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Interview: Verne Troyer – Mini-Me in ‘Austin Powers’ – in Chicagoland

CHICAGO – The small but mighty Verne Troyer is a lucky and humble star. He grew in Michigan, and maintains his Midwestern roots in his approach to show business. Troyer makes an appearance at the Hollywood Palms (Naperville, Ill.) and the Hollywood Blvd. Cinema (Woodridge) to introduce “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me” and “Goldmember.”

Blu-ray Review: ‘54,’ ‘Reindeer Games’ Are Still Troubled Films

Reindeer Games

CHICAGO – Blu-ray allows for an interesting reassessment of perceived failures as titles that haven’t been available on the next-gen format hit HD for the first time and one can see if perhaps history has been kinder to a near-miss than critics were upon its release. When I heard that “54” and the director’s cut of “Reindeer Games” were hitting Blu-ray (one can only assume the latter is tied to the collector’s edition of Ben Affleck’s “The Town” that hit last week), I wondered if their reputations as disasters were unearned and looked forward to reappreciations. They’re both still a mess.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Shrek: The Whole Story’ Offers Entire Franchise in One Set

Shrek: The Whole Story

CHICAGO – With “Shrek Forever After” also being billed as “Shrek: The Final Chapter” and being pitched as the final film in the “Shrek” franchise, it only makes sense that DreamWorks has put together a lavish box set of this billion-dollar franchise that captures the entire saga of Shrek, Donkey, Fiona, and the rest of the lovable creatures of arguably the most influential series of films of the last decade.

Theater Review: ‘Shrek the Musical’ Still in the Swamp

The company of 'Shrek the Musical'

CHICAGO – “Fairytales should really be updated,” muses the puckish Shrek during a final plea for the affections of a reluctant princess. It is one of those startlingly honest and quietly irreverent insights that “Shrek the Musical” is all too wary to boast, but is a welcome dagger into the cavalcade of childhood morality tales that, year after year, infiltrate the bulk of shooting star wishes and Barbie dream-houses.

Lazy, Uninspired ‘Shrek Forever After’ With Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz

CHICAGO – The laziest big budget film of the year, “Shrek Forever After” is the worst kind of family entertainment in that it relies solely on the goodwill engendered by the hit movies that came before to not only get audience members in seats this weekend but to sell them toys, video games, and tickets to amusement parks.

Slideshow: 31-Image Gallery of Scenes From ‘Shrek Forever After’

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Shrek (Mike Myers) and His New Nemesis, Rumpelstiltskin (Walt Dohrn)

CHICAGO – On Friday May 21st, the big green machine know as the Shrek franchise releases its latest animated epic, “Shrek Forever After,” in 3-D. All the old favorites are back, including the voices of Mike Myers as Shrek, Cameron Diaz as Fiona, Eddie Murphy as Donkey and Antonio Banderas as Puss in Boots.

Meet the Press: Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy in ‘Shrek Forever After’

Shrek Forever After

LOS ANGELES – On Friday, May 21st, the rest of the film industry will turn green with envy as “Shrek Forever After” is released. The fourth installment of the mega-popular animated series features Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy and Antonio Banderas, as well as new voice talent from Jon Hamm, Craig Robinson and Walt Dohrn.

Slideshow: 41-Image Gallery From L.A. Premiere of ‘Shrek Forever After’

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Walt Dohrn

CHICAGO – This 41-image slideshow contains red carpet images of celebrities arriving at the Los Angeles premiere of “Shrek Forever After” on May 16th, 2010. Celebrities in attendance include Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy, Mike Myers, Antonio Banderas, Lake Bell, Steven Spielberg, and more.

Comedy Blu-Ray Round Up, May 12, 2009: ‘Major League,’ ‘Wayne's World,’ ‘Black Sheep’

Wayne's World

CHICAGO – Paramount Home Video is unleashing waves of catalog titles this month, starting with an interesting quintet of laugh-fests that range wildly in subject matter and quality.

Video: Clip From ‘Inglourious Basterds’ With Quentin Tarantino, Brad Pitt

CHICAGO – Last night’s “American Idol” featured an exclusive clip from the August 21st release of Quentin Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds” starring Brad Pitt, B.J. Novak, Eli Roth, Samuel L. Jackson, Cloris Leachmen, Mike Myers, and Diane Krueger. We have the clip for you below that was reportedly too hot to air on primetime TV during “American Idol.”

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • The King of Comedy

    Something always felt a bit out of place for me in Martin Scorsese’s brilliant “The King of Comedy”, just released on Blu-ray for the first time. I couldn’t put my finger on it but chalked it up to it being thematically ahead of its time in its investigation of the cult of personality that defines modern entertainment.

  • 47 Ronin with Keanu Reeves

    CHICAGO – If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between a director and a producer, let “47 Ronin” explain how the hierarchy of creativity hinders the evolution of even the most straightforward-sounding pitches. “47 Ronin” is the type of samurai movie set in Japan that features native actors speaking only English, while Keanu Reeves stars as an outsider clearly plunked into the picture for stateside star power.

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