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Niels Arestrup

Blu-ray Review: Lavish Set For Steven Spielberg’s ‘War Horse’

War Horse

CHICAGO – Steven Spielberg’s “War Horse” is a well-intentioned and well-made film that nonetheless comes off as a major disappointment both in the context of the filmography of one of our most important filmmakers and the potential of the storytelling here. It’s a technically strong film and so its strengths are amplified by HD and the Blu-ray includes a healthy quantity of special features but the movie is a disappointment.

Blu-ray Review: Mélusine Mayance Mesmerizes in ‘Sarah’s Key’

Sarah's Key Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Sometimes one performance can bolster the impact of an entire production. That’s certainly the case with Gilles Paquet-Brenner’s overlooked adaptation of Tatiana de Rosnay’s bestseller. Though the picture’s marquee name is Kristin Scott Thomas, her character merely provides a modern framework for the real story, set during the massive 1942 deportation of Jewish civilians from France.

Film Review: ‘Sarah’s Key’ Unlocks the Ever-Present Past

Sarah's Key

CHICAGO – The old saying, “those who cannot remember the past is doomed to repeat it” applies succinctly in “Sarah’s Key,” a Holocaust film with a French twist. Kristin Scott Thomas plays an American journalist who uncovers the facts in a less-remembered incident that reverberates to now.

Interview: Director Gilles Paquet-Brenner Opens the Door With ‘Sarah’s Key’

Sarah's Key

CHICAGO – For every instance of “monumental” history, there are a series of events surrounding it that gets swept under the rug, but have the same bearing as the bigger occurrence. Director Gilles Paquet-Brenner tells one of those background stories in “Sarah’s Key,” a sorrowful piece of French history during World War II.

Blu-Ray Review: French Drama ‘A Prophet’ Demands Your Attention

CHICAGO – One of the best films of the last several years was recently released on Blu-ray and DVD courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics in the riveting, remarkable, and simply amazing “A Prophet.”

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Bobby Pin Girls

    CHICAGO – The “breeder years” are difficult on everyone, as the biological imperative becomes overwhelming and the couplings that result yield both discovery and misadventure. Nothing Without a Company’s new play “Bobby Pin Girls” highlight two such Millennial women, roommates who are having man trouble, although the argument can be made that it’s eternally “boy trouble.” The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Chicago Mosaic School through December 3rd, 2017. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • Transformers 5 front

    CHICAGO – Knock me over with a feather kids, but I enjoyed “Transformers: The Last Knight.” Maybe it was in comparison to the others or maybe director Michael Bay has beaten me into submission, but this one had the right story elements and casting to make it work, with exceptions of course. It’s goofiness is its charm, and it was released on Blu-Ray/DVD on September 26th, 2017 (Digital HD already available).

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