The Herald (Ireland)

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
What Richard Did (2012) George Byrne In lesser hands, What Richard Did could have been a judgmental mess. Instead, it's a measured human drama set in a Dublin rarely seen on screen. EDIT
Posted Apr 30, 2020
3/5 Steve McQueen: The Man & Le Mans (2015) Pat Stacey The race sequences, shot with car-mounted cameras, are dazzling, but otherwise it's a bore. Mind you, the documentary's suggestion that McQueen stuck to safe fare like The Getaway and The Towering Inferno thereafter is wrong. EDIT
Posted Mar 19, 2020
1/5 I Am Patrick: The Patron Saint of Ireland (2020) Pat Stacey I Am Patrick, written and directed by Jarrod Anderson, is just crushingly dull and lifeless. The aerial drone shots of the Irish landscape look great, but aerial drone shots of anywhere look great. EDIT
Posted Mar 16, 2020
1/5 The Turning (2020) Chris Wasser Such an odd, odd film. EDIT
Posted Jan 27, 2020
5/5 The Personal History of David Copperfield (2019) Chris Wasser If you've read the novel, it's a glorious adaptation. If you haven't, it's still the first perfect comedy of 2020. EDIT
Posted Jan 27, 2020
4/5 Just Mercy (2019) Chris Wasser Eventually, Just Mercy finds its rhythm, utilising the talent of its leading men and women and the incredible details of the true story from which it takes its cue, to deliver something that is both moving and engaging. EDIT
Posted Jan 19, 2020
5/5 1917 (2019) Chris Wasser An astonishing achievement in filmmaking, this isn't just another week at the pictures - this is, indeed, one of the greatest war films ever made. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2020
5/5 Uncut Gems (2019) Chris Wasser A fabulous, uncompromising piece of cinema. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2020
4/5 Jojo Rabbit (2019) Chris Wasser A strange yet wonderful little film. EDIT
Posted Jan 7, 2020
4/5 Little Women (2019) Chris Wasser A sweet, charming and affectionate film that delights and devastates in equal measure. EDIT
Posted Dec 27, 2019
1/5 Cats (2019) Chris Wasser Every now and then a film comes along that requires a level of strength, courage and, indeed, patience, the likes of which I am simply unequipped for. EDIT
Posted Dec 23, 2019
A Christmas Carol (2018) Darragh McManus A Christmas Carol looks gorgeous but is too stilted, too mannered, too self-aware and, ultimately, too slow. Bah, humbug. EDIT
Posted Dec 23, 2019
2/5 Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) Chris Wasser The ending makes no sense. It is, I'm sorry to say, an outrageously dull watch, a monumental disappointment, and a flimsy finale to the Skywalker Saga. EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2019
() Pat Stacey Kevin Brannigan's fabulous, funny documentary In League with Gaddafi told a strange story of mad dogs and Irishmen going out in the Libyan midday sun. EDIT
Posted Dec 19, 2019
4/5 Elizabeth is Missing (2019) Pat Stacey What really matters here is [Glenda] Jackson. She's sensational, conveying the dreadful sadness, anger, confusion and fear of a woman who sees her memory, her very self, slipping uncontrollably from her grasp and sliding into the darkness. EDIT
Posted Dec 11, 2019
4/5 Honey Boy (2019) Chris Wasser It helps that there is both heart and lightness in their story, and though it may well have its flaws, Honey Boy remains one of the year's warmest, cinematic oddities. EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2019
2/5 The Last Right (2019) Chris Wasser [I]t's so frustrating to see The Last Right aim so spectacularly low in its execution, resulting in a film that is annoyingly broad and surprisingly lazy. EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2019
1/5 Charlie's Angels (2019) Chris Wasser It's an incompetent mess, basically, and I can't quite believe it exists. EDIT
Posted Dec 1, 2019
3/5 Last Christmas (2019) Chris Wasser It's a fascinating mishap of a display, but one that held my attention in ways that better films haven't this year. In a word? Grand. EDIT
Posted Nov 18, 2019
3/5 The Night Before (2015) Chris Wasser This is the kind of movie where no amount of alcohol or class A narcotics can break our protagonists down. They just keep on rockin' hard - sometimes, with Miley Cyrus. It's kinda hilarious. EDIT
Posted Nov 5, 2019
2/5 The Addams Family (2019) Chris Wasser It's just a witless selection of sight gags, creaky one-liners, rickety morals and dated pop culture references, thrown together with minimum regard for the source material. Get it out of my sight, please. EDIT
Posted Oct 28, 2019
5/5 The Last Black Man in San Francisco (2019) Chris Wasser Brilliantly written, scored, acted, photographed and edited, TLBINSF also signals the arrival of a gifted and vibrant young director, and I cannot wait to see what he does next. EDIT
Posted Oct 28, 2019
1/5 Dark Lies the Island (2019) Chris Wasser Cheap, incoherent and sorely lacking in structure and sense, Ian Fitzgibbon and Kevin Barry's film is exactly the kind of oddball dramedy that this country used to be famous for. But we've moved on. We know better now. Down with this sort of thing. EDIT
Posted Oct 20, 2019
3/5 El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie (2019) Pat Stacey While it's great to be back in the company of Aaron Paul, I'm not so sure you'd be missing out on a lot if you skipped El Camino. Viewers who know Breaking Bad inside out can probably figure out Jesse's ultimate geographical destination. EDIT
Posted Oct 15, 2019
4/5 A Bump Along The Way (2019) Chris Wasser A Bump Along the Way transcends its ordinary, soap-opera set-up to deliver something that is both beautiful and heartbreaking. EDIT
Posted Oct 13, 2019
5/5 Joker (2019) Chris Wasser It's a piece of art; a dark, devastating yet mesmerising offering, in which Phoenix - whose magnetic and eerily graceful Joker hobbles and dances his way from mentally unstable loser to despicable murderer - gives the performance of a lifetime. EDIT
Posted Oct 4, 2019
3/5 Judy (2019) Chris Wasser Goold's film - though capably performed, and reasonably well assembled - isn't nearly as good, or as insightful, as it might have been, and you come away with more questions than you had going in. EDIT
Posted Oct 4, 2019
Ad Astra (2019) Chris Wasser Ad Astra - an arty, textured space epic, with a brain, and a heart - has more in common with say, Interstellar, than it does with Armageddon. EDIT
Posted Sep 22, 2019
The Farewell (2019) Chris Wasser Armed with a tender, naturalistic screenplay and a charming, committed ensemble, The Farewell is a wonderfully acted family drama, and a note-perfect one, at that. Lovely stuff, altogether. EDIT
Posted Sep 22, 2019
1/5 The Kitchen (2019) Chris Wasser Great cast, awful film. EDIT
Posted Sep 22, 2019
3/5 Extra Ordinary (2019) Chris Wasser The extraordinary thing about Extra Ordinary - and believe me, there are a lot of extraordinary things about this homegrown, supernatural comedy - is that it is just as bonkers on screen as it is on paper. EDIT
Posted Sep 15, 2019
3/5 Untouchable (2019) Pat Stacey Untouchable is compelling but uneven and imperfect; a welcome first strike, but no more than that. EDIT
Posted Sep 3, 2019
2/5 () Pat Stacey It's a short documentary, running just 40 minutes. Alas, it's also short on rigour and bite. EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2019
Deadwood: The Movie (2019) Pat Stacey Ironically, for a series in which so many the characters were motivated by selfishness, ambition, greed or unadulterated wickedness, this was a surprisingly warm, almost sentimental finale. EDIT
Posted Jun 7, 2019
3/5 Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile (2019) Chris Wasser We should be thankful for Efron, whose unsettling performance as a man who seemed to genuinely believe his own lies, leaves a mark. It's an extraordinary turn in an ordinary film. EDIT
Posted May 3, 2019
3/5 Shazam! (2019) Chris Wasser Shazam! gets a little greedy towards the end, and it could probably stand to lose at least 20 minutes from its noisy finale. But hey, it gets the job done. It might just kick-start a new franchise. It's a bit of a hoot. I didn't see that coming. EDIT
Posted Apr 5, 2019
4/5 Cold Pursuit (2019) Chris Wasser A witty, smart and imaginative display, Cold Pursuit digs a hell of a lot deeper than it needs to. The closer our man in the winter coat gets to the Viking, the more this story opens up into some weird and deliciously dark places. EDIT
Posted Feb 22, 2019
4/5 Instant Family (2018) Chris Wasser It's a very well-acted display, and you know something else? It's far better than we had any right to expect. A feel-good movie for everyone? Oh, go on, then. EDIT
Posted Feb 15, 2019
Destroyer (2018) Chris Wasser It all hangs on a career-best performance from a committed and frighteningly convincing Kidman. That woman is in the form of her life at the minute. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2019
5/5 Springsteen on Broadway (2018) Pat Stacey Stripping the songs back to their basics - only a voice and an instrument - lets the lyrics breathe, bringing out their beauty and aching poignancy. EDIT
Posted Dec 17, 2018
5/5 Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) Chris Wasser The whole thing is a zippy, frenetic and surprisingly meta commentary on the comic-book industry - but it also has a heart, a fabulous voice cast, and comes equipped with some of the sharpest punchlines of the year. EDIT
Posted Dec 13, 2018
Sorry to Bother You (2018) Chris Wasser What we're left with is a bizarre, angry and surprisingly disorganised film that prioritises themes over storytelling. Pity. EDIT
Posted Dec 7, 2018
3/5 Disobedience (2017) Chris Wasser Disobedience is a bit too fond of itself, and isn't nearly as smart as it thinks it is. It's hard work, basically. Weisz is strong here, as is Nivola. But Rachel McAdams is sorely miscast as Esti, and her British accent is all over the place. EDIT
Posted Nov 30, 2018
The Girl in the Spider's Web (2018) Chris Wasser A brilliant Claire Foy is at the top of her game here, even if the rest of the film isn't. EDIT
Posted Nov 26, 2018
2/5 Dr. Seuss' The Grinch (2018) Chris Wasser Underwhelming, unimaginative and uninspired, this cold and careless adaptation is severely lacking in the zingers department. EDIT
Posted Nov 12, 2018
4/5 Overlord (2018) Chris Wasser Yes, Overlord is outrageous, violent, gory, absurd, upsetting and all the rest of it. It probably shouldn't work quite as well as it does. EDIT
Posted Nov 12, 2018
4/5 Katie (2018) Chris Wasser It's a beautiful documentary, basically, and Katie Taylor comes out of it looking very well, indeed. It's a bit of a knockout. EDIT
Posted Oct 29, 2018
4/5 The Lonely Battle of Thomas Reid (2017) Chris Wasser With The Lonely Battle of Thomas Reid, Irish director Feargal Ward has crafted one of the most unique and, perhaps, indefinable pieces of cinema this year. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
3/5 Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween (2018) Chris Wasser Goosebumps 2 is like something you'd see on Nickelodeon around this time of year - glossy, spooky, well-acted, and just about entertaining enough for a lazy Sunday afternoon. EDIT
Posted Oct 19, 2018
2/5 Johnny English Strikes Again (2018) Chris Wasser The jokes are signposted from a mile away. The ham-fisted one-liners are as old as time itself. It is, I'm sorry to say, a lazy, predictable and oddly lifeless affair - and an awful waste of a good cast. EDIT
Posted Oct 5, 2018