Shutter Island

Interview: Patricia Clarkson Takes the Wheel in ‘Learning to Drive’

Learning to Drive, Patricia Clarkson

CHICAGO – The anchoring presence of actress Patricia Clarkson has been familiar to movie audiences for the last three decades. From her debut role as Elliott Ness’s wife in “The Untouchables,” to her role currently as a just-divorced New Yorker in “Learning to Drive,” Clarkson brings depth and character to all of her roles.

Film Feature: The 10 Biggest Oscar Snubs of 2011

CHICAGO – There just wasn’t enough room at this year’s Oscar party for several of the most-deserving candidates. There never is. Like every year, most of the key categories had at least one (and often more) deserving nominee not getting the happy call on Tuesday morning. Who should have? Who should have been left out instead? Here are the big ten.

Film Feature: The 10 Best Films of 2010, Part Two

CHICAGO – On the heels of HollywoodChicago.com’s 10 Best Films of 2010 by Brian Tallerico and Top Overlooked Films of 2010 by Matt Fagerholm, I offer the 10 Best Films of 2010, Part Two, by Patrick McDonald.

Film Feature: The 10 Best Films of 2010

CHICAGO – When we look back on this past year in cinema, what will we remember? Ironically, a year after “Avatar” was supposed to change the movie paradigm forever, it’s the human faces that I most vividly remember from 2010.

Book Review: Dennis Lehane Returns With Sizzling ‘Moonlight Mile’

Moonlight Mile

CHICAGO – Dennis Lehane remains one of our better fiction writers with some of his best-known material being turned into highly-acclaimed films including “Mystic River,” “Gone Baby Gone,” and “Shutter Island.” He returns to his two most beloved characters — Angie Gennaro and Patrick Kenzie — those played by Michelle Monaghan and Casey Affleck in the film version of “GBG” to craft a direct sequel to that novel, “Moonlight Mile,” a reminder of how efficient Lehane can be when it comes to breakneck thriller pacing but a bit of a letdown if it truly is the final book with these memorable detectives.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Shutter Island’ Looks Amazing, But Deserved Better Release

Shutter Island

CHICAGO – I firmly believe that the detractors of Martin Scorsese’s amazing “Shutter Island” will deny they ever criticized this masterful thriller when it was first released. History will be very kind to this dizzying trip through a cinematic funhouse led by arguably our best living filmmaker, but one would never guess it from Paramount’s purely average Blu-ray release.

DVD Review: Coppola’s ‘Tetro’ Arrives With a Wealth of Special Features

Tetro DVD

CHICAGO – It’s been thirty-five years since Francis Ford Coppola wrote an original screenplay for one of his pictures, and though “Tetro” is certainly not in the same league as his last singular written work (1974’s “The Conversation”), it is still the most cinematically exciting, hauntingly beautiful, and achingly personal film he’s made in decades.

Take Trip to Riveting ‘Shutter Island’ With Leonardo DiCaprio

CHICAGO – “Shutter Island” is a riveting trip through a cinematic funhouse led by one of the best filmmakers of all time in Martin Scorsese, who fully employs the copious skills of his most talented collaborators including star Leonardo DiCaprio.

Slideshow: 10-Image Premiere of ‘Shutter Island’ in New York City With Leonardo DiCaprio

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Martin Scorsese (left) and Leonardo DiCaprio for Shutter Island.

CHICAGO – We have a 10-image slideshow of the New York City premiere for the highly anticipated film “Shutter Island” from Feb. 17, 2010. The film opens nationwide on Feb. 19, 2010.

Blu-Ray Review: Every True Movie Fan Must Own ‘GoodFellas’

GoodFellas

CHICAGO – Very, very few movies are as immensely rewatchable as Martin Scorsese’s masterful “GoodFellas,” now released on Blu-ray in a twentieth anniversary edition timed to coincide with the theatrical release of “Shutter Island” this Friday. One of the most influential films of the ’90s is one of those rare works that has lost absolutely none of its power.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Grace, Or the Art of Climbing

    CHICAGO – What is life but a constant climb? The Brown Paper Box Co., one of the most vital storefront theater groups in Chicago, asks that question and more in the significant “Grace, Or the Art of Climbing.” Using a woman’s journey through some difficult situations, the parallels of “the climb” become a artfully performed story that is all inspiration and uplift. The play runs through July 7th, 2019, at Stage 773 in the Belmont Avenue Theater District in Chicago. For more information and tickets, click here.

  • Elizabeth Laidlaw

    CHICAGO – The recent limited series “The Red Line” on CBS-TV was notable for a couple elements – it was set in Chicago and it featured Chicago actors in major roles. Creators Caitlin Parrish and Erica Weiss (from here), cast their Chi-town colleague Elizabeth Laidlaw, who portrayed police officer “Vic” Renna.

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