Week of   « Prev | Next »

10 articles


Film Review: Son Can’t Rise Beyond His Fate in Emotional ‘Mommy’

5 hours ago

Chicago – One of the odd unexplainable quirks of human existence is the shaping, variations and thoughts of our inner being. The physicality in the structure of the grey matter of the brain, with the slightest imperfection, can make the difference in a lifetime of behavior and perspective. Sometimes it can work out, and sometimes different consequences are created or destroyed, like the story of Diane Després in “Mommy.”

Rating: 4.0/5.0

This is an amazing story, based on a true incident, involving the Canadian mental health system. Diane “Die” Després raised a mentally maladjusted son, who was institutionalized with severe hyperactivity disorder, until his ejection from the system forced her to make a decision. At 15, a mother and child reunion takes place, a last ditch attempt to socialize her difficult boy. The story that writer/director Xavier Dolan fashions is about the value of fellow travelers and the freedom of looking at things differently. »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


Film Review: Efficient Submarine Adventure 'Black Sea' Offers Classic Thrills

6 hours ago

Chicago - Having explored the farthest fields of space in films like “Gravity” and “Interstellar,” we may have forgotten the danger that awaits down below. “Black Sea” is a lean, often thrilling submarine tale that takes viewers on a journey of timeless terror and sacrificial pursuits.

Rating: 3.5/5.0

Black Sea” is a working class treasure hunt, set in the world of blue collar men who have devoted their lives to working in submarines, but aren’t appreciated by their fat cat employees. A recently fired sub captain named Robinson (Jude Law) makes a deal with his former employer to help the company retrieve a sub with Nazi gold inside of it. On board are men like Ben Mendelsohn’s out-of-control Fraser, corporate stooge Daniels (Scoot McNairy), and young first-timer Tobin (Bobby Schofield).

The cause for Jude Law to earn some respect continues, as he works with diverse characters without a golden showboating, »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


2015 Sundance Diary: ‘Don Verdean,’ ‘The Mask You Live In’ & ‘Me & Earl & The Dying Girl’

15 hours ago

Park City, Utah – HollywoodChicago.com’s coverage of the 2015 Sundance Film Festival is far from over. This is the latest batch of reviews of movies that I’ve seen there. One film was a triumph while the other two are titles that I wouldn’t want to be stuck talking to at a party.

Don Verdean

Don Verdean

Image credit: Sundance Institute

Running equal portions of dry goofiness and finite inspired storytelling, Jared Hess’ “Don Verdean” is a rewarding comedy about Biblical archaeology that’s necessary for times in which religious institutions crave sensationalism to get their good word across. For those who read “The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven” before its child author said he made it all up, or those who saw “Heaven Is For Real” as a type of precursor to their own death’s aftermath, this movie is for them. It’s a brilliant take »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 15 Pairs of Guaranteed Anytime Passes to ‘The Loft’ With Karl Urban

29 January 2015 8:28 PM, PST

Chicago – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film, we have 15 pairs of guaranteed anytime movie tickets up for grabs to the new thriller “The Loft” starring Karl Urban and James Marsden! Pick your own theatre and time throughout Chicagoland!

The Loft,” which opens on Jan. 30, 2015 and is rated “R,” also stars Isabel Lucas, Wentworth Miller, Eric Stonestreet, Matthias Schoenaerts, Rachael Taylor, Rhona Mitra, Valerie Cruz and Kali Rocha from director Erik Van Looy and writers Bart De Pauw and Wesley Strick. Note: You must be 17+ to win these “R”-rated tickets.

These guaranteed anytime passes are valid at any of Cinemark’s eight Chicago and Chicagoland theaters during the film’s theatrical run. These passes will be snail mailed to our winners.

To win your free “The Loft” passes courtesy of HollywoodChicago.com, just get interactive with our social media widget below. That’s it! The more social actions you complete, »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


Film Review: Story Choices Aside, Heart Matters in ‘Black or White’

29 January 2015 6:18 PM, PST

Chicago – As race issues continue in the news, in the wake of Ferguson and “I Can’t Breathe,” the movies exhibit an extraordinary piece of timing with the new film “Black or White.” Oscar winners Kevin Costner and Octavia Spencer participate in a story of family and healing.

Rating: 3.0/5.0

The issue in the film involves “Black or White,” but mostly in the context of what the opposing families want for a biracial girl suddenly being raised by her white grandfather (Costner). Written and directed by Mike Binder (“The Upside of Anger”). the film explores themes of socio/economic separation as much as opposing racial views, and mostly it shows that both sides care ultimately for the little girl. Kevin Costner also steps outside his usual character mode, playing the grandfather as a mourning and boozy figure of tragedy, and a morally vague arbiter of the racial issues that have been thrust upon him. »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


Interview: Director Kevin Macdonald Gets Under His ‘Black Sea’

29 January 2015 5:58 PM, PST

Chicago – The old fashioned paranoid thriller lives, with the release of ‘Black Sea,’ a submarine movie that combines elements of the silent running of those underwater tin cans with the motivation of finding treasure – in this case Nazi gold – that has been buried where it sunk 70 years ago. The director of this film, Kevin Macdonald, creates a nail biting tension in the will-they-or-won’t-they survival mode of the British and Russian members of the submarine’s crew, led by Captain Robinson (Jude Law).

The Scotland-born Macdonald began his career as a notable documentary maker, winning an Oscar for his documentary “One Day in September” (1999), about the raid by Palestinian terrorists of the 1972 Munich Olympics. But he has also spun some Oscar gold in the narrative category, as Forest Whitaker won Best Actor for the Macdonald directed “The Last King of Scotland.” He continued to produce both features (“State of Play, »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


Theater Review: Brown Paper Box Co. Stages Pointed ‘Spike Heels’

29 January 2015 12:40 PM, PST

Chicago – If you can remember the 1990s outside of childhood, you are in the glow of middle age, so congratulations. The Brown Paper Box Co. theater ensemble takes us back to those thrilling days of yesteryear with “Spike Heels,” a relationship comedy centering on the co-mingling antics of two couples, with a slight nod toward George Bernard Shaw and the play “Pygmalion” (or its musical counterpart, “My Fair Lady”).

Play Rating: 3.5/5.0

The script of the play is a bit slight and histrionic, but the performances rescue those tendencies, especially the whirling dervish in the center of the action. The character of Georgie is an indecisive-yet-strong character, and is portrayed with exceptional presence and depth by the rising Chicago theater star Jillian Weingart. Flitting from man-to-man, and consequence-to-consequence, Weingart as Georgie becomes the glue which holds the flimsy scenario together.

Edward (Charles Azkenaizer) Encounters Georgie (Jillian Weingart) in ‘Spike Heels’

Photo »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


Interview: Kevin Costner, Anthony Mackie & Director Mike Binder Ponder ‘Black or White’

28 January 2015 10:32 AM, PST

Chicago – Kevin Costner has come to represent a particular brand of Americana, for his roles in films like “Field of Dreams,” “Dances with Wolves” “JFK” and recently as Pa Kent in “Man of Steel.” His latest film is “Black or White.”

Black or White” is written and directed by Mike Binder, who Costner has previously collaborated with in “The Upside of Anger.” It focuses on Eliot Anderson (Costner), who loses his wife in a car accident as the film begins. He is left to raise their granddaughter Eloise (Jillian Estell), after he and his wife had adopted her when their daughter died in childbirth. Eliot’s daughter had hid the pregnancy, and the father was an African American man. The other side of Eloise’s family, led by matriarch Rowena (Octavia Spencer), challenges Eliot for custody of Eloise, and retains Rowena’s high powered lawyer brother Jeremiah (Anthony Mackie) to process the trial. »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 75 Pairs of Passes to ‘Black Sea’ With Jude Law

27 January 2015 5:48 PM, PST

Chicago – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film, we have 75 pairs of advance-screening movie passes up for grabs to the new thriller “Black Sea” starring Jude Law from Oscar-winning director Kevin Macdonald (“The Last King of Scotland”)!

Black Sea,” which opens in Chicago on Jan. 30, 2015 and is rated “R,” also stars Scoot McNairy, Ben Mendelsohn, Jodie Whittaker, Tobias Menzies, Grigoriy Dobrygin, Michael Smiley, Karl Davies, Konstantin Khabenskiy and Daniel Ryan from director Kevin Macdonald and writer Dennis Kelly. Note: You must be 17+ to enter and win this “R”-rated Hookup.

To win your free “Black Sea” passes courtesy of HollywoodChicago.com, just get interactive with our social media widget below. That’s it! This screening is on Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015 at 7 p.m. in downtown Chicago. The more social actions you complete, the more points you score and the higher yours odds of winning! Completing these social actions only increases your »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


2015 Sundance Diary: ‘A Walk in the Woods,’ ‘Eden,’ ‘Z for Zachariah’ & ‘Knock Knock’

25 January 2015 11:43 PM, PST

Park City, Utah – There are too many films and not enough time between shuttle shuffles and line waiting to cover the festival day by day. So, in pure improvised festival-going fashion, I’ll now be posting reviews for material that I see, but necessarily in viewing order. Enjoy!

A Walk in the Woods

A Walk in the Woods

Image credit: Sundance Institute

A human being who looks better at his current age than I ever will in my entire life, Robert Redford has a sprightly screen presence that has carried him through thick and thin, even brutal storms that live-or-die on his charisma (Aka “All is Lost,” one of the best films of 2013). For his next adventure, Redford goes softer than a survival story, but nonetheless into an amusing jaunt with “A Walk in the Woods.”

Based on the nonfictional accounts by New Hampshire writer Bill Bryson, Redford embodies the author as an amusing smart-ass, »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

Permalink | Report a problem


10 articles



IMDb.com, Inc. takes no responsibility for the content or accuracy of the above news articles, Tweets, or blog posts. This content is published for the entertainment of our users only. The news articles, Tweets, and blog posts do not represent IMDb's opinions nor can we guarantee that the reporting therein is completely factual. Please visit the source responsible for the item in question to report any concerns you may have regarding content or accuracy.

See our NewsDesk partners