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.
CHICAGO – The world of creation, and the imagination behind it, gets an honorable and elegantly performed treatment in the fascinating “Saving Mr. Banks.” What seems like a “making of” film about the legendary “Mary Poppins,” becomes much more rich in symbolism and consideration.
CHICAGO – Here are a few words that adequately describe NBC’s “Camp,” a Summer series premiering this Wednesday, July 10, 2013 — “Likable,” “Amiable,” “Cute,” “Fun.” It’s not designed to challenge your dramatic expectations and delivers exactly what you’d expect it to deliver but the cast has some notable stand-outs and the whole thing has the feel of a long weekend away in the Summer — fun while it lasts if not overly memorable.
CHICAGO – The new film “The Scapegoat” made a premiere splash at the 48th Chicago International Film Festival, with lead actor Matthew Rhys – of TV’s “Brothers & Sisters” – and director Charles Sturridge walking the Red Carpet on Thursday, October 18th. The festival wraps up this week on October 25th.
CHICAGO – Disney and ABC Studios are releasing waves of DVDs in the coming weeks that are designed to allow you to catch up before new episodes of your favorite shows premiere or, as is the case with two of the first titles, remember the days when they were still on the air. The most recent seasons of “Brothers & Sisters” and “Off the Map” hit stores this week, August 23rd, 2011, followed by “Cougar Town” and “Desperate Housewives” next week, August 30th, 2011.
CHICAGO – Last week we covered several of the more notable rookie programs of the just-passed TV year and their inaugural TV-on-DVD season sets. This week, we’re back with a few of the veterans of the field, three shows that have never become critical smashes but have all developed their own devoted followings for good reason.