Detroit News

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
B- The Dirt (2019) Adam Graham A bit of introspection would heighten the experience and deepen the characters, but Tremaine leans on familiar themes of tribal unity to glaze over the thinner sections of the script. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
B+ The Russian Five (2018) Adam Graham It's a story fans already know well, but "The Russian Five" lays it out in a compelling, easily digestible fashion. And it shows how without a major assist from Russia, Detroit would have never become Hockeytown. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
B Us (2019) Adam Graham "Us" will pin you to your seat and leave you stiff with fear. The mystery it weaves, however, doesn't yield any immediately satisfying answers, only more questions. But at least it gets you thinking, and these days, that's plenty. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
A- Gloria Bell (2018) Adam Graham Moore digs in and finds the intricacies in her character. She's not showy, but she turns in an honest, understated performance that all comes together in a joyous, melancholy, liberating dance set to Laura Branigan's "Gloria." EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
B Five Feet Apart (2019) Adam Graham That doesn't dampen the work of Richardson and Sprouse, or the romance at the film's center. "Five Feet Apart" works hard for its tears. But it's the honesty of the performances that makes it worth the investment. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
A- Pájaros de verano (2018) Adam Graham The film's glorious cinematography (hat tip to David Gallego) compliments the directors' vision, making "Birds of Passage" a film that flies as high as its ambition. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
B Giant Little Ones (2018) Adam Graham [An] emotionally honest and heartfelt look at figuring out one's path through the difficult journey of adolescence. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
B Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror (2019) Adam Graham People go to horror films to scream and squirm and have a good time. "Horror Noire" shows that to many, horror films are more than just blood and guts. It's a matter of life and death. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
C The Wedding Guest (2018) Adam Graham Dev Patel is uncharacteristically icy and mournful as a hired kidnapper in "The Wedding Guest," but there's little in this flat thriller to warrant accepting its invitation. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
C Climax (2018) Adam Graham In "Enter the Void," he used this effect to mirror the experience of a hallucination. But here, it seems the bad boy is running out of tricks, and he's hammering your skull just to prove he can keep doing it. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
B- Yardie (2018) Adam Graham While "Yardie" hits familiar beats, viewers get the sense they're on Elba's turf. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
C The Kid (2019) Adam Graham "The Kid" manages some picturesque shots of Western landscapes, and Hawke, who has hit a career stride in recent years, wouldn't know how to turn in a bad performance if he tried. But there's not enough here to make this journey worth taking. EDIT
Posted Mar 8, 2019
B A Tuba to Cuba (2018) Adam Graham "Musical conversation cancels out complication," one musician says in the film, and "A Tuba to Cuba" is a testament to that statement. EDIT
Posted Mar 8, 2019
D I'm Not Here (2017) Adam Graham The period details aren't convincing in any of the film's eras, and the ambiguous finish is more harmful than hopeful to viewers looking for an ending to this sad bastard story. EDIT
Posted Mar 8, 2019
C Captain Marvel (2019) Adam Graham In the grand scheme of the Marvel Universe, however, "Captain Marvel" feels like a supporting player, not a featured attraction. EDIT
Posted Mar 7, 2019
B+ Triple Frontier (2019) Adam Graham It would be easy for Chandor and Boal to take "Triple Frontier" down an obvious path, but the direction they choose is more complex, morally damning, and affecting. "Triple Frontier" is a smart heist movie with a conscience and a soul. EDIT
Posted Mar 6, 2019
A- Never Look Away (2018) Tom Long You won't look away. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2019
C Greta (2018) Adam Graham If "Greta" is satire, Huppert seems to understand so better than Moretz; the fact that they're consistently on different pages renders "Greta" a major mess, but it's also what could extend its shelf-life well past its sell-by date. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2019
B Lords of Chaos (2018) Adam Graham Åkerlund stages the film's violence with an unsettling, unflinching reality, to drive home the difference between entertainment and the real world. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2019
C Everybody Knows (2018) Adam Graham A great finish can save an otherwise ho-hum movie, just as a flat ending can undo an otherwise strong one. "Everybody Knows" is an example of the latter. It's disappointing for everybody involved. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2019
A Apollo 11 (2019) Adam Graham It's a glorious ode to where we've been, and it makes you question how far we've come today. Not bad for a bunch of 50-year-old home movies. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2019
B- How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) Adam Graham The "How to Train Your Dragon" movies are respected - the first two garnered nominations for Best Animated Feature - but this third chapter doesn't garner more than a polite appreciation. EDIT
Posted Feb 22, 2019
B Capernaum (2018) Adam Graham Co-writer and director Nadine Labaki shoots "Capernaum" with a fluent, documentary-like realism. EDIT
Posted Feb 22, 2019
B Fighting With My Family (2019) Adam Graham A solid cast and Merchant's respectful approach elevates the material to the top rope, but it's rising star Pugh who hits her finisher. EDIT
Posted Feb 22, 2019
F Donnybrook (2018) Adam Graham There are no winners here, only losers. EDIT
Posted Feb 20, 2019
B Isn't It Romantic (2019) Adam Graham "Isn't it Romantic" earns its place in the pantheon of rom-coms it loves to parody. EDIT
Posted Feb 13, 2019
B- Happy Death Day 2U (2019) Adam Graham In all the world-jumping and talk of quantum physics, a bit of the fun of the original film is lost. EDIT
Posted Feb 13, 2019
B+ Alita: Battle Angel (2019) Adam Graham Watching "Alita: Battle Angel," the eye-popping, groundbreaking, visually dazzling stunner from Robert Rodriguez and James Cameron, you can feel the ground beneath you shifting. EDIT
Posted Feb 13, 2019
C- The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part (2019) Adam Graham "Lego 2" is like stepping on a Lego. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
B High Flying Bird (2019) Adam Graham It's a slick story with a slick look to match. He shoots, he scores. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
D The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then the Bigfoot (2018) Tom Long [I]t's not near as much fun as the title might imply. In fact, you get the feeling the title was slapped on the movie after someone realized how thoroughly awful it was. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
C- Berlin, I Love You (2019) Adam Graham A love letter to a city should at least be so in love with its location that it sweeps you off your feet and makes you want to go there. "Berlin" fails to make a proper case for Berlin. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
B Cold Pursuit (2019) Adam Graham It's a delirious ride, full of fun and darkly comic moments, and its just the spike Neeson needs as his badass persona had seemingly run its course. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
B They Shall Not Grow Old (2018) Adam Graham It's a true act of revival. EDIT
Posted Feb 1, 2019
A- Cold War (2018) Adam Graham "Cold War" captivates and transcends barriers of language and culture. It's a gorgeous tale as rocky as it is romantic. EDIT
Posted Feb 1, 2019
C Velvet Buzzsaw (2019) Adam Graham "Velvet Buzzsaw" has fun sending up the pretentiousness of the art world and its collective clamoring to discover the Next Big Thing, but it loses its bite as it morphs into a directionless horror romp. EDIT
Posted Feb 1, 2019
B+ The Guilty (2018) Tom Long "The Guilty" is a nerve-wracking exercise in tension that also manages to reveal itself in layers, leaving assumptions dashed on the floor. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2019
D- Serenity (2019) Adam Graham A lot of things have to go wrong for a film to misfire the way "Serenity" does, and all of them happen here. EDIT
Posted Jan 24, 2019
B The Kid Who Would Be King (2019) Adam Graham [Cornish] wisely speaks the language of children without talking down to them. EDIT
Posted Jan 24, 2019
B+ Stan & Ollie (2018) Adam Graham "Stan & Ollie" has plenty to say about the things that bring us together, and the things that keep us together. EDIT
Posted Jan 24, 2019
D+ Destroyer (2018) Adam Graham Kidman is one of our great screen actresses, but here she destroys everything in her path. EDIT
Posted Jan 18, 2019
B The Standoff at Sparrow Creek (2018) Adam Graham There is a timely element to "Sparrow Creek" that speaks to our current moment and mood in this country, but the simple, effective nature of Dunham's sharp storytelling makes him a talent to watch going forward. EDIT
Posted Jan 18, 2019
C- Glass (2019) Adam Graham "Glass," it turns out, is broken. EDIT
Posted Jan 18, 2019
D The 6th Friend (2016) Adam Graham A flat horror thriller that takes way too long to get to its (severely lacking) horror or thrills, "The 6th Friend" is dead on arrival. EDIT
Posted Jan 11, 2019
C- Replicas (2018) Adam Graham "Replicas" is not without its laughs, even if they're at the expense of the film. For a bad movie, you could do a lot worse. Boot the mapping service, baby. EDIT
Posted Jan 11, 2019
D+ Ben Is Back (2018) Adam Graham "Ben is Back" is one of those awards season films that looks on paper to be a slam dunk: Mother and child relationship, drugs and drama is a cocktail for Oscar gold. In this case, the dunk is a dud. EDIT
Posted Jan 10, 2019
C The Upside (2018) Adam Graham The clichés are stacked up like skyscrapers in "The Upside," the affable and soft-peddled story of a billionaire quadriplegic and the street-smart ex-con who teaches him how to live. EDIT
Posted Jan 10, 2019
Manbiki kazoku (2018) Tom Long Writer-director Hirokazu Kore-eda fills the film with grace notes, humor and fine observations, circling and filling out each character while leaning more on innocence than corruption. EDIT
Posted Jan 4, 2019
B- On the Basis of Sex (2018) Adam Graham As a trailblazing figure, Ruth Bader Ginsburg deserves a knockout biopic about her life. Instead she gets... a serviceable, but by no means extraordinary origin story of a pre-Supreme Court RBG as she begins to shape her legacy. EDIT
Posted Jan 4, 2019
D+ Escape Room (2019) Adam Graham It's like the filmmakers themselves were locked in an escape room with no way out. At least, in the end, it's true to the film's premise. "Escape Room" is trapped. EDIT
Posted Jan 4, 2019