What better stamp of approval for a film than an audience award? As you peruse your viewing options for this weekend, consider adding the Audience Award Winner from the latest Nashville Film Festival to the slate. In Jack Newell’s charming new road trip comedy, MONUMENTS, a young widower side steps grief, loss, and familial dysfunction when he steals his wife’s ashes and sets off on an impulsive odyssey through America’s heartland.
“MONUMENTS is incredibly timely,” Newell told SCREEN. “It’s a story about a man coming to terms with the loss of his wife – his love – and the journey of grief. Obviously, when we made this film we didn’t know what was going to happen to all of us in 2020, but that being said, we’ve made a film that really speaks to the collective trauma and grief that we’ve all experienced over the last year. It does it in an authentic and uplifting way.”
Take a look at the trailer for MONUMENTS then purchase your tickets to enjoy the film at home or in the theater this weekend…
In MONUMENTS, Ted (David Sullivan) encounters a cast of eccentric characters, including his rival Howl (Javier Muñoz), who direct and misdirect him on his mission to find something he’d lost long before the death of his wife Laura (Marguerite Moreau).
A Long and Rewarding Road for This Roadtrip Comedy
Newell wrote and directed the film, and produced the feature alongside Independent Film Alliance Chicago (IFA) Co-Founder Angie Gaffney. “To me, it was the first time where I was with the script from the very, very beginning,” Gaffney told SCREEN. “Working alongside Jack for three or four years now has been an incredibly creative, collaborative process. Using my creative voice as a producer – rather than just my production skills – has changed the way I approach my involvement in projects.”
MONUMENTS was shot in Chicago and Boulder, Colorado in October of 2018, with support from Chicago Media Angels. Executive Producers include Charles Leslie and Ed Toolis. “It was a very ambitious production for our budget size, and thanks to our incredible cast and crew, we were able to pull it off,” Gaffney told SCREEN. “I’m endlessly grateful for their dedication and long hours.”
MONUMENTS infuses humor and hope into a story of mourning, loss, and marriage to create one of the best feel good indie films of 2021. Click here for in-person and virtual screenings across the country for this indie feature.
Newell concluded, “We set out to make a film that felt a bit more timeless, it’s a unique take on a tragic event, and so it’s funny because by trying to make something that can last forever, we’ve actually made something that’s perfect for right now.”