#KTQ50: Watch Parents and Thumbs Down for free all week

In 2016, several organizations in Chicago and around the country will host a series of screenings and events to celebrate Kartemquin’s 50th anniversary. We also invite you to watch all our films for free, week by week, at http://watch.kartemquin.com.

From today until next Friday, January 22, the free KTQ50 films are a double bill of Parents and Thumbs Down. Both released in 1968 as part of a series of films the nascent KTQ made for a Catholic Education Group, these two films were originally released on DVD in 2009 as the The Kartemquin Collection: Early Years, Vol 1.

In Parents, a Chicago parish youth group discusses issues of parental authority, growing up, and the struggle to communicate with their parents.

In Thumbs Down, a Catholic youth group on the Northwest side of Chicago holds an anti-war Mass and the confrontation reveals the deepening crisis of communication between their generation and that of their parents, priests and neighbors.

Thumbs Down "offers a great deal of understanding about the nature of a neighborhood that is often talked about in the most oversimplified way. It is also about us – our city, our neighbors – and that is good in a time when most Hollywood movies seem to be about imaginary people in another world... Temaner and Quinn are filmmakers and “inquiring reporters” with great insight, and they have a lot to tell us about ourselves." - Roger Ebert, 1968.

"Vintage artifacts from the bygone heydey of gritty 16mm activist doc-making, when idealism was sky-high, when when film classes made movies out of on-campus crises, and when active protest was doubly worth doing if you were doing it on film." - Michael Atkinson, Sight & Sound, 2011, reviewing the KTQ Early Years Vol 1 & and Vol 2 DVD.

"Beautiful meditations on youth and what that truly means... may very well be two of the most important documentaries for the younger generations to re-visit, or be introduced to for the first time. Absolutely universal, these films haven’t lost a step aesthetically or intellectually." - Joshua Brunsting, CriterionCast, 2013.

Free extras included with the free films:
- The original Thumbs Down Discussion Guide.
- The original Roger Ebert review of Thumbs Down and Inquiring Nuns from the Chicago Sun-Times, December 15, 1968.
- Trailer: KTQ Collective Volume 1 trailer.
- Photo: Thumbs Down film still.
- Original Volume 1 DVD cover.

Thumbs Down will be shown at Northwestern University's Mary & Leigh Block Museum of Art Cinema on January 28th at 7pm. Gordon Quinn will attend. Get more details.

Thumbs Down / Parents trailer from Kartemquin Films on Vimeo.

See the full #KTQ50 streaming schedule and more information at www.kartemquin.com/ktq50.

Other highlights of our 50th anniversary year will include:

  • A Milestones gala event on June 24, 2016 at the Harris Theater, preceded by a dinner reception at the Chicago Cultural Center. This evening will reunite and celebrate many of our filmmakers, subjects, and partners from across five decades. The Honorary Chair is Chaz Ebert. Contact Mo@kartemquin.com for tickets and sponsorship details.
  • A 50 years of Kartemquin art exhibit featuring historical photographs, artwork, and video and film mechanics. The exhibit will be open May 20, 2016 through August 20th.
  • Free online streaming of every Kartemquin film in chronological order week by week at http://watch.kartemquin.com, starting with the very first film, Home for Life (1966), on January 1, 2016.
  • Throughout 2016, monthly WTTW PBS broadcasts of our films.
  • Multiple retrospectives and premiere screenings across the nation, including at the UCLA Film & TV Archive in Los Angeles in fall 2016.
  • A series of Chicago screenings and events.
  • Various workshops, panels, and master classes hosted by our filmmakers and associates.

Read more about our plans and how we announced them, and please contact us to get involved.