Showbiz 411

Showbiz 411 is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer® when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Leah Sydney, Roger Friedman
Rating Title/Year Author
Selma (2014) Roger Friedman There's a lump in your throat at the of "Selma," a movie that wisely takes a a snapshot of King's life from the moment he wins the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 through the Selma march in 1965. EDIT
Posted Jun 20, 2021
Cruella (2021) Roger Friedman The whole effect is over the top and satisfyingly wacky. Poor Estella, she's the Catwoman of the Disney universe. And she's not done, not by a long shot. EDIT
Posted May 26, 2021
A Quiet Place Part II (2021) Roger Friedman Krasinski has another taut thriller, edited beautifully and within an inch of its life by Michael Shawver. EDIT
Posted May 19, 2021
Army Of The Dead (2021) Roger Friedman It's the opposite of Snyder's DC Comic movies for Warner Bros which always feel constricted. Here the ebullience is organic. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2021
Here Today (2021) Roger Friedman It's a throwback movie with a lot of shmaltz and many parts to recommend it starting with Billy's lovely performance and astonishingly real and poignant Tiffany Haddish. EDIT
Posted May 6, 2021
Crisis (2021) Leah Sydney CRISIS is a Seriously Remarkable Film About a Seriously Tragic Issue. EDIT
Posted Apr 6, 2021
Tina (2021) Roger Friedman We get a richer understanding of how Tina lived, what her genius was, and how, thank god, she reclaimed it. EDIT
Posted Mar 30, 2021
Another Round (2020) Roger Friedman The movie is fresh and unique and compelling, the actor is, too. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2021
The United States vs. Billie Holiday (2021) Roger Friedman Andra Day is so convincingly in the skin of the character, it's remarkable. You'd think she'd been to Julliard for acting classes, Yale Rep, and ten years in the theater. EDIT
Posted Feb 19, 2021
Judas and the Black Messiah (2021) Roger Friedman There's more at stake here than awards season. What we're seeing is the dismantling of J. Edgar Hoover, the corrupt head of the corrupt FBI who used his power to try and destroy Black people and the civil rights movement. EDIT
Posted Feb 1, 2021
Mass (2021) Roger Friedman Wanna see some acting? Like some real acting? Then you'll have sit through the uncomfortable but searing "Mass," written and directed by Fran Kranz. EDIT
Posted Jan 30, 2021
Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) (2021) Roger Friedman It's literally like a box of designer chocolates, just one tasty bite after another. EDIT
Posted Jan 29, 2021
CODA (2021) Roger Friedman "Coda" hits every right note: it's gurl power, overcoming a physical difficulty, with hints of "Pitch Perfect" and "Glee." Still, you can't not like it. EDIT
Posted Jan 29, 2021
Never Rarely Sometimes Always (2020) Roger Friedman it's an accomplishment for everyone involved. You'd almost like to see a sequel to learn what happens when they get home. Except I think we know the answer. EDIT
Posted Jan 26, 2021
Malcolm & Marie (2021) Roger Friedman "Malcolm and Marie" can be pretty much described as if Spike Lee rewrote and directed "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" but with a modern twist. EDIT
Posted Jan 22, 2021
One Night in Miami (2020) Roger Friedman Regina King has made an exceptional ensemble piece. She is really the star here because she's taken what was essentially a play performed in one room with four men, and opened it better than I remembered. EDIT
Posted Jan 15, 2021
I'm Your Woman (2020) Roger Friedman Julia Hart's "I'm Your Woman" is the best movie with the worst title of the year. I don't know what anyone was thinking about letting this very cool B movie starring Rachel Brosnahan, aka Mrs. Maisel, out into the world under this rubric. EDIT
Posted Jan 4, 2021
Soul (2020) Roger Friedman "Soul" is all about who you are, what you wanted to be, fulfilling your life's dream. Don't see it stoned, or your mind will be blown. But it's not a lot of navel gazing or very preachy. EDIT
Posted Dec 28, 2020
The Dissident (2020) Roger Friedman Fogel really peels away the veneer around Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's murder at the Saudi embassy in Turkey on October 2, 2018. EDIT
Posted Dec 25, 2020
Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) Roger Friedman "WW84" is laborious, preachy, and long. Clocking in at two and a half hours it made me think how everyone wants to see the long version of "Justice League." I'd like to see the short version of this movie. EDIT
Posted Dec 23, 2020
Minari (2020) Roger Friedman This about as American a story as you can imagine, and Chung - who wrote the screenplay - deftly bypasses cliches and still recalls all the great, tough films in this category from "The Grapes of Wrath" to "Days of Heaven." EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2020
32 Weeks (2020) Leah Sydney 32 Weeks is a complex indie thriller that will keep you guessing and mess with your mind. This twisty film will stick with you long after the shocking conclusion! EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2020
Fatale (2020) Leah Sydney FATALE directed by Deon Taylor, is a terrific twisty, scary slasher/mystery ride. A guilty thriller pleasure! EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2020
The Midnight Sky (2020) Roger Friedman Serious space movies really don't work. "The Martian" was a rare exception. After "Ad Astra," everyone should have just stopped. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2020
The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart (2020) Roger Friedman Marshall tells a complicated story very well, delineating the subsidiary rise and fall of the Gibbs' younger brother, Andy, who skyrocketed to fame and died young. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2020
Let Them All Talk (2020) Roger Friedman Soderbergh, very slyly, has pulled off a quite triumph. Streep has the showier part, a kind of Lear unraveling before our eyes, charming and dangerous. It's one of her best performances, apples and oranges to "The Prom." EDIT
Posted Dec 3, 2020
The Prom (2020) Roger Friedman Broadway enthusiasts will love the lyrics to the opening song, "It's Not About Me," because of course, it IS all about them. EDIT
Posted Dec 1, 2020
The Godfather, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone (1990) Roger Friedman Now that the plot has been resolved, you can sort of calm down and enjoy other aspects of the film. Al Pacino is just stunning EDIT
Posted Dec 1, 2020
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom (2020) Roger Friedman Wolfe and Santiago-Hudson have made a powerful, moving film experience that you'll want to watch again and again. EDIT
Posted Nov 20, 2020
Mank (2020) Roger Friedman The movie is expertly and smartly directed by Fincher, with gorgeous cinematography from Erik Messerschmidt. For film fans, cinephiles, and so on, this saga is like catnip. For the uninitiated, however, I don't know how much of "Mank" will resonate. EDIT
Posted Nov 13, 2020
Pieces of a Woman (2020) Roger Friedman If you can make it past the child-birthing sequence - and trust me, it's hard - there's a movie in the clearing. I'm not sure if it's a good movie, but it has intelligent performances EDIT
Posted Nov 13, 2020
Fatman (2020) Roger Friedman You can tell there wasn't much budget. Everything looks cheap. The so-called "elves" themselves verge on a racist joke. EDIT
Posted Nov 11, 2020
Wolfwalkers (2020) Leah Sydney Apple TV Throws Its Hat in the Oscar Animation Category with the glorious and original "Wolfwalkers" EDIT
Posted Nov 5, 2020
Meeting the Beatles in India (2020) Roger Friedman What sets it apart if that it's not sanctioned by the Beatles or their estates or Apple Records. EDIT
Posted Nov 2, 2020
Time (2020) Roger Friedman Somehow through some act of magic and determination, Fox Rich simply decided to keep her family in one piece while trying to get her husband released from prison EDIT
Posted Oct 31, 2020
French Exit (2020) Roger Friedman Pfeiffer's performance is so unexpected in a comedy termed "surreal" and edgy that begins in question and blossoms into something unique and memorable. EDIT
Posted Oct 21, 2020
Borat Subsequent Moviefilm (2020) Roger Friedman Borat Subsequent Moviefilm sounds like a lot of work. It isn't. At the heart of all this is goofy fun, gut laughs, and a lot of silliness. EDIT
Posted Oct 21, 2020
The Trial of the Chicago 7 (2020) Roger Friedman This movie should be seen by everyone before the election just to remind us of the dangers of an imperialistic president who thinks he's above the law. EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
Harry Chapin: When in Doubt, Do Something (2020) Roger Friedman Harry Chapin was not just a singer with many hits like Taxi and Cat's Cradle, story songs. He was also a political activist. EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
Nomadland (2020) Roger Friedman Chloe Zhao's Nomadland is truly a work of art, a beautiful movie that restores your faith in film and life EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
Rifkin's Festival (2020) Roger Friedman Woody Allen can still make a trenchant, absurd, fantastically funny comedy that is on its face improbable but altogether winning. EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
The Father (2020) Roger Friedman Just as in The Two Popes, last year, Sir Anthony delivers a master class in acting. You can't take your eyes off of him. EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
On the Rocks (2020) Roger Friedman What is going on here? Father and daughter bonding? It's all very vague. And creepy, since Murray and Jones act more like a couple than she does with Wayans. EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
A Rainy Day in New York (2019) Roger Friedman Rainy Day is a romantic movie with a happy ending and no end of sly fun. EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
Dog Years (2017) Roger Friedman Rifkin has made a very clever turn for Reynolds- whom he obviously adores- in Dog Years. EDIT
Posted Oct 12, 2020
Stuntwomen: The Untold Hollywood Story (2020) Leah Sydney "Stuntwomen" in an entertaining, fun and clever way, shows the women behind the Stars whose contributions to TV and Film have too long been ignored. EDIT
Posted Sep 24, 2020
Mulan (2020) Leah Sydney Mulan lacks the warmth, true inspiration , emotional connection and poignancy a filmgoer should expect from Disney. EDIT
Posted Sep 4, 2020
The One and Only Ivan (2020) Leah Sydney 'The One And Only Ivan' hearkens back to the Disney Classics of yore. Diane Warren's breathtaking song 'Free' is destined to become a classic. Clever and poignant, 'Ivan' is a winning tale of the preciousness and sanctity of animals. EDIT
Posted Aug 18, 2020
Giuseppe Makes a Movie (2014) Leah Sydney Adam Rifkin's poignant and hilarious documentary "Giuseppe Makes A Movie" follows the quixotic Guiseppe Andrews and his merry band of misfits as they try to make art with no resources but plenty of heart. Do not miss! EDIT
Posted Aug 13, 2020
Dog Years (2017) Leah Sydney Adam Rifkin's Last Movie Star is a gem of a film. A cinematic tribute to Burt Reynolds with love, caustic humor and respect. Not be be missed. EDIT
Posted Aug 11, 2020