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James Ransone

Blu-ray Review: Brilliantly Acted ‘Starlet’ Portrays Beauty of Unlikely Bond

Starlet Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Besedka Johnson was 85 years old when she was discovered at a YMCA. After devoting her life to astrology, the genial woman was suddenly brought to the attention of indie filmmakers intrigued by her vintage movie star features. At 86, she delivered a tour-de-force film debut in Sean Baker’s marvelous drama, “Starlet.” And at 87, she passed away.

Film Review: Crime Thriller ‘Broken City’ Fictionalizes its Crime Without Most of its Thrill

Broken City with Mark Wahlberg

CHICAGO – Rife with corruption and injustice, the setting for “Broken City” could have been picked from a litter of U.S. metropolitans. Said star Mark Wahlberg in a recent red-carpet interview with HollywoodChicago.com, it’s not Chicago.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 40 Pairs of Passes to ‘Sinister’ From ‘Paranormal Activity’ Producer

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 40 pairs of movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of the highly anticipated “Sinister” from the producer of “Paranormal Activity”!

DVD Review: ‘Generation Kill’ Defines New Face of American War

Generation Kill

CHICAGO – David Simon and Ed Burns, two of the television geniuses behind “The Wire”, turned their eyes and ears from the gang-ridden streets of Baltimore to the bullet-strewn bodies of Iraq in the incredible seven-part HBO mini-series “Generation Kill”, now available in a box set from HBO Home Video.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Spike Heels Stage Play

    CHICAGO – If you can remember the 1990s outside of childhood, you are in the glow of middle age, so congratulations. The Brown Paper Box Co. theater ensemble takes us back to those thrilling days of yesteryear with “Spike Heels,” a relationship comedy centering on the co-mingling antics of two couples, with a slight nod toward George Bernard Shaw and the play “Pygmalion” (or its musical counterpart, “My Fair Lady”).

  • Book of Merman, The

    CHICAGO – One potential theater-goer loves the “The Book of Mormon.” The other would rather stay home and watch old Ethel Merman YouTube videos. Pride Films & Theater offers the ultimate solution by combining both in a campy musical, “The Book of Merman.” Yep, two Elder characters from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints meets foghorn singer Ethel Merman.

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