Peter Hartlaub Movie Reviews & Previews - Rotten Tomatoes

Peter Hartlaub

Peter Hartlaub
Peter Hartlaub's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Houston Chronicle, San Francisco Chronicle, Hearst Newspapers

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
2/4 16% Midnight Sun (2018) With modest production values throughout, "Midnight Sun" feels like four or five episodes of a pretty good drama on the WB network in 1997. In other words, something you used to get for free.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Mar 23, 2018
1/4 37% The Strangers: Prey At Night (2018) The actions of the family in Prey at Night rarely acknowledge logic, and often seem to be deliberately mocking common sense.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2018
3/4 82% Early Man (2018) There's a sense of innocence and ingenuity and a central wholesomeness that remains throughout the film. "Early Man" is escapist fun.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Feb 14, 2018
3/4 62% Peter Rabbit (2018) When the last stick of dynamite goes off, and the last human is electrocuted, it's hard not to walk away thinking "that movie was so much better than I expected."‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Feb 7, 2018
1/4 14% Winchester (2018) Even the scares, too infrequent for this type of film, have a consistent misdirection that becomes tired and predictable. The ending tries to be thoughtful, but there's not enough investment in these characters to care.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Feb 2, 2018
3/4 55% Bilal: A New Breed of Hero (2018) "Bilal: A Brand New Breed of Hero" took forever to get here, and probably will be missed by the masses. It deserved a better fate.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jan 31, 2018
1/4 21% Forever My Girl (2018) It all feels a little bit off, as if every third scene was cut out randomly, and every camera angle came down to a fourth choice.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jan 19, 2018
1/4 31% Pitch Perfect 3 (2017) These are presumably independent young adults - most of the lead actresses are in their 30s now - continuing to wrestle with 18-year-old problems. And when they finally take the stage, it's hard to care.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2017
4/4 97% Coco (2017) What a joy to watch "Coco," filmmaking that actively sandbags the viewer, with the emotions of a starving artist and the mind of a pool hustler.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2017
1/4 19% Daddy's Home 2 (2017) By any standard, every person in the world of Daddy's Home 2 would be scarred for life by the events in the film. The real happy ending is that no one in the audience has to go home with these people.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2017
2/4 29% A Bad Moms Christmas (2017) "A Bad Moms Christmas" is predictable and ridiculous and lame, but here we are, cracking up at the moms twerking with a department store Santa Claus again.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Nov 1, 2017
2/4 77% Thank You for Your Service (2017) As a piece of cinema, "Thank You" is flawed, with a structure and pacing that dull the viewing experience, even as the message drives through. It's a great discussion starter, but not a great finished product.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Oct 26, 2017
3/4 87% Only the Brave (2017) Only the Brave weaves together wholesome plot threads that will please mainstream crowds. But it is also boldly staged, with an inventive and informative approach to action filmmaking.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Oct 18, 2017
3/4 92% Stronger (2017) "Stronger" always feels right in the moment, solidified by an outstanding central performance by Gyllenhaal, and some wonderful ensemble work, especially the actors just below the top billing.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Sep 27, 2017
2/4 55% The Lego Ninjago Movie (2017) "Lego Ninjago" has three directors, with eight credited writers. An honest effort is still being made, but the committee approach is felt on screen.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Sep 21, 2017
4/4 92% The Force (2017) Nicks doesn't deal in heroes and villains - the police and the community activists all get nuanced portrayals. But when mistakes are made, no one gets off the hook either.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Sep 14, 2017
4/4 85% It (2017) Muschietti understands the Spielberg-ian rule, that creating a recognizable and convincing backdrop makes the supernatural thing in the foreground feel tangible and believable.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Sep 7, 2017
3/4 100% Dolores (2017) Bratt and his collaborators clearly admire their subject, while recognizing that the struggles and some possible contradictions don't make her a weaker leader.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Sep 6, 2017
3/4 78% Crown Heights (2017) "Crown Heights" has some narrative shortcomings. But the filmmakers respect the subject matter too much to ever take the easy way out.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Aug 30, 2017
2/4 37% Leap! (2017) Even the moments of grace are eventually stained by the bodily functions humor and flurry of pratfalls that are always around the corner.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
3/4 94% Escapes (2017) A half-dozen true Hollywood stories are presented in "Escapes," all offered in a matter-of-fact style that seems detached from typical celebrity brand-building and false humility.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Aug 16, 2017
3/4 49% Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017) Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is a movie for science fiction fans who wish every minute of Star Wars was the cantina scene.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jul 19, 2017
2/4 16% Wish Upon (2017) It's a summer movie that delivers a lowest-common-denominator good time, and mostly succeeds.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jul 13, 2017
3/4 90% The Last Dalai Lama? (2017) The more an audience member sees the beauty left in the Buddhist leader's wake, the more it become clear that his influence has the power to continue generations beyond his passing.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jul 6, 2017
3/4 90% Raising Bertie (2017) Byrne provides no voice-over and very few titles, trusting the viewer to make their own political and social interpretations.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jun 21, 2017
2/4 44% Rough Night (2017) Whenever the story goes off the rails, there's always someone funny there to will it back into a humorous place.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jun 15, 2017
3/4 93% Abacus: Small Enough to Jail (2017) The lack of action is made up for by the gumption of the accused banking family, whose respect for each other is apparent even as they bicker and interrupt each other over trial strategy, press releases and the catered lunch.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2017
1/4 86% Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (Captain Underpants) (2017) In the end, it's impossible to ignore the fact that this feature is devoid of even the simplest positive morals or takeaways. And it's not quite funny or wry enough to forgive its weaknesses.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jun 2, 2017
2/4 20% Diary Of A Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul (2017) In the end ... it's all mostly harmless fun.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted May 18, 2017
3/4 80% Chuck (2017) Schreiber continues to sell each moment ... through the entire movie. The Chuck Wepner story is a compelling one - and the performances ensure its place as a sports movie contender.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted May 10, 2017
3/4 66% The Wall (2017) A mostly satisfying genre soufflé, guided by a skilled director who seems to be all in on this minimalist filmmaking opportunity.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted May 10, 2017
3/4 100% The Happiest Day in the Life of Olli Mäki (Hymyilevä mies) (2017) This is a very small film, with a big heart.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted May 10, 2017
2/4 74% Chasing Trane: The John Coltrane Documentary (2017) Washington is a wonderful voice, but his readings of Coltrane's words don't match seeing the artist in motion. The constant stream of still photos, with a recognizable actor's voice, has a distancing effect.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Apr 26, 2017
3/4 90% Their Finest (2017) "Their Finest" is a charming and thoughtful movie, about people making a charming and thoughtful movie.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Apr 20, 2017
3/4 49% Going in Style (2017) I didn't double over with laughter watching "Going in Style," or laugh out loud that much at all. But when getting up to leave, I realized my face physically hurt from grinning throughout the movie.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Apr 6, 2017
1/4 38% Smurfs: The Lost Village (2017) At best, it's an adequate cinematic babysitter. That said, few parents will have any residual anger for spending the money.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2017
2/4 52% The Boss Baby (2017) There are distracting side plots - and side plots to the side plots - that sabotage much of what's enjoyable about the movie. In infant care terms, this is a colicky film.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2017
1/4 68% Life (2017) "Life" is like watching a "Rocky" movie, if Mr. T just kept beating Sylvester Stallone up a little more with each fight.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Mar 23, 2017
3/4 91% Raw (2017) You probably won't want to see "Raw" again anytime soon, but Ducournau's next cinematic smorgasbord can't come soon enough.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Mar 16, 2017
4/4 93% Logan (2017) The film celebrates the medium by taking itself seriously, with an added hint of apology for the genre's earlier sins. Best of all, there's an element of risk.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Mar 2, 2017
1/4 19% The Shack (2017) "The Shack" is unshakable in its religious message, and that's admirable in a cynical world. But viewed objectively as cinema, it's just not a very good film.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Mar 2, 2017
2/4 47% Rock Dog (2017) Too lackluster to be praised highly, yet too benign to be excoriated, "Rock Dog" is the perfect family film for a rainy day with no other options.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Feb 23, 2017
1/4 41% A Cure For Wellness (2017) There's a decent "Crimson Peak"-style gothic thriller in here somewhere, with a better lead character and about 50 minutes shaved out of the middle.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Feb 15, 2017
3/4 90% The Lego Batman Movie (2017) The Lego Batman Movie is less awesome than its predecessor, but it's a clever, well-paced, self-aware and completely satisfying kind of less awesome.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Feb 7, 2017
1/4 33% A Dog's Purpose (2017) If you have the kind of kid who cries hard when Old Yeller dies, you're sending him into a "The Wild Bunch"-style ambush.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jan 26, 2017
3/4 76% Split (2017) "Split" is always watchable, and occasionally great. And that's probably more than even the most forgiving former Shyamalan fan ever thought they'd see again.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jan 18, 2017
3/4 86% A Monster Calls (2017) Bayona remains a director whose work should be anticipated, and "A Monster Calls" is a solid fantasy drama.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Jan 5, 2017
2/4 72% Sing (2016) The rousing and touching moments line up in orderly fashion, like planes on the runway during the holiday rush.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2016
2/4 41% Office Christmas Party (2016) It benefits from an excellent cast, who seem to be all in. And whenever there's a stretch of extended mediocrity, it's almost always saved by an unexpected moment of politically incorrect inspiration.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2016
3/4 96% Moana (2016) Walt Disney Animation Studios, which arguably hasn't had a dud since "Meet the Robinsons" in 2007, continues its roll.‐ San Francisco Chronicle
Read More | Posted Nov 22, 2016