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Spirited Away

Film Review: Wondrous Last Act for Hayao Miyazaki in ‘The Wind Rises’

The Wind Rises

CHICAGO – The master animator and film legend Hayao Miyazaki (“Howl’s Moving Castle,” “Spirited Away,” “Princess Mononoke”) announced his retirement after his latest film, “The Wind Rises.” He is often called “Japan’s Walt Disney,” but there is more to him then that, a soul and a mystery that is revealed in the stages of his animated art, and his contribution to artistic culture will continue to influence for generations to come. “The Wind Rises” is nominated for Best Animated Film at the 2014 Academy Awards.

Film News: Patrick McDonald, CFCA Present ‘Spirited Away’ at Gene Siskel Film Center on July 13, 2012

Spirited Away

CHICAGO – The Chicago Film Critics Association (CFCA) and the Gene Siskel Film Center in Chicago are teaming up to present “Castles in the Sky,” a 15-film series of Japan’s Studio Ghibli, highlighting the exquisite work of Ghibli animator Hayao Miyazaki. As part of the series, Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com will introduce and lead a post-film discussion of Miyazaki’s classic, “Spirited Away,” July 13th at 6pm.

Film News: Gene Siskel Film Center, CFCA to Hold ‘Castles in the Sky’ Retrospective

Castles in the Sky Retrospective

CHICAGO – Fans of the legendary filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki and his magnificent Japanese animation studio, Studio Ghibli, have a cinematic treat in store this summer. The Chicago Film Critics Association has teamed up with the Gene Siskel Film Center at 164 N. State St. to present “Castles in the Sky”: a 15-part retrospective showcasing the studio’s best work to date.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 5 Blu-Ray, DVD Combo Packs to ‘The Secret World of Arrietty’

The Secret World of Arrietty combo pack

CHICAGO – In our latest animated edition of the HollywoodChicago.com Hookup, we have 5 Blu-ray and DVD combo packs up for grabs to the home entertainment release of “The Secret World of Arrietty” from the studio that brought you the Oscar-winning best animated feature “Spirited Away” and “Ponyo”!

Decalogue: HollywoodChicago.com Evaluates Films From 2000 to 2009

Uma Thurman in "Kill Bill Vol. 1"

CHICAGO – In developing Top Ten film lists every year, the “critic” tends to move on and simply forget what they said in previous annual evaluations. Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com looks back, with less fear than expected.

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  • Bad Words

    Looming over “Bad Words” is the potential it could have had, as is, were it released ten years ago. With its focus of R-rated behavior poking at the projected innocence of children, along with the couple of chromosomes that keep Bateman’s Trilby from being a Vince Vaughn character, this movie is certainly a product of the comedies that have sculpted out the manchild story in the past decade.

  • Winter's Tale

    The theatrical poster for “Winter’s Tale,” after promising that “It’s not a true story, it’s a love story,” made a large demand from its viewers at the bottom: “This Valentine’s Day, Believe In Miracles.” While there is indeed a difference between filmmaking and marketing, it is hard to not imagine writer/director Akiva Goldsman whispering “believe in miracles” into the ear of every executive who helped “Winter’s Tale” come to life, immediately after throwing glitter on them.

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