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2017

Slideshow, Audio: Closing Night ‘The Shape of Water’ at 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

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Michael Shannon is Agent Strickland in ‘The Shape of Water.’

CHICAGO – Put the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival in the books, as the spectacular Closing Night film was “The Shape of Water,” directed by Guillermo Del Toro, and featured Michael Shannon and Michael Stuhlbarg, who both walked the Red Carpet on October 26th, 2017, and was joined by producer Daniel Kraus.

Exclusive Photo, Audio: Patrick Stewart at 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

CHICAGO – Make it so, and the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival accomplished “it,” honoring Patrick Stewart at a tribute event on October 25th, 2017. The versatile actor gained fame as Star Trek’s Jean Luc-Picard and X-Men’s Charles Xavier, AKA Professor X.

Slideshow, Audio: Bill Pullman Red Carpet at 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

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Bill Pullman at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival.

CHICAGO – Bill Pullman is one of Hollywood’s treasures. The rogue-ish and handsome actor has been plying his trade for over 30 years, in such classics as “Spaceballs,” “A League of Their Own,” “While You Were Sleeping,” “Independence Day,” “Lost Highway” and the recent “Battle of the Sexes.” His latest film, which he previewed at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival with director Jared Moshe, is a western called “The Ballad of Lefty Brown.”

Slideshow, Audio: Black Perspectives Red Carpet at 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

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Alfre Woodard at her tribute at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival.

CHICAGO – It was an evening to celebrate the Black Perspective in filmmaking at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival, and also to celebrate one of the great African American actors with a tribute to Alfre Woodard. Woodard walked the Red Carpet on October 21st, 2017, with fellow actors Regina Taylor (“I’ll Fly Away”) and Jussie Smollett (“Empire”).

Exclusive Portrait, Audio: Vanessa Redgrave at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

Vanessa Redgrave, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – The luminous and legendary movie star Vanessa Redgrave was given a tribute at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival on October 16th, 2017. The Oscar-winning actress also directed a documentary that she brought to the festival, an overview of the world’s refugee crisis entitled “Sea Sorrow.” HollywoodChicago.com talked to Redgrave, and photographer Joe Arce took the Exclusive Portrait.

Preview: Week Two Films at 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

CIFF 2017 Week Two

CHICAGO – The 53rd Chicago International Film Festival is winding down, with the closing night film set for Thursday, October 26th, 2017 (“The Shape of Water”). But there are still many films to go until the end, and Jon Lennon Espino and Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com preview some choices for week two.

Podtalk: ‘Liquid Truth’ at the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

Liquid Truth

CHICAGO – In a story that could be happening right now, Brazilian director Carolina Jabor adapted a stage play into “Liquid Truth,” about a swim teacher (portrayed by Daniel de Oliveira) who experiences a smear campaign by a parent on social media after being accused of being too familiar with of his students.

Podtalk: ‘Maktub’ Premieres at 53rd Chicago International Film Festival on Oct. 15, 2017

Maktub

CHICAGO – The world comes to Chicago for the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival, and screenwriters/lead actors Guy Amir and Hanan Savyon has brought their new film “Maktub” for screening on Sunday night, October 15th, 2017 (8pm). The unique comedy is the first film for the Israeli television hitmakers.

Interview, Audio: Artistic Director Mimi Plauché on 53rd Chicago International Film Festival

CHICAGO – In May of this year, Cinema/Chicago – the parent organization of the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) – announced that Mimi Plauché was the new Artistic Director of the Fest. She assumed the position that had formally been held by CIFF founder Michael Kutza, who continues as President and CEO.

Film News: Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema Announces 2017 Fall Season & Opening Night

Asian Pop Up Cinema Season Five

CHICAGO – On September 20th, 2017, Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema will kickoff their Fall 2017 film series, their Season Five. “The Gangster’s Daughter,” a Taiwanese drama about a rebellious teen reunited with her gangster father, will begin the series on Wednesday, September 20th, 2017, at the AMC River East Theatre in downtown Chicago, with director Chen Mei-Juin will be in attendance. For complete details and to purchase tickets, click here.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Bobby Pin Girls

    CHICAGO – The “breeder years” are difficult on everyone, as the biological imperative becomes overwhelming and the couplings that result yield both discovery and misadventure. Nothing Without a Company’s new play “Bobby Pin Girls” highlight two such Millennial women, roommates who are having man trouble, although the argument can be made that it’s eternally “boy trouble.” The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Chicago Mosaic School through December 3rd, 2017. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • Transformers 5 front

    CHICAGO – Knock me over with a feather kids, but I enjoyed “Transformers: The Last Knight.” Maybe it was in comparison to the others or maybe director Michael Bay has beaten me into submission, but this one had the right story elements and casting to make it work, with exceptions of course. It’s goofiness is its charm, and it was released on Blu-Ray/DVD on September 26th, 2017 (Digital HD already available).

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