J. R. Jones Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

J. R. Jones

J. R. Jones
J. R. Jones's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Chicago Reader

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
86% Ingrid Goes West (2017) Few movies have captured as vividly the humbling sense of social media as a gigantic party welcoming everyone but us.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2017
93% Logan Lucky (2017) The movie is smart and funny, though ultimately it's less noteworthy as an entertainment than as a marketing concept.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2017
31% The Only Living Boy in New York (2017) [Pierce] Brosnan is especially good: he's been chasing critical respect ever since he signed off as James Bond. ‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2017
73% Patti Cake$ (2017) The movie unfolds in a dead-end working-class community (Bergen County, New Jersey), with a nobody protagonist proving her worth through the strength, elegance, and wisdom of her rhymes.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2017
83% The Trip to Spain (2017) It's like the Fast and the Furious movies, but with celebrity impressions instead of hot rods.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2017
73% Landline (2017) Like [Obvious Child], this one benefits from Slate's ample charm and comic timing, though they've been funneled into a more conventional coming-of-age story.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 27, 2017
89% Devdas (2002) The story, adapted from a 1917 novel by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhye, seldom rises above melodrama. But the sets and costumes are intoxicating.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
96% Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe (2017) This intelligent biopic is kept aloft by Josef Hader's sensitive performance as the kind, gentlemanly Zweig.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
88% Lady Macbeth (2017) The endless scenes of women being barked at, beaten, and dehumanized make this an unlikely date movie, but they lay the ground for a mighty revenge that earns the heroine her Shakespearean nickname.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
99% City of Ghosts (2017) Matthew Heineman gets up close and personal with some of the RBSS members, who live with the daily threat of violent retribution and in some scenes comment from the cloistered security of German or Turkish safe houses.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
93% Dunkirk (2017) As a big-screen experience this can be overwhelming, especially when characters are trapped below oncoming planes or inside beleaguered sea vessels; few war movies have communicated more viscerally how it feels to be a sitting duck.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
75% 13 Minutes (Elser) (2017) Conspiracy theories surrounded the Elser plot for years, and his political motives have been debated; as scripted here, he acted alone and purely from moral conviction, which Friedel conveys in a passionate, charismatic performance.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
51% Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017) Two beautiful, sarcastic time travelers [are] on a mission to locate an intergalactic MacGuffin. They succeed, but I couldn't have cared less one way or the other because I was too busy gaping at the vast population of exotic aliens.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
3/4 No Score Yet Les Choses de la Vie (1970) One thing you can say for Sautet: he knew how to shoot a speeding automobile.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
3/4 76% The Little Hours (2017) Whether or not Baena does right by Boccaccio, he definitely does right by Aubrey Plaza, his girlfriend and indie comedy's reigning queen of mean. ‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2017
100% My Journey Through French Cinema (Voyage À Travers Le Cinéma Français) (2017) More distinctive and revealing are the fannish tributes to tough guys Jean Gabin and Eddie Constantine, innovative composers Maurice Jaubert and Joseph Kosma, and forgotten auteurs Edmond T. Gréville and Pierre Schoendoerffer.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 13, 2017
71% The Commune (Kollektivet) (2017) The Commune turns out to be a fairly predictable exercise in neoliberal backlash, as a bunch of free-love radicals crash on the rocks of their own enlightenment.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 13, 2017
93% War for the Planet of the Apes (2017) The more engrossing intraspecies relationships have disappeared, and the simian ones lack the verbal wit that animated the original series.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 13, 2017
3/4 68% The Journey (2017) The Journey functions primarily as a hopeful story of people overcoming their differences, but it also looks at how each man rationalized his own role in the endless violence.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jul 6, 2017
95% Radio Dreams (2017) The characters' anxious wait for the superstars to arrive provides Jalali with enough tension to sustain his succession of low-key, character-oriented gags.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 29, 2017
98% The Big Sick (2017) The movie chugs along on the chemistry between Nanjiani, acquitting himself well as a droll leading man, and Zoe Kazan as his sunny, devoted sweetheart, though they're completely upstaged by Holly Hunter and Ray Romano as the girlfriend's parents‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 29, 2017
79% The Beguiled (2017) This new adaptation by Sofia Coppola unfolds from a more feminine sensibility, and like her first and best feature, The Virgin Suicides, it sets out to expose the inner dynamics and frustrated sexuality of a small, mysterious cloister of women.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 29, 2017
86% Moka (2017) The premise is hardly fresh, but screenwriters Antonin Martin-Hilbert and Frédéric Mermoud tease it out so gradually that you may find yourself hooked anyway.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 22, 2017
44% The Bad Batch (2017) This gaudy postapocalyptic adventure from writer-director Ana Lily Amirpour never stops moving, its heroine bouncing back and forth between the revelers and the flesh eaters, but it never really gets anywhere either.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 22, 2017
48% Rough Night (2017) Scarlett Johansson works overtime to salvage this dismal Bridesmaids knockoff, heavily informed by The Hangover and even Weekend at Bernie's.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 22, 2017
100% Dawson City: Frozen Time (2017) Bill Morrison, whose extraordinary documentary Decasia turned decomposing film stock into the stuff of avante-garde reverie, returns with another staggering journey into the past.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2017
78% The Hero (2017) Elliott invests his character with such authority that the movie resounds like a pair of bootheels.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2017
75% A Woman's Life (Une vie) (2017) Guy de Maupassant's first novel, about a trusting French noblewoman who follows her husband and then her grown son into financial ruin, gets a slow, sensual, impressionistic treatment from director Stéphane Brizé.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2017
85% Band Aid (2017) [The] glib, zinger-laden bickering is more wearisome than funny and never adds up to a believable relationship on the rocks.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2017
92% I, Daniel Blake (2017) Writer-director Ken Loach has been making movies about the British working class since the mid-60s, and this masterful dramatic feature proves that even after all these years he can still work himself up into righteous, white-hot rage.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Jun 8, 2017
3/4 94% Citizen Jane: Battle for the City (2017) Most good documentaries are powered by conflict, and you couldn't ask for a struggle more elemental or relevant to our time than the one chronicled in Citizen Jane: Battle for the City.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 25, 2017
80% Like Crazy (La pazza gioia) (2017) Sexy and grand, Tedeschi shines in the Cuckoo's Nest comedy of the early scenes, though the movie's anarchic spirit is sapped by the steadily mounting melodrama.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 18, 2017
71% Alien: Covenant (2017) Despite a few remnants of the earlier film's obscure genesis story, most of the action in Covenant plays like an elaboration on the original Alien (1979).‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 18, 2017
86% The Lovers (2017) There's really only one joke here -- the 50-ish spouses are every bit as confused, horny, and insecure as kids themselves -- but the two gifted leads play it so gracefully that it sustains the entire movie. ‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 11, 2017
35% Snatched (2017) Schumer gets the best moments in the movie's first half as her character suffers various dating embarrassments; Ike Barinholtz gets them in the second as her geeky older brother.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 11, 2017
79% Chuck (2017) His fall and redemption are a little too familiar to carry the movie, but there's an odd hall-of-mirrors quality to all this: prone to quoting Requiem for a Heavyweight, Wepner is transmogrified into the movies himself.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 11, 2017
97% Burden (2017) This engrossing documentary profile of Los Angeles artist Chris Burden, who died in 2015, focuses mainly on his notorious performance pieces.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 11, 2017
82% Risk (2017) With the Snowden and Assange films, Poitras is truly reporting from the cusp of history, but such proximity to one's subject can be disorienting.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 4, 2017
85% My Entire High School Sinking Into the Sea (2017) The animation set pieces scattered throughout the movie are frequently inspired, pulling in all manner of media and materials, and the backgrounds can be dazzling.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 4, 2017
92% Finding Oscar (2017) Directed by Ryan Suffern, this harrowing documentary focuses on the December 1982 massacre perpetrated by the Guatemalan military against the little village of Dos Erres, whose residents.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 4, 2017
51% The Dinner (2017) The premise for this chamber drama is inherently suspenseful, but not enough to sustain a movie so languorous that its chapters are demarcated by the various dinner courses, from aperitif to dessert. (After an hour I felt like loosening my belt.)‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted May 4, 2017
26% Unforgettable (2017) Heigl works overtime to humanize the resentful mom-her face is like an old-fashioned cash register with the prices popping up-but she's more fun to watch as the story grows ugly and violent, and she unleashes the demon within.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 27, 2017
89% Norman (Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer) (2017) For all the shining steel and glass, the movie has the old-world feel of a Jewish folktale, rooted not in a particular time or place but in the moral universe.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 27, 2017
86% Nise: The Heart of Madness (Nise: O Coração da Loucura) (2017) No less then seven screenwriters contributed to the script, which has its powerful moments but so deifies Silveira that the movie turns into a black-and-white struggle between a caring, enlightened woman and a cadre of hard-hearted, benighted men.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 27, 2017
No Score Yet La folle histoire de Max et Léon (2016) Eventually this tonal anachronism creeps into the story details... Possibly these are gags, but that uncertainty is the inevitable outcome of having no fixed perspective on your material.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 27, 2017
100% The Illinois Parables (2016) This accomplished essay film may focus on our state, but Stratman's real concern is state power in the larger sense...Connecting all this are sweeping aerial shots that capture the beauty of the plains without obscuring the blood spilled to claim them.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 27, 2017
60% Cezanne and I (Cézanne et Moi) (2017) The lifelong friendship between painter Paul Cézanne and novelist Emile Zola gets a sensitive but occasionally soapy treatment from French writer-director Danièle Thompson (Jet Lag).‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 27, 2017
87% The Lost City of Z (2017) Writer-director James Gray stages all this with an impressive sense of narrative scale.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 20, 2017
67% Free Fire (2017) Wheatley and Amy Jump, his frequent screenwriting partner, can't afford to let the action flag for long, so the characters never amount to much more than their immediate tactical advantage or disadvantage.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 20, 2017
2/4 70% Gifted (2017) As scripted, Evelyn is too vicious to be persuasive, and Flynn undercuts her morally by stressing her lust for recognition.‐ Chicago Reader
Read More | Posted Apr 13, 2017