 2024 Weekend Films” feat. THE COLOR PURPLE (2023), Pine Lounge, 1st floor (3/29-3/30, 7 p.m.; free w/i-card)

@ Redbox (streaming), Champaign-Urbana, IL
Follow the link to view the hottest new releases! (3/26 on) Online rentals

@ Spurlock Museum of World Cultures, UIUC, Urbana, IL
UI Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center and Slavic Languages & Literature present 20 DAYS IN MARIUPOL documentary screening and discussion (4/1, 5:30 p.m.), Roger Ebert Center for Film Studies presents PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE screening (feat. AFTER PARTY* short film) curated by Ebert Fellows (4/4, 7 p.m.)

@ 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!

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NOW PLAYING | The Cities Beyond

@ The Avon Theater, Decatur, IL
GODZILLA X KONG: THE NEW EMPIRE, KUNG FU PANDA 4 (animation) (3/28-3/30) (Closed 3/31)

@ The Fischer Theatre, Danville, IL
THE COLOR PURPLE (2023) (3/29, 7 p.m.)

@ The Harvest Moon Twin Drive-in, Gibson City, IL
GHOSTBUSTERS: FROZEN EMPIRE, KUNG FU PANDA 4 (animation) (Screen 1), GODZILLA X KONG: THE NEW EMPIRE (Screen 2) (3/29-3/30)

@ The Normal Theater, Normal, IL
THE UNTOUCHABLES (3/29), THE THING (1982) (3/29-3/30), ENNIO (documentary) (3/30), FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE (3/30), THE BIRD WITH THE CRYSTAL PLUMAGE (3/31), “Way Beyond Samba” series w/discussion feat. NEIGHBORING SOUND (4/4, 7 p.m.)

@ The Onarga Theatre, Onarga, IL
GHOSTBUSTERS: FROZEN EMPIRE (3/29-3/31)

@ The Princess Theatre, Leroy, IL
DUNE: PART TWO (3/28-3/30) (Closed 3/31)

 

NOW PLAYING | Midwest

@ The Gene Siskel Film Center, SAIC, etc., Chicago, IL
Chicago Filmmakers presents the 34th Onion City Experimental Film Festival (4/4-4/14)

@ UW Cinematheque, etc., Madison, WI
UW-Madison Dept. of Communication Arts presents the 26th annual Wisconsin Film Festival (4/4-4/11)

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

4/5
“Friday Forum” feat. Prof. Jay Rosenstein about IN WHOSE HONOR?
@ University YMCA, UIUC, Urbana, IL, 12 p.m.

NEW! 4/15
Champaign Movie Makers* mixer
@ The Esquire Lounge, Champaign, IL, 7 p.m.

4/17-4/20
24th Roger Ebert’s Film Festival* (25th anniversary edition)
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL

4/25-4/28
2nd annual Foxtail Film Festival*
@ Normal Theater, etc., Normal, IL

4/26
UIUC Student Film Festival*
@ Spurlock Museum for World Cultures, UIUC, Urbana, IL, 7 p.m.

8/31-9/1
10th anniversary Dark History & Horror Con
@ Orpheum Champaign (The Orpheum Theater), Champaign, IL

11/1-11/2
23rd Route 66 Film Festival*
@ Hoogland Center for the Arts, Springfield, IL

 

COMMUNITY & CAMPUS SERIES | Champaign-Urbana area

Chambana Film Festival – Spring 2014 screening series
@ Phoenix Savoy 16 + IMAX, Savoy, IL, 4 p.m.
4/28: TRAPPED BALLOON; 5/26: BIKE VESSEL

Illini Radio Group presents “Rewind 92.5 Movie Series”/“Mix 94.5 Throwback Thursdays”*
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL, 7 p.m.
4/25: PITCH PERFECT*; 5/23: FAME (1980); 6/27: HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER’S STONE*; 7/11: GREASE “sing-a-long” edition

Illinois Public Media presents “The Arthouse Experience Film Series”
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL, 7 p.m.
4/26: AMÉLIE; 5/24: FREE SOLO; 7/5: STOP MAKING SENSE

Illini Union Board presents “Spring 2024 Weekend Films”
@ Pine Lounge, 1st floor, Illini Union, UIUC, Urbana, IL, 7 p.m. Fri. & Sat, free w/i-card
4/5-4/6: FERRARI; 4/12-4/13: THE BOYS IN THE BOAT; 4/19-4/20: WONKA; 4/26-4/27: THE BOOK OF CLARENCE; 5/3-5/4: THE IRON CLAW

The News-Gazette Film Series
@ The Virginia Theatre, Champaign, IL, 1 & 7 p.m.
4/13: THE THIRD MAN

Roger Ebert Center for Film Studies events
@ Spurlock Museum of World Cultures, UIUC, Urbana, IL, 7 p.m. (unless noted otherwise)
4/16-4/17: Roger Ebert Symposium, “Representations and Their Critics”

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Compiled by Jason Pankoke.

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“Calendar du C-U”
© 2024 Jason Pankoke/C-U Blogfidential

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