Latest Theatrical Reviews
Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
A fairly eye-popping futuristic war story with a clever (to a point) structure.
Almost certainly wouldn't have been made were it not for Angelina Jolie, whose extraordinarily striking presence recalls the Old Hollywood potency of Garbo. If only the film around Jolie were worthy of her.
A Million Ways to Die in the West (2014)
Within spitting distance of good...lesser than the sum of its parts due to deficits of ambition, invention and commitment.
Driving Miss Daisy (2014)
This otherwise wispy two-hander-plus-one could easily collapse under a sociopolitical weight it isn't all that interested in lifting...so it's no surprise that the play has returned very much as a star vehicle, with old-pro actors...
X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)
What makes [it] more than just a thrilling science-fiction actioner is the past-present poignancy allowed by time travel and astral projection, indulging everyone's fantasy of telling a younger self what he or she needs to hear.
Purees your brain for two hours...proudly and pointedly credited as 'A Frank Coraci Movie'—not a film, y’hear? Nerd-os, go home!
Palo Alto (2014)
Coppola shows genuine interest in emotional detail, and it accumulates into a depth of real feeling.
All about the riff...it's not easy having less story than a Will Ferrell movie, but
In its broad strokes,
captures the intrigue of the real Dido, subject of a famously captivating portrait that is more fascinating and extraordinary than the film positioned around it.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)
Succeeds in being a largely well-produced comic-book movie extravaganza, but its weighty baggage may leave audiences wishing it had traveled light.
The Other Woman (2014)
If this is girl power, we're experiencing rolling blackouts.
Particle Fever (2014)
Even a science dunce will walk away with a basic understanding of the project and a strong impression of the community around this important research...a film about the idealistic pursuit of knowledge...
A throwback to the fear-mongering science fiction of the past...the lab-bound likes of
The Andromeda Strain
, circa the paranoid '70s.
Draft Day (2014)
This combo of 'inside football' and Capra-corn fable of being one's own man in the face of total opposition...amounts to a corporate training film full of Trump-card koans...
The Raid 2 (2014)
Evans can't compete with more or less obvious influences like
, but he's certainly no slouch in the sadism department, making his films in some ways exhilarating but also wearying, for better and worse.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
never strays far from preposterousness, the picture's real-world implications give its high-flying action at least a tug of gravity.
Bad Words (2014)
Doesn't seem to know what to do with itself once it gets where it's going...And yet, it's hard to throw on the trash heap, because Jason Bateman.
Ma vie en rose (1997)
About the unimaginative struggle to maintain conventional respectability, and the transgender child who is having none of it...
Muppets Most Wanted (2014)
The state of the Muppet union remains strong...self-reference sits comfortably along hip pop-cultural references for the 'rents: stylish parodies and retro musical numbers along with vintage Muppet gags...
The Lunchbox (2014)
The picture belongs to world-class actor Khan. I'll wager right now that there won't be a better performance all year, though it's not the type to win awards.
300: Rise of an Empire (2014)
Both blood-bathetic and deliriously entertaining high camp...will appeal mainly to meatheads, but those with a tolerance for over-the-top violence may appreciate it on other levels.
Tim's Vermeer (2013)
Earns its keep by being informative and briskly entertaining. It helps that the likeably wry Jenison is such an interesting character in his own right, a true Renaissance man...
To look into García's face is to see the movie, a loving character study, in miniature at any moment: Gloria refuses to be your stereotype or a writer's stock character. She's complicated, like you...
The Wind Rises (2013)
As much as it deeply understands the artistic mindset of a driven creator, it also acknowledges the darker implications of a genius' tunnel vision.
A bit like its own villain, Mount Vesuvius: massive, full of hot air, and brainless.
Winter's Tale (2014)
Runs on Judeo-Christian good-versus-evil mythology and the firm belief that love conquers all, especially if you have a magic flying horse. I know that sounds pretty awesome, but...
[Has] a soupçon of military-industrial complexity...Judged on its own merits, this
pump-fakes in some interesting directions without getting to fully explore any of them.
The Monuments Men (2014)
It all feels a bit like an overearnest deleted subplot from someone else's war epic, rather than a confident Clooney picture.
The Lego Movie (2014)
Zany episodes...provide a clothesline on which to hang social satire and an overriding message that an individual's imagination can trump social and cultural oppression. Throw out the instructions, and make what you want of the world. Plus butt jokes.
Labor Day (2013)
A laughably precise, even parodic, archetype of a fantasy male...[and an] offensive stereotype of a female basket case who, more than anything, needs a strong man, preferably a bad-boy hunk with an easy touch for her and a slow hand for a Swiffer.
The Invisible Woman (2013)
Crucially, we stay at the side of the conflicted Nelly, and Jones proves as powerful in nuanced moments of quiet emotional availability as in Nelly's few, stirring allowances to speak truth to male privilege...
The Nut Job (2014)
Like many rodents, the plot runs in circles, covering over and over again the same ground...[Plus,] Psy, who parties like it's 2012.
Lone Survivor (2013)
The unwillingness to 'engage' in larger questions disconcertingly reduces a real-life tragedy to an action movie.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)
Achieves some romantic uplift when Mitty dreams of Cheryl and literally takes flight, but most of the time, the picture strains to make any kind of sense, much less entertain.
The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
Rests comfortably alongside Scorsese's masterpieces
, but carries a sting that even they don't by examining the most acceptable, yet most rapacious, of criminal swindles.
The Past (2013)
With patient sensitivity, Farhadi expertly elicits sympathy, followed by empathy, for each character, almost in turns, to resist misguiding the audience to easy answers.
Captures the zeitgeist of a tech-centric world that may be too 'smart' for its own good...It's about the life of the mind and emotional dysfunction as much as it is a quirky romance, and every scene opens up new questions.
American Hustle (2013)
There's a self-aware feel to the period pageantry, the alternatingly seductive and kinetic cinematography, and the actor's showcase this ramshackle contraption has been held together with spit and bailing wire to be.
Saving Mr. Banks (2013)
By neatly assembling an uplifting weepie out of a few choice lies, it’s almost as pleasant a fantasy as
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013)
Had me at 'Ride Like the Wind.' But by 'Shilo,' I was not so sure.
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