State Journal-Register (Springfield, IL)

Rating Title | Year Quote Author
1 32%

Click (2006)

"It's no bummer or mind-bender, but it might as well be the "Requiem for a Dream" of Adam Sandler's rowdy resume. George Bailey never would have farted in Mr. Potter's face, so it's clearly not a wonderful life. But it's decent enough."

Posted Jun 23, 2006

Nick Rogers

2 40%

Nacho Libre (2006)

"Jared Hess already made the one good movie he had in him. Jack Black needs a director who can save him from character-breaking shtick. The stretchy pants of "Nacho Libre" only go so far before stretchy patience sets in."

Posted Jun 16, 2006

Nick Rogers

3 74%

Cars (2006)

"The voices are great, a handful of puns are funny and the last half-hour is the Pixar movie we've expected to see. But that stalling sound in the opening race of "Cars" is Pixar's first-ever sputtering-out of imagination and immersion."

Posted Jun 9, 2006

Nick Rogers

4 33%

The Break-Up (2006)

"A love-it-or-hate-it mainstream romantic comedy in that makes a frill-free connection with its audience, whether that audience wants it or not. There's nothing wrong with something that delivers belly laughs before striking at gut level."

Posted Jun 2, 2006

Nick Rogers

5 58%

X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)

"Wolverine takes it personally when hit below the belt with a sucker punch. As a paying audience member, so should you. It's a vending-machine movie all the way, with none of the mood, charm or style that has preceded it. "

Posted May 26, 2006

Nick Rogers

6 75%

Over the Hedge (2006)

"High on culture, low on pop, but easily has a bubbling feature-length fizz. Within snappy action sequences and manic comedy, there's a slight screed against the every-square-inch mentality."

Posted May 19, 2006

Nick Rogers

7 70%

Mission: Impossible III (2006)

"Tom Cruise picks plots and directors for "Mission: Impossible" movies the way average folks select shirts or skirts. Finally, he's found a writer and director to put him, and the franchise, through its paces. "

Posted May 12, 2006

Nick Rogers

8 33%

Poseidon (2006)

"Wave hits. Boat flips. Survivors climb. Short movie. Smart move. Good time. None of the problems in this disaster-flick remake nags thanks to an aggressive, get-in-and-get-out intensity."

Posted May 12, 2006

Nick Rogers

9 33%

The Sentinel (2006)

"The AARP version of "24," at least showing us something we haven't seen "24's" hero do before - sleep. It's a pretty good indicator of the excitement and urgency in this stupid snoozer."

Posted Apr 28, 2006

Nick Rogers

10 91%

United 93 (2006)

"United 93 swells with immeasurable heart and hope where it could have been empty or crassly exploitative, and its exhausting, emotionally draining greatness comes from an unadorned story of humanity's personal resolve in one finite moment."

Posted Apr 28, 2006

Nick Rogers

11 86%

Thank You For Smoking (2006)

"Writer-director Jason Reitman doesn't just fire killshots at paper targets. He punches up Christopher Buckley's buckshot prose with invigorating ideas and grounded relationships."

Posted Apr 13, 2006

Nick Rogers

12 57%

Ice Age 2: The Meltdown (2006)

"A blandly voiced, simply plotted, inoffensively average children's film. Every single bit - down to Scrat once again running away with the movie - is exactly like the first."

Posted Mar 30, 2006

Nick Rogers

13 73%

V for Vendetta (2006)

"V for visuals, W for Weaving and S for supporting cast only go so far to rise above the B for belabored points."

Posted Mar 16, 2006

Nick Rogers

14 24%

Failure to Launch (2006)

""Failure to Launch's" unlikable lowlife leads are perfect for each other, considering that if they never met on Earth, they might someday cross paths in hell."

Posted Mar 10, 2006

Nick Rogers

15 40%

Running Scared (2006)

"A spinning-plates movie that only makes a shattered-glass mess in its finale with one twist for each character left standing. Otherwise, this empty-calorie eye-candy cartoon is an ultraviolent, boot-on-throat thiller with style and humor."

Posted Feb 23, 2006

Nick Rogers

16 76%

The Matador (2006)

"Even though it's a little too enamored with its edge and so obviously symbolic it could be called "The Metaphor," Brosnan is at his best, and the movie's got more on its mind than guns, giggles and a weenie-meets-warrior vibe."

Posted Feb 16, 2006

Nick Rogers

17 72%

Eight Below (2006)

"An emotionally gripping survival story with jaw-dropping cinematography, a straightforward sense of Antarctic danger and, brace yourself, good work from Paul Walker."

Posted Feb 16, 2006

Nick Rogers

18 19%

Firewall (2006)

"There are tense moments early on, and Bettany makes a convincing, sleek sociopath, but the movie's compromised by a dumbed-down script, ludicrous plot twists and a howler of a finale."

Posted Feb 10, 2006

Nick Rogers

19 90%

Capote (2005)

"A powerful, unsympathetic, no-frills portrayal of how steady moral decay corroded Capote's powers of expression."

Posted Feb 10, 2006

Nick Rogers

20 62%

The New World (2005)

"Kilcher is great, and the film's beautiful. But after the first five shots of still water disrupted by boots or boats, we get Malick's point. By film's end, it's as untethered from its rapturous beginning as its lovers are from their cultures."

Posted Jan 23, 2006

Nick Rogers

21 87%

Brokeback Mountain (2005)

"One of the all-time greatest love stories, its potent poignancy comes from universally relatable ideas like nagging love, lost dreams, a half-lived life and comfort in knowing incomplete joy is better than none at all. "

Posted Jan 12, 2006

Nick Rogers

22 55%

Glory Road (2006)

"The movie tries to push every button and please everyone involved, and its expressway of good intentions is little more than just a patchy re-paving job"

Posted Jan 12, 2006

Nick Rogers

23 78%

Munich (2005)

"Featuring compelling characters who converse through casualties, Spielberg's well-paced, stylish and admirably overambitious movie never fully verbalizes its story."

Posted Jan 6, 2006

Nick Rogers

24 51%

The Producers (2005)

"A painted-pink pipe bomb of broad stereotypes that explodes with some big laughs, but takes no risks."

Posted Dec 28, 2005

Nick Rogers

25 84%

King Kong (2005)

"Take out much of the middle hour, with all its digital clutter and "Smackdown"-style card of creature villains, and what is majestic entertainment could've been an all-time great."

Posted Dec 28, 2005

Nick Rogers

26 76%

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (2005)

"Hoping for franchise success by visual association with other movies, no matter how great the mimicry, steals too much heart and spirit from this beloved children's classic."

Posted Dec 8, 2005

Nick Rogers

27 88%

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

"The greatest magic of this book - and this film - is that it doesn't pretend that growing up won't change everything. It's the first Potter film where reality and fantasy are equally fascinating."

Posted Nov 17, 2005

Nick Rogers

28 82%

Walk the Line (2005)

"The movie pays homage to musical giants by portraying them as anything but. It's more about searching for the man in the Man in Black and the June in June Carter."

Posted Nov 17, 2005

Nick Rogers

29 16%

Get Rich or Die Tryin' (2005)

"For a rapper who's all about branding, 50 Cent should consider this: His excellent breakthrough record now shares a name with his middling movie."

Posted Nov 11, 2005

Nick Rogers

30 75%

Zathura (2005)

"One of the best live-action family films of the year because it understands that its wowing sights would be just as enjoyable acted out by an imaginative child. "

Posted Nov 11, 2005

Nick Rogers

31 26%

The Legend of Zorro (2005)

"Original-haters with phenomenally low expectations will find a decent family action movie that, while still obnoxiously long, features more of the right kind of silly thrills."

Posted Oct 27, 2005

Nick Rogers

32 36%

Saw II (2005)

"In the interest of the film's themes of absolution, here's a free pass to the half-hearted original for giving way to this subversive brain-jiggler with perfect plot creases."

Posted Oct 27, 2005

Nick Rogers

33 19%

Doom (2005)

"A mostly standard-issue Marine fetish festival and also a regressive role for the Rock. He should never have to drop an F-bomb once, let alone 15 times, to seem tough."

Posted Oct 20, 2005

Nick Rogers

34 19%

Domino (2005)

"A damaging cinematic concussion that's visually and mentally exhausting - borderline punishing - for no reason. It advertises ambition and peddles confusion and incoherence."

Posted Oct 13, 2005

Nick Rogers

35 75%

In Her Shoes (2005)

"Curtis Hanson and Susannah Grant aren't afraid to let the material's scarred-over wounds open wide, so it's not shameful when they ask tear ducts to do the same thing"

Posted Oct 6, 2005

Nick Rogers

36 87%

A History of Violence (2005)

"Stripped of Cronenberg cartoonishness, it explosively fires into the heart of his sex-and-violence favorites, as well as reality and perception."

Posted Sep 29, 2005

Nick Rogers

37 83%

Tim Burton's Corpse Bride (2005)

"The film probably won't spawn a cottage industry at Hot Topic, but its angst-ridden story of love - romantic and platonic - is likely to resonate stronger with shoppers. "

Posted Sep 22, 2005

Nick Rogers

38 56%

Just Like Heaven (2005)

"The wildly disjointed movie somehow finds an inoffensive, so-so groove. Despite some original strokes and funny gags, it takes many what-if answers from other, better titles."

Posted Sep 15, 2005

Nick Rogers

39 45%

The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005)

"It wants to combine John Grisham's legalese with Dean R. Koontz's faith-oriented spooks. But any pulpy jolts have been expelled from the body of this retro-horror wannabe."

Posted Sep 8, 2005

Nick Rogers

40 84%

The Constant Gardener (2005)

"Patience pays off in this immensely satisfying, rapturously urgent thriller-romance. Fernando Meirelles breaks from traditional trappings for one of the year's best movies."

Posted Sep 1, 2005

Nick Rogers

41 31%

Valiant (2005)

"Very short and very slight, Valiant still carries a dainty, retro charm amid heavy technology. A fine effort with a sweet message kids will be happy to hear only once."

Posted Aug 19, 2005

Nick Rogers

42 79%

Red Eye (2005)

"Who knows if Craven's back on track, but for the first time in years, he's drawn shivers from the power of story and suggestion, not the awfulness of his movies. "

Posted Aug 19, 2005

Nick Rogers

43 13%

The Dukes of Hazzard (2005)

"The Balladeer always sang that the mountain might get the Duke boys someday. With this movie, they crash the General Lee into it and explode. "

Posted Aug 4, 2005

Nick Rogers

44 73%

Sky High (2005)

"A lighthearted, albeit sanitized, teen movie that marries 1960s kitsch to 1980s angst with sharp one-liners, sight gags and a lunatic-fringe supporting cast of comedians."

Posted Jul 28, 2005

Nick Rogers

45 75%

Wedding Crashers (2005)

"Going against the hype, Wedding Crashers wisely favors sophistication over shock value. How you feel about that depends on the open-mindedness of your own inner child."

Posted Jul 28, 2005

Nick Rogers

46 27%

Fantastic Four (2005)

"Fantastic Four isn't even close to Sin City, Batman Begins or even Constantine, but it's a relatively quick, vibrant, focused origin story. "

Posted Jul 7, 2005

Nick Rogers

47 74%

War of the Worlds (2005)

"Pitched at a level of interpersonal experience amid the mayhem, this blockbuster offers no sense of loss. Given its ending, you'd think the power had been out for a few days."

Posted Jun 30, 2005

Nick Rogers

48 74%

Land of the Dead (2005)

"Apart from the sunshiny ending, brains are all over the place in both respects in Land of the Dead, a fine example of hard-R genre fun. "

Posted Jun 23, 2005

Nick Rogers

49 41%

Herbie: Fully Loaded (2005)

"Nothing here beats the old-school sight of a halved Bug placing first and third in a race. A snippet of that scene is more exciting than any of Herbie's newfound trickery."

Posted Jun 23, 2005

Nick Rogers

50 85%

Batman Begins (2005)

"Accessible smarts, rousing action, one of the year's finest acting ensembles. This great film proves entertainment with a brain as big as its budget isn't dead this summer."

Posted Jun 16, 2005

Nick Rogers

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