Road” is a Chinese movie with a Milwaukee
“Roller Life” focuses on a Milwaukee roller derby
league, the Brewcity Bruisers.
AT A GLANCE
Tickets can be obtained from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. weekdays
and noon to 8 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays at the Landmark
Oriental Theatre, 2230 N. Farwell Ave., Milwaukee,
before and during the festival, as well as at the
various venues’ doors at the times of screenings.
Those four other venues: the Fox Bay Cinema Grill, 334
E. Silver Spring Drive, Whitefish Bay, the Times Cinema,
5906 W. Vliet St., Milwaukee, Landmark Downer Theatre,
2589 N. Downer Ave., Milwaukee, and Avalon, 2473 S.
Kinnickinnic Ave., Milwaukee.
For additional information regarding MFF events, go to
ninth annual Milwaukee Film Festival, running for two
weeks from Thursday to Oct. 12, promises - as usual - a
great variety of cinematic offerings. A dozen promising
MFF entries are synopsized below.
“Aladdin.” The MFF marks the silver anniversary of
the 1992 animated Disney
take on the age-old folk tale, whose songs include “A
Whole New World.” Robin Williams voices the genie.
“American Fable” tells the story of a pre-adolescent
farm girl who comes upon a man confined to an abandoned
“Blood Is at the Doorstep.” Rather poetically billed
as “a heart-rending portrait of justice deferred,”
this look at the Dontre Hamilton situation has been
designated this year’s MFF “Centerpiece” movie.
Filmed over three years, “Blood” focuses on the
family of Hamilton, who was shot to death by a police
officer in downtown Milwaukee’s Red Arrow Park. (See
interview with the film’s creator on page 18.)
Life” focuses on a Milwaukee roller derby
league, the Brewcity Bruisers.
“I, Daniel Blake.” A UK/Belgium/France production
that won the Palme d’Or at Cannes, “I, Daniel”
concerns a heart attack victim battling the British
bureaucracy and connecting in the process with a single
mom and her children. It was directed by Ken Loach
(“Jimmy’s Hall,” “The Wind That Shakes the
“Lemon.” Trailers depict an intriguing-looking
comedy about a lovable (or not) loser. Rhea Perlman and
Michael Cera join
the film’s star, Brett Gelman, who wrote the script
along with his spouse, “Lemon’s” director Janicza
“Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992.” This
documentary was produced and helmed by former
Milwaukee-area resident John Ridley, Oscar-winning
screenwriter for “12 Years a Slave” and director of
the Jimi Hendrix biopic “Jimi: All Is by My Side,” a
previous MFF feature.
“Let It Fall” examines the City of Angels in
the decade leading up to the Rodney King debacle.
“The Lost World.” The Landmark Oriental Theatre on
Milwaukee’s East Side will provide the exquisite
setting for the screening of this silent film from 1925.
The Alloy Orchestra will play music to accompany the
story written by Arthur Conan Doyle and starring Wallace
Beery (whose character insists dinosaurs still roam the
earth) and Lewis Stone on the big screen.
“Love Jones.” A 35 mm screening, a rarity, will be
accorded Theodore Witcher’s 1997 flick at the
Oriental. “Love Jones” highlights an amorous
African-American couple (Larenz Tate - recently one of
the better aspects of “Girls Trip” - and Nia Long)
and is, per publicists, “set in a middle-class
bohemian milieu that Hollywood still struggles to
“Manlife.” Director Ryan Sarnowski, a filmmaker
associated with the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee,
takes a look at the many-sided Alfred Lawson and a
disciple who for years peddled the Englishman’s
philosophy of Lawsonomy. If you recall the “University
of Lawsonomy” sign off of Interstate 94 in Racine
County, you’re thinking along the right lines.
“Requiem for a Running Back.” Rebecca Carpenter
directed this documentary about her father, a football
player for the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions who
was victimized by the neurocognitive disorder CTE. Still
to see it, this reviewer is tempted to label
“Requiem” a documentary complement to the 2015
feature flick “Concussion” starring Will Smith.
“Roller Life.” Michael Brown’s doc examines
Milwaukee’s Bay City Bruisers female roller derby
league, including teams known as the Rushin’ Rollettes
and the Shevil Knevils.
“Scott Road.” William Tang helmed the Chinese film,
a love triangle story of initiation produced by
Milwaukeean Youcai Yang. “Scott Road” has been
called “proof that global cinema can come from our own