Critics' Corner

Critics' Corner

Dance For Life

Genius. There are not enough accolades… Nothing short of stunning… beautiful… spectacular.”  

 “HMS may very well possess the greatest gifts for filming dance of anyone around... (They are) masters at work (with) a fabulous understanding of how to film dance in a way that makes it a totally visceral experience… a thrilling work… absolutely ravishing.” 
Chicago Sun-Times

 “Profound… a stirring, deftly shot celebration… beautiful, illuminating, insightful and uplifting… artful and stunning… HMS are among the top dance documentary filmmakers in America.” 
Chicago Tribune

First You Dream: The Music of Kander & Ebb

 “The equation couldn't be simpler: a suave songbook plus the right singers equal bang-up entertainment.” — The Washington Post

 “Not only will it enchant audiences, it should be required viewing.” — Variety

A Christmas Carol: The Concert

Glorious… a stellar dramatic concert (that) gains immeasurably from artful camera work which seamlessly and thrillingly moves from actors, to conductor and musicians, to the glowing, deeply immersed faces of the multi-generational audience.”  
Chicago Sun-Times

 “Offers a new take on a timeless story, blending the sweep of symphonic performance with dramatic musical theatre and the visual delights of dazzling TV.”  
The Huffington Post

 “A Christmas present that deserves many a Christmas-Yet-to-Come.”  
Think TV

Steppenwolf Theatre Company: 25 Years On The Edge

 “Takes a simple approach to complex and insightful ends... It’s not an easy thing for such a film to cut through the pomp and circumstance to get to the substance beneath, but HMS Media pulls it off. Steppenwolf benefits from that. So does the viewer.”
The Daily Herald

Second To None

A documentary about The Second City ought to be, first and foremost, funny, and Second To None meets the test... it captures on video a very elusive thing: the birth and growth of comedy... artful… with skillful editing and what seems a dogged pursuit of the subject... it is fascinating throughout.”  
Chicago Tribune

Astonishing… Fascinating as a peek into the workings of comic minds… There’s poignancy, too.”  
Chicago Sun-Times

 “(This is) The Second City process caught for the first time, and a hell of a lot of lightning has been caught in a bottle.”  
American Theater 

The Chicago Dance Project

 “Valuable, effective and, best of all, whimsical and fresh arts television… aims a dust mop at public television's venerable but sometimes cobwebbed approach to dance programming… beautifully designed to show off the variety, to focus on individual talents and, in scene after scene, excerpt after excerpt, to explore the flesh-and-blood beauty and passion of a visceral, accessible art.”  
Chicago Tribune

 “Expertly shot and invaluable in helping spread the gospel of dance.”
Chicago Sun-Times

 “The most thorough and important documentation of Chicago dance ever done.”
WBEZ/NPR Chicago

Jump Rhythm Jazz Project: Getting There

"Highly enjoyable... thoughtfully shot... amply demonstrates the troupe's mix of effervescent material and sly, backhanded commentary... Fred Astaire and the Nicholas Brothers are smiling." 
Chicago Tribune

 “Gives the viewer a unique look inside creative inspiration. Both strangers to the company and longtime fans will be surprised and delighted."  
Windy City Times

Every Dancer Has A Story

 “One of the best dance films to arrive on television since the fabled PBS ‘Dance in America’... Gorgeously composed…superb camera work… brilliantly edited… gives a whole new appreciation for this hugely demanding art form… TV audiences (will be) racing to the box office for tickets.”
Chicago Sun-Times

 “Breezy and beguiling… sneaks up on you and touches on critical insights… HMS has mastered the tricky elusive art of dance photography, capturing both choreographic design and intimacy… sways true believer and skeptic alike.”  
Chicago Tribune

  “Striking, raw and real.”
Chicago Reader

 “This is special stuff.  Beautifully produced… substantial and sensitive. The company looks gorgeous throughout.”
Time Out Chicago

Just Passing Through

 “You don’t have to be a fan of singer/songwriters Shawn Colvin, Julia Fordham and October Project to enjoy this nifty documentary... through a combination of deft editing, intelligent questioning and wise subject choice, the filmmakers present a rich and revealing portrait... it’s a vibrant portrait of the artists’ offstage life that almost anybody who’s attended a concert has wondered about.”
Chicago Tribune

Through The Night

 “A multiple-personality live wire that keeps the audience spellbound… seamless… brilliant.” —The Jewish Times

Uncanny… a fast-changing, often comic emotional collage… Beaty is a moving and eloquent performer, fully convinced of the power of theater to heal hearts and change lives.” — The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Beaty ties it all together beautifully… you might be surprised at how deep it is as it successfully tackles religion, parental and personal responsibility, self-esteem and relationships… well worth your time.” — The Southern Voice

A positive message of hope, driving it home not with preaching but with powerful suggestion.” — Winston Salem Journal

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago: Always In Motion

 Exceptionally revealing... filmed with exemplary musicality... with skillful direction, the program’s rehearsal and studio performance sequences have been sensitively filmed.”
Chicago Sun-Times

Why Am I Hiding?

 “This is a powerful, thought-provoking and informative documentary.”
Chicago Tribune

“A hard-hitting documentary.”  
Chicago Sun-Times