John Powers

John Powers

Agrees with the Tomatometer 84% of the time.

John Powers's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): L.A. Weekly,

Movie Reviews Only

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Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review

The Handmaiden (Ah-ga-ssi) (2016)

"This breathless feminist thriller has the refined style of an art film but offers the disreputable fun of a guilty pleasure." ‐ Vogue
Posted Oct 21, 2016

The Witness (2016)

"The Witness also serves as a useful moral corrective." ‐ NPR's Fresh Air
Posted Jun 17, 2016

Neon Bull (Boi Neon) (2016)

"Mascaro plops us into a back-country reality most of us have never seen and reveals it to be stranger and dreamier than we might think." ‐ NPR
Posted Apr 6, 2016

American Sniper (2015)

"It speaks emotionally to audiences who sense that we lost something in Iraq, yet still want to honor the heroism of those who risked their lives for the cause, whether or not it was ultimately a great one." ‐ NPR
Posted May 29, 2015

Insomnia (2002)

"In the world of Christopher Nolan, memory is still as treacherous as nitroglycerin." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Aug 25, 2014

The Trip To Italy (2014)

"What I find appealing about these films is their sloping, improvisational air, their quality of catching a moment of life on the wing, as when Brydon startles Coogan with a joke so good he can't stop himself from laughing." ‐ NPR
Posted Aug 14, 2014

The Easy Life (Il sorpasso) (1962)

"When I first saw it 25 years ago, I couldn't wait to see it again right away. I've been waiting ever since." ‐ NPR
Posted May 8, 2014

8 Mile (2002)

"What saves all this from being purely conventional is the filmmaker's keen sense of Rabbit's essential solitude as an artist, even when surrounded by friends." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 7, 2014

The Last of the Unjust (2014)

"The Last of the Unjust has a vivid immediacy." ‐ NPR
Posted Feb 19, 2014

The Square (2013)

"If, like me, you watched all this on TV, the ongoing turmoil began to feel like a distant, abstract blur. Noujaim takes us inside this history by centering on three protesters, each from a different background." ‐ NPR
Posted Jan 13, 2014

Portrait of Jason (1967)

"Whether Jason is laughing or crying, he holds you rapt with tales that conceal as much as they reveal." ‐ NPR
Posted May 2, 2013

O Som ao Redor (Neighbouring Sounds) (2012)

"Charged with an air of impending danger, the movie just keeps building." ‐ NPR
Posted Aug 24, 2012

Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (2012)

"Offers a good introduction to the career of this fascinating man who is no shrinking violet." ‐ NPR
Posted Jul 26, 2012

Putin's Kiss (2012)

"What makes Putin's Kiss interesting goes beyond Masha's personal rise and fall. For starters, it offers a fresh glimpse into how Putin's Russia actually works." ‐ NPR
Posted Feb 22, 2012

Miss Bala (2012)

"While it may not tell the whole story of Mexican life, it clearly captures a truth nobody can deny." ‐ NPR
Posted Jan 19, 2012

The Manchurian Candidate (2004)

"If Demme's version lacks the wallop of its predecessor, it is more likely to be popular with contemporary audiences, who will enjoy not only its labyrinthine twists but its stars' burnished professionalism." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Jul 28, 2004

Oasis (2003)

"This is a film that gives humanism back its good name." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Jun 17, 2004

Coffee and Cigarettes (2004)

"It's worth fidgeting through the mediocre stuff to get to three good pieces." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 12, 2004

The Saddest Music in the World (2004)

"Surely the oddest 1930s musical ever made, in or out of the 1930s." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 6, 2004

Young Adam (2004)

"For all the symbolic weight of its title, Young Adam doesn't come close to giving us Existence. But it does give us one limited human being." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 15, 2004

Kill Bill: Volume 2 (2004)

"Vol. 2 is the most sheerly enjoyable movie I've seen in ages, allowing for all the intimacy that was missing from its predecessor." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 15, 2004

Millennium Mambo (Qianxi Manbo) (2001)

"A ravishing bauble about la dolce vita in Taiwan." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Mar 25, 2004

The Ladykillers (2004)

"Bludgeons you with cartoonish gags about stupid football players, irritable-bowel syndrome and (for the second Coen film in a row) somebody accidentally shooting himself in the head." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Mar 25, 2004

James' Journey to Jerusalem (2004)

"An enjoyable, sneaky-smart fable about the collision between innocence and experience." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Mar 25, 2004

Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (2004)

"As a friend joked, 'If you peel away the movie's postmodern tricks, what you're left with is about as profound as a Hugh Grant movie.'" ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Mar 18, 2004

Kill Bill: Volume 1 (2003)

"A fan-boy's paradise." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Oct 9, 2003

Dracula: Pages From a Virgin's Diary (2003)

"The most inventive vampire picture of the last 80 years." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Jun 26, 2003

28 Days Later (2003)

"While 28 Days Later is itself a stylistic tour de force, Boyle recaptures his earlier storytelling briskness and deft touch with actors." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Jun 26, 2003

The Good Old Naughty Days (2003)

"Provide a revealing glimpse into an earlier, if not more innocent, erotic universe." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Jun 3, 2003

Together (He ni zai yi qi) (2003)

"If you can get past the corn, the story exerts a not-unsatisfying emotional pull thanks to Yun's soulful gravity and a tenderness that Chen hasn't shown quite so openly since his 1984 debut, Yellow Earth." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 29, 2003

A Decade Under the Influence (2003)

"What's missing is anything resembling a point of view ... or the slightest sense of critical discrimination." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 29, 2003

Bruce Almighty (2003)

"It drowns [Carrey's] hilarious physicality in an ocean of sap." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 29, 2003

The Italian Job (2003)

"Paramount's new version boasts no such cultural resonance, but it's far more enjoyable than, say, X2 or The Matrix Reloaded." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 29, 2003

Tsui Hark's Vampire Hunters (The Era of Vampires) (2002)

"The Hong Kong movie industry is crumbling, and this painfully slack horror picture is another sign of its decay." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 22, 2003

The Matrix Reloaded (2003)

"Feels like a jerry-built sequel." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 14, 2003

Owning Mahowny (2003)

"[Kwietniowski] tracks his lost hero's descent with a cool, precise visual style that's humanized by Hoffman's unerring ability to seem at once dull, decent and out of control." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 1, 2003

Winged Migration (2003)

"The footage ... is astonishing both for the beauty of the birds and for its sheer technical brilliance." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted May 1, 2003

Japon (2003)

"Reygadas grapples with the most elemental of issues ... and the result is sly, touching and more than a little loony." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 24, 2003

Identity (2003)

"Enjoyably swervy." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 24, 2003

Ten (2003)

"One of the year's finest movies." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 24, 2003

City of Ghosts (2003)

"Dillon doesn't yet possess the directorial chops to give his story the necessary snap; the action too often feels poky and muffled." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 24, 2003

Better Luck Tomorrow (2002)

"Though it doesn't fully transcend its small budget (the lighting is dingy), the story feels rooted in something more solid than prefab posturing." ‐ NPR's Fresh Air
Posted Apr 10, 2003

Fellini: I'm a Born Liar (2003)

"Pettigrew assumes that Fellini was a genius, and while this film won't convince any skeptics, the maestro's fans can sink into it like a hot bath." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 10, 2003

Anger Management (2003)

"Like so many Sandler vehicles, the movie isn't actually funny, but keeps feeling as if it should be." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Apr 10, 2003

Irréversible (2002)

"The opening 50 minutes are brutal, but if you can take the punishment, you'll probably be wowed by Noé's skills as a filmmaker." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Mar 6, 2003

Tears of the Sun (2003)

"Its moral and political viewpoint is so crushingly simple-minded that one yearns for the intellectual nuance of George Bush." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Mar 6, 2003

The Life of David Gale (2003)

"Although I've never before seen Winslet flounder like this, it's Spacey who really needs help -- his desire to be St. Kevin is turning him into a joke." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Feb 20, 2003

Daredevil (2003)

"The movie has far less emotional weight than, say, Spider-Man." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Feb 20, 2003

Gerry (2003)

"Van Sant ultimately reveals so little about this odd couple that we frankly don't give a damn what happens to them." ‐ L.A. Weekly
Posted Feb 12, 2003

All the Real Girls (2003)

"Green is attuned to the poetry of ordinary life, with its longueurs and sudden bursts of deep emotion." ‐ NPR's Fresh Air
Posted Feb 12, 2003
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