Just like the original, it's too caught up in its mythological zeal and furious pacing to do much for our "Indiana" jones. A capably filmed diversion that's breathlessly wired for whiplash but instantly forgettable.
Posted Jan 21, 2008
There's an unsettling exhilaration in the way "Mr. Brooks" plows through dark waters and damns every torpedo ... except for the one that sinks it. (Its name is Demi Moore. There's the germ of a great movie, but the disease of many stupid ones.
Posted Jun 1, 2007
Sprawling and as in need of Venn diagrams for every sextuple cross as it is, "At World's End" has subtleties amid its cattywampus craziness. It's also 2007's first blockbuster worth the constantly turned crank of big-budget moviemaking.
Posted May 25, 2007
It jumps the Shrek. No wonder Donkey and Puss in Boots get pushed aside. They have to make way for big bull in this disengenous, lifeless sequel that preaches individual destiny but behaves just like the cashcow it's been groomed to be.
Posted May 17, 2007
This sequel has more-fluid action and harder, meaner punches but never works our nerves like a speed bag in the way of its predecessor. Plus, it's too dumb to make its topical allegories any more than cursory coincidence.
Posted May 11, 2007
A browbeating domino effect of more, more, more with special effects that make things easier to see but harder to care about. With great filmmaking power has come great filmmaking laziness that turned a good franchise into candy-colored crud.
Posted May 4, 2007
Anthony Hopkins again confuses villainy for vaudeville and Ryan Gosling's so-so work isn't worth riding in the rumble seat with him over a career pothole. "Fracture" makes "My Cousin Vinny" look like a masterpiece of legal suspense.
Posted Apr 20, 2007
If not perfection, "Disturbia" achieves something more than most modern thrillers - the right to describe itself in that genre and a few others. This hodgepodge homage becomes stupid and shrill in its final reel, but it's a nifty good time.
Posted Apr 13, 2007
A timed challenge for five directors to remove, impale, explode or gorily drip to the floor every body part possible. Even if Tarantino eviscerates too much momentum at the midway point, it's still a giddy, ghastly blast.
Posted Apr 11, 2007
It isn't terrible, just terribly lazy. How many comedians would play two different sex-addicted lunkheads named Chazz in two different movies? Some funny bits here and there, but Will Ferrell's sports shtick is badly glazed over.
Posted Mar 30, 2007
It has one triple-super sudden-death revenge overtime too many. But inhale this meaty, juicy thriller like you would a Thickburger - before the dripping grease congeals on your fingers and you start thinking about what you're eating.
Posted Mar 26, 2007
"Seven Days to Live" is an OK country song, packed with faith, family and fighting for what's important. Oh, wait, that's what "Premonition" should have been, instead of a preposterous thriller that wastes Sandra Bullock's time, and ours.
Posted Mar 16, 2007
To hell with historical accuracy. What's required, but lacking, is the invocation of a butt-kicking right to continuously top itself. Artful decapitations, but a too-serious head on its shoulders.
Posted Mar 9, 2007
A mental slasher movie with strong lead performances, but too many literary pretenses to mask that it's little more than an 80-minute buildup to a throwdown to a throwdown between Oscar-winning actresses with no real sense of the story's leverage and lust
Posted Jan 31, 2007
On its face, it looks like "Dangerous Minds 2" without a Coolio song. It's not so good that it can't wait until it shows up on CBS, but it scribbles sensibly in the margins of the well-worn inspirational-teacher drama notebook.
Posted Jan 12, 2007
Week-old weed smoke practically wafts from the screen in a film that's most engaging once it's handed over to Justin Timberlake's excellent performance. But where it thinks it's delivering gut-punches, it's too often feigning with caricatures.
Posted Jan 12, 2007
Rarely entertaining, the movie is at least instructive. The statute of limitations on loud, dumb movies with Robin Williams and computer-generated animals is 11 years. It bypasses brand-name coattails right to the level of a straight-to-DVD sequel.
Posted Dec 22, 2006
Noyce surprisingly prefers slick surface treatment to cutting into the bones-deep legacy of South Africa's racial division. Nuanced performances and gripping laments are wasted on a sleek, empty action climax.
Posted Nov 3, 2006
The actors don't spar, but jab and feint into the stale air that comes with such stuffy, fossilized movies as this. Put together again more for new Oscars than new audiences, it's a handsomely shot disaster.
Posted Sep 29, 2006
The movie constantly teeters on becoming a filmed version of a Successories calendar. But The Rock's charismatic performance and Phil Joanou's sturdy direction yank hard against heart-tugging dialogue to pull the movie back with gravity and grit.
Posted Sep 18, 2006
No one can do that cool running knee drop like Tony Jaa, but he'd better start flexing his smiling muscles more if he wants to be the next Jackie Chan. All the bone crunching makes Steven Seagal look like a restrained kitty.
Posted Sep 8, 2006
Friends don't let friends drive a great comedy premise into the ground by making it too long, humorless and flat. The drinking stories you tell your friends are funnier.
Posted Aug 28, 2006
Will Ferrell's subversive middle finger at NASCAR is tall and occasionally hilarious, but only intermittently smarter than what that gesture implies.
Posted Aug 7, 2006
It's no bummer or mind-bender, but it might as well be the "Requiem for a Dream" of Adam Sandler's rowdy resume. George Bailey never would have farted in Mr. Potter's face, so it's clearly not a wonderful life. But it's decent enough.
Posted Jun 23, 2006
Jared Hess already made the one good movie he had in him. Jack Black needs a director who can save him from character-breaking shtick. The stretchy pants of "Nacho Libre" only go so far before stretchy patience sets in.
Posted Jun 16, 2006
The voices are great, a handful of puns are funny and the last half-hour is the Pixar movie we've expected to see. But that stalling sound in the opening race of "Cars" is Pixar's first-ever sputtering-out of imagination and immersion.
Posted Jun 9, 2006