June 16, 2011

AROUND TOWN: Telling the Nelson Algren Story

One underlying theme in Chicago filmmaker Michael Caplan's work is identity. Whether he's exploring his father's story as a young student at a unique school in 1930s Germany ("Stones from the Soil"), or his friend Eugene Burger's story as magic's mystic guru ("A Magical Vision"), or David Drake's life as a gay man coming of age in the 1990s ("The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me"), Michael finds riveting ways to reveal the many and layered truths of his subjects. That's why I'm especially excited about the newest subject he's tackling: Nelson Algren. If you are a Chicago writer, you live in the shadow of Algren, author of the iconic, "Chicago, City on the Make" and winner of the first National Book Award for his novel, "The Man with the Golden Arm." And Michael Caplan is just the filmmaker to tell the Nelson Algren story. If you love Algren, if you love insightful film-making, if you love gritty Chicago writing, I invite you to join me in helping Michael finish his movie by supporting his Kickstarter campaign. Your $25 or more can ensure that this chapter of great Chicago writing -- and a great Chicago writer -- gets its due. You can watch the movie trailer here. Thank you for your consideration.


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