Josh Goller

Josh Goller
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
My film reviews have appeared online for over 5 years at Spectrum Culture, where I also review music and books and work as an editor. I've been reviewing film in various publications for about 10 years (local weekly print publications prior to Spectrum Culture). I also review music for Slant Magazine, and I am the founder and editor-in-chief of The Molotov Cocktail lit zine, which publishes flash fiction online and in an annual print anthology. I earned my MFA in Creative Writing (Fiction) from Pacific University in 2011, and I currently reside in Portland, Oregon.
Publications: Spectrum Culture

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
2.75/5 63% The Toll (2020) While it gets a lot of mileage out of its unnerving setup and compelling characters, The Toll can't quite drive home its conclusion. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 1, 2021
3/5 68% A Glitch in the Matrix (2021) Amid the backdrop of an increasingly isolating and solipsistic world, there are fascinating ideas here, even if A Glitch in the Matrix doesn't always connect. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 9, 2021
3.25/5 81% The Night (2021) While it may not bring anything particularly new to the table, The Night nevertheless effectively assembles well-worn horror elements into a compelling atmosphere of dread. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 1, 2021
3.25/5 89% My Psychedelic Love Story (2020) Timothy Leary may be the most famous figure here, but the film's most fascinating aspect is a woman near the end of her life boasting about lurid details of her salad days. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 1, 2020
3.75/5 89% Save Yourselves! (2020) Thanks to witty dialogue between its likable characters, this techno-satire mostly feels fresh and vital even when indulging in well-worn tropes. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 5, 2020
2.75/5 62% Children of the Sea (Kaijû no Kodomo) (2020) Once the kaleidoscopic spectacle ends, we're not left with much substance. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 21, 2020
3.5/5 82% Bill & Ted Face the Music (2020) Forward-facing and not trapped in its past, this third installment offers welcome escapism amid a world that does, in fact, feel very much in need of saving. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 31, 2020
1.5/5 21% The Vanished (2020) A trifecta of implausible plot, clumsy pacing and inauthentic characters. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 26, 2020
2.75/5 77% Summerland (2020) It's a trifle, certainly, but with the world in its current state, no one should feel too guilty about indulging in Summerland's simple pleasures. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 3, 2020
3.5/5 71% Amulet (2020) Amulet is an unnervingly satisfying film that conjoins artful Rosemary's Baby-adjacent dread and Evil Dead-style ghoulishness with surprising aplomb. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 28, 2020
3.25/5 75% The Rental (2020) Dave Franco imbues well-worn horror tropes with distinctly modern anxieties, capitalizing on the inherently strange dynamic of renting someone else's personal home. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 27, 2020
2.75/5 75% I, Pastafari: A Flying Spaghetti Monster Story (2020) This exploration of an anti-religion religious movement presents a tasty concept, but its delivery is perhaps too undercooked to be nourishing. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 9, 2020
3.25/5 95% The Ghost of Peter Sellers (2020) The late comedian's impudent specter looms large, but this doc is more focused on Medak's self-reflection about a catastrophic professional failure that clearly still stings. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 28, 2020
2.5/5 78% Picture of His Life (2020) There's a sad irony in a documentary about an underwater photographer renowned for capturing striking images of creatures in their natural environments feeling so contrived. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 23, 2020
3.5/5 92% The Vast of Night (2020) The whole of what Patterson presents here transcends the sum of its parts largely due to technical proficiency and a focus on good, old-fashioned storytelling. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 30, 2020
3/5 87% 1BR (2020) 1BR's modest success doesn't stem from an originality of ideas, but in its commitment to them. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 15, 2020
1.75/5 20% The Jack in the Box (2020) Murder clowns and demonic toys have enjoyed a renaissance in recent years, but in combining the two, The Jack in the Box offers no surprises. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 8, 2020
3.25/5 88% Deerskin (2020) Deerskin lampoons the fixations and compulsions of egocentric masculinity in all its ostentatiously fringed glory. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted May 1, 2020
3/5 97% Why Don't You Just Die! (Papa, sdokhni) (2020) Gleefully preposterous, ultraviolent escapism that does just enough to avoid being one-note. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 13, 2020
3/5 72% Vivarium (2020) Vivarium's inescapable suburban dreamscape owes an aesthetic and conceptual debt to Tim Burton and Rod Serling, respectively. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 31, 2020
3.5/5 87% Swallow (2020) Swallow skewers society's ugly insistence on both putting women on a pedestal and subjugating them, encapsulated here by the striking image of a trophy wife eating dirt. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 15, 2020
3.75/5 91% The Invisible Man (2020) Crisp cinematography, fierce sound editing...and Moss' captivating performance cause The Invisible Man to leave an indelible impression. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 28, 2020
3.25/5 86% Come to Daddy (2020) Come to Daddy may not reach the frenzied, hallucinatory heights of Mandy, but even as a little brother it's not all that far off. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2020
2.5/5 28% The Rhythm Section (2020) All we're left with in the end is sharp cinematography and dull plot. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 31, 2020
4.25/5 91% Uncut Gems (2019) A stark, turbulent and mesmerizing ride-along with one man's futile navigation of late capitalism's darker and more fickle realms. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 24, 2019
2.25/5 20% The Mandela Effect (2019) The Mandela Effect spends far too much time on dry exposition, leaving little room for character development or a compelling narrative. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 10, 2019
3.5/5 91% In Fabric (2019) It's Strickland's unrepentantly gleeful approach and artful handling of absurdity that allows In Fabric to transcend its B-movie material. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2019
2.75/5 50% Earthquake Bird (2019) An underwhelming, melodramatic story that culminates in a shaky ending dooms Earthquake Bird. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2019
3/5 84% Girl on the Third Floor (2019) A compellingly campy haunted house flick that borrows heavily from elements of The Shining while effectively breathing some new life into other horror movie tropes. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 28, 2019
2.75/5 45% The Addams Family (2019) An underwhelming story and hit-or-miss jokes ultimately doom The Addams Family, not that they'd mind that in the least. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2019
4/5 71% Wrinkles the Clown (2019) Wrinkles the Clown is more Banksy than Bozo. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 9, 2019
88% The Devil and Daniel Johnston (2006) A convincing case for how the transcendence of Johnston's art stemmed from the rawness with which he expressed himself in spite of, and not due to, his demons. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 28, 2019
1.5/5 23% Zeroville (2019) Franco's incomprehensible film offers, at best, little more than a dime-store Tarantino knockoff, while at worst it isn't far from the inept self-indulgence of Tommy Wiseau. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 22, 2019
3.25/5 84% Depraved (2019) Improbably, Fessenden takes material that hews closely to Mary Shelley's classic and breathes new life into it, making a compelling, if a bit warmed-over monster movie. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 18, 2019
3.5/5 88% Freaks (2019) An uncommon combination of cerebral thrills and popcorn action. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 11, 2019
2.5 / 5 80% Good Boys (2019) Good Boys offers a mixed bag of benign vulgarity, amusing zingers and painfully strained jokes that just don't land. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 15, 2019
3/5 59% Them That Follow (2019) Hums with fierce tension, which mostly forgives its glossing over a deeper examination of what exactly drives these people. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 4, 2019
2.75/5 76% Skin (2019) A gripping interpersonal drama that nevertheless only scratches the surface of its weighty social themes. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 29, 2019
88% Pit and the Pendulum (The Pit and the Pendulum) (1961) There are few other cinematic experiences that can imitate the specific pleasure of watching Vincent Price skulk through darkened corridors holding a candelabra. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 24, 2019
94% Blue Velvet (1986) Blue Velvet captures Lynch's fixation on the contrast between purity and depravity, all while crisscrossing the line between idyllic surfaces and their vile underbellies. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 23, 2019
3.5/5 57% Pet Sematary (2019) A tauter, more crisply paced and psychologically weightier exercise in reanimating the dead in soil turned sour. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 23, 2019
4/5 89% Hereditary (2018) Steeped in profound horrors tied to grief, guilt, resentment and mental illness, Hereditary tethers itself to real-world trauma before lifting off into the supernatural. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
1.25/5 No Score Yet Dark Crimes (2018) There's not even much novelty in seeing Carrey play so aggressively against type in this oppressively artless slog. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
2.25/5 53% Bad Samaritan (2018) By devolving into unoriginal nonsense by the third act, the film is laid even lower by the fact that it actually had a lot going for it before completely falling apart. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
1.5/5 38% Backstabbing for Beginners (2018) Takes an unsexy geopolitical scandal and makes it even more drab. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
2.5/5 67% 10x10 (2018) Opts for a melodramatic thriller angle rather than psychological horror. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
3/5 92% The Endless (2018) The Endless ends up going more "Twilight Zone" than Heaven's Gate. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
3.25/5 90% Isle of Dogs (2018) Making widely beloved pets the target of a genocidal dictator leaves little room for subtlety in Anderson's latest beautifully rendered foray into stop-motion animation. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
1.75/5 16% Dear Dictator (2018) Appropriates and then drains all subversion out of its punk and revolutionary trappings in favor of contrived, melodramatic pap. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019
2/5 81% Midnighters (2018) A stilted, cringe-inducing script dooms a promising if relatively well-worn premise in a caper that telegraphs its twists from a mile away. - Spectrum Culture EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 20, 2019