Ian Freer

Ian Freer
Ian Freer's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Empire Magazine Time Out
Publications: Empire Magazine, Time Out

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
3/5 68% The White Crow (2019) An interesting, challenging mess. The White Crow offers lots that's impressive - Ivenko as Nureyev, the dance sequences, a knuckle-whitening last 20 minutes - but can't render it in a dramatically engaging way. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 19, 2019
4/5 92% Benjamin (2018) Part film industry satire, part winning love story, Benjamin is low-key and shambling but emerges funny, bittersweet and affecting. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 11, 2019
2/5 50% Fisherman's Friends (2019) Bolting together a fish-out-of-water story and a victory-of-the-underdog yarn, Fisherman's Friends delivers on neither front. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 11, 2019
4/5 90% The Kindergarten Teacher (2018) Small-scale and slow, The Kindergarten Teacher works best as a showcase for the brilliance of Maggie Gyllenhaal. Adding another complex character to her resume, it's another reminder she is among the best actors working today. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 8, 2019
4/5 93% Ray & Liz (2019) Creating an astute sense of atmosphere and detail that come together to make meaning, Richard Billingham marks himself out as a filmmaker to watch. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 8, 2019
3/5 73% Triple Frontier (2019) Triple Frontier is engaging in parts with well-mounted action. But the characters lack definition and you can't help but think an old timer like Howard Hawks or Sam Fuller might have done it better in half the time. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 6, 2019
2/5 19% Serenity (2019) Badly scripted, strangely acted and poorly pitched, there is so much to pick over it's hard to know where to begin. Sometimes the best of bold intentions are just not enough. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 1, 2019
3/5 68% Isn't It Romantic (2019) Isn't It Romantic had us at hello but loses its spell when it has to develop its plot. Not as smart or sharp as you'd hope, it still delivers a lot of fun for those who can't resist a bad Katherine Heigl flick. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 1, 2019
3/5 75% Old Boys (2018) A likable debut from Toby MacDonald, *Old Boys* adds a new lick to old tropes and delivers a mostly quirky appealing take on young love and the need to speak in your own voice. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 25, 2019
4/5 70% Cold Pursuit (2019) A typically taciturn turn from Neeson is surrounded by a colourful cast, gallows humour and complete disrespect for cinematic stereotypes. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 20, 2019
4/5 89% Capernaum (Capharnaüm) (2018) With two astonishing child performances, Capernaum is a real heart-breaker. It can make Ken Loach look happy-go-lucky but it's a gripping, sympathetic cry for the dispossessed. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 19, 2019
3/5 83% Jellyfish (2018) Jellyfish is a familiar but compassionately drawn portrait of hardscrabble lives, centred by a terrific performance by Liv Hill. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 16, 2019
3/5 55% Mektoub, My Love: Canto Uno (2017) Kechiche's camera consistently ogles his female cast but he remains a terrific director of actors, the intimacy and authenticity conveying a real lust for life to sweeten the hefty running time. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 16, 2019
3/5 81% Instant Family (2018) For all its formula, Instant Family is a winning confection, unafraid to go to unexpected dramatic places and elevated by Byrne's gift as a comedy foil and Moner's lively but subtle turn. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 12, 2019
2/5 48% Escape Room (2019) Escape Room is like The Crystal Maze with more death. It's fun at the start then loses its way, but it'll do until 'Flossing: The Movie' comes along. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2019
4/5 98% Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) A moving hymn to outsiders, this thrives on two criminally good performances from Melissa McCarthy and Richard E. Grant. It also confirms Marielle Heller as one of the brightest directorial talents around. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 28, 2019
4/5 94% Burning (Beoning) (2018) Slow and difficult to get a hold on, Burning emerges as a brilliantly made one-off; puzzling, intelligent and ultimately mesmerising. And Jong-seo Jun is a revelation. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 28, 2019
4/5 98% On Her Shoulders (2018) On Her Shoulders is a compassionate, level-headed portrait of a remarkable woman. What it lacks in filmmaking fireworks, it makes up for in the sheer magnetism and moxie of its hero. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2019
2/5 No Score Yet London Unplugged (2018) The overriding feeling is of a film school degree show: good intentions and the odd impressive moment, but little that ultimately delivers. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 22, 2019
4/5 83% The Raft (2018) An absorbing portrait of a bold (or foolhardy) historical experiment that hits many of today's hot-button topics, dominated by a compelling and complex central figure. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 22, 2019
4/5 100% One Cut of the Dead (Kamera o tomeru na!) (2017) One Cut Of The Dead is a true original, a fresh take on the zombie apocalypse drama and much more besides. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
2/5 13% Life Itself (2018) Despite good moments and an ambition to reach for the profound, Life Itself settles for trite, sentimental and patience testing. A killer cast deserve better. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
3/5 100% An Impossible Love (Un amour impossible) (2018) An Impossible Love is a modern take on melodrama, full of strong moments, approachable storytelling and anchored by a terrific turn from Efira wrapped up in a stinging rebuke of class rejection. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
4/5 93% The Favourite (2018) Weird, dirty but accessible, The Favourite is a perfectly performed, thrillingly made period picture that morphs before your very eyes. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2018
3/5 32% Welcome to Marwen (2018) A genuine oddity, Welcome To Marwen may not hit the emotional highs but mixes high-concept fun with a sincere attempt to describe trauma in an original visceral way. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2018
3/5 84% Creed II (2018) Creed II is to Creed what the Rocky sequels are to the original: a more generic, less textured take on familiar boxing movie tropes. The difference, it seems, is Coogler. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 16, 2018
3/5 37% Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (2018) The second chapter in JK Rowling's five-part story, it's a film stuffed with characters, big moments and impressive spectacle but still feels bizarrely underpowered. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 8, 2018
4/5 82% The Other Side of the Wind (2018) Orson Welles' final film is an infuriating, brilliant, personal sign off, filled with stunning images, wit and bravura to spare. In short it's everything you hoped it would be. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 5, 2018
3/5 80% 22 July (2018) 22 July takes a helicopter view of a terrifying, unthinkable tragedy, perhaps flying too high to capture all the nuance, complexities and emotion. Still it has great stretches and a terrific performance by Anders Danielsen Lie. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 8, 2018
2/5 29% Venom (2018) Venom is neither triumph nor train-wreck. It's a mediocre origin story, a superhero host that sadly fails to bond with its comedy parasite. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 3, 2018
1/5 38% Blue Iguana (2018) Blue Iguana grates on pretty much every level, a misjudged hodge-podge of ill-defined characters, tired filmmaking licks and an air of general unpleasantness. It also contains one of the worst shootouts in recent memory. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 2, 2018
3/5 78% Black '47 (2018) Daly's film is gripping enough to suggest Ireland's tragic backstory is a frontier full of resonant riches. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 25, 2018
4/5 88% American Animals (2018) American Animals is sharp, smart, often bravura filmmaking, a terrifically entertaining mix of fast facts and pulp fiction. But beneath the flash is a sad story of teens who feel their lives simply aren't good enough. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 4, 2018
3/5 72% The Children Act (2018) Another reminder, if one were needed, of the subtlety and skill of Emma Thompson's stratospheric talent. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 20, 2018
4/5 77% The Escape (2018) The Escape is not a comfortable watch. But it is a rewarding one, thanks to Dominic Savage's forensic investigation of a disintegrating marriage and career-best work by Gemma Arterton. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 30, 2018
4/5 93% First Reformed (2018) Schrader's best in yonks, a powerful meditation on faith's place in the modern world. Hawke, as a kind of Travis Bickle in a dog collar, gives one of the performances of the year. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 11, 2018
4/5 89% Pin Cushion (2018) Uneven in places, Pin Cushion nonetheless offers a moving meditation on what it feels like to be different, elevated by great work from Joanna Scanlan and newcomer Lily Newmark. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 11, 2018
64% Animal World (2018) It's overstuffed, disjointed and suffers from storytelling longueurs but there is so much filmmaking invention and spurts of nutty energy it adds up to a thoroughly enjoyable romp. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 29, 2018
4/5 100% Leave No Trace (2018) It is small and, story-wise, slight, but quietly powerful in its detail and compassion. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2018
4/5 76% In the Fade (Aus dem Nichts) (2017) It's flawed but powerful, mostly down to a revelatory performance from Diane Kruger. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2018
3/5 69% Ocean's 8 (2018) It lacks the jazzy swagger of Soderbergh's trio but delivers a fun, likeable romp built on the charm and charisma of its cast. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2018
4/5 95% The Breadwinner (2017) A rare animated film without a shred of sentimentality but bucket-loads of heart and soul. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted May 21, 2018
4/5 96% Filmworker (2018) Filmworker is an absorbing, important portrait of both a genius at work and the man behind the scenes who made the magic possible, whatever the cost to himself. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted May 15, 2018
2/5 35% I Feel Pretty (2018) I Feel Pretty is an intermittently funny vehicle for Schumer's talent that never really gets to grips with the ramifications of its high concept. Its heart is in the right place, but its head is somewhere else. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 18, 2018
4/5 86% Let the Sunshine In (Un beau soleil intérieur) (2018) Claire Denis' most conventionally entertaining film is a delight. And it's yet another reminder Juliette Binoche is an international treasure who should be cherished. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 17, 2018
4/5 95% A Quiet Place (2018) Like Aliens retooled as a militant librarian's fantasy, John Krasinski's relentless shocker thrives on a nifty premise. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 6, 2018
4/5 84% Beetlejuice (1988) Amazingly, it all still feels fresh, even though Burton has since become something of his own franchise since. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2018
2/5 35% Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House (2017) Mark Felt is a lacklustre staging of a fascinating episode in recent US history. Despite Neeson's strong presence, this is a deep throat that never finds its voice. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 20, 2018
4/5 96% Sweet Country (2018) Sweet Country is epic and personal, daring to tell a simple story in a challenging, arresting way. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2018
4/5 89% You Were Never Really Here (2018) Ramsay is now four for four, one of our most exciting filmmakers. If she could not leave it so long next time, that's just fine with us. - Empire Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2018