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Captain America: The First Avenger

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Captain America: The First Avenger’ Just Misses Target

Captain America

CHICAGO – Even the name makes it sound like a prequel. There are definitely elements of Joe Johnston’s “Captain America: The First Avenger” that work and the film is certainly worth a rental and certainly better than “Green Lantern” (although nowhere near the entertainment value of “X-Men: First Class”) but I can’t shake the feeling that this blockbuster won’t stand the test of time on its own. It’s an introduction to next year’s “The Avengers,” a way to get the character into the modern Marvel vernacular, that gets less interesting as it goes along. It is very likely that both Joss Whedon’s film and the inevitable sequel to this one will be superior pieces of entertainment but this “First” chapter is a bit of a disappointment.

DVD Review: Original ‘Captain America’ Tries to Bank Off Reboot’s Success

Captain America

CHICAGO – You’re probably going “Huh? There was another Captain America movie? Before Chris Evans?” Believe it or not, yes. Before people like Bryan Singer and Sam Raimi turned the Marvel-verse (and really all of Hollywood) on its head by proving that superheroes could not only be profitable but critically viable as well, there were some honest train wrecks, including an incomplete version of “Fantastic Four” and an awful adaptation of “Captain America,” recently released on DVD to tie in with the success of “Captain America: The First Avenger.” Don’t get them confused.

Film News: ‘Rise of the Planet of the Apes’ Tops Box Office

Rise of the Planet of the Apes

CHICAGO – In one of the biggest surprises this summer has seen, “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” led this past weekend’s box office with an impressive $54.8 million, according to BoxOfficeMojo.com. The action packed primate adventure was good enough for the fifth highest August opening weekend of all time.

TV Review: Real-Life Costumed Street Fighters Highlighted in ‘Superheroes’


CHICAGO – There have been a pair of fascinating feature films recently in which the lead character chose to combat evil by dressing like a caped crusader and fighting crime. It didn’t really work out too well for the leads in “Kick-Ass” or “Super” (which just-so-happens to come out on Blu-ray and tomorrow) but you may be surprised to learn that stories like these are not purely works of fiction. There actually are men and women going for what one calls “the real-life superhero experience” and their stories are chronicled in HBO’s documentary “Superheroes,” airing tonight, August 8th, 2011.

Film Review: Despite Disastrous Skinny Steve, ‘Captain America: The First Avenger’ is Perfectly Imperfect

CHICAGO – With mammoth special effects budgets carelessly puked into blockbuster films these days without story or heart, it’s effortless to wow audiences with beguiling explosions and one or two trademark, “The Matrix”-like innovations.

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  • 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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