In this day and age of franchise-driven, corporate filmmaking, the Planet of the Apes trilogy, like Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy before it, stands out like a sore thumb, an exception to the rule if you will, an example of what happens when studio bean counters stand to one side and let their creators strut […]

Read More

Sofia Coppola is an acquired taste… which is a nice way of saying that when it comes to her work, I run more cold than hot. Lost in Translation (2003), her best film so far, is a masterpiece of ennui and alienation driven by Bill Murray’s impeccably droll comedic timing and a one-of-a-kind plant-your-flag performance […]

Read More

“Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you,” wrote Friedrich Nietzsche. For Gloria, a New York-based internet writer with a serious alcohol problem in Nacho Vigalondo’s Colossal, that abyss happens […]

Read More

Buried underneath Ang Lee’s and Jean-Christophe Castelli big screen adaptation of Ben Fountain’s novel Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk is a poignant and bitter story about comradeship, patriotic fervor and about how that fervor is exploited. But, alas, Lee’s insistence in shooting this film in 3D, 4K and at 120 frames per second in an […]

Read More

A camouflaged teen emerges from deep inside the Pacific Northwest woods, bow and knife in hand. His target: a deer grazing nearby. Minutes later, the deer is dead after a struggle, and the teen and his five siblings carry their prey back home to be carved, their proud father, Ben Cash (Viggo Mortensen), declaring that […]

Read More

In an article titled “Diseases and Peculiarities of the Negro Race” published in 1851, Mississippi physician Samuel A. Cartwright attributed the African slaves’ desire for freedom to a disease he named drapetomania. He called it a “disease of the mind,” one that could be “almost entirely prevented” by treating the slaves like “children, with care, […]

Read More

Outside of what is written in the Bible or what we are taught in Sunday school (or any faith-based school for that matter) or is preached in church, Jesus’ life is pretty much an open book, one upon which artists as diverse as novelists Nikos Kazantzakis and José Saramago, filmmakers like George Stevens, Martin Scorsese […]

Read More

An outsider can often offer unique insights into a culture or a way of life that is totally foreign to her or him. That outsider can make you see the world you take for granted in a whole new light, even if that light is imbued with the outsider’s own prejudices and misconceptions. Alas, you […]

Read More

A couple of weeks ago, in my review for “The Witch” I lamented the fact that the studios had turned their backs on the good old thriller while the rest of the world was embracing it. To prove my point, here comes South African director Gavin Hood with “Eye in the Sky,” a whopper of […]

Read More

Alejandro González Iñárritu’s (sorry, tocayo, you will always be González Iñárritu to me, and not G. Iñárritu) “The Revenant” is the type of physical, single-minded and ambitiously daring work that used to grace the silver screen before the movies went digital. It brings to mind such equally mad masterworks as Werner Herzog’s “Aguirre: The Wrath […]

Read More

Upcoming Events

Tuesday, June 20 UrbanTheater Company Presents Water & Power Batey Urbano, Chicago
Saturday, July 22 Hiawatha Traditional Music Festival Marquette Touist Park, Marquette MI,
Saturday, July 22 SummerDance-Off: Footwork Hamilton Park Cultural Center, Chicago
Saturday, July 22 Salsa, Mambo, Cha-Cha: Charanga Tropical and Mixed Motion Art Spirit Of Music Garden, Grant Park, Chicago
Thursday, July 27 SummerDance at Humboldt with DJ Agúzate Humboldt Park, Chicago
Saturday, July 29 BANTU FEST Midway Plaisance, Chicago, IL 60637, United States,
Saturday, July 29 Peruvian Festival Chicago Kosciuszko Park, Chicago, Chicago
Saturday, July 29 Pilsen raise up – Big community march Plaza Tenochtitlan, Chicago
Saturday, July 29 Salsa: Gerardo Contino y Los Habaneros and Arthur Murray Dance Spirit Of Music Garden, Grant Park, Chicago
Monday, July 31 Juan Díes: Beyond the Music Mather’s—More Than a Café, Chicago
Tuesday, August 1 Bend it Like Beckham Millennium Park, Chicago
Thursday, August 3 2017 Lollapalooza Lollapalooza, Chicago
Saturday, August 5 Quetzal Art Fest 2017! Sga Youth Family Services, Chicago
Saturday, August 5 50 Years of Verde Luz: Chicago Tribute to El Topo Segundo Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center, Chicago
Sunday, August 6 Slow & Low: Community Lowrider Festival 600 W Cermak Rd, Chicago, IL 60616-1820, United States,
Friday, August 11 Beyond the Music: A Musical Geography of Mexico Waukegan Public Library, Waukegan
Friday, August 11 Festival Cubano 2017 6100 W Fullerton Ave, Chicago, IL 60639-2705, United States,
Friday, August 11 Santana at Ravinia Festival Ravinia Festival, Highland Park
Saturday, August 12 My House Music Festival 2017 18Th St. & Blue Island Ave., Chicago
Monday, August 14 Broadway In Chicago Free Summer Concert Millennium Park, Chicago
Friday, August 18 Kizomba & Bachata: DJ Just Jacob and Latin Street Dancing Spirit Of Music Garden, Grant Park, Chicago