October 2022

Podtalk: Sacha Jenkins Directs ‘Louis Armstrong’s Black & Blues’

CHICAGO – One of the most prominent Americans musicians in the 20th Century, if not one of the greatest, was Louis Armstrong. The memorable black trumpeter, vocalist and outsized personality found success in the Jim Crow era, and how he did it is spotlighted in Sacha Jenkin’s documentary “Louis Armstrong’s Black & Blues,” now streaming on Apple TV+.

Film News: Asian Pop-Up Cinema In-Person Event for Hong Kong Film ‘Deliverance,’ Oct. 29, 2022

Summer Chan, APUC S15 2022

CHICAGO – Season 15 of the Asian Pop-Up Cinema (APUC) is wrapping up its Fall Edition with Hong Kong Week, beginning with an exciting in-person event on Saturday, October 29th, 2022 (5pm). The well-received “Deliverance” will be screened at the AMC New City Theatre in the city, featuring actress Summer Chan, who will also be at the theater in person to receive APUC’s BRIGHT STAR AWARD.

On-Air Film Review: Lift Every Voice and Sing for ‘Till’

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Ben Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on October 27th, 2022, reviewing “Till,” a narrative re-telling of the Emmett Till civil rights incident from 1955, in wide release beginning October 28th.

Lift Every Voice and Sing! On-Air Film Review of ‘Till'

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 Ben Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on October 27th, 2022, reviewing “Till,” a narrative re-telling of the Emmett Till civil rights incident from 1955, in wide release beginning October 28th.

Via Zoom: Soprano Group Tres Belle to Perform at Davenports in Chicago, Oct. 29, 2022

Tres Belle

CHICAGO – In this spooky season of Halloween, why not get “Bewitched” by three women Sopranos, under the group name Tres Belle. Marisa Buchheit, Kimberly Jones and Kirsten Leslie will perform an eclectic set of opera, show tunes, the Great American Songbook and even pop at their appropriately entitled show “Bewitched: A Spooky Night of Song with Tres Belle.” Click BEWITCHED for details and tickets.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘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.

Slideshow: Galaxy of Rising Stars on Red Carpet at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

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Anna Diop on the Red Carpet for ‘Nanny.’

CHICAGO – The spotlight that is the 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) shines on the future big names in the movies, and this years festival was no exception.

Slideshow: ‘No Ordinary Campaign’ on Red Carpet at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest, Oct. 21, 2022

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Brian Wallach and Sandra Abrevaya for ‘No Ordinary Campaign.’

CHICAGO – One of the most passionate documentaries at the 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) was “No Ordinary Campaign.” The story of Brian Wallach and wife Sandra Abrevaya, who decided to use their political acumen to make change when Brian was diagnosed with ALS, was to bring the fight to Washington.

Via Zoom: Jewell Wilson Bridges as Orson Welles in ‘Voodoo MacBeth’

CHICAGO – One of the greatest challenges of any actor is the portrayal of a person in history that is familiar to most of the culture. Orson Welles is such a man, and Jewell Wilson Bridges took on his persona in the new film “Voodoo MacBeth.” He plays Welles as the “Boy Genius” stage director, age 21 in 1936.

Red Carpet: Director Sarah Polley at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

CHICAGO – Writer/Director Sarah Polley is back with her new film “Women Talking,” and attended a screening at the 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) on October 20th, 2022. After making her name as a in-demand actor, Polley has since directed films like “Away From Her” and “Stories We Tell.”

Red Carpet: Reverend Al Sharpton at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

Al Sharpton, photo by Joe Arce 2022

CHICAGO – The Reverend Al Sharpton has been a “Loudmouth” … as the new documentary on his life and work is called … virtually all his life. His outspoken activism began a year after Dr. King was killed, when Sharpton became Youth Director of Operation Breadbasket at age 15, and continues to today, especially around the killing of George Floyd. Rev. Al Sharpton appeared on the Red Carpet at the 58th Chicago International Film Festival.

Slideshow: Kathryn Hahn of ‘Glass Onion’ on Red Carpet at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

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Kathryn Hahn on the 58th CIFF Red Carpet for ‘Glass Onion.’

CHICAGO – The front of Chicago’s historic Music Box Theatre was abuzz with celebrity stardom as Kathryn Hahn appeared on behalf of “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” at the 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) on October 18th, 2022. Patrick McDonald and photographer Joe Arce were there.

Red Carpet: Mary McCartney at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

CHICAGO – The final studio album from The Beatles was entitled “Abbey Road,” which was named after the studio they recorded their run of now-iconic musical history. That history and more about the studio is highlighted in the new documentary “If These Walls Could Sing.” The doc is directed by Mary McCartney, daughter of Paul.

The Gold Hugo: ‘Godland’ at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Festival

CHICAGO – The 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) announced its award winners on October 21st, 2022, and the recipient of The Gold Hugo in the International Feature Film Competition – the festival’s top honor – is Hiynu Pålmason’s ‘Godland”, a multi-layered critique of colonialist destruction.

On-Air Film Review: Pack Your Bags for ‘Ticket to Paradise’

Ticket to Paradise

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Dan Baker on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on October 20th, 2022, reviewing “Ticket to Paradise” an old fashion movie star movie featuring George Clooney and Julia Roberts, opening in theaters beginning October 21st..

Pack Your Bags! On-Air Film Review of ‘Ticket to Paradise’

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 Dan Baker on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on October 20th, 2022, reviewing “Ticket to Paradise” an old fashion movie star movie featuring George Clooney and Julia Roberts, opening in theaters beginning October 21st..

Film Review: Dwayne Johnson Like a Rock as Star of ‘Black Adam’

Black Adam

CHICAGO – Once again Dwayne Johnson finds himself in a vehicle unworthy of his considerable charms and talents. Johnson stars as “Black Adam,” a demigod from a mythical middle eastern country who was given power from a counsel of wizards to protect his homeland from injustice. He’s woken from a 5000 year sleep to protect the country again from foreign interlopers...

Dwayne Johnson Like a Rock as Star of ‘Black Adam’

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

CHICAGO – Once again Dwayne Johnson finds himself in a vehicle unworthy of his considerable charms and talents. Johnson stars as “Black Adam,” a demigod from a mythical middle eastern country who was given power from a counsel of wizards to protect his homeland from injustice. He’s woken from a 5000 year sleep to protect the country again from foreign interlopers.

Interview: ‘No Ordinary Campaign’ at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

CHICAGO – When Sandra Abrevaya met her future husband Brian Wallach while on the staff of Barack Obama’s 2008 campaign, their future seemed exceedingly bright. But then Brian was was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease), and his prognosis was dim. It was time for the couple to use their knowledge to make change.

On-Air Film Review: Brothers Are Two of a Kind in ‘Raymond & Ray’

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on October 13th, 2022, reviewing “Raymond & Ray,” a story of brothers written and directed by Rodrigo Garcia, currently in select theaters and streaming on Apple TV+ beginning October 21st..

Two of a Kind! On-Air Film Review of ‘Raymond & Ray’

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 October 13th, 2022, reviewing “Raymond & Ray,” a story of brothers written and directed by Rodrigo Garcia, currently in select theaters and streaming on Apple TV+ beginning October 21st.

Film Preview: Upcoming Final Weekend at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

58th CIFF Film Preview

CHICAGO – The 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) is wrapping up on Sunday, October 23rd, but there is still a full weekend of events, including more Red Carpets, the Award Winners and the Best of the Fest screenings. For a sample of what to expect, Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com previews previews some upcoming films of the 58th CIFF.

Podtalk: Chinonye Chukwu & Danielle Deadwyler for ‘Till’

CHICAGO – The film “Till” is the story of Emmett Till, a black Chicago boy who was murdered in 1955 while visiting relatives in the American South. Instead of hiding the killing, Till’s mother Mamie (Danielle Deadwyler) chose to show the world the result of her son’s hate crime murder. Chinonye Chukwu directed the film.

Red Carpet: Director Mo McRae at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

Mo McRae, photo by Joe Arce 2022

CHICAGO – Actor and director Mo McRae brought his debut feature film, “A Lot of Nothing” to the 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) on October 15th, 2022, and took a walk down the Red Carpet.

Red Carpet: Darren Aronofsky's 'The Whale' at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

CHICAGO – One of the buzziest films of the Awards season is “The Whale,” featuring an high-level performance by Brendan Fraser and directed by Darren Aronofsky (“Requiem for a Dream,” “The Wrestler”). The 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFFl had “The Whale” as a showcase, and Aronofsky walked the Red Carpet.

Podtalk: Film Fest Founder Michael Kutza to Sign His New Book ‘Starstruck’ on Oct. 19, 2022

CHICAGO – Chicago International Film Festival Founder Michael Kutza will sign his new book – “Starstruck: How I Magically Transformed Chicago into Hollywood for More than 50 Years” – during the current Fest, at Chicago’s AMC River East lobby from 6-9pm on October 19th, 2022.

Red Carpet: Mayor Lori Lightfoot at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

CHICAGO – The honoring of an institution in the City of Chicago via the documentary “Art and Pep” – the owners of the iconic Sidetrack gay bar in Chicago’s “Boystown” LGBTQ+ neighborhood – was supported by Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who walked the Red Carpet at the 58th Chicago International Film Festival on October 14th.

Preview: Alex Thompson’s ‘Rounding’ at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest. Oct. 15 & 16, 2022

Rounding, 58th CIFF 2022

CHICAGO – Filmmaker Alex Thompson makes a triumphant return to the Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) with his second feature, “Rounding,” screening on October 15th & 16th. CLICK ALEX T for info/tickets.

Red Carpet: ‘Art and Pep’ Doc at 58th Chicago Intl. Film Fest

CHICAGO – A legacy in Chicago LGBTQ+ history took center stage at the 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) on October 13th. “Art and Pep” is a documentary about life partners Art Johnson and Pepe Peña, the proprietors of Sidetrack, the largest gay bar in the Midwest. There will be one more screening on October 16th, click ART/PEP for location/tickets.

Slideshow: Opening Night at 58th Chicago International Film Festival, Oct. 12, 2022

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Steve James, director of ‘A Compassionate Spy.’

CHICAGO – Opening Night was a sensation for the 58th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF). Besides the Opening Night Red Carpet for the film “A Compassionate Spy,” a Block Party took place on the streets in front of Chicago’s historic Music Box Theatre, in a memorable beginning to a Fest that runs through October 23rd.

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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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