Belleville Native and film Producer/Actor Ted Trent has teamed up with Director/Writer Dan Steadman, to bring us a fantastic family film that touches the soul and that showcases areas that many of us on the EASTSIDE call home, with their much anticipated independent film – BELLEVILLE.

As we meet a strange and disoriented Neila, (played by Ted Trent) he has landed here on earth, only to be confronted by a mean spirited woman named Arlene (played by Cooper Shaw).  Neila hurries to get away from this not-so-nice human and finds his way to the home of local farmer, turned recluse, Willie (played by Tim O’Leary).  Willie isn’t sure what to think of Neila, or his very peculiar behavior, but is enjoying his company none the less.  When Neila decides to venture into town, he engages many of the local townsfolk, who also notice he seems a little off,  as they too begin to question,  “What is this Neila person really all about? “

Realizing that his friend Willie is in great pain over the unexpected death of his wife, Neila decides to engage as many people about town as possible, hoping he can convince them to visit Willie at his farm, as a way to get him out of this “funk” he seems to be trapped in……

Will Neila be able to make his way in this new world he knows little about?  Will Willie confide in Neila things he hasn’t shared with anyone else for quite some time?  Will Arlene get her way, and make sure that Neila goes back to “wherever it is he came from?”  Or will the friendship between Willie and Neila turn into something neither of them ever expected?

I give BELLEVILLE 4 out of 5 stars:  I have to admit it was fantastic seeing a native of my home town, Ted Trent, up on the big screen, and being a part of the RED CARPET Event held in our home town of BELLEVILLE, was a dream come true!  Viewing the places and people I have known practically my whole life on the big screen did bring a big smile to my face, but as I watched this film unfold, it became so much more than just “old home week” for me!  Dan Steadman’s storyline and the characters he created were as heartwarming and real as it gets. Tim O’Leary and Cooper Shaw were also perfectly cast in their roles – and apparently the American Movie Awards thought so too – as Shaw received the Best Supporting Actress nod from them for this feature film.  I asked my 14 year old to join me to see the premier, and she too shared how much she enjoyed watching Belleville – and it’s hard to impress anyone at this age – so Bravo to these independent film makers.  Due to be re-released at 13 Wehrenberg Theaters on September  of this year  (please check for theaters and show times)  Belleville is one of those films that you will definitely want to catch in the coming weeks, as it truly is the most heartwarming film I’ve seen in quite some time.  I must also share that even though it is a family film – due to the violence portrayed in a portion of the film, it may not be suitable for children under 10 years of age.  The Dynamic Duo of Ted Trent Studios and Circa 87 Productions was apparently a match made in heaven, as Ted and Dan have truly put together a masterpiece with this film.  And don’t forget to watch for the release of their new much anticipated Holiday film – EXPECT DELAYS – which from what I’ve been privy to see thus far, looks like it too is going to be a film you won’t want to miss 😉

Kathy Kaiser



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