CHOSEN was named one of seven candidates for the 2018 Golden Brick Award by Filmspotting, “the flagship film podcast.” The show’s producers explain the award: "Inspired by writer/director Rian Johnson's debut movie BRICK—and the show's near-constant praise of it—every year Filmspotting champions its favorite overlooked/under-the-radar films with the Golden Brick Awards." Criteria for the award includes a clear directorial vision/artistic ambition.
Thank you very much, Filmspotting!
REVIEWS OF CHOSEN
The Library Journal gives chosen a Star rating — its highest recommendation
The text in the photo of the Oct. 15, 2018 review reads:
*"Chosen: Custody of the Eyes. 107 min. Abbie Reese, Migrant Artist Prods., www.chosenthefilm.com. 2018. DVD UPC 888295694667. $250. Public performance; home use $25. RELIGION
"Independent writer and filmmaker Reese offers in video a story similar to one she told in her oral history of cloistered nuns (Dedicated to God) and much to the same effect, sensitively entering into the world of the cloistered convent. She enlists the active collaboration of a blogger who joined the Poor Clares and, with the novice mistress, filmed much of the life behind the walls. Viewers see the environment from the perspective of the young nun as she grows in her knowledge of the community and of herself, musing on the meaning of it all. Sometimes the camera is simply attached to her as she goes about her daily tasks. Other times, there are more purposeful shots. Such an intimate portrait would rarely be allowed in a community that cherishes anonymity, but Reese had the confidence of the nuns to such an extent that viewers are allowed full access, including the playfulness, to a group of very dedicated but secluded nuns.
"VERDICT: A rare, intimate look into a life normally hidden and of a young woman who is entering into that future.—Augustine J. Curley, Newark Abbey, NJ"
SELECT THEATRICAL SCREENINGS
UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO: October 27
Doc Films | Max Palevsky Cinema
Sponsored by The University of Chicago Divinity School Martin Marty Center for the Public Understanding of Religion
Many thanks to Medievalist Willemiena Otten for moderating an audience discussion with Director Abbie Reese
IRELAND PREMIERE: July 5
Irish Film Institute – Temple Bar, Dublin
Many thanks to Roger Childs, RTÉ Editor of Religious Programmes
for moderating the audience discussion with Director Abbie Reese
NORTHERN IRELAND THEATRICAL PREMIERE: July 1
Strand Arts Centre, Belfast
U.K. SCREENING: June 28
Queen's University Belfast
Dangerous Oral Histories, a joint conference of the Oral History Society and Oral History Network of Ireland
CHICAGO PREMIERE: May 25-31
Gene Siskel Film Center
Many thanks to filmmaker Anahita Ghazvinizadeh and UChicago Magazine editor Laura Demanski
for moderating audience discussions with Director Abbie Reese
ROCKFORD, ILL. PREMIERE: March 18 & April 22
The Nordlof Center
(Both screenings in the 286-seat theater were sold out a week in advance)
You can also watch this 2.5-minute trailer on YouTube at http://bit.ly/ChosenthefilmTrailer
"I've watched it twice and honestly - wow. I love it. The style is perfect; the editing maintains pace and the content is very interesting and private without seeming either too observational or too intruding. Heather is a fantastic character and her enthusiasm and self-awareness shine throughout the project."
– Beckie Stocchetti, Executive Director of the Hawaii International Film Festival
"There is a beauty in the personal, handmade quality of this film that made one feel so close to the subject. It felt like we were being told a secret, contemplating the life of those on screen with a muted intensity — almost in a way similar to a prayer."
– Donna Kozloskie, Features Programmer for Citizen Jane Film Festival
"This feature gives a rare insight into the life of such a secluded religious order and one can only appreciate and respect the choice these women make in the search of their destiny and purpose in life."
– Cleveland International Film Festival