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
3/5 64% Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children (2016) Burton's macabre sensibility and a delicious performance from Eva Green as shape-shifting Miss Peregrine (a Burton heroine if ever there was one) enlivens the tortuous plotting and dreary world building. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 30, 2016
1/5 69% Swiss Army Man (2016) Proving that originality can sometimes be overrated, the Sundance-hyped Swiss Army Man is like set of non-existent clothes draped over a big name actor determined to show there's more to him than the franchise that made him a star. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 30, 2016
3/5 69% Urban Hymn (2015) Urban Hymn also sounds hackneyed on paper but isn't on film. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 30, 2016
3/5 47% Free State of Jones (2016) It's dramatically compelling and sensitive to the racial complications of the era. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 30, 2016
4/5 83% Deepwater Horizon (2016) Entertaining as hell without diminishing the real people involved in the disaster. Brilliant stuff. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 30, 2016
4/5 98% Little Men (2016) Taking care not to present any of the characters as saints or villains, Sachs builds up a complex and beautifully performed portrait of modern urban living that feels honest and true. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 23, 2016
1/5 No Score Yet Scottish Mussel (2016) The worst film ever made in Scotland ... ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 23, 2016
2/5 84% The Girl With All the Gifts (2016) Aspires to greatness by pushing its social concerns and big ideas up front for all to see. But the film falls far short thanks to some pretty ropey writing, undistinguished direction and variable performances. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 23, 2016
3/5 63% The Magnificent Seven (2016) In aspiring to present itself as a diverting mainstream action film, this only ever manages to be a diverting mainstream action film. Magnificence never enters the equation. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 23, 2016
2/5 95% The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years (2016) If you ever wondered if nostalgia for the Fab Four could reach saturation point, Ron Howard's new documentary The Beatles: Eight Days A Week - The Touring Years provides the answer. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 15, 2016
4/5 90% The Clan (El Clan) (2016) So strange and compelling it quickly transcends its influences. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 15, 2016
3/5 69% The Infiltrator (2016) Cranston is eminently watchable as the in-too-deep cop risking his family life for the thrill of the job. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 15, 2016
4/5 97% Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016) Waititi keeps the jokes coming thick and fast, delivering hi-jinks and heightened characters with an emotional undertow that really resonates. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 15, 2016
3/5 36% Blair Witch (2016) Alas, when one character announces the group has been walking round in circles, it foreshadows a finalé that simply offers a more amped up version of everything we've seen before. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 15, 2016
2/5 66% Anthropoid (2016) It's a remarkable story, but director Sean Ellis doesn't really do it justice, resorting to lots of shaky cam cinematography to convey the chaos of the times and saddling his actors with Euro-pudding accents and clunky dialogue. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 11, 2016
4/5 97% Kubo and the Two Strings (2016) Beautifully told, and infused with dread, death and demons - everything, in short, that makes a good kids' film. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 11, 2016
2/5 82% Captain Fantastic (2016) In the end there's not enough depth to buy into the premise or its Hollywood ending. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 11, 2016
4/5 98% Hell or High Water (2016) Though this is a thriller with a conscience, it doesn't fall back on black-and-white morality to get us on the side of its outlaw protagonists. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 11, 2016
3/5 100% Things to Come (L'avenir) (2016) Almost as annoyingly pretentious as it sounds, but it's also saved somewhat by Huppert's prickly performance. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 1, 2016
1/5 67% Brotherhood (2016) Boilerplate gangster movie nonsense, rendered unintentionally laughable by ludicrous contrivances and Clarke's inability to convey any sense of menace as either an actor or a director. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 1, 2016
3/5 83% Sausage Party (2016) A crude, lewd, food-themed riff on Toy Story that basically functions as an animated parable about organised religion. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 1, 2016
4/5 70% Café Society (2016) Naturally it's all very nostalgic - as all Allen's period films tend to be - but that nostalgia is undercut with a truthfulness that pays off beautifully with a deft and unsentimental ending. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Sep 1, 2016
2/5 9% Cell (2016) Too many ropey CGI effects and predictable plot turns frequently bring the narrative grinding to a halt. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 28, 2016
1/5 59% Bad Moms (2016) The whole thing is so divorced from any recognisable reality that it succeeds only making all the women in it seem like psychotic morons. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 28, 2016
2/5 60% War Dogs (2016) The film is too in love with the characters' frat-boys-on-the-make swagger to be anything other than callow. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 28, 2016
4/5 82% Julieta (2016) An intriguing exploration of the complicated ways in which guilt and grief overlap, defying the expected outcome, but in way that feels more satisfying in the long term. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 28, 2016
3/5 93% Swallows and Amazons (2016) In an age in which the teen heroes and heroines of YA adaptations are routinely given ridiculously proficient combat skills, there's something nice about watching kids mucking about and learning basic wilderness skills. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 21, 2016
4/5 66% David Brent: Life on the Road (2017) The film doesn't really do anything radical here; it sticks to the mock-doc format perfected by This is Spinal Tap, but it's funny in that cringe-inducing laugh-or-cry way that made The Office such a great show. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 21, 2016
3/5 72% Valley Of Love (2016) The film is a meditation on grief, celebrity, marriage and parenthood, but while it offers incidental pleasures and insights, it doesn't have the emotional force of something like 45 Years, to which it bears a passing resemblance. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 14, 2016
3/5 77% Wiener-Dog (2016) This uneven but intermittently lacerating and wry film ... won't exactly leave you feeling happy, but may leave you feeling happy that Solondz is still casting his misanthropic eye over middle America. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 14, 2016
1/5 35% Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates (2016) Grim and dispiriting viewing. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 14, 2016
2/5 78% The Shallows (2016) If The Shallows sounds like the name of a sitcom family composed of character-types from dumb movies, it is at least an accurate description of everything related to this idiotic shark movie, not least its heroine. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 14, 2016
4/5 82% Author: The JT LeRoy Story (2016) Fascinating viewing, offering a more sensitive counterpoint to the efforts of various news organisations to brand what she did an elaborate and cynically motivated hoax. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 7, 2016
4/5 84% Sweet Bean (An) (2016) Kawasi builds on the simple metaphorical significance of the set-up to tease out a much deeper and more compassionate study of the way our natural inclination to shun the marginalised in society diminishes us as a whole. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 7, 2016
3/5 72% The Carer (2015) Cox certainly seems to be having a blast and, despite some of the plot details in the latter stages stretching credulity to breaking point, his sense of playfulness makes it easy to forgive any shortcomings. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Aug 7, 2016
2/5 56% Jason Bourne (2016) It's clear Bourne has once again become a compliant foot soldier - this time in the service of a Hollywood studio desperate for an asset it can exploit for years to come. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 31, 2016
3/5 94% Finding Dory (2016) Stuffed to the gills with gags and generates plenty of empathy for the Ellen DeGeneres-voiced Dory ... ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 31, 2016
3/5 88% Born To Be Blue (2016) Even though the film won't fully commit to its more experimental flourishes, Hawke makes it feel truthful in a way that conventional music biopics rarely manage. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 28, 2016
3/5 81% Chevalier (2016) Bolstered by an underlying allegory about the financial crisis, the film is abstract to the point of absurdity, but that may just be the point. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 24, 2016
4/5 84% Star Trek Beyond (2016) Lin, taking the reins from JJ Abrams, keeps everything moving at an entertainingly fast clip. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 24, 2016
3/5 75% The BFG (2016) Never really takes flight the way it should. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 24, 2016
4/5 89% The Childhood of a Leader (2016) The film subtly links the complex bureaucracy required to pursue stability between nations with the fostering of certain conditions that allow resentful egotists with dangerous ideas to flourish if we let them. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 18, 2016
1/5 13% Ithaca (2016) The stylistic mishmash is jarring to say the least. Even the performances -- usually a strong point for actors-turned-directors -- are leaden. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 18, 2016
4/5 100% The Hard Stop (2015) An illuminating, thought-provoking and depressingly timely film. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 17, 2016
3/5 76% Keanu (2016) Even though they're virtual unknowns in the UK, they're appealing enough to elevate this beyond being just another wacky stoner comedy. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 17, 2016
3/5 73% Ghostbusters (2016) [The cast] add a freshness that negates the need for some of the more groaning tributes to the original movie that this version of Ghostbusters clearly feels it needs to make. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 17, 2016
3/5 92% Summertime (La Belle Saison) (2016) The film ... feels oddly dated and bit too prescriptive, particularly as a family crisis forces this couple to make a go of it in the less enlightened environs of rural France. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 17, 2016
88% Garnet's Gold (2016) There's a suspicion that Perkins' beautiful and expressionistic camera work...is masking the possibility that his subject is really just a bit of a windbag. Still, the tension between these two dynamics proves oddly compelling. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 12, 2016
2/5 15% Ice Age: Collision Course (2016) It's the fifth instalment of the animated franchise and is as tired as you might expect from a series with this many entries. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 10, 2016
3/5 85% Maggie's Plan (2016) It's not nearly sophisticated enough to match the complexity of its characters, whose labyrinthine romantic entanglements have a truthful ring to them. ‐ Scotsman
Posted Jul 10, 2016