John BeifussMovie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

John Beifuss

John Beifuss
John Beifuss'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
3/4 77% Elvis & Nixon (2016) Benefits from its economy as well as its comedy. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 22, 2016
2.5/4 73% Miles Ahead (2016) The movie's mix of historical touchstones and antic fantasy suggests the influence of the Coens, whose films -- 'Llewyn Davis,' 'Hail, Caesar!' -- similarly suggest that fiction and nonfiction are as permeable and connectable as the skins of soap bubbles. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 22, 2016
2/4 No Score Yet Union Bound (2016) Apparently motivated by a desire to promote a message of racial cooperation, the film is quite handsome, given its meager resources, but it has the misplaced priorities of a civil rights parable that is more interested in Miss Daisy than in her driver. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 22, 2016
2.5/4 49% Hardcore Henry (2016) The idea is more interesting than the execution. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 22, 2016
3/4 90% Barbershop: The Next Cut (2016) Directed with unfussy efficiency by Malcolm D. Lee, cousin of Spike Lee, the movie arrives as very much a companion piece to Spike's 'Chi-Raq,' also crafted as a response to the alarming murder rate among young people in Chicago's inner city. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 22, 2016
3.5/4 97% Embrace Of The Serpent (El Abrazo De La Serpiente) (2016) An essential difference between this and previous similar movies is that the central point of view is not that of a European or North American interloper but that of an occupant of the forest -- in this case, a feather-bedecked Amazonian shaman. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 11, 2016
3.5/4 98% Zootopia (2016) Believe it: Disney's latest digitally animated feature is a contra-Trumpian, race-conscious, political-conspiracy neo-noir in the guise of a funny talking-animal cartoon. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 11, 2016
2.5/4 12% The Divergent Series: Allegiant (2016) Contains some wonderful science-fiction production design, but its increasingly rococo plotting and growing character roster dilute the power of author Veronica Roth's original premise. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 11, 2016
2.5/4 83% Midnight Special (2016) A problem for me is that the movie (marred by a nudging reverential score) never presents Alton as anything but a benign, even angelic force. The implications of Alton's power is terrifying, but the movie from the start treats the boy as a gift. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 8, 2016
1.5/4 52% Demolition (2016) If the blood sacrifice of a woman is necessary to help a privileged, wealthy and attractive young man realize his true and better self, well, hey, that's life. Or a least that's 'Demolition.' ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 8, 2016
3/4 46% Knight of Cups (2016) Few filmmakers have created such personal, expressive art, and few other films invite the viewer to be as active a participant in the quest for meaning. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 1, 2016
2/4 20% I Saw the Light (2016) Hiddleston's work ethic is admirable, but the effect is akin to allowing an actor in a Picasso biopic paint his own copy of 'Guernica.' It just ain't the same. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 1, 2016
2.5/4 25% London Has Fallen (2016) Less jingoistic but no less morally specious than its predecessor. (The film dismisses the vengeance-inciting incident of its opening sequence -- the U.S. drone-killing of innocent Pakistanis -- as excusable collateral damage in the War on Terror.) ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 1, 2016
3.5/4 90% 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016) This ingenious and claustrophobic thriller is compact enough to be almost the movie equivalent of a black box theater production: For most of its length, it needs only three characters and a single location to keep audiences on edge. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 1, 2016
2.5/4 83% Hello, My Name is Doris (2016) The film is much like its title character: Its colorful cutesy-pie surface camouflages a dark interior. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Apr 1, 2016
3/4 27% Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) Conjures a post-9/11 pre-apocalypse in which dreams, visions, memories, pop culture and history overlap. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Mar 25, 2016
3.5/4 100% Only Yesterday (2016) A movie of exquisite, deceptive simplicity and painterly beauty, with a story that is entirely ordinary yet heartbreaking in its universality. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Mar 21, 2016
2.5/4 33% The Bronze (2016) The keen character work that is the movie's most impressive feature too often is overwhelmed by the twin bugaboos of R-rated vulgarity and unearned sentiment. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Mar 21, 2016
3/4 84% Deadpool (2016) The timing is impeccable: It hardly seems a coincidence that Deadpool's startling popularity has occurred in parallel to the establishment-gigging rise of another rude, self-confident outlier, Donald Trump. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Mar 14, 2016
2/4 16% Gods Of Egypt (2016) An overall aura of unpretentious mytho(il)logical goofiness doesn't quite compensate for the digital tedium that is the defining aesthetic of this odd sword-and-sorcery would-be blockbuster. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Mar 14, 2016
3.5/4 96% Boy and the World (O Menino e o Mundo) (2015) A dazzler, with enough far-out 'head trip' moments to have qualified it for cult status during the era of the midnight-movie illegal smile. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Mar 14, 2016
2/4 31% Daddy's Home (2015) It's symptomatic of the production's limpness that the movie was shot, for tax-credit reasons, in New Orleans, yet the locations have been scrubbed to a funk-free suburban anonymity. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Mar 14, 2016
4/4 91% The Witch (2016) This story about a 17th-century Puritan family struggling to survive at the edge of the wilderness becomes a dark American origin story: a beautiful promise, corrupted by fear and hypocrisy. The fruit is rotten; the milk bloody. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 29, 2016
3.5/4 96% Son of Saul (2015) Saul's progress is a tour of a factory of death. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 29, 2016
3/4 61% Race (2016) An engaging, even exemplary biopic. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 29, 2016
3.5/4 85% Hail, Caesar! (2016) Constructed from spoofy vignettes that recreate vanished genres, indelible star turns and 'dialectical' dialogues, the movie is simultaneously amused, awed and appalled by the power of what might be America's most influential industry. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 29, 2016
4/4 96% Jafar Panahi's Taxi (2015) At one point, a lawyer lays a rose near the dashboard camera, with the comment: 'This is for the people of cinema.' For audiences, 'Jafar Panahi's Taxi' is just such a rose. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 12, 2016
3/4 78% Where to Invade Next (2016) It doesn't pretend to offer 'balance' reporting. Instead, it's a provocation, a conversation starter, and -- in this most distressing of presidential election years -- a plea for compassion. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 12, 2016
3/4 91% The Lady In The Van (2015) If the Victorian lace is gone, the lacerating wit and intimidating demeanor that are Smith signatures remain. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 12, 2016
3/4 43% Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (2016) It's more droll than drool (though blood and other seepages do occasionally drain from the cavities that pockmark undead faces). ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 8, 2016
2.5/4 79% Ip Man 3 (2016) Tyson is onscreen for only a few minutes, but that's long enough for a fists-vs.-feet battle with the title character that recalls, in its celebrity sports gimmickry, Bruce Lee's bout with basketball star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 'Game of Death.' ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 8, 2016
2.5/4 27% The Boy (2016) Creepy (if hardly credible), and admirably compact. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 1, 2016
2.5/4 65% Krampus (2015) The chaotic visual design -- flashing lights, swirling snow -- too often makes the film tough on the eyeballs. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 1, 2016
2/4 10% The Forest (2016) Tepid and unimaginative... ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 1, 2016
3/4 97% 45 Years (2015) From her behavior -- from Rampling's acting, in other words -- we become aware that Kate has begun to question the very meaning of her marriage (which is to say, her life). Was it an illusion? A compromise? A deception? A settling? A mistake? ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Feb 1, 2016
4/4 96% Girlhood (2015) Compassionate, profound and pertinent... ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 25, 2016
4/4 99% Timbuktu (2015) 'Timbuktu' startles by acknowledging the humanity of jihadists, even as it tacitly condemns their dogmas and especially their violence. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 25, 2016
3.5/4 93% Anomalisa (2015) Plumbs the uncanny valley to thrilling effect... ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 25, 2016
2.5/4 74% The Hateful Eight (2015) The incessant use of the N-word seems less a narrative or thematic necessity than a function of ego -- of Tarantino's insistence on his artist's exemption and his privileged status as a white man who is 'down.' ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 19, 2016
3.5/4 81% The Revenant (2015) Like 'The Hateful Eight,' 'The Revenant' identifies racism as the white man's mortal sin, but here this poison subverts not just the legitimacy of the United States but the entire enterprise of European expansion into the New World. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 19, 2016
2.5/4 50% 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers Of Benghazi (2016) A peculiar cocktail of bloodlust, patriotism and grief. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 19, 2016
4/4 94% Carol (2015) A movie of impeccable surfaces and subterranean anxieties... ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 19, 2016
3.5/4 60% Joy (2015) Another crazy, messy episode of David O. Russell's This American Life. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 4, 2016
3.5/4 92% Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015) A canny crowd-pleaser of reversals, replays and reveals. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 4, 2016
2/4 74% Youth (2015) Resplendent and fraudulent. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 4, 2016
2.6/4 69% The Danish Girl (2015) At times, it's hard not to remember poor Z-budget auteur Ed Wood, pleading to caress his girlfriend's angora sweater in 'Glen or Glenda,' an equally earnest yet bolder and in fact artier plea for liberation... ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 4, 2016
2/4 60% Concussion (2015) Saint Will Smith (see also: 'The Pursuit of Happyness ,' 'Seven Pounds') returns to suffer stoically, forgive those who know not what they do and otherwise ennoble the world with his sensitivity and acuity. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Jan 4, 2016
2.5/4 88% The Big Short (2015) A testament to the perils of facile digital editing. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Dec 22, 2015
3/4 97% Heart of a Dog (2015) Anderson's salutation to Lolabelle may crush the animal lovers in the audience: 'Hello little bonehead, I'll love you forever.' ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Dec 16, 2015
2/4 80% Macbeth (2015) When a film version of 'Macbeth' jettisons the witches' 'Something wicked this way comes' cauldron speech for long stretches of showy slow-motion action-violence, its priorities are awry. ‐ Commercial Appeal (Memphis, TN)
Posted Dec 16, 2015