5 Milwaukee-Made Film Fest Movies We Can’t Wait to See

This year at the Milwaukee Film Festival, I’m going to concentrate on movies with Milwaukee connections. What the heck – that’s the name of the fest, right?

Read all of our Milwaukee Film Fest 2018 coverage here.


Science Fair

This documentary, a festival favorite at Sundance this year, is a loving look at the 1,700 sometimes-zany high school geniuses from 78 countries competing at the annual International Science and Engineering Fair. It’s co-produced by Milwaukee native Cristina Costantini, daughter of Mario and Cathy of La Lune Collection furniture in Riverwest; Cristina was a fair competitor when she was a student at University School of Milwaukee.


  • Thursday, Oct. 18 | 7 p.m. | Oriental Theatre Main
  • Sunday, Oct. 21 | 11 a.m. | Oriental Theatre East


Invisible Lines

This showing is the premiere of a compilation of 88Nine Radio’s web-based series of “frank, unscripted conversation about segregation, racism and discrimination from a diverse pool of Milwaukeeans (activists, artists, students and historians all participate).” I’m seeing this because this is the work we have to do now in this city.


  • Saturday, Oct. 27 | 3:30 p.m. | Oriental Theatre Main


The Milwaukee Show I

I’m excited to see this collection of short subjects, including The Chase Key, a 17-minute investigation of the Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office; Three Neighborhoods: People, Place, Purpose, a 12-minute short by Wes Tank and longtime local observer Adam Carr; and The Water Will Carry Us Home, a parable of the Middle Passage by Gabrielle Tesfaye.


  • Monday, Oct. 22 | 8 p.m. | Oriental Theatre Main


Riverwest Film & Video

This documentary spotlights the storefront on East Center Street that is home to a neighborhood radio station and serves as a gathering place for the UW-Milwaukee Department of Film community.


  • Friday, Oct. 19 | 4 p.m. | Times Cinema
  • Wednesday, Oct. 24 | 6:30 p.m. | Oriental Theatre East
  • Wednesday, Oct. 31 | 4 p.m. | Oriental Theatre East


Lake Michigan Monster

And just for fun, this goofy-sounding, black-and-white comedy by Ryland Tews, according to the Milwaukee Film website, “harkens back to creature features of yore with a briny aesthetic all its own.”


  • Wednesday, Oct. 24 | 3:30 p.m.| Oriental Theatre West
  • Monday, Oct. 29 | 9 p.m. | Jan Serr Studio Cinema
  • Wednesday, Oct. 31 | 9:45 p.m.| Oriental Theatre Main



Tom Tolan is managing editor at Milwaukee Magazine, where he's worked since January 2016. He spent 24 years at The Milwaukee Journal and the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel as a copy editor, assistant metro editor and reporter. He lives in Shorewood.