Al Madrigal

Film Review: ‘Night School’ Can’t Get to a Passing Grade

CHICAGO – “Night School” is the latest undistinguished product to come off the Kevin Hart assembly line. If you’re a fan of Hart’s motormouthed and hyperactive small time schtick, you’ll find that this will just barely passed the test. But if you’re not, this movie won’t change anyone’s mind.

Interview, Audio: Cindy Caponera, TV Writer for ‘I’m Dying Up Here’

CHICAGO – One of the great new premium channel TV series, which piggybacked on the “Twin Peaks” return on the Showtime Network, is “I’m Dying Up Here.” Set in the 1970s, it tells the stories of fictional stand up comedians in Los Angeles, and one of the Consulting Producers and series writers is Cindy Caponera.

Slideshow: Bill Maher, Bob Newhart Perform at the 2013 ‘Just for Laughs Chicago’

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Bill Maher headlines ‘Just for Laugh Chicago’ at The Chicago Theatre.

CHICAGO – Two icons of comedy, one contemporary and one classic, took the stage during last month’s “Just for Laughs Chicago” festival – sponsored by the TBS Network – and brought down their respective houses. Political commentator Bill Maher and comic legend Bob Newhart both performed downtown at The Chicago Theatre.

TV Review: Neurotic, Annoying Characters Sink ‘Free Agents’

Free Agents

CHICAGO – Sitcoms need likable characters. We have to want to spend time with people to laugh at their insights or behavior (a lesson that the writers of “Entourage” forgot somewhere along the way) and comedies with people that are more annoying than humorous never last. Look no further than tonight’s debut of the awful “Free Agents,” a new NBC comedy with excellent actors given nothing entertaining to do.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Chicago Party Aunt

    CHICAGO – The funny meter of Netflix went off the scale last week, as the animated series “Chicago Party Aunt” made its debut on September 17th. What began as a Twitter account by comic actor Chris Witaske (who also provides his voice talent) has morphed into the cartoon adventures of Aunt Diane Dumbowski, her nephew Daniel, and an array of familiar Chicago-isms and characters.

  • Factory Theater, The

    CHICAGO – It’s time again for live theater in Chicago, and The Factory Theater – in anticipation of their 2021-22 Season – is launching “Quiet Please! It’s A Silent Auction,” an online silent auction through the month of August (the 1st-31st). An amazing array of goods and services are available for bidding, and can be accessed by clicking here.

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