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Film News: Asian Pop-Up Cinema Presents Chicago Premiere of ‘The Search’ on Mar. 22, 2017

Search, The Tibet

CHICAGO – The fourth season of Chicago’s Asian Pop-Up Cinema series continues with the Chicago premiere of “The Search” on Wednesday, March 22nd, 2017, at the AMC River East Theatre in downtown Chicago. “The Search” is the first film ever made in western China’s Tibet Autonomous Region, with a full Tibetan crew and language (with English subtitles). For complete details and to purchase tickets, click here.

Film News: Season 4 of Asian Pop-Up Cinema Begins in Chicago with ‘Survival Family’ on Mar. 1, 2017

Survival Family

CHICAGO – What defines success? How about another Season, the Fourth, for the Asian Pop-Up Cinema Festival in Chicago. The premiere themed fest will kick off its 2017 Spring Season run with Shinobu Yaguchi’s “Survival Family” on Wednesday, March 1st, 2017, at the AMC River East Theatre in downtown Chicago. Filmmaker Yaguchi-san will be in attendance, as well as moderator Mark Schilling from the Japan Times. For complete details and to purchase tickets, click here.

Film Review: Odd Times at the Cinema with ‘The Great Wall’

CHICAGO – Taking a concept higher than the Wall that inspired it, and mostly succeeding, “The Great Wall” gets a nod as one of the oddest stories in a long time. Pre-supposedly based on a “legend,” it brings Matt Damon into ancient China to help battle lizard monsters at the Great Wall. Book it.

Interview: Meiling Jin Premieres Made-in-Chicago ‘Chop Chop TV Show’ on Dec. 22, 2016

Meiling Jin of 'Chop Chop'

CHICAGO – Tenacity and purpose reaps benefits, and no one knows this more than hard-working Chicago journalist, actress, producer and model Meiling Jin. She is the producer and lead actress in the new made-in-Chicago sitcom, “Chop Chop TV Show” (AKA “Chop Chop”), premiering on December 22nd, 2016 (11pm CST), on Comcast, Xfinity, WOW and RCN broadcast systems Channel 25. The show combines Ms. Jin, her roommate, and her diverse friendships in a series of adventures and misadventures in the great city of Chicago.

Interview: Jennifer Zhang for ‘A-Squared’ Asian American Performing Arts Festival From Oct. 20-23, 2016

Jennifer Zhang

CHICAGO – Chicago’s cultural scene is diverse and expansive, and nothing proves that more than the “A-Squared” Theatre presenting the Asian American Performing Arts Festival – now through Sunday, October 23rd, 2016 (link below). One of the performers at the fest is Jennifer Zhang, who is a musician, actress and model, and has also represented the city as “Miss Friendship Ambassador of Chicago” through the Asian community.

Interview: Sophia Wong Boccio of Asian Pop-Up Cinema on Closing-Night Gala on May 20, 2016

Asian Pop Up Cinema 2016 Logo

CHICAGO – One of the gems of the Chicago film scene began last year, and is successfully finishing its second season. The Asian Pop-Up Film Festival is the invention of its founder, Sophia Wong Boccio, a Hong Kong native who has lived all over the world, but never forgot her background in film, rooted from her parents. With that passion, she began the festival to share her vast knowledge of films from China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Thailand and Vietnam, and expand access to them in Chicago.

Preview: First Weekend of 50th Chicago International Film Festival

CHICAGO – The 2014 edition, the 50th Chicago International Film Festival, kicks off tonight on October 9th. The premiere film will be “Miss Julie,” an adaptation of the August Strindberg play adapted and directed by Liv Ullmann. The first weekend promises a scintillating variety of cinema indulgences.

Film Review: ‘Samsara’ is a Film That Will Be Whatever You Want

CHICAGO – It is revitalizing to take a break from traditional cinema, and the new artistic film “Samsara” is a non-linear quasi-documentary and travelogue that is a parade of images contemplating existence and the beauty around us. Who doesn’t need that tonic of meditation every so often?

Interview: Director Alison Klayman of ‘Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry’

Ai WeiWei: Never Sorry

CHICAGO – The behemoth that is China, in both population and world dominance, has its underbelly exposed through the new documentary, “Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry.” Written and directed by American expatriate Alison Klayman, this documentary of a famous Chinese artist named Ai Weiwei – whose dissident artistic expression woke up his fellow citizens and invited scrutiny from a angry government – is a one-of-a-kind story.

Jackie Chan, Jaden Smith Are Kickin’ it in Remake of ‘The Karate Kid’

CHICAGO – Despite any resistance that must have been felt in remaking the quasi-classic 1984 film “The Karate Kid,” veteran Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith put their best kicking feet forward and spin some new cloth out of the old material. In resetting the location and putting in some surreal modern touches, this remake mostly succeeds.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Kid Thing, The

    CHICAGO – Like the awesome Engine Who Could, the mighty Nothing Without a Company stage crafters have constructed another triumph at their new home in Berger Mansion on Chicago’s north side. “The Kid Thing” – written by Sarah Gubbins – is a terse, convincing and emotional play about fear, identity and breeding, and it is performed by its cast of five with utter authenticity. The show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Berger North Mansion through April 15th, 2017. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

  • Wiz, The

    CHICAGO – When stage theater can cause outbreaks of elation, celebration and joy, then it must be due to Kokandy Productions’ revival of “The Wiz.” The urban reinterpretation of “The Wizard of Oz” story – told through tuneful euphoria and jubilant dance – is ecstatically produced, in every morsel of its stagecraft.

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