2019

Feature: Top 20 Celebrity Photos of 2019, by Joe Arce of HollywoodChicago.com

CHICAGO – The year 2019 was when everyone, including myself, seemed to struggle to focus. Politics suddenly appeared to be all consuming when we have an administration as George Orwell predicted, trying to convince so many not to believe their own eyes.

Film Feature: The 10 Best Films of 2019, By Patrick McDonald

CHICAGO – An entire decade is biting the dust in the switch from 2019 to 2020, with an America that can experience the anarchy of our current times reflected in the movies. What better time to unleash the 10 BEST FILMS of 2019, as selected by Über Critic Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com.

Podtalk: Buddy Guy of ‘The Torch’ on Red Carpet at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Buddy Guy, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – Closing Night of the 55th Chicago International Film Festival was a celebration of a great one, the legendary Blues Man Buddy Guy, who came to Chicago in 1957 and made his mark on music from then on and forever. Filmmaker Jim Farrell captures it all in “The Torch,” the Closing Night documentary.

Red-Carpet Slideshow: The Faces and Movies of the 55th Chicago International Film Festival

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Gigi Pritzker, Producer of Opening Night film ‘Motherless Brooklyn.’

CHICAGO – That’s a wrap! The 55th Chicago International Film Festival, which concluded on Sunday, October 27th, brought glam and excitement to a high energy audience of Windy City film buffs. And they brought the star power to the Red Carpet, including Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne, WWE legend C.M.

Podtalk: Gael García Bernal on the Red Carpet at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Gael Garcia Bernal, photo by Joe Arce

CHICAGO – It was a Tribute Night at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival on October 26th, 2019, and the honoree was actor Gael García Bernal (“Mozart in the Jungle,” “Coco”), who was showcasing his latest film as director, “Chicuarotes.” A large gathering of his ardent fan base surrounded his walk on the Red Carpet before the screening.

Film News: ‘Portrait of a Lady on Fire’ is Top Film at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Portrait of a Lady on Fire

CHICAGO – The Chicago International Film Festival is competitive, and the 55th edition presented its awards on October 25th, 2019, at CHEZ venue in Chicago. The winner of the Gold Hugo as Best International Film was “Portrait of a Lady on Fire” (France), directed by Céline Sclamma.

CLOSING DAY 12 Podtalk: Jim Farrell of 'The Torch’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Torch, The

CHICAGO – Closing Night at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival will have a decidedly Chicago-centric feel. The legendary Buddy Guy, the Blues guitar man from Louisiana – who made his mark in the South Side clubs of the Windy City, and then internationally – is the subject of a new documentary, “The Torch,” which is directed by Jim Farrell.

DAY 11 Podtalk: 'The First Rainbow Coalition’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

First Rainbow Coalition, The

CHICAGO – A little known part of Chicago history has been revived in a new documentary called “The First Rainbow Coalition.” Filmmaker Ray Santisteban tells a comprehensive story of the first people-powered activist group that rose from the coming together of races and city sectors to fight police brutality and poverty.

DAY TEN Podtalk: ‘The Components of Love’ at 55th Chicago International Film Festival

Miriam Bliese, THE COMPONENTS OF LOVE

CHICAGO – When a director makes her international debut, there is a certain magic in the air. German director Miriam Bliese chose the 55th Chicago International Film Festival for that particular showcase, with her first feature film “The Components of Love.” The film will have its second screening at the Fest TODAY, October 25th at 5:30pm.

DAY NINE Podtalk: Haroula Rose of ‘Once Upon a River’ at 55th Chicago International Film Fest

Haroula Rose and Bonnie Jo Campbell of ONCE UPON A RIVER

CHICAGO – A Chicago director comes into focus with her debut film, “Once Upon a River” with a prime time screening on Friday, October 25th, 2019, at the 55th Chicago International Film Festival. Haroula Rose is a local filmmaker and notable musician who shot this film in Antioch, Illinois.

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TV, DVD, BLU-RAY & THEATER REVIEWS

  • Space Force

    CHICAGO – Seemingly ripped from the headlines, by way of “Dr. Strangelove,” the new Netflix TV series “Space Force” debuted on May 29th, 2020. Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com reviewed the series during the Eddie Volkman Show (Star 96.7 FM in Joliet, Illinois) on June 5th, 2020.

  • Adriana Leonard & Carley Marcelle

    CHICAGO – When two passionate content creators got together, they sought not only to produce a work of entertainment, but a higher philosophy within it. Co-Writers/Directors and Executive Producers Adriana Leonard and Carley Marcelle have created “Beta” A Digital Series, and they are about to launch it.

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