CHICAGO – One potential theater-goer loves the “The Book of Mormon.” The other would rather stay home and watch old Ethel Merman YouTube videos. Pride Films & Theater offers the ultimate solution by combining both in a campy musical, “The Book of Merman.” Yep, two Elder characters from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints meets foghorn singer Ethel Merman.
CHICAGO – The memory of South Africa freedom fighter Nelson Mandela, who passed away on December 5th, is filled with deserved accolades and iconography. Director Justin Chadwick and actor Idris Elba brings the man to human life in the essential “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.”
CHICAGO – Director Clint Eastwood has given up on subtlety, choosing instead to tell old-fashioned, direct stories with as much technical skill and dramatic competency as possible. There’s nothing particularly wrong with the legendary director’s “Invictus,” but it’s also not nearly as memorable or thrilling as it could have or, given the true story that it tells, should have been.