Review: Heartland Shorts Program 1 (Indiana Spotlight)

By Brandon Kratkoczki Hoosier pride! Hoo boy! I love the big corn state! I love the triangle vroom vrooms that go in 500 circles a year and no more! I have fond memories of going to our booming, candy-coated state capital! Have you ever sat down and thought of all of the famous people from Indiana, like California Joe and Colorado Susan? In all seriousness, … Continue reading Review: Heartland Shorts Program 1 (Indiana Spotlight)

Review: ‘We Love You, Sally Carmichael!’

By Kyle Wooldridge We’ve all heard of Twilight right? Mega popular book series-turned movie series? Unless you lived under a rock for the last two decades, I’m sure you’ve heard a thing or two about it. Well, have you ever thought, “man Twilight is cool, but you know what would be cooler? If it was about a merman instead of a vampire!” If that’s the … Continue reading Review: ‘We Love You, Sally Carmichael!’

Review: ‘The Mad Whale’

By Brandon Kratkoczki Finally.   I’ve been waiting all of Heartland 2017 for something to hit me the way The Mad Whale hit me. Don’t get me wrong, there have been several films over the course of the festival that I have really enjoyed. Heartland is a wonderful festival filled with inspirational stories and engaging narratives, but I was waiting for a sucker punch. I … Continue reading Review: ‘The Mad Whale’

Review: ‘The Last Laugh’

By Kyle Wooldridge The old saying goes, “tragedy + time = comedy,” but is this really the case? Is it ever appropriate to joke about tragedy? If so, how much time needs to pass before it is appropriate? These are the kinds of questions that comedians have to ask themselves every day in order to do what they do. One of the biggest and most … Continue reading Review: ‘The Last Laugh’

News: Heartland Film Critics Panel

By Anthony Miglieri In addition to attending a special screening of the 2014 Roger Ebert documentary Life Itself (reviewed here) and conducting a Q&A afterwards, the late Ebert’s wife, Chaz Ebert, also moderated a discussion on film criticism at the Heartland Film Festival 2017. On the panel, Mrs. Ebert; who herself is the CEO of, Ebert Digital LLC, and Ebert Productions, among several other positions; was … Continue reading News: Heartland Film Critics Panel

Review: ‘The Girl Who Invented Kissing’

By Madyson McGill On my very first night ever at the Heartland Film Festival, my very first movie was a little number called The Girl Who Invented Kissing, written and directed by Tom Sierchio. I went in thinking it would be a general independent film with some light hearted moments, some touching moments, but nothing too over-the-top dramatic. While it is all of that, I honestly … Continue reading Review: ‘The Girl Who Invented Kissing’

Review: ‘The Gamble House’

By Brandon Kratkoczki I had to wait in the rush line to get my Gamble House ticket, which means that they had sold out the screening and were getting together a second theater so that more audiences would be able to see it. I was intrigued: everyone was really pooping his or her pants about this documentary about old-school architecture, huh? This screening is gonna … Continue reading Review: ‘The Gamble House’

Review: ‘Food Evolution’

By Eli Brunsman Good documentaries make me want to tell everyone, “Hey! Please check this out!” I literally can’t shut up after watching a film that makes me want to go out and change the world. As soon as I saw Food Evolution at Heartland, I texted several people about it. Even if I already knew that this Neil DeGrasse Tyson-narrated film would probably be … Continue reading Review: ‘Food Evolution’

Review: ‘Life Itself’

By Anthony Miglieri When I was a kid, I read Roger Ebert’s reviews simply because my family happened to get the Chicago Sun-Times paper. Sure, I had had my favorite movies at different points in my life—Thomas and the Magic Railroad (a 1-star film according to Ebert), Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and Rocky, to name a few early stages—but I had never known analysis and reverence … Continue reading Review: ‘Life Itself’

Review: ‘Blank 13’

By Brandon Kratkoczki The title of Blank 13 refers to the number of years our main character’s father has been absent from his life. Their reconnection, unfortunately, is brought about by the father’s declining health at the hands of cancer. With this film, first-time director Takumi Saito has created a beautifully told story, one of heartbreak, loss, and finding something that represents forgiveness. Though the … Continue reading Review: ‘Blank 13’