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Articles filed under Movies

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  • Jazzy 'Whiplash' leads a most violent year of excellence in cinema Dec 26, 2014 5:45 AM
    The best film of 2014 should be one that speaks to a critic on a personal level, one that captures the eyes, ears, brain and heart in a way other movies almost do, but don't. That movie would be “Whiplash,” from first-time director Damien Chazelle. “Whiplash” explodes with the manic energy of a first-time filmmaker stoked to show the world what he can do. Every scene bristles with tension.

  • Streaming release of ‘Interview’ test for industry Dec 25, 2014 6:05 PM
    Sony’s “The Interview” has been a hacking target, a punchline and a political lightning rod. Now, with its release online at the same time it debuts in theaters, it has a new role: a test for a new kind of movie release. “The Interview” stars Seth Rogen and James Franco as journalists tasked by the CIA with killing North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Its Christmas Day release was canceled by Sony after threats of violence by hackers linked to North Korea. But after an outcry, the release was reinstated in some independent theaters and now, through a few online video services.

  • No problems at sold out ‘Interview’ screenings Dec 25, 2014 9:29 PM
    Moviegoers seeking laughs or looking to make a political statement rushed to two of the suburban movie theaters that elected to show “The Interview” on Christmas. So many people came to see “The Interview” at midnight that owner Debbie Benjamin had to open an additional screen at Buffalo Grove Theatres.

  • Our picks for some of the year's best performances Dec 25, 2014 5:00 AM
    The best of the movies of 2014 are celebrated with a run-down of the actor and actress of the year and other notable honors, as selected by our film critic, Dann Gire.

  • 'Zero Motivation' jumps around a lot for a military comedy Dec 25, 2014 5:00 AM
    Talya Lavie's military comedy “Zero Motivation” has been aptly described as “Private Benjamin” meets “M*A*S*H*” meets “Office Space,” and that's a fair description of the subject and style the Israeli filmmaker employs in her third feature, a crazy, lumpy mix of feminism, supernatural possession, attempted military rape, friendship and brainless bureaucracy.

  • Amy Adams finds the quiet strength in Margaret Keane Dec 24, 2014 5:22 PM
    Amy Adams didn’t connect with the character of Margaret Keane when she first read the script for “Big Eyes.” She cannot remember whether it was right before or right after she’d given birth to her daughter, but for Adams, who was determined to play more confident characters after she got a taste of one in “The Fighter,” the story looked to her like victimization. But then she read it again, later, and everything came into focus.

  • Who hacked Sony becomes Internet’s new mystery Dec 24, 2014 6:06 PM
    Everyone has a theory about who really hacked Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. Despite President Barack Obama’s conclusion that North Korea was the culprit, the Internet’s newest game of whodunit continues. Top theories include disgruntled Sony insiders, hired hackers, other foreign governments or Internet hooligans. Even some experts are undecided, with questions about why the communist state would steal and leak gigabytes of data, email threats to some Sony employees and their families and then threaten moviegoers who planned to watch “The Interview” on Christmas.

  • Ticket rush for ‘The Interview’ in Buffalo Grove, Woodridge Dec 24, 2014 4:17 PM
    “The Interview” is not only available online starting at noon today, but the Buffalo Grove Theater will be the first in the area to screen the movie at midnight tonight.

  • ‘Gambler’ remake squanders great cast Dec 24, 2014 6:00 AM
    “If you’re not a genius, don’t bother,” the English professor played by Mark Walhberg in “The Gambler” blithely tells his students. That should be one clue that you’re not gonna like this guy. But there’s a bigger problem: If you’re not doing a genius remake of an old movie, why bother?

  • Jolie goes for broke in ‘Unbroken’ Dec 24, 2014 5:15 AM
    “If you can take it,” Louis Zamperini’s older brother tells him, “you can make it!” This serves as the theme to Angelina Jolie’s new fact-based World War II drama “Unbroken.” Plus, it describes Jolie herself, who proves that a woman other than Kathryn Bigelow can direct a male-dominated military drama in a fiercely male-dominated industry. Jack O’Connell rules as Olympic runner Zamperini.

  • ’Frozen’ is named top entertainer of the year by AP Dec 24, 2014 6:55 AM
    If you have children, or know someone who does, or just listened to one recently, the choice of Associated Press Entertainer of the Year won’t come as much of a shock: It’s “Frozen,” and in 2014, we just couldn’t let it go.

  • Extra security at suburban “Interview” showings Dec 24, 2014 5:10 PM
    People planning to attend a showing of “The Interview” in the suburbs on Christmas should expect an increased police presence at both Hollywood Blvd Theater in Woodridge and the Buffalo Grove Theatres.

  • Select U.S. theaters say they’ll show ‘The Interview’ Thursday Dec 23, 2014 11:56 AM
    Several movie theaters said they will begin showing “The Interview” Thursday, seemingly putting the comedy back in theaters after Sony Pictures Entertainment canceled its release.

  • 'The Interview' dives into geopolitics Dec 23, 2014 4:59 PM
    “The Interview” will go down as the satire that provoked an authoritarian dictatorship, roiled Sony Pictures in a massive hacking attack and prompted new questions of cyber warfare, corporate self-censorship and comedic audacity.

  • Pop-culture moments to remember in 2014 Dec 23, 2014 9:08 AM
    Dancing Groot. A Bowie song in the '50s. An essential Foo Fighters track. The furious finale of "Whiplash." These and more are Sean Stangland's essential pop-culture moments of 2014.

  • Woodridge, Buffalo Grove theaters to show ‘The Interview’ Dec 23, 2014 10:15 PM
    “The Interview” is back on the Christmas Day release schedule, with showings planned at theaters in Woodridge and Buffalo Grove. The controversial comedy was spiked last week by Sony Pictures after the mysterious Internet group called the Guardians of Peace issued threats aimed at theaters playing the movie.

  • North Korean cinema: Kidnappings and evil Americans Dec 22, 2014 6:59 AM
    North Korea hates the currently scrapped Hollywood film that revolves around the assassination of its beloved leader, but the country has had a long love affair with cinema — of its own particular styling. The U.S. blames North Korea for the recent cyberattack on Sony Pictures, which produced “The Interview,” and also for threats of terror attacks against U.S. movie theaters.

  • ‘Into the Woods’ a sanitized but still exuberant journey Dec 22, 2014 4:05 PM
    Rob Marshall’s “Into the Woods” presents an exuberantly engaging, yet awkwardly cleansed cinematic translation of Stephen Sondheim’s lyrically impressive 1987 Broadway musical, based on fairy tales. With a little narrative nip and tuck mandated by the Disney studio, “Into the Woods” dispenses with death and sanitizes seduction to the point that a later song decrying it becomes laughable overkill.

  • Sunday picks: Frozemont welcomes all skaters Dec 21, 2014 7:00 AM
    Step onto the ice at the NHL-sized outdoor Frozemont ice rink at MB Financial Park at Rosemont. Skating is free! The Von Heidecke's Chicago Festival Ballet teams up again with the New Philharmonic Orchestra for performances of the Tchaikovsky seasonal classic “The Nutcracker” at the McAninch Arts Center in Glen Ellyn.

  • Jolie wants ‘Unbroken’ to be tale of hope Dec 21, 2014 7:00 AM
    Angelina Jolie says she took on the challenge of filming “Unbroken,” which has defeated many before her, because she wanted to create a story of hope. The second-time director worked long on the survival story of Olympic and World War II hero Louis Zamperini. “I wanted to learn from Louis and be around this great man, but I wanted to put something out in the world that reminded us all of the strength of the human spirit and brotherhood and faith and all of the things that will, in the end, get us through these dark times,” Jolie said.

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