Jim Schembri

Jim Schembri
Jim Schembri's reviews (from any publication) always count toward the Tomatometer because this critic is a Tomatometer-approved critic.

Movie Reviews Only

Showing 51 - 100 of 1172
Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
5/5 74%

Trumbo (2015)

"Absolutely sterling, compelling drama about the notorious Hollywood blacklist of the 1940s and '50s...Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) puts in a career-high turn as screenwriter Dalton Trumbo. " ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
4.5/5 97%

45 Years (2015)

"An outstanding, modest, moving adult drama." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
2.5/5 61%

Concussion (2015)

"Will Smith's performance is solid, but Concussion's plodding, procedural nature turns the drama into a bit of a do-gooder dirge." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
1.5/5 49%

How To Be Single (2016)

" Hey, here's an original idea for a comedy: single girls in New York trying to land men. " ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
2.5/5 15%

Ride Along 2 (2016)

"Those who loved the comedy stylings of grim-faced Ice Cube and motor-mouthed Kevin Hart from their first hit buddy-cop venture will find nothing to complain about here." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
3/5 52%

Risen (2016)

"From director Kevin Reynolds and Sony's Affirm division, which specialises in films designed to appeal to the Christian faithful, comes a pretty good, handsomely produced, non-patronising Christ-based drama set in the days after the crucifixion." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
3/5 23%

Zoolander 2 (2016)

"After 15 years in deep freeze, writer/director/star Ben Stiller thaws out his beloved, pea-brained male model Derek Zoolander for a belated sequel and, in the face of the cosmic odds against it, it's quite a fun lame-brained laughfest." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
3/5 97%

Brooklyn (2015)

"The film is certainly lovely and well-acted, but the nerve it has obviously hit is not immediately obvious. Perhaps it's the film's very modesty - its lack of pretense, grandeur and histrionics - that accounts for its appeal." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
2.5/5 84%

Deadpool (2016)

"In what appears to be an unofficial global apology for his dead-in-the-water performance in the 2011 debacle The Green Lantern, Ryan Reynolds pushes hard on his funny buttons in this try-hard superhero pseudo-send up." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
4/5 92%

Anomalisa (2015)

"Serious lovers of animation won't forgive themselves if they miss this remarkable, absorbing film." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
3/5 12%

The Choice (2016)

"The bottom line is that The Choice works. It knows what it is doing and who it is aiming for. Those who aren't interested in being swept up by romance and having their buttons pushed will know better than to buy a ticket." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
3.5/5 86%

Steve Jobs (2015)

"Though it is a decidedly dark portrait that shimmers into shape before us, Michael Fassbender infuses a comic bounce to his performance that neatly counters his regular outbursts of despotism and bad fatherhood." ‐3AW
Posted Feb 25, 2016
3/5 11%

Dirty Grandpa (2016)

"Crass, often gross and easy to dismiss as rubbish - the film has been critically reviled - Dirty Grandpa nonetheless reveals how De Niro's latter-life love of comedy seems devoted to piecing together a multi-movie portrait of what it is like to be old." ‐3AW
Posted Jan 28, 2016
3/5 96%

Spotlight (2015)

"The energetic ensemble cast...lend a moral urgency to the story, though writer/director Tom McCarthy is savvy enough to temper the heroism with the revelation that they were approached years earlier with the same information and did nothing." ‐3AW
Posted Jan 28, 2016
3.5/5 76%

Goosebumps (2015)

" Fabulously entertaining and funny action fantasy with monsters running amok as they escape from the locked Goosebumps manuscripts of author R.L Stine (Jack Black)...Huge fun. " ‐3AW
Posted Jan 28, 2016
2/5 43%

Looking for Grace (2015)

"Told in a fractured, non-linear style, with overlapping narratives retelling the story from different perspectives, the parts can be tantilising but the whole doesn't come together the way it should, the payoff being more of a whimper than a bang." ‐3AW
Posted Jan 28, 2016
3/5 69%

The Danish Girl (2015)

"Fresh-faced British actor Eddie Redmayne here provides another sterling example of just how deeply he can immerse himself into a role." ‐3AW
Posted Jan 28, 2016
2.5/5 75%

The Hateful Eight (2015)

"For all his good intentions and adoration of old-school filmmakers, Tarantino has overreached here - a hard thing for a guy with so much talent to do. That said, one thing Tarantino can never be faulted on is the commitment he gets from his players. " ‐3AW
Posted Jan 22, 2016
3.5/5 88%

The Big Short (2015)

"It's a dizzying semi-comic, totally serious ride through the canyons of finance, and while you might not comprehend every single turn of phrase...[Director Adam] McKay is careful to keep the emphasis on the character drama." ‐3AW
Posted Jan 22, 2016
2.5/5 16%

The 5th Wave (2016)

"What begins with the giddy prospect of a fun apocalyptic alien invasion movie steadily morphs into yet another futuristic heavy-browed teens-vs-grown-ups movie. As its young, reluctant action star Chloe Grace Moretz (Carrie; Kick Ass) gives it her all. " ‐3AW
Posted Jan 22, 2016
3/5 94%

Carol (2015)

"Director Todd Haynes steers away from the melodrama that drove Far From Heaven (2002), the emphasis here being on restraint, mood and beautifully nuanced performances, all framed by the type of exacting period recreation that has now become standard." ‐3AW
Posted Jan 22, 2016
4.5/5 82%

The Revenant (2015)

"The first few minutes will leave you in absolutely no doubt as to the type of visceral, vivid, immersive, armrest-clutching movie experience you're in for...Think of the opening battle sequence in Saving Private Ryan, but with muskets and arrows." ‐3AW
Posted Jan 10, 2016
3/5 60%

Sisters (2015)

"In what can be taken as an extended and belated apology for their woeful 2008 comedy Baby Mama, funny femmes Tina Fey (30 Rock) and Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation) team up as sisters for another girls-behaving-badly slapstick comedy. " ‐3AW
Posted Jan 10, 2016
3/5 87%

The Peanuts Movie (2015)

"Anyone who possesses even a passing familiarity with Charlie Brown and the gang from Peanuts should find some appreciable measure of delight with this super-faithful feature film adaptation...a perfectly fine, perfectly safe big-screen translation. " ‐3AW
Posted Jan 10, 2016
1.5/5 9%

Point Break (2015)

"There's no disputing the visual quality of the film's stunt sequences: people dive out of planes, through buildings, off cliffs...Unfortunately, there's no trace of the homo-erotic bromance that fuelled the original. " ‐3AW
Posted Jan 10, 2016
4/5 60%

Joy (2015)

"A winning, warts-and-all account of how Joy Mangano fought sexism, exploitation and innumerable set backs to get her mop on the Home Shopping Network...Consumed by a defiantly triumphant drive, Jennifer Lawrence out-does herself as a domestic heroine." ‐3AW
Posted Dec 25, 2015
2.5/5 73%

Suffragette (2015)

"The ham-fisted performances and drifts into cliche keep this from being the powerhouse historical drama it should have been. One wonders what a brilliant social-realist director such as Ken Loach could have done with this. " ‐3AW
Posted Dec 25, 2015
3/5 31%

Daddy's Home (2015)

"This is the type of comedy Steve Martin would have made in his heydey. Strongly recommended. " ‐3AW
Posted Dec 25, 2015
2.5/5 77%

The Good Dinosaur (2015)

"As bright and fast-moving as it is, The Good Dinosaur is very much a colour-by-numbers effort. Pixar has covered this sort of territory so many times now that recurring themes [about being yourself] have become rote to all but the youngest Pixar fans." ‐3AW
Posted Dec 25, 2015
3/5 16%

Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Road Chip (2015)

"Delivers precisely what is expected to its fans...The super-high quality of the animation, which places Alvin, Theodore and Simon in the real world, remains a real highlight in these innocuous adventures - it really is an unrecognised art. " ‐3AW
Posted Dec 25, 2015
3.5/5 92%

Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015)

"Dramatically, the film does pull some great aces from up its sleeve...The film also proves what a lot of Star Wars fans have long suspected - that the best thing that could happen to Star Wars would be to take George Lucas out of it." ‐3AW
Posted Dec 16, 2015
4/5 92%

99 Homes (2015)

"A brutally honest, compelling drama about America's housing crisis." ‐3AW
Posted Dec 10, 2015
3/5 89%

Mississippi Grind (2015)

"All good films about gambling are, in essence, anti-gambling films and this one is a cracker. " ‐3AW
Posted Dec 10, 2015
3/5 91%

The End Of The Tour (2015)

"Jesse Eisenberg especially impressive as the motor-mouthed inquisitor opposite Jason Segel's endearing turn as a relaxed slacker genius. An enjoyable arthouse offering." ‐3AW
Posted Dec 5, 2015
4/5 62%

Truth (2015)

"Briskly paced, the film unfolds as a captivating fiasco about presumption, bias, hidden agendas and the elasticity of journalistic ethics." ‐3AW
Posted Dec 5, 2015
2.5/5 66%

The Night Before (2015)

" Loaded with party drugs and with Rogen putting in yet another of his rote man-child performances - really, Seth, enough already - it's a pleasant enough time-killer though all the improvised scenes with over-lapping dialogue are a little hard to make out" ‐3AW
Posted Dec 5, 2015
3.5/5 43%

In the Heart of the Sea (2015)

"If it's a rollicking sea adventure you're after, it's hard to beat Ron Howard's wave-riding jaunt across the ocean...Howard keeps at bay any retro-fitted enviro-friendly agenda by making the whale the type of villain who doesn't know when to stop. " ‐3AW
Posted Dec 5, 2015
3/5 94%

Creed (2015)

"Heartfelt, respectful franchise extender...The film chiefly uses the events of Rocky III as foreshadowing for this well-thought over story...It's very difficult to imagine anyone with even a passing interest in the Rocky films not enjoying Creed. " ‐3AW
Posted Nov 26, 2015
3/5 45%

The Program (1993)

"Very good, revealing film about the extraordinary pressure of modern competitive sport and the man who has become something of a negative role model, even though his backstory as a cancer survivor does allow room for sympathy." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 26, 2015
4/5 96%

The Look of Silence (2015)

"This sequel [to The Art of Killing] features much more soul-pricking confrontation and demands from the aging perpetrators that questions stop being asked." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 26, 2015
3/5 54%

Hotel Transylvania 2 (2015)

"A delightful, perfectly formed sequel to the animated ghouls-are-good original...The animation is gloriously kinetic. What more needs to be said? If you liked the first one..." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 26, 2015
1/5 34%

By The Sea (2015)

"[The] direction is so leaden and the pace so slow the film largely unwinds as dramatically inert and uninteresting...one wonders how much better this film would have been had somebody had the nerve to tell [Angelina Jolie Pitt] to lose 20 minutes." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 26, 2015
4/5 100%

Kaakkaa Muttai (2014)

"This absolutely delightful, insightful comedy from India is easily one of the best world movies of 2015." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 23, 2015
3.5/5 73%

He Named Me Malala (2015)

"A rousing profile of the teenage Pakistani girl the Taliban tried to kill for her belief in education and equality...one of the unintended pleasures is registering how Malala has become the worst possible nightmare to her failed murderers." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 23, 2015
3/5 81%

Tanna (2016)

"Despite the novel setting it's remarkable how familiar the film's romantic drama feels. It's like Jane Austen in the Jungle as the characters defy tradition, cause social upheaval and follow their hearts in the quest for happiness." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 23, 2015
3.5/5 39%

Secret in Their Eyes (2015)

"Gripping, twist-laden, no-nonsense murder yarn." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 23, 2015
1/5 15%

Absolutely Anything (2015)

"Ubiquitous British funnyman Simon Pegg in a crazy sci-fi lark directed by Terry Jones of Monty Python fame? Sounds like a match made in Heaven, yeah? Unfortunately, once this tale gets going it feels more like a match made in purgatory." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 23, 2015
1.5/5 65%

Spectre (2015)

"An exceedingly mediocre exercise in corporate filmmaking that often feels tired and lazy, just like Craig's performance...Spectre promptly plops into the quicksand of Bond cliches, undoing much of the good work of 2012's Skyfall. What a shame. " ‐3AW
Posted Nov 11, 2015
3/5 45%

Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse (2015)

"Wall-to-wall fun...this good-natured splatterfest [is] a good, gory time with lots of laughs and digitally assisted dismemberment." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 6, 2015
4/5 86%

Only The Dead (2015)

"Absolutely outstanding, piercing documentary about the war in Iraq pieced together by Australian war correspondent Michael Ware from the seven years' worth of camcorder footage he took... Easily one of the best accounts of the war so far." ‐3AW
Posted Nov 6, 2015
Showing 51 - 100 of 1172