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Film Review: Geekdom Celebrated in ‘Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope’

Comic-Con

CHICAGO – Say the words “San Diego Comic-Con” to a certain comic geek subculture and suddenly heart rates are up and anticipation is in the air. The documentary maker Morgan Spurlock (“Supersize Me”) seeks to capture that feeling in “Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope,” with help from Seth Rogen, Kevin Smith, Stan Lee, Thomas Jane, Josh Whedon, Seth Green and Matt Groening.

TV News: HBO Renews ‘Enlightened,’ Cancels Three Other Series

Enlightened

CHICAGOHBO has such a limited amount of series and so many critical darlings that when they announce a renewal or a cancellation it carries more weight than most networks. They announced four today with no major surprises as we all expected that Golden Globe-nominated “Enlightened” would return for a second season and even fans of “Hung,” “Bored to Death,” and “How to Make It in America” could have guessed that those series were headed in the other direction.

Film Review: ‘I Melt With You’ Succumbs to Shallow Pretensions

I Melt with You Film Review

CHICAGO – Mark Pellington’s “I Melt with You” is one of the worst movies of 2011, but has the benefit of also being among the weirdest. Students of rotten cinema will surely flock to this disaster simply to watch it in morbid, mouth-gaping awe. Yet without a scenery chewing wild card like Nicolas Cage in the ensemble, this mournful mess is far from an enjoyable guilty pleasure.

TV Review: Mediocre ‘Hung,’ ‘How to Make It in America’ Return to HBO

Hung S3

CHICAGO – Not all HBO shows are created equal. While critics have devoted thousands of words to the brilliance of shows like “Boardwalk Empire,” “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” and “Game of Thrones,” a few other offerings from the most important TV network of the last quarter-century have gone under the radar.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘When It Was a Game,’ ‘61*’ Make Great Dad’s Day Gifts

61*

CHICAGO – Baseball is a game made for the romantic hyperbole of otherwise stoic men. The appreciation of the game is often passed from Dad to son, so just in time for Father’s Day along comes two great baseball films, the Billy Crystal directed “61*” and the “When it Was a Game” collection.

Blu-Ray Review: Fans of ‘The Dark Knight’ Should Check Out ‘Batman: Under the Red Hood’

CHICAGO – With easily the darkest subject matter and most intense level of violence to date in the DC Universe series of PG-13 animated film, “Batman: Under the Red Hood” is far from your typical Saturday morning cartoon. This is morally complex material much closed to “The Dark Knight” than “Batman & Robin,” and it’s a smash success for the franchise, resulting in easily the best installment in years.

TV Review: HBO’s ‘Hung’ Hopes Viewers Are Ready For Second Date

Hung S2

CHICAGO – Male prostitute Ray Drecker (Thomas Jane) and his pimp Tanya Skagle (Jane Adams) are back in the second season premiere of “Hung,” a show that improved drastically over its first year (check out our Blu-ray review here) and seems primed for continued growth in its sophomore outing. Shows like “Hung” often fine-tune their characters and themes between the first and second year and this unusual comedy is primed for breakout success.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘Hung: The Complete First Season’ Developed Right Chemistry

Hung S1

CHICAGOHBO’s “Hung” doesn’t quite live up to the incredibly high standards of the best network on television but the sporadic writing on the show and very strong ensemble did produce enough interesting dramatic and comedic moments to warrant a look on the excellent Blu-ray release of the first season, timed to coincide with the premiere of season two on Sunday, June 27th, 2010.

TV Review: HBO’s ‘Hung’ With Thomas Jane is Surprisingly Limp

CHICAGO – Pardon the obvious metaphors, but when you name a show “Hung” and feature a motivational speech about the lead character finding “his tool,” it’s damn-near impossible not to fall into the same pattern.

DVD Review: ‘Killshot’ With Mickey Rourke, Diane Lane Finally Gets Released

Killshot

CHICAGO – How does a movie with Oscar-nominated leads, a prominent director, beloved source material, and an excellent supporting cast get delayed for so long that it inevitably gets quietly shuffled off to DVD? Well, if history tells us anything, having a complicated and troubled project in the Weinstein Company archives doesn’t help a movie like “Killshot,” an action thriller that has its flaws but none so big that it deserved such an unusual and lackluster fate.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Everybody, Brown Paper Box Co

    CHICAGO – When is the last time a stage play, based in an intimate setting, made you think about your life, death, and the destiny inherent in both? “Everybody,” staged by Brown Paper Box Co. (BPBCo), is such a play, and the energetic aura and sense of surprise that the show contains is soul soothing wonder. The show has various evening/matinee performances at the Pride Arts Center in Chicago run through August 12, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • Not One Batu

    CHICAGO – The State of Hawaii may be one of the most misunderstood in America. Because of its reputation as a tourist mecca, the fact that native peoples live and work there like any other place is hard to imagine. Also unimaginable is the drug use of island residents, but playwright and Hawaiian native Hannah li-Epstein wrote about it in her stage play “Not One Batu,” now in its Premiere Chicago run at the Berger Park Coach House through July 28th, 2018. For more information, including tickets, click here.

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