Thursday, July 28, 2016

2016 Films: Snow Bird

Snow Bird by Sangsun Choi
Wisconsin (Wisconsin Premiere)
Running Time: 6 minutes
Screening Time: Saturday Sept 10th, Juried Films Part 2



This dance film is a fairy tale about a snow bird which is born in Winter. The bird has lost her way in the forest so due to her confusion and loneliness, she would like to return to the egg, however, the egg is already broken. There is no way for her to get out of the forest and she doesn't know where to go. What she can do is just dance while waiting for something invisible to guide her.

Director's Bio:

Sangsun Choi is an Assistant Professor in media production for Malone University. He has a MFA in Film from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.


2016 Films: The Dressing Room

The Dressing Room by Shannon McInnis
Wisconsin (Wisconsin Premiere)
Running Time: 10 minutes
Screening Time: Saturday Sept 10th, 6PM

Coming of Age/Comedy/Women

A young girl growing into adulthood relates a dress-buying experience to a representation of her transition.

Director's Bio:

Shannon McInnis is a young filmmaker, Film student and vocal a capella enthusiast. She is a founding member of Reel Women, a student-led organization dedicated to educating the community on gender disparity in the film industry and empowering marginalized student filmmakers. She has served on the crew for three feature films as Assistant Director and Script Supervisor. Her first feature, Catching Faith, stars Bill Engvall and is available on Netflix. Shannon is currently finishing her degree in Film and plans to pursue a career in the film industry.

Director Statement:

As a writer/director, I feel passionate about telling stories that go beyond a simple black and white narrative. I enjoy films that challenge our thinking and speak to the vast difference between human beings. I also appreciated films with realistic empowering female characters, and I think the best films come from a great community of people working together.

2016 Films: Buddies

Buddies by Tyler Danielson
Wisconsin (Wisconsin Premiere)
Running Time: 3 minutes
Screening Time: Saturday Sept 10th, 3:30PM


The brief story about my Grandmother, and the pets she has accumulated.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

2016 Films: The Painted Lady

The Painted Lady by Stephanie Bollag
New York (Wisconsin Premiere)
Running Time: 10 minutes
Screening Time: Saturday September 10th, 3:30PM


When SAM (25) catches JACOB (60) painting another woman at his studio, the young stripper realizes that she has been replaced as his muse and lover. Sam’s subsequent attempts to win Jacob back fail. Even her promiscuous behavior at the strip club does not provoke Jacob to change his mind. At the pier overlooking Manhattan by night, Sam both visually and emotionally gains perspective. Standing by the river she realizes the destructive nature of their relationship. In a covert, nocturnal operation, Sam breaks into Jacob’s apartment on a mission to free herself from his grip and gaze.




Director’s Statement

I believe that the work we produce as artists is to a certain degree autobiographical. And even though I have yet to break into a lover’s apartment, I know what it feels like to be consumed by a man’s perception. In all my films to date, I explore strong yet fragile female characters that ultimately succeed in taking charge of their emotions and destiny. What happens when life is uprooted by a breakup, an unhappy marriage, a failed job opportunity or an addiction? How do we as modern women find our way to self-acceptance? My stories tend to exhibit a degree of self-hate and masochism but their outcome is a positive one. Nothing is more liberating than finding your place in life and being at ease with who you are.

In The Painted Lady, Sam goes on such a journey. In the beginning of the film she is consumed by the way Jacob sees and paints her. His vision and version of her is empowering and addictive. One of my favorite moments in the film is when Sam stands at the pier overlooking NYC by night. It is cold and she is lonely and then suddenly she starts laughing. Life can be brutal but taking on a different perspective makes her realize that life isn’t that bad after all. Sam’s emotional shift is put into action in the final scene. By destroying/repainting Jacob’s portrait of her, she reclaims her self-image. Sam is now no longer dependent on Jacob’s gaze. She is free.

2016 Films: ThreeSixFive

ThreeSixFive by Ken Lawrence
Milwaukee (Wisconsin Premiere)
Running Time: 7 minutes
Screening Time: Saturday September 10th, 6PM


 Based on a true story of a woman's horrifying life changing experience.




Director's Bio:

Born and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Ken Lawrence grew up with a deep interest in film. At just 10 years old, he begged his single mother for a kid’s version of the Super 8 Camera for Christmas, and although it took everything she had, she supported her son’s dreams. Ken began filming his own shows with friends; turning every day into a drama, every funny moment into a comedy series. Years later, Ken joined the Plastering/Cement Masons Union to support his family but never forgot about his dreams. The failed economy brought Ken back to film. He is currently studying Motion Picture & Television at The Academy of Art University, has joined several local film groups, and works on a variety of local commercials and events throughout Wisconsin. Ken is also currently working on two web series’ and continues to write and turn his life into future films.

2016 Films: Venus Rising from the Undertow

Venus Rising from the Undertow by Karen Lindholm-Rynkiewicz
Milwaukee (Wisconsin Premiere)
Running Time: 12 minutes
Screening Time: Saturday September 10th, 6PM


In the dynamic 1980's of Eastern Europe, Venus and Julia were a beautiful spy team with the CIA, until a simple pick up job goes horribly wrong.

Thirty years later, Julia gets the shock of her life when she spots Venus rising up out of the foaming waters of a Florida beach. Questions from the past come slamming into the now for Julia, who must make the right choice for the both of them. The past is never past.


Director’s Statement:

What happens when spies get old? What happens when you get tired of doing the work, but cannot imagine what else to do?

When I started writing Venus Rising from the Undertow, I was cognizant of the contrast of young people’s dynamic story and that of older people who also still have dynamic stories to tell. I wanted a way to tell the story of the older spies and how their lives have developed over time, how their career choice shaped their world.

The production was set in Fernandina Beach, Florida and Milwaukee’s 3 rd Ward standing in the Eastern Europe of the 70’s. Working with an amazing and dedicated cast and crew it was possible to create a story that was both an action packed drama and a story of a friendship sorely tested by time. It took three years to get the film from concept to final sound edit, all of which was really made possible because many people believed in me and the project throughout that time.

2016 Films: The Ringmaster

The Ringmaster by Chris Mier
Running Time: 8 minutes
Screening Time: Saturday September 10th, 6PM


In this episode of 'The Ringmaster' serial, Larry, an everyday schmo retains the services of the mysterious Ringmaster, Luke Coppersmith. Can the mystical Ringmaster put the pathetic Larry Lumpner into Center Ring? Will Larry get the respect and attention he deserves and realize personal and career success? Will the spectral, magical Ringmaster leave him on a tightrope between what is and what could be?