Cinema Signals

Rating Title | Year Quote Author
1 61%

The Reader (2008)

"Literature as aphrodisiac - merits the attention of discerning audiences who will also want to see it for Winslet's nuanced, sensual performance."

Posted Dec 21, 2008

Jules Brenner

2 27%

Seven Pounds (2008)

"Where the weird government employee, who lives in a hotel that rents by the hour and buys sting rays for his aquarium, gets tested."

Posted Dec 19, 2008

Jules Brenner

3 31%

While She Was Out (2008)

"Kudos to whoever came up with the title. The rest of you are fired."

Posted Dec 17, 2008

Jules Brenner

4 72%

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)

"A life lived in backward progression leaves a feeling of melancholy in this accomplished realization of a novel concept."

Posted Dec 12, 2008

Jules Brenner

5 33%

Good (2008)

"Mortensen evidently thought that a stuttering and maddeningly tentative delivery renders the man, as written, understandable, or creditable, or sympathetically good."

Posted Dec 8, 2008

Jules Brenner

6 27%

Punisher: War Zone (2008)

"A one-man invasion. Good he's on our side."

Posted Dec 6, 2008

Jules Brenner

7 68%

Revolutionary Road (2008)

"Onscreen cigarette smoking is as incessant as April's discontent--the period prop that becomes a running gag. A more important choke point, though, is dim audience involvement."

Posted Dec 2, 2008

Jules Brenner

8 79%

Gran Torino (2009)

"Some hilarious grouch humor once you get to at least like the guy."

Posted Dec 1, 2008

Jules Brenner

9 63%

Traitor (2008)

"Cheadle's struggle to express the convictions of a man who assimilates evil in order to destroy it is sometimes mesmerizing; sometimes schizophrenic."

Posted Nov 29, 2008

Jules Brenner

10 21%

Fred Claus (2007)

"A turbulent ride that shifts tonal gears and messages like oscillations in the weather, ending in mythological frostbite."

Posted Nov 26, 2008

Jules Brenner

11 55%

Australia (2008)

"It takes a continent's worth of nerve and extravagance to make a film like this in this way, throwing melodramatic romance, greed, racism and aboriginal spirituality into the fantasy mix."

Posted Nov 21, 2008

Jules Brenner

12 57%

Defiance (2009)

"Zwick's sedate storytelling tone doesn't seem to be coming from the same source as his "Blood Diamond" or "The Last Samurai." Perhaps he thought he was making another "Schindler's List.""

Posted Nov 20, 2008

Jules Brenner

13 78%

Doubt (2008)

"An award-seeking missile of a film which contains enough performance firepower to reach its target."

Posted Nov 19, 2008

Jules Brenner

14 96%

The Class (2008)

"Besides writing the book and the screenplay, Begaudeau takes the role of an indefatigable teacher for whom there must be an award or trophy for endurance."

Posted Nov 18, 2008

Jules Brenner

15 64%

Quantum of Solace (2008)

"Will be remembered for the missing ingredients of the cocktail we know as Bond, and for the quantum of special entertainment it only partially provides us."

Posted Nov 16, 2008

Jules Brenner

16 34%

Adam Resurrected (2008)

"Might have been a touching story of deep irony if Schrader's approach didn't suffer so much from narrative confusion in an effort to convey the disorientation at its center."

Posted Nov 14, 2008

Jules Brenner

17 92%

Frost/Nixon (2008)

"Add Langella's transfigurative artistry to the Nixon playbook (and to Oscar's)."

Posted Nov 12, 2008

Jules Brenner

18 63%

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas) (2008)

"Didn't these people see photos in the papers so that they could tell the difference between nighttime garb and the uniform of death?"

Posted Nov 9, 2008

Jules Brenner

19 71%

Last Chance Harvey (2009)

"The sentimentality crowd will sup it up but my tougher-love wish was for these two to find better chances to explore their considerable talents."

Posted Nov 8, 2008

Jules Brenner

20 94%

Milk (2008)

"From a filmmaking aspect if not a subject-worthy one (from some hostile viewpoints), this is a biopic whose qualities made "Milk" worth doing."

Posted Nov 7, 2008

Jules Brenner

21 18%

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008)

"This "First Animated Star Wars Movie" does the series no favors, demonstrating why live action trumps animation--at least when the digital beings and creatures are this poorly designed."

Posted Nov 4, 2008

Jules Brenner

22 65%

Zack and Miri Make a Porno (2008)

"A big enough chunk of the demographic will eat it up--to make this a winning investment for the real producers. You can take that to the bank."

Posted Nov 3, 2008

Jules Brenner

23 94%

Slumdog Millionaire (2008)

"Boyle's answer to "Across the Universe" in which, out of a miasma of cruelty and idealism, a romance takes root and fills us with a sense of masterful achievement."

Posted Oct 31, 2008

Jules Brenner

24 72%

Eden (2008)

"A story of a psychological phenomenon that might be prevalent in lots of marriages, but an unenlightened approach makes for an unlikely Eden."

Posted Oct 28, 2008

Jules Brenner

25 94%

Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father (2008)

"One can hardly watch what an unimaginable breakdown of Canadian law enforcement and protection of the young cost in loss and sorrow as the tale turns almost too painful to bear."

Posted Oct 28, 2008

Jules Brenner

26 63%

Changeling (2008)

"Not in the knockout category of "Million Dollar Baby" but very worth seeing despite about 30 minutes of indulgent excess."

Posted Oct 28, 2008

Jules Brenner

27 35%

Pride and Glory (2008)

"A crime drama about a family of cops discovering corruption in its ranks--co-written, directed and produced by two sons of cops. You're bound to come up with something very muscular, even if it's entirely derivative."

Posted Oct 22, 2008

Jules Brenner

28 98%

Let the Right One In (2008)

"A most original meal of magical horror and gothic fiction. I can't remember the last time I wanted a film to be longer."

Posted Oct 22, 2008

Jules Brenner

29 59%

W. (2008)

""W." begs for a "W.-2, the sequel" at a later time when the treatment can be far bolder in revealing the psychology, the history and the man's effect on our country."

Posted Oct 20, 2008

Jules Brenner

30 98%

The Wrestler (2008)

"As painfully truthful as Siegel's closely observed character construction is, the film is not without flaws--but they take nothing away from what touches us."

Posted Oct 18, 2008

Jules Brenner

31 88%

Almost Famous (2000)

Posted Oct 18, 2008

Jules Brenner

32 66%

La Sconosciuta (The Unknown) (The Other Woman) (2008)

"[An] exquisite mystery thriller."

Posted Oct 18, 2008

Jules Brenner

33 60%

Humboldt County (2008)

"It becomes an endearing journey, even with the shock of Bogart's sudden departure from the scene and the movie's change of pace."

Posted Oct 18, 2008

Jules Brenner

34 50%

Any Given Sunday (1999)

Posted Oct 18, 2008

Jules Brenner

35 69%

Keeping the Faith (2000)

Posted Oct 18, 2008

Jules Brenner

36 51%

What Just Happened? (2008)

"The draw, for fan mag stalwarts, behind-the-scenes aficionados and the film-passionate is this A-list cast delivering a few chuckle-worthy self-stereotypes."

Posted Oct 12, 2008

Jules Brenner

37 61%

The Express (2008)

"Too much synthetic spotlessness to score a real and grimy touchdown of credibility and inspiration."

Posted Oct 9, 2008

Jules Brenner

38 54%

Body of Lies (2008)

"What distinguishes the book with gripping realism may not be so apparent in the cinematic context. Still, for spy calculus, action, and character realization, I assign you to see it."

Posted Oct 8, 2008

Jules Brenner

39 45%

Lakeview Terrace (2008)

"Such a hammer-on-anvil approach that it's clear LaBute and his writers place little trust in subtlety and damn near none in off-message complexity."

Posted Oct 7, 2008

Jules Brenner

40 68%

Synecdoche, New York (2008)

"If you share a taste for Kaufman's bizarre formulation of human and theatrical experience you'll appreciate his mixture of illusion with failure, the unkept promise of genius, the residue of defeat, disappointment and melancholy."

Posted Oct 5, 2008

Jules Brenner

41 88%

I've Loved You So Long (2008)

"The pace builds a degree of tedium, crying out for some cinematic elevation--though not at the expense of the character depth that is the film's sterling attribute."

Posted Oct 3, 2008

Jules Brenner

42 93%

Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

"Hawkins' Poppy charms us even as she makes us concerned about what all the giggling is covering up. She is, after all, a very sympathetic case study."

Posted Oct 1, 2008

Jules Brenner

43 58%

Taken (2009)

"Just calling this formulaic doesn't cover it. The script should be credited to the computer software template that originated it."

Posted Sep 28, 2008

Jules Brenner

44 92%

Obscene (2008)

"Those who didn't live through this period and take for granted the totality of free expression enjoyed today will have their eyes opened by this homage."

Posted Sep 26, 2008

Jules Brenner

45 50%

Sex and the City (2008)

"Reliving the fantasy lush life."

Posted Sep 26, 2008

Jules Brenner

46 14%

Deception (2008)

"The all-too-obvious script weaknesses didn't spoil my fascination with the premise and where it took us. It also afforded me a whole new look at Williams."

Posted Sep 24, 2008

Jules Brenner

47 76%

Appaloosa (2008)

"Where the film lets you down is in the boundaries of the dramatic map which needs a more dynamic (and cinematic) driving force."

Posted Sep 22, 2008

Jules Brenner

48 61%

The Duchess (2008)

"A great life, and its depiction produces a treasury of costuming and hairdressing flair to hide the relationship and drama within drawing room walls."

Posted Sep 19, 2008

Jules Brenner

49 43%

Pathology (2008)

"Comes off as a semi-absurd variant of the horror mystique cheating the potentials of impeccable production values."

Posted Sep 19, 2008

Jules Brenner

50 85%

Rachel Getting Married (2008)

"The roving camerawork becomes the instrument for thematic rambling and a confined, suffocating marital drama that sparkles with the family treasure -- Hathaway's breakout emotional magnetism."

Posted Sep 17, 2008

Jules Brenner

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