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Ulrich Thomsen

Film Review: Guilt, Grief Wrapped Up in Mystery of ‘The Silence’

CHICAGO – With echoes of “The Vanishing” and “Memories of Murder,” Baran bo Odar’s dread-filled “The Silence” is a character-based thriller that focuses more on the people wrapped up in its web of perversion and murder than the crimes themselves.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 50 Pairs of Passes to ‘The Silence’ at the Music Box Theatre

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 50 pairs of movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of the icy German thriller “The Silence” at Chicago’s Music Box Theatre!

Blu-ray Review: ‘The Thing’ Prequel Almost Works But Misses Paranoia of Original

The Thing

CHICAGO – John Carpenter’s “The Thing” is a brilliant study in paranoia. It is more than a mere horror film. The remake/prequel, recently released on Blu-ray and DVD, is a decent horror film but the comparison to the classic original and some serious mistakes in the final act make “decent” not good enough by association.

Film Review: Unsettling Paranoia, Special Effects Showcase ‘The Thing’

CHICAGO – With Halloween approaching, what will truly scare us at the cinema this month? One strong entry is this weekend’s “The Thing,” the third remake of a wild and mysterious monster movie. It combines a European-style approach to paranoia with some truly unique monster effects.

Blu-Ray Review: Dramatically Satisfying, Oscar-Winning ‘In a Better World’

In a Better World

CHICAGO – Susanne Bier’s “In a Better World” has stuck with me. After seeing it in theaters five months ago, I was a little hard on the film due to the fact that it beat out so many great ones for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, including “Dogtooth,” “Incendies,” and the film that most people thought would win, “Biutiful.” I still question that decision, but this is a stronger film than I first gave it credit for — a bit more shallow and cut-and-dry than it should have been but a dramatically satisfying rental, now available on Blu-ray and DVD.

Film Review: Susanne Bier’s Oscar-Winning ‘In a Better World’

In a Better World
HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Susanne Bier’s “In a Better World” was a surprising winner at the Academy Awards when Best Foreign Language Film was announced, leading many to wonder what could have beaten the critically-acclaimed “Dogtooth” or “Biutiful,” which clearly had a lot of love considering its Best Actor nomination. “In a Better World” must have been pretty great, right? Yes and no. It’s a better film than a few of the Academy’s recent decisions (“Departures” comes to mind), but also nowhere near as complete a film as a number of alternate choices. This category is still a mess, as proven by the win for this interesting but ultimately a bit too shallow examination of revenge and parenthood.

12th Annual EU Film Festival Highlights, Week Three: ‘Angel,’ ‘Left Bank,’ ‘Eden,’ ‘Fear Me Not’

CHICAGO – The third week of the 12th Annual EU Film Festival at the Siskel Film Center is nearly upon us and we’re back to give you an idea of what to expect in the second half of arguably the best fest in the Windy City.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • 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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