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 – Few directors have ever kickstarted their career more confidently than Joel and Ethan Coen. And they did it with such an array of genre and subject matter from the gritty noir of “Blood Simple” to the subversive comedy of “Raising Arizona” to the gangster epic “Miller’s Crossing” to the heavily-symbolic drama “Barton Fink” to the whimsical charmer “The Hudsucker Proxy” and head-first into one of the best movies ever made — “Fargo.” Four of their first six films have been collected in the “Coen Brothers Collection” and while Fox was, very sadly, only able to send over one of them individually, we didn’t want this stellar collection to go unmentioned.
CHICAGO – The beauty of watching creative character actors like Kevin Kline and John C. Reilly is that they seem to revel in the craft of embodying their roles. In “The Extra Man,” they both take a trippy and literate script and apply some additional magic that helps to flesh out a young man’s journey into the heart of Manhattan.