Peter Howell

Peter Howell
Tomatometer-approved critic

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
3/4 80% Late Night (2019) Thompson and Kaling don't even need to be acting here. Like all women, they've long had to navigate real-world misogyny. But they also know how to find the humour in it. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 13, 2019
3/4 53% The Dead Don't Die (2019) A movie where character defines plot, not the other way around - although this is much more of a genre exercise than Jarmusch has previously essayed. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 13, 2019
2.5/4 35% Shaft (2019) We can dig what Barbershop's Tim Story is up to with his 2019 version of Shaft, if only for the excellent chemistry between Roundtree, Jackson and new hire Jessie T. Usher... - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 13, 2019
1.5/4 24% Men in Black International (2019) Lightning fails to strike twice in Men in Black: International, let alone for a fourth time. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 13, 2019
2.5/4 57% The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) As momentarily enticing and as intellectually deficient as a box of Timbits. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
1.5/4 23% Dark Phoenix (2019) Seeking to tie up loose ends and correct past errors, Dark Phoenix instead comes across as more of a collection of forgettable outtakes, like Pink Floyd's The Endless River LP. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
3.5/4 89% The Souvenir (2019) Swinton Byrne and Burke make for one of the year's most intriguing screen couples, although this is a romance based on anxiety, narcissism and opportunism rather than anything resembling genuine affection. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
3/4 97% Echo In the Canyon (2019) There are no huge revelations, but there are funny stories. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 6, 2019
98% The Lighthouse (2019) A psychological nightmare that gnaws at the brain long after the disturbing final image assaults the retina. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 30, 2019
3.5/4 100% nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up (2019) [A] powerful work of activist cinema. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 30, 2019
1/4 40% Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) The film is so murky, it looks as though it was put through a dark blue Instagram filter. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 30, 2019
3/4 89% Rocketman (2019) This is rock storytelling as entertainment, not a social chronicle like Woodstock or Gimme Shelter. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 30, 2019
92% Once Upon a Time In Hollywood (2019) Tarantino is in absolutely no hurry to tell his story. He luxuriates in the recreation of a world that clearly fascinates him. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 28, 2019
3.5/4 97% Booksmart (2019) It's an early contender for the best comedy of the summer. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 23, 2019
2/4 51% Tolkien (2019) Tolkien is to filmmaking what spoon-feeding is to infants. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 9, 2019
2/4 15% The Hustle (2019) The third time for this tale is not the charm. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 9, 2019
3/4 97% Hail Satan? (2019) These outspoken occultists consider themselves not so much part of a religion as a politically active agency espousing individualism, self-expression and liberty. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 2, 2019
1.5/4 81% Long Shot (2019) It's more than a little disturbing that a woman as smart and capable as Field would deem it necessary to hire an arrogant jerk like Flarsky to "punch up" her speeches. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted May 2, 2019
3/4 100% Knock Down the House (2019) The definitive AOC doc awaits, but Knock Down the House provides a bracing first draft. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 30, 2019
3/4 93% Diane (2019) Diane is a sublime puzzle of a movie, resolving itself without completely yielding its secrets. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2019
3.5/4 94% Avengers: Endgame (2019) Mathematicians say infinity has no end. Avengers: Endgame thrillingly and movingly proves them wrong. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 24, 2019
0.5/4 30% The Curse of La Llorona (2019) This is what happens when franchise greed is put ahead of storytelling basics. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 18, 2019
3.5/4 83% High Life (2019) The vastness of space is such a natural fit for the free-floating narratives of Claire Denis, it's a wonder she hasn't embraced sci-fi before now. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 18, 2019
3/4 93% Rafiki (2019) Rafiki hardly breaks new narrative ground, but Kahiu's fluid direction and wholly empathetic performances by Mugatsia and Munyiva make the movie special. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 18, 2019
2.5/4 43% Girls of the Sun (Les filles du soleil) (2019) It doesn't stint on war-movie tropes and cliché-filled speeches, sometimes to its detriment. It fares better in recognizing the humanity and determination of the female soldiers. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2019
2/4 17% Hellboy (2019) It's in tune with the current public taste for over-the-top horror. But it seems pointless regardless, as does the CGI overkill that turns every battle into a bloodbath leaving mutilated and decapitated bodies. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2019
3/4 84% Her Smell (2019) A fame-to-flameout movie that leaves scorch marks on the brain. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2019
2/4 46% Little (2019) If only Jordan could have directed some of her drill-sergeant fury toward the writers and makers of Little, it might have been a better movie. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2019
3.5/4 99% Amazing Grace (2019) The film still isn't technically perfect - the editing is rough, technical snafus sometimes slow the flow and the camera crew is all too visible - but the sound and emotion power over any ragged spots. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2019
2.5/4 89% Missing Link (2019) The animation is almost too good for a story this slender - the water imagery is especially impressive. But it helps make this pleasant diversion all the more enjoyable, for bigfeet and smallfeet alike. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2019
2.5/4 63% The Man Who Killed Don Quixote (2019) Visually heroic, narratively tilting at windmills, Terry Gilliam's 25-year obsession with Miguel de Cervantes' eccentric knight-errant embraces illusion with such devotion I ended up liking The Man Who Killed Don Quixote more than fighting it. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 4, 2019
1/4 57% Pet Sematary (2019) Pet Sematary still isn't very scary, but it's gotten a lot more stupid. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 4, 2019
3/4 90% Shazam! (2019) Shazam! is irreverent in a sweet way, not a cynical way like Deadpool. There's more reason to fear a "suitcase wedgie" (don't ask) than the threatened planetary destruction (yawn). - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 4, 2019
3/4 97% Carmine Street Guitars (2019) Mann is the hipster fly on the wall, just happy to be there and drink it all in - and to share the joy of the experience with us. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 4, 2019
2/4 76% Hotel Mumbai (2019) Hotel Mumbai is part survival thriller, part docudrama - and all of a confusion. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
2.5/4 47% Dumbo (2019) The film's a joy to behold, if not to ponder. Burton and his crew find magic in their paintbox that's missing in the story. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
1/4 55% The Beach Bum (2019) The Beach Bum might have worked as a fish-out-of-water comedy or redemptive story of a loser who finally learns how to win. Neither of these genre staples would appeal to a bête noire like Korine, the filmmaking equivalent of a bull in a china shop. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
2.5/4 33% Through Black Spruce (2018) The movie stands on its own merits, as a simmering whodunit where plot basics are secondary to personalities, thanks to a superb cast. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
2.5/4 100% Falls Around Her (2018) An unexpected homecoming becomes a mystery story in Falls Around Her, a movie marking the first lead film role for Tantoo Cardinal in her 48-year career. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
3.5/4 92% Firecrackers (2018) One of the best new Canadian films in a long while... - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 28, 2019
2.5/4 57% The Highwaymen (2019) Gets the job done in as ruthless a fashion as its subjects. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 21, 2019
3.5/4 94% Us (2019) The film relies on the brilliant-times-two acting of Nyong'o, who slips between protective mom and devilish double with a facility that keeps everybody on edge, both on and off the screen. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 21, 2019
3/4 98% Ash Is Purest White (2019) The narrative occasionally wavers but not Zhao's performance, her best yet. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 21, 2019
2/4 27% The Aftermath (2019) From the title on down, most of the drama in The Aftermath seems to have already happened off-screen. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 21, 2019
3/4 97% Woman at War (Kona fer í stríð) (2019) The droll absurdity of Nordic cinema acquires an eco-terrorism edge in Woman at War, a movie filled with dualities and one singular performance. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 14, 2019
3/4 98% 3 Faces (2019) Metaphors speak louder than words in this stealthy new drama by state-harassed Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 7, 2019
2.5/4 81% Ruben Brandt, Collector (2019) This is Krstic's first feature and it's obvious that he has visual flair to spare. If he can only find a story worthy of it, he'd have a real work of film art. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 28, 2019
4/4 98% Apollo 11 (2019) It brings home, with IMAX size and thunder, the magnitude of the mission's achievement. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 28, 2019
3/4 91% How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) What the movie lacks in narrative flow, it makes up for in action scenes and character appeal. - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 21, 2019
3/4 77% Never Look Away (2019) There is horror and beauty in this film, and sometimes both at the same time... - Toronto Star EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 21, 2019