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Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
4/4 100% Sansho the Bailiff (Sanshô dayû) (1954) At some point during the watching, "Sansho the Bailiff" stops being a fable or a narrative and starts being a lament, and by that time it is happening to us as few films do.‐
Read More | Posted Apr 16, 2018
3/4 74% Pretty Baby (1978) Louis Malle's Pretty Baby is a pleasant surprise: After all the controversy and scandal surrounding its production, it turns out to be a good-hearted, good-looking, quietly elegiac movie.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Feb 1, 2018
4/4 95% Johnny Guitar (1954) A cheap Western from Republic Pictures, yes. And also one of the boldest and most stylized films of its time, quirky, political, twisted.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2018
4/4 100% Fifth Horseman Is Fear (1965) "The Fifth Horseman is Fear" is such a nearly perfect film that it comes as a shock, in the last ten minutes, to discover how deeply involved you have become.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Jan 9, 2018
2/4 50% Bye Bye, Braverman (1968) Sidney Lumet's "Bye Bye Braverman" is a good movie gone wrong. ‐
Read More | Posted Jan 8, 2018
2.5/4 40% Sebastian (1969) What we are stuck with, then, is a movie that moves confidently in three directions, arriving nowhere with a splendid show of style.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 4, 2018
4/4 91% Homicide (1991) The movie crackles with energy and life, and with throwaway slang dialogue by Mamet, who takes realistic speech patterns and simplifies them into a kind of hammer-and-nail poetry. ‐
Read More | Posted Dec 13, 2017
2.5/3 No Score Yet Inside/Out (1997) Dialogue is heard only in snatches. There are no word-driven relationships. Visuals make the point.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2017
2.5/4 No Score Yet Inside Out (1998) Seeing the movie is like paying dues to [Tregenza's] vision. We are witnesses that he accomplished what he set out to do. He does it in his own time and space.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 2, 2017
2.5/4 80% The Driver (1978) I was thrilled. And I couldn't wait to leave.‐
Read More | Posted Aug 8, 2017
2/4 62% A Bridge Too Far (1977) Such an exercise in wretched excess, such a mindless series of routine scenes, such a boringly violent indulgence in blood and guts and moans.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 7, 2017
91% You Don't Know Jack (2010) Pacino and Levinson seem to have made a deliberate decision to keep Jack's rough edges. There is no attempt to make him heroic; we have to come to any such decision on our own. ‐
Read More | Posted Jun 7, 2017
4/4 No Score Yet Hitori musuko (The Only Son) (1936) Why was I thinking about flower arrangement while watching "The Only Son" the first sound film made by the Japanese master Ozu? It must have involved the meticulous and loving care he used with his familiar visual elements.‐
Read More | Posted Feb 7, 2017
3.5/4 67% Ha-Sodot (The Secrets) (2007) In some ways, it is a traditional narrative. But it is more. It is gently and powerfully acted.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Jan 19, 2017
3/4 86% Sign o' the Times (1987) [The film] was directed by Prince, and he does a good, sound job without finding an answer to the problem of all directors of rock concert films: After you have exhausted the basic repertory of obvious shots and audience reactions, what do you do then?‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2016
1.5/4 20% A Place for Lovers (1968) Could Vittorio de Sica possibly have directed it? De Sica, who made The Bicycle Thief? Even a director who had made no movies would have a hard time making one as bad as this.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Apr 25, 2016
3.5/4 50% Privilege (1967) This is a bitter, uncompromising movie, and although it isn't quite successful it is fascinating and important.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Apr 12, 2016
4/4 100% Harakiri (1962) It would be wrong for me to reveal the details of the story Tsugumo tells. What I can say is that it is heartbreaking.‐
Read More | Posted Mar 18, 2016
4/4 87% Triumph des Willens (Triumph Of The Will) (1935) That Triumph of the Will is a great propaganda film, there is no doubt, and various surveys have named it so. But I doubt that anyone not already a Nazi could be swayed by it.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Feb 17, 2016
3/4 88% F for Fake (1974) F For Fake is minor Welles, the master idly tuning his instrument while the concert seems never to start again. But it's engaging and fun, and it's astonishing how easily Welles spins a movie out of next to nothing.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Oct 11, 2015
1/4 30% Two Minute Warning (1976) I thought perhaps the movie would at least include a little pop sociology to soften its blood-letting. Not a chance. It's a cheerfully unashamed exploitation of two of our great national preoccupations, pro football and guns.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Sep 27, 2015
3/4 40% I, the Jury (1982) I, the Jury is a violent private eye thriller, with a certain redeeming sense of style.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Aug 17, 2015
2/4 32% Grease 2 (1982) This movie just recycles Grease, without the stars, without the energy, without the freshness and without the grease.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Aug 15, 2015
3.5/4 88% The Muppet Movie (1979) Jolson sang, Barrymore spoke, Garbo laughed, and now Kermit the Frog rides a bicycle... If you can figure out how they were able to show Kermit pedaling across the screen, then you are less a romantic than I am: I prefer to believe he did it himself.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Jun 1, 2015
2.5/4 No Score Yet On the Right Track (1981) What could have been a bright little comedy is so jampacked with supporting players, subplots, and distractions that it seems much longer than it is, and even Coleman's fortitude doesn't get us through. ‐
Read More | Posted Apr 8, 2015
4/4 22% Lo Straniero (The Stranger) (1967) Visconti, like Camus, realizes that the meaning of The Stranger is not to be found in the plot but in the mood. The mood is ennui, the dominant emotion of a man who hardly cares enough to tell his own story.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Apr 7, 2015
2.5/4 53% Poor Cow (1967) In the end, the few good moments (as when the girl tends bar, cares for her child and shares confidences with Terence Stamp) are lost in the mess of everything else.‐
Read More | Posted Mar 14, 2015
2/4 29% Gabriela (1983) There is no real chemistry between the bar owner and his wonderful lover, [so] even the most dedicated filmgoer is eventually reduced to waiting for what we used to call the good parts.‐
Read More | Posted Mar 13, 2015
3.5/4 86% Accident (1967) The film is put together as carefully as a Hitchcock.‐
Read More | Posted Mar 12, 2015
0/4 25% The Green Berets (1968) "The Green Berets" simply will not do as a film about the war in Vietnam. It is offensive not only to those who oppose American policy but even to those who support it.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Nov 17, 2014
4/4 84% El Norte (1984) From the very first moments of El Norte, we know that we are in the hands of a great movie.‐
Read More | Posted Sep 19, 2014
4/4 85% Senso (1954) Senso is lush, broadly emotional and beautifully photographed.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Aug 29, 2014
1/4 43% The Last Movie (1971) Dennis Hopper's The Last Movie is a wasteland of cinematic wreckage.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Aug 26, 2014
4/4 75% Oh! What A Lovely War (1969) It is an elaborately staged tableau, a dazzling use of the camera to achieve essentially theatrical effects. And judged on that basis, Richard Attenborough has given us a breathtaking evening.‐
Read More | Posted Aug 25, 2014
2.5/4 50% Cruising (1980) What we're left with is a movie without the courage to declare itself.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Jun 9, 2014
2/4 65% Wild in the Streets (1968) For this audience, Wild in the Streets needs no serious political comment and no real understanding of how pop music and the mass media work together. It's a silly film, but it does communicate in the simplest, most direct terms.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Jun 4, 2014
3/4 90% Cropsey (2010) Cropsey is a creepy documentary with all the elements of a horror film about a demented serial killer, and an extra ingredient: This one is real.‐
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2014
3/4 57% The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds (1972) Joanne Woodward's performance is not like anything she's ever done before.‐
Read More | Posted Jan 14, 2014
4/4 92% Princess Mononoke (Mononoke-hime) (1999) Hayao Miyazaki is a great animator, and his Princess Mononoke is a great film.‐
Read More | Posted Nov 27, 2013
0/4 31% Mandingo (1975) Mandingo is racist trash, obscene in its manipulation of human beings and feelings, and excruciating to sit through.‐
Read More | Posted Oct 14, 2013
4/4 92% The Spectacular Now (2013) Here is a lovely film about two high school seniors who look, speak and feel like real 18-year-old middle-American human beings. Do you have any idea how rare that is?‐
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2013
3.5/4 57% The Scenic Route (1978) Mark Rappaport makes movies that look, sound and feel like nobody else's movies. He is an original.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Jul 26, 2013
4/4 100% Såsom i en Spegel (Through A Glass Darkly) (1961) You can freeze almost any frame of this film and be looking at a striking still photograph.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 23, 2013
2/4 87% Computer Chess (2013) As an achievement, "Computer Chess" is laudable. As a film, it's missable.‐
Read More | Posted Jul 18, 2013
89% An Unmarried Woman (1978) There are scenes in An Unmarried Woman so well written and acted that our laughter is unsettling, the laughter of exact recognition. ‐ Film Comment Magazine
Read More | Posted Jun 28, 2013
2/4 11% Chill Factor (1999) Nobody questions this logic, but then there are a lot of logical gaps in this movie.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted Jun 11, 2013
0.5/4 3% Battlefield Earth (2000) Battlefield Earth is like taking a bus trip with someone who has needed a bath for a long time. It's not merely bad; it's unpleasant in a hostile way.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted May 28, 2013
4/4 67% The Fox (1967) A quiet, powerful masterpiece.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted May 8, 2013
2/4 29% Hurry Sundown (1967) Otto Preminger's Hurry Sundown is a frustrating case, not good but not particularly bad, with a smokescreen of controversy surrounding it and obscuring its real faults.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted May 8, 2013
3/4 22% Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon (1970) It succeeds, among other things, in making human entertainment out of a rather unlikely story.‐ Chicago Sun-Times
Read More | Posted May 8, 2013