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Film News: ‘Spotlight’ Wins Best Picture at 2016 Academy Awards

CHICAGO – “Spotlight” held off all challengers at the 88th Academy Awards, as the film won Best Picture, after Alejandro González Iñárrittu had won Best Director for the second year in a row for “The Revenant.” Chris Rock held steady as the host, acknowledging Oscar’s diversity problems with a series of comedy bits.

Film News: ‘The Revenant’ Gets 12 Oscar Nominations for 2016

The Revenant - 12 Oscar nominations

CHICAGO – “The Revenant,” director Alejandro Iñárritu’s epic drama, got 12 nominations – including Best Picture – as all the categories for the 88th Academy Awards were announced on January 14th, 2016. Rounding out the Best Picture class is “The Big Short,” “Bridge of Spies,” “Brooklyn,” “Mad Max: Fury Road,” “The Martian,” “Room” and “Spotlight.”

Blu-ray Review: Chris Rock’s ‘Top Five’ is Pretty Interesting

Top Five

CHICAGO – Chris Rock isn’t a huge writer/director, but when he does make a film, it’s an event to consider. For example, he made black president tale “Head of State” long before then-senator Barack Obama was even considered for the real-life role, and whether behind the stand-up mic or in an interview, he’s a voice to be reckoned with.

Film Review: Schizophrenic ‘Top Five’ is Evolution for Chris Rock

CHICAGO – Chris Rock wants you to take him seriously, so he has made a comedy with inconsistent laughs, and a nod towards the weird fishbowl lives that today’s celebrities endure. It’s a rare film where the last part is stronger than the first few acts, a mishmash that is “Top Five.”

Blu-ray Review: Modest Release For Surprisingly Fun ‘Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted’

Madagascar 3

CHICAGO – An injection of A-list voice talent (including Bryan Cranston, Martin Short, Frances McDormand, and Jessica Chastain) along with a new setting proves to be just what the “Madagascar” franchise needed. “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted” is the best of the three films, a fun, clever ride that works for both kids and adults. While the past two films had tons of bonus material with their Blu-ray releases, this one’s a little lackluster. But the movie itself should make thousands of wee ones happy this holiday season.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 5 Blu-ray, DVD Combo Packs to ‘Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted’ Plus Circus Wigs

Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted combo pack

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Combo Pack with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 5 free Blu-ray and DVD combo packs – plus Marty’s rainbow wigs! up for grabs to the home release of “Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted”!

Film Review: Julie Delpy, Chris Rock in Sweet ‘2 Days in New York’

2 Days in New York
HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Julie Delpy’s “2 Days in New York” is an amenable screwball comedy with some jokes that definitely fall flat and some awkward emotional beats in the final act but a likable tone that allows for easy passage over the screenwriting rough spots. Ms. Delpy is still charming and co-star Chris Rock is more effective here than he typically is in film. It’s just a likable little movie without pretension to be anything more.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 30 Pairs of Passes to ‘2 Days in New York’ With Chris Rock, Julie Delpy

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 30 admit-two movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of “2 Days in New York” with Chris Rock and Julie Deply!

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Downward Dog

    CHICAGO – From “Mr. Ed” to “Dog with a Blog,” talking animals have had their place on TV. The latest has origins as a web series, with the clever title “Downward Dog.” The show premieres on Wednesday, May 17th, 2017 (9:30pEST/8:30pCST), on ABC TV, and features Ned the Dog as Martin, and human companions portrayed by Allison Tolman and Lucas Neff.

  • Positively Present: An Uplifting Cabaret

    CHICAGO – When faced with adversity, the best way around it is to somehow break into song. That is the feeling behind the Brown Paper Box Co.’s “Positively Present: An Uplifting Cabaret,” running April 7th and 8th at Mary’s Attic in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood. The event features company member Kristi Szczepanek as host, and presents song stylings by other company members, including Anna Schutz, plus some special guests. For details and ticket information, click here.

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