Mike Vanderbilt

Mike Vanderbilt
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
Mike Vanderbilt is a writer, bartender, and Malort enthusiast based in Chicago. He has appeared in the Chicago Reader, the A.V. Club, Fandor, and Fangoria. He is currently the assistant editor at Daily Grindhouse, a website dedicated to genre film essays and criticism.

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
C- 86% Shakespeare's Shitstorm (2020) The left and the right have deep issues within each movement that deserve to get taken to task, but Shitstorm opts to go for low hanging fruit, attacking it with obvious, sophomoric humor. - Consequence of Sound EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 2, 2020
C+ 37% Spenser Confidential (2020) While Spenser Confidential lacks originality, it saunters by on well-meaning charm, anchored by Peter Berg's direction and a cast that's here for a good time. - Consequence of Sound EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 6, 2020
B 77% Bad Boys for Life (2020) Bad Boys for Life thrives from stellar action filmmaking and could be an affecting closer to an action film trilogy. - Consequence of Sound EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 15, 2020
51% Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) ...sloppy and overstuffed, but when it focuses on smaller moments between the characters, SKYWALKER comes out on top, overall providing a thrilling if not a completely satisfying conclusion... - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2019
B 83% Daniel Isn't Real (2019) Daniel Isn't Real is exploitation that eschews the trashier elements of the genre. As a director, Mortimer frames a great shot and pulls gangbusters performances out of Robbins and Schwarzenegger. It's minded, but also massively entertaining genre cinema. - Consequence of Sound EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 2, 2019
B+ 81% VFW (2020) An action-packed, gory siege picture, VFW is the USA Up All Night second feature you always hoped Rhonda Shear would serve up on Friday or Gilbert Gottfried on Saturday. - Consequence of Sound EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 2, 2019
No Score Yet Phantom of Winnipeg (2019) ...elevates itself above other fan docs in that it's not simply about the love of an oddball slice of pop culture, but the story of the town--arguably the ONLY town-where this was destined to happen. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2019
85% Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (2019) ...as outrageous, hyper-violent, silly, funny, terrifying, and cathartic as an audience could ever want from a Tarantino picture. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 24, 2019
No Score Yet Without Warning (It Came Without Warning) (Alien Encounters) (1980) ...hearing Jack Palance scream "ALIEN!" during the final confrontation worth the being make this movie worth a look. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
78% The Standoff at Sparrow Creek (2019) ...a truly impressive feature debut for writer/director, Henry Dunham.There is a sense of authenticity that these characters. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
6% The Amityville Murders (2019) There are some groovy '70s costumes on display and features cool garage rock... THE AMITYVILLE MURDERS winds up another lackluster entry in the franchise. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
No Score Yet Fighting the Sky (2018) Director Conrad Faraj brings a light touch to FIGHTING THE SKY that elevates it from its low-budget, sci-fi brethren. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
88% Upgrade (2018) ...a wickedly funny, unassumingly smart, and ultra gory slice of cyberpunk. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
97% Won't You Be My Neighbor? (2018) ...a powerful, emotional portrait of the most genuine man to ever grace this Earth. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
100% Top Knot Detective (2016) . The filmmakers are so slick, playing the concept straight as an arrow, that the audience may even believe it to be real if only for a moment. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
75% Let the Corpses Tan (Laissez bronzer les cadavres!) (2018) A gangbusters soundtrack & healthy leather fetish propel this greasy, grimy neo-spaghetti western. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
72% Summer of '84 (2018) ...meanders for most of its run time and by the time the film goes somewhere interesting, it's already too late - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
79% Buffalo Boys (2019) ...a super fun and romantic action tale. Gleefully over the top with ultra cool tough guy dialogue and romance, it's undeniably entertaining... - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
91% The Night Comes For Us (2018) ...an assault on the senses...NIGHT essentially never bores us and always gets to the chorus. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
87% It Comes At Night (2017) The film never offers easy answers; perhaps we're only seeking a few moments of pleasure, because nobody gets out alive. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
92% Baby Driver (2017) ...a half-baked, juvenile script doesn't bring any pathos to the flashy film...it's ultimately a hollow experience. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
69% Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) Ron Howard outdid himself on this one, recapturing that intangible ≤i≥STAR WARS≤i≥ spirit with a film that's beautifully grimy and an absolute blast from start to finish - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
90% Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) THE LAST JEDI sits somewhere in the middle as a very good entry in the STAR WARS series. Johnson takes some risks with the story-maybe not enough of them to truly make THE LAST JEDI a classic - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2019
87% Bliss (2019) A sleazy, rock 'n' roll, vampire fable, BLISS may find Begos at is darkest and introspective, but there is a sick sense of humor and a sense of rock 'n' roll fun that drives this tale of addiction, ambition and vampirism. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2019
C- 33% Shaft (2019) Shaft is a missed opportunity, particularly at the chance to comment on how being a "complicated man" has evolved since 1971, and how the world has never simply been black and white. - Consequence of Sound EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 14, 2019
91% Show Me the Picture: The Story of Jim Marshall (2019) ...a wild look at one of the unsung heroes of rock 'n' roll: they played it, and he memorialized it. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 8, 2019
99% Amazing Grace (2019) Play this one loud. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 8, 2019
78% Tales from the Hood 2 (2018) ...fun, funny, thought provoking, and at times wonderfully weird. Tales From The Hood 2</I is indeed, the shit. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 8, 2019
77% Nightmare Cinema (2019) ...runs on energy. From the word go, it's high-octane entertainment, wonderfully weird at times, ultra-gory, and really, just a lot of fun. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 8, 2019
62% Satanic Panic (2019) ...it wants to be a sleepover movie for adolescent girls and boys...all the parts may be there, but Satanic Panic has no soul. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2019
54% The Dead Don't Die (2019) The Dead Don't Die is a genre film. It's a zombie film. But above all it is a Jim Jarmusch film..dryly humorous dialogue with laidback panache. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2019
70% Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich (2018) ...mean spirited, uncomfortable, and in poor taste..The Littlest Reich is not a toy box audiences-and especially longtime Puppet Master fans-are going to want to play in. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted May 16, 2019
64% St. Agatha (2019) ...a perverse, creepy, and slickly shot slice of modern day nunsploitation. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted May 16, 2019
79% Halloween (2018) ...whiffs on the promise of the character of Laurie Strode that Jamie Lee Curtis has embodied for forty years. Perhaps it's a testament to the power of the original film that no sequel or reboot will ever be as effective as the night he came home. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted May 16, 2019
28% The Curse of La Llorona (2019) ...never leans too hard into weighty terror, visceral scares, or into comedy bordering on slapstick but comfortably hangs out in the middle of the road. - Daily Grindhouse EDIT
Read More | Posted May 16, 2019