3AW

3AW is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Jim Schembri
Rating Title/Year Author
3/5 King of Thieves (2018) Jim Schembri Directed with a love for criminal procedural detail by James Marsh, the film has its humourous moments, but this...is essentially a hard drama about hard men who remain hard no matter how old they are. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
1/5 Greta (2018) Jim Schembri [A] tepid, uniquely stupid thriller...Think of a lobotomised Single White Female and you'll know what you're in for. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
3.5/5 A Dog's Way Home (2019) Jim Schembri What sets A Dog's Way Home above the pack of most animal movies is that while the film is perfectly suitable for children, it's actually an adult movie...the emotional highs of the film have been designed more for grown-ups [than kids}. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
3/5 Pimped (2018) Jim Schembri Slick, ripper little low-budget thriller in which a very nasty sex "game" played by party-loving womaniser Lewis (Benedict Samuel) goes very wrong, leading to a lethal domino effect. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
2/5 Captain Marvel (2019) Jim Schembri Captain Marvel is an unremarkable, passable time killer...[Brie] Larson's performance is wooden...while the film's big action scenes are so lacking in imagination the screen often looks as though it's being continually doused in technicolour vomit. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
5/5 Hotel Mumbai (2018) Jim Schembri Not since 2009's Balibo has an Australian film hit us with such dramatic force, emotional power or topical urgency. [It] is not just an extraordinary, brave film, it is emblematic of the type of film the Australian film industry should be making more of. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
3/5 Arctic (2018) Jim Schembri The film does bear more than a passing resemblance to other recent survival films, perhaps reflecting the universal truth that when it comes to surviving in the wild, the elements can be as harsh as they are indifferent to the suffering of lost humans. EDIT
Posted Feb 23, 2019
4.5/5 Roma (2018) Jim Schembri Cuaron's love of long takes - demonstrated so masterfully in Children of Men & Gravity - allows you to soak in all the subtly placed detail about the lives of these people...his understated use of the camera engineers some great cinematic moments. EDIT
Posted Feb 23, 2019
4/5 Stan & Ollie (2018) Jim Schembri Both a celebration and lamentation about one of the great comedy duos of the 20th Century...one of the best films we've had so far about the dizzying highs and sobering lows of show business. EDIT
Posted Feb 23, 2019
2.5/5 If Beale Street Could Talk (2018) Jim Schembri Barry Jenkins is an unhurried director who loves to dwell on intimate scenes and there are several touching moments...The pace, however, does become somewhat cloying as the time-jumping has you thinking more about the timeline than the characters. EDIT
Posted Feb 16, 2019
3/5 Happy Death Day 2U (2019) Jim Schembri Not only will this surprisingly inventive sequel please fans of the first film - basically a slasher version of Groundhog Day - it might even win over those who weren't so keen on it. Director Chrisopher Landon brings a very cheeky vibe to this outing. EDIT
Posted Feb 16, 2019
3.5/5 At Eternity's Gate (2018) Jim Schembri With rich, convincing lead performances by Willem Dafoe and Oscar Isaac, the film breathes with a love of art and the toil it demands. Working with brilliant French cinematographer Benoit Delhomme, the film is an ever-pleasing swirl of style. EDIT
Posted Feb 16, 2019
2/5 Alita: Battle Angel (2019) Jim Schembri There's nothing visually arresting here, with much of the film looking like it was borrowed from District 9, Thor 3, Rollerball, Transformers, Blade Runner, AI and Terminator. That wouldn't have been such a big deal had the central story not been so lame. EDIT
Posted Feb 16, 2019
3.5/5 Escape Room (2019) Jim Schembri The superb, stranglehold direction of Adam Robitel draws you in early and never lets go, even after you think things have been resolved...a prime example of the economics of the horror genre. Serve the genre's fanbase and the world is yours. EDIT
Posted Feb 16, 2019
3.5/5 What Men Want (2019) Jim Schembri A gloriously over-the-top comic performance by Taraji P. Henson (Hidden Figures; Benjamin Button) is the gleaming jewel in this winning, extremely funny comedy about glass-ceiling politics, out-of-control ambition and love. EDIT
Posted Feb 16, 2019
3/5 Instant Family (2018) Jim Schembri Very likeable, truth-based comedy. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3/5 The Kid Who Would Be King (2019) Jim Schembri A strong anti-bullying theme helps spice a nifty, FX-driven kid's adventure. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3.5/5 Storm Boy (2019) Jim Schembri [This] version of Colin Thiele's 1964 book about the relationship between a pelican and the son of a beach-dwelling hermit not only compares favourably with the original, it often outdoes it, offering more story and substance. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3.5/5 Mary Queen of Scots (2018) Jim Schembri Powerhouse performances from Saoirse Ronan & Margot Robbie drive Josie Rourke's searing chamber piece about one of history's greatest catfights.The film has been Oscar-nominated for make-up, which managed the extraordinary feat of making Robbie look ugly. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
2.5/5 Glass (2019) Jim Schembri The Sixth Sense, The Visit and Split showed that Shyamalan has real talent as a director of suspense, and there are sparks of that here, yet the film strains for your attention and stumbles with a very awkward ending. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3.5/5 Free Solo (2018) Jim Schembri Those who suffer from acrophobia (fear of heights) and basophobia (fear of falling) yet enjoy having those fears pricked in the safety of a comfy cinema seat should find Free Solo enthralling...A perfect treat for the armchair adventurer. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
4/5 Green Book (2018) Jim Schembri The film has a warm, congenially progressive vibe and a wonderfully street line of humour. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
4/5 The Mule (2018) Jim Schembri The economy and efficiency of Eastwood's direction only seems to improve. The Mule moves at a breezy, unforced clip, with Eastwood effortlessly switching from personal-drama mode to action-thriller mode. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3/5 The Hate U Give (2018) Jim Schembri The film certainly can't be faulted for the courage of its convictions, though there are too many spots where the dialogue sounds like it came off a civil liberties pamphlet. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3/5 Ben Is Back (2018) Jim Schembri Despite its Hollywood gloss - it's a Julia Roberts film, after all - the film does venture into some of the grittier realities about those stricken with addiction. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3.5/5 The Front Runner (2018) Jim Schembri Forcefully directed by Jason Reitman (Up In The Air), the film is essentially an origin story accounting for the venality of today's rabid media culture, covering hot-button topics such as invasion of privacy, newsroom bias and double-standards. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3/5 The Combination Redemption (1970) Jim Schembri Replete with swearing and a generous splattering of blood, Field - best-known as the hard-faced actor from Chopper and Two Hands - does a solid job compressing a grab-bag of storylines, including a slightly superflous romance, into a cohesive crime-drama. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
2.5/5 Maria by Callas: In Her Own Words (2017) Jim Schembri While the unconventional choice to tell the Callas story through her words has a certain intimate appeal and style it, of course, cuts off other perspectives, opinions and versions of her story. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
2/5 On the Basis of Sex (2018) Jim Schembri It hurts to think how good the film could have been had Leder not presided over it with such a leaden hand. Shot as though it was a 1970s telemovie, the lengthy courtroom scenes become quite tiresome as the film lumbers towards its predictable conclusion. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3/5 Cold Pursuit (2019) Jim Schembri As with all of Neeson's latter-day action films, Cold Pursuit is an enjoyable, throwaway time-killer that should satisfy Neeson's fans until it inevitably turns up in a boxed set. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
2.5/5 Holmes & Watson (2018) Jim Schembri It's not as funny as their previous outings but the flick has enough slapstick, vomiting, poo, comic violence and general flailing about to keep fans mildly entertained. EDIT
Posted Dec 28, 2018
2.5/5 The Favourite (2018) Jim Schembri The film is largely an ornately staged, staid wordfest. It features the odd cuss word, naughty sex and some brutal behaviour, but none of the director's stylistic touches make up for the film's overall lack of tension. EDIT
Posted Dec 28, 2018
4.5/5 Eighth Grade (2018) Jim Schembri Her journey [is] handled with an honesty and unforced delicacy that imbues the film with pungent authenticity, right down to Kayla's facial blotches, imperfect teeth and her secret joy over a blossoming friendship. EDIT
Posted Dec 28, 2018
3/5 Peppermint (2018) Jim Schembri From the director of Taken comes another piece of straight-faced, high-voltage vigilante pulp, only this time with a woman in the lead. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
4/5 Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) Jim Schembri A full-on, fun adventure, all ignited by the film's rhapsodic animation, a dazzling collision of traditional comic-book style images and digital wizardry that give the film the warm feel of the pulpy medium from which the superhero genre sprang. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
4/5 Vice (2018) Jim Schembri With powerhouse acting from go-to-whoa, all pinned to Christian Bale's Oscar-worthy turn, the film is the perfect antidote to those who might be weary from all the expensive eye-candy being tossed at us and who are hungry for a movie meal with real meat. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
1/5 Cold War (2018) Jim Schembri Thunderously dull romantic drama from Paweł Pawlikowski, who won a best foreign film Oscar for 2015's Ida...it's a slog, as well as featuring characters who are hard enough to relate to without Pawlikowski's sterile direction. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
3/5 Colette (2018) Jim Schembri As the feisty embodiment of pre-feminist defiance Keira Knightly puts in a terrific, tightly wound performance as Colette. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
3/5 Bumblebee (2018) Jim Schembri Though free of the hyper-kinetic shooting style of Transformers maestro Michael Bay, the film is spiced by similarly fluid direction by Travis Knight who maintains the high visual standard of the franchise while clearly aiming at a younger demographic. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
4/5 Aquaman (2018) Jim Schembri A refreshing, fast-moving, visually inventive adventure that actually has some heart at the heart of all the epic battle scenes...though Aquaman honours superhero movie conventions it largely avoids that stale formulaic feel we're often forced to endure. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
3/5 Overlord (2018) Jim Schembri Julius Avery blends war movie with zombie horror to create a big, fun, action-splattered hybrid film that proposes how the Nazis were working on reanimating dead soldiers during the D-Day invasion. Think of it as Saving Private Ryan of the Living Dead. EDIT
Posted Dec 7, 2018
4/5 Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) Jim Schembri A moving, compelling portrait...Melissa McCarthy and director Marielle Heller have fashioned a gem of a film around a person who was anything but a gem of a person. One can feel the Oscars beckon. EDIT
Posted Dec 7, 2018
4/5 Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) Jim Schembri As much fun as Wreck It Ralph was it actually pales in comparison to the sequel, which is such a vibrant, funny, inventive, surprise-filled adventure it reminds you that Hollywood can occasionally get follow-ups right. EDIT
Posted Dec 7, 2018
2/5 Mortal Engines (2018) Jim Schembri Star Wars on Wheels. EDIT
Posted Dec 7, 2018
3/5 Dr. Seuss' The Grinch (2018) Jim Schembri This serving from Illumination (the Despicable Me people) is a handsome, by-the-numbers kids film. EDIT
Posted Nov 30, 2018
3.5/5 Lean on Pete (2017) Jim Schembri Adapted from the 2010 Willy Vlautin novel writer/director Andrew Haigh has fashioned a beautiful, lyrical adolescent drama that side-steps coming-of-age cliches to pursue an earthy story about an untethered, uncared for kid in desperate search for family. EDIT
Posted Nov 30, 2018
4/5 Creed II (2018) Jim Schembri A pensive, tough-minded, extremely well-directed drama that refuses to take easy options or cop outs. EDIT
Posted Nov 30, 2018
2/5 Boy Erased (2018) Jim Schembri The movie struggles to lift spirits. It is also hampered, it must be said, by the dull-edged earnestness of Hedges' performance, which has its moments, but not enough of them. EDIT
Posted Nov 25, 2018
4.5/5 They Shall Not Grow Old (2018) Jim Schembri The footage is so vivid it looks as though the film was shot yesterday afternoon. [Its] most powerful aspect is the humanity that now rises from these images...You see in these faces the youth, joy and fear of the men who went to the front. EDIT
Posted Nov 25, 2018
1/5 Suspiria (2018) Jim Schembri A posturing and pretentious bore...Half-way through you'll be hoping Leatherface will appear and liven things up. EDIT
Posted Nov 25, 2018