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Harold Ramis

Interview: Director Douglas Tirola on ‘Drunk Brilliant Stoned Dead: The Story of the National Lampoon’

Drunk Stoned Brilliant Dead: The Story of National Lampoon

CHICAGO – Before the days of 24/7 internet access to every form of entertainment that exists, there were eras of radical performance expression that changed the landscape of attitudes toward everything – think of The Beatles evolving music and also changing social culture. The roots of another evolution, especially in comedy, began with a modest humor magazine that brought together the right mix of anarchists and misfits. What they did would influence comedy for years afterward, and their story is told in “Drunk Stoned Brilliant Dead: The Story of National Lampoon,” directed by Douglas Tirola.

Film News: Director, Comic Actor Harold Ramis Dead at 69

CHICAGO – He was a Ghostbuster, and Bill Murray’s sidekick in “Stripes.” He co-wrote classic modern comedies like “Animal House” and “Caddyshack.” He directed the legendary absurdist comedy, “Groundhog Day.” He is Harold Ramis, and he died on February 24th, according to his wife Erica Mann Ramis.

Blu-ray Review: ‘National Lampoon’s Vacation: 30th Anniversary’

National Lampoon's Vacation

CHICAGO – Few comedies from the ’80s are as beloved and rewatchable as “National Lampoon’s Vacation,” a surprise hit that produced multiple sequels and legions of fans. It’s probably playing somewhere on cable right now and will be for another three decades. However, in those cable airings, you won’t get to see the feature-length documentary, “Inside Story,” about the making of the film featuring new interviews with nearly all of the major players from Chevy Chase to Harold Ramis to Jane Krakowski. If you’re a comedy fan, the Blu-ray is worth picking up just for that special feature alone.

Blu-ray Review: Bill Murray’s Deft Debut Can’t Salvage Dopey ‘Meatballs’

Meatballs Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Now that Wes Anderson’s marvelous “Moonrise Kingdom” has finally received a much-belated wide release, it’s an ideal time for audiences to revisit Bill Murray’s first cinematic excursion to summer camp. Ivan Reitman’s 1979 hit, “Meatballs,” is famous primary for giving the SNL vet his first starring role, which is appropriate considering Murray is the only reason worth watching it.

Blu-Ray Review: Still-Hilarious ‘Caddyshack’ a Perfect Father’s Day Gift


CHICAGO – The best comedies are just as funny decades after they were released as the day they come out. Watch “Blazing Saddles” for the perfect example. Or “Young Frankenstein”. Or even “Caddyshack,” a film that’s not in the league of the absolute best but is still hysterically funny three decades after its release, a fact made clear by a fantastic Blu-ray release hitting stores just in time for Father’s Day.

Interview Highlights of 2009: Quentin Tarantino, Jason Reitman, Rachel Weisz, More

CHICAGO – The staff at HollywoodChicago.com met with some living legends and some rising stars in 2009. As we prepare to bring you even more in 2010, we thought we’d look back at a few of our favorite quotes from the year. Enjoy.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Year One’ Fails to Deliver a Single Laugh

Year One

CHICAGO – Here’s a thoroughly detestable comedy from some of the most appealing people in Hollywood. It could easily be mistaken for one of the fake movies advertised before “Tropic Thunder,” which cleverly spoofed the creative bankruptcy that befalls so many mainstream studio products.

Video Game Review: ‘Ghostbusters: The Video Game’ Makes Geek Dreams a Reality

CHICAGO – If I could go back in time and tell the nine-year-old me that there would one day be a video game in which I would stand alongside Peter Venkman, Ray Stantz, and Egon Spengler, battling Slimer, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, and other supernatural baddies, that kid would have had a permanent smile whenever he thought about what the future would bring.

Harold Ramis Interview: A Lifetime of Achievements With a Chicago Look at ‘Year One’

CHICAGO – Kicking off the Chicago-based “TBS Presents A ‘Very Funny’ Festival: Just for Laughs” on June 17, 2009, Harold Ramis presented his film “Year One” at the Music Box Theatre.

Jack Black Drops Biblical ‘Year One’ Bomb in ‘Be Kind Rewind’ Interview

CHICAGO – Though actors aren’t supposed to chat it up about their other films when they’re being interviewed specifically for one, every now and then they do and the focus of the interview changes entirely. When Collider.com on Saturday published an interview with Jack Black about his Feb. 22 film “Be Kind Rewind,” details willingly slipped about his upcoming film “Year One”.

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  • Sherlock Holmes with David Arquette (teaser)

    CHICAGO – Different isn’t bad and might be great, but you’d better have an irrefutable reason to change what was never broken. Campy being the only word to accurately convey this alternate-reality version of Sherlock Holmes with an original script, writer Greg Kramer and director Andrew Shaver try too hard to be different without ever figuring out why.

  • Merry Widow, The

    CHICAGO – Standing up at the Lyric Opera house in Chicago is unusual before a show. But in this case, it was the night after a tragedy, and the operetta “The Merry Widow” – set in Paris, France, in 1905 – was about to unfold. The orchestra struck up La Marseillaise, a reminder that we’ll always have Paris.


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