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Interview, Audio: Director Geremy Jasper Rocks ‘Patti Cake$’

CHICAGO – How does a filmmaker create a movie about a white girl in New Jersey dreaming of being a hip-hop star? He takes the beats from his own life admiration of the music genre and fleshes out a working class story about pushing back against the odds. Geremy Jasper wrote and directed the electrically poignant “Patti Cake$.”

Interview, Audio: Danielle Macdonald on Title Role in ‘Patti Cake$’

CHICAGO – How does a native Australian actress become a New Jersey hip hop artist? Practice, practice, practice… in formulating the character of “Patti Cake$.” Danielle Macdonald, who had never rapped before in her life, portrayed the title Jersey Girl with a stellar determination, poignancy and heart.

Interview, Audio: Bridget Everett Plays Mom in ‘Patti Cake$’

CHICAGO – Bridget Everett is a New York City entertainment maven, as a singer and “cabaret provocateur.” She is breaking out recently as a movie actor, with the just-released comedy “Fun Mom Dinner” and her latest role, as a mother to “Patti Cake$,” a white girl hip-hop artist from New Jersey with a determination of gold.

Video Game Review: ‘Def Jam Rapstar’ Makes For Fun Party Alternative

Def Jam Rapstar
HollywoodChicago.com Video Game Rating: 3.5/5.0
Video Game Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – With “DJ Hero 2,” “Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock” and “Rock Band 3” likely to take over families and parties for the next few months, do we really need another music game? Especially one from Konami, a company that hasn’t exactly broken the mold when it comes to karaoke games? Luckily, “Def Jam Rapstar” delivers exactly what you should expect from it — nothing much more than stupid fun.

Blu-Ray Review: ‘The Wackness’ Releases Dope Features For Slightly Wack Movie

The Wackness

CHICAGO – The coming-of-age comedy “The Wackness” with Josh Peck, Ben Kingsley, Olivia Thirlby, Mary-Kate Olsen, Method Man, and Famke Janssen may feature a bouncing hip-hop soundtrack and be about joyful things like first love, but it’s an oddly inert, haze-filled film, as if the regular marijuana usage in the film cast a haze over the entire project.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Wonder Woman

    CHICAGO – There are few films in 2017 that are as historically important as they are cinematically well-crafted. Of those, there is only one I saw three times in theaters. That honor comes in the form of the revolutionary “Wonder Woman,” which not only shows huge promise for the future of DC Comics films but for comic book-based films as a whole.

  • Monica Raymund on set for 'Tanya'

    CHICAGOTV fans know Monica Raymund as paramedic Gabby Dawson on the long-running “Chicago Fire.” But the talented actor is expanding her range, debuting her first film as director, “Tanya,” at the Midwest Independent Film Festival on Tuesday, August 1st, 2017. The short film – written by Sam Forman – will be part of “Female Filmmakers Night” at the Midwest Indie, and is part of Raymund’s involvement with Hidden Tears Project, an organization dedicated to raising consciousness by creating media on gender inequality, sexual abuse and human trafficking.

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