Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada) - Rotten Tomatoes

Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

All reviews published on Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada) always count toward the Tomatometer score because it is a Tomato-approved publication.
Feels too much like a shrugging shuffle around the bases. Scenes are overscored, there are more references to dicks than in a Judd Apatow boxset, and the story's too episodic, with little tension other than will-they-stay-together?
Posted Sep 13, 2010
Tosses off some blunt-force one-liners, coasts on character impersonation, riffs off the originals' plot points, and pretends its cheap imitation of the Saga's mopey, slow scenes are parody. In other words, Vampires Suck bites.
Posted Sep 8, 2010
Passes the way a pet lover hopes euthanasia goes for their beloved feline or canine-a blur of motion, moments drifting by in a numbing fog, then the blissful end, free of pain at last. A forgettable, clunky CGI tinkertoy.
Posted Sep 8, 2010
This is an almost quaint throwback of a kids' movie that ends up enjoyably ragtag and cluttered, all of it contained by an emphasis on neighbourhood and maturity. Realistic, refreshing, and reassuring.
Posted Sep 8, 2010
Predators (2010)
If Predators had plunged deeper into the bloodsport-honour-hunting, kill-or-be-killed psyche of both sides, this could've been a truly jolting reboot.
Posted Sep 8, 2010
Knight & Day (2010)
Half-aware it's an action flick while trying to breezily amuse, and half-alert to its comic potential while roaring off on a chase or shoot-out, it staggers along. Knight and Day's potential vanishes in the haze of a mundane situation-comedy.
Posted Jul 5, 2010
Marmaduke (2010)
'The conventionality and predictability of every scene, the lame puns, the absence of comic rhythm, the fart jokes butt-ending the film--all was sly metafilmic parody of the sheer banality and crassness of so much present-day film comedy, yes?' (Silence.)
Posted Jul 5, 2010
Death comes to us all, though perhaps never so depressingly slowly as with a 90-minute clubbing over the head by a bad comedy. A deadly dull farce . . . a machete-choppy non-buildup of obvious schticks.
Posted May 3, 2010
Call this theme-park ride Around the Ancient World in 80 Minutes. Creatures get ridiculously larger and deadlier as action-scenes advance to the next video-game level. Dull, grey, spiritless.
Posted Apr 22, 2010
Repo Men (2010)
Beyond its shapeless sense of the future, humdrum story and fairly routine plot mechanics . . . this flick mostly recycles old action-movie parts.
Posted Apr 22, 2010
Greg's not wimpy--he fears being a pussy. This apparently gives him licence to be a total dickhead. The film should be retitled Diary of a Sociopathic Kid . . . it offers a cynical, shrugging view of today's tweens.
Posted Apr 22, 2010
Green Zone (2010)
Often reaches 'gripping' on the cinematic alert level and shows more political smarts than most films on Iraq, let alone action movies. Ultimately over-ambitious yet still one of the best battlefield films for avoiding war-glorification.
Posted Mar 18, 2010
Numbs deepest in suggesting the war and its aftermath fanned flames burning within. It's clear what '20s and '30s Germany will spark the fuse to after Haneke's shown us, tick by tick, the little bombs within little lives and little lies, black and white.
Posted Mar 18, 2010
Dulled down by a leaden epic formula, the plot becomes jerkily predictable on its Lord of the Rings route. Comedy and charming daffiness are sorely lacking--it's mostly ashen doom and gloom. 'Tediouser and tediouser!' cried Alice.
Posted Mar 15, 2010
Cop Out (2010)
The victim swears the director is one Kevin Smith. Yet the high level of non-funniness here, registering 7.6 on a yawn-alyzer, suggests Mr. Smith is being impersonated by a talentless gun-for-hire trying to pass for someone who can make people
Posted Mar 15, 2010
An exercise in style so overheated that the controlled burn reignites the gothic's tropes. Slips out of its genre shackles by suggesting we're eager to drug ourselves on the thriller formula.
Posted Mar 3, 2010
Another attempted launch of a teen-aimed franchise, but this show-boat is rowing through the motions. Seen-that, been-there fantasy-epic stuff with dialogue more wooden and hollow than the Trojan Horse.
Posted Mar 3, 2010
When in Rome (2010)
The scenery is dull and the romance is a boring ride--neither the places nor people offer much to write home about. Aimless and ambling along, this is a rom-com that seems totally random.
Posted Feb 11, 2010
Easy resolutions pop up and there's no real drama, with flat jokes, overacting and wasted comic-talent voices slathered between the plot's thin slices-of-strife like cheap peanut butter.
Posted Jan 21, 2010
Armored (2009)
The low-level desperation and the wavering of consciences, against a working-class backdrop in a slumping neighbourhood, turns this into not just a fairly gripping heist-gone-wrong movie, but a fairly gritty reflection of an anxious, bankrupted America.
Posted Dec 11, 2009
Late Spring (1949)
Haiku-like in its title, its interest in the undramatic silences between scenes, and its enfolding of human behaviour within nature, Late Spring offers tenderness in the place of melodrama and patient truth in the place of sudden revelation.
Posted Dec 2, 2009
The Box (2009)
One of those thrillers that, looking back on it, has some plot ribbons with frayed, fuzzy ends. Just not quite sharp-edged enough to open doors to images and fears in your head you never knew were there, but now want desperately to lock up.
Posted Nov 13, 2009
As characters get startled but you don't and you suspenselessly wait for everyone to figure out what we realized long ago (Mr. Harris kills people, then 105 minutes of your life), you may well wonder about the bloody point of it all.
Posted Oct 23, 2009
The vapid couples become sniping or sarcastic chunks of white blandness even sharks would spit back up. A kind of bad video-game romance-comedy: 2D characters, flat dialogue, an exotic backdrop, and lame new levels of relationship challenges.
Posted Oct 23, 2009
Sorority Row (2009)
After these Bratz dolls dump the Corpsey One down a mine shaft, the plot follows, dropping us into dark spaces without any emotional gravitas, real scares, smart twists or even B-movie fun.
Posted Oct 7, 2009
Four stages of Acceptance Of 2-Star Movie: 1) Embarrassed for lead character. 2) Embarrassed for actor playing lead character. 3) Admiration for movie's all-out, gawky commitment to awkward comedy. 4) Annoyance with usual rom-com schmaltz-injections.
Posted Sep 11, 2009
An SUV of a comedy: enjoy hate crimes, homophobia and terrorizing women? Then this hulking, gas-guzzling beast--completely out-of-touch with the economic climate and progressive politics--is for you!
Posted Sep 11, 2009
Up (2009)
Themes of adventure, home, and inner childhood are all tweaked and rejuvenated with as much spark and pop as high-flying Carl himself. A spry, imaginative romp through the jungle of the imagination.
Posted Jun 16, 2009
The Pool (2008)
Shimmers silently. A quietly remarkable film, for its seeming simplicity, its careful rhythms, and its interest in a place and its spirit.
Posted Jun 16, 2009
Fighting (2009)
This is Rocky for the UFC generation . . . but what Dito Montiel's film lacks in subtlety it makes up for with heartfeltness, though not quite artfulness.
Posted May 4, 2009
Most revealing as an unintended allegory for Russian rulers' continuing will, in their aspiration for absolutism, to lead a powerful and menacing empire, regardless of those people far below who get crushed by an iron fist.
Posted May 4, 2009
Both work and play--camerawork and screenplay--elevate Kevin Macdonald's State of Play from the usual conspiracy flick into a smart thriller.
Posted May 4, 2009
Duplicity (2009)
Much of the fun is all about what's 'in play'--acting--from the spy and lover roles these characters may or may not be playing and which sides (personal, professional) they're playing for or against, to our assumptions about these stars' personas.
Posted Apr 3, 2009
Lilja 4-ever (2003)
So seamless and relentlessly powerful that the social-realism of not just this film, but the genre itself, is pushed to its limit. Acting and action that rips so deeply, you'll feel you've got to do more than simply watch.
Posted Feb 26, 2009
Taken (2009)
The usual vengeance-hunter plot, acting's sandblasted by action, and the movie rips through Paris like a One-Man Army American on a single-minded mission.
Posted Feb 5, 2009
Like a mall, has long stretches where you see nothing of interest and a generally stale air to it. Unlike a mall, you can't just browse and then move on to a better section.
Posted Jan 22, 2009
The Unborn (2009)
Not deep or all that visually imaginative--Goyer never wavers from the usual slow build-up to a sudden fright, and the ending is all fight-and-flight, no shock-and-awe--but certainly unboring.
Posted Jan 15, 2009
Twilight (2008)
Mix 150-proof Victorian romance with some HP (Harry Potter) sauce, add a dash of Munsters humour. . . . The heroine becomes obsessed with surrender and submission to a man constantly tempted to kill her. That's one sucked-up subtext.
Posted Nov 27, 2008
Can't quite make it to the front of the pride. The animation is fine; a lot of the lines are snappy; there are a few nicely absurd situations. But each main character gets a semi-intriguing subplot that isn't developed, then disappears. The pace hobbles.
Posted Nov 13, 2008
A junior-musical, trapped in a vacuum of utterly self-aware earnestness . . . the vacuum-seal of a pre-packaged Disney product. Wish fulfillment%u2014-what tweeners want high school to be like--that also short-sells a retro American Dream.
Posted Oct 30, 2008
Max Payne (2008)
Slaloms between gritty action and comic-book noir before skidding out into overblown fantasy. The plotline is weak and stretched-out. As the end nears, the pacing gets choppy. But by then, Max Payne lost that important sidekick, Minnie Pleasure.
Posted Oct 30, 2008
Watch some rich folks with unbelievably pampered pets in an LA enclave make money for studio executives. What would be 'depressing' is if the 'real' world out there ever made the sight of clothed and bejewelled lapdogs talking unfunny, right?
Posted Oct 9, 2008
Grief is trotted out and cheaply exploited in order to burnish instant love with faux-realism . . . And then the ending--where we're told that we not only can but MUST believe in love, and life, again. Who knew a romance could be so depressingly cynical?
Posted Oct 9, 2008
Eagle Eye (2008)
Surprisingly flatlines less than it should . . . But 90 minutes after its intriguing opening, Eagle Eye zooms beyond its reassurance that, hey, basically everything's OK post-Patriot Act, folks, to resurrect a Hollywood happy ending from the dead.
Posted Oct 9, 2008
'There's this guy, Tank, and other guys hire him to give their exes "emotional terrorism." It's a romantic comedy.''Can you throw in a cheap anti-Catholic and anti-Semitic joke? And have Tank tell some kids how to pull a brutal sexaul trick on a woman?'
Posted Oct 9, 2008
The pacing is usually clumsy and transitions are clunky. There are two bravura sequences not quite worth the price of submission . . . other scenes suggest that the Pang Brothers really want to make a new horror film, not retread stagnant action plots.
Posted Oct 9, 2008
The Queen (2006)
A disappointingly claustrophobic play at sympathy for someone so out of touch with her 'subjects.' And why blow it up for the big screen? . . . Where's the arc? The tragic flaw? The ebbs and flows to her character? . . . A middle-of-the-pack chamber drama
Posted Oct 9, 2008
WALL-E (2008)
A haunting, fantastic, and eerie robot reverie. Deft little touches add more and more complex, heartfelt circuitry to Wall-E's character. A beautifully wrought film.
Posted Jul 10, 2008
The end reveals just how poetic, shifting and dazzling Nichols' touch was all along. That's because Shotgun Stories manages to pull away from a hair-trigger resolution with the same inherent right-ness that loaded the story with such tragic force.
Posted Jul 10, 2008
The Muslims here feel bound up in an internal battle (the primary meaning of jihad) as they try to make peace between divine and earthly loves. What's lacking are deeper, more involved ruminations on such feelings, reconciliations and self-recriminations.
Posted Jul 1, 2008