September 2023

Vodcast: Kicking the Seat Presents the Cop Drama 'Serpico' (1973)

Serpico, KICKING THE SEAT

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on Ian Simmons’ Vodcast, KICKING THE SEAT, talking the 1973 Cop Drama classic, “Serpico” … it’s 50th Anniversary. Why was this particular anniversary film chosen? Because it was once parodied in MAD MAGAZINE as “Serpicool.”

On-Air Film Review: Campus Romp ‘The Re-Education of Molly Singer’

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on September 28th, 2023, reviewing “The Re-Education of Molly Singer,” a back-to-campus romp. Opening in theaters and through Video-On-Demand September 29th.

Toga! Toga! On-Air Review of ‘The Re-Education of Molly Singer’

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 September 28th, 2023, reviewing “The Re-Education of Molly Singer,” a back-to-campus romp. Opening in theaters and through Video-On-Demand September 29th.

On-Air Film Review: The Mother Also Rises in ‘Flora and Son’

Flora and Son

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on September 29th, 2023, reviewing “Flora and Son,” written/directed by John Carney (ONCE). In select theaters and streaming on Apple TV+ on September 29th.

The Mother Also Rises! On-Air Review of ‘Flora and Son’

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 September 29th, 2023, reviewing “Flora and Son,” written/directed by John Carney (ONCE). In select theaters and streaming on Apple TV+ on September 29th.

Audio Film Review: In ‘The Creator’ the Breeder is the Leader

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com audio film review for “The Creator,” a new science fiction film co-written (with Chris Weitz) and directed by Gareth Edwards, the filmmaker behind the well-received Star Wars film “Rogue One.” In theaters on September 29th.

Take Me to Your Breeder! Audio Review of ‘The Creator’

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

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com audio film review for “The Creator,” a new science fiction film co-written (with Chris Weitz) and directed by Gareth Edwards, the filmmaker behind the well-received Star Wars film “Rogue One.” In theaters on September 29th.

Podtalk: John LaFlamboy, Proprietor of HellsGate Haunted House

HellsGate Haunted House

CHICAGO – It began with a boy and his dream (nightmare?). John LaFlamboy, to be exact, as he took an idea he had in college and made it his life’s work. He owns and operates the HellsGate Haunted House in Lockport (Illinois), which was designed, built and put together by Haunted House experts expressly for the spookiest month of the year. For info on how to purchase tickets, click HellsGate.

On-Air Film Review: ‘Dumb Money’ Has a Bunch of Smart Ass-ets

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on September 21st, 2023, reviewing “Dumb Money,” featuring Paul Dano as Keith Gill, a rogue stock trader. Opening in theaters everywhere September 29th.

Bunch of Smart Ass-ets: On-Air Film Review of ‘Dumb Money’

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 September 21st, 2023, reviewing “Dumb Money,” featuring Paul Dano as Keith Gill, a rogue stock trader. Opening in theaters everywhere September 29th.

Podtalk: Larry & Terry Ziegelman for Short Film ‘Broken Vessels’

CHICAGO – The Glendale (CA) International Film Festival is screening a new short film on September 29th, 2023. The “Z-Twins,” Larry and Terry Ziegelman, collaborated on writing and directing “Broken Vessels” … a story of cancer, chemo and survival for a distressed woman. For info and tickets, click GLENDALE.

Podtalk: REELING2023 Presents ‘Febrero’ on Sep. 27, 2023

CHICAGO – The queer community is everywhere in this spinning world, even Cuba. A new filmmaker, Hansel Porras Garcia, spotlights a story of Cuba in his debut feature film “Febrero” at the Chicago Reeling2023 International LBGTQ+ Film Festival on September 27th, 2023. For details and tickets, click FEBRERO.

Podtalk: Rebecca Fons & Jack C. Newell on 5th ‘Destroy Your Art’

Destroy Your Art 2023

CHICAGO – It’s five times the fun for the fifth time. Filmmaker Jack C. Newell and Rebecca Fons of the Gene Siskel Film Center will conduct their 5th “Destroy Your Art” event. The idea is a filmmaker creates a film, shows it once to the audience, and then destroys it forever. This will take place this year at the historic Music Box Theatre on Tuesday, September 26th, 2023. For more information, including tickets, click DYA.

Exclusive Portraits: Idina Menzel & Sister Cara for ‘Proud Mouse’

CHICAGO – Idina Menzel is an icon of the Great White Way and is appropriately nicknamed “Queen of Broadway.” She and her sister Cara have released their new children’s book “Proud Mouse,” a veiled story of their sisterhood. Photographer Joe Arce of HollywoodChicago.com got Exclusive Portraits of both at a recent book signing.

On-Air Film Review: ‘It Lives Inside’ is a Battle of Assimilation

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on September 21st, 2023, reviewing “It Lives Inside,” a new horror film based on monster mythology from India. In theaters since September 22nd.

Battle of Assimilation! On-Air Review of ‘It Lives Inside’

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 September 21st, 2023, reviewing “It Lives Inside,” a new horror film based on monster mythology from India. In theaters since September 22nd.

APUC17: Afghanistan, Iran & Mongolia Spotlight for Sept. 23, 2023

CHICAGO – Week Three of Season 17 Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema’s (APUC17) will focus on some outside-the-norm Asian countries including Iran, Afghanistan and Mongolia, including in-person appearances. For details and ticket info, click APUC17.

Exclusive Portrait: Mira Sorvino Joins Season 32 ‘Dancing with the Stars’

Mira Sorvino, photo by Joe Arce 2023

CHICAGO – On September 13th, the celebrity participants of the 32nd Season of “Dancing with the Stars” was revealed, and among those taking on the challenge is Mira Sorvino, the Oscar-winning actor and activist. Ms. Sorvino was recently photographed by Joe Arce of HollywoodChicago.com at Chicago’s FAN EXPO in August.

Podtalk: REELING41 Begins on Sept. 21, 2023, with Opening Night Film ‘The Mattachine Family’

CHICAGO – The 41st edition of the REELING International LBGTQ+ Film Festival kicks off on September 21st, 2023, and runs through October 7th. The Opening Night film is “The Mattachine Family” at Chicago’s Music Box Theatre. For info/tickets click REELING41.

On-Air Film Review: ‘The Inventor’ is Leonardo’s Da Vinci Vision

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on September 14th, 2023, reviewing “The Inventor,” an animated epic on the final days of inventor and artist Leonardo Da Vinci. In theaters on September 15th.

Leonardo’s Da Vinci Vision! On-Air Review of ‘The Inventor’

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 September 14th, 2023, reviewing “The Inventor,” an animated epic on the final days of inventor and artist Leonardo Da Vinci. In theaters on September 15th.

Film News: Asian Pop-Up Cinema SEASON 17 Presents Hong Kong Weekend, Sep. 16-17, 2023

APUC Hong Kong 2023

CHICAGO – It’s Hong Kong Weekend for Season 17 Asian Pop-Up Cinema (APUC) on September 16th and 17th, 2023, and representing the films there will be actor and filmmaker appearances. APUC will honor three guests with a Pinnacle Career Achievement Award and two Bright Star Awards for up and coming actors.

Podtalk: Closing Night of CUFF 30 is World Premiere Documentary ‘For Kicks’ on Sep. 17, 2023

For Kicks

CHICAGO – The 30th edition of the Chicago Underground Film Festival concludes their short run on Sunday, September 17th (8:30p), with the World Premiere of the documentary “For Kicks,” directed by veteran filmmaker Sean Patrick Fahey. For details and ticket info, click FOR KICKS.

Film Review: Hercule Poirot Will Go ‘A Haunting in Venice’

CHICAGO – While Kenneth Branagh still isn’t a favorite Hercule Poirot, I was as surprised as anyone to find that this third go around as the Belgian detective was my favorite. As the title implies, there are jump scares a-plenty as Poirot tries to get his little gray cells around the strange goings-on in a spooky house, and solve the mystery.

Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot Will Go ‘A Haunting in Venice’

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

CHICAGO – While Kenneth Branagh still isn’t a favorite Hercule Poirot, I was as surprised as anyone to find that this third go around as the Belgian detective was my favorite. As the title implies, there are jump scares a-plenty as Poirot tries to get his little gray cells around the strange goings-on in a spooky house, and solve the mystery.

Theater Review: City Lit’s Fascinating ‘The Innocence of Seduction’ Now Thru Oct. 8, 2023


Innocence of Seduction, The

CHICAGO – Society, or at least certain elements of society, are always looking for scapegoats to hide the sins of themselves and authority. In the so-called “great America” of the 1950s, the scapegoat target was comic books … specifically through a sociological study called “The Seduction of the Innocent.” City Lit Theater Company, in part two of a trilogy on comic culture by Mark Pracht, presents “The Innocence of Seduction … now through October 8th, 2023. For details and tickets, click COMIC BOOK.

Podtalk: Elisa Levine on Doc 'Sweetheart Deal,' screening at CUFF30 on Sep. 15 & 17, 2023

Sweetheart Deal at CUFF30

CHICAGO – The 30th edition of the Chicago Underground Film Festival continues with the documentary “Sweetheart Deal,” co-directed by Elisa Levine and Gabriel Miller, which will screen on Friday, September 15th (9pm) and Sunday, September 17th (3pm) at Harper Theatre in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. For details and ticket info, click DEAL.

Film News: Chicago Underground Film Fest, Sep. 13-17, 2023

CHICAGO – The longest running underground film festival in the world kicks off its 30th Edition on Wednesday, September 13th, 2023. The Chicago Underground Film Festival opens with “Hello Dankness” at the Gene Siskel Film Center. For tickets and info, click CUFF30.

Podtalk: New Artistic Director Sarah Slight of Chicago’s Raven Theatre on the 41st Season

Sarah Slight Raven Theatre 2023

CHICAGO – On July 1st, 2023, Sarah Slight was named Artistic Director of the Raven Theatre, beginning with the 41st Season, which begins October 5th with Lucille Fletcher’s from-Broadway thriller “Night Watch.” In 2024, the season will continue with two original commissioned stage plays, Paul Michael Thomson’s ‘brother sister cyborg space’ in February and the final installment of the Grand Boulevard Trilogy, “The Prodigal Daughter,” by Joshua Allen. For all information and tickets, click RAVEN.

On-Air Film Review: ‘Sitting in Bars with Cake’ is a Slice of Life

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on September 7th, 2023, reviewing “Sitting in Bars with Cake,” an adaptation of a cookbook memoir by Audrey Shulman. In theaters on September 8th.

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  • Prodigal Daughter, The

    CHICAGO – One of the open secrets of Chicago is its horrible racist past, which remains like an echo. Playwright Joshua Allen has been exploring this theme in his Grand Boulevard Trilogy – the last chapter talking place during the infamous 1919 race riots – in Raven Theatre’s “The Prodigal Daughter.” For tickets and info, click TPD.

  • Michael Shannon and Travis A. Knight, Red Orchid's TURRET

    CHICAGO – When in the presence of a powerful acting force like Michael Shannon, the depth of performance is emotional and passionately essential. He co-leads with Travis A. Knight in Red Orchid Theatre’s World Premiere of Levi Holloway’s “Turret,” just extended to June 22nd at the Chopin Theatre.

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