Time Out Chicago

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
How to Die in Oregon (2011) Sam Adams How to Die can be tough to watch, but when it's over, you feel privileged to have taken part. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2018
Hemingway & Gellhorn (2012) A.A. Dowd "I do not see myself as a footnote to someone else's life," Kidman says in the movie's final minutes. The preceding two and a half hours beg to differ. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2018
The Normal Heart (2014) Jessica Johnson While there are kinks in Murphy's adaptation, the raw power of Kramer's story cannot be diluted. It's a powerful memorial to the men that lost their lives and those they loved while fighting bring the AIDS epidemic to light. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2018
There's Something Wrong With Aunt Diane (2011) Sam Adams The movie offers a few plausible explanations as to what might have been wrong with Diane Schuler, but ultimately it tests her family's, and its audience's, ability to accept without understanding. EDIT
Posted Jul 2, 2018
I am Kalam (2010) Amy L. Hayden Overall, I Am Kalam is an interesting film. EDIT
Posted Oct 20, 2017
3/5 Sound City (2013) A.A. Dowd When getting into the nitty-gritty of tapes and tracks, Grohl makes a strong case for music docs directed by musicians. EDIT
Posted Dec 16, 2013
3/5 The Motel Life (2012) Sam Adams This debut film does establish a fragile mood that lingers like a morning fog. EDIT
Posted Dec 2, 2013
White Reindeer (2013) Ben Kenigsberg I's a rare Christmas movie whose uplift, such as it is, feels earned. EDIT
Posted Nov 18, 2013
3/5 4 (Chetyre) (2006) Hank Sartin Khrzhanovsky and screenwriter Vladimir Sorokin have both the grim ideas and the little sideways winks in perfect equilibrium in the brilliant first half hour of this strange film. The rest of the film is certainly memorable, if increasingly impenetrable. EDIT
Posted Nov 5, 2013
5/5 Sicko (2007) Cliff Doerksen Equal parts laugh-riot and call to arms. EDIT
Posted Aug 5, 2013
3/5 Ratatouille (2007) Ben Kenigsberg Ratatouille seems more charming in concept than in execution. Bogged down by too many climaxes, it's a little overcooked. EDIT
Posted Aug 4, 2013
District 9 (2009) Ben Kenigsberg If the basic idea is provocative, District 9 never lives up to the promise of its allegorical freight. EDIT
Posted Aug 4, 2013
5/5 Inglourious Basterds (2009) Ben Kenigsberg For all its originality, this hall of mirrors is the closest Tarantino has come to making a film with old-fashioned, movie-movie appeal. EDIT
Posted Aug 4, 2013
5/5 Knocked Up (2007) Ben Kenigsberg The movie is a decisive breakthrough for Apatow, whose comic instincts go hand in hand with an unfashionable empathy. EDIT
Posted Aug 3, 2013
3/5 Nancy, Please (2012) A.A. Dowd Nancy, Please hasn't much to offer beyond the amusing spectacle of a complacent college boy losing his cool. But that may be enough, especially for those who've sparred with archrivals of their own -- real or invented. EDIT
Posted May 23, 2013
5/5 Taxi Driver (1976) A.A. Dowd What strikes you aren't just the iconic moments, but the little ones. EDIT
Posted Apr 29, 2013
3/5 To the Wonder (2012) Ben Kenigsberg Once the shock of seeing a Sonic Drive-In in a Malick film wears off, the movie leaves little to ponder beyond the sketchily drawn romance drama at its core. EDIT
Posted Apr 19, 2013
3/5 Ginger & Rosa (2012) A.A. Dowd Whether it's memoir or personalized fiction, Ginger & Rosa displays a shrewd understanding of late adolescence-a time when every emotional slight lands like an atom bomb. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2013
2/5 The Croods (2013) A.A. Dowd The latest advances in computer animation have been applied to a truly primitive comedy-Ice Age recast with a family of nattering Neanderthals. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2013
3/5 Caesar Must Die (2012) A.A. Dowd The problem with the film, which somewhat inexplicably won the Golden Bear at Berlin last year, is that it scarcely transcends the basic novelty of its premise. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2013
3/5 Admission (2013) A.A. Dowd Thank goodness for Fey, who lends this sitcom soap a credible emotional center. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2013
5/5 Spring Breakers (2012) Ben Kenigsberg Not just a step forward. It's a vision: a fever dream of sun-dappled debauchery that doubles as a thriller-satire on the allure of excess. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2013
4/5 Barbara (2012) Ben Kenigsberg Petzold renders Communist oppression in a provocatively muted manner. EDIT
Posted Mar 10, 2013
1/5 Somebody Up There Likes Me (2012) Ben Kenigsberg There's talent here, but the goal seems to be proving that everyone involved is too cool to make an actual movie. EDIT
Posted Mar 10, 2013
4/5 No (2012) A.A. Dowd Stirring as a celebration of voter empowerment, No may also inspire pangs of wistful nostalgia. EDIT
Posted Mar 10, 2013
5/5 Diary of a Country Priest (1950) Ben Kenigsberg Diary is less a movie about the necessity of faith than what it means to be cut down in the midst of youthful idealism and intransigence, before life offers wisdom. EDIT
Posted Mar 5, 2013
3/5 Stoker (2013) A.A. Dowd You may be dazzled or exasperated by this flurry of stylistic excess. You probably won't be bored. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2013
1/5 21 and Over (2013) A.A. Dowd The real problem with 21 and Over is that it swipes most of its material from better movies. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2013
2/5 Jack the Giant Slayer (2013) Ben Kenigsberg Taking a healthy swig from Lord of the Rings' cup, this high-concept "Jack and the Beanstalk" dresses up traditionalism in expensive nothingness. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2013
B Future Weather (2012) Sam Adams Feels like the product of an explosion at the Sundance factory: a rural setting here, a wisp of mildly quirky indie rock there. EDIT
Posted Feb 23, 2013
3/5 Beautiful Creatures (2013) A.A. Dowd If we must have supernatural high-school romances, can they all be as relatively painless as Beautiful Creatures? EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2013
1/5 A Good Day to Die Hard (2013) A.A. Dowd Director John Moore, the anonymous hack at the helm, stages car chases and gun fights with messy imprecision. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2013
The King's Speech (2010) Ben Kenigsberg The King's Speech is an entertainingly crafted movie that doesn't linger too long in the mind. EDIT
Posted Feb 16, 2013
3/5 The Trouble With the Truth (2011) Keith Phipps While it never quite lives up to its lofty inspiration, particularly in an unsatisfying final act, it's engagingly written and well played by both leads. EDIT
Posted Feb 14, 2013
3/5 John Dies at the End (2012) A.A. Dowd More arch than amusing, John Dies at the End may exhaust your patience for everything-but-the-kitchen-sink "storytelling." Still, there's something endearing about its relentless barrage of gonzo happenings. EDIT
Posted Feb 9, 2013
4/5 Side Effects (2013) Ben Kenigsberg Makes for an intriguing if dispassionate fit. EDIT
Posted Feb 9, 2013
2/5 Warm Bodies (2013) A.A. Dowd Good luck ascribing a clear satirical agenda to Jonathan Levine's tonally uneven zomcom, which suffers an identity crisis nearly as severe as its protagonist's. EDIT
Posted Feb 1, 2013
2/5 West of Memphis (2012) A.A. Dowd The new film is largely a recap of the older ones, with more celebrity testimonials and fewer Metallica songs but little fresh insight into the miscarriage of justice it chronicles. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2013
1/5 A Haunted House (2013) A.A. Dowd You know a fright-flick craze is in danger of running its course when Marlon Wayans comes along to broadly, belatedly spoof it. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2013
3/5 Broken City (2013) A.A. Dowd A political thriller that's never quite as smart as you wish it were. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2013
4/5 Consuming Spirits (2012) A.A. Dowd Even if one grows impatient with the film's dovetailing tales of small-town desperation, it's hard to tire of its visual execution. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2013
2/5 Movie 43 (2013) Ben Kenigsberg Neither the Kentucky-fried turkey its unceremonious release suggests nor the kind of daring film maudit that seems destined to be reassessed decades hence. EDIT
Posted Jan 25, 2013
2/5 Gangster Squad (2013) A.A. Dowd A shallow, star-studded amalgam of every Los Angeles cops-and-crooks drama you've ever seen. EDIT
Posted Jan 10, 2013
1/5 Texas Chainsaw (2013) A.A. Dowd When making a sequel to a beloved genre classic, it's generally unwise to include clips of the masterpiece you're attempting to live up to. EDIT
Posted Jan 10, 2013
5/5 Amour (2012) A.A. Dowd The most brutally honest picture ever made about growing old and wasting away. EDIT
Posted Jan 10, 2013
4/5 Sister (2012) A.A. Dowd For fans of Ursula Meier's last movie, the strikingly offbeat domestic drama Home, this act of auteur-on-auteur emulation may feel like a comedown. Yet it's still stirring work. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2013
5/5 Zero Dark Thirty (2012) Ben Kenigsberg The decade-spanning Zero Dark Thirty comes freighted with a historical weight it bears amazingly well. EDIT
Posted Jan 9, 2013
3/5 Premium Rush (2012) A.A. Dowd Want more from a late-summer joyride than slides, wheelies and bunny hops? Get a load of Shannon, dementedly inspired, trying out an oddball accent and Richard Widmark giggle. EDIT
Posted Jan 8, 2013
4/5 The Cabin in the Woods (2011) A.A. Dowd A fiendishly clever genre Rubik's Cube that demonstrates, if nothing else, how much Fangoria fare benefits from the wicked wit of a real writer. EDIT
Posted Jan 8, 2013
4/5 Argo (2012) Ben Kenigsberg After Gone Baby Gone, The Town and now this directorial-best, Affleck is establishing himself as a major craftsman. EDIT
Posted Jan 8, 2013