The Playlist

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
B Violation (2020) Monica Castillo "Violation" delivers a smart and visceral examination of the rape-revenge narrative, cutting out the exploitation aspects for something that's bleakly more methodical and haunting. EDIT
Posted Jan 19, 2021
B Acasa, My Home (2020) Asher Luberto It ruminates powerfully on the meaning of freedom, positing that our only chance at control may be a place far, far away from civilization, a place where the reeds sway gently and the fish are plenty. EDIT
Posted Jan 18, 2021
D- Locked Down (2021) Rodrigo Perez "Locked Down" should have just stayed terminated in the lab, instead of rushing out like a vaccine of entertainment that cured absolutely no one of their doldrums. EDIT
Posted Jan 15, 2021
C- Outside the Wire (2021) Brian Farvour Director Mikael Håfström delivers a rote, paint-by-numbers affair that says nothing meaningful about fighting wars or the future. EDIT
Posted Jan 15, 2021
A- The Mauritanian (2021) Christian Gallichio "The Mauritanian" is an efficient procedural that condemns the Bush-era treatment of detainees more effectively than any other recent narrative film. It's an affecting, but nevertheless tragic, watch. EDIT
Posted Jan 12, 2021
C We Can Be Heroes (2020) Nicholas Laskin "Heroes" is colorful and garish and relentlessly energized; as such, it's not designed to work for anyone who wouldn't be permitted into a PG-13 movie without a guardian. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2021
C The White Tiger (2021) Robert Daniels A mostly lumbering and largely dreary satire. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2021
B- My Psychedelic Love Story (2020) Andrew Bundy The ideological questions asked are, of course, all-too relevant, but posteriorly lacking the moral shock of something like last year's Cold Case Hammarskjöld. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2020
The Blues Brothers (1980) Jason Bailey Landis' staging and camera blocking aren't always up to the task, but the performers are so electrifying, it doesn't much matter. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2020
A- News of the World (2020) Jason Bailey The myth-making, the marriage of earned emotion and natural beauty. That's what the Western does best, and "News of the World" deserves comparison with the best of them. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2020
C+ Greenland (2020) Andrew Crump "Greenland" isn't some self-insistently timely movie and it probably isn't the movie we "need" right now. But it's the movie we have, and its honest to goodness but unintended genre resonance makes it easy to embrace. EDIT
Posted Dec 19, 2020
D+ Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) Rodrigo Perez 'WW84' dreams big, but wishes it were something it's not, and that is compelling and entertaining. EDIT
Posted Dec 15, 2020
C Archenemy (2020) Mike DeAngelo Archenemy" is a fun, opalescent, multi-dimensional journey to an ultimately ho-hum destination. Genre fans, proceed with caution, and keep the expectations low. EDIT
Posted Dec 12, 2020
C Archenemy (2020) Rodrigo Perez "Archenemy" is a fun, opalescent, multi-dimensional journey to an ultimately ho-hum destination. EDIT
Posted Dec 11, 2020
C- Wild Mountain Thyme (2020) Jessica Kiang To be fair, nobody truly Irish would ever think that Guinness from a bottle is going to be the same as a pint in a pub. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2020
B- The Midnight Sky (2020) Chris Barsanti While less-is-more tends to be a smart play when trying for awards season credibility, there are times when George Clooney's latest directorial effort trips up on its own earnestness. EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2020
B Let Them All Talk (2020) Robert Daniels "Let Them All Talk" is a wistful mystery film that, in the end, finds a worthwhile story between friends. EDIT
Posted Dec 6, 2020
B Mayor (2020) Chris Barsanti A purposeful push-back against the cliches of Israel-Palestinian conflict coverage. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2020
C- The Prom (2020) Kyle Turner Even if "The Prom" has a very "for musical tweens only" vibe, its winking self-awareness would function to at least neutralize the vaguely TikTok-level cringe of its more blinkered moments. EDIT
Posted Dec 1, 2020
C+ The Croods: A New Age (2020) Asher Luberto The most enthusiasm we can muster of A New Age is that it isn't new--it's the same primitive family-friendly fare that made the original a box office sensation. EDIT
Posted Nov 25, 2020
B Leap of Faith: William Friedkin on The Exorcist (2019) Asher Luberto Friedkin commands your attention whether he is sitting in front of or behind the camera. EDIT
Posted Nov 22, 2020
A+ Collective (2019) Chris Barsanti Clear-eyed and clinical without being detached from the human cost, this is a riveting drama of catastrophic amorality told with a cold fury. EDIT
Posted Nov 22, 2020
A Wojnarowicz: F**k You F*ggot F**ker (2020) Chris Barsanti Chris Kim's skittering collage of a documentary works ground up through Wojnarowicz's art to present an experiential plunge into the raw tumult of the New York art scene. EDIT
Posted Nov 21, 2020
B+ Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (2020) Valerie Complex The characters guide the story from one plot point to another. Each character is strong and plays an intricate part of the ensemble no matter how big or how minimal the role. EDIT
Posted Nov 20, 2020
B Happiest Season (2020) Lena Wilson Self-proclaimed Grinches might even feel their hearts grow back to normal size. EDIT
Posted Nov 20, 2020
D- Run (2020) Rodrigo Perez Don't be fooled, "Run" is just another riff on the "psycho mom" trope with no emotional insights into anyone or anything. EDIT
Posted Nov 20, 2020
C Fatman (2020) Andy Crump "Fatman" is an odd duck. The film lives up to the wacky logline without taking it as far as it might've; the text is absurd, but the atmosphere's sober. EDIT
Posted Nov 17, 2020
B Freaky (2020) Rafael Motamayor "Freaky" may not revolutionize the slasher franchise the way its inspirations did, but there's no denying just how much fun this movie is. EDIT
Posted Nov 17, 2020
A- Fireball: Visitors From Darker Worlds (2020) Christian Gallichio For those willing to spend ninety-plus minutes with Herzog as he riffs on the wonders of space, "Fireball" is a heartfelt tribute to scientific exploration. EDIT
Posted Nov 17, 2020
C+ Crazy, Not Insane (2020) Chris Barsanti What keeps "Crazy, Not Insane" from cohering into a gripping narrative, despite its charming absent-minded professor of a subject, is its inability to come to grips with the question at its core. EDIT
Posted Nov 15, 2020
B Honey Bee (2018) Kevin Jagernauth An authentically lived-in and hard-won tale of survival. EDIT
Posted Nov 13, 2020
D Echo Boomers (2020) Kevin Jagernauth Told with all the depth of a long-discarded USA Today infographic left on a bench at Wall Street subway station. EDIT
Posted Nov 11, 2020
D Hillbilly Elegy (2020) Jason Bailey One of the most shameless films of the year. EDIT
Posted Nov 10, 2020
C+ Mank (2020) Jason Bailey Gorgeously crafted, but ultimately distant. EDIT
Posted Nov 6, 2020
B Let Him Go (2020) Asher Luberto The Western may headline tough guys like John Wayne and Clint Eastwood, and Costner may deliver the grittier performance. But it's Lane who saddles up for top-billing, and it's Lane who rides off into that endless, elusive horizon. EDIT
Posted Nov 5, 2020
B- Kindred (2020) Asher Luberto Generating terror on screen isn't easy in our current age of Trump headlines, but the British thriller Kindred succeeds the old fashion way: pulling from those headlines, seducing us into a clean, logical nightmare about a woman who wants an abortion. EDIT
Posted Nov 2, 2020
C Over the Moon (2020) Asher Luberto Imbuing a story like this with issues of death and trauma can be good for kids, but it makes it so much harder to find the bright side of the moon. EDIT
Posted Oct 30, 2020
B Notturno (2020) Christian Gallichio Rossi has crafted an astonishingly alluring film that lacks a firm point of view, treating each subject (including an ISIS soldier, at one point) with the same detached perspective. EDIT
Posted Oct 21, 2020
D Roald Dahl's The Witches (2020) Andy Crump Instead of a movie for children, Zemeckis' film panders to children and goes so far overboard that it winds up pandering at them. EDIT
Posted Oct 21, 2020
C Borat Subsequent Moviefilm (2020) Rodrigo Perez The unpredictable OMG what-will-happen-next factor has vanished because the audience understands the formula. EDIT
Posted Oct 21, 2020
B+ I'm Your Woman (2020) Robert Daniels "I'm Your Woman" is a stunner that will take you to unconventional places. EDIT
Posted Oct 20, 2020
C Honest Thief (2020) Asher Luberto While the [thriller] genre has turned into a graveyard, Neeson proves that he can walk among the tombstones. EDIT
Posted Oct 15, 2020
C+ Rebecca (2020) Beatrice Loayza Director Ben Wheatley plays it safe, and throws star power and sumptuous imagery our way as reason enough for his pale, uninventive iteration of the classic gothic horror. EDIT
Posted Oct 14, 2020
A Soul (2020) Jack King " 'Soul' is a mesmerizing return to form for Pixar; a veritable smorgasbord for the senses, vividly recapturing the joys hidden in life's most banal moments." EDIT
Posted Oct 14, 2020
B- The Boy from Medellín (2020) Monica Castillo An enjoyable experience that's full of catchy music, candid moments with the guarded performer, and one seriously fun show at the end of it all. EDIT
Posted Oct 13, 2020
B The Sleepwalkers (2019) Matthew St. Clair It's a somewhat chaotic look at the struggles of adolescence. EDIT
Posted Oct 13, 2020
A- Tragic Jungle (2020) Carlos Aguilar Trespassing any of these limits carries grave consequences ripe for captivating cinema in the proper hands. That's indisputably the case here. EDIT
Posted Oct 13, 2020
B+ Belushi (2020) Chris Barsanti While every addict is to some degree a cliché, those memories help make Belushi more of a person, even as he busily trashed his life and that of those around him. EDIT
Posted Oct 13, 2020
B- Evil Eye (2020) Brian Tallerico "Evil Eye" feels denser and more heartfelt than any of the other three "Blumhouse" films, even if it's a little too thin overall. EDIT
Posted Oct 13, 2020
C- Nocturne (2020) Brian Tallerico A movie that can't decide if it's a YA "Black Swan" or a YA "Suspiria"-yes, there is a big difference. EDIT
Posted Oct 13, 2020