Ken Eisner

Ken Eisner
Ken Eisner's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer® when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Variety Georgia Straight
Publications: Variety, Georgia Straight
Official Websites: straight.com

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
90% King of the Ants (2003) Although it starts out engagingly enough, King of the Ants can't decide whether it wants to be a horror flick, a neo-noir crime caper, or psychological thriller with slasher inclinations. The genre confusion is fatal. - Variety EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2020
No Score Yet Keepers of the Magic (2016) An endlessly fascinating, if initially somewhat disorganized, tour of key image makers of the past 50 years. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 16, 2020
82% Listen Up Philip (2014) An odd vagueness of intention dissipates the energy of this initially bracing study of a novelist. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted May 6, 2020
92% Beanpole (Dylda) (2020) The movie's fluid camerawork, set detail, and deeply saturated greens and shocking reds help mitigate the gloom. And the acting is top-notch, especially considering that most of the players are non-professionals. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 13, 2020
100% To Live to Sing (2019) It's essentially a "let's put on a show to save our beloved roller rink" story, given fresh life in a classical setting. Mainly, it gives us a chance to observe the quirky relationships between the players. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 12, 2020
64% Hope Gap (2020) There's considerable wit on display, but little in the way of character detail and background that would distinguish this marital breakdown from countless others. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 12, 2020
83% The Whistlers (2020) A delightful mixtape of a movie you'll want to whistle along with more than once. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 12, 2020
48% Greed (2020) It's a testimony to Coogan's comic talents and our unhealthy fascination with unbridled wealth that we somehow keep rooting for the guy, even as every layer of the monetary onion is pulled back by writer-director Michael Winterbottom. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 5, 2020
88% Sorry We Missed You (2020) For Ken Loach, now 82 but still tirelessly documenting the underclass, indentured servitude is a subject that never gets old, since it constantly assumes new forms. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 5, 2020
88% I Was at Home, But... (Ich war zuhause, aber...) (2020) Too much of this stilted installation piece is like a Jeff Wall photograph come to life, delivering details that mostly prove to be less interesting than what your imagination would have supplied. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 5, 2020
98% Vitalina Varela (2020) Everyone is hitting their marks just so, in order to create the perfect doorway silhouette and such -- the kind of thing that has vast power in a still photograph but somehow loses its magic when you see exactly what went into it. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 5, 2020
20% The Jesus Rolls (2020) There are perhaps worse ideas than spinning off side characters from the Coen brothers' cult fave The Big Lebowski. But why it needed to be hair-netted bowling bully Jesus Quintana is known only to John Turturro. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2020
93% The Twentieth Century (2020) 90 whirligig minutes of confusingly titled cinematic madness for the fatally discriminating viewer. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2020
87% Emma. (2020) The two-hour tale lurches from farce to darkish social satire to thoughtful character study with few indicators that the main narrative can support that kind of carriage-shifting. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2020
93% Ordinary Love (2020) It's startling how many tones, textures, and rhythms the filmmakers find within a narrow range of settings... This adds up to a surprisingly fleet 90 minutes, although the film's satisfying pull is ultimately down to the leads. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 20, 2020
75% Botero (2018) Makes a pretty good case for taking the artist more seriously. For one thing, his political art gets a necessary airing here. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 18, 2020
98% Portrait of a Lady on Fire (Portrait de la jeune fille en feu) (2020) Céline Sciamma, who previously assayed more contemporary studies with Tomboy and Girlhood, here strikes the perfect balance between smart social parable, formal composition, and soulful contemplation of the tools -- and limits -- of art itself. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 13, 2020
92% The Assistant (2020) It's just one person going through the motions in an unspecified place and time. But The Assistant speaks eloquently to the Right Now. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 13, 2020
84% The Traitor (2020) A satisfying saga from the great Italian filmmaker Marco Bellocchio... First and foremost, the film benefits from the riveting performance of Pierfrancesco Favino. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 6, 2020
100% 2020 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Documentary (2020) Viewers of this Oscar program should listen to a girl in that opening skateboarding flick, who advises, "Don't act fragile. This is a place for tough people!" - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 4, 2020
89% 2020 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Live Action (2020) Many forms of sibling fealty are tested in this gratifyingly consistent batch of scripted shorts, clocking in at roughly 20 solid minutes each. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 3, 2020
98% Corpus Christi (Boze cialo) (2020) Corpus Christi is surprisingly entertaining, sometimes funny fare, with a soft colour palette, smart dialogue, and enough graceful repose to provoke deeper thought. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2020
95% 2020 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Animation (2020) With any luck, this curiously uneven program will be capped by the terrific "Maestro", a French-made two minutes of Italian opera performed by nocturnal forest animals. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2020
45% Quezon's Game (2020) Limits to the budget and acting ability dampen its vision, but the script is surprisingly frank about the island-packed country's rocky road to independence. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2020
75% The Gentlemen (2020) The cast [has] so much fun with familiar material it's not difficult to simply yield to their judgement in picking scripts and packing heat. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 27, 2020
88% Les Misérables (2020) [Director Ladj Ly] has as much sympathetic grasp of the law-enforcement side as he does of the polyglot population. Ly leavens the grit with deft, dark humor. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 23, 2020
89% Cunningham (2019) The 90-minute film may not cohere into an overwhelming whole... But its subject will prove inspiring to many artists struggling with the meaning of their own work. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 23, 2020
59% The Last Full Measure (2020) A moving if somewhat self-congratulating effort, The Last Full Measure is as much a tribute to aging A-list actors as it is to the Vietnam veterans they so lovingly portray. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 23, 2020
21% Like a Boss (2020) It's hard to say if this strikingly unfunny effort, led by a notably affable cast, would be better if it wasn't written and directed by men. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2020
91% Clemency (2019) The filmmaker's commitment to utter seriousness is admirable, if ultimately stultifying. What sticks are the day-to-day penitentiary scenes, which show the truly deadening effects of a place where mortality is front and centre at every moment. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2020
No Score Yet The Whale & The Raven (2019) The overhead shots of this gorgeous, if precarious, landscape are worth the price of your passage. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 9, 2020
93% Invisible Life (A vida invisível de Eurídice Gusmão) (2019) The acting is uneven, the sets slapdash. But the biggest problem, especially for a director as experienced as Madame Satã's Karim Aïnouz, working from Martha Batalha's book of the same name, is that its characters aren't convincingly developed. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 9, 2020
69% DOSED (2020) The subject is nonetheless so (re)new to cinema that Dosed represents a door of perception well worth walking through. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 23, 2019
68% Bombshell (2019) Timely and cleverly engaging. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 23, 2019
No Score Yet Menteur (2019) he movie, written by veteran comic director Émile Gaudreault and two others, ratchets up enough manic fun to at least gesture at something deeper. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2019
81% A Hidden Life (2019) Apart from some clever use of old newsreel footage, the film's three hours must be spent with distantly murmuring folks either tilling the earth or staring at the sky. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2019
98% 63 Up (2019) The steadfast subjects-10 men and, still shockingly, only four women-have gone through the usual life changes. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2019
96% Booksmart (2019) This fun, fast-moving film is a directorial debut for Olivia Wilde, who helped polish a script kicking around for a decade-one written by four women, not to the detriment of its general cohesion and frequent hilarity. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 16, 2019
17% The Kindness of Strangers (2020) The cast is stellar-Stella!-but everyone checks out long before it's all over. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2019
89% The Two Popes (2019) The multilingual movie can be viewed as an advanced acting class. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2019
97% Knives Out (2019) A celebration of storytelling itself. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 11, 2019
83% Queen & Slim (2019) The timeliness and powerful intentions of Queen & Slim are inarguable, as are the talents on display. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 10, 2019
56% Frankie (2019) The whole thing feels too hastily written (or improvised) to carry much weight, and you would think such a slight tale would compensate with stylish aesthetics. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2019
95% Antigone (2019) The stuff that lands carries a wallop. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2019
98% Varda by Agnès (2019) This retrospective is exactly what you want right now. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2019
57% Stand! (2020) Director Robert Adetuyi...makes a strong impression on a low budget, and marshals large groups of people in dynamic ways. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 2, 2019
94% Marriage Story (2019) Baumbach finds raucous humour and wry insight throughout. Happily for the two-and-a-quarter-hour running time, he keeps a sharp eye on entertainment value. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 2, 2019
89% Dark Waters (2019) More than the waters are dark in this timely, meaningful, but ultimately soft-landing environmental drama. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 2, 2019
53% 21 Bridges (2019) As forgettable as its title. - Georgia Straight EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2019
70% Hamlet (2000) Campbell Scott's self-helmed Great Dane is more than ever a man for our time... the veteran thesp - who returns to the role after several legit runs - injects considerable humor and lots of edgy anger into his screen version. - Variety EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2019