Showing posts with label movie review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label movie review. Show all posts

Monday, March 11, 2013

FILM OPENING & TICKET GIVEAWAY: The End of Love #review #giveaway

OPENING at Facets Multimedia, Chicago 
March 15th.   

ChiIL out with ChiIL Live Shows and win a pair of tickets to The End of Love showing of your choice here.   Click the Rafflecopter link below to enter through midnight 3/12.   Recommended for ages 15+ (MPAA RATING:  Not rated. Contains some strong language and mild drug content.)

We had a chance to check out a press preview of The End of Love and we were blown away by the poignant plot and genuine rapport of Mark Webber and his toddler son.  The fact that they have an actual father/son relationship and bond makes the characters realistic and the improvised dialogue natural in a way even a great script struggles to approach.  It's intriguing to me that Mark pulled this off without a crew, generally in single takes.  My husband's been in the film/TV industry for over 25 years as a location sound engineer, and I know what a behemoth behind the scenes production usually is!  Mark is on to something vital and dynamic with his hybrid reality show/art film genre.

The End of Love is a must see.  This film has beautiful camera work and deals with matters of life and death, the intensity, fear and exhaustion of being responsible for another little life, and conversely the pure creativity and silly joy that spending 24/7 with a toddler can bring.  It's tough to grieve and recover from the loss of a loved one, through death or even a break up, and far more so when you've got to mentally and physically keep it together for a child.  This is a tribute to that struggle; a coming of age story and a family love story unlike any other I've seen.   

When the mother of his two-year-old son suddenly passes away, down-on-his-luck actor Mark (filmmaker Mark Webber) is forced to confront his shortcomings. He can no longer avoid his responsibilities, but he continues to cope with his reluctance to mature, struggling with the demands of being a single father. When he has a meaningful encounter with a young mother, Mark is no longer able to live in the comfort of denial, as this relationship offers not only a reprieve from loneliness, but a glimmer of hope for the future as well.

The End of Love is an intimate and honest slice-of-life portrait of a father and son (played by Webber's real life son, Isaac) in transition. This semiautobiographical drama is an achingly honest portrait which tells a story about the universal pain of loss and the courage it takes to change. With Michael Cera, Amanda Seyfried and Aubrey Plaza.

Directed by Mark Webber, U. S.A., 2012, 90 mins.

Onion AV Club     Los Angeles Times            

Facets Showtimes:
Fri., Mar. 15 at 7 & 9 pm
Sat., Mar. 16 at 3, 5, 7 & 9 pm
Sun., Mar. 17 at 1. 3, 5 & 7 pm
Mon.-Thurs., Mar.18-21 at 7 & 9 pm   

Grand Jury Prize
for Dramatic Feature
Sundance Film Fest

"The threat [of economic collapse] is brought home by the extraordinary intimacy and tenderness with which The End Of Love captures the relationship between father and son"
  -Onion AV Club

"Exceptionally intimate... Told in a loose, surprisingly involving cinema verité style, the film is as successful depicting the smallest daily routines between parent and it is at portraying life's more overwhelming moments"
  -Los Angeles Times

 "The End of Love excels at conveying the moment-to-moment frustrations and exhilarations of being a dad"
  -TimeOut NY

"The End of Love connects and lingers by making incredible effort seem natural"


Mark Webber (Save the Date, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World), Shannyn Sossamon (Rules of Attraction, 40 Days & 40 Nights)

Michael Cera (Juno, Superbad, Arrested Development), Jason Ritter (Parenthood) Amanda Seyfried (Mamma Mia, Chloe), Aubrey Plaza (Parks & Recreation, Safety Not Guaranteed)

When the mother of his two year old son Isaac suddenly passes away, struggling actor Mark (played by writer/director Mark Webber) is forced to grapple with his ability to grow up.


As he kindles a relationship with a young single mother (Shannyn Sossamon, 40 Days and 40 Nights), he begins to realize that he can no longer remain in denial about the real life consequences his choices have on Isaac (played by Webber’s real life son to phenomenal affect).   

Set against the backdrop of Los Angeles, The End of Love is an intimate and stunningly honest portrait of a young father in transition between the life he’s been working for and the one that’s waiting for him.

A Here Now Production
in association with
Poor Rich Kids


I starting writing The End of Love right after the relationship with my son's mother was coming to an end.   My son was a year old at the time. My passion for making another film was reaching a fever point.   I've always been obsessed with realism in film, and I knew my next project needed to explore that obsession.

It hit me suddenly: why not take what I was going through in my life and use that to build a character and create an ultimate situation where I could live in character for the duration of the shoot.  I never had a father growing up, and I myself at the time was a brand new dad.  One night playing with my son, the story of The End of Love was born.

I rehearsed with my cinematographer Patrice Cochet on how we could film the movie in a way that would not obstruct the real life moments happening.  He came over and played with my son and me for a full month before we even got started.   

The filming was very experimental in nature. It is mostly shot in real time utilizing just single takes.   

We had no crew.

Patrice and I got to the point of being so in synch with one another, I would make a small gesture or glance and 
he knew where to move the camera. 
In this day and age where millions of people are tuning into reality television, I hope audiences will connect with my cinematic version. In so many ways as an artist, my work is a reflection and reaction to what I'm experiencing in my life. I love leaving a film where I felt a connection with its characters, where I feel I have related somehow, and I believe The End of Love successfully blurs the line between reality and fiction in a way where the raw emotion is so easy to tap into.

It's been a huge eye opening journey for me, and I hope you enjoy the film as much as I do. 

Thank you.


Wednesday, February 27, 2013

REVIEW: Jack the Giant Slayer 3D #original photos #review

ChiILin' out with ChiIL Mama & Jack the Giant Slayer Giveaways at CircEsteem Circus Arts School Monday

We've been eagerly anticipating the press preview of Warner Brothers' latest, Jack the Giant Slayer 3D, and we finally got to see it last night!   It was truly epic and the whole family loved it.   This show combines all the elements of great cinema, action packed battles with mythical creatures, unique costumes, brave underdogs, evil underlings, visually stunning scenery, romance, and a princess who kicks butt instead of staying home and being prissy.    

Sagezilla, my 9 year old daughter, was so jazzed to have another strong, female role model instead of the comatose princesses of my childhood, sleeping their lives away, awaiting a kiss from a prince.   Isabelle is a rockin' role model who longs for adventure and sneaks out often incognito.  She's even got a cool mom who gets it, and encourages her to have adventures as a child, and see how the world works, so she can better govern later as a queen.

Sure, the whole premise of man eating giants descending on mankind is pretty intense, and if you have younger kids and you're in doubt, read up, check out on line previews and reviews or see it yourself first.  We've found some sensitive tweens have trouble with extreme action films and some younger kids are just fine.  Everyone knows their own children's limits best.  Jack the Giant Slayer is rated PG13, but we were confident our 9 & 11 year olds could handle it just fine.   Jack the Giant Slayer is no more creepy or scary than Harry Potter, Star Wars, or the Lord of the Rings films.

The kids were enthusiastic in their praise for the movie.   Sure, it's based on the classic Jack and the Beanstalk fairy tale and has other familiar elements.   My kids noted the "farm boy" and kids in bed hearing stories nod to Princess Bride, and the very gollum like mini head on the creepiest giant.   Yet, Jack the Giant Slayer is an entirely new tale as well, and one that's sure to become a family favorite for generations.

Sage looked at me with a huge grin as the movie ended and said "I may have nightmares for a month, but it was worth it!"  She slept just fine last night without a giant nightmare in site.  Jack the Giant Slayer is entertaining, enchanting and highly recommended.

Bean Stalk Scalers & CircEsteem Shows

WORLDS COLLIDE ALERT:  Two shows are opening in Chicago this Friday, that we're super stoked about, here at ChiIL Mama.... Jack the Giant Slayer 3D movie and CircEsteem's Performing Troupe Show, Circus Symphony, for two shows only.   

If a plague of giants descended on us, I'd want these super climbers on my side!   These confident kids don't flinch at heights, could scale a bean stalk with ease, and rock the aerial arts and acro...useful life skills whether you're battling oversized, man eating bullies or keeping fit and entertaining your friends.

We gave away 400 Jack the Giant Slayer 3D movie preview tickets to our readers and they were gone in a matter of hours.  When Warner Brothers offered us Jack the Giant Slayer show swag, too, we instantly thought of the CircEsteem circus stars.   Who better to show off the Next Big Thing T's than Chi-town's larger than life circus troupe?!    

One of the Circus Troupe kids is even named Jack!

These kids have some super sized skills and they're the most likely to actually be able to scale a bean stalk and take on a race of giants with panache. 

CircEsteem Proudly Presents

The CircEsteem Teen Ensemble!
Don't miss 'Circus Symphony'- the 4th annual youth created, directed, and produced circus show presented by the 'CircusTeens' of CircEsteem.

Circus Symphony is a fusion of circus arts and music that explores two seemingly separate worlds as one by combining the unique talents of the CircusTeen group.

CircEsteem's CircusTeen program engages young performers by offering participants  employment in the arts. CircEsteem hires the most talented and skilled teens to teach, perform, and mentor younger students and collectively have performed hundreds of shows around Chicago, the United States, and the Globe.

Showtimes are Friday March 1st and Saturday March 2nd at 7pm and tickets are sold on a sliding scale between $7 and $20.

For more info please visit our website!

2 Mar 2013 - 7:00 PM
4730 N Sheridan Road
Chicago, IL 60640

The troupe show is entirely written, produced and publicized by the kids themselves.   Come check 'em out.   We caught up with them at rehearsal Monday, and they were digging the Jack swag!

Sagezilla & other girls of action need great role models like Jack & the Giant Slayer's Princess Isabelle, who is not only pretty & passionate, but adventurous, active, brave, smart and kind, too. 

We adore mighty girls, and know they have a nurturing space at CircEsteem, where boys & girls from toddlers to teens can embrace their strength and climb, flip, roll, and fly.

We adore CircEsteem for their mission statement, too.   They're a non profit and keep classes sliding scale.  They also offer free tutoring, college scholarships, and work programs to keep circus arts accessible and affordable to all Chi-town's kids, which is a giant sized task, especially in tough economic times when corporate donations are down!   

The team kids encompass a huge variety of races, income levels, and areas of town, and form lasting friendships with kids they'd otherwise never cross paths with.   If you're in a position to support them by seeing their shows or kicking in some monetary support, we highly recommend it.

If you're looking for circus arts classes for kids or adults or a rockin' summer camp, check them out.   Our family has been personally involved with CircEsteem for close to 3 years and couldn't be happier with the experience.   Our kids have grown physically, mentally and emotionally, in stunning ways, all while laughing, playing, and having too much fun.  

Even my son who was firmly on the shy side, has become a seasoned, confident performer.   I've never seen him grin so much and have such a great time as he does at CircEsteem.

Coming THIS Friday.....March 1st!

Disclosure:   Thanks to Warner Brothers, Gofobo, and the Jack the Giant Slayer movie for tickets and goodies to review and give away to our readers.  You rock!   Check out the Jack and the Giant Slayer movie opening 3/1/13.  All opinions are our own.

Jack the Giant Slayer Fun At Beat Kitchen #originalphotos #review #gofobo #warnerbros

Jack the Giant Slayer fun at Beat Kitchen's Concerts for Kids last weekend With ChiIL Mama

Beat Kitchen is THE place to beat the winter blahs, beat drums, and as of last weekend... BEAT GIANTS!

We rocked the Jack goodies at two of the Beat Kitchen's Concerts for Kids where all ages were happily sporting "I'm a giant slayer stickers".   ChiIL Mama's proud to be the press sponsor for the kids' series again this year.  

Last weekend we were proud to present The Boogers, Ramones style punk for your punk kin, and Apples Peaches Lemonade, sweet songs for little folk, with kids in the band as well as the audience.   Here at ChiIL Mama we give away free family 4 packs of tickets to EVERY Beat Kitchen concert for kids, so enter weekly for your chance to win tickets to some rockin', live all ages shows.   Shows are every Sunday at noon and now we're adding some Saturdays at 3:30 as well!


Our Jack the Giant Slayer giveaway table was a huge hit there on Saturday and Sunday.  


People especially dug the eco-friendly bags, hats, tees, temp tattoos, screen cleaners, posters, book marks and even creative bean shaped ear buds (perfect for Jack The Giant Slayer apps and free video games on line here)!

The giants are coming...  Jack the Giant Slayer opens THIS Friday.....March 1st!

Disclosure:   Thanks to Warner Brothers, Gofobo, and the Jack the Giant Slayer movie for tickets and goodies to review and give away to our readers.  You rock!   Check out the Jack and the Giant Slayer movie opening 3/1/13.  All opinions are our own.

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