It’s truly astounding how mankind is capable of both tremendous greatness and despicable savagery. How can one species lay claim to both? What’s more, how can both traits be found within a single individual? Yet, in a surprisingly large number of instances, that ends up being the case.
One of the great joys of reviewing movies is the opportunity to attend film festivals. They offer moviegoers a chance to see multiple offerings in myriad genres from countries all over the globe, featuring everything from little-known independent productions to Hollywood blockbusters. And so it is with my hometown event, the Chicago International Film Festival, which just recently completed its 55th edition. The Chicago festival just keeps getting better and better every year. I’ve attended many of the festivals over the past 40 years (I started attending when I was 2…), and I’ve seen vast improvements in programming and staging in that time, efforts that have truly made this a world class event. Over 12 days, I screened 15 films, [...]
“Await Further Instructions” (2018). Cast: Sam Gittins, Neerja Naik, Grant Masters, Abigail Cruttenden, Holly Weston, Kris Saddler, David Bradley. Director: Johnny Kevorkian. Screenplay: Gavin Williams. Web site. Facebook Page. We all like to think we’re masters of our own destiny. But are we? It’s really quite astonishing how readily many of us will capitulate when faced with the pressures placed on us by those in positions of authority. So how do we cope? That’s the central question raised in the thrilling new smart horror flick, “Await Further Instructions.” Christmas is supposed to be a festive time of year, full of good times and good cheer, especially in the company of loved ones. As many of us know, however, that’s not [...]
“A Quiet Place” (2018). Cast: Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Millicent Simmonds, Noah Jupe, Cade Woodward, Leon Russom. Director: John Krasinski. Screenplay: Bryan Woods, Scott Beck and John Krasinski. Story: Bryan Woods and Scott Beck. Web site. Trailer. Imagine what it would be like to drastically change how you conduct your life in very fundamental ways. The adjustment could be extremely difficult, especially if you’ve grown accustomed to following certain established practices and procedures. But suppose your life depended on making those now-necessary alterations. Picture that, and you’ve got an idea what a family of everyday folks must do to cope with life in the gripping new science fiction stunner, “A Quiet Place.” With the arrival of a race of vicious [...]