The first "Talking Pictures Festival" is taking place this weekend at four different locations in Evanston. Billed as Evanston's first film festival, organizers hope to make it an annual event. Over two dozen films, including many shorts you wouldn't otherwise have a chance to view, will be shown. The festival includes some entries from Evanston and Chicago area firmmakers, providing opportunity to check out the creativity of some homegrown talent.
Today's highlights include a 1:00 pm Animation & Shorts Showcase, a 90-minute program with half a dozen works, including Joey Garfield's urban-dance Work It Out. At 8 pm, the five foreign Live Action Shorts nominated for this year's Academy Awards will be screened (yes, they do eventually get shown -- venues like this is where). Both of these are showing at the Block Cinema at Northwestern University, 40 Arts Circle Drive (enter from the south, off Sheridan Road).
Another interesting entry is Disconnected, a 62-minute fim by eight Carleton College students that studies what happens when students are suddenly deprived of their computers (5 pm at Boocoo Cultural Center).
Tomorrow, Sunday, May 3 at 2:15, the Academy-Award-nominated The Garden will screen at the Block Cinema. This documentary tells the story of a 1.4-acre community garden in the South Central neighborhood of L.A., and is co-presented with the Evanston Food Policy Council. At 4:30, Oscar-nominated animated shorts will screen at Boocoo.
Screenings at the library are free; others are $8 at the venues themselves, available 30 minutes before the show. Tickets can also be pre-purchased online. For more information see the festival website at www.talkingpicturesfestival.org.