Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Alberta) - Rotten Tomatoes

Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Alberta)

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Here, Tintin and pals are semi-cartoon characters careening through an unreal world. Instead of charming, intriguing, and exciting us, Spielberg and co. usually try to bowl us over.
Posted Jan 12, 2012
Young Adult (2011)
Tragicomically stares on at this lost alcoholic, drifting through a hollow strip-mall world but groping back for her teenage days in narcissistic nostalgia.
Posted Jan 12, 2012
Hugo (2011)
Scorsese, now in the winter of his career, has tapped into his own childlike passion for film with this late-period masterpiece.
Posted Jan 12, 2012
Dwells on how, just beneath the surface of that teen who seems a shrugging idiot or that woman who seems an everyday mom, there rustles an undergrowth of pain, or loss, or heartache.
Posted Jan 12, 2012
A plucky, clever animated Xmas tale that has much of Aardman's attention to quirky detail (bulbous noses), wordplay, and unconventional heroes (Arthur's fuelled by worry).
Posted Jan 12, 2012
Matched Kubrick's photographic eye to a story about watching, transformed him into a director of the epic, and made one giant leap in sci-fi cinema that's never been matched.
Posted Jan 12, 2012
Akira (1988)
Offers rolling-paper-thin female characters. Ethnic stereotypes are lazily snowballed at us. And it has the usual boring, hokey spirit-of-the-season moments.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
In Time (2011)
This alternate world's hollowness drains the movie, blanching the noir. Cheesy, corny moments pop up throughout. Grinds its potential down into a clockwork chase movie.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
The tension is slowly bled out, the metacommentary on movies' phantom power is eerie, and the directors capture a creepiness in the sleepy, after-hour spaces of home.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
Manhattan (1979)
The Big Year (2011)
Veers close to being The Bucketful-of-Birds List. So pleasantly decent and hesitant to be complex that it's rather simple-minded; it just doesn't make an obsession sing to us.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
Real Steel (2011)
Characters' smug, this-is-so-cool!ness and jingoistic, heartland subtext tries to knock us into submission. The hero's one of those animatronic adults in kid's clothing.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
Abduction (2011)
Boring fugitive action-flick meets insipid teen romance. Well before the movie shows any hint of ending, you'll hope for a quick abduction, by any means, from the cineplex.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
Dolphin Tale (2011)
Sometimes drifts into the emotional shallows rather than letting its 'inspired by a true story' soar on its own.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
Moneyball (2011)
A sports movie about disappointment and falling just short. Manages to make the dealing, stealing, and brain-wheeling in stadium offices enthralling.
Posted Nov 11, 2011
Straw Dogs (2011)
Dumb crosscutting, a sickening, stupid rape scene, and the inane addition of a Steinbeck-ian subplot make the movie a cheap, exploitative build-up to the climactic carnage.
Posted Sep 22, 2011
Sarah's Key (2011)
Loses some force in its latter half but the key story remains gripping. Unlocks 70-year-old horrors so the present can't shut the door on past complicities and crimes.
Posted Sep 22, 2011
Colombiana (2011)
Gets off some fire-flashes of interest but nothing more sustained. The romance subplot is rote and there are some ludicrous moments. Ultimately, it seems hollow-point.
Posted Sep 1, 2011
A nice mix of old-fashioned imagination (anagrams, pranks, secret spaces) and newfangled effects (gizmos, gadgets, graphics), it's a rollicking, never obnoxious family flick.
Posted Sep 1, 2011
The Smurfs (2011)
It's got witty moments and (for an American picture) some relaxed, funny, nearly realistic sex scenes but it's too slickly self-aware and intently selling itself at times.
Posted Sep 1, 2011
There's visual overstatement, stone-heavy exposition, self-seriousness (masquerading as maturity), CGI-laden plot (falling short of spectacle), and predictable action sequences.
Posted Jul 22, 2011
Never dark, witty, or smart enough (the line '[She's] had the crazy f***ed out of her' is up for 2011's Laziest Misogyny Joke), the murder-your-boss plot also lags and jags.
Posted Jul 21, 2011
Zookeeper (2011)
Should've been called Hey Kids, Watch A Pudgy Man Take Pratfalls And Act Like An Alpha A**hole-There'll Be Talking Animals!
Posted Jul 21, 2011
March of the Penguins Plus Puerile People. There's the cute-animals schtick, lazy toilet humour, and a squawwwking message about rediscovering both inner child and family.
Posted Jun 22, 2011
Hyperactively desperate-to-entertain and also veers into too-episodic, too-peppy and too-kooky territory. Would be a lot more funner if it were much less dumber.
Posted Jun 22, 2011
Super 8 (2011)
Throwback sci-fi. But the big-show moments, concocted from today's blockbuster formula, clash with the '70s small-town play of these kids' lives, often nicely observed.
Posted Jun 22, 2011
Smartly grounds the genre's pop-fiction and flashy effects in an era of clashing superpowers and political paranoia. And refreshingly refuses to say it's so super being human.
Posted Jun 22, 2011
Disney-sanitizer wafts through--there are few bloody, mercenary moments. Some action sequences are cartoonish. And for such a talky picture, the dialogue's not charged enough.
Posted Jun 22, 2011
Fast Five (2011)
Spins its wheels. Shifts between gravel-voiced speeches (about true family) and bicep-offs. Throttling dialogue, long hard looks, and heist clichés skid on for blocks.
Posted Jun 22, 2011
Quietly radical and deeply inspiring . . . thanks to a fervid commitment by Willem Dafoe as Jesus, a swirling, cross-cultural score from Peter Gabriel and some thrilling interpretations of the Bible. The ending is a rare moment of transcendence on film.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
It's Animal House Does The Holy Grail; the wit and antics of The Princess Bride are replaced with porn-imagery and swear words. Beyond such lazy writing, the movie can't really be bothered to spoof any elements of the fantasy genre.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
Hop (2011)
Almost every scene's overscored, overtold or overdone to the point of the jokes getting runny. Hop seems to think filling out the formula and being super-duper eager-to-please is enough. Hobbling along, this bunny just ain't funny.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
Sucker Punch (2011)
A spectacular flop of fancy, mind-blowingly empty. Muddles along as if Nintendo fused Cabaret and A Streetcar Named Desire for people who play Call of Duty. Snyder's carved out a pointless new subgenre--call it video-game camp.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
A delicious but not too-smooth take on LA noir. Tight shots keep us close to the ratcheting action, and there are just the right bits of grit, and the right pace to the twists, to make The Lincoln Lawyer a steadily seat-gripping cinematic cruise.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
The whole Twilight lusting-to-lose-her-virginity-to-her-true-love story falls even flatter in a Grimm historical setting. Anachronistic, true-romance clichés sap the plot's strength, while the visuals get more and more predictable.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
Rango (2011)
The kind of computer animation that lingers so exquisitely on the little things. The romance is sweetly underplayed and Coen-like moments of hyper-erudition and eccentric, grizzled characters make for a rollicking escapade.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
Beastly (2011)
Some snappy pacing and hints of pain throbbing beneath the cool sarcasm of teens push much of Beastly past its skin-deep pandering to a teen demographic. Still, this 21st-century fairy tale doesn't wilt, but it's not quite refreshed, either.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
A romantic thriller that manages a rather remarkable feat: sending us on a headlong pursuit of life's meaning, even as the banal everydayness of real life closes in on one side and the anything-goes magic of science fiction closes in on the other.
Posted Apr 25, 2011
Drive Angry (2011) and revenge-porn. No surprise there, but nothing of much interest either. Especially coming after the carnage of so much pulpy fiction, backstories and explanations drag, while gestures towards emotion seem pointless.
Posted Mar 8, 2011
Hall Pass (2011)
Has the smart, relaxed, real-life drive of the Farrellys' best comedies. (There are even two poop sight-gags that are shockingly funny.) Too bad the wives' storyline is so unfunny and uncomplicated.
Posted Mar 8, 2011
Unknown (2011)
A marketmentary trying to be canny but coming off canned. The one truth slipping out of this 105-minute ad is that, at this stratospheric level of social-networked stardom, the star and his entourage float along in a bubble of total self-delusion.
Posted Mar 8, 2011
Danny and co.'s elaborate ruse, and the movie's impersonation of a comedy, continues with bad fake accents (Cockney, German), more schtick and a dash of homophobia. But there's still room for sexism!
Posted Mar 8, 2011
The Roommate (2011)
The blandest thriller unimaginable; it's like watching the vacuum of outer space on a screen for 93 minutes. The story and direction are so lobotomized, only some evil computer, using commercial-formulas and genre-algorithms, could have manufactured it.
Posted Mar 8, 2011
It's mostly overstuffed with some funny/odd, but never throwaway, lines. And some amusing, nearly quirky, but never tired secondary characters. And, in a flick all about avoiding a serious relationship, a compelling acting-commitment from Portman.
Posted Jan 27, 2011
The Dilemma (2011)
A Titanic wreck that makes you wonder if anyone was at the helm. The plot's lost in a Bermuda triangle of exhausted-formula, genre-muddle and hackneyed storytelling. Bromance, dark drama, slapstick, and rambling, wanna-be-funny speeches get mixed up.
Posted Jan 27, 2011