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 – The season premiere of HBO’s “Enlightened,” directed by the great Nicole Holofcener (“Please Give,” “Lovely & Amazing”) is a stunner. With a great script by co-star Mike White and one of the best single performances by Laura Dern to date, it perfectly captures the current state of so many people
CHICAGO – Why has television become the home for so many talented actresses? The sad fact is that Hollywood screenwriters aren’t writing many quality roles for actresses over forty and so you have incredibly gifted performers like Toni Collette, Laura Linney, and Jessica Lange turning to the writing on cable to find roles that challenge them. Will Dern find the same success in HBO’s “Enlightened”?
CHICAGO – Does the fact that “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” is receiving a lavish 20th anniversary edition Blu-Ray release make anyone else feel old? Just me? Whether you’re old enough to remember the first “Vacation” or young enough to know Chevy Chase as “that old guy on Community,” this is a lavish collector’s set for a great holiday film timed for holiday shopping.