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American Movie 

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American Movie

Wisconsin filmmaker Mark Borchardt tries to raise money for a feature by finishing a short called Coven in this intimate documentary directed and shot by Chris Smith (American Job). Smith and producer Sarah Price, who recorded the sound, are unseen as they capture what appears to be the raw experience of the sometimes depressive Borchardt and his troupe of wavering supporters. Yet the filmmakers' presence is felt in the movie's refusal to dismiss Borchardt's ambitions or exalt them. Often coming across as simultaneously out of control and self-possessed, Borchardt can't have been an easy target, but the filmmakers seem to have nailed him. Music Box, Friday through Thursday, January 21 through 27.

--Lisa Alspector

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The Chicago Sound Show Smart Museum of Art
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