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Janet McTeer

Film Review: ‘Hannah Arendt’ Demonstrates Banality of the Biopic

Hannah Arendt Film Review

CHICAGO – “Hannah Arendt” comes to American cinemas packaged in the sort of prestige that elicits admiration rather than anticipation. Though Margarethe von Trotta is widely regarded as the leading female filmmaker in Germany, it’s doubtful that any audiences outside of her native country are all that familiar with her work. Her new film, “Hannah Arendt,” is so undistinguished that it’s hard to believe that it was made by a director often mentioned in the same breath as Fassbinder and Herzog.

TV Review: Star-Studded ‘Parade’s End’ is True Accomplishment

CHICAGOHBO brings BBC2’s “Parade’s End,” based on the highly-acclaimed novels by Ford Madox Ford, stateside and the star-studded mini-series with a breathtakingly good script from the legendary Sir Tom Stoppard is a must-see for anyone interested in historical drama, quality acting, or the kind of stunning production values usually reserved for big-screen adaptations with Oscar aspirations.

TV Review: Fifth, Final Season of ‘Damages’ Starts with a Bang

CHICAGO – “Damages” is back for its fifth and final season and there’s every reason to believe the award-winning show is going to end on a high note given the strength of the first two episodes of this impressive final arc. We’re finally going to get what we’ve been dying to see since the amazing first season — Patty vs. Ellen in a court of law.

Blu-ray Review: Sleepy Thriller ‘The Woman in Black’ Miscasts Daniel Radcliffe

The Woman in Black Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Nothing jars an audience quite like the sudden appearance of a fearsome apparition in a dimly lit room. Even hokey thrillers like William Castle’s “House on Haunted Hill” still manage to make viewers jump from their seats by using this reliable horror standby. “The Woman in Black” has one such moment, but it is surrounded by a murky sea of grim tedium.

Film Review: Daniel Radcliffe Stars in Chilling ‘The Woman in Black’

CHICAGO – The most important element to the opening of “The Woman in Black” is the Hammer Films logo that caused the legendary Roger Ebert to applaud when it appeared in the screening room here in Chicago. This is a Hammer Film through and through complete with unbelievable character action, loud sound effects, extreme shock scares, and other B-movie manipulations.

Film Review: Glenn Close, Janet McTeer in Melancholy ‘Albert Nobbs’

Albert Nobbs
HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – People who put themselves in boxes often go through their entire lives without meeting anyone who show them what it’s like on the outside. There’s every possibility that the tragically confined title character in “Albert Nobbs” would have remained in her box till her death if not for a chance encounter with someone who shows her that there is another way. The sad drama that follows charts her attempt to break free and realization that it may have come too late.

Film Feature: The Best Supporting Performances of 2011

CHICAGO – Kicking off our annual series of year-end film features, we begin with the ensemble players, the supporting cast members who provided the necessary dramatic support to allow their leading men and women to shine.

TV Review: HBO’s ‘Into the Storm’ With Brendan Gleeson, Janet McTeer

Into the Storm

CHICAGOHBO’s “Into the Storm” is a different kind of WWII movie than audiences have recently become accustomed to seeing. This excellent drama is not about the people on the ground but about the powerful men that made the decisions that determined their fates.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Drunk History Seasons 1 & 2, 2014

    CHICAGO – The awesomeness of history loses any of its stuffiness with the incredibly fun, indeed educational show “Drunk History” from Comedy Central, its two seasons now released on DVD. Hosted by its creator Derek Waters, the show is a celebration of various historic figures and their under-appreciated true tales, as expressed by funny people narrating in the universal language of inebriation; their recounts are then reenacted by famous actors working with their given dialogue, dressed with the comic cheapness of a bloated biopic.

  • Happy Christmas

    CHICAGO – “Drinking Buddies” director Joe Swanberg’s latest release of the same star wattage is “Happy Christmas,” an even lower-fi story than the Olivia Wilde beer comedy, steered even more by the casting that it was able to assemble. However, with this movie Swanberg doesn’t so much worry about having a story that could be confused with a more mainstream romantic comedy if it were to have a bigger budget.

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