Megan Basham

Megan Basham
Tomatometer-approved critic
Publications: National Review, WORLD

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
No Score Yet The Pursuit (2019) The film doesn't build arguments likely to persuade viewers who don't already share Brooks' views. Other documentaries cover slices of the same territory with greater depth. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted May 28, 2019
3/5 57% Aladdin (2019) Strikes just the right balance: It honors the original enough to feel pleasantly nostalgic while still offering enough new scenes, characters, and jokes to make this version worth our time. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted May 23, 2019
52% Tolkien (2019) A life as singular as John Ronald Reuel Tolkien's shouldn't feel as if it's been crafted from outtakes of Dead Poets Society. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted May 9, 2019
57% The Highwaymen (2019) There's no question it indicts the media for heroizing the wrong people. But that would be just another us vs. them movie, and The Highwaymen is smarter than that... - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 26, 2019
94% Avengers: Endgame (2019) The biggest box Endgame needed to check was to do justice to the array of personalities that audiences have come to love. Even given the three-hour runtime, its success in giving all of them their due is no mean feat. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2019
47% Dumbo (2019) It's fine, but far too familiar and doesn't hold a candle (or a feather) to the original little elephant that could. - National Review EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2019
3/5 47% Dumbo (2019) Instead of a rodent manager with a Brooklyn accent to kill, we get the same old undistinguished child allies facing down corporate greed. It's fine but far too familiar and doesn't hold a candle (or a feather) to the original little elephant that could. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
76% Abducted in Plain Sight (2017) Borgman handles these confessions responsibly. A lot of painful truth -- about the escalating nature of sin, for example -- comes from watching Bob and Mary Ann Broberg crumple into tears as they recount their guilt. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 15, 2019
2/5 78% Captain Marvel (2019) To be blunt, it's insulting that Marvel felt simply making its first leading woman "one tough chick" would be enough to placate female fans. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 6, 2019
78% Green Book (2018) Both men are consciously exaggerated types. The fascinating contrast at the center of the story is to what degree and for what reason each of them chooses to be. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 28, 2019
79% Brexit (2019) While not as balanced as advertised, HBO's new movie, Brexit: The Uncivil War, offers fascinating insight into the political upheaval reverberating through the Western world. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 1, 2019
37% Glass (2019) Glass has no shortage of ideas to dissect and debate. If we have to give up some of the flash and action to have them, that's a trade I, for one, am more than ready to make. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 29, 2019
66% Vice (2018) Vice is a screed no more illuminating or informative than a Stephen Colbert monologue or an SNL skit. It is nasty, graceless, self-congratulatory stuff. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
63% Bird Box (2018) Along with Sandra Bullock's charisma as a leading lady, the movie boasts a riveting premise that feels like a cross between "Lost" and M. Night Shyamalan's better efforts. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
65% Aquaman (2018) Offers something that suddenly seems revolutionary -- a superhero movie for... comic book fans. Nearly every exaggerated, Day-Glo frame feels like it was pulled from a hand-drawn panel. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 27, 2018
79% Mary Poppins Returns (2018) Mary Poppins Returns admirably strives to stay true to the spirit of the jolly holiday we've been having with Mary for more than 50 years. Beautifully atmospheric with watercolor parks and thick, lamp-lit fogs, there's nary a hint of cynicism. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2018
87% Oddball and the Penguins (Oddball) (2015) Oddball offers some splendid real-world education on the amazing instincts God gives his creatures and the ingenious ways we're able to use them. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 26, 2018
37% Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (2018) It's not that the movie fails on all levels. Rowling and director David Yates, along with their likable cast, are too talented for that... But on one significant level it fails spectacularly: plot. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 16, 2018
59% The Grinch (2018) If you want songs about being happy, Pharrell is your guy. If you want to tell a story about a fellow as cuddly as a cactus and as charming as an eel, you need a little less sunshine and a lot more stink, stank, stunk. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 8, 2018
32% The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (2018) One lovely, far-too-short sequence featuring ballerina Misty Copeland offers a sad glimpse into what the movie could have been if Disney had been interested in making something beautiful that honored its source material. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 1, 2018
69% Babel (2006) On a practical level it's hard not to see that nearly every calamity in Babel could have been avoided had the characters exercised better judgment - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
52% The Fountain (2006) The film comes in at 95 minutes, yet it makes scant use of even that time, filling scene after scene with confusing (though often beautiful) kaleidoscopic visuals and not nearly enough plot. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
46% Bobby (2006) Estevez's hagiography feels simple-minded. That's not to say there weren't achievements to be honored in Robert F. Kennedy's career; Bobby just doesn't bother to do so. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
66% Apocalypto (2006) There is something different in Gibson's application of violence. The objections seem to lie not just in Gibson's realistic portrayal of cruelty but in the judgment he brings to it. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
4% Happily N'ever After (2006) Happily N'Ever After only proves that the idea of modernizing the Brothers Grimm for the sake of laughs may have finally jumped the shark. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
22% Arthur and the Invisibles (Arthur and the Minimoys) (2007) Unquestionably original, watching Arthur and the Invisibles frequently feels like sitting in on an elaborate video game. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
4% Because I Said So (2007) In the end, while the mixture looks sweet, it goes down decidedly sour. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
27% Ghost Rider (2007) This strange amalgamation of Texas Ranger lore, NASCAR bravado, and the-Devil-and-Daniel-Webster trickery keeps the campy fun revving just enough that you can't completely hate it. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
58% The Astronaut Farmer (2006) While The Astronaut Farmer may occasionally get its priorities mixed up, it is refreshing to spend some time with a movie that acknowledges the unique role that men play in families-a role that cannot be filled by any of today's trendy substitutes. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
14% Wild Hogs (2007) When the film isn't trading on an endless parade of gay jokes, it's focusing on an unfunny, unoriginal subplot in which the group must face off with a gang of biker bad guys. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
10% Pathfinder (2007) Without a relatable or sympathetic character in its lineup, Pathfinder is a blunt object designed to beat the audience over the head with gore until even the most sensitive viewer is left yawning at the ugliness. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
28% Next (2007) The concept behind it is fine, but the execution is terrible. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
71% 28 Weeks Later... (2007) Calling it an unadulterated exercise in nihilism might be an understatement. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
44% Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End (2007) A pirate's appeal is based in large part on his status as a renegade. But Verbinski gives us pirate codes, law books, and congresses-hardly the stuff of swashbuckling lore. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
90% Knocked Up (2007) The very fact that some clearly juvenile filmmakers have hit on the truth that a baby in the womb is as much a life as the one cradled in its mother's arms is encouraging. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
55% Mr. Brooks (2007) However hellish Brooks' acts might be, we admire how coolly he executes them. So rather than wish jail or worse on Mr. Brooks, the audience joins him in reveling in how neatly he disposes of his victims. Hollywood is, after all, so good at what it does. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
79% Surf's Up (2007) On the surface, this may not sound like a particularly original idea, but director Ash Brannon handles the "documentary" framing device so well, adults may forget they are watching a cartoon. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
50% Nancy Drew (2007) As played by Emma Roberts, Nancy boasts a plucky self-assuredness that inspires rather than annoys. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
14% I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry (2007) It's ironic that a film that claims to celebrate tolerance would paint all believers with that unfair brush. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 16, 2018
79% 1408 (2007) 1408 feels like a classic, well-acted haunted house tale. It may not go very deep with some of the bigger questions it asks, but it is interesting that it bothers to ask them. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2018
92% The Bourne Ultimatum (2007) Bourne's aim may be righteous, but it is also most definitely self-serving. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2018
76% Stardust (2007) While Stardust might not be a good choice for a family outing, it's not a bad choice for date night. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2018
89% 3:10 to Yuma (2007) With its great acting, great pacing, and crackerjack storyline, Yuma is not only fun, it is surprisingly moral. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2018
51% The Kingdom (2007) In spite of a couple of misstep -- like a tacked-on ending and a few too many one-liners --The Kingdom is a serious movie for serious times. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2018
No Score Yet Planet in Peril (2007) Not to say that there aren't legitimate debates about mankind's responsibility to the earth. But CNN has taken us a step backward in those debates, not forward. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2018
20% Fred Claus (2007) The biggest problem with Fred Claus isn't that it's not very good, it's that it pulls a bait-and-switch on parents expecting to see Hollywood's favorite bad boy in a film they can feel comfortable taking their kids to. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2018
42% The Golden Compass (2007) Weitzman hits all the book's plot points without ginning up any of its corresponding emotion. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2018
74% The Water Horse: Legend of the Deep (2007) Though it does occasionally stumble into predictable territory, The Water Horse succeeds because it relies on story as much as spectacle. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2018
37% Rambo (Rambo IV) (2008) Unfortunately... while Rocky Balboa deepened and expanded an iconic character, Rambo creates an even bloodier caricature of the one-man army many viewers remember. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2018
34% Vantage Point (2008) The most intrusive of these problems is the acting. - WORLD EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2018