Maclean's Magazine

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
The Way of the Gun (2000) Brian D. Johnson A grisly mix of carnage, torture, backroom surgery and painful dialogue. EDIT
Posted Jun 17, 2019
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992) Brian D. Johnson Taking no chances, the makers of the sequel have manufactured a remarkably close facsimile of the original movie -- even duplicating some of the jokes. But Home Alone 2: Lost in New York is an improved, more luxurious model. EDIT
Posted Jun 10, 2019
Pulp Fiction (1994) Brian D. Johnson What is unusual is that a director with such visual flair should be so interested in words. Tarantino offers actors the kind of dialogue -- and monologue -- usually found only in theatre. EDIT
Posted Apr 23, 2019
Women Are Like That (1938) Ann Ross There's very little amusement in all this for the movie-goer. Even Miss Francis' clothes, which as a rule are a good deal more distinguished than her stories, are tacky and unbecoming in this film. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
The Divorce of Lady X (1938) Ann Ross No directorial skill in the world could make the first ten minutes seem smooth and convincing or pretty Miss Oberon anything but an annoying pest. Once the point is made, however, the picture settles down to first-rate comedy. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
Joy of Living (1938) Ann Ross If Joy of Living doesn't seem quite as spontaneous as The Awful Truth, it's probably just because it came later in the cycle. On its own merits, it's lively entertainment. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
College Swing (1938) Ann Ross The story lightly skips a couple of hundred years, and we are right in the midst of one of those college musicals which are as completely unlike anything in college as they are exactly like each other. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
Vivacious Lady (1938) Ann Ross The cast of Vivacious Lady is considerably better than its story. In fact, the acting is so good that it almost lifts a rather farfetched bedroom farce into grade A comedy. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) Ann Ross The Adventures of Robin Hood has the fine sweep and action of the best silent days, and all the sound and splendor of the modern screen. One of the season's finest films. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
() Ann Ross It isn't a very credible account of the life of a fiction writer, and I found it easier to believe in the beautiful girl who committed suicide because he hadn't kept an appointment than in the rate at which novelist Baxter dictated his prose. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
Bulldog Drummond Strikes Back (1934) Ann Ross Ronald Colman is so authoritative in his role, and Loretta Young so handsome in hers, that it doesn't seem very important if what they do doesn't always make sense. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
The Great Flirtation (1934) Ann Ross Maybe it was the warm weather which made all these heated emotions seem oppressive. But I suspect it was just that the story was weak, and that Miss Landi, whose static beauty requires a role of fortitude rather than fireworks, was badly miscast. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
Now I'll Tell (1934) Ann Ross It presents a large gallery of unpleasant people... The picture, on the whole however, is highly interesting, thanks to the circumstantial New York background and to the firm handling of the principle role by Spencer Tracy. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
Circus Clown (1934) Ann Ross There are only a limited number of things that can happen in a circus picture... They all happen in The Circus Clown, which won't either surprise or disappoint you in any particular. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
The Thin Man (1934) Ann Ross The Thin Man is just about as good a mystery story as anyone could ask for. That is to say, it keeps you happily amused all the time it is keeping you anxiously waiting. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
Marie Antoinette (2006) Brian D. Johnson Coppola's queen incarnates excess; her royal privilege is to get lost in the superficial pleasure of the moment. And that's exactly what Marie Antoinette offers its audience. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
Stepmom (1998) Brian D. Johnson The critic feels cheated, but all around him the audience is happily weeping. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
In the Cut (2003) Brian D. Johnson [Jane Campion] brings shocking beauty to a traditionally male genre - and proves she's not just cinema's most eloquent female filmmaker, but one of its essential visionaries. EDIT
Posted Apr 1, 2019
The Door in the Floor (2004) Brian D. Johnson The female characters are either preposterous or pathetic. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Willow (1988) Gillian MacKay Willow borrows shamelessly from sources as varied as the Bible, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Wizard of Oz and even from Star Wars itself, plastering it all together in a witless, muddled pastiche. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Return to Oz (1985) Lawrence O'Toole In Return to Oz [Fairuza Balk] and [director Walter] Murch have managed the rare feat of giving a fairy tale the illusion of reality. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Three Amigos! (1986) Lawrence O'Toole The movie celebrates stupidity - and it is almost contagious. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Waste Land (2010) Brian D. Johnson [Director Lucy] Walker's documentary is an eye-opening trip to a part of the world where garbage serves as liquid currency for people who salvage dignity from degradation with intelligence and grace. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
The Nutcracker in 3D (2013) Brian D. Johnson Do not see this movie. Do not take your children to this movie. Do not be tempted by the title, or dancing visions of sugar-plum fairies. Do not put on the 3-D glasses. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Faster (2010) Brian D. Johnson It receives a passing grade. And it's not the worst movie I've seen this season. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Love & Other Drugs (2010) Brian D. Johnson Even though it's a dog's breakfast... the chemistry between Anne Hathaway and Jake Gyllenhaal, two of the most watchable movie stars on the planet, makes it a guilty treat. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Made in Dagenham (2010) Brian D. Johnson Hollywood gets a of flak for turning true stories into formula fables, but never underestimate the ability of the Brits to do the same thing. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Xanadu (1980) Lawrence O'Toole What could have possessed the people involved in Xanadu to go ahead with this utter nonsense? EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
Mannequin (1987) Pamela Young Light comedy requires a delicate touch, but in his first feature film, director Michael Gottlieb displays all the deftness of Godzilla. EDIT
Posted Mar 27, 2019
The Portrait of a Lady (1996) Brian D. Johnson The director has a brilliant eye. But she fails to get behind the eyes of her heroine. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze (1991) Brian D. Johnson Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles lI: The Secret Ooze is funnier, smarter and more entertaining than the original. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
Death Becomes Her (1992) Victor Dwyer Despite an array of impressive special effects, including a particularly inventive twist on the famous head-swivelling scene in The Exorcist, Death Becomes Her dies its own slow and painful death. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1992) Victor Dwyer As silly as its title suggests, Buffy the Vampire Slayer manages to deliver a sly message about female strength and the fragility of sexual stereotypes. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
The Lord of the Rings (1978) Lawrence O'Toole Lord of the Rings never makes that wondrous leap to the land of the imagination. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
The Wiz (1978) David Livingstone As Ross takes a final star turn against a black background and her tears fall and she lets fly a homily about home, it's easy to understand why Aunt Em wants her out of the house. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
Blow-Up (1966) Wendy Michener As usual, Antonioni's images have a seductive loveliness. No fashion photographer ever took more glamorous shots, or made London look more inviting. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
The Trip (1967) Wendy Michener Some of the camera tricks are corny, but Corman has created one of the most lyrical expressions of sexual pleasure I've seen in the movies, and it's all perfectly decent, too, thanks to prisms and projections. EDIT
Posted Mar 26, 2019
Orca (1977) Eve Drobot Ugh. EDIT
Posted Mar 25, 2019
Twins (1988) Brian D. Johnson Despite its contrived origins, Twins is a surprisingly sweet, gentle comedy that sustains its humor long after the novelty of the premise wears off. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
The Cable Guy (1996) Brian D. Johnson Sure, in the title role [Carrey] plays another in-your-face, over-the-top, wild and crazy guy. But for once he is not a lovable goof. He is a rather unsavory psychotic. And the movie itself is not pure farce: it is satire, with a disturbing edge. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
Moll Flanders (1996) Brian D. Johnson The movie takes Moll's name, but mollifies her spirit. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
Harlem Nights (1989) Brian D. Johnson Despite a flimsy script and a vain director, some of the supporting cast give spirited performances. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
Cocktail (1988) Brian D. Johnson Cocktail is a vacuous throwback to Saturday Night Fever -- without the cultural novelty. The script is spiked with some comic lines, but overproof doses of inadvertent humor kill the effect. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
Space Jam (1996) Brian D. Johnson Jordan seems dwarfed by Space Jam's high-concept shenanigans. His performance amounts to a series of one-note reaction shots. He seems to have as much talent for acting as for baseball. But at least he has something to fall back on. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
The First Wives Club (1996) Brian D. Johnson But despite the clever jabs, and even with cameo support from Ivana Trump and Gloria Steinern, the film's three stars still seem trapped by Hollywood formula-choked by the heavy-handed direction of Hugh Wilson, and a smarmy script by Robert Harling, EDIT
Posted Jan 8, 2019
First Man (2018) Brian D. Johnson First Man fulfills its mission as suspenseful thriller. That's partly because it's not simply a re-enactment of a familiar story. It's a visceral, bone-rattling ride-an experience designed with meticulous precision. EDIT
Posted Oct 18, 2018
Brüno (2009) Brian D. Johnson What's most consistently brilliant about the film is Baron Cohen's acting. He never breaks character for a second. EDIT
Posted Jan 2, 2018
Public Enemies (2009) Brian D. Johnson Yes, this is a gangster movie worth seeing, and it should be seen on the big screen. EDIT
Posted Jan 2, 2018
(500) Days of Summer (2009) Brian D. Johnson I found much to like in (500) Days of Summer, not the least of which is its emotional candour. EDIT
Posted Jan 2, 2018
The Proposal (2009) Brian D. Johnson I found myself enjoying The Proposal more than I felt I should, chuckling at the predicaments and feeling the odd unsolicited tear moisten my eyes as if on cue in the third act. EDIT
Posted Jan 2, 2018