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.
Harry Connick Jr.
CHICAGO – As a refreshing departure from the snarky, shrill and soulless time wasters passing for children’s entertainment these days, this wholesome, fact-based drama works perfectly well. It captures some of the innocence and warmth that characterized ’60s-era Disney fare, as well as the blandness and exceedingly high cheese factor.
CHICAGO – Charles Martin Smith has had a varied career as an actor and a director. He was one of the famous ensemble cast members of “American Graffiti,” directed by George Lucas, and broke out himself as a director in the mid-1980s. His latest work as a filmmaker was one of last week’s big box office hits, “Dolphin Tale.”
CHICAGO – In the tradition of live-action Disney films of another era, “Dolphin Tale” wears its heart on its sleeve, while at the same time using the characters as two-dimensional window dressing around a based-on-truth story of humans and an animal bonding together to inspire a nation.