May 2019

‘Pokémon Detective Pikachu’ is Family Fun for All

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

CHICAGO – Let’s face it. If you’re not already obsessed with Pokémon, or the parent of someone who is, you’re not likely to land in a darkened theater with “Detective Pikachu” on the marquee. But for any newbies who happen to walk in, there are a few pleasures in this big budget kid friendly blockbuster.

Exclusive Photo: In Memoriam, Peter Mayhew of ‘Star Wars’

CHICAGO – Most likely Peter Mayhew stepped into movie history because he could fit into a costume. The seven-foot-three actor was the perfect size for a new character in a little film called “Star Wars,” and so he became the once and future persona of Chewbacca. Mayhew died in Texas on April 30th, 2019. He was 74.

Film Review: History & Culture Co-Exist in Exemplary ‘The White Crow’

White Crow, The

CHICAGO – In any ear for pop culture, the name Rudolf Nureyev is well known. A Soviet Russian-born ballet virtuoso nicknamed “Lord of the Dance,” RN lived large until he died, of complications due to AIDS at age 54 in 1993. But before that, he was born into poverty, danced into fame, and historically defected to the West in 1961. “The White Crow,” a new film directed by Ralph Fiennes, tells his story.

History & Culture Co-Exist in Exemplary ‘The White Crow’

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

CHICAGO – In any ear for pop culture, the name Rudolf Nureyev is well known. A Soviet Russian-born ballet virtuoso nicknamed “Lord of the Dance,” RN lived large until he died, of complications due to AIDS at age 54 in 1993. But before that, he was born into poverty, danced into fame, and historically defected to the West in 1961. “The White Crow,” a new film directed by Ralph Fiennes, tells his story.

Podtalk: ‘Pooh: The Derrick Rose Story’ at Midwest Independent Film Fest on May 7, 2019

Pooh: The Derrick Rose Story

CHICAGO – One of the most talked about Chicago sports stories of the last ten years has been Derrick Rose, the NBA stand out who was drafted to his hometown Bulls as the second coming of Michael Jordan in 2008, and was plagued by bad luck injuries and playing time limits that couldn’t satisfy the rabid fan base and media that demanded accountability. The Theatrical Premiere of “Pooh: The Derrick Rose Story” will take place at the Midwest Independent Film Festival on May 7th, 2019. Click here for tickets and details.

Film Review: 'Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile' Unfortunately Lives Up to Its Name

CHICAGO – Hearing the details of tragic stories, we often find it hard to understand how they got into that situation in the first place, especially since all the red flags are so obvious to us. “I’d never be so dumb,” we tell ourselves.

'Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile' Unfortunately Lives Up to Its Name

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 1.5/5.0
Rating: 1.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Hearing the details of tragic stories, we often find it hard to understand how they got into that situation in the first place, especially since all the red flags are so obvious to us. “I’d never be so dumb,” we tell ourselves. “Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil, and Vile” takes us through how easy it is to miss something that we’ve never truly seen.

Podtalk: Doc Director Penny Lane on Her New Film ‘Hail Satan?’

Hail Satan?

CHICAGO – Religion, and the separation of those institutions from the “state,” is an ongoing controversy in the United States. One such religious group may have found the ultimate solution to keep that separation in place. The Satanic Temple is an anarchist religion whose goal is to get a place at the table with the other holy influencers. They are profiled in director Penny Lane’s new film, “Hail Satan?”

Film Review: ‘Long Shot’ Awkwardly Combines Politics & Romance

CHICAGO – “Long Shot” is a bit of a hybrid that can’t quite decide what it wants to be. Is it a political satire, or is it another in a long line of Seth Rogen stoner comedies with a little rom com thrown in for good measure? It’s a little of both, with the shaggy dog stoner comedy the dominant form … making it a somewhat jarring and incongruous fit with the more political elements of this comedy.

‘Long Shot’ Awkwardly Combines Politics & Romance

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

CHICAGO – “Long Shot” is a bit of a hybrid that can’t quite decide what it wants to be. Is it a political satire, or is it another in a long line of Seth Rogen stoner comedies with a little rom com thrown in for good measure? It’s a little of both, with the shaggy dog stoner comedy the dominant form … making it a somewhat jarring and incongruous fit with the more political elements of this comedy.

Film Review: ‘UglyDolls’ is Animated Fun For Kids and Everyone Else

CHICAGO – The animation formula, for entertaining both kids and adults, is to never make the story too serious, and “UglyDolls” gets it right. The obvious moral lesson of “accepting yourself” is covered with great animating, memorable characters, peppy songs, and a sly sense of humor. In essence, made for the whole family.

‘UglyDolls’ is Animated Fun For Kids and Everyone Else

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

CHICAGO – The animation formula, for entertaining both kids and adults, is to never make the story too serious, and “UglyDolls” gets it right. The obvious moral lesson of “accepting yourself” is covered with great animating, memorable characters, peppy songs, and a sly sense of humor. In essence, made for the whole family.

Photo, Audio: In Memoriam, Agnés Varda of French New Wave Cinema

CHICAGO – If the French New Wave cinema movement (1958 to late 1960s) had a mother, it was undoubtably Agnés Varda. The versatile filmmaker began her film journey shortly before the movement began, and her influence resonated throughout that era and within her career. Varda died at the age of 90 on March 29th, 2019.

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