Daniel Barnes

Daniel Barnes
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
Daniel Barnes is a Sacramento-based film critic and podcast host, as well as a member of the San Francisco Film Critics Circle. His work appears regularly in the Sacramento News & Review, The Sacramento Bee, E Street Film Society and other print and online publications across the country.

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
1/5 No Score Yet Holiday Engagement (A Holiday Engagement) (2011) Comedy professionals like Shelley Long and Sam McMurray are powerless against the film's flat tone and bland presentation. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 22, 2020
1.5/5 90% The Trial of the Chicago 7 (2020) The Trial of the Chicago 7 almost plays like a parody of Aaron Sorkin-style self-satisfaction, only it's written and directed by the real Sorkin, so it's terrible. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
1.5/5 92% Da 5 Bloods (2020) Da 5 Bloods accelerates Spike Lee's devolution into paranoid incoherence. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
1.5/5 73% Mulan (2020) Disney continues its insufferable series of live-action adaptations of animated classics with the dreary Mulan. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
1/5 80% The Old Guard (2020) Starring a half-asleep Charlize Theron, The Old Guard is another of Netflix's misguided attempts to launch a blockbuster franchise. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
3.5/5 70% Tenet (2020) Nolan at his most thrilling and semi-comprehensible. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
3.5/5 81% I'm Thinking of Ending Things (2020) Charlie Kaufman in full wormhole-of-the-mind mode. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
3.5/5 95% First Cow (2020) With this low-flame anti-western, Reichardt recreates the bleakest of dystopias: a world without butter. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
4/5 97% Buoyancy (2020) Australian filmmaker Rodd Rathjen makes the debut of the year with this harrowing story of slavery at sea. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
4/5 92% Bacurau (Nighthawk) (2020) Anti-colonialist fury rendered as psychedelia-tinged exploitation, and with Udo Kier to boot? Count me in. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
4/5 88% The Truth (La vérité) (2020) Japanese filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda's playful and thoughtful foray into cinephilia-fueled Franco-existentialism. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
4.5/5 99% Wolfwalkers (2020) Profound and humane. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
3.5/5 93% Another Round (Druk) (2020) Mikkelsen excels as Martin, a depressed high school teacher who tries to turn his life around through experimental alcoholism. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2020
3/5 95% To the Ends of the Earth (Tabi no Owari Sekai no Hajimari) (2020) Aside from Maeda's multifaceted lead performance and a few compelling sequences, the film feels somewhat lightweight. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 17, 2020
1/5 22% Lucky Numbers (2000) Many gifted comedic actors flail their way miserably through this trite, tone-deaf nonsense. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 9, 2020
2.5/5 97% Sound of Metal (2020) Riz Ahmed delivers a solid performance as Ruben, a heavy metal drummer dealing with hearing loss in this otherwise pedestrian therapy drama. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2020
1/5 5% Christmas With the Kranks (2004) This exhausting parade of white people's Christmas problems offers only banality, blandness, and the most desperately unfunny sitcom hijinks imaginable. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2020
1/5 No Score Yet Speed Kills (2018) An incomprehensibly incompetent pseudo-biopic. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 4, 2020
3.5/5 100% City Hall (2020) While it hardly ranks among Wiseman's best work, it should satisfy anyone who appreciates his methodical, unsentimental and democratic approach to documentary filmmaking. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 16, 2020
2/5 48% Elvira, Mistress of the Dark (1988) This one-note vehicle throws ambiguity and subtlety out the window in favor of a barrage of unfunny boob jokes. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 3, 2020
3.5/5 70% Q (1982) A mix of familiar schlock and unusual invention, Q gets a major boost from Michael Moriarity's Method-style performance as the film's scat-singing anti-hero. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 3, 2020
1/5 No Score Yet 365 Days (365 dni) (2020) This repugnant Fifty Shades knockoff plays like an erotic rewrite of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 29, 2020
2/5 No Score Yet Dangerous Men (2005) Over 20 years in the making, Dangerous Men is wildly inept in a manner so unique that it's almost visionary. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 1, 2020
2/5 No Score Yet Think Big (1990) Think Big offers all the generic entertainment you would expect from a film produced by a company named Motion Picture and distributed by a company called Media. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 18, 2020
1/5 25% Fathers' Day (1997) This thoroughly sad and lazy comedy pairs Robin Williams and Billy Crystal as would-be fathers searching for a Sugar Ray-obsessed teenage wastoid. Unfunny non-hijinx ensue. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 4, 2020
1/5 13% Dolittle (2020) A spectacularly ugly exercise in focus-groupthink that tries to please everyone, and thus inevitably pleases no one. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 21, 2020
1/5 40% Backdraft 2 (2019) Unfortunately, there is no reason to care about anyone onscreen other than nostalgia for a 30-year-old movie that no one likes or remembers. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 7, 2020
3/5 32% Krull (1983) Genre-hopping director Yates was never going to make a cookie-cutter Star Wars clone, and the soundstage stuff feels incredibly clunky. However, the film comes to life whenever it travels outside of the studio, and generally exudes old-fashioned charm. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 23, 2020
1/5 10% Street Fighter (1994) Offensive and annoying. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 9, 2020
2/5 51% Destination Wedding (2018) Reeves and Ryder get miscast as brittle, misanthropic loners connecting during a dreaded wedding weekend. The film demands congratulations for having a vocabulary, but the nonstop jabber is merely time-filling, sub-Kevin Smith prattle. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted May 26, 2020
1/5 No Score Yet Deadfall (1993) Most of the screentime goes to Michael Biehn, who brings all the gravitas of Mr. Bean to his hardboiled con man role. As far as Cage goes over the top, Biehn goes just as far under the bottom. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted May 12, 2020
2.5/5 No Score Yet Megaforce (1982) A 65-minute movie that is 99 minutes long, Megaforce feels like the unaired pilot for an unwatchable TV show. The opening credits tout the use of Introvision and Zoptic, both presumably street words for cocaine. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 28, 2020
3/5 82% Forbidden Zone (1980) It's frequently offensive and never clever, but it remains a unique and strangely magical movie. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 14, 2020
3/5 90% The Wolf Man (1941) Ironically, The Wolf Man is stronger and creepier in the scenes without the wolf man. - Sacramento News & Review EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 13, 2020
1/5 20% Cats (2019) A money pit of terrible ideas executed terribly, Cats stands as a monument to ineptitude and unimaginativeness. Everything looks disturbingly wrong from the very first frame right through to the very last. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 31, 2020
1/5 6% Exit to Eden (1994) Every actor looks rightly embarrassed. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 26, 2020
1/5 No Score Yet Simon Sez (1999) A superspy action-comedy too brain-dead to even qualify as a James Bond knockoff. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 26, 2020
3.5/5 100% Otac na Sluzbenom Putu (When Father Was Away on Business) (1985) It's not a particularly dynamic film, but I liked Kusturica's compact camera moves and bleary sense of whimsy. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 26, 2020
3/5 No Score Yet Suzanne's Career (1963) (1963) Rohmer's real fascination is with the line between inaction and moral decision. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 26, 2020
1/5 16% Krippendorf's Tribe (1998) A hateful, disgusting and amoral travesty. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 26, 2020
2.5/5 91% How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014) How to Train Your Dragon 2 groans with the strain of stretching a cute concept too far. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 26, 2020
4/5 76% Welcome To New York (2015) The contrast between Ferrara's seething hot rage and the cold, clean gloom of his images remains compelling throughout. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
3.5/5 97% Mustang (2015) Ergüven imbues Mustang with the infectious spirit of youth and the casual assurance of a seasoned veteran. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
3.5/5 73% Dodes'ka-den (Dodesukaden) (1970) It was his long-awaited return after a string of high-profile projects withered on the vine, and also his first film shot in color. A sense of release is evident from the opening shots, as Kurosawa splashes colors across the screen like an action painter. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
3/5 65% Equus (1977) Lumet was a director who rose or fell based on the quality of his source material and collaborators. He served the demands of the story, rather than demanding that the story serve his esoteric vision or personal style. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
4.5/5 100% Kohayagawa-ke no aki (The End of Summer) (Early Autumn) (1961) There is a through-line about an old-school sake brewery barely holding on against a giant conglomerate, and we feel Ozu's fear that small-batch sake will expire along with his own eternally patient and culturally astute approach to cinema. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
3/5 No Score Yet The First Legion (1951) An unexpectedly complex examination of faith and doubt. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
1/5 10% Freddy Got Fingered (2001) Freddy Got Fingered wants to shock you out of your middlebrow complacency, but it's never disturbing, only sad. That's not to say that Green didn't make exactly the film he wanted to make. It's just that Green is a pathetically one-note provocateur. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
1/5 46% Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (2012) It's a 9/11 version of Life is Beautiful, or a Forrest Gump on antidepressants if you prefer. I prefer to vomit. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020
4/5 97% Paris, Texas (1984) Wenders articulates his slightly romanticized, "outsider's" idea of the lonely American west, a place of spiritual emptiness and surreal beauty. - Dare Daniel EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2020