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North by Northwest Entertainment

Film Review: Dan Byrd Shines in Coming-of-Age Gem ‘Norman’

CHICAGO – His eyes are at once weary and sardonic, brooding and vulnerable. He doesn’t know how to cry for help, apart from crying wolf. He resists the spotlight when it’s placed upon him and yet still craves attention from his peers. He’s deeply cynical about life in general, yet is prone to falling for the sweetness of a pure-hearted soul. And he’d probably be well adjusted if it weren’t for the enormous weight on his shoulders.

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  • 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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    CHICAGO – I can’t recommend this more. “A Field in England” is a flashback and a flash forward all at once. It’s impossible to watch without thinking of great counter culture cinema. In fact when I saw it at Fantastic Fest 2013 it played as part of a double bill with Ken Russell’s “The Devils” (1971). They made perfect cinematic companion pieces. Russell’s film concerned a wayward priest desperate to protect his 17th century city from corruption in the Church only to fall victim to group hysteria when he is, ironically, accused of witchcraft by a jealous nun.

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