"A fast-paced tale of revenge, 'Colombiana' is a better-than-average actioner made all the more interesting by its female lead. Zoe Saldana ('Star Trek' and 'Avatar') follows the path of 'Hanna' and 'Salt' as a tough-as-nails assassin. "
Apollo 18 (2011)
"Movies with 'found footage' have become quite popular since the advent of 'The Blair Witch Project.' The authentic feel adds to the horror element as these movies unfold. (One great example is 'The Last Exorcism,' a sadly under-seen movie.)"
Seven Days In Utopia (2011)
"Because of Dad and Deb, I could not detest this strange, good-hearted, sloppy movie. Dad discovered a passion for golf late in life. My dear friend Deb, too, speaks often about the challenge of the game, which has touched her profoundly. "
Shark Night 3D (2011)
"This is a pretty bad movie that (I think) knows it's a pretty bad movie. What keeps it from being even worse and entering into the useless 'torture porn' genre is its PG-13 rating, which teeters on the brink of 'R' territory throughout. "
The Debt (2011)
"Spy stories can pack a powerful punch if the motive is right. And that is exactly the case in this well-wrought thriller based on 'Ha-Hov,' which opened the 2010 Jewish Film Series in the Quad-Cities. The American version is nearly as compelling. "
"Putrid and completely unfunny, 'Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star' is a torturous exercise for a viewer. I can't count the times I wanted to walk out of this ghastly excuse for a movie. Still, I stayed with it. I just couldn't bring myself to leave."
"Action and smarts don't necessarily go hand-in-hand. But director Nicolas Winding Refn ('Bronson') deftly blends them in 'Drive,' a phenomenally entertaining movie that employs a haunting soundtrack, clever direction and entertaining characters. "
The Lion King (1994)
"Yes, it's a Disney film. But if you're a grown-up, don't let that stop you from sinking your teeth into 'The Lion King.' There's more depth, humor and dignity to this show than you'll see at almost any other movie so far this year. "
Straw Dogs (2011)
"It was a different era, a different time in American culture. Sam Peckinpah's 1971 'Straw Dogs' arguably has become a classic. It was a controversial film when it was released because of its depiction of a sexual assault. "
I Don't Know How She Does It (2011)
Dolphin Tale (2011)
"When I write the "Cookie Awards" in my annual Oscar-season column for the Quad-City Times, I always include this category: Most Embarrassing Crying Spell. There is no question which movie will 'win' the award. I bawled when I watched 'Dolphin Tale.' "
Killer Elite (2011)
"Even die-hard De Niro fans may be disappointed in his choice this time around. 'Killer Elite' does indeed present an ensemble of terrific actors trying to kill each other. Problem is, this adds up to a serviceable actioner but nothing more."
"A highly detailed, fascinating slice of baseball history, 'Moneyball' will appeal to both sports aficionados and those (like yours truly) who are not. This is the true story of how a manager met the challenge of a small budget and beat the odds."
What's Your Number? (2011)
"Sometimes, underneath a film's 'R' rating for sexual content and foul language, lies a core of sweetness and warmth. Unfortunately, for the unsuspecting viewer who is used to the quality of, say, Judd Apatow comedies, this is not one of those films."
Dream House (2011)
"This is the kind of thing that happens when there is a squabble about who controls a movie. Director Jim Sheridan bickered with studio over how scenes in this thriller should be shot, and scenes were redone after test audiences reacted negatively. "
Real Steel (2011)
"'Real Steel' about an estranged son and his father, a man who's been beaten down by repeated failures, a needy boy who finds something he can believe in, and, of course, it's a sports movie, too, because it's sort of a metallic 'Rocky.'"
The Ides of March (2011)
"It's taken me a long time to come to grips with this cinematic weakness - or maybe it's a blessing. I like dance movies, especially if the music is bouncy and it makes the characters happy. That's an infectious film sequence for me. "
The Thing (2011)
"This is the third time I've watched the John W. Campbell Jr. story 'Who Goes There?' unfold. I have to admit the monster in this one is the most disgusting and thereby the most fascinating of all three."
The Three Musketeers (2011)
"You might mistake the sound of swashbuckling for what it really is: Alexandre Dumas spinning in his grave. Much closer to 'Pirates of the Caribbean' lite than it is to 'The Three Musketeers,' this makes a mess of the classic Dumas tale. "
"ay what you will about his personal life: Tom Cruise is a genuine movie star. He's extremely talented and his timing is impeccable. Just watch him in his latest outing as special agent Ethan Hunt in 'Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol.' "
New Year's Eve (2011)
Margin Call (2011)
The Descendants (2011)
"A dramedy directed by the same hands that helmed "Sideways," "The Descendants" is one of the year's best movies. It's a grownup look at loss and betrayal, with terrific performances and memorable characters you'll root for, warts and all."
The Sitter (2011)
"Profane and for grownups only, 'The Sitter' is a raunchy fish-out-of-water story that's hilarious at times. Don't let the title fool you: This is extremely R-rated, as well it should be, and certainly isn't appropriate for children. "
"Please, please, please don't think you need to be a child to see this incredible movie. Indeed, "Hugo," a smart, classy film that deserves to be watched on the big screen in 3-D, will find a special place with grownups who love movie art and history."
The Muppets (2011)
"Dear Muppets: Thank goodness you're back. And thank goodness for the pens of Jason Segel and Nicholas Stoller, who wrote this brilliant screenplay to get you back on the big screen where you belong."
Arthur Christmas (2011)
"Here's hoping this becomes another family Christmas classic deserves. A veddy British take on the "monarchy" of Santa, this is an inventive, sweet-natured adventure about the importance of delivering a gift to the one child who was missed by Santa."
Happy Feet Two (2011)
J. Edgar (2011)
Jack and Jill (2011)
Friends With Benefits (2011)
Larry Crowne (2011)
"know, I know, the idea of talking animals is nothing new. But Kevin James helps make the concept funny, at least in spots (pun intended) during "Zookeeper." The movie certainly offers up some laughs, and it has a heart for animals as well. "
Horrible Bosses (2011)
Winnie the Pooh (2011)
Super 8 (2011)
Midnight in Paris (2011)
Green Lantern (2011)
The Art of Getting By (2011)
Mr. Popper's Penguins (2011)
Bad Teacher (2011)
Cars 2 (2011)