DIRECTED BY: JAFFE ZINN
SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 22nd @5:45 PM
If you were a fan of Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead's independent sci-fi bender The Endless, then I highly recommend Jaffe Zinn's Children. Audiences will recognize star Kate Lyn Sheil, who has burst onto the acting scene in films such as Brigsby Bear and groundbreaking documentary Kate Plays Christine. She plays Heidi, who with Abbie (Samantha Jacober) embarks on a trip through the Idaho countryside. Living free out of their cars, they hike, and dip their toes in flowing lakes, not because they love to explore, but because they believe they are living in the end of times. Seeing Children on the big Davis Theater screen is a must, with beautiful landscape visuals, but it's also a twisted journey about fundamental religious thought. The screenplay was co-written by Sheil, Jacober, and director Zinn so the entire production is a team success.
MOVIE: MERCY'S GIRL
DIRECTED BY: EMILY LAPE
FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 21st @3:30PM
I was surprised by the feature Mercy's Girl, not because I was expecting things to be bad, but because director Emily Lape is extremely confident in making her first feature. The director also stars as Mercy, a closeted gay woman, who embarks on a beautiful relationship with an attractive college student named Jesse (Alison Hixon), but keeps that part of her life closed off to her extremely religious mother Linda (Rainee Denham). It may be a story we're familiar with, but Lape conducts the narrative with precision, using the camera to observe Mercy, letting her surroundings be the score, and sucking us in with the narratives emotional stress. Mercy's Girl is honest, tender, and a fantastic first feature from Lape. It's my favorite from the Middle Coast Festival.
The Middle Coast Film Festival is making a move to the big leagues. After four years of success in Bloomington, Indiana, programming directors Jess Levandoski and Mylissa Fitzsimmons are bringing their fresh independent film festival to the Davis Theater in Chicago's Logan Square. Boasting a phenomenal blend of over 50 plus short films, unique discussion panels, and fantastic feature films, the Middle Coast Film Festival has plenty to offer for those looking for something new and exciting. Here are some recommendations from AMovieGuy.com of what's a must-see! GET TICKETS HERE It all starts Friday September 21st-23rd at the Middle Coast Film Festival:
MOVIE: THE RUNNER
DIRECTED BY: CLARE COONEY
FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 21st @8:00PM
One of the highlights of the Middle Coast Film Festival are the various short films and a Chicago based short called The Runner has been one of the best of 2018. The Runner made it's debut at the Chicago Critics Film Festival back in May, but director/writer Clare Cooney's film is so good, that it's worthy of being screened at as many festivals as possible. Cooney stars as Becca, who goes out for her daily jog, when she takes a turn down an alley that turns her life around. To reveal what Becca experiences would give up the entire movie, but the stellar work of Clare Cooney, from direction, writing, to her performance, is more than enough evidence that this is a must-see.
MOVIE: IN A MOMENT
DIRECTED BY: DUSTIN PUEHLER
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 23rd @10:30PM
The independent film of director Dustin Puehler has the style and look of Jeremey Saulnier's Blue Ruin, but lacks in the energy that I was expecting from it. I actually would recommend In A Moment to plenty of viewers, because I respect the hell out of it. It's two stories going on at once, following a group of drug dealers that rob houses to make money and an online chat relationship that turns into true romance when the couple meets in person. These two groups meet by chance and the ending is a tense rescue mission, which I enjoyed, I just wish I loved all of it. In A Moment is an ambitious piece of cinema, with strong work from director Dustin Puehler. It's a movie I want to give a second look and one you should check out.