Palo Alto Weekly

Rating Title | Year Quote Author
1 50%

White House Down (2013)

"While fun in a harmless, artificial sort of way -- like Pop Rocks or costume jewelry -- White House Down is little more than Die Hard at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave."

Posted Dec 13, 2013

Tyler Hanley

2 74%

The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (2013)

"Smaug ignites the excitement missing from Jackson's sluggish first Hobbit flick, and the stunning visuals -- cinematography, costuming, set design, effects -- set it apart as one of the most impressive fantasy films ever made."

Posted Dec 13, 2013

Tyler Hanley

3 42%

Homefront (2013)

"This unlikely teaming of Jason Statham and James Franco proves to be a clever blend of action and acting. "

Posted Dec 13, 2013

Tyler Hanley

4 72%

Pacific Rim (2013)

"Guillermo del Toro infuses this monstrous undertaking with just what it needs -- a little heart."

Posted Jul 15, 2013

Tyler Hanley

5 56%

Man of Steel (2013)

"DC still has much to learn from rival Marvel in the filmmaking realm, but Man of Steel at least offers hope. Hope, and a slight headache"

Posted Jun 14, 2013

Tyler Hanley

6 11%

After Earth (2013)

"After Earth is the sort of picture the Mystery Science Theater 3000 gang would salivate over."

Posted May 31, 2013

Tyler Hanley

7 78%

Iron Man 3 (2013)

"Despite a somewhat slow start and occasional plot missteps, Iron Man 3 ultimately soars thanks to its charismatic leading man and director Shane Black's man-on-wire balancing act of humor and action."

Posted May 5, 2013

Tyler Hanley

8 36%

The Incredible Burt Wonderstone (2013)

"Wonderstone is an enticing concept but lacks the laughs to back up its potential."

Posted Mar 16, 2013

Tyler Hanley

9 52%

Jack the Giant Slayer (2013)

"Director Bryan Singer, of The Usual Suspects and X-Men fame, infuses the film with just the right balance of action, romance and goofy fun."

Posted Mar 3, 2013

Tyler Hanley

10 46%

Bullet to the Head (2013)

"The title itself should deter viewers who favor smart cinema over mindless mayhem."

Posted Feb 1, 2013

Tyler Hanley

11 64%

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)

"Fantasy fans hungry for a second breakfast of Tolkien-fueled fare can get their fill with this visually sumptuous feast."

Posted Dec 14, 2012

Tyler Hanley

12 96%

Argo (2012)

"A goofy sci-fi film dubbed Argo never got made in 1980. Fortunately for moviegoers, a brilliant, Oscar-worthy drama/thriller of the same name did get made in 2012."

Posted Oct 12, 2012

Tyler Hanley

13 81%

Pitch Perfect (2012)

"Some films make you weep; others make you squirm. Then there are those that simply make you smile. Pitch Perfect falls into the third category thanks to its strong script, charming cast and catchy soundtrack."

Posted Sep 28, 2012

Tyler Hanley

14 93%

Looper (2012)

"Looper is a thoughtful genre-bender that brings science-fiction, action and mystery together in one tight package."

Posted Sep 28, 2012

Tyler Hanley

15 50%

Trouble with the Curve (2012)

"Slogging through the first 75 minutes of Trouble with the Curve is akin to watching a scoreless baseball game that doesn't get exciting until the ninth inning."

Posted Sep 21, 2012

Tyler Hanley

16 64%

The Campaign (2012)

"The strong cast and topical plot help make for a hilarious first hour."

Posted Aug 10, 2012

Tyler Hanley

17 73%

The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)

"One of Marvel Comics' popular titles in the 1980s was 'The Spectacular Spider-Man,' and that adjective describes this film. Both familiar and fresh, it's a spectacle with enough thrills and humor to satisfy most fans."

Posted Jul 6, 2012

Tyler Hanley

18 55%

People Like Us (2012)

"Solid writing and strong performances by leads Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks propel People Like Us from a maudlin drama to a memorable one."

Posted Jun 29, 2012

Tyler Hanley

19 78%

Brave (2012)

"There is a surprising beauty to Brave that transcends its visual excellence. This one is worth the risk."

Posted Jun 22, 2012

Tyler Hanley

20 41%

Rock of Ages (2012)

"Tom Cruise's magnetic performance almost makes the movie worth the price of admission. Almost."

Posted Jun 20, 2012

Tyler Hanley

21 70%

Men in Black III (2012)

"An eclectic cast and stellar visual effects coalesce to make Men in Black 3 a quintessential kernel of summer popcorn cinema."

Posted May 25, 2012

Tyler Hanley

22 37%

Dark Shadows (2012)

"Dark Shadows isn't an abomination, but it falls well short of the high expectations viewers anticipate from two of the industry's top talents."

Posted May 11, 2012

Tyler Hanley

23 92%

Marvel's The Avengers (2012)

"Adjectives used in some of Marvel Comics' iconic titles from the early 1960s through today -- amazing, fantastic, incredible -- also describe director Joss Whedon's superhero epic The Avengers."

Posted May 4, 2012

Tyler Hanley

24 25%

Wrath of the Titans (2012)

"While Wrath of the Titans may not be escapist fantasy entertainment at its finest, the film's strong cast and striking visuals make for a thrilling theatrical ride."

Posted Mar 30, 2012

Tyler Hanley

25 51%

John Carter (2012)

"Fortunately for viewers, the film is directed by Pixar sensation Andrew Stanton (Finding Nemo, WALL-E), and the visual effects are, literally, out of this world."

Posted Mar 9, 2012

Tyler Hanley

26 29%

The Vow (2012)

"If the Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore chuckler 50 First Dates had been recast as a romantic drama and produced by the Oprah Winfrey Network, The Vow might have been the result."

Posted Feb 10, 2012

Tyler Hanley

27 66%

The Woman in Black (2012)

"The movie bombards viewers with a host of scare tactics, from barely startling to borderline terrifying. And therein lies the problem."

Posted Feb 8, 2012

Tyler Hanley

28 77%

War Horse (2011)

"Expect War Horse, one of the year's best, to earn some accolades at the Academy Awards in February. Oscar always pays attention when Spielberg is in the saddle."

Posted Dec 23, 2011

Tyler Hanley

29 60%

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011)

"Shadows is like the cinematic equivalent to a bowl of Frosted Mini-Wheats -- the adult in me likes the thought-provoking mystery, but the kid in me likes seeing Sherlock kick a thug in the sternum."

Posted Dec 16, 2011

Tyler Hanley

30 94%

Hugo (2011)

"Director Martin Scorsese's well-documented affection for all things cinema has never been more evident than in the enchanting and imaginative Hugo."

Posted Nov 29, 2011

Tyler Hanley

31 43%

J. Edgar (2011)

"Watching J. Edgar reminded this critic of sitting in a dimly lit history class after tossing back a tablespoon of NyQuil."

Posted Nov 10, 2011

Tyler Hanley

32 60%

Real Steel (2011)

"Strong production values and another charismatic performance by triple-threat talent Hugh Jackman help keep this heavy-metal offspring of Rocky and Transformers out of the cinematic junk heap."

Posted Oct 7, 2011

Tyler Hanley

33 94%

Moneyball (2011)

"The unlikely tandem of Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill helps drive what is arguably the most compelling and insightful baseball-themed film since Robert Redford launched a homerun into the stadium lights in The Natural."

Posted Sep 23, 2011

Tyler Hanley

34 84%

Contagion (2011)

"Contagion offers a healthy dose of smart filmmaking while most of Hollywood is serving up cinematic placebos."

Posted Sep 9, 2011

Tyler Hanley

35 44%

Cowboys & Aliens (2011)

"Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford make a terrific, no-nonsense tandem, but there is a certain absurdity to the whole affair that makes the picture seem a bit small in scope."

Posted Jul 29, 2011

Tyler Hanley

36 96%

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 (2011)

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 caps the series with visual panache and emotional punch. It's a fitting finale to an unparalleled cinematic accomplishment."

Posted Jul 15, 2011

Tyler Hanley

37 69%

Horrible Bosses (2011)

"Horrible Bosses follows the precedent set by such earlier crime-gone-awry comedies as Ruthless People (1986), Throw Momma from the Train (1987) and Bottle Rocket (1996) with gut-busting gusto."

Posted Jul 8, 2011

Tyler Hanley

38 26%

Green Lantern (2011)

"Green Lantern is reminiscent of 2008's The Incredible Hulk, another superhero flick that boasted a strong cast but went overboard on visual stimuli."

Posted Jun 20, 2011

Tyler Hanley

39 33%

Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011)

"Just when you thought a Disney theme-park ride couldn't possibly spawn four feature-length films, here we go again."

Posted May 20, 2011

Tyler Hanley

40 90%

Bridesmaids (2011)

"Think of it as a cinematic bouquet -- catch it."

Posted May 13, 2011

Tyler Hanley

41 36%

Prom (2011)

"Perhaps the biggest problem with Prom is that there is nothing special about it. Everything feels familiar and rehashed, like eating leftovers that have lingered in the fridge and been picked at for days."

Posted Apr 29, 2011

Tyler Hanley

42 26%

Arthur (2011)

"The problem with Arthur is far more about concept than execution."

Posted Apr 8, 2011

Tyler Hanley

43 71%

Paul (2011)

"Paul is aimed primarily at comic-book fans and cosmos-loving adults who aren't easily offended. But the phenomenal cast, funny script and solid pacing help make Paul a stellar cinematic excursion for even the most down-to-earth humans."

Posted Mar 23, 2011

Tyler Hanley

44 10%

Red Riding Hood (2011)

"The unfortunate combination of a hackneyed script and inexperienced acting makes the film feel like the big-budget version of a bad high-school play."

Posted Mar 11, 2011

Tyler Hanley

45 34%

Hall Pass (2011)

"Although the film's crude humor isn't ideal for a school assembly or church social, it is undeniably effective."

Posted Feb 25, 2011

Tyler Hanley

46 33%

I Am Number Four (2011)

"Although I Am Number Four boasts some impressive visual effects and plenty of fast-paced action, the silly plot and teen-angst undertones make the film feel like "X-Files" for high-schoolers."

Posted Feb 18, 2011

Tyler Hanley

47 55%

Gnomeo and Juliet (2011)

"Executive producer Elton John's indelible stamp is all over this colorful family film."

Posted Feb 11, 2011

Tyler Hanley

48 58%

Taken (2009)

"In Taken viewers are introduced to a new side of Irish actor Liam Neeson, one that is relentless and likes to hit criminals in the throat -- a lot."

Posted Feb 1, 2011

Tyler Hanley

49 92%

Drag Me to Hell (2009)

"Director Sam Raimi returns to his Evil Dead roots for this tongue-in-cheek gorefest -- one part spooky chiller, one part campy chuckler."

Posted Feb 1, 2011

Tyler Hanley

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