L.A. Weekly

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
Life Support (2019) Nathaniel Bell Shot in a loose, deadpan, improvisational style by writer-director-star Clarke, the film is propped up by a strong performance from Dennehy, whose ursine presence sustains the film through its wobbly passages. EDIT
Posted Sep 19, 2019
Ali Wong: Baby Cobra (2016) Robyn Bahr Her pregnancy helps her fire missiles at the sexism of her industry. It is as refreshing as it is vital in a culture that subliminally erases women's personhood as they approach motherhood. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
Lost & Found (2017) Nathaniel Bell Some of the vignettes, such as one involving an abandoned baby and buggy, are so slight they almost slip into the ether, but all of them linger pleasantly in the mind. EDIT
Posted May 28, 2019
I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997) Hazel-Dawn Dumpert All the scary, screaming, sniggering fun continues here, aided by swell performances from Hewitt and Gellar in particular... an appearance from the always groovy Anne Heche, and the crisp, crackerjack direction of Jim Gillespie. EDIT
Posted Mar 28, 2019
Galveston (2018) Tatiana Craine [A]n uneven but arrestingly beautiful drama. EDIT
Posted Dec 26, 2018
Invisible Hands (2018) Sam Weisberg Invisible Hands lacks focus. Rather than targeting its rage at the most egregious megacorporations, calling for specific boycotts, it swipes broadly at consumerism as a whole. EDIT
Posted Nov 28, 2018
Blood Brother (2018) Craig D. Lindsey I'll be straight with you: this movie is awful. EDIT
Posted Nov 28, 2018
United Skates (2018) Alan Scherstuhl Round and round it flows - why not jump on in? EDIT
Posted Nov 28, 2018
The Mercy (2018) Alan Scherstuhl Here's a man-vs.-nature sailing story with a significant difference. Rather than a rousing testament to the human spirit, James Marsh's The Mercy examines a failure to triumph, the kind of tragedy that rarely gets blown up into a movie. EDIT
Posted Nov 28, 2018
Becoming Astrid (2018) Serena Donadoni Christensen portrays Lindgren as a born storyteller but delves into the vital time in her development when confounding expectation gave way to building her own narrative. EDIT
Posted Nov 21, 2018
Manbiki kazoku (2018) Bilge Ebiri Kore-eda eases us into this loving arrangement on the margins of society and then slowly, subtly undoes every assumption we might have made about these people. EDIT
Posted Nov 21, 2018
The Favourite (2018) Bilge Ebiri Any concern that an elegantly mounted, star-studded period piece set during the War of Spanish Succession might have diluted Greek surrealist Yorgos Lanthimos' particular brand of sadism turns out to be entirely unwarranted. EDIT
Posted Nov 21, 2018
Roma (2018) Yolanda Machado Cuarón has composed some of the most stunning shots and sequences in film history, and it would be a sin not to see this on the big screen, if possible. EDIT
Posted Nov 19, 2018
Big Sonia (2016) Chris Packham A visual reminder of time's arrow and other, more important losses. EDIT
Posted Nov 19, 2018
Family in Transition (2018) Meave Gallagher Hebrew speakers may be better able to appreciate nuances that the sometimes stilted, distracting subtitles seem to obscure. But those open, honest faces - the story they tell transcends words. EDIT
Posted Nov 15, 2018
Anchor and Hope (2017) Alan Scherstuhl Too often, viewers just have to take a movie love story's word for it that its characters actually belong together. Not so in Carlos Marques-Marcet's loose, observant Anchor and Hope. EDIT
Posted Nov 14, 2018
Jinn (2018) Serena Donadoni There's nothing preachy about Jinn, even though Nijla Mu'min's elegant debut feature is about a teenager coming to terms with her mother's newly embraced religion. EDIT
Posted Nov 14, 2018
Chef Flynn (2018) Alan Scherstuhl What sets this lively, engaging doc apart is that we see Flynn become a culinary star through the eyes of his mother. EDIT
Posted Nov 14, 2018
Mobile Homes (2017) Sam Weisberg In Vladimir de Fontenay's Mobile Homes, Imogen Poots gives a performance of such multifaceted distinction that it might be hard to believe you're watching the same actress from frame to frame. EDIT
Posted Nov 14, 2018
Under the Wire (2018) Alan Scherstuhl The film unfolds as a sort of first-person procedural, a vivid step-by-step account of a reporting trip to hell. EDIT
Posted Nov 14, 2018
Weightless (2017) Serena Donadoni Still, while his first feature may be gorgeous, the characters in this rural family drama prove so amorphous that their struggles engender detachment instead of empathy. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2018
Searching for Ingmar Bergman (2018) Alan Scherstuhl Little here will surprise cineastes but much of it will charm them. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2018
River Runs Red (2018) Alan Scherstuhl The acting is stiff, the pacing sluggish, the framing uncertain, the music an intrusive mush and the scenario schematic. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2018
El Ángel (2018) Alan Scherstuhl Ortega and Ferro portray this gorgeous sociopath as utterly disaffected, a young man turned on mostly by desires he can't quite articulate, even to other criminals. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2018
3100: Run and Become (2018) Chris Klimek A curious, thoroughly reported, handsomely shot, ultimately frustrating portrait of the event. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2018
Miss Kiet's Children (2016) Alan Scherstuhl Much like a day at elementary school, this verite wonder called Miss Kiet's Children is exhausting, heartening, raucous, tender, occasionally dull, sometimes tearful and ultimately a vital public good. EDIT
Posted Nov 6, 2018
This Is Congo (2017) Alan Scherstuhl McCabe and his editor, Alyse Ardell Spiegel, sketch out a searing abbreviated history of the country, one of several flourishes distinguishing a film that's brisk in metabolism but rich in urgent incident. EDIT
Posted Nov 6, 2018
The Grief of Others (2015) Sam Weisberg Working with deliberately limited resources, writer-director Patrick Wang revels in technical gaucherie that would hinder lesser filmmakers. EDIT
Posted Nov 6, 2018
Life and Nothing More (2017) Kristen Yoonsoo Kim It's a shame we never get to know Andrew as well as Regina... but it's even more affecting when Andrew's initially passive existence escalates due to white fear, and his mother is left to fight for his chance at life. EDIT
Posted Oct 24, 2018
On Her Shoulders (2018) Alan Scherstuhl Like its subject's life, Alexandria Bombach's On Her Shoulders is a sometimes wearying blur of formal meetings, press appearances and glad-handing encounters with well-meaning officials. EDIT
Posted Oct 24, 2018
Border (2018) Bilge Ebiri While the film does take some twists and turns - some fairly contrived - it mostly drills down and explores her emotional conundrum without drawing symbolic conclusions about the world we live in. EDIT
Posted Oct 24, 2018
A Bread Factory, Part Two: Walk with Me a While (2018) Alan Scherstuhl If Part One centered on the role of the arts in the lives of these characters and their community, Part Two finds their lives becoming art. EDIT
Posted Oct 24, 2018
A Bread Factory, Part One: For the Sake of Gold (2018) Alan Scherstuhl A sort of cinematic state-of-the-arts speech, is endlessly warm, playful and lovable, a sprawling and prankish hangout comedy with no clear precedent. EDIT
Posted Oct 24, 2018
Beautiful Boy (2018) Chuck Wilson Imperfect yet affecting. EDIT
Posted Oct 23, 2018
Charm City (2018) Daphne Howland It's a stark perspective on how money and policies have failed the city's poorest. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
The Great Buster: A Celebration (2018) Alan Scherstuhl It's a relaxed study of greatness, of exquisite physical comedy, of how'd-he-do-that stuntwork, of a vigorous cinema artist who saw new and enduring possibilities for his medium. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
An Evening With Beverly Luff Linn (2018) Abbey Bender In practice, unfortunately, the film is so intent on creating a WTF universe that the characters register as little more than crude outlines. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
The Super (2017) Rob Staeger "I was in The motherf**king Wire!" I imagine that thought was running through the head of Paul Ben-Victor as he grouched his way through The Super. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
Liyana (2017) Karen Han If the rule is "show, don't tell," then Liyana is a success. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
Wildlife (2018) Alan Scherstuhl Dano's film is shrewd and exacting, composed with rigor yet alert to the rhythms of its performers. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
Fail State (2018) Daphne Howland [A] well-paced, chock-full documentary... EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2018
Face (2002) Ella Taylor Feels like the stretched-out short student film that it is. EDIT
Posted Oct 19, 2018
Call Her Ganda (2018) Juan Barquin Call Her Ganda works best when it's focused on Laude and the case of her murder, an overwhelming showcase of empathy and persistence in the face of American racism and transmisogyny EDIT
Posted Oct 16, 2018
Stella's Last Weekend (2018) Serena Donadoni Draper captures the kind of loving openness that binds together families when the two qualities truly coexist. EDIT
Posted Oct 11, 2018
The Sentence (2018) Alan Scherstuhl Here's a true surprise in 2018: a documentary about an American injustice that will likely leave you, by its end, blubbering tears of relieved joy. EDIT
Posted Oct 10, 2018
Shine (2017) Serena Donadoni It's Zayas who anchors Shine. His gravitas shot through with mischief sets the film's tone, showing that serious-minded storytelling can still be fun. EDIT
Posted Oct 4, 2018
Living in the Future's Past (2018) Serena Donadoni The film presents arrogance as being as dangerous as greed, and it's with the soft smile of Hollywood irony that a grizzled actor reminds the audience that only you can prevent environmental disaster. EDIT
Posted Oct 4, 2018
Garry Winogrand: All Things Are Photographable (2018) Sam Weisberg Garry Winogrand: All Things Are Photographable is an elegant, tender ode to Winogrand, but it's no hagiography. EDIT
Posted Oct 3, 2018
Kook (2018) Serena Donadoni There's plenty of sun and fun, but it's Kiely's presentation of a teen finding his bliss that makes Age of Summer a disarmingly pleasant diversion. EDIT
Posted Oct 3, 2018
Matangi/Maya/M.I.A. (2018) Serena Donadoni Loveridge celebrates the mashup aesthetic that enabled the artist to find a voice, and reveals that reconciling contradictions... is key to both Arulpragasam's music and the life she's constructed with audacity and wit. EDIT
Posted Oct 3, 2018