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Blu-Ray Review: Brilliant Dissection of Faith in ‘Secret Sunshine’

Secret Sunshine

CHICAGO – The partnership between IFC and The Criterion Collection has led to a number of great releases (“A Christmas Tale,” “Che”) and a few questionable entries (“Life During Wartime”) but rarely has it completely unearthed a film as little-seen as Lee Chang-Dong’s brilliant “Secret Sunshine.” This award-winning dissection of faith amidst tragedy never even received a Chicago release as far as I can remember but it absolutely deserves a wider audience. This is a great film given a strong release by the DVD/Blu-ray series ever.

Blu-Ray Review: Stylish, Fascinating ‘The Good, The Bad, The Weird’

The Good The Bad The Weird

CHICAGO – Our film critic Matt Fagerholm may have felt that “The Good, The Bad, The Weird” valued style over substance to a fault (read his review) but this critic still holds it as one of the best films of the year; a joyful cavalcade of modern action and spaghetti western archetypes that’s unlike anything else released in 2010. Don’t miss this excellent movie now that it’s on Blu-ray.

DVD Review: Excellent ‘Thirst’ Deserves Better Treatment

Thirst

CHICAGO – Easily one of the most interesting and original films of 2009, “Thirst” deserves at least the basic Blu-Ray treatment being given nearly every theatrically released film in the current market or, failing that, at least a special edition DVD. Instead, Focus/Universal has gone the baffling route of releasing a bare bones disc featuring only the film. The movie itself is great enough to warrant a look, but that’s in spite of its home release.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Spike Heels Stage Play

    CHICAGO – If you can remember the 1990s outside of childhood, you are in the glow of middle age, so congratulations. The Brown Paper Box Co. theater ensemble takes us back to those thrilling days of yesteryear with “Spike Heels,” a relationship comedy centering on the co-mingling antics of two couples, with a slight nod toward George Bernard Shaw and the play “Pygmalion” (or its musical counterpart, “My Fair Lady”).

  • Book of Merman, The

    CHICAGO – One potential theater-goer loves the “The Book of Mormon.” The other would rather stay home and watch old Ethel Merman YouTube videos. Pride Films & Theater offers the ultimate solution by combining both in a campy musical, “The Book of Merman.” Yep, two Elder characters from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints meets foghorn singer Ethel Merman.

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