Today is the day the Second Annual Chicago Critics Film Festival begins, running through May 15 at the legendary Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Ave. in Chicago. And because I'm so damn excited about our line-up and want people to see as many of the film as possible, I'm going to make that a little easier for folks living in the Chicago area by giving away at least five pairs of tickets each to one movie every day during the festival. Below is a list of the films that you can email me for a free pair of tickets (if you only need one ticket, that's fine too), but I encourage you to take a look at the whole schedule and sample as many of these great selections as possible.
We've got some great guests doing post-screening Q&As, including directors David Wain (THEY CAME TOGETHER), Bobcat Goldthwaite (WILLOW CREEK), Jordan Vogt-Roberts (AMERICAN HAM), and Collin Schiffli (ANIMALS), as well as actors Dick Miller (THAT GUY DICK MILLER and A BUCKET OF BLOOD double-bill), Martin Starr & Jocelyn DeBoer (DEAD SNOW: RED VS. DEAD), and David Dastmalchian (ANIMALS). The festival features 23 Chicago premieres and two shorts programs, totaling 14 shorts between them.
READ CAREFULLY: To win tickets to any of the below films (you may enter to win for three different films only; winners subject to availability--so choose wisely), send me an email at CCFFtickets@aintitcoolmail.com (please note the new email address) with the name of the movie you want tickets for in the Subject Line--for example "Supermensch tickets" or "American Ham tickets" (exactly like that); you must send a separate email with a different Subject Line for each film you want tickets for; so if you want tickets for three movies, you have to send three separate emails, each with a different film title in the Subject Line. In the body of the email, I need your full Name, whether or not you're bringing a Guest (each winner may bring ONE confirmed guest), and that's it. If you win, you'll get an email back from me fairly soon after you enter (assuming I'm awake), and you'll be able to pick up your tickets at the Music Box Theatre box office.
Here are the films I'm offering tickets for. Hope to see you there, folks!
FRIDAY, MAY 9 9:30pm SUPERMENSCH: THE LEGEND OF SHEP GORDON In his directorial debut, Mike Myers documents the astounding career of Hollywood insider, the loveable Shep Gordon, who fell into music management by chance after moving to LA straight out of college, and befriending Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison and Jimi Hendrix. Shep managed rock stars such as Pink Floyd, Luther Vandross, Teddy Pendergrass and Alice Cooper, and later went on to manage chefs such as Emeril Lagasse, ushering in the era of celebrity chefs on television. Stuffed with fantastic archive footage the film traces Shep’s transformation from the 1970s hedonist to today’s practicing Buddhist yearning for a family of his own. Directed by Mike Myers.
SATURDAY, MAY 10 5:45pm THE ONE I LOVE Ethan and Sophie are a married couple on the brink of separation. At the urging of their therapist, they escape to a beautiful vacation house for a weekend getaway in an attempt to salvage what’s left of their relationship. What starts off as a relaxing and tranquil retreat soon spirals into a dizzyingly bizarre experience that forces the couple to reflect upon the complexities of their troubled partnership. Over the course of a few days, Ethan and Sophie work diligently to rediscover their better selves and embrace the unexpected as everything they once thought was real becomes more and more surreal. Directed by Charlie McDowell. Starring Mark Duplass, Elisabeth Moss, and Ted Danson.
SUNDAY, MAY 11 2:45pm 10,000 KM Alexandra and Sergi make love in their tiny Barcelona apartment. They’ve decided to have a baby, but find their plans dashed when Alex receives an offer for an artistic residency in Los Angeles. Understanding this may be Alex’s last chance to re-launch her photography career, the couple decides to put their plans on hold for a year. One year apart, with a continent between them, Alex and Sergi must rely on virtual communication to keep the flame of their relationship alive. But with their realities no longer shared and the touch of one another gone, the technology that has supposedly brought the world closer together may just tear them apart. Directed by Carlos Marques-Marcet. Starring Natalia Tena and David Verdaguer.
MONDAY, MAY 12 7:00pm I, ORIGINS I ORIGINS, the second feature film from writer and director Mike Cahill (ANOTHER EARTH), tells the story of Dr. Ian Gray (Michael Pitt), a molecular biologist studying the evolution of the eye. He finds his work permeating his life after a brief encounter with an exotic young woman (Astrid Bergès-Frisbey) who slips away from him. As his research continues years later with his lab partner Karen (Brit Marling), they make a stunning scientific discovery that has far reaching implications and complicates both his scientific and spiritual beliefs. Traveling half way around the world, he risks everything he has ever known to validate his theory. Directed by Mike Cahill. Starring Brit Marling, Michael Pitt, Astrid Berges-Frisbey, Steven Yeun, and Archie Panjabi.
TUESDAY, MAY 13 7:00pm NICK OFFERMAN: AMERICAN HAM (w/ director Jordan Vogt-Roberts Q&A) This live taping of Nick Offerman’s one-man show at New York’s historic Town Hall theatre features a collection of anecdotes, songs, and woodworking/oral sex techniques. The routine includes Offerman’s 10 tips for living a more prosperous life, so hearken well. Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts (THE KINGS OF SUMMER) returns to the CCFF for the second year in a row. WARNING: MINOR NUDITY AND NOT SUITABLE FOR VEGETARIANS. Directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 14 7:30pm WILLOW CREEK (w/ director Bobcat Goldthwait Q&A) Comedian-turned-filmmaker Bobcat Godlthwait (SHAKES THE CLOWN, GOD BLESS AMERICA) returns with this horror entry about a would-be Bigfoot expert (Bryce Johnson) who, along with his girlfriend (Alexie Gilmore), gets lost while on a camping trip in Sasquatch’s alleged neighborhood and finds that there is something else out there with them. Directed by: Bobcat Goldthwait. Starring Alexie Gilmore and Bryce Johnson.
THURSDAY, MAY 15 6:30pm OBVIOUS CHILD This initially raunchy and ultimately tender comedy tells the story of aspiring comedian Donna Stern, for whom everyday life as a female 20-something provides ample material for her incredibly relatable brand of humor. On stage, Donna is unapologetically herself, joking about topics as intimate as her sex life and as crude as her day-old underwear. But when Donna gets dumped, loses her job, and finds herself pregnant just in time for Valentine’s Day, she has to navigate the murky waters of independent adulthood for the first time. Writer-director Gilliam Robespierre expanded her 2009 short into one of the most popular entries at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Directed by Gillian Robespierre. Starring Jenny Slate, Jake Lacy, Gaby Hoffman, Gabe Liedman, David Cross, and Richard Kind.