Sony Pictures Home Entertainment

Via Zoom: Day by Day with Robin Lamont of 1973’s ‘Godspell’

CHICAGO – Easter has just passed, and one of the film traditions during that holiday is the musical “Godspell.” This 1973 classic retells the story of Jesus from the Gospel of St. Matthew, through a group of hippie performers, including Victor Garber as Jesus. Robin Lamont sings the signature song in the show, “Day by Day.”

Film Review: ‘Watermelon Man’ is a Pivotal Film in Black Cinema History

Waternelon Man

CHICAGO – Patrick McDonald of HollywoodChicago.com appears on “The Morning Mess” with Scott Thompson on WBGR-FM (Monroe, Wisconsin) on February 25th, 2021, reviewing the 1970 film “Watermelon Man,” currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video.

Blu-ray Review: Sleepy Thriller ‘The Company You Keep’ Boasts Starry Cast

The Company You Keep Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Robert Redford has slowly become that grandfatherly figure who spends his time in the corner at family gatherings, lecturing nearby whippersnappers on the importance of challenging authority, while reminiscing about the war protests of generation’s past. He’s a well-meaning guy, but his crusty words of wisdom could use a shot of adrenaline.

DVD Review: Juno Temple Delivers Tour De Force in ‘Magic Magic’

Magic Magic DVD

CHICAGO – I suppose it was only a matter of time before Sebastián Silva delved into the brooding waters of psychodrama. There are countless moments in his previous pictures—from Catalina Saavedra’s piercing Bette Davis stare in “The Maid” to Michael Cera’s hallucinogenic agony in “Crystal Fairy”—that threaten to spiral into horrifying derangement.

Blu-ray Review: Minor Woody Allen Comedy ‘To Rome with Love’ Still Delights

To Rome with Love Blu-ray

CHICAGO – After acknowledging that the rewards of reality are infinitely preferable to the shallow pleasures of a nostalgic dreamworld in his Oscar-winning crowd-pleaser, “Midnight in Paris,” Woody Allen’s tirelessly neurotic psyche appears to be more calm and serene than ever before. Perhaps his compulsion to make one picture a year has finally brought him some sort of therapeutic catharsis.

Blu-ray Review: Unsatisfying ‘The Words’ Desperately Needed a Rewrite

The Words Blu-ray

CHICAGO – What sins can a man commit and manage to live with for the rest of his days? Can he enjoy the rewards of unearned praise and adoration? These provocative questions could easily serve as the basis for a compelling thriller, as proven by a multitude of titles including Woody Allen’s “Crimes and Misdemeanors” and “Match Point.”

Blu-ray Review: ‘Hope Springs’ Mars Great Acting with Awful Soundtrack

Hope Springs Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones are actors capable of conveying a richly layered inner life without uttering a single word. They have a miraculous method of making silence speak volumes. It’s in the lingering pauses and sudden hesitations between words where the story truly resides. I can’t picture two actors better suited to work together onscreen.

Blu-ray Review: Unnecessary ‘Men in Black 3’ Bolstered by Brilliant Ensemble

Men in Black 3 Blu-ray

CHICAGO – 2012 contained three great Tommy Lee Jones performances, and one of them was delivered by Josh Brolin. Whereas Jones himself was flat-out brilliant in “Hope Springs” and “Lincoln,” he was assigned the thankless task of playing second (or third) banana to the wisecracking, increasingly Bugs Bunny-like Will Smith in Barry Sonnenfeld’s wholly unnecessary third installment in the “Men in Black” franchise.

Blu-ray Review: ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ Lacks Charm of Predecessors

The Amazing Spider-Man Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Gritty realism proves to be a perfect fit for some superhero franchises, but “Spider-Man” isn’t one of them. The more grounded and practical the world of Peter Parker becomes, the sillier the whole thing gets. Sam Raimi’s trilogy flourished precisely because it resembled a cheerfully vibrant comic book come to life. In contrast, “The Amazing Spider-Man” is a bore.

Blu-ray Review: Tanya Wexler’s ‘Hysteria’ Celebrates Female Sexuality

Hysteria Blu-ray

CHICAGO – Tanya Wexler’s “Hysteria” is a feel-good movie about the dawn of an invention that redefined the meaning of “feel-good.” As America continues to harbor simultaneously puritanical and adolescent attitudes toward sex, films like “Hysteria” continue to be as vital as they are entertaining. In a way, the picture is as old-fashioned as any Hollywood crowd-pleaser, aside from its eyebrow-raising subject matter.

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  • Chicago Party Aunt

    CHICAGO – The funny meter of Netflix went off the scale last week, as the animated series “Chicago Party Aunt” made its debut on September 17th. What began as a Twitter account by comic actor Chris Witaske (who also provides his voice talent) has morphed into the cartoon adventures of Aunt Diane Dumbowski, her nephew Daniel, and an array of familiar Chicago-isms and characters.

  • Factory Theater, The

    CHICAGO – It’s time again for live theater in Chicago, and The Factory Theater – in anticipation of their 2021-22 Season – is launching “Quiet Please! It’s A Silent Auction,” an online silent auction through the month of August (the 1st-31st). An amazing array of goods and services are available for bidding, and can be accessed by clicking here.

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