Hartford Courant

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
Space Jam (1996) Malcolm Johnson "Space Jam" soon demonstrates that this teaming of Michael Jordan and Bugs Bunny adds up to an air ball, not a slam-dunking "Who Framed Roger Rabbit." EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
1.5/4 Cruel Intentions (1999) Malcolm Johnson Yet after Cruel Intentions evolves into a boy-gets-girl, boy-loses-girl saga, it staggers towards a half-baked climax, and an absurd aftermath. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2019
Unforgiven (1992) Malcolm Johnson With its unflinching depictions of brutalities, Eastwood's new western calls to mind the work of Sam Peckinpah. But Eastwood's cadences are slow, his antiheros rueful, his atmosphere murky and chilling. EDIT
Posted Feb 20, 2019
3.5/4 The English Patient (1996) Malcolm Johnson ...a deliberate, lengthy but always fascinating film... EDIT
Posted Feb 20, 2019
3/4 The Beast (1975) Deborah Hornblow It dizzily and artfully celebrates the power of sex and lust without regard to anything but the primal, animal appetite. EDIT
Posted Feb 6, 2019
Sleepless in Seattle (1993) Malcolm Johnson The rest of this romantic comedy about the strange power that pulls a man and woman together... only reinforces the notion that Ephron is a filmmaker whose time has come at last, after years as a novelist, screenwriter and feminist wit. EDIT
Posted Jan 24, 2019
1.5/5 Pokémon: The First Movie (1999) Hartford Courant Yes, parents, you poor things, "Pokemon" (derived from "Pocket Monsters") has morphed into yet another money-milking form, and it is going to cost you. EDIT
Posted Jan 15, 2019
The First Wives Club (1996) Malcolm Johnson Those in seach of a classic adult comedy -- a latter-day version of "The Women" -- are urged to join the "Club." EDIT
Posted Jan 8, 2019
Clifford (1994) Malcolm Johnson Whether he is pretending to be angelic or flashing satanic looks, Short makes Clifford an often riotous comic creation. And Grodin, with his fussy airs, makes a perfect fall guy. EDIT
Posted Dec 27, 2018
Event Horizon (1997) Owen McNally Very early on, this defective dramatic vehicle runs out of fuel, degenerates into a slasher/Hellraiser wannabe and self- destructs among explosions, flames and streams of blood. EDIT
Posted Dec 14, 2018
3/4 The Cable Guy (1996) Malcolm Johnson For those with an appetite for Carrey and an admiration for Stiller, their zany collaboration will prove both funny and provocative. EDIT
Posted Dec 12, 2018
2.5/4 Mars Attacks! (1996) Malcolm Johnson Even Tim Burton's maddest fans will feel disappointment creeping in as the invasion careens along. EDIT
Posted Dec 6, 2018
The Craft (1996) Malcolm Johnson [It] will perhaps inspire a few rebel kids to search out a black-magic emporium or to make the sort of fashion statements that make Balk so amusingly spooky. All others should balk at taking in this suspenseless, hollow, kitchily crafted Carrie. EDIT
Posted Dec 5, 2018
Dr. Giggles (1992) Malcolm Johnson Friday the 23rd, the day of its opening, will live in trivia infamy as one of the low points in the history of the lowly splatter genre. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2018
Species (1995) Malcolm Johnson Species begins stunningly. Soon, however, as a murderous outsider disguised as a supermodel madly tries to breed, Feldman's screenplay betrays its ingenious concept. EDIT
Posted Dec 2, 2018
Moby Dick (1930) James Endrst There are moments on this unsteady ship, as well, when it's clear that the Pequod is carrying more than a cargo of whale. There's ham aboard, too, and plenty to go 'round. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2018
In the Gloaming (1997) James Endrst The conclusions that viewers might draw about this family, too, are a bit muddled. And yet, In the Gloaming' is an hour well worth investing in, an often deeply moving portrayal of an American family that too many, no doubt, know too well. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2018
White Dwarf (1995) James Endrst From what I've seen, there's no way White Dwarf is going to be big. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2018
The Three Stooges (2000) James Endrst As for the fleeting, tentative attempts to re-create classic Stooges bits, they are the film's greatest failure EDIT
Posted Jun 27, 2018
Secret Cutting (2000) James Endrst For parents with teenage children, the story is terrifying. It's something else to think about, to look into -- rather than merely tossing and turning at night with worry. Peterson offers a powerful but understated performance. EDIT
Posted Jun 27, 2018
Mother, May I Sleep With Danger? (1996) James Endrst Mother, May I Sleep With Danger won't win any Emmys. It's a movie at least half of America could write in between commercials. The funny thing is, once you get past the opening credits, you're hooked. EDIT
Posted Jun 27, 2018
2.5/4 God Is My Witness (1992) Deborah Hornblow It will not be to everyone's taste, but for broad- minded cinema-goers, it makes for a delicious and memorable adventure. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Igby Goes Down (2002) Malcolm Johnson If this were a short story, it would belong in The New Yorker in the days of J.D. Salinger. It is both droll and grim, often handsome and tasteful with its cinematography and production values. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron (2002) Malcolm Johnson Visually stunning, and fitfully dramatic. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
The Game (1997) Malcolm Johnson Douglas finally musters one of his best performances to carry Fincher's essay on self-reliance to its exciting, if absurd endgame. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Duets (2000) Malcolm Johnson Besides its dim and sometimes slipshod look, this little ensemble work slides from pretentious flights of philosophizing to touches of smart smut as it surveys the American dream as pursued by various warbling wanderers. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
The New Age (1994) Malcolm Johnson The realities of their performances prove insufficient to pull Tolkin's bitter and deliberate tale from its doldrums, however, and this film lives u p to its title. Most of the time, it proves as repetitive and empty as an endless New Wave rhapsody. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Mumford (1999) Malcolm Johnson Lawrence Kasdan's clever, inventive and endearing ensemble portrait unfolds as a latter-day Frank Capra fable. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Pocahontas (1995) Malcolm Johnson Its comic characters are paltry; its villain is a bloated, harmless Captain Hook; and its story line is negligible as well as palpably silly. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Chungking Express (1994) Malcolm Johnson Chungking Express comes to town with a hip imprimatur and some admiring reviews. But this quirky, deadpan movie moves like a rickshaw with a geriatric hauler in harness. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Pulp Fiction (1994) Malcolm Johnson With its blistering, rough-edged acting, acrid, funny dialogue, vivid, accurate feeling for Los Angeles and brilliant fracturings of time, Pulp Fiction more than lives up to its advance reputation. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Desperado (1995) Owen McNally Although expensive and shiny-looking, the movie is irritatingly fragmented into bite-size, or MTV- size, segments. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Warlock: The Armageddon (1993) Malcolm Johnson This time, no co-star of Grant's stature joins the WASPy, waspish Sands, and except for the occasional neat special effect, this sequel proves an exceedingly cheesy affair. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Aspen (1991) Malcolm Johnson With a relatively unknown cast, Hasburgh creates a watchable picture. It is not Hemingway. But the skiing and the mountains rising around Aspen give Hasburgh's story excitement and grandeur. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
The Cemetery Club (1992) Malcolm Johnson Maybe another director could have exhumed The Cemetery Club. Duke just lowers it carefully into its tomb. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Leaving Normal (1992) Malcolm Johnson When Christine Lahti is in the driver's seat, this female road saga can abruptly take off like a car that stops choking and sputtering and leaps into a breathtaking overdrive. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
A Simple Plan (1998) Malcolm Johnson Both heartbreaking and chilling, this film explores ancient themes in a contemporary, painfully familiar way. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Faraway, So Close! (1993) Malcolm Johnson It is all fairly messy, and chaotic and confusing to boot at the action-packed finale. But Wenders and his photographer, Jurgen Jurges, also communicate a compelling sense of their city of angels, Berlin. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
A Midnight Clear (1992) Malcolm Johnson He infuses A Midnight Clear with a slightly skewed, surreal quality. About the only defect in Gordon's second feature is its tendency to drag in the middle. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Life With Mikey (1993) Malcolm Johnson With Life With Mikey, there's a little bit of Christmas in June, and a potential holiday favorite for years to come. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Swimming With Sharks (1994) Malcolm Johnson Unfortunately, Spacey's no-holds-barred portrait is about the only reason to take in Huang's low-budget, writing-directing debut. The story line proceeds predictably, though often unpersuasively. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Amos & Andrew (1993) Malcolm Johnson Frye proves a remarkably inept director, with little sense of pacing farce, or creating absurd characters. EDIT
Posted Jun 8, 2018
Indecent Proposal (1993) Malcolm Johnson In some ways, this portentous little morality tale about the dangerous powers of great wealth might be taken in as an amusing evening of unintentionally campy stuff, except that it unfolds glacially at times. The performances are universally embarrassing. EDIT
Posted Jun 7, 2018
Hot Shots! Part Deux (1993) Malcolm Johnson As it charges along to its disappointingly hollow payoff, Part Deux grows increasingly violent, with a graphic in one corner of the screen toting up kills like a video game EDIT
Posted Jun 7, 2018
Guilty as Sin (1993) Malcolm Johnson It is an intriguing pictorial concept, but one that confers a bland, glassy look, rather than a dizzying effect, on Guilty as Sin. EDIT
Posted Jun 7, 2018
Radio Flyer (1992) Malcolm Johnson Too dark and upsetting for the family trade, this tale of a sadistic stepfather takes too many wrong moves to satisfy adults. EDIT
Posted Jun 7, 2018
Being Human (1994) Malcolm Johnson An ultra- whimsical reverie on love and family through the ages. Sometimes archly cute, finally deeply sentimental... EDIT
Posted Jun 7, 2018
Urban Legend (1998) Malcolm Johnson There isn't much real wit, or suspense, in this parade of slayings. EDIT
Posted Jun 7, 2018
Blame It on the Bellboy (1992) Malcolm Johnson As it bounces unmerrily along, Blame It on the Bellboy is half-intriguing, but rarely humorous. EDIT
Posted Jun 6, 2018
Stay Tuned (1992) Malcolm Johnson Peter Hyams, who has flopped in virtually every genre, despite a strong visual sensibility fleetingly in evidence here, seems devoid of comic ideas at each heavyhanded turn. EDIT
Posted Jun 6, 2018