Jonathan Kiefer Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

Jonathan Kiefer

Jonathan Kiefer
Jonathan Kiefer's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): PopMatters, Salon.com, Village Voice, Sacramento News & Review, SF Weekly

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
83% Merchants Of Doubt (2015) Food, Inc. director Robert Kenner has turned it into a redundant, formally uninventive, Food, Inc.-like documentary‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
63% All The Wilderness (2015) Someone ought to get Kodi Smit-McPhee a comedy. A dark one, of course.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
14% Kill Me Three Times (2015) This is wrung-out neo-noir with no true blackness left intact, like a soggy heap of faded laundry.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
32% Cut Bank (2015) Were Cut Bank not a movie but a pilot, with room and inclination to grow, maybe it could seem like more than just a hasty mash-up.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
31% Desert Dancer (2015) We didn't need a pseudo-Persian Footloose to imagine dance as a means of political resistance, but surely there's no harm in drawing inspiration from [Andrew] Ghaffarian's bravely creative life.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
35% Can't Stand Losing You (2015) Semi stiff voiceover readings from his memoir One Train Later make Summers sound like a hostage‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
83% Dior and I (2015) Dior and I seems like the movie equivalent of one of those glossy multipage ad spreads that thicken up your favorite perfume-scented magazines - or, at best, an extended and extremely haute episode of Project Runway.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
39% Misery Loves Comedy (2014) [Kevin] Pollak isn't taking a solve-for-x approach here so much as simply geeking out with his fellow tribesmen (and a few -women), who may or may not be your favorite funny people, anyway.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
48% Adult Beginners (2015) Not surprisingly for a Duplass-brothers production, Adult Beginners gets its freshest juice out of low-boiled intra-sibling strife‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
49% The D Train (2015) Unexpected developments ensue, including actual hilarity, amazing [Jack] Black-[James] Marsden chemistry, and a scorched-earth subversion of the default homophobia that's otherwise so common to movies like this.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
59% Saint Laurent (2015) Saint Laurent is aesthetically rich, with exacting production design and a semi-jaundiced sepia hue that periodically evokes the brittleness of an aging newspaper.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
74% Inherent Vice (2015) Inherent Vice is one of those movies that tries to put across its maker's lack of control as a conscious and meaningful aesthetic scheme. ‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
84% I Am Big Bird: The Caroll Spinney Story (2015) A slathering of sentimentally triumphant music emphasizes what seems like a feeling of protectiveness for their subject, but fair enough.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
55% Spare Parts (2015) The movie sometimes seems almost like an abridgment of or commercial for itself. But Lopez sneaks his humor in gently, remaining a faithful servant of the story and its hopeful message.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
55% Little Accidents (2015) If this story seems inorganic, or in any case less authentic than its well-observed atmosphere, at least the storyteller has seen and seized an opportunity. Here's hoping she'll have more.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
67% Dark Star: HR Giger's World (2015) [H.R.] Giger's work tapped into the otherwise unremembered trauma of the perinatal journey; all he really knew was that in general he put his exquisitely creepy visions on canvas to keep them from freaking him out.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
89% A Most Violent Year (2015) A Most Violent Year might disappoint some viewers by stoking unfair expectations.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
97% Two Days, One Night (2014) [Two Days] may work as a dissertation on the trickling consequences of economic downturn, but what's more important is that it works, bracingly, as a drama.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
51% In the Name of My Daughter (2015) A true crime story of money and power and sex and betrayal and missing persons and the mafia, André Téchiné's French Riviera-set film stars Catherine Deneuve as a casino owner and still somehow manages to be dull.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
34% Song One (2015) Song One seems unabashedly fond of romantic rooftop wee-hours hangouts in front of Manhattan skyline bokeh backdrops. It's all tenderness and no cynicism in this little world.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
52% Road Hard (2015) Next time, road harder?‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
15% Aloft (2015) Aloft may have arisen from some unique personal mythology of maternalism, but it's brought down by abridgment, freezing out the feeling of whatever tragic pietà its maker may intend.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
86% The Tales of Hoffmann (1951) A pinnacle of Technicolor expressionism, The Tales of Hoffmann is one of history's strangest, most sumptuous somethings-you-don't-see-every-day.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
86% Who Is Henry Jaglom? (1995) [A] fun, jaunty portrait.‐ Sacramento News & Review
Read More | Posted Feb 13, 2017
88% Tangerines (2015) It's powered by casually great, lived-in acting, particularly from Lembit Ulfsak as the old man under whose roof the gruff Chechen mercenary and his sensitive young Georgian foe find themselves facing off.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Oct 31, 2016
98% The Babadook (2014) There are legitimate terrors here -- legitimate because, as any bleary-eyed parent will verify, they come from a real and terrible place. And for those who do enjoy at least some defiance of natural laws, The Babadook has that too.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Oct 5, 2016
94% Disneynature Monkey Kingdom (2015) Minor ethical questions do linger... But the higher-level mission here, to engender fascination among young viewers, is well accomplished.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2016
70% Puzzle (2011) [Smirnoff] doesn't really get into the subculture of competitive puzzling, and that's a mercy. Her priority is clear and refreshingly simple: to glimpse and celebrate a narrow life ever so slightly broadening.‐ SF360
Read More | Posted Mar 30, 2016
86% Cheatin' (2015) Movement is of the essence here, and it's really something to see these irrepressibly protean figures put through their emotional paces.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2016
99% Selma (2015) Ultimately, what makes DuVernay's movie so good and necessary is that it actually lets us see the arc of the moral universe bending -- being bent, by human will -- toward justice.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2016
98% Iris (2015) Although mostly a loose and unchallenging portrait, Iris is of value to the documentary field if only for taking a stand, however casual, against drabness.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2016
72% American Sniper (2015) American Sniper is not the nuanced trauma-of-violence conversation our country needs.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2016
99% About Elly (2015) Clever, compassionate, and completely riveting.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 2, 2016
85% Far From the Madding Crowd (2015) This may not be the most innovative literary update, but as a new episode of an old game show, it's a swoon-worthy knockout.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
100% The Cult of JT LeRoy (2014) Sturm's The Cult of JT LeRoy offers a sober yet somewhat punch-drunk reminder of what it felt like when the local literary wunderkind with a disturbingly tragic past was shown to possess an even more disturbingly tragic future.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
83% Cinderella (2015) Even allowing that Blanchett wrings a wee bit of actual pathos from the added backstory of her character's bitterness, these performances, like the CG concessions of animated animals, are irritatingly overdone.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
17% The Gunman (2015) Trinca fares the worst in this dour dudes' club, with Penn even seeming to hog all the gratuitous waist-up nudity; even in a bedroom scene with his distressed damsel, she's the only one wearing his shirt.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
100% Un condamné à mort s'est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut (A Man Escaped) (1957) It's coolly comforting to recall how the innocence that lay shattered in the wake of World War II wasn't America's alone - just as it's heartening to rediscover the improbable beauty within the bleak scenario of A Man Escaped.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
97% An Honest Liar (2015) An Honest Liar does entertainingly allow that for our peculiar species, true self-awareness sometimes requires a little self-deception.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
16% Serena (2015) Well, Serena isn't great, but it's better than the lousy reputation that precedes it. ‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
78% Danny Collins (2015) This lost-letter episode actually happened to British folk musician Steve Tilston - who seems more grounded, and more interesting, than the caricature that is Danny Collins.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
65% A Girl Like Her (2015) Well-intentioned but belabored, Weber's documentary conceit ultimately saps the story of its truthfulness and is therefore self-defeating.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
81% 3 Hearts (3 coeurs) (2015) Its scenery is attractive, its camera moves crisp, but the story itself remains lazily elliptical and contrived.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
89% White God (2015) Reads as a stylized conceit, undercut by too many little moments when performances, from human and canine alike, don't truthfully express what the movie says they do.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
80% Ned Rifle (2015) It's as close to an adding-up as can be expected from any thrifty trilogy spread out over three decades, but surely a testament to enduring indie integrity.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
93% I'll See You in My Dreams (2015) It's light touches all around, with everybody seeming to have gotten the emotional availability memo.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Jan 1, 2016
83% Testament Of Youth (2015) As this is a film about a witness bearer, it does well to capitalize on Vikander's perpetually observant eyes, which convey tenderness, intelligence, shock, incomprehension, comprehension, resiliency, and finally wisdom.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2015
85% The Wolfpack (2015) As if to air out any whiff of freakshow exploitation, Moselle tends to observe and not to impose. She's touchingly receptive to the boys' stories, and evidently aware that in her presentation they can become indistinguishable‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2015
79% Infinitely Polar Bear (2015) Infinitely Polar Bear just rolls along, leaking all reserves of authenticity. You could argue that feeling aimless and oddly hollow actually is the right way for a film to reflect the close observer's experience of mental illness.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2015
76% Jimmy's Hall (2015) Even an ultimately forgettable effort from this esteemed social-realist director can't help but achieve eloquence in its affirmation of basic human decency.‐ SF Weekly
Read More | Posted Dec 31, 2015