Chicago Indie Critics (CIC) is a creative and engaging not-for-profit organization composed of unique, dedicated, and diversified film critics. Our members are wide-ranging in experiences, backgrounds, tastes, diversities, and target audiences across both print and online platforms and publications. We have organized to share our personal assessments, commentaries, passions, and creativity in a vigilant effort to highlight the greatness and diversity found in both independent and mainstream films.

While we originate in the Chicagoland area, the efforts of Chicago Indie Critics are to share, celebrate, and promote the rich artistic medium of film to audiences, fans, and eager minds across the nation and world as an exemplary and upstanding pillar of intelligent print and broadcast journalism.


Joining the Chicago Indie Critics opens a gateway to exclusive perks including access to Chicago-area press screenings, online/DVD screeners, and special-event screenings. Members actively engage by voting on prestigious CIC Awards, participating in programming events, and hosting film/TV gatherings while gaining press accreditation opportunities at local festivals. Additionally, members enjoy the spotlight with their work featured on the CIC website and social media, along with access to enriching workshops tailored for film and TV enthusiasts.

Apply to Join

Membership in the Chicago Indie Critics is open to individuals residing in the Chicagoland area encompassing specific counties in Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana. Prospective members must demonstrate their expertise by meeting specific review criteria while ensuring 15% of their reviews focus on independent, foreign language, or documentary content. Alongside the quantitative requirements, the application process considers the quality of reviews, professionalism, outlet reach, and personal traits, with an option to bolster one’s application through a letter of reference from an existing CIC member.

The Windie Awards

Each year, the film critics and voting members of Chicago Indie Critics hold their annual Windie Awards in more than 20 categories. Two awards of special interest over the years are the Trailblazer and Impact Awards.  The Trailblazer Award honors the work of an artist who truly pushed the boundaries of the medium in terms of form and content.  The Impact Award celebrates a person whose work has had a positive impact on society.

2023 Windie Award Winners

CHRISTOPHER NOLAN’S OPPENHEIMER DOMINATES THE 2023 WINDIE AWARDS PRESENTED BY CHICAGO INDIE CRITICS WITH SEVEN WINS Finishing their eighth year as a recognized awards-voting body and haven for film critics of diverse backgrounds and talents, the Chicago Indie Critics have announced the 2023 winners of their Windie Awards. The voting film critic members completed their […]

2023 Windie Award Nominations

THE “BARBENHEIMER” PHENOMENON’S TWIN BILLING OF BARBIE AND OPPENHEIMER COMBINES FOR 25 TOTAL NOMINATIONS FOR THE 2023 WINDIE AWARDS PRESENTED BY CHICAGO INDIE CRITICS Celebrating their eighth year with a new logo and redesigned website, the Chicago Indie Critics have announced the nominees for their Windie Awards. The voting film critic members completed ballots this […]

Welcome to Our New Website

Long-running fans and first-time visitors alike, welcome to the newly designed website– bolstered by a new logo– for Chicago Indie Critics, organized by Illinois Indie Critics NFP. Since 2016, we have established ourselves as a talented, diverse, and vigilant group of film and TV critics from the Chicagoland area. We are an industry-recognized awards voting […]

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