CHICAGO – If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between a director and a producer, let “47 Ronin” explain how the hierarchy of creativity hinders the evolution of even the most straightforward-sounding pitches. “47 Ronin” is the type of samurai movie set in Japan that features native actors speaking only English, while Keanu Reeves stars as an outsider clearly plunked into the picture for stateside star power.
CHICAGO – FX’s “The Bridge” bears undeniable resemblance to other recent cable hits. The quirky-but-smart female lead will remind viewers of Claire Danes’ award-winning performance on Showtime’s “Homeland” while the mystery structure of the piece and the dense atmosphere are undeniably reminiscent of AMC’s “The Killing.” And international audiences will know it’s a loose remake of a Swedish show called “Bron.”
CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 30 pairs of movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of the highly anticipated “The Host” from the author of “The Twilight Saga”!
CHICAGO – Benoît Jacquot is a director clearly enraptured by the beauty of young women. This was eminently clear in his early ’90s-era vehicles for Virginie Ledoyen (“A Single Girl,” “Marianne”), an actress who turned up in his latest picture, “Farewell, My Queen,” still looking startlingly youthful. Yet she is no longer the center of Jacquot’s universe.
CHICAGO – Is there any actress in the world today with more seductive and transfixing eyes than Léa Seydoux? She often tilts her head in a direction that allows her to peer up from beneath lowered brows. Stanley Kubrick would loved to photograph her. Yet her radiant orbs are capable of conveying more than mere menace. She can appear frighteningly vulnerable and coldly calculating within the same take.
CHICAGO – For audiences seeking a casually entertaining thriller that doesn’t require a great deal of thought, “Unknown” amounts to an enjoyable couple of hours. Skeptics are advised to steer clear. Though the mind-scrambling plot includes initial shades of “Twilight Zone” intrigue, it’s really just an excuse for Liam Neeson to kick even more butt than he did in 2008’s surprise box office hit, “Taken.”
CHICAGO – “Unknown,” the latest thriller to attempt to turn Liam Neeson into an unusual choice for an action star (a la “Taken” and “The A-Team”), is one of those films that nearly works but falls just short of its audience’s expectations. The elements are there — a (mostly) strong ensemble, an interesting concept, an intriguing location, a promising director — but the film never comes together because the script needed one more rewrite that it just never received.
CHICAGO – This 28-image slideshow contains most of the official press images for the highly-anticipated “Unknown,” starring Liam Neeson, Diane Kruger, January Jones, Aidan Quinn, Bruno Ganz, and Frank Langella. The film was directed by Jaume Collet-Serra. It will be released on February 18th, 2011.
CHICAGO – If only there were more filmmakers with visions as unique as “Inglourious Basterds” and the guts to put their reputation on the line. Thriller, drama, comedy, action film, and a slice of revisionist history that plays as a modern revenge fantasy, “Inglourious Basterds” plays even better the second time through and shines with a fantastic Blu-Ray release. It’s a total blast.
CHICAGO – What truly distinguishes Quentin Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds” from the cookie-cutter marketplace also makes its impact incredibly difficult to put into words.
CHICAGO – Venerated writer and Hollywood director Quentin Tarantino has no shame in admitting he’s a basterd. In fact, he’s deeply proud of it.