film

This radiation warning sign is one of many posted on the chain link fence surrounding part of the West Lake Landfill in Bridgeton, Mo.
Sarah Skiold-Hanlin | St. Louis Public Radio

This year, 26 St. Louis-produced films will appear alongside films from around the world at the St. Louis International Film Festival. The organization’s Artistic Director Chris Clark said quality, not just location, was the primary factor affecting what films would be included in the November programming.

“They are like top gun. They are the best of the best,” he said. “These are things that we would be proud to recommend and could stand toe to toe in other festivals anywhere.”

From "Soko Sonko"
Washington University

The journey of finding yourself, the possibility of a pregnant man and a madcap trip to a hair stylist are all themes in this weekend’s African Film Festival at St. Louis’ Washington University.

Mike Rohlfing

Cinema St. Louis’ 2014 St. Louis Filmmaker's Showcase kicks off Sunday, July 13, and runs through Thursday, July 17.

Each year, Cinema St. Louis gets about 120 submissions from both professional and amateur filmmakers. Chris Clark, artistic director of the organization, says the most important criteria is whether the filmmakers have told a good story and told it in a cohesive way. 

Courtesy of The Archives of the University City Public Library

This year marks two anniversaries from St. Louis’ film history: it is the 90th anniversary of the Tivoli Theater, and the 70th anniversary of Meet Me in St. Louis, which is perhaps the film that most often comes to mind when St. Louis is mentioned. Though Meet Me in St. Louis was shot entirely outside of the city, many pictures, both before and after the Judy Garland classic, were filmed here. Today on St. Louis on the Air we discussed a few of them, and the people who contributed to the films we love.

(Amanda Honigfort/St. Louis Public Radio)

The Judy Garland classic Meet Me In St. Louis had its world premiere in St. Louis on Nov. 22, 1944, but it still draws a crowd. On May 2, the Missouri History Museum hosted a Meet Me in St. Louis film screening and sing-a-long in conjunction with the film’s 70th anniversary and their 250 in 250 exhibit. 

Listen to what the film means to some of the fans attending the sing-a-long:

Family photo

People who attend the Tivoli Theatre, the majestic edifice that has graced the University City Loop since 1924, expect certain things. They expect nostalgic surroundings. They expect to see movies with purpose. They expect to be greeted by John Thompson.

For the past 35 years, Mr. Thompson did not disappoint. He died Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014. He was 74.

“It will be very sad the first time we walk through the doors (of the Tivoli) and John’s not there,” said Cliff Froehlich, executive director of Cinema St. Louis. “His absence will be very seriously felt.”

(Courtesy Cinema St. Louis)

Two of the film directors currently screening films at the St. Louis International Film Festival have closer ties than most to St. Louis. Peter Bolte and Brian Jun both grew up in the St. Louis region. Both are graduates of Webster University, and both shot their films on location in St. Louis and Southern Illinois.

(Courtesy Cinema St. Louis)

The 22nd Annual St. Louis International Film Festival begins November 14th. More than 300 films will be screened over a period of ten days.

Courtes of Tony Nitko/Rustic Lantern Films

Local production company Rustic Lantern Films has recently released their debut movie called "Lake Windfall," about five friends on a camping trip that turns disastrous. 

(via Flickr/Teemu008)

Nearly 60 years ago this week, Washington University launched a 3-year, $20 million capital campaign – at the time, the second-largest by an American university.         

The fundraising effort included a short film called "The Second Century." Its director was Charles Guggenheim, who would later gain fame as a documentarian.

Tim Lloyd / St. Louis Public Radio

"If it wasn't here, we wouldn't have anywhere to go."

About a dozen people mill around the small lobby of the Senate Theater in Elsberry, Mo., a little town about an hour north of St. Louis.

(via YouTube screen capture)

Filmmaker Phillip Andrew Morton returned to the north St. Louis County community of Spanish Lake in 2007 to find his boyhood home abandoned and his elementary school empty.

He decided to make a documentary to explore what had happened to his hometown, including the underlying causes of “white flight” from the area.

Called simply “Spanish Lake," the documentary is expected to be released this summer.

A sneak peak of the film will be shown at the Open/Closed and Shuttered Flim Fest in April.

St. Louis Public Radio’s Maria Altman spoke with Morton and we have a summary of their conversation - and a trailer of the film - for you here.

(Screen captures/press kits/ compiled by Kelsey Proud/St. Louis Public Radio)

It’s been a good year for documentary films focused on issues in St. Louis and for local filmmakers. “The Pruitt-Igoe Myth,” about the urban housing complex of the 1950s and 60s; “Brick by Chance and Fortune,” which looks at St. Louis’ architectural heritage; “The Gray Seasons,” about a four-year span with the Saint Louis University women’s basketball team; and "Give a Damn?," the story of three St. Louisians who explore the issue of poverty across three continents; have all been popular at film festivals in 2011.

As part of St. Louis Public Radio’s series, “A Good Year”, Bill Raack spoke with Cliff Froehlich, the executive director of Cinema St. Louis. Here's a summary of their conversation: 

(via Flickr/Ryan Baxter Photography)

An upcoming film festival in suburban St. Louis will offer something a little bit different.

The filmmakers are all students in the Parkway School District. Their works will be shown April 27 at Logan College.

The shortest of the films are under a minute. One features a day in the life of a first-grader.

In another, a third-grader tells the story of bumping into a snake while bobbing in the water. He narrates the story while his pictures scroll across the screen.

(Flickr Creative Commons User John Steven Fernandez)

Film critics in St. Louis are getting a jump on the foreign journalists that decide the Golden Globe award winners. While the nominees for 2010 Globes will be announced tomorrow, the St. Louis Film Critics have announced their list today.

The St. Louis nominees for Best Picture are:

  • Black Swan
  • The Fighter
  • Inception
  • The King's Speech
  • The Social Network

Best Actor nominees are: