Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2023-02-22



Knight at the Movies
by Richard Knight, Jr., for Windy City Times

This article shared 602 times since Wed Jul 13, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Ghostbusters; Wiener-Dog

I ain't afraid of no ( female ) ghosts

The storm of controversy that has broken over the heads of the filmmakers and cast of the remake of Ghostbusters—which opens Friday, July 15—would seem to be the proverbial tempest in a teapot. Having encountered the original in 1984 and on a few occasions since, I haven't quite been able to fathom the depth of the vitriol being flogged at the director of the remake Paul Feig ( Spy, Bridesmaids and TV's Freaks and Geeks ) and others connected with it.

Sure, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis and Bill Murray—who make up the trio of spirit-finders in the movie ( and who are later joined by a fourth, played by Ernie Hudson )—are the essence of comedic ease ( especially Murray ). And, yes, each character is so perfectly shaped to the unique talents of the actor assigned them that it's a nonstop pleasure to watch these funny guys amble through the movie. The supporting parts played by Sigourney Weaver, Rick Moranis and Annie Potts are equally well-cast. The plot—a mixture of comedy, horror and romance—also seems to have something for everyone.

But really, as enjoyable as the movie is, we're not dealing with a classic, right? And even if we were, sooner or later almost every financially successful movie gets remade in one form or another for a new generation of moviegoers. It's that last variation—recasting the male parts with female actors—that has enraged so many internet posters, the majority of them male. The trailer wasn't enough of a laugh riot to silence the doubters and, in fact, seems to have had the opposite effect. The misogyny inherent in all this grousing is impossible to ignore an,d at this late date in our cultural evolution, is frankly disgusting and more than a little bit disappointing and sad.

As for me, I love that Ghostbusters has been reimagined to showcase the insanely funny talents of Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Leslie Jones and out actor Kate McKinnon. Even if the movie is only half good—and it wasn't shown to critics before Windy City Times deadlines—it will be a refreshing change from the usual summer fare filled with testosterone-driven superhero flicks. That's reason enough.

Update: Advance reviews from top critics—male and female—surveyed via Rotten Tomatoes are skewing toward the positive.

Welcome to the doghouse

Ever since writer-director Todd Solondz broke through to audiences in 1995 with the black comedy sensation Welcome to the Dollhouse, I've been waiting for him to do something equally as compelling. The film—the story of an ugly duckling teenage girl whose life is one disappointment after another—captured that elusive something that made Solondz a filmmaker to watch. I have gamely followed him in the ensuing years as his dyspeptic view of life and sour opinion of human behavior have increased tenfold, hoping for another Dollhouse.

Although nothing has ever lived up to his debut, Solondz's unique vision is never less than arresting. Many of his characters and situations are frankly repulsive and the same holds true for Wiener-Dog, his new film. But there's also the patented, absurdist black comedy that is a hallmark of all his movies.

This one follows a series of indignities a dachshund suffers as it's passed from family to family. ( Dog lovers are warned to stay far, far away from the movie ). The typical summing-up of a Solondz film applies to Wiener-Dog, which features a stellar line-up of actors—Julie Delphy, Danny DeVito and Ellyn Burstyn, among them. You either get Solondz or you don't.

The film opens at the Music Box Theatre, 3733 N. Southport Ave., on Friday, July 15. Solondz will be there in person for a Q&A on Saturday, July 16.

Upcoming movie calendar

Highlights from films ( alphabetized by date ) opening in Chicago, July 15 and 22 ( some descriptions come from studio press materials ).

Ghostbusters ( July 15 ): See details above.

Wiener-Dog ( July 15 ): See details above.

Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie ( July 22 ): Patsy and Edina—those two hard-partying London-based "sweetie, sweetie, darlings" who took the world ( and just about every gay bar's TV set ) by storm in the early '90s—are back in this large-screen romp. Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley return as Pats and Eddy, respectively, and the wisecracks, zingers and sight gags are sure to flow faster than the "champers." The plot springs from the accidental drowning by Eddy of supermodel Kate Moss in the Thames. Comic mayhem, no doubt, ensues.

Cafe Society ( July 22 )—Looking for an exciting career, young Bobby Dorfman leaves New York for the glitz and glamour of 1930s Hollywood. After landing a job with his uncle, Bobby falls for Vonnie, a charming woman who happens to be his employer's mistress. Settling for friendship but ultimately heartbroken, Bobby returns to the Bronx and begins working in a nightclub. Everything falls into place when he finds romance with a beautiful socialite, until Vonnie walks back into his life and captures his heart once again. The latest from Woody Allen stars Kristen Stewart, Jesse Eisenberg, Blake Lively, Steve Carell and Corey Stoll.

Equals ( July 22 )—Two Kristen Stewart movies in one week! In this one, Nia ( Kristen Stewart ) and Silas ( played by super-hottie Nicholas Hoult ) begin a forbidden and passionate romance in a futuristic society where emotions have been outlawed, leading them to attempt a dangerous escape.

Star Trek Beyond ( July 22 )—The Star Trek movie franchise reboot returns with a third edition that looks to be pretty darn snazzy. Captain Kirk ( Chris Pine ) and his logical number two, Spock ( out actor Zachary Quinto ), along with the rest of the crew of the SS Enterprise, find themselves facing a deadly alien threat when they are stranded on a hostile planet.

The big news, of course, is that Sulu's character is not only gay but he's got a husband and a child, presumably awaiting back on earth. Although actor/LGBT-rights activist George Takei, the original Sulu, has gone on record that he would have preferred a new character of the queer persuasion, Simon Pegg, who co-wrote the screenplay and returns as crew member Scotty, respectfully disagrees. Either way, I'm now even more psyched to go Trekking. The movie also co-stars the late young actor Anton Yelchin.

The Witness ( July 22 )—You may think that you know the story, until this powerful, multilayered documentary reveals the stories behind the story.

The original story is the emblematic, oft-repeated 1964 incident in which 28-year-old Kitty Genovese, a lesbian, was stabbed to death outside a Queens, New York, apartment building while 38 witnesses sat by and did nothing. There is also the story of Genovese herself, whose life was overshadowed by her death and—central to this film—there is the story of her brother Bill, whose life was profoundly affected by his sister's death and whose obsessive quest for the truth knits together the film's various layers into a compelling narrative.

Looking: The Movie ( July 23 )—The end is here for out writer/director Andrew Haigh's HBO series about a group of gay men in San Francisco—the sweet but commitment-shy Patrick ( the criminally talented gay actor Jonathan Groff ), drug-addled best friend Augustin ( Frankie J. Alvarez ) and Dom ( Murray Bartlett ), the muscular, bearish elder statesman of the trio. Haigh's naturalistic approach—which found critical favor in his sublime gay romantic film Weekend—caught the fancy of many viewers ( this one included ) but bored many more to tears, hence the series cancellation after two seasons. So now, with the film, all the loose ends are going to be wrapped up in this 85-minute film finale.

This article shared 602 times since Wed Jul 13, 2016
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Gay News

SHOWBIZ 'Black Adam,' Cyndi Lauper, Sondheim, Oscars, OutFest 2023-03-18
- Cultured Magazine recently profiled Quintessa Swindell—who became the first out, non-binary actor to play a lead superhero in the DC universe when they portrayed Cyclone in the 2022 movie Black Adam. Swindell grew up in Virginia ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Little Richard, Indigo Girls, Rodriguez's honor, dance film, Pedro Pascal 2023-03-10
Video below - Produced by Bungalow Media + Entertainment for CNN Films and HBO Max, in association with Rolling Stone Films, director Lisa Cortes' Sundance opening-night documentary Little Richard: I Am Everything will debut in theaters and on VOD ...

Gay News

Billy Masters: Raunchier Uncoupled on the rebound with Showtime 2023-03-06
- "I never liked when she did this in concerts either. I don't like when females are overly sexualized in art. It degrades and objectivy's [sic] women in a way that's not healthy." —TJ Jackson on reports ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Wanda Sykes, Jonas Brothers, 'Queen of Versailles,' 'Bloodshed' 2023-03-04
Adam Lambert video below - Award-winning comedian Wanda Sykes' new comedy special, I'm An Entertainer, will premiere globally on Netflix on May 23, a press release announced. The special, directed by Linda Mendoza, was filmed in early February 2023 at Philadelphia's ...

Gay News

Queerties honor LGBTQ+ creatives at Feb. 28 event 2023-03-01
- The 11th Annual Queerties Awards—which recognizes LGBTQ+ creators, tastemakers, storytellers and newsmakers—took place Feb. 28 at Eden Sunset in Los Angeles. Hosted by drag comedian Bianca Del Rio, the ceremony ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ 'Bob's Burgers,' P!nk, sports items, Billy Porter, Ben Platt 2023-02-24
- Animated sitcom Bob's Burgers marked another major milestone with its 250th episode. Gay actor/comedian/musician John Roberts (who voices Linda Belcher) talked with Queerty and said that one of the most important lessons he's learned from ...

Gay News

'Everything' sweeps The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics 14th Dorian Film Awards 2023-02-23
--From a press release - GALECA,The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics, has named A24's fantastical and affecting family relationship drama Everything Everywhere All at Once 2022's Film of the Year—and then some—in its 14th Dorian ...

Gay News

At 'FIRST(ISH)' Sight: Producer Ashley Flowers speaks on 'honest' representation 2023-02-22
- Ashley Flowers—a producer, co-creator and actor in the short film First(ish) Date, now in pre-production—wears many creative hats. She also has an extensive resume working with stage and film props as well; Flowers has been working ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Black queer films, Janet Jackson, Paramore, WNBA, GALECA contest 2023-02-19
- Queerty ran a piece on 10 films that celebrate Black queer love. Some of them include The Skinny (with Jussie Smollett), Dee Rees' movie Pariah, the Oscar-winning Moonlight, the Marlon Riggs classic Tongues Untied, Brother to ...

Gay News

Goran Stolevski grows up fast with Of an Age 2023-02-14
- Openly gay filmmaker Goran Stolevski is a triple threat: He handled directing, writing and editing chores for his new project, Of an Age, which Focus Features is now distributing. The film is already taking home trophies ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Isaac Mizrahi, Viola Davis, Laura Jane Grace, Elton John, GLAAD 2023-02-11
- On Sherri Shepherd's talk show, entertainer/fashion designer Isaac Mizrahi said he'd love for out actor Dan Levy to portray him in a potential biopic based on Mizrahi's memoir, I.M., The Wrap noted. "Dan Levy, OK," Mizrahi ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Jerrod Carmichael, Alan Cumming, Andre Leon Talley, AIDS drama 2023-02-05
- Openly gay stand-up comic and recent Golden Globes host Jerrod Carmichael is set to star in a comedy documentary series for HBO, according to Entertainment Weekly. The yet-untitled series will center on Carmichael's personal life, following ...

Gay News

SHOWBIZ Lil Nas X, Sam Smith, tennis items, Oscars, Queerties 2023-01-29
- Famed children's entertainers The Wiggles sent parents into a frenzy when they posted a photo with out rapper Lil Nas X to their Instagram account and wrote, "New collab in the wind?," according to LGBTQ Nation. ...

Gay News

Director Lukas Dhont's Oscar-nominated drama gets 'Close' to audiences everywhere 2023-01-27
- Belgian director Lukas Dhont's new French-language film Close—a nominee for Best International Feature Film for the 95th Annual Academy Awards—tells the touching story of two 13-year-old best friends, Leo (Eden ...

Gay News

Billy Masters: George Santos gets to be a real drag, and all the dish you need 2023-01-23
- "If you're an enemy of drag, you're an enemy of mine." —George Lopez criticizes Ron DeSantis' "War on Drag Queens." There are some stories I try to stay away from, and that includes George Santos—if I ...


Copyright © 2023 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.






About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam     
Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.