January 2022

Podtalk: In-Person ‘Best of the Midwest’ Awards on Feb. 1, 2022

CHICAGO – Let’s kick off the film year by getting together! Using the safest protocols for gatherings, the Midwest Film Festival presents the Best of Midwest Awards on February 1st, 2022, and it will be an in-person event for the first time in three years. To get tickets, click BEST OF THE MIDWEST.

Film News: ‘Nanny’ is Top U.S. Film at 2022 Sundance Film Festival

CHICAGO – The 2022 Sundance Film Festival announced their Grand Jury Prizes on January 28th, and the top films were “Nanny” (U.S. Dramatic), “The Exiles” (U.S. Documentary), “Utama” (World Cinema Dramatic) and “All That Breathes” (World Cinema Documentary).

On-Air Film Review: Bard Burner for ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’

Tragedy of Macbeth, The

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 27th, 2022, reviewing the the adaptation of “The Tragedy of Macbeth” by Joel Coen, in select theaters now and streaming on Apple TV Plus.

Bard Burner! On-Air Review of ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 27th, 2022, reviewing the the adaptation of “The Tragedy of Macbeth” by Joel Coen, in select theaters now and streaming on Apple TV Plus.

Film News: 2022 Sundance Film Festival in the Home Stretch

CHICAGO – The 2022 Sundance Film Festival is on Day Nine, and will be announcing their top film honorees on January 28th. The festival is wrapping up as virtual/online, meaning anyone/anywhere with a ticket or a pass (link) can indulge in the film offerings and events throughout the festival, which runs until January 30th.

Podtalk: Actor Wallace Shawn Celebrates ‘Rifkin’s Festival’

CHICAGO – The distinctive voice and presence of Wallace Shawn has been in the show business firmament for over 40 years. From his legacy film “My Dinner with Andre” through cultural icon in “The Princess Bride” to “Young Sheldon,” Wally Shawn has endured and prospered. He stars as the title character in “Rifkin’s Festival, opening January 28th, 2022.

Film News: 2022 Sundance Film Festival Fills the Cinema Bill

CHICAGO – The 2022 Sundance Film Festival heads into Day Seven, and offers online events as well as films (see below). Like last year, the festival is virtual/online, meaning anyone/anywhere with a ticket or a pass (link) can indulge in the film offerings and events throughout the festival, which runs until January 30th.

Film News: 2022 Sundance Film Festival & Living is Easy?

CHICAGO – The 2022 Sundance Film Festival heads into Day Five after the Opening Weekend Offerings reflecting Life in Our Times. Like last year, the festival is virtual and online, meaning anyone/anywhere with a ticket or a pass (link) can indulge in the film offerings throughout the festival, which runs until January 30th.

On-Air Film Review: M is for the Many in ‘Parallel Mothers’

Parallel Mothers

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Dan Baker on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 20th, 2022, reviewing the 22nd film of writer/director Pedro Almodóvar, “Parallel Mothers,” in select theaters now.

M is for the Many! On-Air Review of ‘Parallel Mothers’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.5/5.0
Rating: 4.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Dan Baker on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 20th, 2022, reviewing the 22nd film of writer/director Pedro Almodóvar, “Parallel Mothers,” in select theaters now.

Film News: 2022 Sundance Film Festival Starts its Engines

CHICAGO – The 2022 Sundance Film Festival heads into Day Three after Opening Night and a full slate of films for Day Two. Like last year, the festival is virtual and online, meaning anyone/anywhere with a ticket or a pass (link) can indulge in the film offerings throughout the festival, which runs until January 30th.

On-Air Film Review: Storm Warning in ‘Munich – The Edge of War’

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Dan Baker on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 20th, 2022, reviewing a fictional film set in a real historic event, “Munich – The Edge of War,” streaming on Netflix beginning on January 21st.

Storm Warning! On-Air Review of ‘Munich – The Edge of War’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Dan Baker on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 20th, 2022, reviewing a fictional film set in a real historic event, “Munich – The Edge of War,” streaming on Netflix beginning on January 21st.

Via Zoom: Kyle Prater is Chasing Greatness in ‘Samples of Life’

CHICAGO – As is often the case, an Act Two in life comes early for the elite athlete. In the case of ex-Pro Footballer Kyle Prater, his Act Two came in the form of Chasing Greatness Productions, a filmmaking and music company. His latest short film is “Samples of Life,” a meditation on creating during the pandemic.

Film News: Tickets Available for Virtual 2022 Sundance Film Festival, January 20-30

CHICAGO – As was announced earlier in the month, the 2022 Sundance Film Festival morphed from a hybrid (online and in person) to a strictly virtual festival beginning January 20th through the 30th. For all information, including tickets and ticket packages, click SUNDANCE 2022.

On-Air Film Review: A Ghostface in the Crowd in ‘Scream’

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 13th, 2022, reviewing the fifth film in the franchise series, a self described “requel” of “Scream,” in theaters on January 14th.

A Ghostface in the Crowd! On-Air Review of ‘Scream’

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

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 13th, 2022, reviewing the fifth film in the franchise series, a self described “requel” of “Scream,” in theaters on January 14th.

On-Air Film Review: Internet Beauty & the Cyber-Beast in ‘Belle’

Belle

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 13th, 2022, reviewing a new animated film from Japan, a version of “Beauty & the Beast” entitled “Belle,” in theaters on January 14th.

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Internet Beauty & the Cyber-Beast! On-Air Review of ‘Belle’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.5/5.0
Rating: 4.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 13th, 2022, reviewing a new animated film from Japan, a version of “Beauty & the Beast” entitled “Belle,” in theaters on January 14th.

Via Zoom: The World According to Performer Natalja Aicardi

CHICAGO – To discover a truly unique interpreter of cabaret is rare and exciting. Natalja Aicardi is a Chicago singer and performance artist, by way of her native Italy. Her multi disciplinary practice of music, movement, singing and energy practice is adds to a mesmerizing performance base, intimate and inviting.

Feature: Top 10 Celebrity Portraits of 2021, by Photographer Joe Arce

CHICAGO – In a Covid-free world no doubt this list would be a TOP 20 or 25 … in non-pandemic times, I photographed approximately 150 celebrities per year. In 2020, there were only two, before the global pandemic basically put my career – like that of so many others – into a medically induced coma.

In Memoriam: Flashback Interview and Exclusive Photo of Bob Saget

Bob Saget, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – There are a couple directions to the long career of Bob Saget, who passed away unexpectedly at age 65 on January 9th, 2022. The first of course was his role as Danny Tanner, the Dad he portrayed in the 1980s sitcom “Full House” and later in the Netflix revival “Fuller House.” The second is his stand-up comedy, whose reputation for filthy jokes had no boundaries.

Film Feature: HollywoodChicago.com Remembers Sidney Poitier

CHICAGO – With the passing of actor Sidney Poitier at the age of 94 on January 6th, 2022, another lion of the cinema – who represented succinctly an era of the movies – has left the mortal coil. HollywoodChicago.com presents the following appreciation through three film essays in retrospect by Patrick McDonald, Spike Walters and Jon Lennon Espino.

On-Air Film Review: Nothing But a Sandwich for ‘A Hero’

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 6th, 2022, reviewing a new film from Iranian director Asghar Farhadi “A Hero,” in theaters on January 7th and Amazon Prime Video on January 21st.

Nothing but a Sandwich! On-Air Review of ‘A Hero’

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 6th, 2022, reviewing a new film from Iranian director Asghar Farhadi “A Hero,” in theaters on January 7th and Amazon Prime Video on January 21st.

On-Air Film Review: Benefit for Bennifer in ‘The Tender Bar’

Tender Bar, The

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 6th, 2022, reviewing the latest from Ben Affleck, directed by George Clooney. “The Tender Bar” is streaming on Amazon Prime Video starting January 7th.

Benefit for Bennifer! On-Air Review of ‘The Tender Bar’

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

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on January 6th, 2022, reviewing the latest from Ben Affleck, directed by George Clooney. “The Tender Bar” is streaming on Amazon Prime Video starting January 7th.

Film Review: Ass Kicker of the Wrong Kind is Downfall of ‘The 355’

CHICAGO – There’s something to be said for a well done ass kicker in January that provides an entertaining distraction from the ice and snow outside. “The 355” is not it, offering a typical quick cutting action thriller that plods along in the most formulaic and least exciting manner possible. There’s nothing in this movie that hasn’t been done to death already.

Ass Kicker of the Wrong Kind is Downfall of ‘The 355’

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

CHICAGO – There’s something to be said for a well done ass kicker in January that provides an entertaining distraction from the ice and snow outside. “The 355” is not it, offering a typical quick cutting action thriller that plods along in the most formulaic and least exciting manner possible. There’s nothing in this movie that hasn’t been done to death already.

Film News: Iconic Filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich Dies at 82

CHICAGO – The work of filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich – who passed away on January 6th, 2022, at age 82 – was inspired by the cinematic language of American movies, which he interpreted through his many classic films. His most fertile and imaginative period were three movies from 1971 through 1973, which began with his masterpiece, “The Last Picture Show.”

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Yellowstone, Season 5

    CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com audio streaming series review for “Yellowstone,” the popular Western series set in modern Montana … in Season 5. Available to stream on the Paramount Network and through Video On Demand beginning November 13th.

  • Paranormal Activity: The Ultimate Chills Collection

    CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on Eddie Volkman Show with Hannah B on Star 96.7 WSSR-FM (Joliet, IL) reviewing the new Paramount Pictures Blu-Ray Collection of “Paranormal Activity: The Ultimate Chills Collection,” containing all seven films in the series plus a documentary.

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