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 – Who would think a robot movie would teach us about being more intuitively “human”? “Chappie” is a very peculiar film – with fighting robots, violence and grit on one side, and the tenderness of finding a nurturing source and a consciousness on the other. It is worth experiencing.
CHICAGO – There are a lot of “Art of the Film” books released over the course of a year. They’re designed for hardcore fans or those with a lot of expendable income and no desire to feature books of actual paintings on their coffee table. Most of them are either mediocre or totally worthless. They’re cheap tie-ins designed to appease fans in a way that registers just above a Happy Meal toy but costs much more. “Elysium: The Art of the Film” is not a cheap tie-in. This is an expertly produced volume that makes one appreciate the detailed work that went into Neill Blomkamp’s #1 film more than mere propaganda.
CHICAGO – “Elysium” is a blunt instrument. It contains all the subtlety of franchise-killer “Terminator: Salvation.” Where Neill Blomkamp’s “District 9” was surprisingly sleek and refined given its low budget and rookie creator, the follow-up proves that more is very often less.
CHICAGO – 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 the highly anticipated sci-fi “Elysium” with Matt Damon and Jodie Foster from the director of “District 9”!
CHICAGO – The Blu-Ray release of “District 9” is one of the best of 2009, a perfectly transferred film with a great selection of special features that enhance the viewer experience of the film itself. “District 9” is one of the most beloved films of last year and Sony deserves credit for treating its diehard fans as well as any studio in the last twelve months with only one major flaw in an otherwise perfect package.
CHICAGO – Neill Blomkamp’s “District 9” is easily one of the most daring, inventive, and original films of the year, a thrill ride through a talented new filmmaker’s unique vision of an alternate universe where the aliens haven’t just landed, they’ve been here for years.