Iraq

Film Review: ‘Vice’ Proves It’s Okay to Laugh at Dick Cheney

CHICAGO – “Vice” is an occasionally very funny attempt to demystify the life and legacy of former Vice President of the United States, Dick Cheney. Using some of the same gimmicks and narrative trickery he employed to great effect in “The Big Short,” writer/director Adam McKay goes deep into the weeds to try to explain how Cheney made it to the second highest office in the land.

Exclusive Portrait: Former President George W. Bush in Chicagoland

George W. Bush, photo by Joe Arce.

CHICAGO – Former president George W. Bush appeared in Naperville, Ill., at Anderson’s Bookshop to promote his book, “41: A Portrait of My Father.” The tome is a memoir of the Bush patriarch, George H.W. Bush, who was the 41st president.

Interview: ‘The Girls on Liberty Street’ at 2013 Chicago International Film Festival

Girls on Liberty Street, The

CHICAGO – In a situation that has happened in many U.S. households over the last ten years, the new film “The Girls on Liberty Street” explores the days leading up to a family shipping on of their own to the Army. The twist is that the potential soldier is female, and the reaction to this in the story is rich and nuanced. The film was produced, written and directed by John A. Rangel, and produced by David Rokos.

Film Review: ‘The Patience Stone’ Reveals Eternal Truths

CHICAGO – Despite any manmade restrictions through governments, religion, commerce or trumped-up morality, the truth has a way of mightily conquering all. “The Patience Stone” is a perfect example of that luxurious truth, and it is an important contemporary fairy tale.

Film Review: ‘The Devil’s Double’ Magnifies the Sorrows of Iraq

Devil's Double, The

CHICAGO – There is evil all over the world, as long as there are human beings whose lust for power overcomes any semblance of morality. Iraq seems to be ground zero for those consequences, broken from within and invaded from the outside. It is the surreal tale of Saddam Hussein’s oldest son Uday that’s outlined in “The Devil’s Double.”

Film Review: Sean Penn, Naomi Watts Revive Valerie Plame in ‘Fair Game’

Fair Game, Naomi Watts

CHICAGO – The key line in “Fair Game,” a distillation of Valerie Plame’s outing as a CIA operative in 2003, is intoned by character actor Bruce McGill, in a scene reminiscent of the “Mr. X” moment in the “JFK” movie. Pointing to the White House and the Bush Administration, he simply says, “there are the most powerful men in the history of the world.”

Film Review: Ryan Reynolds Gets Beneath it in Tense Thriller ‘Buried’

Buried, Ryan Reynolds 2

CHICAGO – In one of the most unusual settings for a film, actor Ryan Reynolds performs as a one-man tour de force as the only on-screen character in the new film “Buried.” Set in a coffin buried beneath the sands of Iraq, Reynolds conveys the panic, hope and inevitable outcome of a man buried alive and fighting for his very existence.

Interview: Ryan Reynolds, Director Rodrigo Cortés Uncover ‘Buried’

CHICAGO – “Buried” is an unconventional film, a so-called (by director Rodrigo Cortés) impossible film to make. Ryan Reynolds is the only actor on-screen in the whole film, and he plays a man buried alive somewhere in the war zone of Iraq. The story takes place within the coffin underneath the ground, and Reynolds had to convey both the desperation and hope.

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