But is it local? A guide to Milwaukee films showing at the MKE Film Festival
The 7th Annual Milwaukee Film Festival, presented by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, announces its Cream City Cinema lineup. Now in its 7th year, Cream City Cinema showcases the best new work from Milwaukee-based filmmakers and awards one local filmmaker with a $5,000 cash award.
30 Seconds Away: Breaking the Cycle
Director: Faith Kohler
Milwaukee's homelessness problem is examined by no less an authority than former federal prosecutor and Marquette graduate Faith Kohler in 30 Seconds Away, a vital documentary examination of this issue from all sides of the argument. Spending time with those struggling to survive on the streets as well as with the justice system and Milwaukee police stuck between trying to enforce the law and care for these forgotten members of society (through means such as our local Homeless Outreach Team), Kohler paints a powerful and empathetic portrait of an ever-growing problem with no easy solutions.
TUESDA, SEPT 29 6:30 PM ORIENTAL THEATREFRIDAY, OCT 2 3:30 PM TIMES CINEMATUESDAY, OCT 6 9:45 PM AVALON THEATER
Director: Kristin Catalano
Meet Clarence Garrett, an African-American WWII veteran who had to put his own dreams of a higher education on hold to put his four children through college. But at the ripe age of 85, Clarence decides to enroll in the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and finally get the last 52 credits that will earn him his bachelor's degree. However, medical complications from an earlier cancer scare threaten to derail his graduation dreams from becoming a reality. Clarence is an inspirational portrait of an indomitable spirit, a documentary that proves it's never too late to finish what you started.
MONDAY, SEPT 28 4 PM TIMES CINEMATHURSDAY, OCT 1 3:15 PM ORIENTAL THEATRESATURDAY, OCT 3 12:30 PM FOX-BAY CINEMA
The Milwaukee Music Video Show
A program that proves the local film scene is every bit the equal of that of our thriving local music scene, the Milwaukee Music Video Show plays host to a variety of musical acts ( Vic and Gab, Webster X, Field Report, Sylvan Esso, Victor DeLorenzo of the Violent Femmes) and the wildly creative local filmmakers who bring their varied soundscapes to visual life. Fun, creative bursts of energy occur as these artistic disciplines combine, a toe-tapping, head-banging, hip-swaying celebration of local art displayed on the majestic big screen of the Oriental Theatre.
WEDNESDAY, SEPT 30 6:30 PM ORIENTAL THEATRE
The Milwaukee Show I
Perennially one of the festival’s hottest tickets, this first of two installments celebrating our wealth of homegrown filmmaking talent includes styles ranging from documentaries to fiction to experimental films—be it the story of a man with a giant thumb for a head, a documentary following the weird world of sport drumming, or the story of a rock band that goes head to head with an invading UFO!
SUNDAY, SEPT 27 8 PM ORIENTAL THEATRE
The Milwaukee Show II
The second installment of our local celebration brings us even more diverse styles and voices from the local film scene, with stories ranging from a documentary about a Kenyan sound engineer’s work in African crisis zones to Orson Welles’ “War of the Worlds” broadcast coming to life in our very own public museum, and even a claymation short about a cat-hating grump saddled with an affection-seeking kitten.
FRIDAY, OCT 2 6:30 PM ORIENTAL THEATRE
The Milwaukee Youth Show
It’s not just the adults making stunning contributions to our local film scene, as this wide-ranging showcase aims to prove. After you take in the diversity of viewpoints and styles crafted by our eminently talented youngsters (documentary, fiction, animation, live action, music video, and PSAs are all covered here), you’ll be excited for the next generation of Cream City Cinema!
SUNDAY, SEPT 27 10:30 AM ORIENTAL THEATRE
Director: Derek Kimball
Set on a small island off of Maine's coast in the late 1980s, Neptune is a coming-of-age story marked by a lush setting and beautiful cinematography. Obsessed by the disappearance of a young boy her age who washed out to sea, young orphan Hannah takes over the boy's former position on a lobster boat, working alongside his grieving father. Having been a ward of the local church since an early age, Hannah begins to chafe at her limited upbringing, plagued by mysterious dreams that appear to be calling her out to sea.
TUESDAY, SEPT 29 3:30 PM AVALON THEATERWEDNESDAY, SEPT 30 9:30 PM ORIENTAL THEATRE
Take the Dog
Directors: Carol Brandt, Andrew Tolstedt
Three punkers pack up their dog and make their way from Milwaukee to California for a brother's wedding in this freewheeling roadtrip from co-directors Andrew Tolstedt and Carol Brandt. Brothers Tim and Jack (along with Tim's girlfriend, Leah) make their way to their brother Patrick's wedding, cutting a booze-soaked swath as they cross the country. Tensions flare and bonds are tested as what it means to be a brother, boyfriend, and responsible adult are all put under the microscope before they reach their final destination, with no guarantee these relationships will last until journey's end.
FRIDAY, SEPT 25 9:30 PM AVALON THEATERTUESDAY, SEPT 29 10:15 PM ORIENTAL THEATREWEDNESDAY, OCT 7 3:15 PM DOWNER THEATRE
Director: Suzanne Jurva
What do you get when you combine the cultural heritage of Yoopers — those born and raised in Michigan's Upper Peninsula — and the classical tradition of opera (or oopera, if you’re Finnish)? You get Yoopera!, an exuberant documentary about a group of people gathering together to tell their local and family history in a beautifully artistic fashion. We follow the commission and production of a major opera for and of the people, maintaining the legacy of family stories and celebrating the history of people who eked out a living in the beautiful and remote U.P.
MONDAY, SEPT 28 4 PM DOWNER THEATRESUNDAY, OCT 4 1 PM AVALON THEATERTHURSDAY, OCT 8 8 PM ORIENTAL THEATRE