Jim Schembri Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

Jim Schembri

Agrees with the Tomatometer 63% of the time.

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Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
4/5 97% '71 (2015) " Outstanding, tense, nail-biting thriller set in the cauldron of violence and deprivation that was Belfast in 1971...director Yann Demange stages some vivid sequences and knows how to escalate tension to breaking point. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 20, 2015
3/5 61% Run All Night (2015) " With the exception of the first Taken film (which, let's face it, should have been the only Taken film) this taut little Liam Neeson actioner could just be the best shoot'em upper he's done so far. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 20, 2015
3/5 71% Big Eyes (2014) " The stylistic flamboyance we usually associate with director Tim Burton is largely absent from his relatively straight-laced account of the personal and legal war between artist Margaret Keane (Amy Adams) and her husband Walter (Christoph Waltz). " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 20, 2015
3/5 47% Home (2015) " A pastel-coloured visual delight with an emphasis on soft-edges and bubbles, director Tim Johnson (Antz; Over the Hedge) aims the film squarely at kids who won't mind the regular overdoses of touchy-feely cheese. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 20, 2015
2.5/5 31% Insurgent (2015) " Thankfully there's a lot more action in the latest instalment of the Divergent saga, which is great news because it means fewer slow spots during which you can mull over all the holes in both the story and concept of this hyped up teens-vs-adults dross. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 20, 2015
3/5 95% Love Is Strange (2014) " John Lithgow and Alfred Molina shine in a sweet, heartfelt little New York drama playing Ben and George, two gay men who decide to marry after a 39-year live-in arrangement...full of small, telling moments. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 20, 2015
0.5/5 25% Manny Lewis " Absolutely terrible...Unfunny, aimless and largely pointless, you'd be better off listening to five minutes of any Carl Barron routine than submitting yourself to yet another Australian feature film that apparently had no audience in mind. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 20, 2015
1.5/5 88% Top Five (2014) " The time has arrived to finally come out and say that...Chris Rock is a mediocre film director...Given how perceptive, confronting and challenging his stand up work is, it's disappointing to see how tame Rock becomes when he gets behind the camera. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 15, 2015
1/5 72% Inherent Vice (2015) " The title for this film should have been Incoherent Vice, such is the unfunny, meandering, deliberately confusing plot scribble of Paul Thomas Anderson's attempt at a 1970s crime comedy...seems designed to both infuriate and bore. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 15, 2015
3/5 55% Focus (2015) " Enjoyable, disposable, twist-laden fun, the film does suffer from that weird, ironic movie syndrome wherein it works so hard to be unpredictable that it adopts a predictable pattern. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 8, 2015
3/5 67% That Sugar Film " In a sprightly, highly entertaining tear-through of the sugar load embedded in so-called health foods, Melbourne actor Damon Gameau does a Morgan Spurlock by submitting himself to 60 days of increased sugar to match the average of 40 teaspoons a day. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 8, 2015
2.5/5 13% Seventh Son (2015) " Seventh Son is another one of those barely comprehensible 3D fantasy films with lots of dark Middle-earth-type settings and swirls of digital effects that make it hard to figure out precisely what is going on. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 8, 2015
2/5 11% Unfinished Business (2015) " Vince Vaughn's usual motormouth appeal gets stuck in first gear in a muddled, patchy business comedy. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 8, 2015
4/5 90% A Most Violent Year (2015) " Moody, engrossing, exquisitely directed period film...Clearly influenced by old-school directors such as Sidney Lumet and Norman Jewison, JC Chandor proves a master at building a tense, slow-burn atmosphere in a frost-bitten Big Apple. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 8, 2015
3.5/5 63% The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2015) " As far as sequels go this second-go-round for what sounded like a one-shot deal is actually a nice step up from the delights of the first film. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 8, 2015
3.5/5 90% Eastern Boys (2015) " Dour, dark sexual drama about a rich, middle-aged French pervert (Olivier Rabourdin) who arranges for a rent boy to turn up to his plush apartment only to find his plans going awry. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 8, 2015
3/5 36% Project Almanac (2015) " Given how over-used a movie device time-travel has become it's refreshing when anyone manages to give it a new spin...With an obvious nod to the sci-fi verite hit Chronicle, the film is full of wily movie references and some clever touches. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
3/5 25% Jupiter Ascending (2015) " The Wachowski siblings' sprawling, mega-sized, enjoyably loopy space lark. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
3/5 75% Rosewater (2014) " Writer/director Jon Stewart - the recently retired host of The Daily Show - does a solid, proficient job showing the realities of torture and of trying to find the truth in such an oppressed state. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
3/5 98% Citizenfour (2014) " Director Laura Poitras presents a portrait of whistleblower Edward Snowden that is neither demon not saint, though his patriotic motives are clear in that he felt he was uncovering massive abuses of authority. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
3/5 80% WYRMWOOD: Road Of The Dead (2015) " Energetic, blood-splattered, immensely fun Aussie zombie flick...Some nice twists spice up the cascade of cliches, including the idea that zombies can be used as an alternative fuel source for cars. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
3/5 52% The Interview (2014) " Driven by the blustery, swear-happy, cadence-free performances that characterise most Seth Rogen comedies, this reasonably funny lark at least has the distinction of mixing in some light political satire with the usual knockabout fare we've come to expect " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
3.5/5 79% What We Did on Our Holiday " From the makers of the adorable British sitcom Outnumbered comes a lovely, fable-like tragi-comic tale about life, loss, lying and honesty. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
4/5 99% Selma (2015) " As emotionally and racially charged as the film's story is, director Ava DuVernay is determined to deliver a full-bodied, balanced drama that derives its power from the central fight for understanding and respect. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
3/5 25% Fifty Shades of Grey (2015) " Without the baggage of having read the book, the synopsis or even the film's Wikipedia page, Fifty Shades of Grey unspools as a surprisingly engaging story about sexual naivety, concepts of consent and, ultimately, power. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Mar 7, 2015
4.5/5 75% Crash (2004) " Set in a simmering cauldron of racial tensions where subtle nuance can cut as deep as unambiguous hostility, it's a powerful drama about the often bewildering contradictions that underlie human behaviour. " ‐ The Age (Australia)
Posted Feb 23, 2015
4/5 93% No Country for Old Men (2007) " No Country for Old Men is a thoroughly compelling exercise in the cinema of suspense that proves the power of the old-school thriller remains undiminished. " ‐ The Age (Australia)
Posted Feb 22, 2015
2.5/5 46% The Gambler (2014) " Director Rupert Wyatt pulls no punches in vividly portraying the moral gutter gambling addicts can find themselves in, and Mark Wahlberg's boyish face reflects the desperation that keeps him from wising up. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Feb 5, 2015
2.5/5 74% Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015) " Joining the long, long list of James Bond spoofs comes yet one more in the well-dressed, blandly titled, way-too-long form of Kingsman: The Secret Service... Jam your brain into neutral and you should enjoy most of the over-long shenanigans here. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Feb 5, 2015
1.5/5 13% Mortdecai (2015) " A dreadfully flat and unfunny film...It really is painful to watch such a terrific actor as Johnny Depp bland out in such a big way. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 30, 2015
3.5/5 79% The Theory of Everything (2014) " The film is at pains to show what a rebellious genius he was, but it also goes out of its way to show that Hawking was also something of a jerk. If the film is intended as a valentine to Hawking it's a very barbed one. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 30, 2015
3.5/5 89% Still Alice (2015) " It's heart-breaking to watch, made all the more poignant by Julianne Moore's largely subdued, deeply moving performance. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 30, 2015
4/5 88% Foxcatcher (2014) " A compelling, quietly disturbing drama about sport, wealth, lost manhood, mother issues and murder. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 30, 2015
2.5 28% The Wedding Ringer (2015) " A standard, formulaic gross-out bachelor party-type comedy...has a decent amount of laughs for a Friday night in front of the TV with a pizza, but for $20 it's a bit of a stretch. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 22, 2015
3/5 90% Wild (2014) " As a film about self-discovery, Wild doesn't have the beauty, depth or spiritual appeal of Sean Penn's modest masterpiece Into the Wild (2007). Still, it is a gorgeously filmed paean to determination and the ever-elusive goal of self-improvement. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 22, 2015
3.5/5 73% American Sniper (2015) " The film is not, by any fair measure, a battle hymn or a call to arms. As with The Hurt Locker the film's intent is to engender respect for those doing the fighting, not to justify the reasons for the fighting. American Sniper is pro-warrior, not pro-war. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 22, 2015
3/5 77% St. Vincent (2014) " Bill Murray does insouciance so well it's hard to complain, even when watching him go through his well-worn motions yet again in the first half of this enjoyable, if routine, bitter-sweet suburban comedy. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
3.5/5 98% Mr. Turner (2014) " The brilliant Timothy Spall puts in a career-topping lead performance in director Mike Leigh's unhurried, largely plotless, strangely mesmeric portrait of British artist Joseph Turner. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
4/5 83% The Water Diviner (2015) " The moving message of The Water Diviner is humane and, thankfully, not delivered with a hamfist. Given the formidable list of great directors Crowe had worked with, Ron Howard appears to be the one who has had the most influence on his emerging style. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
3/5 50% Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb (2014) " Liked the first two NATM films? Then guess what? Director Shawn Levy and his producers knew better than the mess with a formula that works and so have delivered more of the same...Throwaway fun. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
4/5 89% Big Hero 6 (2014) " This anime-flavoured Disney sci-fi lark is an absolute delight, a near-perfect family entertainment. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
3.5/5 60% The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014) " Visually, the film is 21st century digital filmmaking at its best... Magnificently realised with what appears to be a limitless budget...director Peter Jackson and his team have gone all out with the staging of Middle-earth war. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
3.5/5 28% Annie (2014) " As much as we fear remakes of classic films there are, on occasion, heartening examples where it's done right. Here we have a nicely updated, jazzed-up version of the unfairly maligned 1982 John Huston musical. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
2/5 71% Penguins Of Madagascar (2014) " Stamped out by the Hollywood animation cookie cutter, the film will no doubt please kids but, one dares suggest, adults might find the film's non-stop movement and noise somewhat tiring this time around. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
4/5 89% The Imitation Game (2014) " Deftly directed by Morten Tyldum (Headhunters), the film does a great job building tension as these eggheads bond in a common cause against the Nazis. Yet as a cinematic celebration of the work Turing and his team did, the film is heavily qualified. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
0/5 10% Taken 3 (2015) " If, in the first 20 minutes of this dreck, you can't spot at least three plot holes big enough to drive a monster truck through, then you're probably on the phone. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
3/5 29% Dumb and Dumber To (2014) " The film is almost exactly as funny as the original, and that's some achievement. It might say more about commerce than creativity, but that's comedy in the 21st century for you. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
4/5 71% Into the Woods (2014) " Disney's enthralling, enormously entertaining film version of Stephen Sondheim's 1987 Broadway musical comedy is such a joy it makes you wonder what took them so long...Director Rob Marshall (Chicago) never puts a foot, or a note, wrong. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
3/5 51% Unbroken (2014) " To be frank, as an actress Jolie has disappointed more than she has pleased. Thus, it would be a welcome mid-life shift to see less of her work before the camera and more of her work as a serious filmmaker whose defining trait is clearly compassion. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
4.5/5 93% Birdman (2014) " Michael Keaton is astounding in this brilliantly conjured piece of stream-of-consciousness cinema by Mexican director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu...Prepare to be enthralled, dazzled, delighted and disturbed. " ‐ 3AW
Posted Jan 16, 2015
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