Bette Midler

Film News: ‘Green Book,’ Olivia Colman Shock at 91st Oscars

CHICAGO – After all the controversies that beset the 91st Academy Awards, the actual event continued to surprise, with the stunning upset of Olivia Colman (“The Favourite”) as the Best Actress honoree – besting heavily favored Glenn Close – to the naming of “Green Book” as Best Picture, which overcame a backlash regarding the liberties of its based-on-truth story.

Interview: Husbands of the Stage Musical ‘The First Wives Club’

CHICAGO – Like the recent movie-to-stage-musical adaptations, “The Producers” and “Young Frankenstein,” Chicago has become the proving ground before a Broadway premiere. The latest is almost a no-brainer, “The First Wives Club,” adapted from the 1996 film that starred Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton.

Blu-ray Review: Learn a Lesson by Not Seeing ‘Parental Guidance’

Parental Guidance

CHICAGO – “Parental Guidance” is embarassingly bad. Why on Earth Billy Crystal chose this anemic, cliched comedy to essentially come back from retirement is something I’ll never understand. Maybe the star of “City Slickers” and Oscar legend thought this would be his “Meet the Parents”. It’s not.

Film Review: No Scrooge in Billy Crystal with ‘Parental Guidance’

CHICAGO – As the bells toll this Christmas morn, the critical knots are untied and the new comedy, “Parental Guidance,” is deemed to be not bad – even though the marketing might have indicated otherwise. Billy Crystal and Bette Midler make merry and bright as two grandparents taking care of modern kids.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 40 Pairs of Passes to ‘Parental Guidance’ with Billy Crystal, Bette Midler

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 40 pairs of movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of “Parental Guidance” starring Billy Crystal and Bette Midler!

Theater Review: Evocative ‘For the Boys’ Must Blend Disconnected Song With Rich Story

CHICAGO – Musical theater takes on the burden or blessing of twice the challenge as songless theater. To earn widespread acclaim and timeless durability, a show will seamlessly balance song and story in perfect harmony. The two living, breathing creatures must symbiotically advance each other. If one’s stronger, one suffocates the other and both die.

Blu-Ray Review: Pets Deserve Better Than ‘Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore’

Cats & Dogs 2

CHICAGO – At its rare best, “Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore” recalls Looney Tunes productions with their brilliant blend of slapstick humor, wordplay, and breakneck pace. And the odd collection of TV-caliber guest stars including Fred Armisen (“Saturday Night Live”), Jack McBrayer (“30 Rock”), and Chris O’Donnell (“NCIS: Los Angeles”) along with a truly weird group of vocal performances that include Bette Midler and Nick Nolte of all people make for a film that sometimes resembles “Looney Tunes: Back in Action.” Sadly, resembling a funny movie does not make a comedy and this half-assed attempt at family entertainment should be sent to the pound.

DVD Review: Disney Quietly Releases Underrated ‘Oliver and Company’

Oliver and Company
HollywoodChicago.com DVD Rating: 3.5/5.0
DVD Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Maybe it’s because I was still young when it came out, but it seems like “Oliver and Company” has been unjustly forgotten by the Disney machine and family audiences in general. The 20th anniversary edition, newly released on DVD, might bring this lost comedy to a new audience.

Blu-Ray Review: Remake of ‘The Women’ Fails on Every Level

The Women

CHICAGO – The long-delayed remake of “The Women”, the 1939 classic film that has been in the pipeline for years, should have stayed in terminal development hell.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Grace, Or the Art of Climbing

    CHICAGO – What is life but a constant climb? The Brown Paper Box Co., one of the most vital storefront theater groups in Chicago, asks that question and more in the significant “Grace, Or the Art of Climbing.” Using a woman’s journey through some difficult situations, the parallels of “the climb” become a artfully performed story that is all inspiration and uplift. The play runs through July 7th, 2019, at Stage 773 in the Belmont Avenue Theater District in Chicago. For more information and tickets, click here.

  • Elizabeth Laidlaw

    CHICAGO – The recent limited series “The Red Line” on CBS-TV was notable for a couple elements – it was set in Chicago and it featured Chicago actors in major roles. Creators Caitlin Parrish and Erica Weiss (from here), cast their Chi-town colleague Elizabeth Laidlaw, who portrayed police officer “Vic” Renna.

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