Bob Bloom

Bob Bloom
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
I was born in New York and am a 1970 graduate of Ohio University, Athens, Ohio, was a bachelor's degree in journalism. I have been working at various newspapers since 1970 and have been writing about the entertainment industry and doing movie reviews since 1977. I am currently the movie critic at the Journal & Courier in Lafayette, Ind.
Favorites:
All-time favorites: Field of Dreams, Singin' in the Rain, City Lights, Casablanca, Adventures of Robin Hood, The Masked Marvel, Adventures of Captain Marvel, 1776, The Maltese Falcon, The Matrix, Jason and the Argonauts and Seven Brides for Seven Brothers.
Location: Lafayette, Ind.
Official Websites: jconline.com

movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year Review
3.5/4 77% Never Look Away (2019) You'd think with its lengthy running time, "Never Look Away" would sag at times. Though, despite a dearth of action, writer-director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck holds your interest because of the tension he intersperses throughout the movie. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 20, 2019
3.5/4 88% Capernaum (Capharnaüm) (2018) 'Capernaum' is a brutal and hard movie to digest; it also is a harder movie to forget. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 13, 2019
2.5/4 68% Happy Death Day 2U (2019) An appealing aspect of the film is the comfort and familiarity it affords. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 12, 2019
1/4 20% The Remarkable Life of John Weld (2018) The movie itself simply skims the surface of Weld's life. For a man who supposedly led such as "remarkable" life, the movie is very tame and simplistic. It needed to delve deeper into the man. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 7, 2019
3/4 94% The Golem (2019) It captures an era in which Jews - as they have throughout history - are persecuted for simply existing and because they make easy scapegoats. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 5, 2019
3/4 93% Cold War (Zimna wojna) (2018) Throughout, though, the tone remains melancholy - and not simply because the film was shot in black and white. An unhappy pall hangs over the movie, keeping the lovers from basking in true happiness. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2019
3/4 93% Stan & Ollie (2019) A slight whiff of melancholy looms over "Stan & Ollie," but it is tempered by the endearing and spot-on performances by Steven Coogan and John C. Reilly. Both do much more than impersonate their characters - they inhabit them. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 22, 2019
1.5/4 37% Glass (2019) "Glass" ... begins to crack after the first 20-plus minutes and shatters before the 129-minute fade-out, leaving behind shards of unfulfilled plot points, a convoluted story and a messy, lazy script ... - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 17, 2019
1.5/4 72% Destroyer (2018) An odor of unpleasantness permeates the entire movie, which is off-putting. Mostly everything about this movie is morally ugly and corrupt. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2019
3/4 73% The Standoff at Sparrow Creek (2019) 'The Standoff at Sparrow Creek' is sparked by crackling and lean dialogue that lays the foundation for understanding the various militiamen and their motivations for joining the group. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2019
3/4 85% A Boy Called Sailboat (2018) The key to the movie is how Nugent handles the song Sailboat creates for his grandmother. We never hear him play it or sing it; the screen grows silent when he performs. All we see are the reactions of those who hear the music and his voice. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2019
2.5/4 73% On the Basis of Sex (2019) The movie's major flaw is that it hews too close to the conventional tropes of the biopic genre; instead, it should be as groundbreaking as its subject. ... - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2019
3.5/4 94% If Beale Street Could Talk (2019) 'Beale Street' is more a mood piece than a plot-driven movie. Jenkins leads you to become emotionally invested in Tish and Fonny. You wish them a bright future, even though you know - with each passing minute - that their chances continue to fade. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2019
2/4 66% Vice (2018) Nothing is said about Cheney's formative years, his parents - or how or where he acquired his amoral nature. It is as though he simply sprung out of the earth, fully grown. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2018
1.5/4 65% Aquaman (2018) The latest movie from the DC Universe is an embarrassing shamble that is highlighted by clunky dialogue, characters who constantly shout their dialogue and hackneyed CGI special effects that look as if interns created them. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2018
3/4 31% Welcome to Marwen (2018) It is a poignant movie that will touch your heart and, despite some somber aspects, spotlight the goodness and compassion of others who unite to help lift a friend out of the mental quagmire in which he is drowning. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2018
1.5/4 80% Ben is Back (2018) 'Ben Is Back' fails because the elder Hedges decided to travel the conventional route - putting commercialism ahead of truth and perception. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2018
3/4 78% Mary Poppins Returns (2018) Blunt is the movie's backbone. She is wise, witty and mischievous - with a twinkle in her eye. She is not so much the film's protagonist, as she is the engine who, with a few words or a gesture, directs people to the right path. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2018
2.5/4 62% Mary Queen of Scots (2018) Instead, we get a talkative "Masterpiece Theater"-like production that takes a ... feminist slant to illustrate the difficulties women monarchs had to endure in the 16th century - and to ham-fistedly exclaim what we already know - ... it's a man's world. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2018
3.5/4 97% Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) The story is secondary to Miles' journey of finding the resolve, strength and belief in himself needed to become a Spider-Man. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2018
3/4 94% The Favourite (2018) The three main performances are delightful to behold. Colman's unpredictability and her constant shifts in mood and tone are extraordinary to watch. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2018
3.5/4 96% Roma (2018) You allow the movie's sights and smells to envelop you in a world surrounded by turmoil and tragedy but held together by love and loyalty. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2018
3/4 80% At Eternity's Gate (2018) Seeing the world through van Gogh's eyes makes "At Eternity's Gate" compelling viewing. At times, colors jump out at you, while other sequences are muted and bleak. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2018
2.5/4 52% Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle (2018) 'Mowgli' is a solid feature mostly because of its technical acumen. Otherwise, it really adds nothing worthwhile to a story that has been filmed many times before. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2018
3/4 98% Border (Gräns) (2018) From the outset, you know that Tina is different. Smartly, director Ali Abbasi takes his time: at first, slowly creating a mystery about Tina; then, leisurely revealing bits and pieces about her true identity ... - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2018
3.5/4 90% Maria By Callas (2018) Even if you don't know a note of opera - or care about it - "Maria by Callas" is worth seeing to learn about a 20th-century icon who ignited stages with her voice and her passion. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 28, 2018
3/4 79% Green Book (2018) 'Green Book' rests on the shoulders of Ali and Mortensen. Their trajectory is quite familiar - two people with nothing in common, who, thrown together, form a bond and come to appreciate their differences. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2018
3/4 88% Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) The movie is basically a sweet confection that, like this year's "Ready Player One," relies heavily on nostalgia and pop-culture references to propel it. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2018
3/4 94% Wildlife (2018) From the outset, Dano's direction is nicely understated. Joe realizes something is wrong between his parents, but he does not know what it is or why. He simply feels the tension in the household. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 15, 2018
2/4 37% Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (2018) Somehow, and perhaps, by magic, the movie does indeed entertain - though you really need to be familiar with the writings of J.K. Rowling and Harry Potter lore to fully appreciate this prequel. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 15, 2018
2/4 40% The Girl in the Spider's Web (2018) Unfortunately that is not who Salander is. It's like stripping her of her all-black wardrobe and putting her in a ball gown. The two simply do not go together. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 8, 2018
3.5/4 81% Boy Erased (2018) 'Boy Erased' is a horror film. Instead of people being murdered or mutilated, the soul and psyche are assaulted. Guilt and words are the armaments used to mentally maim those being treated. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 7, 2018
2/4 70% The Happy Prince (2018) We see only flashes of what made him a literary giant. The movie lacks insight and context about Wilde's life and behavior. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 7, 2018
3.5/4 84% Monrovia, Indiana (2018) Watching "Monrovia, Indiana" is like driving or walking around the town and the surrounding area, stopping at various points to sit in and listen to the residents and observe their daily lives. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 2, 2018
3.5/4 98% Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) McCarthy embodies a loner, yearning for but afraid to reach a connection. Beneath her brittleness is a vulnerability aching for acceptance, respect and - most of all - love. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 1, 2018
2.5/4 61% Bohemian Rhapsody (2018) While "Bohemian Rhapsody" soars at covering the band's talent as songwriters, musicians and onstage performers, it fails to explain the source of Mercury's lyrical gifts, his ostentatious personality and gargantuan self-confidence and self-centeredness. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 1, 2018
3/4 69% Beautiful Boy (2018) Chalamet makes you want to protectively embrace Nic, while simultaneously sternly lecture him about his choices. His Nic frustrates you, yet you also want to care for him. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2018
2.5/4 79% Halloween (2018) Green and the writers expend a lot of energy reminding us of moments from the original, while also struggling to give the movie momentum. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 18, 2018
3.5/4 97% The Hate U Give (2018) 'The Hate U Give' works to present the story in a balanced manner. The police officer who did the shooting is not demonized - in fact, he is barely seen after the incident. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 17, 2018
2.5/4 80% 22 July (2018) '22 July' requires more hot-blooded outrage and consternation. If I wanted a dispassionate retelling of this heinous crime, I would have read newspaper articles. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 14, 2018
3/4 87% First Man (2018) Ryan Gosling's portrayal of Armstrong captures the all-business, single-mindedness of the man, as well as his emotional impassiveness. ... And while this may be an accurate portrait ... it does not afford the audience the opportunity to fully embrace him. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2018
3.5.4 100% Bathtubs Over Broadway (2018) The fun of "Bathtubs Over Broadway" is in learning the reach of these productions. It seems thousands of companies - large and small - produced them to present to their executives and sales staffs at annual regional and national gatherings. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2018
3/4 No Score Yet Painless (2018) 'Painless' is an understated, low-key indie film that explores the psyche of an individual who knows he is different from the vast majority of people and refuses to accept that he cannot be fixed. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2018
3.5/4 92% The Old Man & the Gun (2018) The movie is an old-fashioned star vehicle, catered to Redford's laid-back approach. As Tucker, Redford uses his personality to charm not only Spacek's widowed Jewel, a few bank managers and tellers - but us as well. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2018
2.5/4 29% Venom (2018) As Eddie, Hardy sounds like he is doing one of those exercises in which an actor practices pronunciation with marbles in his mouth. His Venom voice sounds like Darth Vader trying to burb. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 4, 2018
3.5/4 90% A Star Is Born (2018) (Cooper) continually - and wisely - puts her in the spotlight, allowing the camera to caress Gaga. Many times Cooper tracks his camera in on Gaga's face, emphasizing her eyes, which - in this case - are windows to her soul. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 3, 2018
1.5/4 67% The House with a Clock in Its Walls (2018) Watching "The House with a Clock in the Walls" makes you wish you were a magician, warlock or witch, so you could speed up time to make the movie's 100-plus minutes zoom by in a flash. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 20, 2018
2.5/4 64% Lizzie (2018) Macneill sets most of the movie within the Borden house and small barn, where Lizzie routinely flees to for solitude. He envelops the entire film in a dysfunctional cocoon of oppression, resentment and sexual frustration. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 19, 2018
1.5/4 32% The Predator (2018) The movie is the latest iteration of this franchise, which began in 1987 with "Predator." Several sequels and offshoots followed, until we've reached the point that we should have expected an "Abbott and Costello Meet Predator"-type of spinoff. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 13, 2018
3.5/4 85% The Wife (2018) Close's performance is magnificent; the myriad of emotions she conveys is amazing. She definitely loves her husband, but she also reveals the bitterness and resentment that has festered inside her during their more than 30 years together. - Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN) EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 12, 2018