CHICAGO – The issue of gender identity, especially for those who are born with a vagueness as to what to call themselves between/beyond boy and girl, has come front and center in the U.S., both with the legalization of gay marriage and the callous repudiation of identity by trying to pass laws dismissing it (the North Carolina “bathroom” laws). The performance companies of The Living Canvas and Nothing Without a Company is currently staging “[Trans]formation,” which presents gender identity art by six performers, who perform most of the play in the nude.
CHICAGO – Don’t you hate it when you figure out where a film is going long before it gets there? That could be a problem with “Third Person,” but writer/director Paul Haggis (“Crash”) also adds enough secrets to chew on and enough multiple pathways to explore. Enter at your own risk.
CHICAGO – Not many Oscar winning screeenwriters change the course of their professional lives because of a dream (story below), but Paul Haggis is an exceptionally brilliant writer whose credits include “Crash” (2005) and “Million Dollar Baby” (2004) – which both won Best Picture – and his new film, “Third Person.”
CHICAGO – The distinct and strangely alluring style of director Wes Anderson is on opulent display in “The Grand Budapest Hotel.” In what is an eccentric, European style fairy tale, Anderson creates a legend that is forged in his signature, along with the performances of a brilliant cast.
CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 25 admit-two movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of “High School” starring Adrien Brody!
CHICAGO – Perhaps it’s because it is so clearly inspired by a retro style of action but Nimrod Antal’s “Predators,” now available on Blu-ray and DVD, plays better at home than it did at the disappointing theatrical screening in the middle of summer 2010. It’s still a bit of a disappointment, but it’s one of those films that’s nowhere near as bad as it could have been and features a few strong set pieces, especially in HD.
CHICAGO – In the opening moments of “Splice,” the audience is experiencing the world through the eyes of a newborn baby. Yet unlike Gaspar Noé’s “Enter the Void,” which recreated human perception with eerie perfection, this point of view shot is blatantly skewed. The doctors seem to be looking at a pulsating fishbowl rather than a baby. That theory is swiftly proven to be fairly accurate.
CHICAGO – Whenever two power players in the world of cinephiles come together, it creates a critical buzz and such was the case when it was announced that The Criterion Collection had chosen Terrence Malick’s “The Thin Red Line” for induction in their world-renowned series of DVDs and Blu-rays.
CHICAGO – Good films deliver on their promise. Great films up the ante even more. In this version of the long “Predators” franchise from director Nimrod Antal (“Control,” “Armored,” “Vacancy”) and more-known producer Robert Rodriguez (“Grindhouse,” “Sin City”), we merely see more of the same: just enough to get us by but not nearly enough to make us care.
CHICAGO – Watching John McTiernan’s “Predator” again to prepare for the upcoming Adrien Brody vehicle “Predators,” I was struck with surprise that this relatively generic action B-movie has spawned such an enormous franchise that includes one sequel, two “Alien vs. Predator” movies, the new reboot, comic books, action figures, and video games. It’s an inarguably decent action flick but who would have guessed what it would lead to?
CHICAGO – This 10-image slideshow contains all of the official press images for the highly anticipated “Predators,” starring Adrien Brody, Laurence Fishburne, Topher Grace, Alice Braga, and Walton Goggins. The film was written by Alex Litvak and Michael Finch, produced by Robert Rodriguez, and directed by Nimrod Antal. It will be released on July 9th, 2010.