CHICAGO – When faced with adversity, the best way around it is to somehow break into song. That is the feeling behind the Brown Paper Box Co.’s “Positively Present: An Uplifting Cabaret,” running April 7th and 8th at Mary’s Attic in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood. The event features company member Kristi Szczepanek as host, and presents song stylings by other company members, including Anna Schutz, plus some special guests. For details and ticket information, click here.
Film Review: Scarlett Johansson Packs a Blockbuster Punch in ‘Lucy’
CHICAGO – “Lucy” is a piece of high-minded cinematic junk food that manages to be outlandishly weird while still satisfying the lizard brain desires of its audience. It’s a film that knows what’ll get the behinds in the seats, and that appeal can effectively be summed up in one shot. It shows Scarlett Johansson in a tight-fitting white t-shirt walking in slow motion with her bosoms bouncing in unison, carrying two guns and ready to kick some serious ass. But amazingly enough, this is a movie with more than just ass-kicking on its mind.
Mercifully jettisoning some tortured backstory, French schlockmeister du jour Luc Besson instead drops us right into the middle of the action. Johansson stars as Lucy, an American in China who gets caught up in a drug smuggling scheme. She’s taken captive, and turned into one of a group of unwilling drug mules. She wakes up with a large package of an experimental new street drug inserted into her belly. When the pouch bursts inside her, it unlocks the full potential of her own brain. She begins to get smarter by the second as she uses more and more of her brain capacity.
We know precious little about Lucy, but then again we don’t really need to know much for the story to work. Johansson infuses her with an every-girl happy-go-lucky energy that morphs into a glare of cold calculation once her transformation begins. Her usual sultry voice changes into a robotic monotone that somehow still manages to be alluring.
Scarlett Johansson is the Title Character in ‘Lucy’
Photo credit: Universal Pictures