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2015 Chicago Underground Film Festival: Official Lineup

By Mike Everleth ⋅ May 11, 2015

Film festival poster that looks like an underground map of Chicago

The 22nd annual Chicago Underground Film Festival presents five days of devastating celluloid provocations on May 13-17 at the Logan Theatre.

The fest kicks off on May 13 with the incredibly haunting short film Echoes by Jaimz Asmundson and the Filipino romantic crime drama Ruined Heart: Another Lovestory Between a Criminal and a Whore by the single-named director Khavn.

Highlights of the fest include the new slacker-ific comedy by Lev Kalman and Whitney Horn, L for Leisure; the Spanish socio-political documentary Speculation Nation by Bill Brown and Sabine Gruffat; the pastoral friendship drama For the Plasma by Bingham Bryant & Kyle Molzan; and the joyful pop doc Living Stars by Gastón Duprat and Mariano Cohn.

There are also loads of un-missable short films, such as the gritty modern film noir Bite Radius by Spencer Parsons; and amazing new films by Jennifer Reeder (Blood Below the Skin), Zachary Epcar (Under the Heat Lamp an Opening), Mike Olenick (Beautiful Things), Soda_Jerk (Undaddy Mainframe), Thorsten Fleisch (Picture Particles) and tons more.

The fun then closes on May 17 with Burnt in Memory, My Lover Has Steel Legs and Street Lights For Eyes, a visual ode to the Windy City itself directed by Robert Stockwell.

The full 2015 Chicago Underground Film Festival lineup is below, but please visit the fest’s official site for more info.

May 13

8:00 p.m.: Ruined Heart: Another Lovestory Between a Criminal and a Whore, dir. Khavn. When the girlfriend of a ruthless crime boss falls in love with the henchman assigned to protect her, the romantic pair go on the run.
Screening with:
Echoes, dir. Jaimz Asmundson

May 14

6:30 p.m.: L for Leisure, dir. Lev Kalman and Whitney Horn. In the early 1990s, a group of graduate students avoid adulthood by going on a series of vacations filled with immature activities.
Screening with:
En Plein Air, dir. Jerzy Rose

7:00 p.m.: “sonnet entitled how to run the world”
Broken Jaw, dir. Russell Sheaffer and Aaron Michael Smith
Special Features, dir. James N. Kienitz Wilkins
Babash, dir. Lisa Truttmann & Behrouz Rae
Discussion Questions, presented by Martin Thebes, dir. Jonn Herschend
F for Fibonacci, dir. Beatrice Gibson
Non-Stop Beautiful Ladies, dir. Alee Peoples
I’m in Pittsburgh and It’s Raining, dir. Jesse McLean
Hacked Circuit, dir. Deborah Stratman

8:30 p.m.: Navajazo, dir. Ricardo Silva. In Tijuana, several unconnected characters — including an amateur singer, lovestruck junkies and two professional fighters — struggle to survive in a cruel, uncaring, semi-apocalyptic world.
Screening with:
Cut, dir. Christoph Girardet & Matthias Müller

9:00 p.m.: “Critical Paranoia: Dark Night Rising”
Curator Ernest J Ramon has collected a host of strange and controversial conspiracy videos that explore how popular culture might just hold the secret meanings of our shocking reality.

May 15

4:00 p.m.: IMMUNE!, dir. Ryan Scammell. After saving a dying man on the subway, a man devotes his life to healing all people everywhere.
Screening with:
The Rapture, dir. Michael Fleming
Resolve To Be Ready, dir. Eugene Sun Park

5:00 p.m.: “a clown’s smirk in the skull of a baboon”
Gente Perra, dir. Anja Dornieden & Juan David Gonzalez Monroy
Washingtonia, dir. Konstantina Kotzamani
Ennui Ennui, dir. Gabriel Abrantes

6:30 p.m.: “Humanity i love you”
Everything For the Movies, dir. Lukas Buys
Out of the Mold, dir. Michel Moon
Resting Place, dir. Kristjan Knigge
Violets, dir. Jim Vendiola
Nature Boy, dir. Annelise Ogaard

6:30 p.m.: “if a cheerfulest Elephantangelchild should sit”
Uzi’s Party, dir. Lyra Hill
High and Dry, dir. T.J. Misny
Blood Below The Skin, dir. Jennifer Reeder

8:30 p.m.: Speculation Nation, dir. Bill Brown and Sabine Gruffat. Examining the Spanish housing crisis as citizens unite to fight for their right for a place to live.
Screening with:
The Traditional Day for Eating Grilled Eel, dir. Joel Schlemowitz

9:00 p.m.: “luminous tendril of celestial wish”
Falling, dir. Robert Todd
1 Part 7, dir. Reynold Reynolds
Soundprint, dir. Monteith McCollum
Die Bergfrau, dir. Kerstin Neuwirth
The Queen of Material, dir. Rajee Samarasinghe
Atlantis, dir. Ben Russell
La Isla Está Encantada con Ustedes (The Island Is Enchanted With You), dir. Alexander Carver & Daniel Schmidt

May 16

2:00 p.m.: “one’s not half two. It’s two are halves of one:”
Notes From the Anthropocene, dir. Terra Jean Long
Fort Morgan, dir. Alexander Stewart
Immortality, home and elsewhere, dir. Sasha Litvintseva
Under the Heat Lamp an Opening, dir. Zachary Epcar
Don’t Go Away, dir. Christine Kirouac

3:00 p.m.: “the great advantage of being alive”
Fausto and Emilio, dir. Nora Sweeney
Port Noir, dir. Laura Kraning
Klan in Chapel Hill 1987, dir. Michael Galinsky
Atomic City, dir. David McMurry
Real West, dir. Kevin T Allen

6:00 p.m.: Sailing A Sinking Sea, dir. Olivia Wyatt. This documentary profiles the Moken people, a small ethnic minority living in Burma and Thailand whose entire culture and belief system revolves around water.
Screening with:
A Dream at the Edge of Land, dir. Steve Wood
War Prayer, dir. Richard Wiebe

7:00 p.m.: “what a proud dreamhorse pulling(smoothloomingly)through”
After Creation After Icebergs, dir. Mary Beth Reed
Extraits D’une Famille, dir. Rhayne Vermette
Celestial Object, dir. Ben Balcom
“Subtle Distance”, dir. Christina Santa Cruz
Her Silent Seaming, dir. Nazlı Dinçel
Blue Loop, July, dir. Mike Gibisser
Under The Atmosphere, dir. Mike Stoltz
Mototanaka Dérive, dir. Michael Lyons & Malte Steiner
Au Bord De La Rivière (At The Edge of the River), dir. Mike Rollo
Serena Gundy, dir. Stephen Broomer
Things, dir. Ben Rivers

8:00 p.m.: For the Plasma, dir. Bingham Bryant & Kyle Molzan. Two female forest-fire lookouts in Northern Maine who base their financial decisions on what they see in their immediate landscape.

9:00 p.m.: “Dirty Looks presents ‘Hardcore Home Movies’ — Curated by Bradford Nordeen”
Fiend, dir. Jonesy
Hard-Core Home Movies, dir. Greta Snider
Birthday Party, dir. Jill Reiter
The Troublemakers, dir. G.B. Jones
The Salivation Army, dir. Scott Treleaven
Dr. Chris Teen Sex Surrogate (from Three Faces of Women), dir. Rick Castro
Our Gay Brothers, dir. Greta Snider

10:00 p.m.: “when serpents bargain for the right to squirm”
Some Southern Country, dir. Michael Paul Lopez
Night of the Blood Squatch, dir. Kenny Reed
The Lingerie Show, dir. Laura Harrison
Bite Radius, dir. Spencer Parsons

May 17

2:00 p.m.: “proud of his scientific attitude — Curated by Emily Oscarson”
We Were Not Made For This World, dir. Colin West McDonald
Toward The Flame, dir. Paul Turano
Terity Entitory, dir. Todd Mattei
New, dir. John Harden
The Mysterious Disappearance of the Town’s Last Resident, dir. Damon Mohl
Elsewhere, the Survivors, dir. Ali Aschman
Happy Fun Room, dir. Greg Pak
Εν καιρώ ειρήνης (In Times of Peace), dir. Nikos Vouteniotis

3:00 p.m.: Evaporating Borders, dir. Iva Radivojevic. An examination into the trends and attitudes facing migrating populations in the world.
Screening with:
Wawa, dir. Sky Hopinka
Chora, dir. Anna Kipervaser

4:00 p.m.: “my sweet old etcetera”
Beautiful Things, dir. Mike Olenick
Undaddy Mainframe, dir. Soda_Jerk
Detroit Overture, dir. Lisa Kortschak
Mainsqueeze, dir. Jon Rafman
The End of an Error, dir. Peter Freund
The Riddle (ghost chair), dir. Paul Tarragó
A Brief Portrait of the Eternal Recurrence, dir. Karl Lind
Steel Mill Rolling, dir. Ross Nugent
Bad At Dancing, dir. Joanna Arnow
Tits, dir. Teemu Nikki

5:00 p.m.: “Of Ever-Ever Land I speak”
Picture Particles, dir. Thorsten Fleisch
In a Perfect Fever, dir. Kera MacKenzie, Andrew Mausert-Mooney
Speculum, dir. Richard Ashrowan
Night Noon, dir. Shambhavi Kaul
Ginza Strip, dir. Dianna Barrie, Richard Tuohy
Memento Mori, dir. Pelin Kirca
Cicatrix, dir. Jeremy Moss
The Stroboscope, dir. Justin Lincoln
Horizon, dir. Stephanie Barber
Displacements, dir. Manuel Alvarez Diestro
Limited Speech Holds Endless Misunderstandings, dir. Orr Menirom

6:00 p.m.: Living Stars, dir. Gastón Duprat and Mariano Cohn. This documentary captures the pure joy exhibited by regular people dancing to pop music in Buenos Aires.
Screening with:
Out, dir. Joan Antúnez

7:00 p.m.: Privilege and Obsession, dir. Stephen Graves. Mixing archival footage from the ’50s and ’60s with modern footage that critically examines the time-honored tradition of college graduation.
Screening with:
Congratulations (One Step At A Time), dir. Roger Beebe

8:15 p.m.: Burnt in Memory, My Lover Has Steel Legs and Street Lights For Eyes, dir. Robert Stockwell. A document of the mundane as experienced in Chicago, Illinois.