CHICAGO

None Light Moderate Heavy
Language        
Violence        
Sex        
Nudity        

Starring: Catherine Zeta-Jones, Renee
Zellweger, Richard Gere, John
C. Reilly, Queen Latifah, and
Taye Diggs

Genre: Musical

Audience: Older teenagers and
adultsREVIEWER: Lisa A.
RiceCHICAGO is the musical
version of a famous old stage
play about the lives of lady
criminals in the vaudeville
era of the 1920s. Renee
Zellweger plays Roxie Hart,
who has killed her lover in a
jealous rage and now must go
to a forbidding Women's
prison, run by Matron "Mama"
Morton (Queen Latifah). Mama
takes bribes to work "deals"
for the women who want to
sing, dance or act when they
get out (or sometimes in order
to get out!).At first very shy
and reticent, Roxie soon
figures out the ropes and
learns that the
big-lady-on-campus is Velma
Kelly (Catherine Zeta-Jones),
whose famous murder case is
being handled by the notorious
lawyer, Billy Flynn (Richard
Gere). Flynn has nationwide
popularity for his ability to
do a "dog and pony show" to
captivate courts and juries.
Roxie finds a way to persuade
Flynn to take her case, and
her gullible husband, Amos
(John C. Reilly), who sings a
great tune about feeling like
transparent cellophane, finds
a way to pay Flynn the $5,000
he demands. Flynn immediately
begins spin-doctoring Roxie's
case, painting her to be a
chaste, lace-collared,
knitting-loving, innocent
lady, simply misunderstood. As
the story progresses, Roxie
begins learning the system and
how to play newspaper and
radio audiences like a fiddle.
Will it last forever? Or, will
someone discover the
truth?CHICAGO brings audiences
top stars, plenty of top-notch
dancing and singing,
interesting locations,
intriguing historical
glimpses, and colorful sets.
Richard Gere is a surprisingly
talented singer and dancer and
plays a perfect con-artist
lawyer. Catherine Zeta-Jones
is gorgeous and talented, and
Renee Zellweger holds her own,
though Zeta-Jones is
better.CHICAGO is a musical
long on the showy stuff but
short on story. It actually
lasts about fifteen minutes
too long, also. Once the
courtroom story has been
resolved, the movie should be
over, but it continues to draw
out the protagonist's
post-prison activities.The
biggest problem with CHICAGO
is its worldview. The movie
brings these messages:· If
you're clever and sexy, you've
got a great chance to fool the
people and go free;· You
should take revenge if someone
does you wrong;· Any story
can find a different spin, and
the people will believe it;·
Marriage vows are
inconsequential;· It's all
about the show; truth is
relative, at best; and· There
are no real consequences for
evil.CHICAGO honestly feels
like a campy, 1920s version of
the O.J. Simpson trial with
all its televised pomp and its
high-powered lawyers madly
spinning. Like reality,
justice does not prevail in
the end of CHICAGO.All in all,
this movie has a dark, gritty
feel that, with the
almost-exotic dance sequences
and the weak, anti-redemptive
story, is just not worth
wading through the muck to see
the stars perform.Please
address your comments to:Bob
and Harvey
WeinsteinCo-ChairmenMiramax
Films375 Greenwich StreetNew
York, NY 10013Phone: (323)
822-4100 & (212) 941-3800Fax:
(212) 941-3846Website:
www.miramax.com

Rating: PG-13

Runtime: 107 minutes

Distributor: Miramax Films/Buena Vista
(Disney)CONTENT: (PaPa, PC,
Fe, LL, VV, S, N, A, D, MM)
Strong pagan, relativistic
worldview with message that
life is all about appearances,
or "the show," with all forms
of evil and crime acceptable
if one can get away with it
with secondary theme that
portrays almost all the women
as scantily-clad, tough,
rough, selfish, jealous,
murderous, double-crossing,
lying, cheating criminals;
about 16 mostly mild
obscenities and eight
profanities; violence
portrayed, but mostly through
dance sequences; no overt sex
or nudity, but dancers dressed
as scantily-clad hookers
throughout the movie; heavy
alcohol and tobacco use; and,
murder, lying, stealing,
cheating, bribery, betrayal,
rage, disrespect for
authority, lawlessness,
exploitation, selfishness, and
greed.

Director: Rob Marshall

Executive Producer:

Producer: Marty Richards and Harvey
WeinsteinEXECUTIVE PRODUCERS:
Sam Crothers, Neil Meron,
Meryl Poster, Bob Weinstein,
and Craig Zadan

Writer: Bill CondonBASED ON THE PLAY
BY: Maurine Dallas WatkinsALSO
BASED ON THE MUSICAL STAGED
BY: Bob Fosse and Fred Ebb

Address Comments To:

Content:

(PaPa, PC, Fe, LL, VV, S, N, A, D, MM) Strong pagan, relativistic worldview with message that life is all about appearances, or "the show," with all forms of evil and crime acceptable if one can get away with it with secondary theme that portrays almost all the women as scantily-clad, tough, rough, selfish, jealous, murderous, double-crossing, lying, cheating criminals; about 16 mostly mild obscenities and eight profanities; violence portrayed, but mostly through dance sequences; no overt sex or nudity, but dancers dressed as scantily-clad hookers throughout the movie; heavy alcohol and tobacco use; and, murder, lying, stealing, cheating, bribery, betrayal, rage, disrespect for authority, lawlessness, exploitation, selfishness, and greed.

GENRE: Musical Drama

PaPa

PC

Fe

LL

VV

S

A

D

MM

Summary:

CHICAGO is a musical about Roxie Hart, a 1920s vaudeville-era prisoner who must find a way to use the system and get the notorious lawyer Billy Flynn to charm the courts and the entire city on her behalf. With great singing and dancing from a star-studded cast, an otherwise good Broadway remake is fatally hampered by a weak story and a relativistic pagan worldview.

Review:

CHICAGO is the musical version of a famous old stage play about the lives of lady criminals in the vaudeville era of the 1920s. Renee Zellweger plays Roxie Hart, who has killed her lover in a jealous rage and now must go to a forbidding Women's prison, run by Matron "Mama" Morton (Queen Latifah). Mama takes bribes to work "deals" for the women who want to sing, dance or act when they get out (or sometimes in order to get out!).

At first very shy and reticent, Roxie soon figures out the ropes and learns that the big-lady-on-campus is Velma Kelly (Catherine Zeta-Jones), whose famous murder case is being handled by the notorious lawyer, Billy Flynn (Richard Gere). Flynn has nationwide popularity for his ability to do a "dog and pony show" to captivate courts and juries.

Roxie finds a way to persuade Flynn to take her case, and her gullible husband, Amos (John C. Reilly), who sings a great tune about feeling like transparent cellophane, finds a way to pay Flynn the $5,000 he demands. Flynn immediately begins spin-doctoring Roxie's case, painting her to be a chaste, lace-collared, knitting-loving, innocent lady, simply misunderstood.

As the story progresses, Roxie begins learning the system and how to play newspaper and radio audiences like a fiddle. Will it last forever? Or, will someone discover the truth?

CHICAGO brings audiences top stars, plenty of top-notch dancing and singing, interesting locations, intriguing historical glimpses, and colorful sets. Richard Gere is a surprisingly talented singer and dancer and plays a perfect con-artist lawyer. Catherine Zeta-Jones is gorgeous and talented, and Renee Zellweger holds her own, though Zeta-Jones is better.

CHICAGO is a musical long on the showy stuff but short on story. It actually lasts about fifteen minutes too long, also. Once the courtroom story has been resolved, the movie should be over, but it continues to draw out the protagonist's post-prison activities.

The biggest problem with CHICAGO is its worldview. The movie brings these messages:

· If you're clever and sexy, you've got a great chance to fool the people and go free;

· You should take revenge if someone does you wrong;

· Any story can find a different spin, and the people will believe it;

· Marriage vows are inconsequential;

· It's all about the show; truth is relative, at best; and

· There are no real consequences for evil.

CHICAGO honestly feels like a campy, 1920s version of the O.J. Simpson trial with all its televised pomp and its high-powered lawyers madly spinning. Like reality, justice does not prevail in the end of CHICAGO.

All in all, this movie has a dark, gritty feel that, with the almost-exotic dance sequences and the weak, anti-redemptive story, is just not worth wading through the muck to see the stars perform.

Please address your comments to:

Bob and Harvey Weinstein

Co-Chairmen

Miramax Films

375 Greenwich Street

New York, NY 10013

Phone: (323) 822-4100 & (212) 941-3800

Fax: (212) 941-3846

Website: www.miramax.com

SUMMARY: CHICAGO is a musical about Roxie Hart, a 1920s vaudeville-era prisoner who must find a way to use the system and get the notorious lawyer Billy Flynn to charm the courts and the entire city on her behalf. With great singing and dancing from a star-studded cast, an otherwise good Broadway remake is fatally hampered by a weak story and a relativistic pagan worldview.

In Brief: