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Blu-ray Review: ‘Mud’ Has the Feel of a Modern American Classic

Mud

CHICAGO – Maybe it’s the indeterminate time period that doesn’t rely on modern pop culture references or technology. Maybe it’s the sense that we’re watching a great Young Adult novel turned into a film. Maybe it’s the timeless themes of rebellion, love, and loss. Whatever it is, “Mud” already feels like a classic.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 50 Pairs of Passes to ‘Mud’ With Matthew McConaughey, Reese Witherspoon

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 50 pairs of movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of the highly anticipated “Mud” with Matthew McConaughey!

Blu-ray Review: Terrible ‘This Means War’ Denies Its Obvious Romantic Subtext

This Means War Blu-ray

CHICAGO – McG’s “This Means War” could’ve been an interesting comedy if it had actually been about the undeniable love between its two male leads. Not since Lynn Shelton’s “Humpday” has a film so blatantly portrayed the homoerotic tendencies within close male friendships. Yet by denying its own subtext, the film is ultimately as clueless and insufferable as its one-note characters.

Film Review: ‘This Means War’ With Reese Witherspoon is an Attack on Movie Decency

CHICAGO – McG’s “This Means War” with Chris Pine, Tom Hardy, and Reese Witherspoon is an aggressively annoying movie. It isn’t just bad. It grates. It frustrates. It baffles with its incompetence.

Blu-ray Review: Old-Fashioned Melodrama of Effective ‘Water For Elephants’

Water For Elephants

CHICAGO – Given my general aversion to modern soap operas, I was understandably nervous about reviewing Francis Lawrence’s “Water For Elephants,” an over-heated romance based on the best-selling book. Much to my surprise, this is an effective drama that should remind viewers of “the kind of movies they don’t make any more.” It would have been right at home in the Hollywood of the ’40s and ’50s and should make a satisfying rental for nearly any audience willing to go for the cheesy ride.

Trailer Tracking: ‘Wanderlust,’ ‘Safe House,’ ‘This Means War,’ More

CHICAGO – Now that we’re so close to the holiday season, it means that the whole movie trailer landscape has changed yet again. We’ve spent the last three months watching the previews for the Christmas season blockbusters and the end-of-the-year Oscar hopefuls nonstop.

Film Review: Tensionless ‘Water For Elephants’ Fatally Mismatches Leads, Casts Spot-On Supporters

CHICAGO – While Robert “Twilight” Pattinson has persuasively branched out beyond his typecasting of reanimated and preternatural corpses, his miscast union in the tensionless “Water for Elephants” with pin-up circus spectacle Reese Witherspoon works as well as an elephant trying to spoon a sworn-enemy lion.

DVD Review: Great James L. Brooks Misfires With ‘How Do You Know’

How Do You Know

CHICAGO – You won’t find a much bigger fan of James L. Brooks’ “Broadcast News,” one of my favorite romantic comedies of the ’80s, but there’s simply no denying that he’s lost his touch for character that once made him one of the best living writers. It may not be quite as big a disaster as “Spanglish,” but his newest romantic comedy “How Do You Know,” recently released on Blu-ray and DVD, is a mess, a blend of unbelievable characters, awkward pacing, and forgettable plotting that makes it one of the biggest disappointments of 2010.

Film Review: Paul Rudd, Reese Witherspoon in Gloriously Romantic ‘How Do You Know’

How Do You Know

CHICAGO – Writer/Director James L. Brooks has been producing prime entertainment for nearly 50 years now, and proves he has not lost a step in ‘How Do You Know.’ This film of love, loss, power and especially romance is a great showcase for the talents of Reese Witherspoon, Paul Rudd, Owen Wilson and the great Jack Nicholson.

Blu-Ray Review: Tiresome ‘Four Christmases’ is Four Too Many

Four Christmases

CHICAGO – How has Vince Vaughn become one of the most boring actors in America? It has little to do with his performances and everything to do with his career choices. Sure, Vaughn has pretty much made a habit out of playing the exact same guy since “Wedding Crashers”: a fast-talking, self-absorbed, overgrown adolescent whose funniest quips are delivered under the breath and between punch-lines.

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  • Emmy Awards, Bryan Cranston

    LOS ANGELES – It was one more lap around the victory track for the AMC-TV show ‘Breakling Bad,’ as the gritty drama about a teacher turned meth dealer took home six Primetime Emmy Awards at the 66th ceremony on August 25th. ‘Modern Family’ took home the statue for Outstanding Comedy Series for a a fifth straight year.

  • Knick, The

    CHICAGO – Cinemax’s ominous new series “The Knick” is a hospital drama that’s very much in the voice of its director, Steven Soderbergh. Set in New York City at the turn of the 20th century, the series presents the medical world as it inches closer and closer to modernity, while making contemporary parallels to the desperate hustle by surgery room clients and their doctors alike regarding treatment of the human body. What has changed in the politics of medicine? What hasn’t?

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