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Film Review: Annette Bening Proves ‘Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’

Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool

CHICAGOGEORGE BAILEY: “Hey, you look good. That’s some dress you got on there.” VIOLET: “This old thing? I only wear it when I don’t care how I look.” That is how actress Gloria Grahame (as Violet Bick) was introduced in the classic “It’s a Wonderful Life”. Now she is portrayed by Annette Bening in “Film Stars Don’t Die In Liverpool”.

Film Review: ‘The Commuter’ is a Fun, Butt-Kicking Good Time

CHICAGO – Sometimes you’re just in the mood for a good old Liam Neeson ass-kicker… and “The Commuter” fits that bill. It asks, damn near requires, you to leave your brain safely at the station, but it moves too fast that you don’t have much time to think about it. It’s ludicrous, dumb and fun entertainment for January.

Digital Review: Comeback Kid Rita Moreno in ‘Remember Me’

Remember Me, Rita Moreno

CHICAGO – Academy Award winner (in 1962!) Rita Moreno is in the midst of a big media comeback. The 86 year-old actress, who famously portrayed Anita in that Oscar-winning role in “West Side Story,” is in her second season of the “One Day at a Time” reboot on Netflix, and is featured in the indie film “Remember Me,” available now for download and Video On Demand.

Feature: HollywoodChicago.com’s Overrated & Worst Films of 2017

CHICAGO – Opinions are like certain orifices, everybody has one. The contributors to HollywoodChicago.com – Patrick McDonald, Jon Lennon Espino and Spike Walters – are no strangers to opinions on the film scene, so why not offer judgement on the most overrated and worst films of the year 2017.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 40 Pairs of Passes to ‘Phantom Thread’ With Daniel Day-Lewis

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film, we have 40 pairs of advance-screening movie passes up for grabs to the highly anticipated new Paul Thomas Anderson film “Phantom Thread” starring Daniel Day-Lewis!

Entertainment News: Awards Season Begins with 2018 Golden Globes

CHICAGO – It was basic black at the 75th Golden Globe Awards on January 7th, 2018, as attendees chose a fashion statement to define the year that Hollywood faced the realities of sexual harassment. Hosted by Seth Meyers of NBC-TV’s “Late Night,” the Globes celebrated the best of TV and film in 2017.

Film Feature: The 10 Best Films of 2017, By Patrick McDonald

CHICAGO – It’s time to choose the TEN SCARIEST Donald Trump Tweets, excuse me, The 10 Best films of 2017 (got a lot on my mind). Selected by HollywoodChicago.com’s Patrick McDonald, the “Über Critic,” it is a list that celebrates redemptive spirit, love of the love and just all-out fun at the flickers.

Interview, Audio: Illeana Douglas on Directors & Female Spirit

Illeana Douglas of TCM

CHICAGO – The acting career of Illeana Douglas began with director Martin Scorsese and flourished in her first lead role for “Grace of My Heart” (1996). She is best known today for hosting the “Trailblazing Women” series on Turner Classic Movies, and in Part Three of a three part interview with HollywoodChicago.com, she talks about feminism, the essence of directors she has worked for, plus her grandmother Helen Gahagan, the third female Congress representative in U.S. history.

Film Review: ‘Hostiles’ with Christian Bale is a Big Bad Bore

CHICAGO – “Hostiles” is an exercise in prestige western boredom. It’s competently made, but its as lifeless as a scalped corpse on the prairie. It’s long on pretty western locales and impressive facial hair, but short on story, characters, or much of anything else to help keep your eyelids from closing.

Interview, Audio: Illeana Douglas on Acting & the Film ‘Grace of My Heart’

Illeana Douglas photo 2 by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – The acting career of Illeana Douglas began with director Martin Scorsese and flourished in her first lead role for “Grace of My Heart” (1996). She is best known today for hosting the “Trailblazing Women” series on Turner Classic Movies, and in Part Two of a three part interview with HollywoodChicago.com, she talks about her approach as an actor and how early influences defined that style.

Film Review: ‘The Post’ Illuminates the Skills of Meryl Streep

CHICAGO – For all the films Meryl Streep is privileged to make – which is remarkable considering the industry’s attitude toward older actresses – she has even admitted that the audience may be tired of seeing her. But as publisher Katherine Graham in ‘The Post’, she nails yet another great performance.

Film News: Newly Renovated Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago Reopens on Jan 5, 2018

2018 Gene Siskel Film Center

CHICAGO – The lights of State Street will be a bit brighter on Friday, Jan. 5, 2018 as the Gene Siskel Film Center reopens after five weeks of renovations. New seating, carpeting and wiring was put into place, capping the first major upgrade since the legendary theater opened 17 years ago.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Speech & Debate (stage play)

    CHICAGO – “Speech & Debate,” the latest production from the mighty Brown Paper Box Company, continues their tradition of thinking outside that “box” in presenting storefront theater that makes a statement and a difference. “Speech” goes inside America by showcasing the outsiders… those who create art because they can’t get it right in real life. This non-equity Chicago stage play premiere is finely tuned and wonderfully acted, and runs through March 4th, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • We're Gonna Be Okay

    CHICAGO – The 1960s were a time of historical social transition. The movements – civil rights, feminist, gay rights – all had roots in that tumultuous decade. The Chicago premiere of Basil Kreimendahl’s “We’re Gonna Be Okay” echoes all of those movements in its characters, and collides them against the October 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the American Theater Company through March 4th, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

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