Jack Dylan Grazer

‘Luca’ Uses Queer-Bait Hoping to Reel in a Hit, Ends Up Snagged

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

CHICAGO – Even as an adult, I am still in awe of how effective animated features are as narrative vehicles. As a kid, it was the thing I would consume the most, gorging myself into a stupor. The cartoons didn’t even have to follow any set story structure, especially when some of my favorites included a cowardly dog, a cow and chicken as siblings, and even an underwater sponge that is friends with an aquatic squirrel.

"Chapter 2" Lacks crucial "IT" factor

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

CHICAGO – “It Chapter 2” has some of the same problems as its source material, and the previous adaptation of the Stephen King spine-tingler. It has a great beginning, but the ensuing story never tops or reaches the same level as that first scene. So in Chapter 2’s slog on to an ultimately unsatisfying ending, we are witnessing a yarn literally unraveling before our very eyes.

HollywoodChicago.com ESP, En Español: 'Shazam!' y 'The Best of Enemies'

CHICAGO – Cada semana, HollywoodChicago.com le traerá las criticas de las películas que hemos visto y que están saliendo esa semana, pero en español. HollywoodChicago.com ESP no sólo representa HollywoodChicago.com Espanol, sino también Esta Semana en Peliculas. Esta semana, nos sobrecargamos y canalizamos a nuestro héroe interior con “Shazam!”, y luego tomamos un viaje al pasado con una historia real que tiene un mensaje dañino con “The Best of Enemies”.

‘Shazam!’ is a Paint by Numbers Superhero Movie

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

CHICAGO – The former Captain Marvel (story below) is now “Shazam!,” and has his own film in the DC Comics universe. Zachary Levi portrays the title character, now with a new origin to go along with his new name. Speaking of that, no new ground is broken in this pretty standard foster-kid-makes-good hero epic.

Effective Scare Factor & Teenage Traumas Define ‘IT’

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

CHICAGO – “IT” is the kind of film that relies on jump-scares and ghastly images a bit too much, but behind it all is a quirky story – based on a Stephen King novel – about that time in childhood where becoming a teenager and finding a way within the change is adventurous and unsettling.

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  • Gospel

    CHICAGO – The roots of freedom and redemption for Black Americans in their history in this country is within the Black church and its joyful noise. PBS and Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr. (“Finding Your Roots”) presents a special overview for Black History Month 2024 of the influential music not only in the Black culture but all popular music culture in the new docuseries entitled “Gospel”

  • In Quietness Red Orchid Theatre

    CHICAGO – Marriage is a complex dynamic, and the subtle but effective “In Quietness,” currently at Chicago’s Red Orchid Theatre through March 10th, jumps the nuptial institution through some unusual hoops in exploration of religion, fidelity and promises made/broken. For information and tickets, click IN QUIETNESS.

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