Jim Schembri Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

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

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
3/5 17% The Space Between Us (2017) It's a tough task blending teen romance with sci-fi, but director Peter Chelsom concocts a pretty good hybrid in a film that delivers some enjoyable high-concept story ideas while turning the trusty fish-out-of-water convention up to 11. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 18, 2017
3.5/5 89% Loving (2016) A big part of the appeal of Loving is its modesty and lack of histrionics, which sets it apart from the other Oscar-nominated films...It's that lack of self-importance that underscores the quiet power of this remarkable, moving film. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 18, 2017
2/5 80% David Stratton: A Cinematic Life (2017) His life might have been cinematic but this choppy film certainly isn't...this largely uncritical valentine to the veteran film lover and movie critic feels like a primed-for-TV documentary. And, as it turns out, it is. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 11, 2017
2.5/5 17% A Few Less Men (2016) Anyone with an aversion to jokes about farts or penises should steer clear of this consistently silly, defiantly enjoyable low-brow Aussie comedy. All else will enjoy the film's breezy lack of pretense, love of cheap gags and bursts of slapstick.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 11, 2017
3/5 59% Alone in Berlin (2017) Gleeson shines here as a man of few words who channels his anger into action. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 11, 2017
3.5/5 76% Kong: Skull Island (2017) There's some mandatory enviro-messaging amidst all the mayhem - respect the wild, man does not have dominion over the earth, etc - but this really is a giant serving of joyful, disposable blockbuster mulch, full of lovely, mega-sized beasts.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 11, 2017
1/5 94% Arrival (2016) A yawn-inducing snoozefest that borrows from every science fiction film from The Day the Earth Stood Still to Contact...Those hungry for a good old-school, alien-based sci-fi adventure will decry the films lack of ray guns. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 4, 2017
3/5 74% Nocturnal Animals (2016) A good way to describe this film is like the cinematic version of a Kinder surprise, with a ripping B-grade badlands thriller wrapped inside an A-grade art movie. It certainly is edge-of-the-seat stuff.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 4, 2017
1.5/5 72% Jasper Jones (2016) The film's story is pitted with plotholes of implausibility that continually take you out of the picture, robbing the film almost entirely of tension... the film's myriad flaws can be characterised as basic violations of common sense and consistency.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2017
3/5 75% Miss Sloane (2016) The plot-heavy, dialogue-driven film strongly evokes what it is like living in a morally elastic atmosphere where the rules of conduct are driven more by convenience than conscience.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2017
4/5 93% Logan (2017) The film pulls out all the stops to deliver an emotionally and viscerally satisfying experience. It works so well it easily qualifies as the best movie of the entire X-Men franchise as well as one of the best in the increasingly tired superhero genre.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2017
1.5/5 27% Fist Fight (2017) The film features a lot of that specifically American semi-improvised style of comedic acting where the actors act as though they've either forgotten what they're about to say, or have suddenly remembered it.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2017
3/5 100% The Family (2016) Absorbing investigative documentary about the Melbourne-based cult that brainwashed children in preparation for the Apocalypse...This is a story crying out to be turned into feature.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2017
4/5 78% T2 Trainspotting (2017) The Trainspotting team have managed to come up with one of the best examples of how good sequels work.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2017
2/5 85% Silence (2017) As one of the unarguable geniuses of American cinema, Martin Scorsese essentially makes two types of films: those soul-searching works that explore the spiritual side of the human condition; and those films you can watch without losing consciousness. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 17, 2017
2.5/5 35% The Great Wall (2017) A fantasy monster movie starring Matt Damon and a few hundred thousand digitally rendered dragons.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 17, 2017
3.5/5 92% Hidden Figures (2017) Directed with Oscar-baiting flourish by Theodore Melfi, Hidden Figures works well as a well-meaning, corrective history lesson designed to honour the talented women who worked away in historical silence while castigating the system that oppressed them.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 17, 2017
3/5 77% A Street Cat Named Bob (2016) Veteran British director Roger Spottiswoode (Turner & Hooch; Mesmer) doesn't push the cute factor beyond endurance and punches through some points about some of the harsher realities of poverty in modern Britain.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 11, 2017
2.5/5 93% Fences (2016) The inordinate length of the piece and the constantly descending tone of the drama results in an ultimately heavy, draining experience from a director who should have been braver in breaking out of the constraints of its stage origins.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2017
3/5 10% Fifty Shades Darker (2017) A well-made sex melodrama designed for the mommy-porn loving masses. It's like a soap opera with bondage, or Mills & Boon with whips and handcuffs...it offers soft-centred transgression for supermarket shoppers, polite perversion for the multiplex.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2017
2.5/5 No Score Yet Who Gets the Dog? (2016) A surprisingly amusing, bright, feather-light romantic comedy.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2017
2/5 0% Amateur Night (2016) Jason Biggs plays a failing architect who becomes an Uber driver for a trio of Los Angeles hookers, one of whom is played by Ashley Tisdale in a salty performance intended to distance her from the sweet turns she did in the High School Musical films.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2017
3/5 70% Operation Avalanche (2016) Very amusing, well-made comedy mockumentary, set in the late-1960s, that explains how and why the Apollo 11 Moon landing was faked. Director Matt Johnson squeezes a lot out of a scant-budget.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2017
3.5/5 43% Gold (2017) As a big business movie in the wake of The Big Short, Gold gives us another dipsy adventure into the adrenalin-pumped world of high-risk speculation and financial high-wire walks...[with] an impressive acting showpiece from McConaughey.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2017
4.5/5 81% Patriots Day (2017) As well as demonstrating the impact the docu-drama format can have by placing you right in the middle of events, Patriots Day also shows how the battle against terrorism requires ordinary people standing up.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2017
3.5/5 84% Imperium (2016) [Daniel Radcliffe] shows just how effectively he can harden up for a tough role... the film is pretty brutal about FBI procedure and is super-topical given the ever-present threat of home-grown terrorism. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 27, 2017
1.5/5 34% Live By Night (2017) What a totally unpleasant surprise Ben Affleck's gun-happy, empty-headed gangster film turns out to be...We have a sloppy narrative so full of holes you'd think somebody had taken to it with a Thompson sub-machine gun.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 27, 2017
2/5 98% Moonlight (2016) What begins as an arresting blend of lyrical storytelling and bad-neighbourhood harshness gradually ferments into a relentlessly melancholic dirge in dire need of somewhere to go...an early contender for the most overrated film of the year.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 27, 2017
2/5 96% Manchester by the Sea (2016) There is an in-built drabness to the drama of Manchester by the Sea that, while never exactly boring, takes far too long to get to its sobering yet unremarkable payoff. We all enjoy a good downer, but not one that also manages to tire us out. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 27, 2017
3.5/5 75% Split (2017) An armrest-clutching psychological thriller that is bound to render you breathless by the time the credits roll...with the spirit of Alfred Hitchcock watching over him, M Night Shyamalan seems to have recovered his bearings. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 27, 2017
2.5/5 34% Masterminds (2016) As a throwaway Friday night pizza time killer, this redneck comedy is a funny enough caper lark. Apparently based on a true story.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2017
3/5 25% The Benefactor (2016) Well-etched character piece about a high-spirited philanthropist (Richard Gere) with no family...writer/director Andrew Renzi keeps things straightforward and gets terrific performances out of Gere and especially Theo James.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2017
3.5/5 58% Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life (2016) Downright funny kid-movie satire about the horrors of moving to a new school and dealing with a dictatorial principal who hates creativity and loves oppressing students.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2017
2.5/5 89% Jackie (2016) A fine film boasting some notably detailed period recreation...As a historical drama about how a nation looked to a single person for its cue about how to react to the murder of its leader the film does make for a solid, if somewhat repetitive, journey.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2017
3/5 13% Collateral Beauty (2016) Collateral Beauty really is a nice, innocuous little film designed for those in the mood for an undemanding weepie...Yet, once again we have an example of an unpresuming, mid-range movie becoming a lightning rod for inexplicable online hatred. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2017
3.5/5 43% xXx: Return of Xander Cage (2017) With all the requisite explosions, chases and gunfights you'd want, Vin Diesel returns to revive yet another action franchise in a highly entertaining, deliriously preposterous crash-bam adventure.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2017
4/5 85% Lion (2016) Unhurried in pace, subtle in tone and simple in structure, this moving, compassionate film engages with the age-old theme of finding one's place in the world, yet through uniquely 21st Century means.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2017
1/5 18% Assassin's Creed (2016) More aptly known as Assassin's Crud, this all-but-incomprehensible mess attempts to bring the mega-popular computer game to franchise-ready life...a wall-to-wall dud. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 6, 2017
1/5 31% Passengers (2016) The film does serve as a timely metaphor for much of Hollywood product these days: beautiful, exacting visual work helping dress up a threadbare story. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 6, 2017
4/5 95% The Edge of Seventeen (2016) Edge of Seventeen hits the pubescent nail soundly on the head with a sureness of touch that easily makes it one of the best and most honest films thus far about the turmoil, delights and utter confusion of the teenage years.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Jan 6, 2017
3/5 74% The Secret Life of Pets (2016) It's a typically fast adventure graced by a diverse range of critter characters as a slavishly loyal Jack Russell pooch (voiced by Louis CK) goes to war with his large new roomie (Eric Stonestreet) and they both end up on the street.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
2.5/5 79% Girl Asleep (2016) Lovely, quirky, highly stylised left-field Aussie comedy set in the 1970s about adolescent awkwardness, peer pressure and the importance of throwing a killer party.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
3/5 83% Captain Fantastic (2016) An emotionally strong, heartfelt film written and very well-directed by Matt Ross, who fills the running time with plenty of colour and conflict.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
3/5 100% A Beautiful Planet (2016) Another eye-popping Imax doco set largely in orbit and looking down at our humble planet.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
4.5/5 85% Sully (2016) Any lingering doubts that Clint Eastwood was at the top of his game as one of America's premier film directors are swept away by his taut, compelling retelling of the forced landing on New York's Hudson River in which 155 lives were saved.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
1/5 81% Sunset Song (2016) Hardcore fans of veteran director Terence Davies (Distant Voices, Still Lives) will likely lap up every sumptuously lit frame of his slow-moving, lovingly composed adaptation of the Lewis Grassic Gibbon novel...Everyone else, bring a pillow.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
2/5 65% Nerve (2016) The further the film goes, the stupider it gets.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
2.5/5 88% Blood Father (2016) Unexceptional, occasionally exciting chase film with Mel Gibson playing a grizzled recovering alcoholic whose destitute life is given purpose when his missing daughter calls him for help. ‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
3.5/5 87% Don't Breathe (2016) Terrific, taut, dry-throated thriller...‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016
2.5/5 97% Kubo and the Two Strings (2016) Man, is it gloomy.‐ 3AW
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2016