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 – “Dom Hemingway” begins with a tight close-up on a barely recognizable Jude Law, portraying the title character. He’s giving a monologue, literally spraying the words. When the circumstance is revealed as to what is happening to him, there is an awareness that this is not going to be your Daddy’s petty safecracker ex-con film.
CHICAGO – The wake of the 1960s still resonates on our shores, and entertainment was a viable leader during the era for breaking new barriers. At the recent Hollywood Celebrities & Memorabilia Show, Shirley Knight, Barbara Parkins and Victoria Sellers were reminders of those special times.
CHICAGO – If you love movies, you love Blake Edwards. The iconic comic director, best known for teaming with Peter Sellers in a series of wacky Pink Panther adventures, also directed such classics as “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” “Days of Wine and Roses,” “The Great Race” “10” and “Victor Victoria.” Blake Edwards died Wednesday at age 88.
CHICAGO – As a character in Syfy’s version of “Alice” says, “Does this look like a kid’s story to you?” Excepting, of course, the beloved Disney version, there have actually been a number of takes on “Alice in Wonderland” arguably made more for adults than children. Two such versions from very different eras have been released on Blu-ray and DVD to coincide with the theatrical dominance of Johnny Depp & Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland”. Can’t get enough of Alice and The Mad Hatter? Pick up one or both of these.
CHICAGO – I have to admit to a bit of trepidation every time a studio outside of the widely acknowledged masters tries their hand at catalog releases but the Lionsgate/StudioCanal Blu-ray releases of “Contempt,” “The Ladykillers,” and “Ran” are spectacular. Not only do the films look amazing in HD but they’ve been given copious special features. Don’t miss them.
CHICAGO – Stanley Kubrick’s “Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying And Love the Bomb” is nearly as important a film today as when it was released, over 45 years ago. The Anniversary Special Edition of the comedy classic is now available on Blu-Ray and it’s a must-own for any true film historian.
Blu-Ray Rating: 3.5/5.0
CHICAGO – Chance the Gardener (Peter Sellers), a character who notoriously said “I like to watch,” would probably be mesmerized by the 30th anniversary Blu-Ray release of “Being There” from Warner Brothers. Sadly, fans of the film that are more accustomed to the modern world may be a little underwhelmed.