James Kendrick

James Kendrick
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
James Kendrick is the film and video critic at QNetwork.com, where he has been writing reviews since 1998. From 1996 to 1998, he wrote reviews at his own, now defunct, web site, "Charle Don't Surf!" He is also an associate professor of film and digital media at Baylor University and the author of three books.
Favorites:
Current All-Time Top 10 (Chronological Order)
Intolerance (D.W. Griffith, 1916)
The Wizard of Oz (Victor Fleming, 1939)
Citizen Kane (Orson Welles, 1941)
Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960)
Au hasard Balthazar (Robert Bresson, 1966)
Play Time (Jacques Tati, 1967)
2001: A Space Odyssey (Stanley Kubrick, 1968)
The Wild Bunch (Sam Peckinpah, 1969)
The Godfather (Francis Ford Coppola, 1972)
Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino, 1994)
Publications: Q Network Film Desk
Critics' Group: Online Film Critics Society
Location: Waco, Texas
Official Websites: qnetwork.com

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
3.5/4 100% History Is Made At Night (1937) a wild and entertaining mis-mash of styles, tones, and genres, a kind of barely controlled chaos reflected in its production - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2021
2.5/4 21% Thunder Force (2021) The plot is, unfortunately, bland and formulaic, which wouldn't be much of a problem except that it is too often intrudes on McCarthy and Spencer's buddy comedy antics, which is what really works. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2021
3/4 100% Merrily We Go to Hell (1932) not a romantic comedy, although it is often labeled as such, perhaps because it is focused on a marriage and was directed by the only female director to work consistently during Hollywood's classical studio era - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2021
3/4 53% The Final Countdown (1980) a unique merging of military drama and science fiction, and even if it doesn't always work, it presents such a fascinating scenario that you can't help but get sucked into its swirling vortex of unending and paradoxical "what if's?." - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2021
2.5/4 45% Tom Clancy's Without Remorse (2021) Sollima brings a dark visual intensity to the film, and the action sequences work on their own merit, but still fail to bring the various strands of the narrative together in an emotionally compelling way - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
3/4 93% Irma Vep (1996) However messy, conflicted, and cracked Irma Vep may be, it stands as a sometimes profound and always engaging portrait of film production on the edge. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
2.5/4 83% Cast a Dark Shadow (1957) The narrative drags a bit in the middle, but Bogarde is always on hand to inject some nasty energy - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
3/4 80% Wanted for Murder (1946) efficient and effective low-budget style, which makes good use of actual London locations and eschews anything overtly flashy - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
3.5/4 95% Memories of Murder (2003) Bong weaves a compelling narrative that is part police procedural, part political critique, and part examination of toxic misogyny in Korean culture - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
2.5/4 75% Godzilla vs. Kong (2021) Everything is big, bigger, and biggest, and while it gets redundant by the end, it is hard not to take pleasure in the sheer outlandishness of the mega-monster smackdowns. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
3.5/4 39% Southland Tales (2007) an insanely ambitious fever dream of a science fiction/political satire/anti-fantasy that roars at you with unapologetic gusto, inflaming the senses with its rich tapestry of post-millennial visuals and skewering of the Far Right and the Far Left - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
3/4 71% Zack Snyder's Justice League (2021) an indulgent deep, dark dive into superhero mythos, and Snyder leaves no stone unturned - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
3/4 98% One Night in Miami (2020) In such politically troubled times, where it seems that any political disagreement creates an unbreachable interpersonal rift, One Night in Miami shows the beauty of productive disagreement and dissent. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
4/4 95% Secrets & Lies (1997) a masterful dramedy about that wonderfully, terribly complex thing we call family - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 18, 2021
2.5/4 78% I Care a Lot (2021) if I Care a Lot is a success, its success lies in how it systematically constructs for us a loathsome protagonist and how unblinking it is in refusing to soften said character or give her any kind of redemptive story arc or even a hint of possible change. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2021
2.5/4 48% The Greatest Show on Earth (1952) the subplots are regularly interrupted by DeMille's extensive documentary footage of the circus, which would work much better if it were substantially shorter and therefore more clearly integrated into the drama - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 17, 2021
3/4 71% The Howling (1981) humorous and self-aware as it often is, The Howling fundamentally works as a scary-gory werewolf thriller, with Bottin's transformation effects casting a nearly hypnotic spell - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 16, 2021
3/4 100% Sophie Jones (2021) Jessica Barr nails Sophie's mix of unformed awkwardness and unearned confidence; the dialogue and interactions feel right and natural and true, and she never oversells a moment or works to make us like the character. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 16, 2021
3.5/4 96% The Amusement Park (2019) While fundamentally allegorical in nature, The Amusement Park is nevertheless a visceral film that puts into stark relief the manner in which the elderly are mistreated socially, psychologically, and physically. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 16, 2021
3.5/4 89% Man Push Cart (2006) a film in the neorealist vein, one of close observation and conviction that brings us into a world that many of those who live in larger cities see every day-right under their eyes-but probably rarely if ever stop to consider. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
2.5/4 69% The Big Boss (Tang shan da xiong) (1972) clear tension between Lo's desire for more comical violence (at one point Cheng throws a character through a wall, leaving a Looney Tunes-esque person-shaped hole) and Lee's desire for more realistic fighting - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3/4 83% Fist of Fury (Jing wu men) (1972) the violence is a mix of the realistic and the fantastical, with Lee's intense physicality giving the film an undeniable presence that also leaves room for Wei's preference for hyper-stylized action that defies the laws of physics - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
2.5/4 86% Return of the Dragon (The Way of the Dragon) (1974) hampered by a rather pedestrian plot and, more problematically, some awkward direction and an inconsistent tone that renders some parts of the film absurd while other parts work quite well - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3/4 95% Enter the Dragon (1973) Lee wanted to ensure that Enter the Dragon was not just a banal Hollywood production that exploited kung fu for action thrills, but was rather a vehicle for both himself as a performer and his philosophical worldview - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
1.5/4 46% Game of Death (1978) appropriates Lee's completed fight footage and awkwardly weds it to a hackneyed plot in order to squeeze whatever profits could still be wrung from his legacy - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3.5/4 95% Test Pattern (2021) shifts between present and past to punctuate the emotional and relational impact of the assault and to highlight how such an event forever alters our perception, even of those we love. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3.5/4 89% The Parallax View (1974) the quintessential paranoid conspiracy thriller of the Watergate era - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
2.5/4 68% Love Story (1970) It wears its heart on its sleeve and makes no apologies (remember what love means ...), and more than anything that is what audiences responded to then and continue to respond to today. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
2/4 28% Bliss (2021) While there are moments of engagement and some memorable images, Bliss simply doesn't hold together enough to make its ideas-however fascinating-stick. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3.5/4 100% Mandabi (1969) the surface simplicity of the plot reveals a wealth of detail about the difficulties imposed by Western norms on African life - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3/4 61% Son of the South (2021) There is nothing particularly new about its narrative or flashy in its production, but it tells its story well and conveys its importance without being moralistic. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3.5/4 No Score Yet The Ascent (1996) uses the nearly abstract depiction of the snow-choked landscape to strike us with bone-chilling intensity, but also transforming Sotnikov's experience into something that approaches the divine - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3.5/4 98% The Lost Weekend (1945) retains much of its dramatic power, largely due to Milland's uncompromising portrayal of a man in the thralls of sodden debasement - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3/4 80% The Night (2021) a film that doesn't just make us tense up and jump, but rather feel for the protagonists as they must face down all the demons they have tried to hide within - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
4/4 94% Nomadland (2021) an astonishing piece a work-a film that is both simple and profound, a genuine heir to the principled spirit of Italian neorealism - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
2.5/4 75% Rio Grande (1950) despite all that talent behind the camera, Rio Grande still strikes one primarily as a film that Ford just wanted to get done - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2021
3.5/4 88% News of the World (2020) elevated from a sturdy genre exercise into something much more philosophically weighty and emotionally rewarding - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2020
3.5/4 89% The Nest (2020) the dramatic tension is so finely wrought and expertly sustained that it's hard to begrudge Durkin's choice to undermine expectations while also delivering a film with a clear moral about the tragedy of never being satisfied - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2020
2.5/4 82% Mank (2020) For a film that wants to rescue a forgotten screenwriter from the ashbin of history and celebrate the creative process of screenwriting, it is woefully simplistic in its view of the writing process itself - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2020
3.5/4 72% Coming to America (1988) Murphy shows genuine range in Coming to America and a willingness to sacrifice some raunch for some sweetness - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2020
3.5/4 87% THE GODFATHER, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone (1990) although not in the league with its predecessors, it is still an invigorating, deeply felt piece of work - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2020
1.5/4 No Score Yet Beverly Hills Cop 4 (2018) easily the worst entry in the series-an almost shockingly dull police procedural set in a fictional amusement park that lacks the first film's brash fish-out-water comedy and the second's visual bombast - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 9, 2020
3/4 91% The Mystery Of DB Cooper (2020) highly entertaining in the way it interweaves all of the possibilities, tantalizing us with the all-too-convincing clues that pinpoint the various suspects as Cooper - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 9, 2020
2/4 22% The Golden Child (1986) an Eddie Murphy vehicle through and through, with little holding it together outside of the familiar cadences of his streetwise confidence and infectious laugh - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 9, 2020
2/4 43% The Lie (2020) starts from an intriguing premise that is well sustained for most of the film before it inexplicably devolves into a preposterous and baffling conclusion that undercuts everything that was good in it - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 9, 2020
2.5/4 20% Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979) odd, unstable mishmash of science fiction and adventure tropes that never really cohere - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 9, 2020
3/4 92% Leap of Faith (2019) the depths Friedkin plumbs in discussing not just why he made the artistic choices he made, but how his own personal views, philosophies, beliefs, and outlook shaped those choices, suggests why The Exorcist works with such power, even to this day. - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 9, 2020
2.5/4 90% The Dark and the Wicked (2020) the film's supernatural dread might have escalated even more had it been tied to the characters' own psyches - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2020
3.5/4 89% The Trial of the Chicago 7 (2020) deeply entertaining though it may be, it is ultimately sobering in how it dramatizes not how far we might fall, but how far we have already fallen - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2020
3/4 78% The True Adventures of Wolfboy (2020) a thoughtful, meaningful paean to outcasts, oddballs, and dreamers, hirsute and otherwise - Q Network Film Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2020