Grant Watson

Grant Watson
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
Grant Watson is a film critic based in Melbourne, Australia. He currently reviews contemporary and classic film for his own website FictionMachine, as well as the film review websites FilmInk and VCinema. Between 2003 and 2009 he wrote the film column The Bad Film Diaries for the science fiction journal Borderlands; for which he was awarded the William Atheling Jr Award for Science Fiction Criticism and Review on two occasions. He has also previously worked as the screen events manager at Western Australia's Film and Television Institute, where he curated numerous film programs and retrospectives.

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
3/10 46% Dumbo (2019) It is charmless, overly long, ugly to look at, and terribly boring. The only surprise here is how many opportunities were dropped. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 14, 2019
4/10 No Score Yet Visible Secret (2003) It's a film that's drunkenly slipped between two stools, and winds up not really pleasing anyone. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 13, 2019
9/10 80% At Eternity's Gate (2018) If you want to have a feature film dive into the head of an artist then have it be directed by an artist. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 11, 2019
3/10 23% The Ewok Adventure (1984) Historical interest, however, is really Caravan of Courage's only reason to be seen these days. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 10, 2019
8/10 88% Crackerjack (2013) It is beautifully calm, warmly humorous, and altogether very,veryAustralian. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 8, 2019
6/10 11% Season of the Witch (2011) More than a little silly, but it does have decent-enough entertainment value for its target audience. You'll know if you're in that audience. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 3, 2019
9/10 80% Cop Car (2015) This is a superb piece of film-making: tightly edited, fast-paced and incredibly entertaining. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2019
7/10 80% The Conjuring 2 (2016) The Conjuring 2 is a fun, effective horror movie, and further emphasises the franchise generally as one ripe for sequels and spin-offs. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2019
8/10 79% The Company of Wolves (1984) Once the initial narrative turbulence passes The Company of Wolves emerges as an innovative and memorable fantasy spectacle - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2019
4/10 57% The Commuter (2018) If you have a specific penchant for Liam Neeson shouting at people and punching them in the face, then The Commuter just might hold enough entertainment value to satisfy. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2019
8/10 No Score Yet The Man (Mesteren) (2017) This drama, small in scale and varied in tone, is quite simply a superb piece of work. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2019
8/10 90% Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) If you still get a kick out of seeing Spider-Man do his thing, this is a top-level effort on a par with Sam Raimi's much-loved Spider-Man 2. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 1, 2019
9/10 80% El Sheita Elli Fat (Winter of Discontent) (2013) The entire work feels overwhelmingly personal. It feels as if it genuinely matters. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 30, 2019
7/10 67% Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (2016) This solid, enjoyable blend of drama and comedy should not be overlooked simply because it failed to find an audience. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 27, 2019
5/10 20% The Cloverfield Paradox (2018) As a film in its own right The Cloverfield Paradox is a complicated mess. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 26, 2019
5/10 No Score Yet Chan mat (Claustraphobia) (Claustrophobia) (2008) There is plenty to appreciate about it, but nowhere near as much to enjoy. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 26, 2019
6/10 72% Christopher Robin (2018) It feels admirable rather than excellent, and once every so often it feels like an absolute delight. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 26, 2019
10/10 92% Children of Men (2006) You find yourself reaching for that terribly over-used and abused superlative: masterpiece. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 26, 2019
7/10 No Score Yet Dare mo mamotte kurenai (Nobody to Watch Over Me) (The Guardian) (2008) It is a solid, well-executed police drama. Its characters are interesting and flawed. The story progresses in fascinating directions. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 26, 2019
9/10 No Score Yet Figures in a Landscape (1971) Its innovations have led it to date much less obviously [...] indeed, it feels unexpectedly contemporary, and viscerally engaging to watch. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 24, 2019
6/10 No Score Yet Cargo (2010) Cargo is not a perfect film, but given its production budget and the comparative inexperience of its directors - this was their first feature - it is a fairly impressive piece of work. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 23, 2019
8/10 78% Captain Marvel (2019) It works spectacularly as a feminist text, in which a woman steps out from a patriarchal shadow and challenges a sexist male mentor in the process. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 23, 2019
5/10 No Score Yet Candleshoe (1977) The film feels weirdly underwhelming on its own merits. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 23, 2019
7/10 92% Fighting with My Family (2019) Writer/director Stephen Merchant has put together a straught-forward and broadly entertaining drama. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 23, 2019
9/10 98% Toy Story 4 (2019) Toy Story 4 is potentially the most adult film Pixar has ever made. Its emotions are complex. Its story does not make simple choices. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 20, 2019
6/10 73% The Perfection (2019) It works more than when it does not, and results in a relatively disposable piece of pop horror. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 19, 2019
9/10 72% Bringing Out the Dead (1999) There is no denying Scorsese is one of American cinema's most astonishing directors, but I honestly think it is high time Bringing Out the Dead was revisited and given another chance. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2019
10/10 100% The Bride of Frankenstein (1935) It is no surprise that Bride of Frankenstein is heralded as one of Hollywood's best-ever sequels: it does everything a good sequel should. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2019
8/10 91% Bridge of Spies (2015) Bridge of Spies is absolutely what it appears to be: an interesting story told well by talented people. That is sadly still all too rare among Hollywood studio filmmaking. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2019
7/10 93% Bumblebee (2018) If you like the Transformers, rest assured this is a good one. If you're exhausted by Hollywood franchise filmmaking, then this absolutely will not change your mind. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2019
8/10 No Score Yet The Sun's Burial (Taiyo no hakaba) (Tomb of the Sun) (1960) The Sun's Burial isn't merely bleak: it's a work of full-blown nihilism, so wilfully dark that the film's climax literally burns buildings to the ground. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2019
8/10 97% Dirty God (2019) It remains precarious and uncertain, much like real-life tragedy can be, and offers a powerfully performed and striking central performance by a promising new talent. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2019
8/10 No Score Yet Three Resurrected Drunkards (Kaette kita yopparai) (1968) This is such a striking film, and one wilfully difficult to pin down and categorise. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 16, 2019
7/10 No Score Yet Here Comes Hell (2019) Probably not quite accomplished enough to gain a cult status, Here Comes Hell is still a pretty great low-budget blend of comedy, horror, and period drama - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 10, 2019
6/10 37% Blair Witch (2016) Ask yourself: do you feel like watching another 90 minutes of The Blair Witch Project? Your answer will tell you all that you need to know about Blair Witch. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
2/10 14% Book of Shadows - Blair Witch 2 (2000) The film with which we are left is arguably one of the most disappointing horror sequels of all time. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
8/10 96% Blue Ruin (2014) Blue Ruin is a great low-budget thriller with an original voice and strong, realistic performances. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
5/10 41% Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) What is needed here is not reproduction, but rather reinvention: an American-targeted Godzilla film rebuilt from the ground up. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
7/10 75% Bloody Milk (Petit paysan) (2017) It is immediately obvious from the film's first act that it cannot have a happy ending; the only question is just dreadful the ending is going to get. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2019
6/10 83% Blockers (2018) It leaves one fairly unsatisfied: the film definitely rises above its premise, but the bottom line is that it simply does not rise enough. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2019
8/10 87% Blade Runner 2049 (2017) It does the unthinkable: takes one of the most popular cult films of all time and actually makes a sequel worthy of its name. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2019
7/10 No Score Yet Gun chung (Eye in the Sky) (Surveillance) (2007) There's huge potential in the film's premise [...] but that potential is never quite achieved. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 4, 2019
6/10 No Score Yet Kuroi taiyô (Black Sun) (2012) There is an energy to Black Sun that keeps it moving along at a fast pace, but it is a thorny, troublesome movie at the same. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 3, 2019
8/10 97% Black Panther (2018) This feels like a critically important film, and a huge step forward in giving an African voice to mainstream cinema. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 3, 2019
10/10 96% BlacKkKlansman (2018) BlacKkKlansman is one of the best American films of 2018, and a much-deserved mainstream smash for director Spike Lee. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 3, 2019
9/10 95% Bai ri yan huo (Black Coal, Thin Ice) (2015) This is a tightly wound, well characterised crime thriller. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2019
6/10 75% The BFG (2016) For Steven Spielberg it feels like a minor work: oddly out of synch with his more recent dramas and sub-standard to the blockbuster hits in his past. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2019
4/10 36% Beyond The Reach (2015) There is simply not enough logic or motivation to explain the film's second half, and it completely destroys the relatively promising work undertaken in the first. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2019
2/10 No Score Yet Beowulf (1999) Its ambition is considerably larger than its budget, resulting in a film that looks absolutely dreadful - and to be honest, its ambition is not particularly lofty. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2019
8/10 No Score Yet The Ball at the Anjo House (1947) It has a solid emotional core and is both directed and performed with great integrity. - Fiction Machine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2019