Rinko Kikuchi

Film Review: More Action, Less Enjoyment in ‘Pacific Rim Uprising’

CHICAGO – The giant robot film genre is in trouble. It wasn’t enough that “Transformers” has ground it to dust, but now the “Pacific Rim” sequel is going the same direction. There is action-a-plenty in the followup to Guillermo Del Toro’s fun and light first film, that lightness is missing in “Pacific Rim Uprising.”

Blu-ray Review: 2013 Hollywood Disaster ‘47 Ronin’ Rescued by Mediocrity

47 Ronin with Keanu Reeves

CHICAGO – If you’ve ever wondered what the difference is between a director and a producer, let “47 Ronin” explain how the hierarchy of creativity hinders the evolution of even the most straightforward-sounding pitches. “47 Ronin” is the type of samurai movie set in Japan that features native actors speaking only English, while Keanu Reeves stars as an outsider clearly plunked into the picture for stateside star power.

2014 Sundance Diary, Day 5: Memorable Characters Descend on Park City

Exhaustion is settling in but the movies have been consistently good to great. Four movies in a row that variably thrilled or entertained me but definitely left with strong impressions of unforgettable characters. And one of them may be a masterpiece.

Blu-ray Review: Guillermo Del Toro Provides Explosive Fun in ‘Pacific Rim’

Pacific Rim

CHICAGO – Guillermo Del Toro’s “Pacific Rim,” recently released on Blu-ray and DVD, has so much of what the other 2013 Summer blockbusters were missing. There was a disturbing sense of familiarity this year. Even the decent ones like the “Iron Man” and “Star Trek” sequels felt like things we had seen before. “Pacific Rim” returned wonder and spectacle to the world of the blockbuster and the result was Del Toro’s best English-language film. It’s a blast.

Film Review: ‘Pacific Rim’ is Classic Sci-fi Cult Movie Joy

CHICAGO – Leave it to the wondrous auteur, director Guillermo del Toro, to push the boundaries of giant science fiction epics simply by paying homage to their predecessors. The grand, glorious embrace of “Pacific Rim” leaves no stone of cult film fun unturned.

Film Review: ‘Norwegian Wood’ Marred By Choppy Editing, Mopey Melodrama

Norwegian Wood Film Review

CHICAGO – Tran Anh Hung’s adaptation of Haruki Murakami’s 1987 novel has garnered a bevy of negative reactions from literary fans, and it’s easy to see why. Pivotal characters remain underdeveloped despite the film’s two-hour-plus running time. Grand gestures are made without any tangible motivation. And epic romances are explored only through a few lustful glances.

Interview: Rachel Weisz Creates Magic With ‘The Brothers Bloom’

CHICAGO – Beautiful, brilliant and expressively talented, Rachel Weisz showcases a comedic side in her latest film, “The Brothers Bloom”, also featuring Adrien Brody, Mark Ruffalo and written/directed by the eclectic Rian Johnson (“Brick”).

Interview: Taking in the Information With ‘The Brothers Bloom’ Director Rian Johnson

Rian Johnson

CHICAGORian Johnson, the writer/director of the excellent “Brick,” has another slice of dazzling dialogue opening this weekend in the very entertaining “The Brothers Bloom,” an elaborate con game starring Adrien Brody, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel Weisz, and Rinko Kikuchi. He sat down for an exclusive interview the night before the Opening Night celebration for his film at last year’s Chicago Film Festival.

Exclusive Portrait: Oscar-Winning Actress Rachel Weisz on the Chicago Red Carpet For ‘The Brothers Bloom’

CHICAGO – Oscar-winning actress Rachel Weisz walked a Chicago red carpet on Oct. 16, 2008 for the premiere of the film “The Brothers Bloom” as part of the 2008 Chicago International Film Festival. The HollywoodChicago.com lens was there to photograph the moment.

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  • It's NOT ALL About You John Michael

    CHICAGO – John Michael epitomizes the art of the monologue. The Chicago transplant, by way of Dallas, is moving on (he says temporarily) from the city that inspired his last show, “Meatball Seance,” after notorious and successful runs of his other one-man shows, “John Michael and the Order of the Penix” and “Dementia Me.” His farewell performance is his latest, another laugh riot, “It’s NOT ALL About You John Michael,” and will take place at Mary’s Attic in Chicago’s Andersonville neighborhood on March 1st, 2019. Click here for details, including ticket information.

  • Soccer Player in the Closet, The 2

    CHICAGO – Connecting to the theater collective Nothing Without a Company means a couple of things. One, you may visit parts of Chicago you’ve never seen before – in this case a plant store in an industrial area south of Humboldt Park – and two, you will see some daring and outside-the-box stagings. “The Soccer Player in the Closet” is their latest production – a World Premiere – and it provides what the title implies and beyond. The play runs through March 17th, 2019. Click here for more details, including ticket information.

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