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 – Drew Barrymore’s directorial debut “Whip It” is the kind of fun, girl-power driven comedy that I honestly expected would find a huge word-of-mouth audience in theaters. Its absolutely dismal box office ($13 million) was one of the biggest financial surprises of 2009. People are likely to catch up with the Ellen Page comedy on Blu-ray and DVD.