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Interview: Gareth Evans Stages Incredible ‘The Raid: Redemption’

CHICAGO – For a lot of action movie fans, “The Raid: Redemption” is going to be their favorite genre flick in years. It’s an incredibly accomplished martial arts film that feels like something inspired equally by John Carpenter and Jackie Chan. We’ll be back with a full rave review tomorrow but check out this interview with its soon-to-be-famous writer/director, Gareth Evans, as he details the incredible history of the movie, its most difficult stunts, and its inspirations.

Film Review: More or Less Same Formula in ‘Kung Fu Panda 2’

CHICAGO – Good and evil, chase and fight. Those are the two basic formulas that dominate “Kung Fu Panda 2,” the sequel to the very popular first film. That redundancy is helped by the spirituality of an animated panda and some spectacular 3D rendering.

Blu-Ray Review: Crowd-Pleasing Extras Elevate ‘The Karate Kid’

The Karate Kid Blu-Ray

CHICAGO – If I were 12 years old, I’d probably think “The Karate Kid” was one of the best Blu-Rays of the year. It’s got everything: a crowd-pleasing feature film, several superb extras, and strikingly sharp picture quality, with colors that pop. Yet since I’m twice as old, I’m cursed with the clarity to see through the splendid spectacle and linger on its utter superficiality.

Jackie Chan, Jaden Smith Are Kickin’ it in Remake of ‘The Karate Kid’

CHICAGO – Despite any resistance that must have been felt in remaking the quasi-classic 1984 film “The Karate Kid,” veteran Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith put their best kicking feet forward and spin some new cloth out of the old material. In resetting the location and putting in some surreal modern touches, this remake mostly succeeds.

Slideshow: 24-Image Gallery of ‘The Karate Kid’ Chicago Premiere Event

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Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan on the Red Carpet in Chicago

CHICAGO – May 26th marked a special Chicago Premiere of “The Karate Kid,” the remake of the 1984 classic, this time around starring Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan. Smith and Chan participated in the Street Festival Event while greeting admirers. Executive Producer Will Smith even made a quick appearance.

Slideshow: Red-Carpet Premiere of ‘The Karate Kid’ With Jackie Chan, Jaden Smith

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The Karate Kid star Jackie Chan in Chicago on May 26, 2010.

CHICAGO – HollywoodChicago.com was on location for the May 26, 2010 red-carpet premiere of “The Karate Kid” in downtown Chicago. The red carpet and street festival featured stars Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith. Father Will Smith appeared briefly as a surprise guest.

‘The Karate Kid’ Interview: Jackie Chan Aspires to Be an ‘Asian Robert De Niro’

CHICAGO – When you think of Jackie Chan, you think of comedy blended with marital arts. Not any more, thanks to Will Smith and his new film “The Karate Kid,” which stars Jaden Smith.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘The Spy Next Door’ Functions as an Ultra-Lame Babysitter

The Spy Next Door Blu-Ray

CHICAGO – “The Spy Next Door” pairs a man who can’t speak English with three kids who can’t act. They’re forced to recite dialogue credited to three writers who are incapable of writing a single line of wit or originality. Worst of all, the film is directed by a man whose last halfway decent family flick was 1992’s “Beethoven.” Rarely has a mainstream release looked so much like Amateur Hour.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘The Karate Kid I & II: Collector’s Edition’

The Karate Kid I & II

CHICAGO – Before you make plans to check out the remake of “The Karate Kid” with Jaden Smith and Jackie Chan on June 11th, flashback to where the phenomenon began with the 1984 original film starring Ralph Macchio, Pat Morita, and Elisabeth Shue and the film’s first sequel, now available on Blu-ray.

DVD Round Up, Feb. 1, 2010: ‘B-Girl,’ ‘Wushu,’ ‘Fireball’

B-Girl

CHICAGO – The DVD Round-Up is back with a collection of foreign films, indie flicks, a documentary, and a Kathy Griffin stand-up special. The key word for 2010 is diversity and there’s no DVD column more embracing of the variety of titles at your local store than the Round-Up.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • The King of Comedy

    Something always felt a bit out of place for me in Martin Scorsese’s brilliant “The King of Comedy”, just released on Blu-ray for the first time. I couldn’t put my finger on it but chalked it up to it being thematically ahead of its time in its investigation of the cult of personality that defines modern entertainment.

  • 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.

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