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Aldis Hodge

Film Review: Opportunity For Insight Wasted in ‘The East’

The East
HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Brit Marling is an undeniably smart, forward-thinking writer/actress in that she refuses to succumb to gender stereotypes and tries to chart her own way through the independent film movement. If this is true, and I still believe it is, why did “The East,” in which she stars and which she co-wrote, end up so frustratingly melodramatic? Why was the opportunity for true commentary or even character development within this fascinating world discarded in favor of an awkwardly-staged and poorly-written love story laden with genre tropes? I so wanted to like “The East,” but it never pointed me in the direction where I could do so.

TV Review: Fourth Season Premiere of TNT’s ‘Leverage’

CHICAGO – The game is on and the gang is back in TNT Network’s “Leverage,” premiering its fourth season on June 26th. Oscar winner Timothy Hutton is again ready to lead his team of con artists, grifters and hackers to stick it to the man.

TV Review: TNT’s ‘Leverage’ Returns For Promising Summer Season

Leverage S3

CHICAGO – The team behind “Leverage,” including producer/director Dean Devlin and star Timothy Hutton are back with a headline-grabbing summer diversion. With articles calling for the head of BP and reports on the continued economic crisis, this “Robin Hood” for the modern age or “Ocean’s 11” if Danny Ocean were a bit more philanthropic is as timely as the day it premiered. And it’s more consistently entertaining.

DVD, TV Review: TNT’s ‘Leverage’ Delivers Entertainment Despite Flaws

Leverage

CHICAGO – In a world where corporate bailouts and scumbags like Bernie Madoff dominate the news, it would seem like TNT’s “Leverage” would be a natural choice for a summer diversion.

Interview: Oscar Winner Timothy Hutton, Gina Bellman on TNT’s New ‘Leverage’ Series

CHICAGO – After hearing comical interpretations of leverage from HollywoodChicago.com readers – including “taking someone’s pet hostage,” “having goons, paying them well and feeding them well” and a “push-up bra” – Academy Award-winning actor Timothy Hutton jumped into his “Leverage” character and said it’s just one matter-of-fact word: “power”.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Drunk History Seasons 1 & 2, 2014

    CHICAGO – The awesomeness of history loses any of its stuffiness with the incredibly fun, indeed educational show “Drunk History” from Comedy Central, its two seasons now released on DVD. Hosted by its creator Derek Waters, the show is a celebration of various historic figures and their under-appreciated true tales, as expressed by funny people narrating in the universal language of inebriation; their recounts are then reenacted by famous actors working with their given dialogue, dressed with the comic cheapness of a bloated biopic.

  • Happy Christmas

    CHICAGO – “Drinking Buddies” director Joe Swanberg’s latest release of the same star wattage is “Happy Christmas,” an even lower-fi story than the Olivia Wilde beer comedy, steered even more by the casting that it was able to assemble. However, with this movie Swanberg doesn’t so much worry about having a story that could be confused with a more mainstream romantic comedy if it were to have a bigger budget.

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