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Interview, Audio: Michael Stuhlbarg in ‘Call Me By Your Name’

16 December 2017 8:20 AM, PST

Chicago – The character actor Michael Stuhlbarg is one of the more complete players in today’s show business. His embrace of a role is absolute, and his characters ring with a particular poetry based on his interpretations. His latest role is of an academic and father in the new film, “Call Me By Your Name.”

“Call Me…” is a sensitive and authentic literary adaptation that tells of summer romance between an older grad student (Armie Hammer) – under the tutelage of Professor Perlman (Stuhlbarg) – and the professor’s curious son Elio (Timothée Chalamet). Stuhlbarg’s role is one of commentator throughout the film, until a climatic monologue that assures his son that whatever is right for him is right for everybody. The film is a emotional alternative to the holiday blockbuster.

Michael Stuhlbarg as Professor Perlman in “Call Me By My Name”

Photo credit: Sony Pictures Classics

Michael Stuhlbarg was born in Long Beach, »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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Podtalk: Liliane Calfee of DePaul University Presents ‘Step’ on Dec. 16, 2017

14 December 2017 9:23 AM, PST

Chicago – Within the expanding DePaul University School of Cinematic Arts is a commitment to community outreach. Liliane Calfee is an Instructor in the school, as well as the Program Director of the Cha (Chicago Housing Authority) Program in Documentary Filmmaking, a course which gives female youth from public housing the opportunity to learn the nuts-and-bolts of the documentary art form from DePaul academic experts. This program, along with film community leader Chaz Ebert, will present the 2017 documentary “Step” on Saturday, December 17th, 2017, at the Cdm Theatre on the South Loop campus.

The Cha Program in Documentary Filmmaking became the impetus for this special screening of “Step,” which also was aided by Chaz Ebert and her support of the program. Ms. Ebert shared her views and experiences with the program participants during the 5-week course this summer, and became interested in continuing her mentorship with the DePaul/Cha partnership. All factors »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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Film Review: Ethereal ‘The Shape of Water’ Forms Cinema Magic

13 December 2017 11:48 AM, PST

Chicago – This breathtaking morality and love story, set in a backward age, takes all of its major themes – passion, tolerance, symbolism and thrills – to the highest level. Writer/director Guillermo del Toro has created a masterwork that is part fairy tale, part adult desperation and all cinema magic.

Rating: 5.0/5.0

The fairy tale involves a mute janitor, portrayed with mystery by Sally Hawkins, falling in love with a U.S. government prisoner in 1962, who happens to resemble the Creature from the Black Lagoon. The film is also a heart warming tribute to the movies themselves, as two of the main characters share that passion – even living above a movie theater – and who escape their daily grind at the altar of the late show. The movie expresses its era precisely, with misfit characters symbolically standing in at times for the actual prisoner in chains, and they all break free through the energy of love. »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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Film News: Chicago Film Critics Association Honors ‘Lady Bird’ as 2017 Best Film

13 December 2017 10:11 AM, PST

Chicago – “Lady Bird,” which is the sensational, authentic and emotional directorial debut of actor Greta Gerwig, was honored as the Best Picture of 2017 as determined by the Chicago Film Critics Association (Cfca) on Dec. 12, 2017. The Best Director was split to Christopher Nolan of “Dunkirk,” the Best Actor was Timothée Chalamet of “Call Me By Your Name” (who also was awarded Most Promising Performer) and the Best Actress was Saoirse Ronan of “Lady Bird.”

Greta Gerwig also took home the Most Promising Filmmaker honor for 2017, and “Lady Bird” led the pack with four awards, followed by three for “Call Me By Your Name” and two for “Blade Runner 2019” among the multiple winners. The dinner was highlighted by a speech by Dann Gire, President of the Cfca, and the announcement of the upcoming Chicago Critics Film Festival at the Music Box Theatre in Chicago from May 4th through 10th, 2018.

Saoirse Ronan in ‘Lady Bird, »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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Film Review: ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ Turns Up the Volume

12 December 2017 2:50 PM, PST

Chicago – Everything that could be thrown into the Stars Wars legend – and the official story – is present in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” With three concurrent stories converging into an amped-up climax, all manner of Star Wars-mania and fan satisfaction can be realized in Episode 8.

Rating: 3.5/5.0

Taking over for Episode 7 director J.J. Abrams is Rian Johnson (“Brick,” “The Brothers Bloom”), a more independent and offbeat helmsman. He obviously wanted to establish his own heartbeat in the series and did it by the balancing act of the complex stories (he also wrote the script), that all erupted over each other to effectively emerge together at the conclusion. It is an epic tale, much like the audacity of a seafaring novel written in the 19th Century, with conflict and emotion that have a bearing on both the older and new characters in the canon. This is not your Daddy’s Star Wars, »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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Film News: ‘Call Me By Your Name’ Tops Chicago Film Critics Association’s Nominations for 2017

11 December 2017 9:38 AM, PST

Chicago – The eclectic coming-of-age love story, “Call Me By Your Name” topped the nominations list with eight for the 2017 Chicago Film Critics Association (Cfca) Film Awards, to be announced on Wednesday, December 13th. Director Luca Guadagnino’s adaptation of Andre Aciman’s novel garnered nods for Best Picture, Guadagnino for Best Director, and acting noms for Armie Hammer, Michael Stuhlbarg and Timothee Chalamet.

The rest of the field for Best Picture has a variety of genres and themes. Christopher Nolan’s epic “Dunkirk” shares the stage with Greta Gerwig’s intent autobiographical “Lady Bird,” Guillermo Del Toro’s magical “The Shape of Water” and the strange-but-heralded “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” The symbolic horror of “Get Out” got first time director Jordan Peele a nomination (joining first timer Greta Gerwig), the late Harry Dean Stanton was recognized for Best Actor in “Lucky,” and Willem Dafoe got a Best Supporting Actor nomination for “The Florida Project. »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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