October 2019

Podtalk: Buddy Guy of ‘The Torch’ on Red Carpet at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Buddy Guy, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – Closing Night of the 55th Chicago International Film Festival was a celebration of a great one, the legendary Blues Man Buddy Guy, who came to Chicago in 1957 and made his mark on music from then on and forever. Filmmaker Jim Farrell captures it all in “The Torch,” the Closing Night documentary.

Red-Carpet Slideshow: The Faces and Movies of the 55th Chicago International Film Festival

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Gigi Pritzker, Producer of Opening Night film ‘Motherless Brooklyn.’

CHICAGO – That’s a wrap! The 55th Chicago International Film Festival, which concluded on Sunday, October 27th, brought glam and excitement to a high energy audience of Windy City film buffs. And they brought the star power to the Red Carpet, including Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne, WWE legend C.M.

Podtalk: Gael García Bernal on the Red Carpet at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Gael Garcia Bernal, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – It was a Tribute Night at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival on October 26th, 2019, and the honoree was actor Gael García Bernal (“Mozart in the Jungle,” “Coco”), who was showcasing his latest film as director, “Chicuarotes.” A large gathering of his ardent fan base surrounded his walk on the Red Carpet before the screening.

Podtalk: Michael Shannon is Electric in ‘The Current War’

CHICAGO – It is a solid assertion that actor Michael Shannon is one of the finer performers currently working in stage and film. Recently he brought to light the real-life character of George Westinghouse, as he was rival to Thomas Edison (Benedict Cumberbatch) for control of the new fangled electricity grid in ‘The Current War.’

Film News: ‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’ is Top Film at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Portrait of a Lady on Fire

CHICAGO – The Chicago International Film Festival is competitive, and the 55th edition presented its awards on October 25th, 2019, at CHEZ venue in Chicago. The winner of the Gold Hugo as Best International Film was “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” (France), directed by Céline Sclamma.

CLOSING DAY 12 Podtalk: Jim Farrell of 'The Torch’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Torch, The

CHICAGO – Closing Night at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival will have a decidedly Chicago-centric feel. The legendary Buddy Guy, the Blues guitar man from Louisiana – who made his mark in the South Side clubs of the Windy City, and then internationally – is the subject of a new documentary, “The Torch,” which is directed by Jim Farrell.

DAY 11 Podtalk: 'The First Rainbow Coalition’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

First Rainbow Coalition, The

CHICAGO – A little known part of Chicago history has been revived in a new documentary called “The First Rainbow Coalition.” Filmmaker Ray Santisteban tells a comprehensive story of the first people-powered activist group that rose from the coming together of races and city sectors to fight police brutality and poverty.

Podtalk: Actress Thomasin McKenzie Hops Into ‘Jojo Rabbit’

CHICAGO – Thomasin McKenzie is a 19-year-old actress with a purposeful, intellectual and historical approach to her craft, and those characteristics are on display in her latest film, “Jojo Rabbit.” McKenzie portrays Elsa, a teenage girl who is hiding from the Nazis during World War II, and is aided by the title character.

DAY TEN Podtalk: ‘The Components of Love’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Miriam Bliese, THE COMPONENTS OF LOVE

CHICAGO – When a director makes her international debut, there is a certain magic in the air. German director Miriam Bliese chose the 55th Chicago International Film Festival for that particular showcase, with her first feature film “The Components of Love.” The film will have its second screening at the Fest TODAY, October 25th at 5:30pm.

DAY NINE Podtalk: Haroula Rose of ‘Once Upon a River’ at 55th Chicago International Film Fest

Haroula Rose and Bonnie Jo Campbell of ONCE UPON A RIVER

CHICAGO – A Chicago director comes into focus with her debut film, “Once Upon a River” with a prime time screening on Friday, October 25th, 2019, at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival. Haroula Rose is a local filmmaker and notable musician who shot this film in Antioch, Illinois.

Exclusive Photos: C.M. Punk in 'Girl on the Third Floor’ at the 55th Chicago International Film Fest

C.M. Punk, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – The film ‘Girl on the Third Floor’ caused a sensation at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival in the “After Dark” series screenings, selling out two show on October 18th, 2019. Beforehand at the Red Carpet, cast members Phil Brooks (also known as C.M.

DAY EIGHT Podtalk: Maura Delpero of ‘Maternal’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Maura Delpero of MATERNAL

CHICAGO – A new director screening is one of the most exciting events of any film festival, and Maura Delpero will represent her narrative film, “Maternal” at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival today (October 23rd) at 5:45pm. This exploration of motherhood and desire is Delpero’s first fiction film, after two documentaries.

DAY SEVEN Podtalk: Thomasin McKenzie of ‘Jojo Rabbit,' 55th Chicago International Film Fest

Thomasin McKenzie, photo by Pamela Powell

CHICAGO – Thomasin McKenzie – a rising young actor – has just had her second high profile role, as Elsa in the upcoming “Jojo Rabbit.” The 55th Chicago International Film Festival had a special screening of the film on October 21st, 2019, and New Zealand native McKenzie walked the Red Carpet. The Film Festival continues through October 27th.

Film Review: 'Zombieland: Double Tap' Not Fresh But Still Has Some Life

CHICAGO - Zombieland: Double Tap lacks the freshness or the belly laughs of its predecessor, but I was surprised to see that this outrageously overqualified cast has not worn out its welcome. It’s ridiculous that three Oscar nominees and one Oscar winner headline a movie devoted solely to blowing zombies up. But when you employ Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin, you’re going to get some unexpected surprises.

'Zombieland: Double Tap' Not As Fresh But Still Has Some Life Left

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

CHICAGO - Zombieland: Double Tap lacks the freshness or the belly laughs of its predecessor, but I was surprised to see that this outrageously overqualified cast has not worn out its welcome. It’s ridiculous that three Oscar nominees and one Oscar winner headline a movie devoted solely to blowing zombies up. But when you employ Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin, you’re going to get some unexpected surprises.

DAY SIX Podtalk: Chinonye Chukwu for ‘Clemency’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Chinonye Chukwu, photo by Joe Arce.

CHICAGO – “I’m a filmmaker” proclaimed director Chinonye Chukwu on the Red Carpet at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival, before the screening of her new film “Clemency.” That exchange took place on Black Perspectives Night, October 19th, 2019, and it expressed the passion of creating the film.

DAY FIVE Podtalk: Producer Gigi Pritzker at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Gigi Pritzker, Photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – Another member of the notable Pritzker family has been making a name, in this instance the film business. Gigi Pritzker is a veteran producer who has guided films like “Drive,” “The Way Way Back” and “Hell or High Water.” She walked the Red Carpet on Opening Night (October 16th, 2019) of the 55th Chicago International Film Festival for her new film as producer, “Motherless Brooklyn.”

DAY FOUR Podtalk: ‘Knives and Skin’ at 55th Chicago International Film Fest on October 19, 2019

Jennifer Reed, photo by Joe Arce.

CHICAGO – A local film puts a spotlight into the popular “After Dark” series on DAY FOUR of the 55th Chicago International Film Festival. The “Knives and Skin,” by director Jennifer Reeder expressed many genres, and will screen on October 19th, 2019 (9:45pm) at the AMC River East 21 in Chicago.

Film News: Season Nine of Asian Pop-Up Cinema Honors Kenneth Tsang on Closing Night

2019 APUC Closing Night

CHICAGO – Season Nine of Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema (APUC) had a grand finale on its Closing Night on October 10th, 2019, by honoring one of the most prolific character actors in Hong Kong cinema with a Lifetime Achievement Award … the incomparable Kenneth Tsang.

DAY THREE Podtalk: ‘Sole’ at the 55th Chicago International Film Fest on October 18, 2019

Sole

CHICAGO – A film that goes deep into lives thrown together by circumstance highlights DAY THREE of the 55th Chicago International Film Festival. The Polish/Italian “Sole” is part of the new directors competition, a debut by Carlo Sironi on October 18th, 2019 (8pm) at the AMC River East 21 in Chicago.

DAY TWO Podtalk: ‘Girl on the Third Floor’ at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Girl on the Third Floor

CHICAGO – One of the more popular series at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival is their “After Dark” screenings, with the most notorious of 2019 horror unspooling throughout the late night hours. One of the best is “Girl on the Third Floor, which is directed by Travis Stevens, and features Phil Brooks (also known as C.M.

Film News: ‘Motherless Brooklyn’ Opens 55th Chicago International Film Fest, Oct. 16, 2019

Motherless Brooklyn

CHICAGO – The 55th Chicago International Film Festival Opening Night presents one of the most anticipated films of the Fall awards season. “Motherless Brooklyn” is adapted for the screen (from a novel), directed by and features actor Edward Norton. The rest of the powerhouse cast includes Bruce Willis, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Willem Dafoe, Alec Baldwin, Bobby Cannavale and Leslie Mann.

Film Feature: Navigating the 55th Chicago International Film Festival

CHICAGO – The Windy City’s greatest annual cinema celebration is upon us, and the 55th Chicago International Film Festival is about to crank up the projection machines for 11 days of amazing cinema treats, from October 16th through the 27th, 2019. How does a film buff or curious participant navigate the waters of the festival? HollywoodChicago.com is here to guide you.

Film News: Chicago screening for ‘Coriander and a Penny’s Worth of Lonesome,’ Oct. 14, 2019

Coriander and a Penny's Worth of Lonesome

CHICAGO – A special public screening of a new animated film “Coriander and a Penny’s Worth of Lonesome” will take place on Monday, October 14th, 2019 (7pm), at the Film Row Cinema at Columbia College in Chicago, 1104 South Wabash Avenue, 8th Floor.

Film News: Character Actor Robert Forster Dies at 78

LOS ANGELES – The unforgettable actor Robert Forster had one of the most celebrated of “second acts” in show biz history, but he would humbly characterize himself as a “working actor,” performing in film and TV for over 50 years. Forster passed away on October 11th, 2019, in Los Angeles. He was 78 years old.

Podtalk: Kenneth Tsang, Lifetime Achievement Recipient at Asian Pop-Up Cinema, Oct. 10, 2019

Kenneth Tsang, 'The Attorney'

CHICAGO – Season Nine of Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema (APUC) is coming to its grand finale, and it closes by honoring one of the most prolific character actors in Hong Kong cinema with its Lifetime Achievement Award … the incomparable Kenneth Tsang.

Podtalk: The Animated Rob Paulsen Offers ‘Voice Lessons’

CHICAGO – Who are the voices in our lives that really matter? If you were a cartoon fan in the 1980s and ‘90s then it was Rob Paulsen, the source for Pinky (“Pinky & the Brain”), Yakko (“Animaniacs”) and a myriad of others. Recently Paulsen beat cancer, which threatened his career, and he tells the story in the new book … “Voice Lessons.”

Film News: Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema to Close 9th Season with Hong Kong Week & Honors

2019 APUC Closing Week

CHICAGO – Season Nine of Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema (APUC) goes out with a celebratory bang as Hong Kong Week begins on Saturday, October 5th, 2019, and culminates with a Lifetime Achievement Award event for actor Kenneth Tsang Kong on Thursday, October 10th.

Exclusive Photo: Author Salman Rushdie for New Book ‘Quichotte’

CHICAGO – It’s a major event when an author the magnitude of Salman Rushdie releases a new novel, and “Quichotte” is now on the shelves. The story was inspired by Don Quixote, and set in current times. Joe Arce took an Exclusive Photo of Rushdie at an event sponsored by Anderson’s Bookshop at North Central College in Naperville (Illinois).

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