Wenlei Ma

Wenlei Ma
Tomatometer-approved critic

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
3.5/5 82% Nobody (2021) Nobody is as visceral and smashing as it ludicrous and bonkers, and it is every bit the flashy and vigorously violent movie you'd expect to match its enormously high body count. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2021
3.5/5 87% The Courier (2020) A skilled, suspenseful and propulsive historical drama. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2021
4.5/5 98% The Father (2021) There is no weak link in The Father. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2021
1.5/5 26% Voyagers (2021) The characters have so little development, they don't even reach archetypes level. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2021
1.5/5 23% Thunder Force (2021) Thunder Force always goes for the cheap laugh, except without the actual laughing. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 11, 2021
2.5/5 61% Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway (2021) Even though the production values are impressive, in casting off the spirit of Beatrix Potter's stories, Peter Rabbit 2 is ultimately a hollow story let down by its writing. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2021
3.5/5 74% The Mauritanian (2021) The Mauritanian might easily have been a decent albeit forgettable political biopic, but Tahar Rahim's dignified performance makes it a far more enduring and memorable film. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2021
3/5 75% Godzilla vs. Kong (2021) All your senses will be so overwhelmed by the visceral action and the forceful, metallic synth score that trying to make sense of the idiotic story is about 74th down your priority list. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 25, 2021
3/5 100% Girls Can't Surf (2020) If you consider Girls Can't Surf as an oral history from the women on tour, then it's much easier going because what it's not is a deep dive into a sport that devalued their contributions and the culture that fuelled it. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 19, 2021
4/5 96% Judas and the Black Messiah (2021) Impressive, explosive and gut-wrenching. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 19, 2021
2/5 37% Cherry (2021) Not even the emotional depth or compassion Tom Holland imbues his unnamed character can save Cherry. Only a ruthless editor that would've been willing to cut 60 minutes out of it could have. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 19, 2021
3/5 47% Yes Day (2021) What you think it's going to be is exactly what you're going to get. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 19, 2021
2.5/5 62% Crisis (2021) For all of its good intentions, the generic Crisis isn't showing us anything new. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 19, 2021
3.5/5 94% Raya and the Last Dragon (2021) With its visual majesty, rollicking pace and winning voice performances from Kelly Marie Tran and Awkwafina, Raya and the Last Dragon is another feather in Disney's cap. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2021
2.5/5 22% Chaos Walking (2021) It could've been worse. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2021
3.5/5 92% Another Round (Druk) (2020) Thomas Vinterberg is incredibly astute when it comes to how humans behave in extraordinary circumstances. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2021
5/5 98% Minari (2020) Weeks, maybe even months later, you'll still be thinking about it. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2021
3/5 80% I Care a Lot (2021) Rosamund Pike is almost too effective, her delicious villainy too irresistible to completely loathe. From her sharp canary yellow suit to her fearless resolve, Marla may be problematic, but she is fabulous. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2021
3/5 75% The Rental (2020) Delivering solid thrills and an ugly portrait of disintegrating relationships, The Rental is a clever meld of drama and horror. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2021
4/5 92% The White Tiger (2020) Any hope or salvation The White Tiger offers is laced with a drop of arsenic, and there are certainly no Bollywood dance numbers to lift your spirits. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2021
4/5 79% High Ground (2021) Australian storytelling that packs a punch and pushes you to think deeply about the history of this country, High Ground captures the raw beauty of Arnhem Land as it does the brutality of colonialism. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2021
3/5 88% The Dig (2021) The elegance in The Dig lies in what it says about the continuity of life rather than the finality of death. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 27, 2021
4/5 98% One Night in Miami (2020) There's a Shakespearean quality to One Night in Miami, wrestling with grand ideas about the complexities of the human experiences through these flawed but noble characters. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 17, 2021
3/5 93% Sylvie's Love (2020) Sylvie's Love ticks many of the boxes with assurance and style, there's much to recommend it if you like a little flutter of the heart. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 22, 2020
4.5/5 95% Soul (2020) There's a lot of poignancy to Soul without being bogged down in sentimentality. It's a cure for any existential malaise 2020 may have burdened on us, a celebration of the mundane and the grand, all-consuming passions. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 22, 2020
3.5/5 50% The Midnight Sky (2020) It's a carefully balanced movie that gives as much time to human connections, loss, regrets and hope in the small moments as it does to what we reveal of ourselves when survival is at stake. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2020
5/5 94% Nomadland (2021) Chloe Zhao's thoughtful balance of majesty and intimacy makes Nomadland one of the most accomplished films of the year, an emotional tour de force that moves you but never imposes or manipulates. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2020
3.5/5 98% Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (2020) Chadwick Boseman gives a powerful performance that reverberates with pride, pain and thwarted ambition. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 19, 2020
3.5/5 59% Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) This is a movie that absolutely crackles on a big screen, the large canvas playing deserving host to the scale of Wonder Woman 1984's ambitious action sequences, pop art colour palette and scene-stealing villains. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 15, 2020
2.5/5 55% The Prom (2020) The Prom takes giant leaps (literally and metaphorically) in its story progression without earning it. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 12, 2020
4.5/5 95% Palm Springs (2020) All charm, heart and hilarity, Palm Springs is one of the year's best films. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2020
1.5/5 26% Hillbilly Elegy (2020) Adams and Close deserved better than this relentlessly gloomy, often trite, movie. We all did. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2020
4/5 83% Happiest Season (2020) There's nothing guilty about this pleasure. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2020
5/5 83% Mank (2020) More than a magnificent technical achievement, Mank is hypnotically entertaining. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2020
3.5/5 70% Tenet (2020) If Tenet had paid as much attention to its writing and character work as it did to its visual and conceptual ambitions, it could have been a masterpiece instead of merely great. But it's still great. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2020
3.5/5 87% The Trip to Greece (2020) The Trip to Greece is like an old jumper. When you pull it on, you know all the familiar grooves of the threads, and you also know where all the snags are. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted May 24, 2020
3/5 65% The Lovebirds (2020) This is exactly the kind of movie you want to watch on Netflix, an inoffensive, silly and riotous comedy with sharp dialogue, that comes in at a brisk 87 minutes. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted May 24, 2020
3.5/5 81% Hearts and Bones (2020) Starring Hugo Weaving and directed by Ben Lawrence, the sombre and empathetic drama is a complex story about memory, trauma and family. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted May 18, 2020
3.5/5 94% Bad Education (2019) Fuelled by a fascinating story and its sensational performances, Bad Education is a movie worthy of its star-power and ambitions. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted May 18, 2020
1.5/5 28% The Rhythm Section (2020) When it comes to action movies, absurd, suspend-your-disbelief twists can be forgiven if the movie was exciting and propulsive. But what can't be forgiven is dullness. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted May 18, 2020
2.5/5 67% Extraction (2020) The action is what saves Extraction from being totally written off considering its story and characters are so generic - the screenplay from Joe Russo (Avengers: Endgame) does it no favours. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted May 18, 2020
3/5 81% Tigertail (2020) Yang is a talented filmmaker whose writing has always evidenced a deep, sophisticated understanding of the sometimes-contradictory nature of human emotions - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted May 18, 2020
3.5/5 88% Onward (2020) There's a lot to like in Onward, the least of which is its bright, appealing animation, character design and world building, but you wouldn't expect anything less from an outfit as accomplished as Pixar. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020
3/5 61% The Current War: Director's Cut (2019) Fuelled by impressive performances from a sensational cast, The Current War is a sturdy, well-paced historical drama. The production values - its set design, cinematography, costumes - are particularly winsome. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020
4/5 83% Queen & Slim (2019) Queen & Slim bowls you over with its powerful, charged story. Not one to be missed. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020
3/5 77% Military Wives (2020) Military Wives may follow a formula of sorts and you'll see every plot turn coming but it'll put a smile on your face nonetheless. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020
2/5 37% Spenser Confidential (2020) Spenser Confidential is too anaemic to be anything other than a paint-by-numbers bore offering nothing new and trying to skate by on Wahlberg's charisma alone. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020
2.5/5 83% The Way Back (2020) The Way Back is a humdrum movie saved from complete tedium by an affecting Affleck performance. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020
4/5 89% Dark Waters (2019) Dark Waters is as gripping as it is terrifying, and it'll claw into your consciousness in the same way that poisonous forever chemicals have claimed squatter's rights in your body. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020
2.5/5 38% Downhill (2020) Downhill is best watched without having seen Force Majeure because the comparisons are so unflattering. - News.com.au EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 5, 2020