Staff Directory 6370568

Chris Hewitt

Critic | Theater
Phone: 612-673-4367

Theater critic Chris Hewitt previously worked at the Pioneer Press in St. Paul, where he covered movies and then theater. Also, he occasionally gets to write book reviews.

Armed with a degree in the lucrative field of history, Chris has written for publications that vary from a small-town newspaper to a city magazine to national sites. He's probably reading a good book right this minute.
Recent content from Chris Hewitt
Marisa B. Tejeda and Becca Hart are “Georgiana & Kitty” in Jungle Theater’s Jane Austen-themed holiday comedy.

Review: 'Georgiana & Kitty' are forward-thinking friends in Jungle Theater comedy

The third holiday show inspired by "Pride and Prejudice" is another winner.
A tour group made their way through the James J. Hill House in 2019. Things will get spookier there this holiday season, with an immersive “A Christ

Go from room to spooky room at 'A Christmas Carol' in James J. Hill House

Charles Dickens' classic will take over the historic St. Paul home for a roving play.
Review: 'A Song of Comfortable Chairs,' by Alexander McCall Smith

Review: 'A Song of Comfortable Chairs,' by Alexander McCall Smith

Books in brief
Actor/director/writer Austene Van gets her holiday on with her new play “Holidate” at Yellow Tree Theatre.

James Brown, friends and shared traditions spark a 'Holidate' at Yellow Tree Theatre

Six questions with writer/director/holiday fan Austene Van.
“Strange World” features the voice of Jake Gyllenhaal in an animated adventure.

Review: Fathers and sons find common ground in 'Strange World'

The animated Disney movie takes a while to get going but nuanced characters save the day.
Jonathan Majors stars as a Navy pilot during the Korean War in fact-based “Devotion.”

Review: 'Devotion' spotlights Jonathan Majors as a Korean War pilot

The fact-based drama is about a Navy man who broke racial barriers.
Michelle Williams plays a version of the mother of the young Stephen Spielberg, called Sammy (Mateo Zoryon Francis-DeFord) in “The Fabelmans.” Gab

Review: Steven Spielberg opens his family album for 'The Fabelmans'

Michelle Williams plays his mom in a movie that's best when it focuses on the title characters.
Taylor Russell and Timothee Chalamet in “Bones and All.”

Review: Love story 'Bones and All' brings new meaning to 'I could eat you up'

Taylor Russell and Timothée Chalamet play lovers who also are cannibals.
Angela Two Stars was photographed by her work “Okciyapi” (meaning “help each other”), installed at the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden in 2021.

Land acknowledgments give thanks to the people who lived here first

Artists stress that organizations must follow words with action.
Carey Mulligan and Zoe Kazan play journalists who helped bring down Harvey Weinstein in “She Said.”

Review: The reporters are the story in compelling 'She Said'

Movie follows the New York Times writers whose work helped bring down Harvey Weinstein.
Fitzwilliam Darcy’s sister Georgiana (Marisa B. Tejeda) and Elizabeth Bennet’s sister Kitty (Becca Hart) are the friends at the center of holiday

Jane Austen's witty characters return in 'Georgiana & Kitty' at Jungle Theater

Final work of "Pride and Prejudice" spinoff trilogy premieres Friday in Minneapolis.
Caroline Innerbichler, most recently seen in the Twin Cities as Anna in the “Frozen” tour, will make her Broadway debut in “Shucked.”

'Frozen' star and Eagan native Caroline Innerbichler to make Broadway debut

She stars in "Shucked," which is slated to open in April 2023.
Women take center stage in “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” including Lupita Nyong’o (left) and Letitia Wright.

Review: 'Black Panther: Wakanda Forever' puts the women in charge

Angela Bassett, Lupita Nyong'o and Letitia Wright fight a new villain who lurks beneath the sea.
Actors Sean Astin and Elijah Wood will appear at Twin Cities Con this weekend.

Half of the Hobbits and more visit Minneapolis for Twin Cities Con

"Lord of the Rings" star Sean Astin discusses the bond he forms with fans at conventions.
Michael Connelly

Review: 'Desert Star,' by Michael Connelly

Don't Miss
Coming-of-age drama “Armageddon Time” stars newcomer Banks Repeta and Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins.

Review: 'Armageddon Time' says coming of age is a tough job

Anne Hathaway, Anthony Hopkins and Banks Repeta star in the autobiographical drama.
Marisa Coughlan in a scene that called for her to drive around Excelsior. The car was on a trailer for filming last week on the set of “Days When th

Filming brings Beau Bridges to town and Marisa Coughlan home

Coughlan's own life inspired "Days When the Rains Came."
Veronica Albee and Nora Montañez in “Carmela Full of Wishes” at Children’s Theatre Company.

Review: 'Carmela Full of Wishes' is filled with dreams and heart

The comedy-drama was adapted from a book by Matt de la Peña.
Sun Mee Chomet (second from left in “Sally & Tom” at the Guthrie) says casts of plays talk about reactions in the audience “all the time.”

When you're watching a play, why the actors are also watching you

Actors talk about the surprising ways audiences respond to dramas and musicals in playhouses.
Gregory Yang and Anna Hashizume get to the bottom of some mysteries in “Fire in the New World.”

Review: 'Fire in the New World' features a femme who's not so fatale

A detective is at the center of the play but his female sidekicks are more compelling.
George Clooney and Julia Roberts reteam in the romantic comedy “Ticket to Paradise.”

Review: 'Ticket to Paradise' coasts on charm of Julia Roberts and George Clooney

It's romantic but not as funny as you might expect.
Gregory Yang and Anna Hashizume in “Fire in the New World.”

Tough talk and Venetian blinds: Film noir meets theater in 'Fire in the New World'

St. Paul play sets a private eye against a ruthless developer.
Disney movies, including “Encanto” (pictured) and “Frozen,” will go the immersive route in an “experience” coming to Minneapolis in March

Disney bringing its 'Immersive Experience' to northeast Minneapolis

Opening in March 2023, it follows in the footsteps of the popular Van Gogh touring exhibit.
Jalyn Hall as Emmett Till and Danielle Deadwyler as his mother, Mamie, in “Till.” which will be screened on the opening night of the Twin Cities F

Twin Cities festival offers Oscar contenders and films made closer to home

Devastating biopic "Till" is the opener.
Cate Blanchett stars as Lydia Tár in director Todd Field’s “Tár.”

Review: Cate Blanchett's blistering performance drives powerful 'Tár'

She's an Oscar contender for playing a ruthless conductor.
Vinecia Coleman stars in the joyous “Weathering” at Penumbra Theatre in St. Paul.

Review: 'Weathering' is a buoyant blast of joy at Penumbra Theatre

Harrison David Rivers' comedy-drama is a world premiere.
Jamie Lee Curtis and Rohan Campbell in “Halloween Ends.”

Review: 'Halloween Ends' with a rousing battle between Michael Myers and Laurie Strode

It's supposedly Jamie Lee Curtis' last "Halloween." We'll see.
Christian Bale, Margot Robbie and John David Washington star in the quirky “Amsterdam.”

'Amsterdam' is a star-filled comedy that loses its way

Christian Bale, Margot Robbie and John David Washington are in the latest puzzler from director David O. Russell.
Leads Neal Beckman and Amanda Mai bring tons of personality to “Once Upon a Mattress” at Old Log Theatre.

Review: Outstanding lead finds a comfy perch in 'Once Upon a Mattress'

Amanda Mai is the best thing about the silly, retro musical.
Dylan Frederick, Becca Hart, Reese Britts and Vie Boheme live life in reverse in the musical “Merrily We Roll Along” at Theater Latte Da.

Review: Dreams are lost and friendships abandoned in thrilling 'Merrily We Roll Along'

The Stephen Sondheim musical, told backward, makes perfect sense at Theater Latté Da.
Luke Macfarlane, left, and Billy Eichner fall in love, maybe, in “Bros.”

Review: 'Bros' is a gay romantic comedy with big, big laughs

Boy meets boy, boy loses boy, boy probably gets boy back.
Buddy Holly (Nick Freeman) plays his final gig in Clear Lake, Iowa, in History Theatre’s version of the jukebox musical “Buddy! The Buddy Holly St

Why audiences continue to fall in love with Buddy Holly's songs

History Theatre returns its music-filled look at the life of the legend.
Viet Vo, Rebecca Hirota and Emjoy Gavino in the Guthrie Theater’s fall opener, “Vietgone,” a love story about war refugees searching for home an

Review: Messy, vibrant 'Vietgone' at the Guthrie is a love story that raps

The Guthrie's season opener is a comedy-drama inspired by creator Qui Nguyen's parents' path to the U.S.
Things are not as sunny as they seem in “Don’t Worry Darling,” with Florence Pugh and Harry Styles.

Review: Lack of thrills in pokey 'Don't Worry Darling' is worrisome

The would-be chiller tackles the not-very-bold theme that conformity is problematic.
Three friends (from left, Reese Britts, Becca Hart and Dylan Frederick) weather happiness and heartache in “Merrily We Roll Along” at Theater Latt

Why 'Merrily We Roll Along,' 'Memento' and others tell stories backward

Reverse timelines offer a fresh perspective in plays, movies and books.
Kaley Cuoco uses a time-traveling machine to relive her dates with Pete Davidson in “Meet Cute.”

What we're watching: 'Meet Cute' gives Kaley Cuoco's comedic skills another chance to take flight

Sheila (Kaley Cuoco) happily submits to participating in a version of "Groundhog Day," reliving the same day over and over so she can perfect a date with nice guy Gary (Pete Davidson).
Neal Beckman (as Prince Dauntless) and Amanda Mai (as Princess Winnifred) rehearse for “Once Upon a Mattress” last week at Old Log Theatre in Exce

Can 'Once Upon a Mattress' lead make audiences forget Carol Burnett?

The "silly" fairy tale musical opens Friday at Old Log Theatre.
Shad Tracy Signs workers install the Edina Theatre sign on Aug. 29 in Edina. The remodeled theater will reopen on Sept. 30.

Edina Theatre returns with nearly $2 million in improvements mixed with the familiar

The movie house reopens Sept. 30 with a bar, better flow in the lobby, reclining seats and bigger screens.
Danielle Deadwyler (as Mamie Till-Mobley) and Whoopi Goldberg (as Alma Carthan) star in “Till.”

13 movies you need to check out this fall

Prestige dramas and superheroes are among our most anticipated titles.
Sam Rockwell and Saoirse Ronan solve a crime in “See How They Run.”

Review: 'See How They Run' is a breezy, clever whodunit

Packed with Agatha Christie references, it involves a murder at "The Mousetrap."
Donald Glover and Zazie Beetz in the fourth and final season of “Atlanta.”

What we're watching: 'Atlanta' opens its final season with even stranger things

The gang may be back in Georgia for these last eight episodes, but they're still traveling in another dimension.
Blanche (Nora Targonski-O’Brien) gradually loses her grip on reality when she visits her sister (Kendall Kent, left) and brother-in-law (Nathan Keep

Review: 'A Streetcar Named Desire' hits the head more than the heart

Yellow Tree Theatre pares the classic to just four characters.
Helen Mirren won the lead actress Oscar for playing Queen Elizabeth II in “The Queen.” On Thursday she said on Instagram: “I am proud to be an E

24 favorite books, movies and songs that depict Queen Elizabeth II

The long life of the monarch inspired dozens of songs, movies, TV shows and books. Our critics cite these favorites.
Eveleth star player Elliot Van Orsdel prepares to do battle in “Hockeyland.”

Review: 'Hockeyland' showcases candid battle of Minnesota hockey titans

Documentary was shot on the Iron Range in 2019-20.
The puppet who longs to be a boy is back in “Pinocchio,” with Tom Hanks as Geppetto.

What we're watching: This is the truth, 'Pinocchio' is good old-fashioned fun

What our critics are watching this week.
Review: 'American Demon,' by Daniel Stashower

Review: 'American Demon,' by Daniel Stashower

Books in brief
Regina Hall and Sterling K. Brown play church leaders caught in a scandal in “Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul.”

Review: 'Honk for Jesus,' brake for good acting from Regina Hall, Sterling K. Brown

Despite fine leads, the satire never jells.
Morfydd Clark as Galadriel in “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.”

'Lord of the Rings' TV series slow to unleash its full power

What our critics are watching this week.
Things get messy when two couples meet in “God of Carnage,” featuring (from left) Peter Christian Hansen, Sara Marsh, Luverne Seifert and Mo Perry

Review: 'God of Carnage' turns cocktails into a nightmarish, comic brawl

Four characters say goodbye to civility in play at St. Paul's Gremlin Theatre.
Minnesota-shot documentary “Hockeyland” is coming to theaters Sept. 9.

Minnesota-shot documentary 'Hockeyland' skates into theaters across the state next month

It was filmed on the Iron Range in 2019 and 2020.
Tilda Swinton is a lonely academic who is granted wishes by the genie Idris Elba in “Three Thousand Years of Longing.”

Review: Tilda Swinton and Idris Elba get mystical in 'Three Thousand Years of Longing'

The latest from "Mad Max" director George Miller is a major change of pace.
Ollie is voiced by Jonathan Groff in “Lost Ollie.”

5 shows to watch: Fans of 'Toy Story' and Tim Burton need to find 'Lost Ollie'

What our critics are watching this week.
Yana Landowne is among the performers who will guide audiences through “Lost & Found” on Raspberry Island in St. Paul. She also co-directed the sh

World premiere play by former Fringe director asks viewers to think, walk and heal

Participants will hear stories and help create a closing ritual at "Lost and Found."
The thrill of “Beast” is watching humans — specifically Idris Elba — get very up close and personal with lions.

Review: An angry lion is the mane event when 'Beast' strands Idris Elba in Africa

The effects are great in this gripping survival tale.
Anne Heche plays a narcissistic, drug-addicted mother in “Gracie’s Choice.”

What we're watching: The great Anne Heche performance you probably don't know about

In 2004, she earned high praise for her role as an unhinged, drug-addicted mother in this Lifetime movie.
The ensemble of “The Magic Flute” includes, from left, Gary Ruschman, Joni Griffith, Rodolfo Nieto, Uchenna Chidozie, Nick Miller and Corissa Boss

Expect glorious music and a bug or two at 'Magic Flute' in gardens and parks

The pop/opera show is traveling around Minnesota for the next month.
Four girls spend one last August together in “Summering,” co-written by Northfield’s Ben Percy.

Review: 'Summering,' co-written by Northfield novelist, captures longing and loss

Homage to "Stand by Me" centers on four girls' dog days of adolescence, bitter truths and a corpse.
Abbi Jacobson in “A League of Their Own.”

What we're watching: 'A League of Their Own' series pitches whole new ballgame

What our critics are watching this week.
Minneapolis native Allyson Fanger and Diane Keaton collaborated on the star’s looks for “Mack & Rita.”

Minnetonka native goes from costuming Jane Fonda to Diane Keaton and Tom Brady

Five-time Emmy nominee Allyson Fanger to visit Edina for an in-store event.
Robert Dorfman, right, directs Pedro Juan Fonseca and Damian Leverett in “Groupthink” for Six Points Theater.

World premiere play asks: Do your job or do the right thing?

St. Paul writer's satire, "Groupthink," isn't autobiographical but it's fair to say he knows the territory.
Ben Percy, the Northfield novelist who co-wrote “Summering,” wanted to feature more girl power in the drama.

Northfield writer's daughter wanted more female heroes. So he made a movie.

Ben Percy co-wrote the coming-of-age movie "Summering" about what four girls do when they find a dead body.
Jake Mierva (from bottom), Joseph McIntyre Godwin and Danylo Loutchko are “3 Guys on Stage Who Get Hit With Hot Dogs, Snow Cones, etc.” at the Min

Review: Fringe Festival offers a cultural smorgasbord of bite-sized shows

Romance sparks between plants, three guys get hit with food and love is tested onstage.
Brad Pitt boards a “Bullet Train” in his new adventure film. A caveat: He may not be as mild-mannered as the bucket hat suggests.

Review: Brad Pitt's goofy charisma highlights gruesome 'Bullet Train'

He plays a killer on a high-speed train, where the passenger list includes lots of other killers.
Viggo Mortensen and Colin Farrell play cave rescuers in gripping “Thirteen Lives.”

Thrilling and inspiring 'Thirteen Lives' is Ron Howard's best movie in years

What our critics are watching this week.
Review: 'The Other Dr. Gilmer,' by Benjamin Gilmer

Review: 'The Other Dr. Gilmer,' by Benjamin Gilmer

Books in brief
B.J. Novak, left, investigates the death of a former flame with the questionable assistance of her brother, Boyd Holbrook, in “Vengeance.”

Review: 'Vengeance' is a podcast-themed thriller that's full of surprises

B.J. Novak's movie writing/directing debut takes us on a gripping ride.
Zoey Deutch is “Not Okay” in a wayward new comedy from Hulu.

Tone is not quite OK in 'Not Okay'

What our critic is watching this week.
Daniel Kaluuya reuinites with “Get Out” writer/director Jordan Peele for the supernatural thriller “Nope.”

Review: 'Nope,' the latest from 'Get Out' and 'Us' director, is a big yes

Daniel Kaluuya and Keke Palmer are ranchers who face an alien intruder in Jordan Peele's new horror movie.
Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans play good killer/bad killer in “The Gray Man.”

What we're watching: Ryan Gosling takes on Chris Evans in 'Gray' battle of killers

What our critics are watching this week.
Dr. Watson (Bruce Roach, left) takes charge of the investigation in “Holmes and Watson,” which also features Daniel Petzold.

Review: Three Sherlocks are at the center of the mystery in 'Holmes and Watson'

Dr. Watson must figure out which of three pretenders is the real detective, and solve a murder.
Anita Ruth, behind the piano, and Tamara Kangas Erickson, right, in rehearsal at Artistry. Photo credit: Maureen Sherman-Mendez

Trailblazing theater artist Anita Ruth hangs up her baton

The music director brought the Twin Cities more than five decades of entertainment.
Cars were spread out at 50 percent capacity for a double feature at the Vali-Hi Drive-in theater in Lake Elmo in 2020.

Could the end be near for Lake Elmo's popular Vali-Hi Drive-In?

Fans of the summer movie venue raise speculations about its closure, but nothing is confirmed.
Lesley Manville falls in love with a couture Dior dress in “Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris.”

Review: 'Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris' in this magical comedy

Oscar nominee Lesley Manville stars as a cleaning woman/fairy godmother.
Daisy Edgar-Jones writes a book, falls in love and gets involved with murder in “Where the Crawdads Sing.”

Review: 'Where the Crawdads Sing' verdict? Book is better than the movie

It's strictly for those who already know the novel and want to see its world depicted.
Marjorie Congdon (center) has been showing up in the audience, as well as on stage, at History Theatre’s “Glensheen.”

Actors aren't the only ones in costume at these Minnesota plays and movies

An accused killer, a princess and a monolith are some of the guises that enthusiastic theatergoers adopt.