Barbara VanDenburgh

Barbara VanDenburgh

Agrees with the Tomatometer 83% of the time.

Listing Of All Reviews & Articles

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Showing 1 - 50 of 119
Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
4/5 93% Monkey Kingdom (2015) "Although its chief asset is its inherently entertaining subject matter, "Monkey Kingdom" does far more than just let the cameras roll: It teases a compelling drama out of one monkey tribe's complicated social hierarchy ... " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 16, 2015
3/5 77% Alex of Venice (2015) "Although it's enjoyable, actor Chris Messina's directorial debut is somehow less than the sum of its parts, wading only through the shallow end of familiar human conflicts resolved too conveniently to satisfy. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 16, 2015
3/5 29% The Longest Ride (2015) "It's exactly what you'd expect, except executed with more-than-typical competence with the help of a few excellent actors and some gorgeously photographed rodeo scenes that capture the drama and thrill of bull riding. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 9, 2015
3/5 42% Effie Gray (2015) "The film itself begins to feel like Gray, a pretty bird in a gilded cage with nowhere to fly. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 2, 2015
2/5 47% Home (2015) "Lazy gags, and it's been done better elsewhere. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 26, 2015
3.5/5 96% She's Beautiful When She's Angry (2014) "Although much of that archival footage is incredibly familiar after decades of exposure - the burning bras, the clever protest signs, the impassioned speeches, Gloria Steinem - it's the footage of the opposition that really shocks. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 19, 2015
3/5 62% The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2015) "It's asked in the film, "How many new lives can we have?" The answer, it turns, is however many we want. And as long as Dench, Smith, Nighy and Imrie stick around, the same probably is true of "Marigold" movies. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 5, 2015
3/5 56% Focus (2015) "Although it brings nothing new to the con-artist fold, or even anything thrilling, "Focus" is a seductive enough rehash that benefits from the built-in pleasures of the trade. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 26, 2015
2/5 23% White Rabbit (2015) ""White Rabbit" is a deeply unpleasant viewing experience. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 12, 2015
3.5/5 78% The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water (2015) "The plot is straightforward, predictable and slight, no more intricate a plot than a 15-minute TV episode would have. It's the freewheeling madness of its execution that makes the movie such a trip - as in acid trip. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 5, 2015
2/5 37% Black or White (2015) "A movie that's every bit as oversimplified and obvious as its title. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 29, 2015
3/5 63% Still Life (2015) "A soulful if obvious meditation on lives lived unshared, and one man's dedication to righting those wrongs while neglecting his own life. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 22, 2015
3.5/5 98% Paddington (2015) ""Paddington" is a mostly smart update loaded with charm, and it preserves enough of the fuzzy feelings for purists to walk away with a smile. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 15, 2015
4.5/5 99% Selma (2015) "A somber and distressingly relevant tribute to King and his fellow compatriots in the civil-rights movement of the 1960s. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 8, 2015
2/5 46% The Gambler (2014) "The return is as miniscule as the stakes. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Dec 25, 2014
2.5/5 33% Before I Disappear (2014) ""Before I Disappear" wears its big, aching heart on its sleeve with a sincerity so unwavering that it's borderline goofy. And in a film about a burnout bonding with a cute kid, that lack of self-awareness proves critical. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Dec 4, 2014
3/5 71% Penguins Of Madagascar (2014) "All the glossy, kinetic animation and inventive action sequences get lost in the gag machine. The film throws jokes out like a tennis-ball machine on the fritz: gross humor, slapstick pratfalls, bizarre non sequiturs. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Nov 25, 2014
3.5/5 72% Point and Shoot (2014) "Is it bravery or vanity that brings a sheltered Baltimore 20-something halfway across the world to film himself fighting in a war in which he has no perceptible stake? " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Nov 20, 2014
3.5/5 76% Harmontown (2014) "It's in the exploration of how "Community" fandom formed its own distinctive community of outcasts that the film excels, finally making sense of the show's cult popularity by diving into that cult and crowdsurfing on it. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 30, 2014
2/5 11% Meet The Mormons (2014) "Would you go out of your way to see an infomercial that was more than an hour long? Would you even pay for the privilege? That's what "Meet the Mormons" would have filmgoers do. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 9, 2014
2.5/5 38% The Liberator (2014) "How disappointing that a movie about challenging authority should be such a slave to convention. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 2, 2014
3/5 52% The Zero Theorem (2014) "It's bursting with Gilliam's trademark manic energy, but the focus and execution are so soft that that energy ends up derailing the film instead of invigorating it. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 25, 2014
3.5/5 68% God Help the Girl (2014) "It's adorable. It's also very thin. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 18, 2014
3/5 67% Dolphin Tale 2 (2014) "It's worth wading through some sugary-sweet human drama, and the occasional wooden line delivery, for that intimate look at nature. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 11, 2014
3/5 59% May In The Summer (2014) "Ultimately you're left with a drama so contained, it can be neatly wrapped up in single sentences of passed-on wisdom. " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 4, 2014
3/5 65% 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 35% 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 83% 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 73% Alive Inside (2014) "Equal parts heart-wrenching and heart-lifting ... " ‐ Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 14, 2014
3/5 60% 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 17% 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 23% 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 84% 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 23% 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 90% 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
81% 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
86% 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 59% 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 14% 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 93% 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 58% 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
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