Dann Gire

Film Critic
  • Phone(847) 427-4530
  • Emaildgire@dailyherald.com
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Dann Gire came to the Daily Herald in 1975 and has held positions of government reporter, crime reporter, Metro reporter (assigned to the Cook County Criminal Courts), and film critic on the Features staff. He has served as the newspaper's film critic for 32 years.

Gire worked as the station's film critic at Chicago's Fox TV News from 1988 to 1991, and for four weeks this summer, contributed film critiques for CBS Chicago's "Monsters and Money in the Morning" TV news program.

From 1984 to 2006, he served as an adjunct faculty member at William Rainey Harper College in Palatine, teaching classes in drama, novels and short stories, film and literature, introductory journalism, mass communications and feature writing. From 2000 to 2006, he also became the faculty adviser to the Harbinger newspaper at Harper College. He was fired from both positions after a dispute with a Harper vice president over censorship issues at the paper. He subsequently gave testimony for the Higher Education committees of the Illinois Senate and Illinois House to promote passage of the Illinois College Campus Press Act that would make political firings of college newspaper staffs and faculty advisers illegal. The act became law on June 1, 2008.

Gire has taught journalism in the communications department at Aurora University since 2008. He also has been assisting professor Heidi Schlumpf in launching the university's first online newspaper, the Aurora Chronicle, in the fall of 2010.

Gire is the president and a founding director for the Chicago Film Critics Association, a nonprofit organization with charitable and educational goals. He wrote the organization's ethics code and founded the group's Zappa Committee charged with monitoring First Amendment violations against filmmakers and recommending responses to those violations.

He has won the Peter Lisagor Award for Exemplary Journalism in Arts Criticism (like the Chicago version of the Pulitzer Prize) six times. He has also won awards from the Association of Sunday and Feature Editors, The Associated Press, and other journalism organizations.

Every fall, Gire delivers a keynote presentation at the Embarras Valley Film Festival through his alma mater, Eastern Illinois University in downstate Charleston. It was at EIU that he taught his first college course in communications in 1975. He has been a member of the school's Journalism Advisory Council, as well as Harper College's Journalism Advisory Committee (until 2006).

Gire holds bachelor and master degrees in communications from Eastern Illinois University. He also served as sports editor, photography editor and co-editor-in-chief of the school's newspaper, the Daily Eastern News.

He is married to Peggy Gire, a longtime music teacher in Schaumburg District 54. They have two daughters: Lauren Elaine Taylor, currently on tour as Rizzo in the national Broadway production of "Grease," and Morgan Gire, who recently served as assistant director for the independent film production "Molly's Girl."

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Chicago Bliss players from suburbs part of new reality TV show

Oct 06 2015 | 12:35 am - A few suburban women who play on the Chicago Bliss football team will star in a new reality show, "Pretty.Strong" on the Oxygen network. The show focuses on life on the field and off for the bikini-clad players.

Neo-noir ‘Shanghai’ never really comes to life

Sep 30 2015 | 6:26 pm - "Shanghai” is an anemic, five-year-old neo-noir murder mystery/historical epic starring John Cusack uttering pseudo-Chandleresque voice-over narration.

Andrew Garfield faces hard times in morality tale ‘99 Homes’

Sep 30 2015 | 6:25 pm - The blistering contemporary morality tale “99 Homes” goes for the gut and heart over the brain.

Reel life: Blue Whiskey brings 'Blazing Saddles' to Star Cinema

Oct 01 2015 | 6:06 am - See Mel Brooks' classic "Blazing Saddles" at the Star Cinema Grill, sponsored by the Blue Whiskey Independent Film Festival's Cinema Series.

Smart, optimistic 'Martian' an entertainment supernova

Sep 30 2015 | 12:47 pm - Ridley Scott's "The Martian" blasts into the theatrical blue yonder, hitting us with a kajillion Gs of dramatic pressure and never lets up until the closing credits.

‘Walk’ takes viewers on spellbinding journey

Sep 29 2015 | 6:56 pm - At the end of Robert Zemeckis' 3-D IMAX "The Walk," we are spellbound, transfixed and frightened by one of the most galvanizing events ever committed to cinema. Read Dann Gire's review.

Acting quest leads Elk Grove Village native to ‘Spamalot’

Oct 01 2015 | 3:33 pm - Elk Grove Village native Joe Bianco decided he'd rather be a poor actor than work in retail. Now he's on stage as King Arthur at the Metropolis Performing Arts Centre's "Spamalot."

‘Goodnight Mommy’ a chilling look at our own darkness

Sep 23 2015 | 7:41 pm - "Goodnight Mommy" intends to horrify us, give us the screaming meemies, cause us nightmares and force us to confront the thin line between our civilized selves and our darker natures

Reel life: Dann & Raymond take a look at zombies

Sep 23 2015 | 7:15 pm - Dann & Raymond’s Movie Club has switched topics for its Thursday, Oct. 1, presentation to “Fright of the Living Dead: The Great Zombie Movies.” Hey, it’s more seasonal.

De Niro, Hathaway charm saves 'The Intern' from terminal cuteness

Sep 24 2015 | 6:04 am - Nancy Meyers' "The Intern" drops us into quicksand of sentiment and cuteness, saved by the charm of stars Anne Hathaway and Robert De Niro.

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