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Mary McDonnell

TV Review: Mary McDonnell Steps Into Big Shoes on TNT’s ‘Major Crimes’

Major Crimes

CHICAGO – The producers of “The Closer” attempt a daring move tonight by pushing forward with a barely-altered version of their award-winning program mere moments after the series finale of the Kyra Sedgwick hit. I think that for some it will be too soon. Even people who claim to be massive fans of “Major Crimes” will mutter “but I miss Brenda” under their breath.

Blu-ray Review: Underappreciated ‘Margin Call’ Deserves Larger Audience

Margin Call

CHICAGOJ.C. Chandor’s CFCA-nominated “Margin Call” is the kind of film that makes me concerned about the lack of mainstream audience for adult drama. There’s no reason at all that this excellent drama with several major actors shouldn’t have found a much-larger audience. Lionsgate needs to go back to the drawing board and figure out what’s going on with their marketing and promotions since it’s total nonsense that a critically-acclaimed work like this and their even-better “Warrior” both flopped at the box office. “Warrior” was at least given a chance. “Margin Call” never went beyond 199 screens. So you probably haven’t seen it. You should.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Donnie Darko: 10th Anniversary Edition’ Feels Like Overkill

Donnie Darko

CHICAGO – A little over two years ago, Fox released a two-disc director’s cut Blu-ray of “Donnie Darko” that had a somewhat-mediocre HD transfer but enough quality special features to make up for it. With hours of bonus material, it seemed like the definitive edition. Nothing is definitive with Fox and now we have a 10th Anniversary Edition of this cult classic with four discs in one set. If you already own it and don’t need the digital copy, then this is overkill. If not, it’s the NEW definitive edition of a beloved film. For now.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Dances With Wolves: 20th Anniversary Edition’

Dances With Wolves

CHICAGO – Can anyone else believe that it’s been 20 years since “Dances With Wolves”? In a lot of movie snob circles, the Kevin Costner epic has been relegated to a tragic tale as the thing most remembered about it is that it stole several Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director, from a movie that even Costner himself would probably now admit deserved them more — “GoodFellas.” Watching it again after so long, it’s easy to see what people liked about the film. It may not have deserved Best Picture but it’s still a worthy addition to many a movie lover’s collection.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Battlestar Galactica: Season Four’ Finally Closes HD Chapter

BSG BD

CHICAGO – The high-def releases for “Battlestar Galactica” have been somewhat baffling. The problem for Universal was that A.) They had started releasing the series on standard-def when Blu-ray took off and B.) They needed a way to milk one of their most impressive cash cows for a bit longer. Consequently, the chance to individually buy all of one of the best science fiction programs of all time didn’t come until 2011. But that day has finally arrived with the release of the impressive “Battlestar Galactica: Season Four.”

Blu-Ray Review: Third Season of ‘Battlestar: Galactica’ Now in HD

BSG: S3

CHICAGO – How many “Battlestar Galactica” fans don’t already have the excellent third season in some form? The release pattern of “BSG” on Blu-ray continues to surprise this critic as it feels like the niche market who doesn’t own the complete HD series or hasn’t already bought the standard DVD is very small, meaning that the question for most is going to be whether or not to upgrade.

Blu-Ray Review: Second Season of ‘Battlestar Galactica’ Available in HD

Battlestar Galactica: Season Two

CHICAGO – Releasing seasons of hit shows that have only been available for a few years in the first place on Blu-ray can be a tricky proposition, especially when it’s not the first. What fan of “Battlestar Galactica” doesn’t own the second season of this great show? If you’re one of the few who hasn’t completed their collection because you’ve been waiting for HD, today’s your lucky day.

Blu-Ray Review: Complete Your ‘Battlestar Galactica’ Collection With Season 4.5

BSG 4.5

CHICAGO – When the decade began, who would have guessed that one of the best shows of the ’00s would air on The Sci-Fi Channel? I’m as much of a science fiction junkie as the next guy, but the network known for straight-to-cable movies like “Mansquito” and “SS Doomtrooper” wasn’t exactly the go-to place for quality drama. Until “Battlestar Galactica”.

Blu-Ray Review: Cult of ‘Donnie Darko’ Extends to Two-Disc Director’s Cut

Donnie Darko
HollywoodChicago.com Blu-Ray Rating: 4.0/5.0
Blu-Ray Rating: 4.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Most movies come and go. Even some of the most critically and commercially acclaimed films of the last few years have essentially been forgotten already. I knew Richard Kelly’s “Donnie Darko” was a film that was not going to go away quickly the first time I saw it and the Blu-Ray “Director’s Cut” simply extends the shelf life of this riveting cult classic.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Emmy Awards, Bryan Cranston

    LOS ANGELES – It was one more lap around the victory track for the AMC-TV show ‘Breakling Bad,’ as the gritty drama about a teacher turned meth dealer took home six Primetime Emmy Awards at the 66th ceremony on August 25th. ‘Modern Family’ took home the statue for Outstanding Comedy Series for a a fifth straight year.

  • Knick, The

    CHICAGO – Cinemax’s ominous new series “The Knick” is a hospital drama that’s very much in the voice of its director, Steven Soderbergh. Set in New York City at the turn of the 20th century, the series presents the medical world as it inches closer and closer to modernity, while making contemporary parallels to the desperate hustle by surgery room clients and their doctors alike regarding treatment of the human body. What has changed in the politics of medicine? What hasn’t?

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