Marc Savlov

Marc Savlov
Tomatometer-approved critic

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
4/5 97% Wojnarowicz (2021) McKim's documentary is as jangly and urgent as its subject and his art, and it packs a melancholy wallop, using the artist's own running commentary via cassette tape. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2021
96% Alien on Stage (2020) Inspiring and uplifting in equal amounts, Harvey and Kummer's fangs-and-all documentary is, like its subject, one of a kind. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 24, 2021
82% Gaia (2021) Fans of Jeff VanderMeer's "Southern Reach Trilogy" and its Annihilation adaptation, and lovers of the defiantly feminine and vengeful natural world will find plenty to chew on in Gaia. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 24, 2021
88% The Hunt for Planet B (2021) Director Nathaniel Kahn's documentary ranges far afield from just the challenges of building the James Webb under constant threat of budgetary cuts. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2021
No Score Yet Dark State (2021) That might be your cup of Bilderbergian-flavored hydroxychloroquine paranoiac politics but I found it to be yet another depressing reminder of how far we've fallen. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 18, 2021
2.5/5 37% The Marksman (2021) Sometimes it's best to just keep things simple and comfortingly familiar, cliched though they may be. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2021
3.5/5 94% Beautiful Something Left Behind (2020) Through it all Philps keeps her camera low the better to represent the children's as-yet-unformed POV, both literally and emotionally. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 12, 2021
3/5 95% The Twentieth Century (2020) It ends up being a smashingly good and goofball history of the non-world of Canadian history and flim-flammery, deeply committed to its own colonial crazy. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 1, 2020
1/5 27% Jiu Jitsu (2020) Jiu Jitsu's weakest link may be its lousy fight choreography which is shot wide and low with stunt doubles who seem like they could really use a good nap. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2020
1.5/5 56% Mortal (Torden) (2020) Mortal plods along for most of its running time with the occasional helicopter chase scene and plenty of CGI fulminology: But ultimately Ovredal's not-so-deep-dive into Norwegian mythos is a too-obvious let down. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2020
3.5/5 93% Possessor: Uncut (2020) Untangling that hazy, convoluted storyline amidst all the heavily stylized carnage and outright nihilism may be the film's biggest drawback, but presumably that's exactly what Cronenberg intended. All is surreal, illusory, and forbidding. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 1, 2020
3/5 81% Space Dogs (2019) Space Dogs is more meditatively Tarkovskian than History Channel fodder. Kremser and Peter employ plenty of archival and often painful-to-watch footage of these unwitting animal pioneers; they were not "boldly going," but rather "uncomprehendingly sent." - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 24, 2020
3/5 67% I've Got Issues (2020) A message from the universal spirit, perhaps, and most certainly one that carries even more meaningful weight right now than director Collins could've ever suspected way back in the before-times. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 24, 2020
1.5/5 59% Shortcut (2020) The kindest thing I can say for Shortcut is that the briefly-glimpsed practical monster effects by Rome-based EFX outfit Makinarium (Zoolander 2) are nicely done. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 24, 2020
3.5/5 100% Made in Bangladesh (2020) The portrait [Hossain] paints, while visually arresting thanks to cinematographer Sabine Lancelin's eye for Dhaka's colorfully saturated and gritty milieu, is a grim one. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 4, 2020
3.5/5 100% Coup 53 (2020) Coup 53 is a historical documentary that plays more like All the President's Men had it been written by John le Carré with a dash of Costa-Gavras and Manchurian Candidate John Frankenheimer. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 20, 2020
3/5 73% The Prey (2020) Cinematographer Lucas Gath does a terrific job immersing the viewer in the wilds of Cambodia's own "green hell" and there's more than enough kung-fu versus bokator bone-breaking brawling to satisfy even the hardest of hardcore genre fans. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 20, 2020
4/5 93% Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets (2020) Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets is as real as it gets, a snapshot stolen from the very year everything turned to shit. It's a masterpiece. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 23, 2020
3.5/5 82% Hill of Freedom (Jayuui Eondeok) (2020) That may sound like some terribly serious arthouse navel-gazing, but ultimately Hill of Freedom is surprisingly satisfying in its sheer - albeit abjectly disjointed - fish-out-of-water ordinariness. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 12, 2020
98% Kiki's Delivery Service (1989) Miyazaki conjures a pubescent fable out of whole cloth that both kids and adults will enjoy immensely, and with the late Phil Hartman on board as Kiki's wiseacre feline familiar, there's many more comic moments than in the director's later work. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 11, 2020
73% Haunters (2010) Director Kim [Min-suk] manages to surprise at nearly every turn, setting up audience expectations and then gleefully knocking them down, one after another, like an intricate pattern of dominoes. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted May 8, 2020
1.5/5 35% Impractical Jokers: The Movie (2020) I could watch the infamous McKay-helmed Ferrell short The Landlord on a loop for 93 minutes and laugh myself into hypoxia, as opposed to the nap Impractical Jokers left me craving. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 12, 2020
2/5 88% Onward (2020) Onward is visually dazzling, which is no surprise given those involved. But the simplistic, cookie-cutter storyline, which verges on the video game-esque without really being as fun as a supercool video game, is a letdown. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 5, 2020
1.5/5 10% Brahms: The Boy II (2020) Quoth the other, more bewhiskered and musically inclined Brahms, "The only true immortality lies in one's children." Oh, Johannes, if only you knew. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2020
3/5 74% The Photograph (2020) You don't need to bring a handkerchief into the theatre for fear of ocular leakage, but The Photograph's modestly hopeful denouement is, truly, picture perfect. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 20, 2020
3.5/5 86% Come to Daddy (2020) Come to Daddy is a stylistically impressive and disconcertingly lovely shot across the absurdist bow that plays havoc with genre conventions and as such impresses with its utterly unique take on father/son reunification and the perils thereof. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 6, 2020
2/5 76% Spies in Disguise (2019) Spies in Disguise is a fair-to-middling example of a movie that knows its core demographic and rarely bothers to aim higher than, oh, 4 foot, 4 inches. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2019
4/5 81% A Hidden Life (2019) [August] Diehl's performance is a model of restraint; he more often imparts information by a look, a glance, the slump of his shoulders, than he does with a spoken word. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2019
3.5/5 100% Mickey and the Bear (2019) Even at its most dire, Mickey and the Bear is tinged with an almost holy hope for all involved, a rare and remarkable feat to pull off so well for a first-time director indeed. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2019
4/5 84% Waves (2019) Waves is both incrementally unnerving and eventually exultant, a pitch-perfect portrait of post-millennial teenage life, with all of its ultra-adrenalized emotions, fraught expectations, and fateful, rash decisions. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2019
3/5 63% The Good Liar (2019) The Good Liar is a pleasantly playful thriller hiding a seriously shady history close to its benighted heart. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2019
2/5 58% Frankie (2019) The ensemble cast is uniformly first-rate, but Sachs' moribund movie is a slog. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2019
3/5 41% Midway (2019) Despite the carnage and horrors galore, the script treats the Enemy as every bit as human as Our Boys, right up until their bitter, briny end. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 7, 2019
88% The Obituary of Tunde Johnson (2019) The Obituary of Tunde Johnson takes an eerily unique and effective aim at the ongoing slaughter of young black men by white police officers. Tunde stands in for those whose keening obituaries we've already read. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 1, 2019
3.5/5 97% Dolemite Is My Name (2019) Add it all up and My Name Is Dolemite is a wicked return to form for [Eddie] Murphy, who absolutely nails [Rudy Ray] Moore's straight outta West Hollywood brio and never-say-die single-mindedness. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2019
86% Iron Fists and Kung Fu Kicks (2019) For a documentary so heavily front-loaded with well-researched observations on both the cinema of Kung Fu and the genre's persistent presence in the real world, Iron Fists... is a deliriously fun ride. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 4, 2019
100% 4x4 (2019) The success of [Mariano] Cohn's film rests almost entirely on the performance of [Peter] Lanzani, and he turns in a remarkable performance that runs the gamut of emotions from disbelief to dawning horror as the reality of his plight begins to sink in. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 4, 2019
4/5 80% Jojo Rabbit (2019) It's a coming of age story unlike any other, filled with the director's trademark heart and a soul-stirring argument against the ever ready darkness of unswerving, "patriotic" nationalism. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 4, 2019
4.5/5 92% Monos (2019) A pure cinematic experience like Monos is a rare and precious gem. Colombian director [Alejandro] Landes has created a surreal, sumptuous assault on the senses that's as lushly beautiful as it is unforgettable. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 26, 2019
1/5 26% Rambo: Last Blood (2019) At just under an hour and a half, [Rambo: Last Blood] still feels padded with pointless moments that do little to advance an already obvious outcome. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 26, 2019
3/5 100% Desolation Center (2019) Desolation Center illuminates a short-lived but absolutely momentous time when the Mojave beckoned, free of charge and front-loaded with anarchic artistic overload. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 19, 2019
3/5 90% Riot Girls (2019) Riot Girls doesn't disappoint in the mayhem department, and as a meta-story about female empowerment in an increasingly threatening "men's world," this wild and woolly take on teen-angsters past would make Furiosa herself cheer. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 12, 2019
4/5 62% It Chapter Two (2019) Sure, It Chapter Two runs nearly three hours long, but unless you suffer from sciatica or, God help you, coulrophobia, it's a helluva ride and a fitting capstone to the best cinematic Stephen King adaptation in recent memory. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2019
4/5 95% Raise Hell: The Life & Times of Molly Ivins (2019) It's a rare documentary indeed that so expertly captures the singular essence of its subject, and [Molly] Ivins is restored to vivid and vital life, if not in the flesh than in the mind and spirit. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 29, 2019
3.5/5 83% Cold Case Hammarskjöld (2019) Six years in the making, Cold Case Hammarskjöld is by far [Mads] Brügger's most ambitious and engrossing documentary. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 22, 2019
2.5/5 77% Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (2019) This lifelong lover of all things dark, dank, and dreadful thinks that it could have been so much more effective sans the pointed polemics. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 9, 2019
4/5 85% Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (2019) Firmly rooted in the Tarantinoverse, Once Upon a Time is an elegiac mash note to Hollywood 1969, at times sublimely, almost surrealistically moving while simultaneously managing to be the director's funniest and least violent film to date. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 29, 2019
4/5 98% Maiden (2019) [Alex] Holmes' documentary is as inspirational and empowering as it is frothily exhilarating. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 25, 2019
2/5 42% Stuber (2019) Director [Michael] Dowse has some terrific comedies on his CV, but the mildly, kinda/sorta-entertaining-if-you've-got-nothing-better-to-do Stuber isn't one of them. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 11, 2019
4/5 97% Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am (2019) Vigorous and forever fierce, and sporting a range of talents so impressive as to be virtually incomprehensible to us lesser creatives and activists who nonetheless seek our own artistic destinies, Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am is required viewing. - Austin Chronicle EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 5, 2019