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Thomas Dekker

‘Angels Crest’ Takes Lead-Footed Trip Down Misery Lane

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 2.5/5.0
Rating: 2.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Six years after her sentimental debut feature, “On a Clear Day,” filmmaker Gaby Dellal has gotten mired in the wintry sludge of her sophomore effort, “Angels Crest.” This is the sort of film that doesn’t stand a chance of being embraced by many viewers, particularly during an awards season crowded with gems. There’s little to recommend here beyond the icily beautiful cinematography and a few strong performances.

Gregg Araki's ‘Kaboom’ Merrily Enters the Ontological Void

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

CHICAGO – Rarely has the apocalypse appeared as trivial as it does in “Kaboom,” a disarmingly lovable mess of a picture that manages to work in spite of itself. It’s the tenth feature film directed by Queer New Wave icon Gregg Araki, who seems to be in an infinitely better mood than he was fifteen years ago, back when the Reagan era’s ignorance of the AIDS crisis was still festering like an open wound.

‘A Nightmare on Elm Street’ Remake Plays Like a Bad Dream

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 1.0/5.0
Rating: 1.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Samuel Bayer’s remake of Wes Craven’s “A Nightmare on Elm Street” may be about repressed memories coming back in horrific ways, but it ironically ends up one of the least memorable films of 2010 to date. Not as abrasive as the “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” remakes and not as dumb as “The Amityville Horror,” “A Nightmare on Elm Street” is merely forgettable; something never said about the influential original.

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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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