CHICAGO – The issue of gender identity, especially for those who are born with a vagueness as to what to call themselves between/beyond boy and girl, has come front and center in the U.S., both with the legalization of gay marriage and the callous repudiation of identity by trying to pass laws dismissing it (the North Carolina “bathroom” laws). The performance companies of The Living Canvas and Nothing Without a Company is currently staging “[Trans]formation,” which presents gender identity art by six performers, who perform most of the play in the nude.
CHICAGO – I could (and will) watch “The Illusionist” over and over again. It is a stunning, gorgeous, mesmerizing experience. When the history books are written, I don’t think we will EVER have as strong a group of nominees in the Oscar category for Best Animated Film as we did last year when “Toy Story 3,” “How to Train Your Dragon,” and “The Illusionist” stood tall. All three would have won in many other years.
CHICAGO – Presuming the Academy makes the logical choices, the competition for the Oscar for 2010’s Best Animated Film should feature three of the best films of the medium in many years – “Toy Story 3,” “How to Train Your Dragon,” and the least-heralded of the three, the beautiful “The Illusionist.”