The Tomatometer rating – based on the published opinions of hundreds of film and
television critics – is a trusted measurement of movie and TV programming quality
for millions of moviegoers. It represents the percentage of professional critic reviews
that are positive for a given film or television show.
From the Critics
From RT Users Like You!
The Tomatometer is 60% or higher.
The Tomatometer is 59% or lower.
The Tomatometer is 75% or higher, with 40 reviews (movies) or 20 reviews (TV). At least 5 reviews from Top Critics.
Percentage of users who rate a movie or TV show positively.
Inherent Vice is an aimless trudge through the fog of a marijuana haze. That's to be expected with a movie adapted from a novel by Thomas Pynchon. Nobody has ever turned a Pynchon book into a movie before. I mean Gravity's Rainbow is kind of famous for being un-adaptable, So I'll give Anderson credit for trying. Some will champion its mystifying merits. Translation: Inherent Vice is an acquired taste. One's enjoyment will partially rest on how much you value a plot in a 2 1/2 hour film. The atmosphere is so drugged out you could almost get high by association. I couldn't find much to enjoy in these shenanigans. And that's all this is. A bunch of half baked gags. Pun intended. Any story that weaves in characters named Puck Beaverton, Japonica Fenway, and Bigfoot Bjornsen obviously isn't meant to taken seriously. Add a cultural 1970s LA milieu which finds room for the Aryan Brotherhood, the Manson family murders, an Asian massage parlor and something called Golden Fang which could be a secretive Chinese syndicate or simply an alliance of wealthy dentists. That tongue in cheek attitude is good for a few scattered laughs I suppose. Inherent Vice is an "experience" to be sure, but I'll pass on taking a second hit.
The Imitation Game is 3/4 of an extremely entertaining biography. The last half hour gives us a hurried peek into the concluding events of his life. The movie I saw was 1 hour 54 minutes but the final quarter was so rushed it had me thinking the projectionist forgot to load a reel of film. One minute Turing is being lionized for having made "the single biggest contribution to Allied victory in the war against Nazi Germany." The next minute he's being arrested on charges of "gross indecency" due to his homosexuality. From hero to outcast in ostensibly minutes. A title card during the epilogue hastily informs us of the circumstances surrounding his death. Talk about abrupt endings. We're left wondering why the complete 180 from the government with regards to all his tireless work. Unfortunately the script doesn't delve into these latter day developments. For most of the run time, The Imitation Game remains a highly polished, beautifully acted picture. That mystifying resolution though. It's such a supremely frustrating experience. Unfortunately we walk away with more questions than answers.
Still Alice is a beautifully acted film with a stunningly sincere performance by Julianne Moore at its center. She is what sets this mostly conventional tale apart. Moore genuinely conveys the helplessness at losing your memory while still being aware of what's happening. At one point she records a video message directed at her less cognizant future self. Her shocking directions are absolutely chilling in their matter-of-factness. And yet there's an ostentatious air about the production that keeps us at a distance. Alice and her WASPy family are the picture of a privileged life. She and her husband are an educated, wealthy couple with 3 attractive adult children, polite well mannered in their exquisitely decorated Manhattan brownstone. She's just turned 50 though with her gorgeous face, she doesn't look it. All of this almost scientifically designed to make the tragedy of her ultimate predicament even more emotional. Still Alice is perhaps the most empathetic presentation of the helplessness an individual afflicted with alzheimer's truly feels. To that end, Julianne Moore renders an extraordinary achievement in a drama that sits comfortably in the sudsy water of a sentimental tearjerker.
It's hard not to regard this pedantic film as anything more than just a respectful history lesson. The picture opens with a bang with some spectacular aerial photography of B24 bombers in flight. We flash back to an earlier time. Key aspects of Zamperini's early life are highlighted and we see everything that led up to his enlistment. That all works as the developments move at a brisk pace. Once their plane fails and they are set adrift at sea, it becomes a bit plodding, but still interesting enough. It's when our lead is taken captive by the Japanese that the narrative loses its way. There Zamperini must contend with Mutsuhiro Watanabe (Miyavi) the Imperial Japanese Army sergeant at the prison. Nicknamed "The Bird", he is a most peculiar fellow. A fey personality who takes an instant dislike to him. Miyavi was a complete unknown to me but I found his mannered performance almost anachronistic for the period setting. Small surprise when I discovered he's actually a famous pop singer in his native Japan. There's much to recommend here, but at over two hours the production taxes the viewer's patience after a while. Let's just say, Unbroken is worth watching once and then never again.
Horrible Bosses 2 isn't completely worthless, but it isn't very worthwhile either. The winning chemistry between Jason Bateman, Charlie Day and Jason Sudeikis is the best element of the picture. It's their talent that extracts laughs from a middling script that wouldn't have been as funny without them. Their camaraderie is what made the first movie such a joy. They still mesh like a modern day Three Stooges. It's just that the interaction isn't quite as finely tuned this time around. Their appearance on a Good Morning Los Angeles TV show to unveil their new invention is the funniest part in the whole movie. It's all downhill from there. Their characters are less defined. Instead they shout a lot more. The plot is more perfunctory. Simply put, the comedy just isn't very funny.