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Demian Bichir

‘Alien: Covenant’ is a Pale Copy of Previous Best Films

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.0/5.0
Rating: 2.0/5.0

CHICAGO – It’s worth noting that the Alien series extends back nearly 40 years, and yet the chest-bursting Xenomorphs have produced a grand total of exactly two good movies. The orginal “Alien” and “Aliens” are great films that stand the test of the time, while every other entry in this series would require a significant stretch of the imagination to be called barely watchable.

Quentin Tarantino Stays Familiar in ‘The Hateful Eight’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Story-wise, there is not much difference in “The Hateful Eight” – regarding themes and violence – that writer/director Quentin Tarantino hasn’t explored before. But it is also an outrageous and big western tale, and it’s presented in some theaters in a huge 70mm screen format.

Melissa McCarthy, Sandra Bullock Fuel ‘The Heat’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.0/5.0
Rating: 3.0/5.0

CHICAGO – An incredibly talented ensemble elevates a pretty pedestrian script in the just-funny-enough “The Heat,” a movie that gets better as it goes along, largely because its two mega-talented stars carry it over some mediocre patches of writing. Melissa McCarthy and Sandra Bullock simply have unimpeachable comic timing.

Mexicans in America Keep Striving in ‘A Better Life’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – One of the most contentious issues in America now is the handling of “illegal” immigrants from Mexico. They, like anyone else, want a better circumstance for themselves and their families, as director Chris Weitz explores in the new film “A Better Life.”

Benicio Del Toro Shines in Steven Soderbergh’s Mesmerizing ‘Che’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 5.0/5.0
Rating: 5.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Steven Soderbergh’s “Che” not only features one of the best recent performances by the excellent Benicio Del Toro but this challenging biopic, unlike any that has been made in years, is one of the best films of 2008.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Monica Raymund on set for 'Tanya'

    CHICAGOTV fans know Monica Raymund as paramedic Gabby Dawson on the long-running “Chicago Fire.” But the talented actor is expanding her range, debuting her first film as director, “Tanya,” at the Midwest Independent Film Festival on Tuesday, August 1st, 2017. The short film – written by Sam Forman – will be part of “Female Filmmakers Night” at the Midwest Indie, and is part of Raymund’s involvement with Hidden Tears Project, an organization dedicated to raising consciousness by creating media on gender inequality, sexual abuse and human trafficking.

  • They're Playing Our Song

    CHICAGO – During the late disco era of the 1970s, an unusual musical opened on Broadway. Essentially a two person stage play, “They’re Playing Our Song” involved a songwriter and a lyricist who develop a stronger connection than just writing partners. The always passionate Brown Paper Box Co. of Chicago has unearthed this chestnut with a bright and fun revival at the Rivendell Theatre through August 20th, 2017.

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