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 – Every year, the movie stars, actor/actresses and filmmakers come knocking, and HollywoodChicago.com is there to answer. Film Critics Brian Tallerico and Patrick McDonald have combined their best-of interviews for 2013, and it’s an intriguing and eclectic mix.
CHICAGO – In one of the more intriguing ways to frame the 1960s civil rights movement, “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” places the context of that African American struggle through the filter of family dynamics, focusing on the father as a butler in the White House, through six presidents.
CHICAGO – Director Lee Daniels is on a mission of education. With now two generations removed from the height of the 1960s civil rights movement, Daniels hopes to revive and highlight that history in “Lee Daniels’ The Butler” – the sensitive and emotional story of one family’s journey through the winds of change.
CHICAGO – In person, Oscar winner Forest Whitaker is a man at peace. His talent has created a demeanor of a guru – soft spoken with transcendent thoughts. His latest film is “Lee Daniels’ The Butler,” in which he portrays the title character. As a black man caught between two eras in American history, Forest Whitaker does relate.
CHICAGO – It’s a shame that a forgettable action flick forced Lee Daniels’s Oscar-winning drama to change its title from “Push” to “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire.” It’s a terribly ungainly title, brimming with wordy self-importance. What if other films did the same thing? I shudder at the thought of, “An Education: Based on the Memoir by Lynn Barber” or “A Serious Man: Based on an Idea Concocted by Roderick Jaynes.”
CHICAGO – The celebrities do come to Chicago, sometimes to sit through the grinding interrogation of HollywoodChicago.com’s Patrick McDonald. The Lucky Seven of 2009 comprise the best of last year, interview-wise.
CHICAGO – The final scene of Lee Daniels’ “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire” ends with a dedication that the film is for “precious girls everywhere”.
CHICAGO – One of the most talked about films this year is the Tyler Perry and Oprah Winfrey backed “Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire.” Essential to the film is Gabourey Sidibe, who plays the title character of Precious.
CHICAGO – Backed by industry giants Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry, the new film “Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire,” had a red carpet premiere at the Chicago International Film Festival on October 14th.