"The Chipmunks, in the first film, were the mathematical creations of a computer; watching The Squeakquel, the fun of the first film fades away as you realize that this time around, you could just as easily say that about the script."
It's Complicated (2009)
"It's Complicated is a nice two hours of fantasy -- think of it as Avatar for Eileen Fisher customers -- but it's as predictable as it is pretty, and as totally disposable as it is temporarily distracting."
The Messenger (2009)
Old Dogs (2009)
"A slack, sagging 88 minutes still feels rushed, with what must have been scenes trimmed down to micro-blip montages, and a final scene playing out over the credits; it feels like even the people making Old Dogs wanted to be done with it."
Disney's A Christmas Carol (2009)
"The good news about A Christmas Carol, then, is that Dickens' story -- the pure power of it, the grace and gentleness, the sensibility and sentiment of it -- cannot be drowned or destroyed no matter how many technicians and dollars are thrown at it."
The Fourth Kind (2009)
"But there's a thin sheen of flop sweat on The Vampires Assistant, as if it's thinking its hoped-for sequels... it's like being on a first date and having the other party reach across the table ... and ask you if you want chicken or fish for the guests at"
The Stepfather (2009)
"A little more guts - not necessarily more gory -- could have turned The Stepfather into a real re-imagining, not just a re-heating; what we get is just another trip down memory lane that runs out of gas."
Law Abiding Citizen (2009)
"Law Abiding Citizen goes well beyond the realm of, to use a piece of legal terminology, reasonable doubt and hits the hammer until it arrives at the neighborhood of sheer ridiculousness with its tires smoking."
Up in the Air (2009)
The Invention of Lying (2009)
"While (The Invention of Lying) isn't perfect, it is certainly bold and bizarre enough to make it worth seeing as a swift, smart standout in a movie marketplace where so many comedies are gutless, brainless husks."
Whip It (2009)
"Zombieland could have been a very slack unscary horror film or a very gory unfunny comedy, but instead it snaps, bites and snarls its way across the screen with perverse pleasures and real brains under its bloody smile."
Capitalism: A Love Story (2009)
""Harassing security guards, cheap stunts, unfunny comedy moments ... all a bit too familiar, and all a bit too distracting -- and that's a pity, because when Capitalism: A Love Story is on, it's on fire.""
Jennifer's Body (2009)
"The Goods is uneven, mis-shapen, lumpy, bumpy and scattershot; it's also funny, or funny in bits, or very funny in very weird bits that almost, kind of, make up for how uneven, mis-shapen, lumpy, bumpy and scattershot it is."
Julie & Julia (2009)
500 Days of Summer (2009)
I Love You Beth Cooper (2009)
Public Enemies (2009)
"Public Enemies isn't quite a summer blockbuster -- but it's got more brains and guts than almost anything else playing out there, and stands as a fascinating movie to think about over the 4th of July."
My Sister's Keeper (2009)
The Proposal (2009)
The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 (2009)
Away We Go (2009)
"John Lennon famously said "Life is what happens when you're making other plans." Away We Go works as smartly and touchingly as it does in its finest, funniest moments when it reminds us that sometimes, making other plans is how your life happens."
The Hangover (2009)
Rudo y Cursi (2009)
17 Again (2009)
Hannah Montana: The Movie (2009)
"Hannah Montana: The Movie, like an Elvis film, is an all-American corporate product designed to please people fast and make money, an occasional treat like a soda pop or a cheeseburger ... and just as bad for kids if that's all they ever consume."
Monsters vs. Aliens (2009)
"Monsters vs. Aliens has amazing 3D, solid gags, wacky concepts and great animation; I just wish that at some point along the way someone had been as passionate about the story as they were about the spectacle."
Sunshine Cleaning (2009)
"A lot of Sunshine Cleaning is about the kindness of strangers -- relying on others to get by, gaining strength by being the person someone else leans on -- but it also knows just how strange kindness can be."
Confessions of a Shopaholic (2009)
"At the Confessions of a Shopaholic advance screening I attended, there was a fashion show before the movie sponsored by a local boutique; to me, it was like watching someone do exhibition drinking games before a screening of Leaving Las Vegas."
"One of the best, biggest mind-blowing experiences you're likely to have in the theater this year -- and normally I hate dead superlatives like 'mind-blowing,' but it's the only sincere phrase I can think of here."
Bride Wars (2009)
"As Hathaway and Hudson plan their perfect days and plot to destroy each other, like a gown-clad version of one of those old Mad magazine Spy vs. Spy comics, Bride Wars pauses to ask the very important question of what happens when you focus on your weddin"
Bedtime Stories (2008)
"Bedtime Stories tries to be charming and whimsical, but while charm and whimsy, like love, can be helped by great sums of money, charm and whimsy, like love, cannot be created by great sums of money."
"The Day The Earth Stood Still's original version aspired to blow our collective minds and inspire our hearts; this new remake settles for making our eyes pop out, with a slight hope our jaws will go slack from the spectacle."
Cadillac Records (2008)
Four Christmases (2008)
"Vaughn may, in fact, be the best possible representative of our over-caffeinated age -- rambling, reckless, selfish and yet still somehow awesome -- and he's what makes Four Christmases as barely watchable as it is."
Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
"The singing, dancing, live-your-dreams plot of High School Musical 3 may be even more retro than the '80s dance moves Ortega rips off, but then again, it's not retro if you weren't around for it the first time."
The Secret Life of Bees (2008)
"If you want to take your teen daughters to a movie and then talk -- really talk -- about it afterward, about race, the past, pain, sorrow, redemption and hope, The Secret Life of Bees has a lot more to offer than you might think."
Eagle Eye (2008)
"Eagle Eye isn't horrible, but it does make sure the audience is bruised, buffeted and battered with rock-'em, sock-'em action in a deliberate attempt to shake logical questions about the plot out of their heads."
Ghost Town (2008)