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Gary Cole

Blu-ray Review: Goofy ‘Hop’ Wants Your Easter Bunny Money

Hop

CHICAGO – They don’t make too many Easter movies. There are tons of Christmas movies. Halloween has a genre. Even “Independence Day.” But Easter is under-served. Based on “Hop,” there’s a reason for that. The film isn’t as torturous as I was expecting, but it definitely misses its mark for all but the littlest ones. If you have a toddler looking for something new to watch this Easter, it might get the job done. Everyone else, wait for another holiday.

Interviews: Jamie Anne Allman, Director Joe Maggio on ‘The Last Rites of Joe May’

Jamie Allman, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – One of the nice surprises of the Chicago International Film Festival was the opening night presence of a true Chicago-based film. “The Last Rites of Joe May” stars Dennis Farina as an aging small-time hood, taken in by single mother Jenny Rapp, portrayed by Jamie Anne Allman. The production was directed with sublime power by Joe Maggio.

Interviews: Dennis Farina, Gary Cole Perform ‘The Last Rites of Joe May’

CHICAGO – Dennis Farina is Chicago. Born and raised in the Windy City, his persona and manner is everything Chicago – bold, classy and the true urban Midwest. His latest film is “The Last Rites of Joe May,” which features another actor who got his start in Chicago theater, Gary Cole.

Film Review: Dennis Farina is Absolved in ‘The Last Rites of Joe May’

The Last Rites of Joe May

CHICAGO – The Chicago born-and-bred actor Dennis Farina has had many opportunities in his career to distinguish himself in a variety of roles, but never has he carried a film as well as his turn in the recent “The Last Rites of Joe May.” Farina imbues the title character with raw emotion, feral toughness and a touch of fear.

Slideshow: Exclusive Portrait Gallery From 2011 Chicago International Film Festival

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Dennis Farina on the Red Carpet for ‘Last Rites for Joe May,’ October 6th, 2011

CHICAGO – The 47th Chicago International Film Festival wrapped on Oct. 20, 2011 with a spectacular showing of the new film “The Artist”. Over the past two weeks, HollywoodChicago.com has been covering the red carpets and publishing exclusive portraits of the stars and directors.

Film News: 2011 Chicago International Film Festival Opens With ‘The Last Rites of Joe May’

CIFF logo 2011

CHICAGO – The red carpet was put to good use on the opening night of the 2011 Chicago International Film Festival on October 6th. The 47th annual edition of the two week festival featured stars Dennis Farina, Gary Cole and Jamie Anne Allman walking the carpet before the showing of their film “The Last Rites of Joe May.”

Film News: Preview Night For 2011 Chicago International Film Festival

CIFF logo 2011

CHICAGO – The 2011 Chicago International Film Festival kicked off its 47th year with a preview party on September 19th at the Lucky Strike Lounge, within the AMC River East 21 Theaters on Illinois Street, where all the festival screenings will take place. Founder and Artistic Director Michael Kutza introduced staff members and presented notable films to be shown.

Film Review: ‘Hop’ is a Limp Skip, Jump For Russell Brand

Hop

CHICAGO – A definitive cinematic exploration of the Easter Bunny story is precisely what the world is missing. Right? Anyway, the folks behind “Hop,” featuring the voice of Russell Brand as the rascally rabbit, has produced this heretofore missing piece of the film canon.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘The Joneses’ Has Charming Cast, Clever Premise

The Joneses

CHICAGO – A well-cast comedy and a clever concept can help make screenwriting speed bumps much more tolerable. Take “The Joneses,” recently released on Blu-ray and DVD. It has an undeniably interesting set-up and a very likable cast and those facts alone make it worth a rental. It’s disappointingly tooth-less and somewhat predictable, but the film’s flaws are easy to overlook.

David Duchovny, Demi Moore Can’t Keep Up With ‘The Joneses’

The Joneses

CHICAGO – Introduced with one of the easier movie pundit headlines ever, “The Joneses” indeed cannot keep up with itself, despite a sharp script and the plausible efforts of David Duchovny and Demi Moore.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • 47 Ronin with Keanu Reeves

    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.

  • A Field in England (teaser)

    CHICAGO – I can’t recommend this more. “A Field in England” is a flashback and a flash forward all at once. It’s impossible to watch without thinking of great counter culture cinema. In fact when I saw it at Fantastic Fest 2013 it played as part of a double bill with Ken Russell’s “The Devils” (1971). They made perfect cinematic companion pieces. Russell’s film concerned a wayward priest desperate to protect his 17th century city from corruption in the Church only to fall victim to group hysteria when he is, ironically, accused of witchcraft by a jealous nun.

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