Barbara VanDenburgh

Barbara VanDenburgh

Agrees with the Tomatometer 82% of the time.

Publications:
Arizona Republic
Total Reviews:
94

Listing Of All Reviews & Articles

Showing 1 - 50 of 94
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Rating T-Meter Title | Year Add Date
3/5 64% Life Of Crime (2014) " Mostly, it's fine. The acting is fine. The writing is fine. The story is fine. There are a few laughs." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 28, 2014
3/5 37% The November Man (2014) " Nothing fresh is being brought to the table, but it's a sufficient bit of fun for anyone who longs for the days of Brosnan's spy swagger." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 26, 2014
4/5 98% A Summer's Tale (2014) " There's a purity to the experience of watching a film so naturalistic, like living in someone else's life for two hours." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 21, 2014
4/5 84% Rich Hill (2014) " There's no judgment or condescension in the film's treatment of its subjects, nor is there any attempt to dissect any societal shortcomings." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 21, 2014
3.5/5 71% Alive Inside (2014) " Equal parts heart-wrenching and heart-lifting ..." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 14, 2014
3/5 61% Hercules (2014) " Give "Hercules" this much: It knows what it is." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 25, 2014
2/5 22% A Long Way Down (2014) " Tackles the topic of life-ending despair with all the delicacy and grace of a Hallmark greeting card." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 17, 2014
1.5/5 18% Sex Tape (2014) " For a movie filled with amateur porn, sex toys, cocaine and Cameron Diaz's butt, "Sex Tape" is awfully tame." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 17, 2014
3.5/5 24% Tammy (2014) " Equal parts funny and heartfelt - but also less than the sum of its parts." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 1, 2014
3.5/5 80% Violette (2014) " Yes, her capacity for such deeply wretched feelings is necessary to her art; the film succeeds at convincing us of that. But it doesn't inspire a lot of sympathy for a woman who is so clearly the author of her own misery." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 26, 2014
2.5/5 25% Think Like a Man Too (2014) " It's the PG-13 version of "The Hangover," and more than anything, that's just boring." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 18, 2014
3/5 89% Obvious Child (2014) " It's a well-written rom-com with rascally charm, a modest story of an awkward Brooklyn girl making a go of life." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 12, 2014
2/5 75% Chinese Puzzle (2014) " The film flits from one subplot to another and not in that delightfully freewheeling European kind of way." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 5, 2014
82% Fed Up (2014) " "Fed Up" gets to feeling like a special nightly news report. But as news reports go, it is an especially thorough and well-produced one, taking an in-depth look at America's worsening obesity epidemic and pointing fingers at culprits" — Arizona Republic
Posted May 15, 2014
88% Chef (2014) " There are enough satisfying flavor notes in "Chef" to make it a tasty repast, even if the film bears too much of a resemblance to the unadventurous menu the food critic pans." — Arizona Republic
Posted May 15, 2014
96% Blue Ruin (2014) " "Blue Ruin" is a movie about revenge, but it reaches far past the bottom-shelf titillations of fantasy to tell a richer, character-driven story with a protagonist who's less avenging angel than ghost." — Arizona Republic
Posted May 1, 2014
3.5/5 58% Dom Hemingway (2014) " Dom is effusive with self-destructive charisma, the kind of loose cannon you'd follow into an all-night bender in spite of your better judgment." — Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 24, 2014
4/5 95% Particle Fever (2014) " Even the most math-averse viewer will be on pins and needs to know the results." — Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 20, 2014
3/5 100% The Only Real Game (2014) " As well-intentioned, feel-good humanitarian acts go, "The Only Real Game" hits one out of the park for fanatics of America's favorite pastime or good-hearted folk with a little extra scratch in search of a new pet project." — Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 6, 2014
2.5/5 69% Visitors (2014) " This is a dialogue-free documentary composed of beautiful black-and-white photography set to an atmospheric Philip Glass score, and it's a patience-straining exercise in narrative asceticism." — Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 27, 2014
1.5/5 29% Pompeii (2014) " One of the most bloodless films to ever kill thousands of people in a fell swoop." — Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 20, 2014
1.5/5 15% Barefoot (2014) " "Barefoot" plays its romance straight and glossy, trying to pass off serious mental illness as a cutesy character quirk that needs only the balm of true love to resolve itself." — Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 20, 2014
3/5 68% About Last Night (2014) " Modern touches and an engaging cast make the recycled material feel fresh enough for a one-night stand at the multiplex." — Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 12, 2014
4.5/5 94% The Past (2013) " Farhadi again burrows deep into his characters to tell an achingly intimate story, spinning grand tragedies out of minor lives in which the past lingers in the air, a perfume that haunts long after its wearer has left the room." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 23, 2014
3/5 59% Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom (2013) " Elba has long been better than the film roles he's been offered, a tradition that continues with his leading role here." — Arizona Republic
Posted Dec 25, 2013
2/5 24% Walking With Dinosaurs (2013) " Unfortunately, there's no majestic visual this movie can't undercut with bathroom humor as the charmless characters chatter simply to fill the space. Not even aurora borealis is spared." — Arizona Republic
Posted Dec 18, 2013
2.5/5 38% Delivery Man (2013) " With its edges sandpapered smooth, the story about an affable loser discovering he has fathered 533 children is rendered ludicrously feel-good and nonsensical." — Arizona Republic
Posted Nov 21, 2013
3.5/5 46% The Book Thief (2013) " If you can't do a thing right, sometimes it's best not to do it at all. Thankfully, "The Book Thief" gets more right than it doesn't." — Arizona Republic
Posted Nov 14, 2013
3/5 65% Great Expectations (2013) " Director Mike Newell approaches the sprawling bildungsroman with a stiff formalism, sacrificing all cinematic excitement for the sake of exalting great performances." — Arizona Republic
Posted Nov 8, 2013
3/5 70% Man of Tai Chi (2013) " Like Reeves' wooden dialogue, it's fun despite not being very good." — Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 31, 2013
4/5 93% Mother Of George (2013) " It's a powerfully sensual movie, gorgeously lensed colors and textures conveying its characters emotional states while thoughtfully exploring the range of human sexuality through Adenike's experience." — Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 17, 2013
1.5/5 29% 2 Jacks (2013) " Mostly, it makes you feel like the only sober person at a party you can't leave." — Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 17, 2013
2/5 27% Sweetwater (2013) " It bludgeons with intent, even dabbling in some "Deadwood"-level verbal shock-and-awe; without wit or intelligence, it's merely baroque affectation playacting at depth." — Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 10, 2013
3/5 61% Bad Milo! (2013) " This movie is about a monster that crawls out of a man's butt and starts killing people." — Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 3, 2013
3.5/5 78% Metallica Through the Never (2013) " The 3-D concert footage is unassailably cool. Less assured is the occasional storyline threaded through the film." — Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 26, 2013
2/5 38% Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013) " All the standard spooks pop up: creepy baby toys, a piano that plays itself, a lady in white roaming the house, predictable jump-scares galore." — Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 12, 2013
3.5/5 73% Populaire (2013) " "Populaire" is catnip for a certain breed of twee Francophile." — Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 12, 2013
4/5 86% The Patience Stone (2013) " The film burns with the collective anger of exiles, unfolding as an indictment of the Islamic customs and religious practices that oppress women in their native countries." — Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 5, 2013
3/5 59% Riddick (2013) " Riddick's at his most fun when the pressure's on, and he retreats to plan something special for his new visitors. All the build-up pays off with tense showdowns in the dark, thrilling restraint and ominous suggestion giving way to slasher gore." — Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 5, 2013
5/5 99% Short Term 12 (2013) " An authentic drama couched in character that never stoops to manipulation." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 29, 2013
2.5/5 42% Closed Circuit (2013) " It's a film that eschews intrigue and insinuation for government agents who monologue about the dangers of free speech and fair trials while garroting their victims." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 28, 2013
2/5 30% Austenland (2013) " The film does little delving into what could make a modern woman so hung up on the romantic conventions of yesteryear, even less with complications of class conflict." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 22, 2013
2/5 5% Paranoia (2013) " "Paranoia" is ostensibly a thriller, but there's nothing remotely thrilling about it. The slick, plodding bore is as exciting as watching somebody else tap out text messages." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 15, 2013
3/5 83% Prince Avalanche (2013) " The movie feels like there wasn't a script. Like Green just handed Rudd and Hirsche two pairs of overalls, a few bottles of grain alcohol and set the cameras rolling as they bromanced it out over a weekend in the woods." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 8, 2013
3.5/5 87% Computer Chess (2013) " It approaches its subjects not with the gleeful, madcap hilarity of a Christopher Guest mockumentary ("Best in Show," "A Mighty Wind"), but with the calculated precision of lines of code." — Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 1, 2013
3/5 52% The To Do List (2013) " The film is flush with done-to-death gross-out gags, bodily fluids serving as too many punch lines. Yes, girls can dish out F-bombs and body objectification as well as the boys can, but that shouldn't be the whole joke." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 25, 2013
1.5/5 13% R.I.P.D. (2013) " It's an unpleasant way to pass a couple summer hours." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 19, 2013
4/5 99% 20 Feet From Stardom (2013) " Music documentarian Morgan Neville uses a mix of live interviews and archival footage to let the singers, and their music, tell their stories of vocal triumph and thwarted ambition." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 4, 2013
3.5/5 64% Unfinished Song (2013) " Terence Stamp and Vanessa Redgrave would be captivating reading the nutrition label on a bag of crisps, so it's no surprise that they elevate "Unfinished Song"..." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 27, 2013
2.5/5 49% Redemption (2013) " "Redemption" doesn't have the chutzpah to let loose and be as dumb as it needs to be, so it instead bores the audience comatose with long stretches of sad-face Statham putzing around an apartment to justify the too-brief bursts of giddy bone-breaking." — Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 27, 2013
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