Houston Chronicle

Rating Title | Year Quote Author
1 78%

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008)

"It's not bad, exactly. It's not a desecration of the franchise. It's just . . . tired."

Posted May 22, 2008

Amy Biancolli

2 83%

Planet B-Boy (2007)

"If I could, I would spin on my head to express how much I enjoyed Planet B-Boy."

Posted May 16, 2008

Amy Biancolli

3 73%

Son of Rambow (2007)

"Son of Rambow is an inventive and amusing coming-of-age movie that deftly entwines elements of farce and fantasy, rebelliousness and sentiment, while paying seriously funny tribute to the transcendent power of art."

Posted May 16, 2008

Joe Leydon

4 79%

How The Garcia Girls Spent Their Summer (2008)

"With equal measures of discretion and honesty, Riedel directly addresses the sensuality of all three women, achieving an almost startling sense of intimacy in scenes that range from mesmerizingly intense and gently comical."

Posted May 16, 2008

Joe Leydon

5 67%

The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (2008)

"The struggles remain, but [director] Adamson has tweaked the plot, rejiggered the character dynamics and piled on the epic warfare. By the end I had overdosed on surly Peter, pouty Caspian and over-digitized shock-and-awe."

Posted May 16, 2008

Amy Biancolli

6 39%

Speed Racer (2008)

"It gave me a headache, a stomach ache and the less-defined unease that comes from witnessing a major change in the zeitgeist. Because the zeitgeist, judging from this movie, now embraces rattle-headed visual delirium at all costs."

Posted May 9, 2008

Amy Biancolli

7 93%

Iron Man (2008)

"After 2003's Elf and 2005's Zathura, Favreau has now made three smart, family-friendly, high-concept popcorn movies."

Posted May 1, 2008

Amy Biancolli

8 64%

Baby Mama (2008)

"The funny, felicitous Baby Mama exploits every stage of pregnancy except the first. No hanky-panky to bump this plot in motion."

Posted Apr 25, 2008

Amy Biancolli

9 37%

Where in the World Is Osama Bin Laden? (2008)

"The aim of Spurlock's mission is less a matter of actually finding the man than exploring the everyday beliefs and attitudes of Muslims around the globe."

Posted Apr 18, 2008

Amy Biancolli

10 5%

88 Minutes (2008)

"What a bore. I guessed the identity of the killer from the character's second appearance, and I'm not that smart."

Posted Apr 18, 2008

Amy Biancolli

11 67%

Snow Angels (2007)

"It's well-made. Searingly acted. Potent. And by the time it was over, its climax realized at the water's edge of insanity and grief, I felt beaten about the head with sticks."

Posted Apr 11, 2008

Amy Biancolli

12 50%

Smart People (2008)

"The thorny dialogue, the rancorous arguments, the unexplained surliness of Lawrence's son -- all that nasty stuff melts away, covering up plot weaknesses in a warm glow of nuclear-family bonhomie."

Posted Apr 11, 2008

Amy Biancolli

13 51%

Nim's Island (2008)

"Nim's Island is a pleasant-enough jaunt for a family outing, but it never fully arrives at that 'perfect, secret world.'"

Posted Apr 4, 2008

Amy Biancolli

14 52%

Leatherheads (2008)

"Everyone's too mannered, and most everything's too slow. Especially for a throwback."

Posted Apr 4, 2008

Amy Biancolli

15 65%

Stop-Loss (2008)

"It's more a sweaty assemblage of dramatic high-points than a coherent, persuasive story of wounded warriors trying to make it."

Posted Mar 28, 2008

Amy Biancolli

16 47%

Run Fatboy Run (2007)

"This is not a film with blazingly original ideas or a groundbreaking script - I guessed the ending before the movie even started - but it has a sweet nature, an abundance of laughs and plenty of Pegg to spare."

Posted Mar 28, 2008

Amy Biancolli

17 77%

Paranoid Park (2007)

"Regarding Paranoid Park as an elongated short rather than a feature helps a bit, because it's a miniature in spirit -- a small-format portrait of psychic malaise that just happens to last 84 minutes."

Posted Mar 21, 2008

Amy Biancolli

18 51%

CJ7 (2008)

"For all its mawkish plot turns and indecipherable trippiness, this is not a boring movie. It's just wiggy. And schmaltzy. And Spielbergian. And, uh ... wait. I think I've got a Jujube in my teeth."

Posted Mar 21, 2008

Amy Biancolli

19 25%

Drillbit Taylor (2008)

"Watching kids being forced to pee on each other isn't actually funny. Neither is watching those same kids get chased down by a pair of thugs in a sports car."

Posted Mar 21, 2008

Amy Biancolli

20 94%

The Counterfeiters (2007)

"Is this the last word on the Holocaust? No. But nothing is. And nothing ever should be."

Posted Mar 14, 2008

Amy Biancolli

21 79%

Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears a Who! (2008)

"On the 14th of March, from the Land of L.A., comes a film based on Seuss that I'm happy to say, isn't overblown junk like The Cat in The Hat -- a movie that messed with the book and fell flat."

Posted Mar 14, 2008

Amy Biancolli

22 52%

Funny Games (2008)

"The worst of the violence occurs off-screen, but Funny Games is still a vicious, vicious movie."

Posted Mar 14, 2008

Amy Biancolli

23 77%

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day (2008)

"Working from an unabashedly contrived but splendidly clever script by David Magee and Simon Beaufoy, director Bharat Nalluri keeps the mood light, the pace brisk and the wordplay pleasurable."

Posted Mar 7, 2008

Joe Leydon

24 67%

Honeydripper (2007)

"It survives on its versatile leads, its smoky cinematography (courtesy of Dick Pope) and its seductive musical performances, which run from gospel to jazz to blues to the to the electrifying kick-start of early rock 'n' roll."

Posted Mar 7, 2008

Amy Biancolli

25 92%

Caramel (2008)

"Its chief focus is the bonding between women who rely on each for support, and who really appreciate a place where they can let down their hair."

Posted Mar 7, 2008

Joe Leydon

26 8%

10,000 B.C. (2008)

"The mammoths are cool. The squealing killer ostriches, perhaps inspired by ancient phorusrhacid fossils, are idiotic but... okay, they're idiotic."

Posted Mar 7, 2008

Amy Biancolli

27 42%

The Other Boleyn Girl (2008)

"The film's seduction is all too obvious to ravish anyone."

Posted Feb 29, 2008

Amy Biancolli

28 21%

Semi-Pro (2008)

"It's long on shorts but short on punchlines."

Posted Feb 29, 2008

Amy Biancolli

29 35%

Vantage Point (2008)

"A nice, straightforward, good old-fashioned geopolitical conspiracy thriller with no pretentions."

Posted Feb 22, 2008

Amy Biancolli

30 82%

In Bruges (2008)

"'After I killed him, I dropped the gun in the Thames' -- so begins In Bruges, an insanely clever thug's tale so rife with obscenity that those 11 words form one of the longest complete sentences that can be repeated safely here."

Posted Feb 15, 2008

Amy Biancolli

31 16%

Jumper (2008)

"It's a paradox, but science fiction has to make sense: It can rest on the world's most outlandish premise, but only if its internal logic holds up to scrutiny. And Jumper can't make that leap."

Posted Feb 14, 2008

Amy Biancolli

32 80%

The Spiderwick Chronicles (2008)

"It has plentiful whimsy, a big enough heart and Joan Plowright in one fine scene, burbling magnificently. It treats its archetypes with all due seriousness: Good must engage evil in a final stand. And fatherless children must try to save the world."

Posted Feb 14, 2008

Amy Biancolli

33 58%

Vince Vaughn's Wild West Comedy Show: 30 Days & 30 Nights - Hollywood to the Heartland (2008)

"After a while the movie's inside chumminess and the overgrown-boy schtick start to wear thin, making me wonder whether Sarah Silverman or Margaret Cho might consider filming a sequel with a busload of neurotic girlfriends."

Posted Feb 8, 2008

Amy Biancolli

34 11%

Fool's Gold (2008)

"You might even forget you're watching a movie and think you're having flashbacks to Us Weekly."

Posted Feb 8, 2008

Amy Biancolli

35 15%

Over Her Dead Body (2008)

"An unsurprising entry in that hoary micro-genre of romantic comedies to feature a fresh-from-the-corpse disembodied spirit who just can't seem to get a move-on."

Posted Feb 1, 2008

Amy Biancolli

36 62%

Grace Is Gone (2007)

"Good intentions can only go so far."

Posted Jan 25, 2008

Amy Biancolli

37 96%

Persepolis (2007)

"A film as personal and eccentric as Satrapi's original book, a black-and-white, hand-drawn memoir of growing up and away from Iran."

Posted Jan 25, 2008

Amy Biancolli

38 46%

Cassandra's Dream (2007)

"If Frida Kahlo can paint 55 self-portraits, Woody Allen can make several versions of the same movie. It's only fair."

Posted Jan 18, 2008

Amy Biancolli

39 77%

Cloverfield (2008)

"An efficiently gripping sci-fi/horror romp."

Posted Jan 18, 2008

Amy Biancolli

40 41%

27 Dresses (2008)

"The clichés, like the dresses, sashay in and out of this predictable if nicely fluffy chick-flick composite, which manages to crank out a few decent laughs when it isn't wasting time on a pair of deadly supporting characters."

Posted Jan 18, 2008

Amy Biancolli

41 91%

There Will Be Blood (2007)

"As an incurable romantic, I hold out hope that Anderson's flawed but phenomenal feat here marks the start of a new, mature stage in a long career. He has genius in him. So does the movie -- before its ending."

Posted Jan 11, 2008

Amy Biancolli

42 40%

The Bucket List (2007)

"Not every film about death needs a bald Swede and a game of chess: Sometimes, the sky-diving's enough."

Posted Jan 11, 2008

Amy Biancolli

43 93%

Le Scaphandre et le Papillon (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) (2007)

"A film that haunts and inspires."

Posted Dec 26, 2007

Amy Biancolli

44 89%

O' Horten (2007)

Posted Dec 26, 2007

Amy Biancolli

45 82%

Charlie Wilson's War (2007)

"It is briskly paced, nimbly acted and crisply directed by Mike Nichols."

Posted Dec 21, 2007

Amy Biancolli

46 24%

P.S. I Love You (2007)

"What's on your holiday wishlist? Is there room for a maudlin romantic comedy that brandishes its earnestness like tacky light displays synchronized to Trans-Siberian Orchestra?"

Posted Dec 21, 2007

Bobby Hankinson

47 70%

I Am Legend (2007)

"Lawrence's direction is patient, solid and suspenseful, and his vision of a lone fellow wandering through the atavistic hulk of Manhattan yields an indelible portrait of post-cataclysmic solitude."

Posted Dec 14, 2007

Amy Biancolli

48 72%

Darfur Now (2007)

"The title says Darfur Now -- not Darfur Then, not Darfur Sometime. But the question it asks emphatically is, Darfur Now What?"

Posted Dec 7, 2007

Amy Biancolli

49 83%

Atonement (2007)

"It is mindful art doubling as unapologetic entertainment, an ode to eros and errors assembled with vision and meticulous care."

Posted Dec 7, 2007

Eric Harrison

50 42%

The Golden Compass (2007)

"Weitz's film is short, punchy and efficient, and it's full of engaging spectacle."

Posted Dec 7, 2007

Amy Biancolli

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