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Film Review: Direction Proves a Problem For Open Mic Drama ‘Rudderless’

Rudderless, Billy Crudup Anton Yelchin

CHICAGO – Actor William H. Macy’s directorial debut “Rudderless” is a film of open mic songwriting that tackles a recovery from grief with neat lyrics and easy metaphors. Instead of standing out, Macy has provided another sap’s ballad that has the cuteness of “Kumbaya”, one that aims to please the crowd without challenging emotions, only presenting them.

TV Review: Second Season of ‘Hannibal’ Crosses the Next Plateau

HannibalS2A.jpg

CHICAGO – After becoming one of last season’s don’t miss shows “Hannibal” has it’s work cut out for it on several fronts. Forget the fact that the bar is set so high for the writing and the acting and visual aesthetics. Underneath all that is another far more daunting task. Show Runner Bryan Fuller has already let leak that Season Four is when the events depicted in the novels and previous film adaptations will start to enter the mix – culminating in a season that imagines events taking place after the film “Hannibal” (2001).

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 25 Pairs of Passes to ‘Ride Along’ with Kevin Hart, Ice Cube

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 25 pairs of advance-screening passes up for grabs to the new comedy “Ride Along” starring Kevin Hart, Ice Cube and John Leguizamo!

Blu-ray Review: ‘Hannibal’ is Best Drama on Network TV

Hannibal

CHICAGO – Has there ever been a network TV show more cinematic than “Hannibal”? Especially when one watches it commercial-free in “binge” format on the newly-released Blu-ray, one can even more distinctly appreciate the fact that the first season of Bryan Fuller’s incredible show, the best on network TV, plays like long film. Scratch that.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 25 Pairs of Passes to ‘Man of Steel’ With Henry Cavill From ‘300’ Director

CHICAGOHighly anticipated! In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 25 pairs of advance-screening movie passes up for grabs to one of 2013’s most highly anticipated films: “Man of Steel” with Henry Cavill!

TV Review: NBC’s ‘Hannibal’ is Smart, Creepy, Adult Thriller

CHICAGONBC’s “Hannibal” is the best new network drama of the 2012-13 season. It’s a smart, creepy, atmospheric piece of work that perfectly gets the Thomas Harris universe that gave us one of the most memorable villains of all time.

Blu-ray Review: HBO Telefilm Releases Mark Black History Month

Thurgood

CHICAGO – With the success of “Red Tails,” currently in theaters, movie goers may want another, less Lucasversed take on the same story and could get it with one part of the three-movie wave of releases from HBO Home Video meant to celebrate Black History Month — “The Tuskegee Airmen,” which just hit the format with “Thurgood” and “The Josephine Baker Story.”

Blu-ray Review: Steven Soderbergh Delivers Again With Riveting ‘Contagion’

Contagion

CHICAGO – January 2012 is Steven Soderbergh month. The man’s newest film, “Haywire,” opens in theaters on January 20th (and we’ll have a review up shortly before it opens) while Criterion is upgrading his Oscar-winning “Traffic” to Blu-ray and re-releasing their DVD edition on the 17th of the month (you can, of course, also expect a review of that to run soon). The first wave of the Soderbergh trifecta is the Blu-ray and DVD release of “Contagion,” another expertly-made piece of filmmaking from a man who seems to know how to do nothing less.

Film Review: Steven Soderbergh’s Riveting ‘Contagion’ With Matt Damon

CHICAGO – A few weeks ago saw the release of the R-rated “Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark,” a gore-free creature feature that was given the MPAA stamp of 17-plus due to “pervasive scariness.” This week sees the PG-13-rated “Contagion,” a film SO much more pervasively scary than the movie about goblins in a distant mansion because, well, it’s about the fact that the world is pervasively scary.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles with Megan Fox

    CHICAGO - Look past the cheesy carbs and b-boy poses, this shiny mo-cap reboot of cartoon juggernaut “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” offers slick entertainment that makes for a welcome surprise for middle school fare. Proving that executive producer Michael Bay has both grown up but it still frightfully in tune with what jazzes teens, this surprise box office hit is indeed a nice slice of a blockbuster spectacle, whether or not a viewer cares about the turtles or not.

  • HoliDaze Front

    CHICAGO – Need a break from the noise of the holidays? Step Up Productions, – in residence at Chicago Dramatists Theater – present “HoliDaze,” a collection of six one-act plays, all dealing with the nature and nurture of the season. The showcase runs through December 21st, 2014.

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