The Chicago Underground Film Festival organizes and presents screenings throughout the year. Check back here for information on upcoming events. In The meantime check out some our past events.


May 20, 2016 8:00 PM at The Nightingale – 1084 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60642.

This Special Screening and Fundraising Party is $10 general admission, FREE for anyone who has a Festival Pass and FREE for members of IFP Chicago. All proceeds support and maintain the Chicago Underground Film Festival and ensures that we will be returning for many years to come, continuing as the longest-running underground film festival in the world.

Prior to the screening there will be a raffle! Purchase a ticket, support programming and exhibition of defiantly independent films and perhaps win a prize! Prizes include: Free tickets to The Vic Brew & View, CUFF Festival Passes, one of a kind posters by artist Mitch O’Connell, and many more to come! The Chicago Underground Film Festival proudly kicks off their 23rd year to present a special pre-fest screening of the third feature installment and world premiere of Ernest J. Ramon’s notorious and sinister Critical Paranoia series: Critical Paranoia: The Aquarian Conspiracy.

Critical Paranoia: The Aquarian Conspiracy

Ernest J. Ramon, Video, 2016, World Premiere

Everybody look children, what’s that sound? What if every song you’ve ever liked or listened to on the radio, every album you’ve ever bought downloaded or stole, was the product of an insidious military-industrial scenario intent upon cultivating a pop culture landscape capable of  brainwashing the population of America and indeed the entire world lock step in line with an evil agenda deeper and broader than any reform, revolution, or the most repugnant anti-human movement. Did journalist Hunter S. Thompson infiltrate the notorious Bohemian Grove Club and subsequently seal his fate as an illuminati puppet following a deep legacy marriage between CIA shadow agencies the mass media and youth culture, how many Paul McCartney’s are there? Is it just a coincidence that almost all so called rock and pop stars are products of high ranking military families? Who really wrote all of the Beatles songs and masterminded the counterculture and mainstream pop movements of the last 50 years? What’s the significance or importance of the number twenty-three and the true meaning of the Aquarian Conspiracy?  Creeping paranoia runs deep; what is happening here? And who or what is exactly behind it? -Ernest J. Ramon

The evening will begin with a program of short films by the following CUFF staff members:

  • Danielle Campbell
  • LJ Frezza
  • Tommy Heffron
  • Emily Oscarson
  • Adam Paradis
  • Aren Zolninger


Friday January 29, 2016 at Co-Prosperity Sphere 3219 S Morgan St, Chicago, IL 60608

This special screening will consist of the following award-winning and critically acclaimed short films by Chicago filmmakers which screened at the 22nd Chicago Underground Film Festival last May: ‘BITE RADIUS’ by Spencer Parsons, recently named by Newcity film Critic Ray Pride as one of the top five short films of 2015; the comedy ‘NIGHT OF THE BLOOD SQUATCH’ by Kenny Reed; The animated film ‘THE LINGERIE SHOW’ by Laura Harrison, winner of the festival’s Made In Chicago award which went on the screen at the prestigious New York Film Festival at Lincoln Center; The “video comic book†‘SOME SOUTHERN COUNTRY’ by Michael Paul Lopez and the moody horror short ‘VIOLETS’ by Jim Vendiola, winner of CUFF’s 2015 audience award. All filmmakers will be in attendance and participate in a post-screening discussion moderated by Nicole Bernardi-Reis, independent film producer and president of the board of IFP Chicago.

Doors will open at 7:00PM and the screening will begin 7:30PM. Admission is $7 -$10 sliding scale at the door.


Bite Radius

Spencer Parsons

30 min., Video, 2015, USA

“Last night Peyton had such a great time that he can’t even remember the murder he committed. So he tells a friend. Big mistake. Inspired by actual events.†– Spencer Parsons

Night of the Blood Squatch

Kenny Reed

22 min., Video, 2015, USA

“One night a man making a Bigfoot ‘documentary’ encounters a few other intense characters with their own issues to contend with.†– Kenny Reed

– Intermission –

The Lingerie Show (Made In Chicago Award 2015)

Laura Harrison

8 min., Video, 2014, USA

“A drug addict, Lorraine, attempts to entice her bisexual boyfriend Cesar away from his boyfriend, Wade, with a lingerie show she and her friends put together. An animated portrait of characters on the fringes of society.†– Laura Harrison

Some Southern Country

Michael Paul Lopez

18 min., Video, 2014, USA

“A 13-chapter video comic book, wherein a teenage boy experiences sexual adventures and overcomes obstacles of the heart atop a generic, racially ambiguous, American 80s world determined to perpetuate tribal war in a southern jungle. Green agents blackmail, torture, spy, cry and trash their bedrooms in a private high school while a concurrent narrative in text details the personal development of a cruel and horny teenager overcoming his fear of love. These conflicting narratives are rendered together with gradual color changes, hand-drawn illustrations, sound effects, synth and faux orchestral arrangements.†– Michael Lopez

Violets (Audience Award 2015)

Jim Vendiola

13 min., video, 2014, USA

“Two strange, reclusive sisters quietly await the advent of their secretly twisted plan. Inspired by true events.†– Jim Vendiola

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