MIFF to screen work of 14 fabulous Female Filmmakers

By Ruth L Ratny

Filmmaker / editor Gail Gilbert’s short film, thriller “Democracy in the Driver’s Seat,” will be one of 14 women-made shorts showcasing at the Midwest Independent Film Festival’s annual Female Filmmakers Night, Tuesday, Aug. 2.

The distinguished filmmakers have been at their craft for many years, are producing an impressive body of work and possess a large collection of prestigious international awards.

The entries are:

Spunkle.” A man contemplates fatherhood when his older sister and her free-spirited wife ask him to be the sperm donor and uncle of their baby.

Directed by Lisa Donato, a TV spot and show director, whose feature screenplay, “Signature Move,” co-written with Mirza, will be NewCity’s first film production, starting in August.

Crystal Lake.” A group of girls take over a skate park, forming an all-female force field on the half pipe. There, with no boys around, they are thriving and visible.

Written / directed by Jennifer Reeder, an associate professor of art history at the University of Illinois Chicago.

Parallel.” Young Chloe has developed strong feelings for her much older drivers’ ed teacher over their weeks together. When she confronts him on their final lesson will he admit to having feelings of his own?

Written / directed by Mia McCullough, whose plays have been produced at theatres throughout the country; a Northwestern University creative writing teacher and Chicago Dramatists’ resident playwright.

Decay” and “Paradise Lost” are Cutters’ assistant editor Emily Tolan’s experimental super-shorts. “Decay” compares a piece of meat on a platter with treatment of women. “Paradise Lost” is about a woman trying to escape of a monotonous loop of daily chores.

The Blowup Bra,” created as part of “Show & Tell,” a production of Manual Cinema, a performance collective and film/video production company that combines handmade shadow puppetry, cinematic techniques, innovative sound and music.

Directed / edited / puppetry by Sarah Fornace, who is also a narrative designer and stunt and fight choreographer.

Ship Dreams” is from filmmaker Corinne Anderson, who works steadily as an assistant camera/production assistant on network TV series filming here.

Cloud Becomes Your Hand (Hermit)” by Jenna Caravello filmed, edited and animated this music video for the band, Cloud Becomes Your Hand, and their upcoming album ”Rest in Fleas,” which opens with “Hermit.”

Yo No Soy Esa.” On an ordinary winter afternoon, a mother does laundry and her daughter puts her clothes away. What could happen while Mom isn’t looking? Directed by Chicago video artist / photographer Di Delgado Pineda.

Texting: A Love Story.” A short, awkward romantic comedy about love, intimacy, and connection in the digital age. Directed by Ohio film and theatre writer/director Jeanette Buck.

GRUB.” Flip book animation using a 1930’s farmers manual called “Injurious Insects,” created by Lisa Barcy, a teacher at DePaul’s School of Cinematic Arts.

An Evening at Angelo’s.” Septuagenarian Angelo Mortellaro owns Milwaukee’s 30-year-old Angelo’s Piano Lounge, a cozy stage and home for jazz singers and musicians, and a time machine for the uninitiated.

Written, directed, produced and shot by Milwaukee filmmaker Kara Mulrooney, an art director, key wardrobe stylist and instructor at the WW-Milwaukee.

Where We’ve Been.” In this documentary short, a woman dedicates her life to remembering the past, but now as dementia fogs her memory her life’s work bares the risk of being forgotten. Directed by Ohio filmmaker Ashley Brandon.

Yellow Gold,” by digital artist / filmmaker Cristen Leifheit is a stop-motion animated piece that gives voice to a landscape affected by the strain of economics and technology.

At Landmark Century Centre Cinema Theatre, 2828 N. Clark, starting at 6 p.m. Producers Panel, 6:30 p.m. Screening, 7:30 p.m. Post-screening reception follows.