independent film

Spring has sprung, and if you feel like springing for movie tickets this weekend, our indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a few ideas for you.

Cynthia Haines:

  • What We Do In The Shadows
  • Diplomacy
  • Red Army

Steve Walker:

  • Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalam
  • '71
  • Diplomacy

It's starting to feel like spring, and if you want to celebrate the warmer weather, Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have some ideas for you.

Cynthia Haines:

  • Diplomacy
  • Mr. Turner
  • Red Army

Steve Walker:

This story is part of True/False Conversations, a series of in-depth interviews with the filmmakers of this year’s True/False Fest.  Find the rest of them here or download the podcast on iTunes.

Back in 2008 filmmaker Ed Cunningham heard a strange story on the news about a man who bought a barbecue smoker at an auction and found a severed human leg inside. A legal battle ensued between the finder of the foot and the man it once belonged to.


The Man who is ‘Almost There’

Mar 6, 2015

This story is part of True/False Conversations, a series of in-depth interviews with the filmmakers of this year’s True/False Festival.  Find the rest of them here or download the podcast on iTunes.

83-year-old artist Peter Anton was only known in his community of East Chicago before filmmakers Dan Rybicky and Aaron Wickenden stumbled into his life. The film “Almost There” follows Anton as the filmmakers become his caretakers and advocates for his art exhibit, which quickly becomes controversial.


  In two of the films Up to Date's  indie, foreign and documentary film critics discuss, vampires dress up for nightclubs, and the Irish fairytale legend of the selkies comes to life. We also shine a light on the experience of living with Alzheimer's disease and what it's like to deal with Russian bureaucracy.

Here's a list of the films:

The weather may be cold, but area theaters are showing some movies that are red hot. Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have some ideas that might chase that chill away.

Cynthia Haines:

  • Leviathan
  • What We Do In The Shadows
  • Song of the Sea

Steve Walker:

Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics are getting into the Oscar spirit. If you want to do the same, check out one of their favorites playing on area screens.

Cynthia Haines:

  • Mr. Turner
  • Two Days, One Night
  • Song of the Sea

Steve Walker:

  • Still Alice
  • Mr. Turner
  • Two Days, One Night

Whether you want to celebrate Valentine's Day with dinner and a movie or distract yourself from the day of Cupid, Up to Date's indie, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few ideas of what you can see on the silver screen.

Cynthia Haines:  

  • Two Days, One Night
  • Mr. Turner 
  • Oscar-nominated short films

Steve Walker:

One woman is given the weekend to convince her co-workers to give up their bonuses or lose her job, and another becomes obsessed with the suicide of a member in her support group. On Friday's Up To Date, our independent, foreign, and documentary film critics discuss these films and other movies playing now, plus the Oscar nominated live action, documentary, and animated shorts.  Films opening today:

  • Two Days, One Night

Films already showing:

IFC Films

With the Academy Awards quickly approaching on Feb. 22, it may be just the weekend to head out to the theaters to see some of the nominees. Up To Date's Indie, Foreign, and Documentary film critics offer their Oscar nominated suggestions. 

Cynthia Haines:

  • Two Days, One Night
  • Oscar-Nominated Live Action Short Films
  • Boyhood 

Steve Walker:

If you want to feel a little more knowledgeable on Oscar night, or even if you just want some good weekend entertainment, Up to Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics have a few suggestions for you.

Cynthia Haines

  • 2015 Oscar-Nominated Shorts
  • Boyhood
  • Selma

Steve Walker

  • A Most Violent Year
  • Amira & Sam
  • 2015 Oscar Nominated Shorts: Live Action
Paramount Pictures

The Academy has announced it's picks for this year's Oscars. Now, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary critics announce their picks to see this weekend. Drumroll please...

Cynthia Haines:

  • Selma
  • Wild
  • American Sniper

Steve Walker:

It's controversial, it has the nation talking, but is it good? 

On Friday's Up To Date, the indie, foreign and documentary film critics discuss the controversy surrounding The Interview and weigh in on its quality. Plus, they review  Paul Thomas Anderson's new film Inherent Vice, and check out the story of the terrifying monster of a boy's dream come to life. 

Fox Searchlight

From a thousand-mile journey of self-exploration to a raunchy bromance that has the nation talking, Up To Date's indie, foreign and documentary film critics suggest some films they think are worth heading to the theaters this weekend:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Boyhood
  • The Interview
  • Whiplash 

Steve Walker:

The Best Independent, Documentary And Foreign Films of 2014

Dec 26, 2014
IFC Entertainment

For those who prefer art houses for their film viewing, it's been a very good year. From the class system that develops on a train of the future to musician Nick Cave marking his 20,000th day on the planet to a young novitiate nun in 1960s Poland,  independent, documentary and foreign filmmakers have given moviegoers plenty to choose from.

Wikimedia Commons

Freedom has prevailed, according to Kansas City movie theaters that said they’ll be screening The Interview starting on Christmas Day.

Looking for a break from the holiday craziness? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few suggestions for you:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Wild
  • Birdman
  • St. Vincent

Steve Walker:

  • Wild
  • The Theory of Everything 
  • The Babadook
American Experience Films/PBS

If the grey skies are getting you down, why not take a trip to the cinema to lift the gloom? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few recommendations for you:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Force Majeur
  • Birdman
  • Last Days in Vietnam

Steve Walker:

Still recovering from Thanksgiving? Try a good film for your relaxation this weekend. Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few recommendations for you:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Force Majeure
  • Nightcrawler
  • Whiplash

Steve Walker:

Life on the open prairie can drive you crazy, and Tommy Lee Jones knows it in his latest flick.

On Friday's Up to Date, our independent, foreign and documentary film critics review The Homesman, as well as a new Stephen Hawking biopic, and we check out the story of a scramble to survive an avalanche-- and what that can do to a family.

Also on the agenda: our critics share their top 10 films of the year.

Films discussed during the program:

With Thanksgiving approaching, lots of movies are opening. If you're looking for an alternative to the latest blockbuster,  check out these suggestions from Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Birdman
  • Skeleton Twins
  • Citizenfour

Steve Walker:

The weather's awfully cold, but movie theaters should be nice and toasty this weekend. Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics have a few suggestions for you once you get there:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Birdman
  • St. Vincent
  • Citizenfour

Steve Walker:

  • Citizenfour
  • Nightcrawler
  • Rosewater

Take the chill out of the autumn air with a good film this weekend and check out these recommendations from Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics:

Cynthia Haines:

  • Skeleton Twins
  • St. Vincent
  • Birdman

Steve Walker:

A marriage proposal leads one woman to hiding out in the home of her 16-year-old best friend, and a young boy finds an unlikely friend in the bawdy, hedonistic veteran next door.

On Friday's Up to Date, our indie, documentary and foreign film critics are back to review the latest films showing on area screens. We also look at the story of Edward Snowden and how an actor tries to make a comeback on Broadway.

The films:

Feeling festive with the Halloween weekend? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorite films showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines: 

  • Birdman
  • St. Vincent
  • Rudderless

Steve Walker: 

The World Series doesn't start until Tuesday, but area theaters have movies ready now. Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorite films showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • The Skeleton Twins
  • The Drop
  • The Green Prince

Steve Walker: 

Music Box Films

Is selling one’s soul to a parent’s worst enemy justified if it means avoiding torture, prison, or much worse? Such is the quandary at the crux of Nadav Schirman’s documentary The Green Prince, a tense and dense examination into how Mosab Hassan Yousef, a young Palestinian whose father was a founder of Hamas, ended up an informant for the Israeli security force known as Shin Bet. By the time viewers reach its bittersweet climax, prior documentaries about guarded family secrets will seem like Saturday-morning cartoons.

Looking for films to see when you're not glued to the Royals games? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorite films showing on area screens:

Steve Walker:

Cynthia Haines

Suicidal siblings become stronger together, Paris isn't the quite paradise you might think and we get an inside look at a money-laundering operation in films showing on area screens this week.

On Friday's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with film critics Cynthia Haines, Steve Walker and Bob Butler to get their opinions on these  films:

Looking for a great way to get through a cold, rainy weekend? Up to Date's independent, foreign, and documentary film critics share their favorite films showing on area screens:

Cynthia Haines:

  • The Skeleton Twins
  • The Drop
  • One Chance 

Steve Walker:

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