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Blythe Danner

Podtalk: Robert Forster & Elizabeth Chomko of ‘What They Had’

CHICAGO – Families dealing with the effects of aging parents – which include dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease – can experience a new film which explores these topics through the family dynamic. “What They Had” is writer/director Elizabeth Chomko’s debut, and features Robert Forster, Blythe Danner, Hilary Swank and Michael Shannon.

Photos, Audio: Red Carpet for ‘What They Had’ at 54th Chicago International Film Festival

Elizabeth Chomko & Robert Forster, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – He’s a legendary character actor that began his career in 1967. She’s a first time director interpreting her own script, which that legend called “the best he’s ever been in.” Robert Forster portrays Burt in writer/director Elizabeth Chomko’s “What They Had,” also featuring Hilary Swank, Michael Shannon, Blythe Danner and Taissa Farmiga. Forster and Chomko walked the Red Carpet representing the film at the 54th Chicago International Film Festival on Monday, October 15th, 2018.

Film News: DAY SIX of 54th Chicago International Film Festival Discovers ‘Friedkin Uncut’

Friedkin Uncut

CHICAGODAY SIX of the 54th Chicago International Film Festival (CIFF) on Monday, October 15th, 2018, features a tribute to the Chicago-born director William Friedkin (“The Exorcist,” “The French Connection”), two made-in-Chicago films and four films vying in the International Competition.

Podtalk: Director Brett Haley on Rhythms in ‘Hearts Beat Loud’

CHICAGO – There is no better Father’s Day present at the movies than director Brett Haley’s new film, “Hearts Beat Loud.” It’s the story of a single Dad, portrayed by Nick Offerman, dealing with his about-to-go-to-college daughter. The riff in the film is that they are also songwriters together, and that becomes a major conflict.

Interview, Audio: Director Brett Haley Discovers ‘The Hero’

CHICAGO – The familiar character actor and voiceover artist, Sam Elliott, has been breaking out in that latter part of his career. Known for his cowboy roles, smooth bass-tone voice and epic mustache, the icon has been seen lately in diverse roles in “Grandma,” “Digging for Fire,” “Grace and Frankie” and his latest – and perhaps greatest – “The Hero.”

Film Review: Life is Never Over in ‘I’ll See You in My Dreams’

CHICAGO – Fairy tales can come true, it can happen to you, if you’re the main character in “I’ll See You in My Dreams.” Blythe Danner portrays a long-time widow whose routine is set, but life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans. The series of extraordinary events are life lessons, at a point in life where class is dismissed.

DVD Review: Sundance Hits with Different Results in ‘Hello I Must Be Going,’ ‘Nobody Walks’

Hello I Must Be Going Review

CHICAGO – As I learned on my inaugural trip to Sundance (check out all the coverage here) this year, there is common discussion as to how things will play outside of the thin mountain air of Park City. People wonder what will be the next “Beasts of the Southern Wild” or “Winter’s Bone” and what will never get the hype it gets at Sundance. Two films that peaked at Sundance 2012, “Hello I Must Be Going” and “Nobody Walks” were recently released on DVD. One is worth your time while the other never should have come off the snowy mountain.

Film Review: ‘Hello I Must Be Going’ Provides Well-Deserved Star Vehicle for Melanie Lynskey

Hello I Must Be Going Review

CHICAGO – Melanie Lynskey is one of those effortlessly sublime character actresses who always seemed destined for stardom. At age 16, she made an astonishing film debut in Peter Jackson’s “Heavenly Creatures” opposite Kate Winslet. In the years that followed, she has proven adept at playing everything from a good-hearted stepsister (in “Ever After”) to a severely screwed-up mom (in “Win Win”).

Blu-ray Review: Awful ‘The Lucky One’ Makes Other Romantic Melodrama Look Better

The Lucky One

CHICAGO – The Blu-ray of Scott Hicks’ horrendous “The Lucky One” includes special features called “Zac Efron Becomes a Marine,” “Watch the Sparks Fly - The Romantic World of The Lucky One,” and “Zac and Taylor’s Amazing Chemistry.” This is false advertising. Because it implies that Mr. Efron believably becomes a Marine, the film is even slightly romantic, or that its two stars have an ounce of chemistry. This is the bottom of the Nicholas Sparks barrel, an inert romantic drama that fails on every level.

Film Review: ‘The Lucky One’ Suffers From Emotionally Constipated Performances

CHICAGO – I’m of two minds about the work of Nicholas Sparks. On one hand, I admire his sensitive portrayals of good-hearted people, particularly young lovers, which serve as comfort food for teenagers overwhelmed by peer pressure.

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