Barbara VanDenburgh

Barbara VanDenburgh
Barbara VanDenburgh's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Arizona Republic

Movie Reviews Only

Showing 51 - 100 of 179
Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
3/5 66%

Unexpected (2015)

"It's the same warmth and kindness that makes us care about these two characters that smothers the film's fire before it can ever get roaring." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 23, 2015
3/5 61%

Southpaw (2015)

""Southpaw" is all about the fist. There's no delicate footwork here, no lingering grace notes. It's a film played entirely in power chords." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 23, 2015
5/5 88%

The Tribe (2015)

"It's got a story every bit as bold and fearless as its approach - the kind of primal story that's beyond the ken of language." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 9, 2015
3/5 63%

Magic Mike XXL (2015)

"To the film's credit, it knows it's ridiculous. It's aiming for ridiculous, and it hits the mark as precisely as the strippers groove half-naked to their beats." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 29, 2015
2.5/5 34%

Max (2015)

"It's the Walmart of feel-good family films: accessible, cheaply made, useful in a pinch and full of American flags." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 25, 2015
3/5 43%

Madame Bovary (2015)

""Madame Bovary's" attempt to give Flaubert's text the benefit of a 21st-century feminist perspective is admirable if unsuccessful." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 11, 2015
2/5 36%

Hunting Elephants (2015)

"The tired caper flick can't crack a smile, never mind a bank vault." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted May 28, 2015
1.5/5 20%

Bravetown (2015)

"There is nothing brave about "Bravetown," a film so paint-by-the-numbers bland that its efforts to piggyback the sacrifice of American servicemen and women for emotional depth is downright craven." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted May 7, 2015
3.5/5 48%

The D Train (2015)

"The film goes off the beaten path to tell a very familiar story in an unfamiliar way, turning the mismatched buddy dynamic Black and Marsden had developed into something much more complicated and interesting." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted May 7, 2015
3.5/5 86%

Cheatin' (2015)

"The whole range of human emotion - love, lust, anger, jealousy, despair, grief - is felt through Plympton's animation. It's just a shame that his boundless creativity doesn't extend to the narrative." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 23, 2015
4/5 94%

Monkey Kingdom (2015)

"Although its chief asset is its inherently entertaining subject matter, "Monkey Kingdom" does far more than just let the cameras roll: It teases a compelling drama out of one monkey tribe's complicated social hierarchy ..." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 16, 2015
3/5 76%

Alex of Venice (2015)

"Although it's enjoyable, actor Chris Messina's directorial debut is somehow less than the sum of its parts, wading only through the shallow end of familiar human conflicts resolved too conveniently to satisfy." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 16, 2015
3/5 29%

The Longest Ride (2015)

"It's exactly what you'd expect, except executed with more-than-typical competence with the help of a few excellent actors and some gorgeously photographed rodeo scenes that capture the drama and thrill of bull riding." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 9, 2015
3/5 43%

Effie Gray (2015)

"The film itself begins to feel like Gray, a pretty bird in a gilded cage with nowhere to fly." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Apr 2, 2015
2/5 47%

Home (2015)

"Lazy gags, and it's been done better elsewhere." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 26, 2015
3.5/5 94%

She's Beautiful When She's Angry (2014)

"Although much of that archival footage is incredibly familiar after decades of exposure - the burning bras, the clever protest signs, the impassioned speeches, Gloria Steinem - it's the footage of the opposition that really shocks." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 19, 2015
3/5 64%

The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (2015)

"It's asked in the film, "How many new lives can we have?" The answer, it turns, is however many we want. And as long as Dench, Smith, Nighy and Imrie stick around, the same probably is true of "Marigold" movies." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Mar 5, 2015
3/5 56%

Focus (2015)

"Although it brings nothing new to the con-artist fold, or even anything thrilling, "Focus" is a seductive enough rehash that benefits from the built-in pleasures of the trade." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 26, 2015
2/5 21%

White Rabbit (2015)

""White Rabbit" is a deeply unpleasant viewing experience." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 12, 2015
3.5/5 80%

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water (2015)

"The plot is straightforward, predictable and slight, no more intricate a plot than a 15-minute TV episode would have. It's the freewheeling madness of its execution that makes the movie such a trip - as in acid trip." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Feb 5, 2015
2/5 40%

Black or White (2015)

"A movie that's every bit as oversimplified and obvious as its title." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 29, 2015
3/5 64%

Still Life (2015)

"A soulful if obvious meditation on lives lived unshared, and one man's dedication to righting those wrongs while neglecting his own life." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 22, 2015
3.5/5 98%

Paddington (2015)

""Paddington" is a mostly smart update loaded with charm, and it preserves enough of the fuzzy feelings for purists to walk away with a smile." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 15, 2015
4.5/5 99%

Selma (2015)

"A somber and distressingly relevant tribute to King and his fellow compatriots in the civil-rights movement of the 1960s." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jan 8, 2015
2/5 46%

The Gambler (2014)

"The return is as miniscule as the stakes." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Dec 25, 2014
2.5/5 33%

Before I Disappear (2014)

""Before I Disappear" wears its big, aching heart on its sleeve with a sincerity so unwavering that it's borderline goofy. And in a film about a burnout bonding with a cute kid, that lack of self-awareness proves critical." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Dec 4, 2014
3/5 73%

Penguins Of Madagascar (2014)

"All the glossy, kinetic animation and inventive action sequences get lost in the gag machine. The film throws jokes out like a tennis-ball machine on the fritz: gross humor, slapstick pratfalls, bizarre non sequiturs." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Nov 25, 2014
3.5/5 74%

Point and Shoot (2014)

"Is it bravery or vanity that brings a sheltered Baltimore 20-something halfway across the world to film himself fighting in a war in which he has no perceptible stake?" ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Nov 20, 2014
3.5/5 78%

Harmontown (2014)

"It's in the exploration of how "Community" fandom formed its own distinctive community of outcasts that the film excels, finally making sense of the show's cult popularity by diving into that cult and crowdsurfing on it." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 30, 2014
2/5 10%

Meet The Mormons (2014)

"Would you go out of your way to see an infomercial that was more than an hour long? Would you even pay for the privilege? That's what "Meet the Mormons" would have filmgoers do." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 9, 2014
2.5/5 38%

The Liberator (2014)

"How disappointing that a movie about challenging authority should be such a slave to convention." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Oct 2, 2014
3/5 51%

The Zero Theorem (2014)

"It's bursting with Gilliam's trademark manic energy, but the focus and execution are so soft that that energy ends up derailing the film instead of invigorating it." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 25, 2014
3.5/5 68%

God Help the Girl (2014)

"It's adorable. It's also very thin." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 18, 2014
3/5 67%

Dolphin Tale 2 (2014)

"It's worth wading through some sugary-sweet human drama, and the occasional wooden line delivery, for that intimate look at nature." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 11, 2014
3/5 58%

May In The Summer (2014)

"Ultimately you're left with a drama so contained, it can be neatly wrapped up in single sentences of passed-on wisdom." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Sep 4, 2014
3/5 65%

Life Of Crime (2014)

"Mostly, it's fine. The acting is fine. The writing is fine. The story is fine. There are a few laughs." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 28, 2014
3/5 34%

The November Man (2014)

"Nothing fresh is being brought to the table, but it's a sufficient bit of fun for anyone who longs for the days of Brosnan's spy swagger." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 26, 2014
4/5 98%

A Summer's Tale (2014)

"There's a purity to the experience of watching a film so naturalistic, like living in someone else's life for two hours." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 21, 2014
4/5 84%

Rich Hill (2014)

"There's no judgment or condescension in the film's treatment of its subjects, nor is there any attempt to dissect any societal shortcomings." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 21, 2014
3.5/5 74%

Alive Inside (2014)

"Equal parts heart-wrenching and heart-lifting ..." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Aug 14, 2014
3/5 60%

Hercules (2014)

"Give "Hercules" this much: It knows what it is." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 25, 2014
2/5 22%

A Long Way Down (2014)

"Tackles the topic of life-ending despair with all the delicacy and grace of a Hallmark greeting card." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 17, 2014
1.5/5 17%

Sex Tape (2014)

"For a movie filled with amateur porn, sex toys, cocaine and Cameron Diaz's butt, "Sex Tape" is awfully tame." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 17, 2014
3.5/5 23%

Tammy (2014)

"Equal parts funny and heartfelt - but also less than the sum of its parts." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jul 1, 2014
3.5/5 84%

Violette (2014)

"Yes, her capacity for such deeply wretched feelings is necessary to her art; the film succeeds at convincing us of that. But it doesn't inspire a lot of sympathy for a woman who is so clearly the author of her own misery." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 26, 2014
2.5/5 23%

Think Like a Man Too (2014)

"It's the PG-13 version of "The Hangover," and more than anything, that's just boring." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 18, 2014
3/5 89%

Obvious Child (2014)

"It's a well-written rom-com with rascally charm, a modest story of an awkward Brooklyn girl making a go of life." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 12, 2014
2/5 76%

Chinese Puzzle (Casse-tête chinois) (2014)

"The film flits from one subplot to another and not in that delightfully freewheeling European kind of way." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted Jun 5, 2014

Fed Up (2014)

""Fed Up" gets to feeling like a special nightly news report. But as news reports go, it is an especially thorough and well-produced one, taking an in-depth look at America's worsening obesity epidemic and pointing fingers at culprits" ‐Arizona Republic
Posted May 15, 2014

Chef (2014)

"There are enough satisfying flavor notes in "Chef" to make it a tasty repast, even if the film bears too much of a resemblance to the unadventurous menu the food critic pans." ‐Arizona Republic
Posted May 15, 2014
Showing 51 - 100 of 179