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James Mason

Blu-Ray Review: Spectacular ‘Bigger Than Life’ Joins Criterion Collection

Bigger Than Life

CHICAGO – “God was wrong!” This line, spoken by the legendary James Mason in the remarkable “Bigger Than Life,” must have sent shockwaves through the audiences that heard it in 1956 and it’s not surprising that the film was shunned, buried, and only recently unearthed as a classic of its era. Directed by Nicholas Ray (“Rebel Without a Cause”), the film is the latest addition to the Criterion Collection and it’s stunningly good.

Free TCM Screening of ‘North by Northwest’ at Music Box Theatre in Chicago

North by Northwest

CHICAGO – Turner Classic Movies will present a free screening of “North by Northwest” at the Music Box Theatre on Tuesday, March 30th, 2010 at 7:30pm with TCM’s Robert Osborne and Oscar-winning star Eva Marie Saint.

Blu-Ray Review: Alfred Hitchcock Makes Striking HD Debut With ‘North by Northwest’

North by Northwest

CHICAGO – It is as difficult for me to write critically about “North by Northwest” as it would be for someone to discuss their first love. The films of Hitchcock are, without question, why I do what I do and my only concern, as they start to be released on Blu-Ray, is that they won’t live up to the bar set by the package put together for first Hitch movie on the next-gen format - “North by Northwest”.

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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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