Joshua Tanzer

Joshua Tanzer
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
Joshua Tanzer is the founder of <b><a href="http://www.offoffoff.com">Offoffoff.com</a></b>, the guide to alternative New York, which covers independent film, off-off-Broadway theater, local bands, dance and more. By day he's a programmer for BusinessWeek.com and he freelances for the New York Post as an entertainment writer and tabloid headline writer. ("Martha Stewart stock falling like a bad souffle" and "Adults who were spanked often get tanked" -- those were his.) He likes romantic dinners by candlelight and long walks on the beach. His turnoffs are regressive tax policy and mean people.
Favorites:
Dr. Strangelove, Lone Star, Do the Right Thing, Repo Man, The Double Life of Veronique, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Delicatessen, Casablanca, The Sweet Hereafter, To Live, The Celebration, The Ladykillers, To Kill a Mockingbird, Platoon, Brazil, Network, The Great Dictator, Peppermint Candy. Best of 2003: City of God, S21. Best I've seen recently: Maria Full of Grace, Garden State, Los Angeles Plays Itself.
Publications: Offoffoff
Location: Hoboken, New Jersey
Official Websites: offoffoff.com

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
57% Dare (2009) The movie has already made two fatal mistakes from which it has not recovered. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 6, 2010
3.25/5 60% The Definition of Insanity (2005) A movie, candid and gently self-deprecating, about the people we rely on never to achieve fame and success. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 19, 2005
3/4 75% Nine Lives (2005) The movie is pleasing in its incompleteness. It colors outside the lines. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 17, 2005
2/4 No Score Yet Escape Artists (2005) The movie is about personalities, surroundings, look and style. The atmosphere is the plot. It's, uh, plotmosphere. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2005
3/4 71% Bubble (2006) With an almost-reality style much like (but far down the socioeconomic scale from) 'K Street', it might have an impact on the arthouse audience and on American filmmaking. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2005
2.5/4 62% Land of Plenty (2004) A caricature that indicts, if not our actual country, then a rather similar country that an outsider imagines America to be. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2005
2/4 83% Through the Forest (À travers la forêt) (2005) Quick, what's the first thing you do as a director trying to make yourself seem cool, besides editing the movie backwards? Right! You shoot your scenes in one continuous shot. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 5, 2005
3/4 82% One Bright Shining Moment: The Forgotten Summer of George McGovern (2005) This is an excellent time to remind ourselves of this story. Another McGovern would have been a good thing to have the last five years. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 22, 2005
3/4 83% The Constant Gardener (2005) It would be nice to see Meirelles apply himself to looser, earthier, fleshier films in the future. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 7, 2005
2.5/4 85% 2046 (2005) 'Did you get it?' Guy 1 asked Guy 2 in the men's room after seeing 2046. 'Yeah...,' said Guy 2. 'I think so. ... Maybe.' - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 15, 2005
4/4 72% Mondovino (2005) Mondovino is not a movie that swirls some wine around in a glass and admires the color and praises the bouquet and speaks of the wine's 'complexity' and uses the whole experience as some kind of rarefied metaphor for middle-aged angst. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 9, 2005
3.25/4 No Score Yet The Education of Shelby Knox (2005) She has the courage to maintain a loud, clear voice of honesty in the kingdom of hypocrisy. As Shelby tells a radio interviewer: 'I'm kinda scary to tangle with. Sorry.' - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 8, 2005
3.5/4 No Score Yet After the Day Before (2004) This is one of those movies that you either click with or don't. But for those who do, it's a shot of mental adrenaline. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 8, 2005
4/4 80% Oldboy (2005) Three couples were talking out loud as the film started. But before I could give them the traditional New York 'Shut the #%*& Up,' the movie shut them the #%*& up for me. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 7, 2005
3/4 67% Nightingale in a Music Box (2004) There is a little action and suspense involved, but the adventure is mostly mental. It works because it's smart, and because of the performances of the two leads. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 13, 2005
3/4 88% The Syrian Bride (2005) What do you suppose happens when a woman in the Golan Heights decides to marry a man on the other side of the Syrian border? What happens is an international incident. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 10, 2005
1.5/4 60% Winter Solstice (2005) Sternfeld started with well-conceived characters and simply didn't succeed in making them flesh. These people have traits instead of personalities; goals instead of dreams. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 8, 2005
2/4 24% 9 Songs (2005) Good movie sex without the good movie. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2005
0.5/4 No Score Yet My Suicidal Sweetheart (Crazy for Love) (2005) Parness is a tourist in the land of mental illness, sitting in the air-conditioned tour bus of his mind looking out at the people below & scratching his head for clumsy jokes. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2005
2/4 68% Cape of Good Hope (2005) Dog lovers may give Cape of Good Hope an extra star and a half for the way it uses the canine world to slyly comment on the human world. Cat people can go either way. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2005
2.5/4 87% Junebug (2005) It takes one of two things to cut through the critic's desensitized haze - either a smashingly original idea, or the same old ideas re-envisioned with unusual grace. Junebug is a nice example of the second. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2005
3.5/4 88% The Real Dirt on Farmer John (2007) If we were better people than we are, we'd all be interested in a documentary about the difficulties of farming life - and the central character wouldn't have to be a cross-dressing, movie-making, play-writing, hippie-loving free spirit. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2005
1.5/4 70% The World (2005) It offers us nostalgia for the present. Remember when we joined the global village? Remember your first cell phone? Remember text messaging? Wow, those were some crazy times. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 22, 2005
3.25/4 No Score Yet Crying Out Love, In the Center of the World (2004) If every audience-manipulating, tear-jerking romance picture were like Crying Out Love, it would give audience-manipulating, tear-jerking romance pictures a good name. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 19, 2005
3.5/4 No Score Yet Frozen (2005) It's tempting to call this something like 'Hitchcock for the prozac generation,' except it's not clear that prozac has made it to this part of the frigid north. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 15, 2005
3.5/4 82% Private (2005) Saverio Costanzo has a two-state solution for the Middle East -- one state in the living room and the other in the bedroom. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2005
2.5/4 100% The Hero (O Herói) (2005) Despite the film's obviousness, it does illustrate the many ways war rends society. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2005
2/4 86% The Intruder (L'Intrus) (2005) It's intended to puzzle us -- and sure, the little puzzles peppered throughout the film are fine. It's the grand non-sequiturs that are distracting. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2005
1.5/4 No Score Yet Holy Lola (2004) Aha! The bad guys are the Americans with their big bucks and heartless capitalism, ruining the world for the humble French. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2005
3.25/4 94% The Best of Youth (La meglio gioventù) (2003) Here's the way you want see the film -- the first two hours in your 20s, the middle two hours in your 40s, and the last two hours in your 60s. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 21, 2005
3.5/4 91% Downfall (Der Untergang) (2004) We start with the human Hitler. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 25, 2005
3.25/4 91% Million Dollar Baby (2004) There's something about boxing - a.k.a. the most barbaric sport on earth - that the camera loves. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 4, 2005
3.5/4 No Score Yet One Shot (2003) A dark, intense exploration of what the assassin's job -- with its secret thrill and its psychological weight -- demands of the people who carry it out. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 23, 2004
3.25/4 No Score Yet The Watershed (2005) It's an important window into one of the basic building blocks of American society -- the dysfunctional family. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 8, 2004
2.5/4 100% Des épaules solides (2003) Unlike an American, this Swiss girl is worried that her breasts are too big and her thighs are too small. And as for boys - well, she's mostly interested in outrunning them. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 5, 2004
2/4 No Score Yet Grande École (2004) At least it doesn't lack passion. It's just disappointing whenever the characters feel the need to put their clothes back on. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 3, 2004
3.5/4 87% Lightning in a Bottle (2004) This concert, dressing up the blues in its funeral-home best for one last bash at Radio City, seems like a eulogy for this patrimonial art form. Why did it leave us so soon? - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 27, 2004
1/4 80% Woman is the Future of Man (2004) Everyone ends up in bed. Given that, you'd expect this to be good, racy fun. Given its thinky title, you might at least expect it to be, in some way, profound. It is neither. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 20, 2004
2/4 74% Or (My Treasure) (2007) Earnest and, for at least its first half, plotless. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 4, 2004
4/4 55% Undertow (2004) After the opening credits alone, the two women next to me let out gasps of - what? Pain? Shock? Disbelief? Anger? Whatever it was, this was only the beginning. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 3, 2004
1.5/4 80% Triple Agent (2003) I should share one helpful tip for staying awake through the whole two-hour exercise - sit in front of someone who snores. It worked for me. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 1, 2004
2.5/4 92% Tarnation (2004) I didn't enjoy Tarnation, I didn't like it, I didn't particularly want to stay and watch it - but I respect it. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 1, 2004
3.5/4 21% September Tapes (2004) It yanks us eyes-first into a place that we, in our living rooms, have known only as a cliché. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 24, 2004
3/4 45% Particles of Truth (2003) Particles of Truth is a low-budget indie that first seems scattered and off-putting but in time reveals its writer-director's considerable ability and artistic sense. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 18, 2004
3/4 48% Silver City (2004) Sayles has made many movies like this, and they've ranged from genius (Lone Star) to just average (City of Hope). Silver City falls in-between. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 17, 2004
1.5/4 32% When Will I Be Loved (2004) Can't we at least pretend that we didn't get into the film business so we could meet beautiful actresses and desperate starlets? Guess not. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 15, 2004
1/4 34% What the Bleep Do We Know!? (2004) The 'Bleep' in What the Bleep Do We Know? stands for only one of the three words the film dares not say. The other two are 'Transcendental' and 'Meditation.' - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 8, 2004
2.5/4 No Score Yet Terra Incognita (2002) Everything we see seems to spring from the idea of cleavages, and the film itself reflects that -- it's constructed from isolated scenes without flow. - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 2, 2004
0/4 95% Hero (2004) The truly jaw-dropping thing about Hero is how it instantaneously turns from 'Crouching Tiger II' to 'Honey I Shot the Dissidents.' - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 25, 2004
2/4 40% High Tension (Switchblade Romance) (2005) I can't think of a better review of Haute Tension than the one given by the guy sitting behind me in the theater. I quote: 'HAHAHAHA! OH SH**! HAHA!' - Offoffoff EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2004