I have a deep love for movies.

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There's a unique experience in being told a story on the silver screen. In my younger years, I often wondered about the lives of actors, actresses, directors, and producers. Back then, with no TMZ or internet, our imagination filled in the blanks.

What is a movie set like? How does the magic happen? As I grew older, the mystique began to fade, and we learned more about the intricacies of movie making and the real lives behind the scenes. It might have diminished the fantasy, but my interest in the topic remained.

When I heard about a movie being filmed in New Milford called "Candlewood," my colleagues and I decided to follow the process every step of the way. Fortunately, the creators, Myke "Foo" Furhman (Director/Producer) & Victoria Flores-Argue (Writer/Producer), were willing to share their journey with us on the I-95 Morning Show.

We interviewed them before filming began and continued to cover the story through all its phases. They even invited me to the set, which was a fascinating experience.

The day finally arrived when they were ready to unveil "Candlewood" to the world, starting with New Milford. A special deal with the Bank Street Theater allowed locals and contributors the first look.

The world premiere was a grand affair on Saturday night, complete with a red carpet, exclusive screening, and an after-party with the entire cast and crew. Myke and Victoria graciously invited I95 to cover the event, and here are some snapshots from that evening.

Exclusive Film Review: Unveiling the Magic of 'Candlewood' - Red Carpet Glamour and After-Party Extravaganza

The 'Candlewood' film debuted at the Bank Street Theater in New Milford this past weekend. Here is a look around the red carpet, the after-party and beyond.

Gallery Credit: Lou Milano

REVIEW:

I've never attempted a review before, but I'll give it a shot. Victoria's writing was original, sharp, and pleasantly surprising. Drawing from her personal experiences and anxieties about being an outsider in New Milford, she crafted an exaggerated & entertaining take on clashing cultures.

Victoria
Victoria
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The movie explores what happens when country folk meet entitled city slickers. How is this invading force perceived by the people who built the community? Are the outsiders seen as enemies threatening tradition and the community's foundation? Victoria raises and answers these questions skillfully.

Lou Milano
Lou Milano
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Myke's direction and vision shine in every frame. He ensures that you never forget New Milford is a real place with real people deeply connected to it. I called it his love letter to the "Best Town in the USA" when Myke joined us on the I95 Morning Show. His wit is evident throughout the movie.

Lisann Valentin
Lisann Valentin
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The cast and crew poured their hearts into the project, and it shows on screen. Lisann Valentin delivers a powerful performance as Veronica, showcasing dedication in challenging scenes. If you want a good example of her dedication just look at the scene where a glass of water is forced down her throat as she fights for freedom while kicking and screaming.

Joel Bryant - Indigogo
Joel Bryant - Indigogo
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Joel Bryant impressively embodies various facets in one character, seamlessly transitioning between funny, menacing, and vulnerable. His portrayal of a dad navigating the challenges of a blended family resonates. I know what that blended family thing looks like, he got it right.

Isable Lysiak and Coulter Ibanez shine as the kids, depicting the complexities of step-sibling relationships.

Candlewood Film
Candlewood Film
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Jeffrey Alan Solomon, portraying Eli Boardman, stands out with an amazing performance. Talking to him on set and at the after-party, it's clear he brought the character to life, making Eli relatable.

Candlewood Film
Candlewood Film
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After witnessing the movie and understanding some of its behind-the-scenes elements, my respect for filmmakers and actors has grown. They built a world viewers could identify with, starting from scratch. The movie's success is not just theirs; it's also a win for New Milford.

This film has the potential to bring the community together, much like the impact of the Mr. Deeds production over twenty years ago. The attention to detail and the care put into the movie give the people of New Milford something to call their own without excluding a wider audience.

I particularly admire the way the movie concludes. I've never seen a man walk with such confidence and strength. It was a powerful stride that perfectly closed out the movie.

On Monday Myke "Foo" Furhman came into the studio to talk about making the film.

Lou Milano Hasty Selfie
Lou Milano Hasty Selfie
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The entire chat is available on the Ethan, Lou & Large Dave Show Podcast on Apple & Spotify

Exclusive Photos, Videos, and Interviews on the Set of New Milford Horror Movie

"Candlewood" is a horror film that just finished filming in New Milford, CT. This is how the filmmakers described the project on their Indiegogo: 
 
"Candlewood is the first movie of three in the psychological/horror feature film franchise. A blended family moves from the city to a small town in Connecticut, where a local urban legend adds chaos and terror to an already fragile family dynamic. The staunch patriarch, who desperately wants his family to not see him as a failure but as the father that did everything, he could to keep his family together through difficult times. Candlewood follows a family leaving New York City for a simpler life in the country town of New Milford, CT. The haunting and mysterious true stories of missing hikers near a popular state park, Lover's Leap, coupled with the town of Jerusalem sitting at the bottom of Candlewood Lake gives credibility to our narrative. We bring to life the struggle of good vs evil and what happens when lifelong, outdated traditions are challenged." 
 
A while back I got in touch with the folks behind the movie, invited them on the I-95 Morning Show with Ethan, Lou and Dave and talked about the film, and shooting in New Milford. We spoke with Director Myke Furhman and Writer/Executive Producer Victoria Flores-Argue. During that discussion, I demanded to be in the movie, telling the duo that I have some experience acting on TV shows that never actually made it onto TV. Against all odds, they did invite me to participate and I visited the set on October 20th to shoot a scene that is important. I was extremely nervous and I had zero idea of what I was in for. Below are some insider moments from my day on-set and from others.  

Gallery Credit: Lou Milano

Data Uncovers CT's 7 Most Popular TV Shows - Not My Vibe

Connecticut residents are'nt just watching a ton of Netflix shows, they are searching for them in big numbers. CSGO Luck conducted a study using Google data to find Connecticut's Most searched TV shows of 2023. I like some of these shows but if I were making a Top 7 list, this would not be my "vibe" to borrow a word from my wife.

Gallery Credit: Lou Milano

Inside the Premier Party for the Danbury Trashers Netflix Documentary

My name is Lou Milano, I am the co-host of the Ethan and Lou Morning Show on I-95. Recently, I attended the local premier of the Netflix film "Untold: Crime & Penalties" about the Danbury Trashers. The Trashers were a United Hockey League team that were around for a short time in the 2000' s in Western, CT but the team and ownership left a lasting impact.

The premier was open to the public and would take place inside the building where the Trashers played hockey, the Danbury Ice Arena. I decided to watch the movie at my house before going to the event. I wanted to use the time at the arena to interview the people in the film, and give an inside look into the night. This was my night out, with the cast of the film and the Trashers. 

Gallery Credit: Lou Milano

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