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Karen Gillan

Film Review: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ a Gleeful Space Romp

Guardians of the Galaxy

CHICAGO – “Guardians Of The Galaxy” is a gleeful Star Wars knockoff dressed up in Marvel Comics clothing. It occupies the same universe as Marvel’s other properties, but its tone is decidedly sillier. It has a spirit more akin to the later joke heavy installments of the Star Trek franchise or low budget exploitation mogul Roger Corman’s “Battle Beyond The Stars” than the ponderous pontificating of “Thor.”

Film Review: ‘Oculus’ Succeeds Psychologically, Fails Supernaturally

CHICAGO – Films in general are knocked for being knockoffs of something else. Horror films in particular have it especially hard in the “new” department because we’re so quickly annoyed when we’ve “seen it all before”.

Film Review: Richly Complex ‘Oculus’ is Also Scary as Hell

Oculus front

CHICAGO – The affect of horror works in five basic ways. There’s the sense of Dislocation where the lead character suddenly loses bearing, becomes unsure of what where or even who they are. Next is Dread, which is the sense that something awful is coming.

TV Review: Beloved ‘Doctor Who’ Returns with Stellar Series Premiere

CHICAGO – The good doctor is back in the TV office as “Doctor Who” returns tonight, September 1, 2012 for a five-episode run in which two characters will say goodbye and we will transition into the next phase of one of the most influential sci-fi shows of all time.

Blu-ray Review: Excellent Set For ‘Doctor Who: The Complete Sixth Series’

Doctor Who 2011

CHICAGO – The sixth season of “Doctor Who” made the biggest waves stateside, in no small part due to a marketing blitz tied into the fact that the program was, for the first time, premiering in the U.S. at the same time it was in the U.K. (For years, the series would air in its home country and be imported later.) It also became a very divisive season. Do a Twitter search and you’ll find ecstatic love and pure hatred for this season.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Torchwood: The Complete Original UK Series,’ ‘Doctor Who: Series Six, Part 1’

Doctor Who 2011

CHICAGO – Are you loving the Starz import of the great “Torchwood” into the pretty-good “Torchwood: Miracle Day” and wondering where the heck Jack Harkness (John Barrowman) came from? Do you already know about one of the best sci-fi series of the last decade? Either way, the gorgeous HD box set for “Torchwood: The Complete Original UK Series” is spectacular and you might as well keep your BBC fix going with the strong “Doctor Who: Series Six, Part 1,” both released this week on Blu-ray.

TV Review: Riveting Season Premiere of BBC’s ‘Doctor Who’

CHICAGOBBC America has been blanketing major markets with advertising for tonight’s premiere of the new season of “Doctor Who,” debuting for the first time on the same weekend as it does in the United Kingdom.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Doctor Who: The Complete Fifth Series,’ ‘Sherlock’ Are Both Great

Doctor Who 2010 Premiere

CHICAGO – Two of the more beloved and acclaimed properties in the 2010 BBC output were released on Blu-ray this month and both should be near the top of holiday wish lists for genre fans. The simple fact is that BBC is doing fantasy, science fiction, and even thriller better than anyone right now and one need look no further than “Doctor Who: The Complete Fifth Series” and “Sherlock,” two sets brimming with greatness.

TV Review of ‘Doctor Who’: New Team, Same Great Show

CHICAGO – The eleventh doctor makes his debut tonight on the highly anticipated BBC America season premiere of the great “Doctor Who,” one of the most purely entertaining shows on television.

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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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