Patrick McDonald

Interview: Aaron Schneider Directs Robert Duvall, Bill Murray in ‘Get Low’

CHICAGO – The legend of a 1930s country hermit – part folk tale, part exaggeration and some truth – comes to life through director Aaron Schneider and the great Robert Duvall in the new film “Get Low.” Also featuring Bill Murray and Sissy Spacek, this character driven drama is a pastiche of secrets, regrets and redemption.

Interview: Director Brian Miller on ‘Caught in the Crossfire,’ 50 Cent

Caught in the Crossfire

CHICAGO – “Caught in the Crossfire,” directed by Brian A Miller, is a gritty, essential cop drama about urban gang warfare, law enforcement corruption and police informants. It includes breakout roles for Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and the usual comedic Chris Klein, and features a standout performance by Adam Rodriguez of “CSI Miami.”

Film Review: Spirituality, Zac Efron Overcome Plot Holes in ‘Charlie St. Cloud’

Zac Efron, "Charlie St. Cloud

CHICAGO – The rise of Zac Efron has been one of the more interesting movie stories of the past year. Fresh from his notable role in “Me and Orson Welles,’ Efron takes the lead in “Charlie St. Cloud,” with veteran actors Ray Liotta and Kim Basinger. This journey into afterlife issues highlights some nice acting chops from Efron.

Film Review: Steve Carrell, Paul Rudd Serve ‘Dinner for Schmucks’

CHICAGO – The third of the Steve Carrell Seasonal Movie Trilogy debuts with the uneven but absurd comedy “Dinner for Schmucks.” Paul Rudd, now the go-to actor for straight-man-yuppie-turned-wild-dude joins a strong cast, including the ubiquitous Zach Galifianakis, Jemaine Clement (”Flight of the Concords”), and Bruce Greenwood.

Slideshow: 23-Image Photo Gallery of ‘Dinner for Schmucks’

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Steve Carrell is Barry and Paul Rudd is Tim in ‘Dinner for Schmucks.’

CHICAGO – Summer comedy gets a stellar cast and lots of laughs in the new film “Dinner for Schmucks,” starring Steve Carrell, Paul Rudd, Zach Galifianakis, Jemaine Clement, Bruce Greenwood and Kristen Schaal. Directed by Jay Roach (”Meet the Parents”), this fun film is a mixture of absurd characters and hilarious situations.

Interviews: George Kennedy, Carol Lynley at the Hollywood Celebrities Show

George Kennedy, photograph by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – The 1960s movie stars, captured forever on celluloid in their era, still thrive and survive. At the recent Hollywood Celebrities & Memorabilia Show, Oscar winner George Kennedy (”Cool Hand Luke”) and cult star Carol Lynley (”Bunny Lake is Missing”) spoke about the long time passing 1960s.

Exclusive Portrait: Natalie Merchant With First Album in Seven Years

Natalie Merchant, photograph by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – Natalie Merchant, formerly the lead singer for 10,000 Maniacs, has come back with a solo album after a seven year hiatus. “Leave Your Sleep” has an unusual theme, as it takes verse from the 19th and 20th Century poets and sets it to music best described as lullabies, written for her daughter.

Interviews: 1970s Movie Stars at the Hollywood Celebrities Show

Fred Williamson, photographed by Joe Arce.

CHICAGO – The 1970s were the golden age for the youthful, angst-ridden style of filmmaking, but it also had its share of fun with James Bond, super bad action films and Burt Reynolds comedies. Richard “Jaws” Kiel, Fred “The Hammer” Williamson and character actor James Hampton experienced that side of the 1970s, and told all at the Hollywood Celebrities & Memorabilia Show.

Exclusive Portrait: Pat Benatar Gets Clicked With Her Best Shot

Pat Benatar, photograph by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – Pat Benatar, the rocker best known for her mega-hits “Heartbreaker,” “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” and “Love is a Battlefield,” is now an author. She was recently in Chicago promoting her memoir “Between a Heart and a Rock Place” at the Borders Books on Michigan Avenue.

Just For Laughs Chicago: George Wendt Leads Big Cast in ‘Da Bears’

Just for Laughs Chicago, Da Bears Team

CHICAGO – Da Super Fans were out in force on a spectacular Saturday night at the Park West in Chicago, as the TBS Network’s “Just for Laughs” Festival presented “Da Bears Movie Dat Wasn’t.” George Wendt, Joe Mantegna, Horatio Sanz and Da Coach, Mike Ditka, provided the hilarity.

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