Jon Niccum

Agrees with the Tomatometer 76% of the time.

Biography:
I am currently a full-time writer and frequent contributor to the Kansas City Star. Prior to that I spent 10 years as Entertainment Editor at the Lawrence Journal-World and seven years as music/film editor at Kansas City's The Pitch. I joined the Kansas City Film Critics Circle in 1994. I was the president of the organization from 2003-2007. I have a degree in film criticism from the University of Kansas.
Favorites:
The Godfather, Shane, 12 Angry Men, Alien, Almost Famous, Taxi Driver, Aguirre, Wrath of God, Run Lola Run, Unforgiven, Once, The Incredibles, The Conversation, Psycho, Blowup
Publications:
County Cable , Kansas City Star , Lawrence Journal-World , Lawrence.com , Pitch.com
Critics' Group:
Kansas City Film Critics Circle
Total Reviews:
908
Total QuickRatings:
472
Location:
Lawrence, KS

Listing Of All Reviews & Articles

Showing 1 - 50 of 908
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Rating T-Meter Title | Year Add Date
3/4 89% Bears (2014) " Whether adventurous Scout is getting his claw stuck in a clam or the fuzzball siblings are riding on the back of their mom as she fords a river, the movie is crammed with memorable images. " — Kansas City Star
Posted Apr 17, 2014
2.5/4 18% Transcendence (2014) " Even when ensconced in a traditional shoot-'em-up, the film still kicks around some heady ideas. If only there were some underlying momentum to energize such poetic, intellectual flourishes. " — Kansas City Star
Posted Apr 17, 2014
2/4 47% Rio 2 (2014) " More characters, more montages, more singing, more dancing, more preaching - it's certainly more exhausting." — Kansas City Star
Posted Apr 10, 2014
3/4 62% Draft Day (2014) " an entertaining mosaic that has more in common with "The Social Network" than "Any Given Sunday."" — Kansas City Star
Posted Apr 10, 2014
3.5/4 89% Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014) " The lack of green-screen laziness makes the red, white and blue workmanship pop out that much more." — Kansas City Star
Posted Apr 3, 2014
2.5/4 22% Sabotage (2014) " This is not wink-wink "Commando"-type violence; this is an immersive, documentary-style barrage of exploding heads, torture, guttings and graphic crime scenes - like a drug cartel home movie." — Kansas City Star
Posted Mar 27, 2014
1.5/4 77% Noah (2014) " It rivals "Battlefield Earth," "Showgirls" and other touchstones of bad modern cinema. But it's the kind of bad that only a mad genius like Aronofsky can muster." — Kansas City Star
Posted Mar 27, 2014
2.5/4 79% Muppets Most Wanted (2014) " Admittedly, "Muppets Most Wanted" doesn't deliver the emotional impact or nostalgic tug of the beloved 2011 reboot. The delights reside in the dippy details, from the absurdist flourishes to the self-referential asides." — Kansas City Star
Posted Mar 20, 2014
2/4 23% Need For Speed (2014) " For a film about racing, it takes a looooong time to locate the finish line." — Kansas City Star
Posted Mar 13, 2014
1.5/4 42% 300: Rise of an Empire (2014) " "Empire" proves that no decapitation can be too slow and no disemboweling too implied." — Kansas City Star
Posted Mar 6, 2014
2.5/4 78% Mr. Peabody & Sherman (2014) " Peabody may be the embodiment of intellect, but it's his sweet soul that comes across strongest in the film." — Kansas City Star
Posted Mar 6, 2014
2.5/4 59% Non-Stop (2014) " Neeson proves crucial at turning the wildly implausible "Non-Stop" into a slick, gripping crowd-pleaser." — Kansas City Star
Posted Feb 28, 2014
2/4 13% Winter's Tale (2014) " Its high production values are in constant competition with its cheeseball special effects." — Kansas City Star
Posted Feb 13, 2014
1.5/4 33% The Monuments Men (2014) " What could have emerged as a highbrow spin on "The Dirty Dozen" is instead turned into a flat, disjointed snoozer. " — Kansas City Star
Posted Feb 6, 2014
3.5/4 96% The Lego Movie (2014) " For a film based on a product tie-in, the filmmakers admirably concoct a movie that never sells out." — Kansas City Star
Posted Feb 6, 2014
2/4 33% Labor Day (2014) " The erratic drama is best enjoyed for its camp value. There are some unintentionally funny moments in the "nobody puts Baby in a corner" league." — Kansas City Star
Posted Jan 30, 2014
2/4 22% Gimme Shelter (2014) " "Gimme Shelter" strives to be a gritty drama about an abused teen struggling to find a better life. But it comes across more as a calculated vehicle for a former teen idol to find better roles." — Kansas City Star
Posted Jan 23, 2014
2/4 11% The Nut Job (2014) " The tonal clangs that thwart "The Nut Job" are exemplified during the screwy end credits. Out of nowhere, an avatar of international pop star Psy emerges and starts dancing alongside the cast to his so-two-years-ago hit "Gangnam Style."" — Kansas City Star
Posted Jan 16, 2014
2/4 18% Ride Along (2014) " You may not remember much about "Ride Along" in a few days. But you won't forget the confident, boisterous Hart. He won't let you." — Kansas City Star
Posted Jan 16, 2014
2/4 64% August: Osage County (2013) " There's hardly a frame in this sour drama where you won't catch Streep "acting." Rolling her eyes. Gesturing wildly. Cackling. She might as well be carrying a shotgun the whole movie to fire after every sentence." — Kansas City Star
Posted Jan 9, 2014
4/4 94% Her (2014) " Like the OS1, the plot of "Her" is always evolving in unpredictable ways." — Kansas City Star
Posted Jan 9, 2014
3.5/4 77% The Wolf of Wall Street (2013) " There's a certain hollowness to Scorsese's rags-to-riches-to-plea-bargaining tales. A hangover quality. It's less noticeable in "Wolf" because of the sheer force of DiCaprio's portrayal." — Kansas City Star
Posted Dec 24, 2013
2.5/4 30% Grudge Match (2013) " "Grudge Match" could have been a cash-grab disaster. Instead, it's sort of respectable." — Kansas City Star
Posted Dec 24, 2013
3.5/4 50% The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (2013) " It provides a simple (maybe simplistic) wake-up call for those dreamers too apprehensive, too comfy, too set in their ways." — Kansas City Star
Posted Dec 24, 2013
3/4 79% Saving Mr. Banks (2013) " The project is well-cast and sharply assembled. But like a lot of recent Disney projects, it's more professional than inspiring." — Kansas City Star
Posted Dec 19, 2013
4/4 95% Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) " It's both fresh and familiar, comedy and tragedy, straightforward narrative and think-piece parable. It's also one of the best films of the year." — Kansas City Star
Posted Dec 19, 2013
1.5/4 75% Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013) " This movie is so lazy it might as well star Adam Sandler." — Kansas City Star
Posted Dec 17, 2013
1.5/4 52% Out of the Furnace (2013) " The film plays like a meandering art-house piece until the seen-it-a-million-times finale, which offers up the kind of primal justice that those yahoos in the audience who haven't already fallen asleep will likely appreciate." — Kansas City Star
Posted Dec 5, 2013
2.5/4 89% Frozen (2013) " "Frozen" has all the allure of a snow globe. It whips up a grand, wintry beauty, but it does little else. And there are dozens of other Disney globes just like it." — Kansas City Star
Posted Nov 26, 2013
3/4 92% Nebraska (2013) " Payne's road movie emphasizes sincerity more than thrills. But its stark beauty and earnest characters provide a memorable excursion." — Kansas City Star
Posted Nov 26, 2013
2/4 42% Oldboy (2013) " Copley gives the year's worst performance. The South African actor portrays "The Stranger" with the kind of showy effete glee usually reserved for mustachioed villains who tie women to train tracks in silent movies." — Kansas City Star
Posted Nov 26, 2013
3/4 94% Dallas Buyers Club (2013) " "Dallas Buyers Club" breaks no new ground, but the AIDS-themed biopic stomps over the old ground quite effectively." — Kansas City Star
Posted Nov 21, 2013
2.5/4 68% The Best Man Holiday (2013) " "The Best Man Holiday" provides the ensemble with enough laughs and commotion to keep this wedding reunion enjoyable, even though a cheese ball third act threatens to annul the entire enterprise." — Kansas City Star
Posted Nov 14, 2013
2.5/4 60% Ender's Game (2013) " incorporates intriguing morality debates into a space adventure about young recruits fighting intergalactic bugs. But it's very serious. Almost joyless. It's like "Starship Troopers" minus the campy humor and wanton nudity." — Kansas City Star
Posted Nov 1, 2013
4/4 97% 12 Years a Slave (2013) " "12 Years a Slave" is essential because its raw impact is unrivaled." — Kansas City Star
Posted Oct 31, 2013
3/4 99% Wadjda (2013) " The spunky Wadjda offers a familiar story in an unfamiliar setting." — Kansas City Star
Posted Oct 31, 2013
3/4 34% The Counselor (2013) " "The Counselor" becomes a rough viewing experience. Challenging, even." — Kansas City Star
Posted Oct 24, 2013
2/4 37% The Fifth Estate (2013) " leans on goofy sight gags, unbridled edits, look-at-me camera moves and pounding techno music to liven up scenes of people typing on laptops." — Kansas City Star
Posted Oct 17, 2013
3.5/4 93% Captain Phillips (2013) " [Hanks] is susceptible to hokiness when handed lesser material such as "The Terminal" and "The Da Vinci Code." Here, he is exactly what he needs to be: credible." — Kansas City Star
Posted Oct 10, 2013
4/4 97% Gravity (2013) " "Gravity" opens with a bravura sequence that is a genuine jaw-dropper. A game-changer. A paradigm of the sheer potency cutting-edge cinema can muster." — Kansas City Star
Posted Oct 3, 2013
3/4 70% Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (2013) " "Cloudy 2" is witty and vibrant, full of strange sights and nifty punch lines. But it also has some cogent things to say about our "enterprising" society that are anything but cloudy." — Kansas City Star
Posted Sep 26, 2013
3.5/4 89% Rush (2013) " These men and their intertwining tales are so compelling that even viewers completely unfamiliar with the sport will get caught up in this slick and stirring drama." — Kansas City Star
Posted Sep 26, 2013
4/4 99% The Wizard of Oz (1939) " Hey, Dorothy actually has freckles in IMAX. Glinda's floating sphere is mesmerizing. The flying monkeys are creepier than ever. The Lollipop Guild even more disturbing - are these guys having a seizure?" — Kansas City Star
Posted Sep 19, 2013
2.5/4 82% Prisoners (2013) " The final third has more in common with three-card monte street hustle than nuanced character drama." — Kansas City Star
Posted Sep 19, 2013
2/4 30% Austenland (2013) " The contemporary cult that's developed around English novelist Jane Austen is plundered for cheap laughs in "Austenland." Unlikely that this phony and often phoned-in romantic comedy will enjoy any cult status of its own." — Kansas City Star
Posted Sep 12, 2013
3/4 89% The World's End (2013) " Hilarious, wistful and eventually bizarre ..." — Kansas City Star
Posted Aug 22, 2013
2.5/4 74% You're Next (2013) " What had been a chaotic free-for-all becomes a butt-kicking crowd-pleaser once the hero surfaces to take charge." — Kansas City Star
Posted Aug 22, 2013
2.5/4 29% Kick-Ass 2 (2013) " Despite its genre-busting origin, this is simply good guys vs. bad guys material. And credit to "Kick-Ass 2," you desperately root for the good guys to win." — Kansas City Star
Posted Aug 15, 2013
2.5/4 68% Elysium (2013) " Despite some terrific action scenes, "Elysium" is held back by its predictable plot, questionable casting and overly glossy presentation. It feels like an enormous missed opportunity." — Kansas City Star
Posted Aug 8, 2013
2.5/4 41% Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters (2013) " This all leads to yet another Hollywood showdown between heroes and a towering digital menace. What once seemed awe-inspiring is now exhaustingly commonplace." — Kansas City Star
Posted Aug 6, 2013
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