Alistair HarknessMovie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

Alistair Harkness

Alistair Harkness
Alistair Harkness's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Scotsman, Film4

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
4/5 100% Cameraperson (2016) The effect is entrancing: an expressionistic portrait of the itinerant lifestyle her career dictates and a subtle exploration of the ethics and practices involved in documenting the world in a truthful way. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 19, 2017
4/5 87% Lion (2016) This is the sort of true story that catches you unawares, even if you know (or think you know) where it's going. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 19, 2017
4/5 89% Jackie (2016) Don't expect a comprehensive biopic of the wife, mother, widow, tastemaker and White House style icon. This is a rigorous exploration of Jackie Kennedy's steely determination ... ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 19, 2017
2/5 34% Live By Night (2017) Affleck - directing for the first time since Argo - just can't quite make it come alive on screen. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 13, 2017
3/5 93% La La Land (2016) It's not hard to see the appeal - or indeed admire the ambition of Chazelle, who's still in his early 30s (La La Land is only his third movie). ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 13, 2017
3/5 83% Silence (2017) A sincere, austere, intellectually rigorous attempt to grapple with God's silence in the face of human suffering. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 5, 2017
1/5 33% Monster Trucks (2017) There's a reason this has sat on a shelf for two years. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 5, 2017
2/5 17% Assassin's Creed (2016) Kurzel has transposed the best-selling video game to the big screen in a way that will likely confound anyone not already au fait with the source material. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jan 5, 2017
3/5 88% Leap! (Ballerina) (2017) The film does a nice job of capturing the magic of the French capital in the late 19th century and though it gets a bit saccharine, it at least features a heroine working hard to be good at something. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 22, 2016
1/5 12% Collateral Beauty (2016) The latest whack-a-doodle slab of gooey cosmic nonsense to star Will Smith. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 22, 2016
2/5 40% Why Him? (2016) Why Him? It's a question fans of Breaking Bad might ask of Bryan Cranston upon watching this sluggish, over-long, laugh-light Christmas comedy. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 22, 2016
1/5 31% Passengers (2016) Not even Jennifer Lawrence can save Passengers, a sinking (space) ship of a movie in which a collection of second-hand ideas combined with dodgy sexual politics have produced a sci-fi film of crushing tedium. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 22, 2016
4/5 85% Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016) One of the most exhilarating in the series, a film with a real sense of how to tell a story - and tell it well. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 15, 2016
2/5 42% Office Christmas Party (2016) An office-based (and less funny) riff on last Christmas's superior Tina Fey/Amy Poehler hit Sisters. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 8, 2016
3/5 93% Life, Animated (2016) The film offers a fascinating testament to the power and limitations of movies as tools for understanding and communicating with the world around us. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 8, 2016
3/5 61% Snowden (2016) In its own typically bombastic way, the film is not unentertaining. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 8, 2016
3/5 72% The Birth of a Nation (2016) Parker's decision to use the tropes of the Hollywood historical epic is a political statement in itself, one made more pointed by the title's bold repudiation of DW Griffith's cinematically ground-breaking, horrifyingly racist 1915 epic of the same name. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 8, 2016
2/5 61% The Unknown Girl (La fille inconnue) (2016) Too often the Dardennes rely on their ultra-naturalistic style and socially aware themes to excuse some pretty contrived and unconvincing plotting. A rare misfire. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 2, 2016
3/5 95% The Edge of Seventeen (2016) Though the film isn't exactly deep, Steinfeld makes it watchable and there's amusing support from Woody Harrelson as her wry teacher. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 2, 2016
4/5 80% Chi-Raq (2015) Chi-Raq doesn't all work, but it's simultaneously righteous and bawdy enough to get its message across in entertaining fashion and features a great performance from up-and-coming actress Teyonah Parris in the lead. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 2, 2016
3/5 85% Sully (2016) Where the film succeeds in a big way - aside from casting Hanks and Eckhart - is the recreation of the emergency landing itself and its immediate aftermath: it's thrilling, heart-in-mouth stuff. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 2, 2016
4/5 71% Bleed For This (2016) Younger takes care to keep things rooted in the real and he's aided by Teller and Eckhart, who give it their all in a movie that ultimately celebrates the simple power of living for the thing you love most. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Dec 2, 2016
4/5 94% Creepy (Kuripi: Itsuwari no rinjin) (2016) It's been a while since there's been a gripping serial killer movie, but Kiyoshi Kurosawa's new film Creepy more than lives up to its title. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 25, 2016
4/5 96% Paterson (2016) [Jarmusch's] best in a decade. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 25, 2016
2/5 61% Allied (2016) Brad Pitt and Marion Cotillard find themselves at the centre of not just one but two of the most risible scenes of the year. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 25, 2016
4/5 97% Your Name (Kimi No Na Wa.) (2016) Your Name exploits anime's limitless potential to tell a poignant love story that incorporates gender identity and cosmic wormholes to dazzling narrative effect. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 17, 2016
4/5 82% Indignation (2016) Marcus is constantly reminded of the fact that even small mistakes can have serious consequences and the film uses this to subtly explore whether an emphasis on conformity cultivates a fatalistic psyche by forcing us to deny our most basic yearnings. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 17, 2016
2/5 43% Dog Eat Dog (2016) The way it gleefully embraces the violent, racist and misogynistic impulses of its ageing white male protagonists in post-recession America makes it feel sickeningly apropos. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 17, 2016
4/5 73% Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016) Like its hero it's full of magic, but endearingly modest with it. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 17, 2016
4/5 No Score Yet 16 Years Till Summer (2015) Another quietly brilliant example of some of the great narrative documentary filmmaking currently being done in Scotland. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 10, 2016
5/5 94% Arrival (2016) Sci-fi with a big emotional sweep is tough to get right. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 10, 2016
4/5 93% The Innocents (Les innocentes) (2016) As quietly damning as it is tragically hopeful. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 10, 2016
3/5 73% You've Been Trumped Too (2016) Though Baxter recycles a lot of material from the first two films, he gets some interesting results ,,, ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 3, 2016
2/5 75% A Street Cat Named Bob (2016) There's a genuinely uplifting true story behind A Street Cat Named Bob. Sadly this film version - based on James Bowen's best-selling memoir of the same name - is too twee to do it justice ... ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 3, 2016
2/5 60% The Light Between Oceans (2016) Though the cast (which includes Rachel Weisz) does some good work, it's too controlled to rip you apart the way a film like this should. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 3, 2016
3/5 72% Nocturnal Animals (2016) The thriller elements have genuine gut-wrenching power, but everything around them is comically severe. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 3, 2016
3/5 51% The Accountant (2016) Rain Man meets Batman in The Accountant, an enjoyably silly action movie starring Ben Affleck as an on-the-spectrum forensic accountant who doubles up as a secret vigilante. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Nov 3, 2016
4/5 96% Train to Busan (Bu-san-haeng) (2016) Sang-ho can't quite resist a last-minute lurch towards sentimentality, but for the most part he keeps this moveable feast for the undead on track with relentless and bloody carnage. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 27, 2016
3/5 81% Starfish (2016) Features good performances from Tom Riley and Joanne Froggatt as the couple trying to come to terms with very altered lives. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 27, 2016
4/5 94% Ethel & Ernest (2016) A lovely and poignant animated adaptation of Raymond Briggs's picture book biography of his eponymous working class parents. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 27, 2016
3/5 93% Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World (2016) This exploration of the birth and development of the internet is nothing if not entertaining. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 27, 2016
4/5 90% Doctor Strange (2016) Mostly ... this is a weird and witty breath of fresh air- and as a bonus it also finds a neat solution to the excessive third-act destruction of The Avengers/Captain America films without stinting on spectacle. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 27, 2016
1/5 19% Inferno (2016) It takes real effort to make a film as heroically awful as Inferno, so if nothing else Ron Howard and Tom Hanks deserve credit for their ongoing commitment to bringing the Dan Brown-sourced franchise to the big screen in such dire fashion. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 14, 2016
3/5 79% American Honey (2016) What emerges is a sprawling coming-of-age film that deliberately tempers the romanticism of the landscape with the rawness of a life lived tethered to the bottom rung of the societal ladder. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 14, 2016
1/5 63% Storks (2016) Serves up a nonsensical plot, lots of bright colours and a raft of celebrity voices, but not much else. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 14, 2016
4/5 87% A Monster Calls (2017) Mixing animation and heartfelt storytelling, the film features an impressive break-out performance from Edinburgh actor Lewis MacDougall in the central role. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 11, 2016
5/5 96% Manchester by the Sea (2016) It's a story about grief and redemption, but it's told with the same complexity, depth and humour as [Lonergan's] debut film, You Can Count On Me. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 11, 2016
5/5 94% The Handmaiden (Ah-ga-ssi) (2016) A bold, brilliant, beautiful and somewhat bonkers (an octopus does feature) feminist-themed revenge story. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 11, 2016
4/5 98% Moonlight (2016) A remarkable drama about a young black American man wrestling with his sexuality in a society already prejudiced against him because of the colour of his skin. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 11, 2016
4/5 89% A United Kingdom (2017) Oyelowo and Pike generate so much heartfelt chemistry it never feels like we're being preached at. The result is absorbing mainstream cinema, a great story told with real craft and flair. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Oct 11, 2016