Via Zoom: Filmmaker Jack C. Newell on His New Film ‘Monuments’

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CHICAGO – The evolution of the “local filmmaker” always seems to be defined through where that person is. Jack C. Newell appears to not be measured by time and place, but as a filmmaker of artistic vision with a basis in love. His latest film, “Monuments,” opens June 4th, 2021, through the Gene Siskel Film Center virtual cinema.

Written and directed by Newell, “Monuments” is a comedy about grief with a dash of hopeless romance and a sprinkling of adventure, this melange is a quintessential indie road movie, featuring expansive cinematography and an unexpected musical score by acclaimed Takénobu. Filmed on location partly in Chicago, “Monuments” brings together an eclectic cast led by David Sullivan and Marguerite Moreau as a devoted couple whose love cannot be diminished by death. The family of Moreau’s character has other plans, and the comic element of the film comes from that conflict.

’Monuments,’ Written and Directed by Jack C. Newell (inset)
Photo credit: Row House Films has portrayed Jack C. Newell through his filmmaker journey. From his beginnings at the 2010 Chicago International Film Festival with ”Typing” through his feature films ”Close Quarters”, ”Open Tables” and ”42 Grams” the director continues to evolve. Currently, he continues to influence Chicago culture as Programming Director at The Second City film school, in addition to facilitating art events like the Wabash Lights and ”Destroy Your Art,” with wife Rebecca Fons … who along with her mother Marianne has a “story by” credit.

In PART ONE of an interview Via Zoom with Patrick McDonald of, writer/director Jack C. Newell talks about the origins of “Monuments” and a dance sequence inspired by Spike Jones …

In PART TWO, Newell reflects on his influences and Chicago actors …

“Monuments” premieres June 4th and will be available through the Gene Siskel Film Center virtual/online cinema and select theaters (see local listings). Click here for complete details. Featuring David Sullivan, Marguerite Moreau, Javier Muñoz, David Pasquesi, Richard Cotovsky, Thomas Kelly and Joel Murray. Written and directed by Jack C. Newell. Not Rated. senior staff writer Patrick McDonald

Editor, Film Writer

© 2021 Patrick McDonald,

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