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Patrick McDonald

Chicago Red Carpet: Common on His Lead Role in ‘Just Wright’

CHICAGO – The rapper and actor Common came back to his hometown of Chicago last week to participate in the red carpet premiere of his new film, “Just Wright,” co-starring Queen Latifah and Paula Patton (”Precious”).

Michael Caine Gets Dirty in the Intriguing ‘Harry Brown’

Michael Caine in "Harry Brown"

CHICAGO – Who needs the Dark Knight when there is Michael Caine, not as Alfred the Butler, but as the Vigilante Retiree and title character in “Harry Brown.” And he does it all without a rubber suit, just tons of firepower.

Interview: Donisha Brown on the Enduring Show Legacy of ‘STOMP’

CHICAGO – The dance and percussion show, “STOMP,” part of popular culture for close to 20 years, performs again in Chicago at the Bank of America Theater from April 28th through May 2nd. Donisha Brown, a “co-rehearsal Director” and performance artist in the show for over 11 years, is a crucial part of STOMP’s endurance.

Slideshow: ‘Iron Man 2’ Red-Carpet Premiere With Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow

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Sylvester Stallone and Robert Downey, Jr.

HOLLYWOOD – Monday night was the night for the cool exec with the heart of steel, as the highly anticipated “Iron Man 2” premiered at the El Capitan Theater in Hollywood with a gala red carpet. In attendance were stars Robert Downey, Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Mickey Rourke and Scarlett Johansson.

Interview: ‘22 Years From Home’ Director Malachi Leopold

Kuek Gurang of "22 Years From Home"

CHICAGO – The “Lost Boys” of Sudan in African history has carved a place in culture representing extreme acts of terror in the midst of civil war. Malachi Leopold, a Chicago producer/director, will debut his documentary profiling one of those Lost Boys – Kuek Gurang – in “22 Years From Home,” April 27th at the Music Box Theatre here.

Hal Holbrook Illuminates the Dying Light in ‘That Evening Sun’

CHICAGO – There are no epitaphs to be written if life is still coursing through the veins. In the film “That Evening Sun,” Hal Holbrook expresses the life coursing through him, as both a great actor and innate human being.

Oscar-Winning ‘The Secret in Their Eyes’ Peers Into Argentina’s Past

The Secret in Their Eyes

CHICAGO – The 2009 Best Foreign Language Film, the compelling “The Secret in Their Eyes” from Argentina, explores a corrupt past with a longing and regret, through characters who seek to rectify their bygone days.

No Redeeming Quality to Jennifer Lopez’s ‘The Back-up Plan’

CHICAGO – “The Back-up Plan,” starring Jennifer Lopez, is spectacularly bad. Filled with leaden, supposedly comedic lines, stupid generalities and no basis in reality, this film ranks first in class for worst of 2010 so far.

Interview: Oscar-Winning ‘The Secret in Their Eyes’ Director Juan José Campanella

CHICAGO – And the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film goes to…”The Secret in Their Eyes,” Argentinian director Juan José Campanella’s complex, compelling and political treatise on facing the demons and ghosts of the past.

‘The Perfect Game’ Proves That Baseball Fiction is Duller Than Truth

The Perfect Game

CHICAGO – The 1957 Little League team from Monterrey, Mexico, was the first non-U.S. team to win that league’s World Series. That is a fact. “The Perfect Game” creates a story based on that fact that is as improbable as a team from Mars winning the big game.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Cher Show, The

    CHICAGO – Cherilyn Sarkisian… yes, that is her birth name… is the redoubtable Cher, and it’s perfect timing for her to have a jukebox musical tribute. “The Cher Show,” covering three eras/songs of the six-decade career of Cher, opens for a Chicago preview before its Broadway run, from June 12th through July 25th, 2018.

  • ThroatPunch

    CHICAGO – The provocative title of Sharon Krome’s new stage play, “ThroatPunch,” does not contain that particular fight technique. But it does have standout performances by the three person cast, as they make their way in Chicago, circa 1983, amid their emerging twentysomething punk rock attitude. The World Premiere of the show has a Thursday-Sunday run at the Chicago Mosaic School through June 3rd, 2018. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

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