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Yvonne Strahovski

Blu-ray Review: Fifth, Final Season of Beloved ‘Chuck’

Chuck S5

CHICAGO – If television shows were deemed a success or failure based on the number of emails, comments, and call-ins to radio shows that were sent on their behalf, NBC’s “Chuck” would be one of the biggest programs of the last two decades. Every time we wrote about it or discussed it on the radio show, people got excited. The show didn’t have many fans, but they were LOYAL and that’s why it stayed on the air much longer than it should have based on pure ratings numbers and that’s why WB has treated fans right through five Blu-ray releases.

Blu-ray Review: ‘Killer Elite’ is Lackluster Release For Lackluster Film

Killer Elite

CHICAGO – “Killer Elite” is one of those home releases that makes me wonder about the future of Blu-ray. It’s clearly not an edition designed for fans of this awful action movie, even if one does assume that it’s a very small group of people since it has practically no special features. And there really aren’t any Blockbusters any more, buying these things in bulk with a design on renting them. So, why not just download it? With more and more people able to download in HD, lackluster releases like that for “Killer Elite” are going to be the first to go the way of the VHS tape.

TV Review: Fan-Favorite ‘Chuck’ Returns For Final Season

Chuck

CHICAGO – There have been a number of casualties of the debacle of “The Jay Leno Show” but one has to believe that were NBC not in such dire straits when it comes to ratings (an increasingly depressing situation for the network with new lows nearly every week) that “Chuck” would have been canceled years ago. The program has been on “bubble watch” since its first season, when it dipped below 60th place in the weekly ratings. And yet here we are, reviewing the fifth-season premiere of the show that simply wouldn’t die.

Film Review: ‘Killer Elite’ Mistakes Cliché For Action

CHICAGO – “Killer Elite” is an exhausting, nonsensical, illogical, loud collection of action clichés masquerading as a modern action film. It features characters less three-dimensional than most cartoons doing and saying things that are only done and said in movies. Bad movies. Really bad movies.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 40 Pairs of Chicago Passes to ‘Killer Elite’ With Robert De Niro, Jason Statham

Killer Elite with Robert De Niro and Jason Statham

CHICAGO – In our latest action/thriller edition of HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film, we have 40 admit-two movie passes up for grabs to the advance Chicago screening of the new film “Killer Elite” starring Jason Statham, Clive Owen and Robert De Niro!

TV Rumor: NBC Has Reportedly Renewed ‘Chuck’

CHICAGO – We won’t know for sure until Sunday at the earliest (when NBC holds a press conference call about their official Monday fall schedule announcement), but several outlets are reporting that, drum roll please, “Chuck” is coming back. The annual bubble show that this critic predicted would get the death-sentence reprieve has been saved yet again.

DVD Reviews: ‘Brothers and Sisters,’ ‘Chuck,’ ‘Supernatural’

Supernatural

CHICAGOLast week we covered several of the more notable rookie programs of the just-passed TV year and their inaugural TV-on-DVD season sets. This week, we’re back with a few of the veterans of the field, three shows that have never become critical smashes but have all developed their own devoted followings for good reason.

TV Review: Confident, Clever ‘Chuck’ Returns With New Energy

Chuck: Season Three Premiere

CHICAGO – After a second season that saw already-low ratings decline, NBC took a chance by bringing “Chuck” back for a third, shortened season. As the network has struggled this year due to a number of horrible decisions (most of them related to Jay Leno), most of its lineup has been hit. Let’s hope “Chuck” bucks the trend because this cult hit has arguably never been better.

DVD Round Up, Nov. 19, 2009: ‘Spread,’ ‘Open Road,’ ‘Train’

The Open Road

CHICAGO – The DVD Round-Up is back! Did you miss us? HollywoodChicago.com’s intermittent column designed to serve as a safety net for releases that may otherwise fall without notice is back with a motley crew of titles that have nearly nothing in common. Classic TV, drama, horror, copious sex, and Justin Timberlake. You make the connections.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • 47 Ronin with Keanu Reeves

    CHICAGO – If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between a director and a producer, let “47 Ronin” explain how the hierarchy of creativity hinders the evolution of even the most straightforward-sounding pitches. “47 Ronin” is the type of samurai movie set in Japan that features native actors speaking only English, while Keanu Reeves stars as an outsider clearly plunked into the picture for stateside star power.

  • A Field in England (teaser)

    CHICAGO – I can’t recommend this more. “A Field in England” is a flashback and a flash forward all at once. It’s impossible to watch without thinking of great counter culture cinema. In fact when I saw it at Fantastic Fest 2013 it played as part of a double bill with Ken Russell’s “The Devils” (1971). They made perfect cinematic companion pieces. Russell’s film concerned a wayward priest desperate to protect his 17th century city from corruption in the Church only to fall victim to group hysteria when he is, ironically, accused of witchcraft by a jealous nun.

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