CHICAGO – The issue of gender identity, especially for those who are born with a vagueness as to what to call themselves between/beyond boy and girl, has come front and center in the U.S., both with the legalization of gay marriage and the callous repudiation of identity by trying to pass laws dismissing it (the North Carolina “bathroom” laws). The performance companies of The Living Canvas and Nothing Without a Company is currently staging “[Trans]formation,” which presents gender identity art by six performers, who perform most of the play in the nude.
CHICAGO – Matt Walsh has been more visible lately, and it has much to do with his approach to character roles, beginning as Mike McLintock on the HBO series “Veep” and currently in the new film “Into the Storm.” For a Chicago native who began doing comedy improvisation here, he is moving on up.
CHICAGO – “No soup for you!” is one of the most memorable TV catchphrases of the 1990s, uttered into immortality by actor Larry Thomas on “Seinfeld,” who portrayed “The Soup Nazi.” Thomas was in the Chicago area recently to act in “Mind Over Mindy,” a new comedy from writer/director Robert Alaniz.
CHICAGO – The plot description which this review will eventually get to is going to make Nicole Holofcener’s “Enough Said” sound sitcomish. It’s a conceit straight out of Must-See TV.
CHICAGO – It premiered on Sunday night and so we’re a few days behind but we’re also a few weeks ahead as HBO sent four episodes for review. Better late than never, right? If you saw the season two premiere of “Veep,” you know it was damn smart and incredibly funny. The good news? The cast and writers don’t lose any of that stellar rhythm from the premiere, as this show seems even more confident and accomplished than its award-winning first season (which was recently released on Blu-ray and DVD, details below).
CHICAGO – With the same profane-yet-brilliant rhythm he brought to the Oscar-nominated “In the Loop,” Armando Iannucci now tackles weekly television in the very funny “Veep, a new comedy that doesn’t quite feel like it’s going to change the landscape of TV sitcoms or earn the rapturous praise of its night-mate (“Veep”) but is nonetheless one of the straight-up funniest shows on TV.
CHICAGO – Apparently, HBO likes to give its news in bulk. The premium network announced debut dates for a new HBO feature film, the new season of a hit series, and the premiere of two new series to the network.
CHICAGO – The last year in television will be remembered as a very funny one as hit new comedies like “Glee,” “Modern Family,” and “Community” joined seasoned veterans like “30 Rock,” “The Office,” and “How I Met Your Mother” on lists of the best laugh-fests on the tube. Arguably the best of them all was also the oldest — the amazing seventh season of HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” now available on DVD and simply spectacular.
CHICAGO – You would have to live under a pop culture rock to not know about the big hook that will happen on this season of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” - the reunion of the cast of “Seinfeld”. Yes, Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jason Alexander, and Michael Richards all return, but the season starts with a pair of episodes that affirm that “Curb” needs no stunt guest appearances to succeed.
CHICAGO – If you have yet to jump on the Blu-Ray bandwagon or are new to the HD revolution and have yet to see a Pixar film in 1080P, the new edition of “A Bug’s Life” would be a great place to start. With releases like the great one for “WALL-E” and now this gorgeous transfer for “A Bug’s Life,” Disney/Pixar produces HD video clarity that really must be seen to be believed.