IllinoisTimes - Cinemascoping http://illinoistimes.com/blogs.sec-141-1-cinemascoping.html Thu, 02 Oct 14 00:00:00 -0500 en hourly 1 Bland http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14454-bland.html Bland
Being harshly critical of a movie like Charlie Martin Smith’s A Dolphin Tale 2 is akin to kicking a puppy that’s been chewing on your shoes in the teeth.  Yes, corrective measures should b...]]>
"Below" a Cut Above Standard Horror Fare http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14398-below-a-cut-above-standard-horror-fare.html "Below" a Cut Above Standard Horror Fare
On the surface, John Erik Dowdle’s As Above, So Below appears to be a typical horror movie populated with stereotypes stuck in an all-too familiar situation.  However, it quickly becomes appar...]]>
Familiarity Makes http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14395-familiarity-makes.html Familiarity Makes
More times than not, there’s a recurring problem where most faith-based movies are concerned – they’re often less-than subtle in delivering their message, which is ironic because for the most...]]>
Chuck's Classic Movie Picks 8/25 - 8/31 http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14368-chucks-classic-movie-picks-8_25-8_31.html Chuck's Classic Movie Picks 8/25 - 8/31
Classic Pick of the Week - The Magnificent Ambersons  (1942) Orson Welles was more than up to the task of following up Citizen Kane (1941) as he planned to ...]]>
“Stay” a Dismal Example of Modern Storytelling http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14364-%25E2%2580%259Cstay%25E2%2580%259D-a-dismal-example-of-modern-storytelling.html “Stay” a Dismal Example of Modern Storytelling
R.J. Cutler’s If I Stay is pitched squarely to teenage girls, of which I am not, who are susceptible to melodramatic plots and doomed love stories.  Though I fall firmly out of this demograp...]]>
"The Giver" Still a Cut Above Rivals http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14339-the-giver-still-a-cut-above-rivals.html "The Giver" Still a Cut Above Rivals
As the old saying goes, timing is everything and Philip Noyce’s adaptation of Lois Lowry’s novel The Giver is suffering from being a bit too late to the party w...]]>
Chuck's Classic Movie Picks 8/18-8/24 http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14336-chucks-classic-movie-picks-8_18-8_24.html Chuck's Classic Movie Picks 8/18-8/24
  Tuesday – August 19th – One of Clint Eastwood’s most overlooked and underrated films in recent years, Hereafter (2010), airs on FXM at 11:00 pm. Tackling a fractured n...]]>
Hoffman’s Power on Full Display in http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14333-hoffman%25E2%2580%2599s-power-on-full-display-in.html Hoffman’s Power on Full Display in
It’s been a rough year where deaths in the world of film are concerned. While we acknowledge their passing and recognize the inherent misfortune that accompanies these events, we only begin to rec...]]>
"Cops" Familiar but Fun http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14327-cops-familiar-but-fun.html "Cops" Familiar but Fun
 I often tell people where popular movies are concerned – “Keep your expectations low and you might end be pleasantly surprised.”  Such is the case with Let’s be Cops, a goofy b...]]>
"Expendables 3" Too Familiar to Thrill http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14328-expendables-3-too-familiar-to-thrill.html "Expendables 3" Too Familiar to Thrill
 Having now sat through three Expendables movies, I can safely say that this is the most predictable franchise in film history. Nothing, and I mean nothing comes as a surprise in Sylves...]]>
Fey 'What If" an Exercise in Irritation http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14329-fey-what-if-an-exercise-in-irritation.html Fey 'What If" an Exercise in Irritation
 It’s hard for me to put into words just how much Michael Dowse’s What If irritated me.  Not so much like fingernails on a chalkboard, which is thankfully only a brief annoyanc...]]>
Robin Williams (1951-2014) http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14303-robin-williams-%25281951-2014%2529.html Robin Williams (1951-2014)
  Speaking about sharing the stage with Robin Williams at the legendary Improv comedy club in Los Angeles, Richard Pryor said, “There was nothing I could do.  I was up there...]]>
“Into the Storm” Lives Up to its Title http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14298-%25E2%2580%259Cinto-the-storm%25E2%2580%259D-lives-up-to-its-title.html “Into the Storm” Lives Up to its Title
Without question, Steven Quale’s Into the Storm makes its intentions known from the first as the opening scene features four teenagers being killed by a rogue tornado while trapped in a car. More...]]>
“Goes” Beneath its Stars http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14273-%25E2%2580%259Cgoes%25E2%2580%259D-beneath-its-stars.html “Goes” Beneath its Stars
Rob Reiner’s And So It Goes is the sort of movie that, when someone asks you how it was, you’re likely to say, “It was OK.”  Not god-awful and certainly not good, it’s the sor...]]>
“Hercules” a Compelling New Look at Weathered Demigod http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14246-%25E2%2580%259Chercules%25E2%2580%259D-a-compelling-new-look-at-weathered-demigod.html “Hercules” a Compelling New Look at Weathered Demigod
Color me “surprised” in regards to Brett Ratner’s Hercules, an unexpectedly thrilling, smart and at times moving new take on everyone’s favorite demigod.  It goes without saying that th...]]>
Hope on the Horizon for Dismal Summer Movie Season http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14239-hope-on-the-horizon-for-dismal-summer-movie-season.html Hope on the Horizon for Dismal Summer Movie Season
 There’s a great deal of handwringing going on in Hollywood at the moment and it’s your fault.  Yep, the bean-counters in Tinsel Town are worried and wondering why you’re not spending...]]>
Braff’s Cloying Approach Makes “Wish” One to Avoid http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14240-braff%25E2%2580%2599s-cloying-approach-makes-%25E2%2580%259Cwish%25E2%2580%259D-one-to-avoid.html Braff’s Cloying Approach Makes “Wish” One to Avoid
A vanity project if there ever was one, Zach Braff’s Wish You Were Here is far too calculated to take seriously and suffers from a sense of earnestness that’s so overbearing that the film ends u...]]>
Johannson and Intriguing Speculative Science Propel “Lucy” http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14237-johannson-and-intriguing-speculative-science-propel-%25E2%2580%259Clucy%25E2%2580%259D.html Johannson and Intriguing Speculative Science Propel “Lucy”
 What with Marvel Films dragging its feet where making a Black Widow feature is concerned, French filmmaker Luc Besson has taken matters into his own hands and given us Lucy, a star vehicle whos...]]>
James Garner: An Appreciation http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14212-james-garner-an-appreciation.html James Garner: An Appreciation
Movie stars aren’t like you and I. That’s not to say they’re better than us morally and some, believe it or not, are quite normal looking once their make up is taken away and normal lighting is...]]>
“Anarchy” has its Finger on the Pulse of an Angry Nation http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14208-%25E2%2580%259Canarchy%25E2%2580%259D-has-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-an-angry-nation.html “Anarchy” has its Finger on the Pulse of an Angry Nation
There’s a sense of justified rage that propels The Purge: Anarchy, a film that simultaneously serves as a cathartic exercise for its audience as well as a screed against the current state of socie...]]>
Visually Arresting “Dawn” Overstays its Welcome http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14181-visually-arresting-%25E2%2580%259Cdawn%25E2%2580%259D-overstays-its-welcome.html Visually Arresting “Dawn” Overstays its Welcome
 One of the more successful franchise reboots, 2012’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes proved that there was a bit of life left in 40-plus year-old series.  20th Century-Fox knows you can...]]>
Up-and-Coming Performers add Human Touch to “Transformers 4” http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14140-up-and-coming-performers-add-human-touch-to-%25E2%2580%259Ctransformers-4%25E2%2580%259D.html Up-and-Coming Performers add Human Touch to “Transformers 4”
Upon meeting Jack Reynor and Nicola Peltz you can tell that these two young performers are well aware that they’re lucky to be in the position they’re in.  While both these actors only hav...]]>
McCarthy’s Act Wears Thin in “Tammy” http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14141-mccarthy%25E2%2580%2599s-act-wears-thin-in-%25E2%2580%259Ctammy%25E2%2580%259D.html McCarthy’s Act Wears Thin in “Tammy”
Not sure if I am the only one but I’ve gotten tired of Melissa McCarthy’s shtick already.  Though having toiled in film and on television for over the better part of a decade, it seems as ...]]>
Familiarity the Demon “Evil” Can’t Exorcise http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14154-familiarity-the-demon-%25E2%2580%259Cevil%25E2%2580%259D-can%25E2%2580%2599t-exorcise.html Familiarity the Demon “Evil” Can’t Exorcise
The press notes and movie poster for Deliver us from Evil claim the film is “inspired by the actual accounts of a NYPD sergeant.” This is a good piece of information to have because if I didn’t...]]>
Eastwood Takes a Fresh Approach with “Jersey Boys” http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14101-eastwood-takes-a-fresh-approach-with-%25E2%2580%259Cjersey-boys%25E2%2580%259D.html Eastwood Takes a Fresh Approach with “Jersey Boys”
One would think that with over 30 films under his belt as a director that Clint Eastwood would be out of tricks.  And yet, with his big screen adaptation of the Broadway smash Jersey Boys, he n...]]>
“Fault” Avoids Most of its Genre’s Pitfalls http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14059-%25E2%2580%259Cfault%25E2%2580%259D-avoids-most-of-its-genre%25E2%2580%2599s-pitfalls.html “Fault” Avoids Most of its Genre’s Pitfalls
Director Josh Boone had his work cut out for him with having to bring The Fault on Our Stars to the big screen.  Not only did he have a rabid fan base to answer to, but had to navigate the many...]]>
"Maleficent" An Unnecessary Take on an Old Tale http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14046-maleficent-an-unnecessary-take-on-an-old-tale.html "Maleficent" An Unnecessary Take on an Old Tale
Some things are better left alone.  Sometimes, those who wear white hats shouldn’t have them tarnished while those who don the black version shouldn’t have them lightened.  Obviously, ...]]>
MacFarlane Shoots a Million Blanks in "Die" http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14016-macfarlane-shoots-a-million-blanks-in-die.html MacFarlane Shoots a Million Blanks in "Die"
In my mind, I’ve always thought of Seth MacFarlane as the Emperor with New Clothes of comedians.  While millions have embraced his Family Guy television show and hailed him as a comic genius,...]]>
“Chef” Undone by Favreau’s Ego http://illinoistimes.com/blog-14017-%25E2%2580%259Cchef%25E2%2580%259D-undone-by-favreau%25E2%2580%2599s-ego.html “Chef” Undone by Favreau’s Ego
 There’s nothing wrong with Jon Favreau’s Chef that an objective set of eyes and a judicious editor couldn’t fix.  Far too long as well as self-indulgent, this movie is obviously a p...]]>
Soul at the Center of Labyrinthine Days of Future Past http://illinoistimes.com/blog-13986-soul-at-the-center-of-labyrinthine-days-of-future-past.html Soul at the Center of Labyrinthine Days of Future Past
In the Marvel Comics Universe, the X-Men books were always the ones with a social conscience, focusing on issues of alienation and bigotry in whatever forms they may have taken during different phas...]]>