Bette Midler

On-Air Film Review: Divine Ms. Midler Witchery in ‘Hocus Pocus 2’

Hocus Focus 2

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on September 29th, 2022, reviewing “Hocus Pocus 2,” a Disney sequel to the bewitching 1993 original, streaming on Disney+ beginning September 30th.

Film Review: ‘The Addams Family 2’ is Pure Torture for Old & Young

Addams Family 2, The

CHICAGO – Sometimes sequels serve as a cinematic do-over, a second chance to fix what they got wrong the first time. Other times, they offer a chance to build on the bones of a good story and make it better.

Film News: ‘Green Book,’ Olivia Colman Shock at 91st Oscars

CHICAGO – After all the controversies that beset the 91st Academy Awards, the actual event continued to surprise, with the stunning upset of Olivia Colman (“The Favourite”) as the Best Actress honoree – besting heavily favored Glenn Close – to the naming of “Green Book” as Best Picture, which overcame a backlash regarding the liberties of its based-on-truth story.

Interview: Husbands of the Stage Musical ‘The First Wives Club’

CHICAGO – Like the recent movie-to-stage-musical adaptations, “The Producers” and “Young Frankenstein,” Chicago has become the proving ground before a Broadway premiere. The latest is almost a no-brainer, “The First Wives Club,” adapted from the 1996 film that starred Bette Midler, Goldie Hawn and Diane Keaton.

Blu-ray Review: Learn a Lesson by Not Seeing ‘Parental Guidance’

Parental Guidance

CHICAGO – “Parental Guidance” is embarassingly bad. Why on Earth Billy Crystal chose this anemic, cliched comedy to essentially come back from retirement is something I’ll never understand. Maybe the star of “City Slickers” and Oscar legend thought this would be his “Meet the Parents”. It’s not.

Film Review: No Scrooge in Billy Crystal with ‘Parental Guidance’

CHICAGO – As the bells toll this Christmas morn, the critical knots are untied and the new comedy, “Parental Guidance,” is deemed to be not bad – even though the marketing might have indicated otherwise. Billy Crystal and Bette Midler make merry and bright as two grandparents taking care of modern kids.

HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 40 Pairs of Passes to ‘Parental Guidance’ with Billy Crystal, Bette Midler

CHICAGO – In the latest HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film with our unique social giveaway technology, we have 40 pairs of movie passes up for grabs to the advance screening of “Parental Guidance” starring Billy Crystal and Bette Midler!

Theater Review: Evocative ‘For the Boys’ Must Blend Disconnected Song With Rich Story

CHICAGO – Musical theater takes on the burden or blessing of twice the challenge as songless theater. To earn widespread acclaim and timeless durability, a show will seamlessly balance song and story in perfect harmony. The two living, breathing creatures must symbiotically advance each other. If one’s stronger, one suffocates the other and both die.

Blu-Ray Review: Pets Deserve Better Than ‘Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore’

Cats & Dogs 2

CHICAGO – At its rare best, “Cats & Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore” recalls Looney Tunes productions with their brilliant blend of slapstick humor, wordplay, and breakneck pace. And the odd collection of TV-caliber guest stars including Fred Armisen (“Saturday Night Live”), Jack McBrayer (“30 Rock”), and Chris O’Donnell (“NCIS: Los Angeles”) along with a truly weird group of vocal performances that include Bette Midler and Nick Nolte of all people make for a film that sometimes resembles “Looney Tunes: Back in Action.” Sadly, resembling a funny movie does not make a comedy and this half-assed attempt at family entertainment should be sent to the pound.

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  • Velma

    CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on The Eddie Volkman Show with Hannah B on WSSR-FM (Star 96.7 Joliet, Illinois) on January 20th, reviewing the new series reboot “Velma,” created by Mindy Kaling and featuring the Scooby-Doo gang. Currently streaming on HBO Max.

  • Chicago Puppet Festival 2023

    CHICAGO – Call me an Ismael puppet. We’ll never know if that was the opening line Herman Melville intended for his classic “Moby Dick,” but the 5th Chicago International Puppet Festival presents their Opening Night marionette version on January 18th, 2023 (7:30p), and the fest runs through January 29th. For tickets and info, click 5TH PUPPET FEST.

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