Sunday Independent (Ireland)

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
4/5 Girl (2018) Hilary A White Polster is quite astounding for every second he is on screen here. EDIT
Posted Mar 18, 2019
2/5 What Men Want (2019) Aine O'Connor The humour is raunchy slapstick that never feels clever and is rarely funny. It feels like a waste of an idea, especially in a climate when it could have been much more. EDIT
Posted Mar 18, 2019
2/5 Under the Silver Lake (2018) Hilary A White Mitchell's self-indulgence at the typewriter is this otherwise curious project's undoing. EDIT
Posted Mar 18, 2019
1/5 Serenity (2019) Hilary A White With all of this foolishness going on...Serenity is a real stinker. There are lines of dialogue here that beggar belief, they are so lame. EDIT
Posted Mar 18, 2019
4/5 Captain Marvel (2019) Aine O'Connor Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck co-write and direct this fun and funny, clever, diversity-embracing episode. Captain Marvel enjoys her powers, Larson brings warmth to the ass-whooping. EDIT
Posted Mar 11, 2019
4/5 Border (2018) Hilary A White Ugly and twisted though some of it is, there is something bold, confident and wholly compelling about this Cannes-winning blizzard of odd that deserves praise and attention. EDIT
Posted Mar 11, 2019
4/5 The Kindergarten Teacher (2018) Aine O'Connor This is more than just middle-aged angst, this is a woman unravelling, a complex mix of dissatisfaction and projection, failed boundaries and obsession that loosen her grip on reality. EDIT
Posted Mar 11, 2019
3/5 Ben Is Back (2018) Hilary A White Peter Hedges...writes and directs this family drama with mixed results, its sturdy and observant opening half giving way to tail-chasing. EDIT
Posted Mar 11, 2019
5/5 Everybody Knows (2018) Aine O'Connor The story is good but there are no huge surprises, the devil however is in the detail -- and the characters, observations and performances make this film shine. EDIT
Posted Mar 11, 2019
4/5 Fighting With My Family (2019) Hilary A White This jewel finds a rare balance between the silliness of the "sport" (and the characters it attracts), a feel-good underdog yarn and some big-hearted sentiment. EDIT
Posted Mar 4, 2019
2/5 The Aftermath (2019) Hilary A White More problematic is the inert chemistry between Knightley and Skarsgard, the latter particularly lacking the requisite vulnerability given what his character has supposedly been through. EDIT
Posted Mar 4, 2019
4/5 The Hole in the Ground (2019) Aine O'Connor It's not groundbreaking and will appeal to horror fans mostly, but Kerslake, and the excellent Quinn Markey, give it a dramatic centre. EDIT
Posted Mar 4, 2019
4/5 What They Had (2018) Hilary A White The three-way excellence of Forster, Swank and Shannon is the throbbing, tumultuous heart of Chomko's debut. Top-notch dialogue, earthy characterisation, a rich score...and an authentic angle on a weighty theme do the rest. EDIT
Posted Mar 4, 2019
5/5 Capernaum (2018) Hilary A White Feel-good fare it most certainly is not -- but as an example of cinema's power to face uncomfortable real-life truths, look no further. EDIT
Posted Feb 25, 2019
3/5 On the Basis of Sex (2018) Aine O'Connor It's solid and good, it's just not excellent. EDIT
Posted Feb 25, 2019
4/5 Cold Pursuit (2019) Aine O'Connor It's a violence revenge film that would joke about how its tongue got so firmly in its cheek. EDIT
Posted Feb 25, 2019
3/5 The Kid Who Would Be King (2019) Aine O'Connor It feels like an old school kids' adventure film, the characters are a bit bland, there is no great sense of peril and it is a little earnest, but it's fun and light and not a bad midterm outing. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2019
3/5 Happy Death Day 2U (2019) Hilary A White Christopher Landon's sequel is not guilty of lacking gusto, guffaws, or a spirited and comically spry leading lady...It's just that it feels like we were through all this 18 months ago with the much better original. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2019
4/5 Instant Family (2018) Hilary A White Lumps form in the throat and attention is held as Anders treats the issue with the dignity it deserves, even if the odd lashing of mawkishness gets through. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2019
4/5 A Private War (2018) Hilary A White Between the eye-patch, American drawl and chain-smoking rakishness, Colvin is a real-life gun-slinger who befits a big-screen portrait. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2019
4/5 The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part (2019) Aine O'Connor Inevitably it doesn't have the innovation factor, it can feel like one massive product placement and it is possibly a little too pleased with itself, but that is nitpicking. This will delight lots of people. EDIT
Posted Feb 11, 2019
3/5 Alita: Battle Angel (2019) Hilary A White The CGI-heavy action is super slick, but at the expense of storytelling, coherence and soul. EDIT
Posted Feb 11, 2019
5/5 If Beale Street Could Talk (2018) Aine O'Connor Moonlight was always going to be a hard act to follow, but Barry Jenkins has done it, delivering a warm, exquisite and heartbreaking movie EDIT
Posted Feb 11, 2019
3/5 Boy Erased (2018) Hilary A White [Boy Erased] is efficiently crafted film drama featuring a robust array of acting turns, even in periphery roles beyond the Hedges-Crowe-Kidman-Edgerton core. EDIT
Posted Feb 11, 2019
5/5 All Is True (2018) Aine O'Connor It is more drama, even pot boiler, than worthy biopic which angers some but makes it broadly accessible. EDIT
Posted Feb 11, 2019
4/5 How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) Aine O'Connor Growing up can feel bittersweet but is ultimately nothing to fear and this beautiful animation gathers a starry cast to make that point in what is a spectacular sequel and finale. EDIT
Posted Feb 4, 2019
3/5 Burning (2018) Aine O'Connor It is interesting and it looks good but it is not involving enough to sustain its 148-minute run time and despite its unusual storytelling the ending proved strangely predictable. EDIT
Posted Feb 4, 2019
4/5 Green Book (2018) Hilary A White A portly Mortensen just about shaves Ali with a transformative performance but they make a nifty double act regardless. EDIT
Posted Feb 4, 2019
3/5 Escape Room (2019) Hilary A White The entertainment to be had watching people younger and prettier than yourself being tormented on the big screen will never tire. EDIT
Posted Feb 4, 2019
5/5 Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) Aine O'Connor Getting audiences to side with an essentially unlikeable and morally dubious character is no mean feat, but when it works it really works and that is the power of Can You Ever Forgive Me? EDIT
Posted Feb 4, 2019
3/5 Second Act (2018) Hilary A White Second Act has a more surprising plot strand that gives the entire thing backbone. Yes, it has its share of cringe and cheesy dialogue, but for the most part this really is perfectly serviceable fare for a distracting January evening out. EDIT
Posted Jan 22, 2019
4/5 Monsters and Men (2018) Aine O'Connor The plot evolves through the three stories but despite the subject it focuses less on outrage and more on the moral aspects of doing the right thing. I loved it. EDIT
Posted Jan 22, 2019
4/5 Beautiful Boy (2018) Aine O'Connor The performances are really good, Carell especially so. Stories of addiction are necessarily cyclical so the father's emotional arc around his son's addiction is pivotal. EDIT
Posted Jan 22, 2019
3/5 Mary Queen of Scots (2018) Aine O'Connor The performances are great, Saoirse really owns it. There is perhaps too much in the story, but for me it worked. EDIT
Posted Jan 22, 2019
1/5 Glass (2019) Hilary A White Misplaced attempts at humour fall flat. Bizarre characters make bizarre decisions and yet we're asked to believe this is a superhero tale firmly grounded in reality. Willis and Jackson look bored, while McAvoy pushes the very limits of hamminess. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2019
4/5 The Front Runner (2018) Hilary A White [An] intelligent, thought-provoking political drama. Underpinning it all is classy filmmaking from Jason Reitman...who gets a fine ensemble cast moving to the same beat. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2019
2/5 The Upside (2018) Aine O'Connor The leads are good and good together. But despite a long run time, other issues are not developed in what is very much a remake and not a reworking. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2019
4/5 Stan & Ollie (2018) Hilary A White Coogan arguably does his finest acting work to date, while Reilly, heavily made up with extra poundage, locates a particular twinkle in the eye that will be instantly recognisable to fans. A masterful double-act in its own right. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2019
5/5 RBG (2018) Aine O'Connor [RBG] has been instrumental in changing so much of what we now take for granted; this insight into the woman behind the law is utterly charming. EDIT
Posted Jan 7, 2019
3/5 Colette (2018) Aine O'Connor Although the film takes too long to tell a thin enough part of the story, their complex marriage and Colette's sexuality are played really well. There's a light touch to the whole thing that works to make this enjoyable and engaging viewing. EDIT
Posted Jan 7, 2019
4/5 Welcome to Marwen (2018) Hilary A White Hums with an affectionate absurdity. Carell once again proves a buoyant and dexterous leading man. EDIT
Posted Jan 2, 2019
5/5 The Favourite (2018) Aine O'Connor Clever, beautiful, fantastically acted, saucy, dark and really funny, it's an absolute gem. EDIT
Posted Jan 2, 2019
3/5 Bumblebee (2018) Hilary A White Definitely the most watchable Transformers outing by a mile, then, but that is not saying a whole lot. EDIT
Posted Dec 28, 2018
3/5 Mary Poppins Returns (2018) Aine O'Connor The plot is very thin for the 140min run time but it's sweet and there are lots of great cameos. EDIT
Posted Dec 28, 2018
2/5 Belly of the Whale (2010) Hilary A White It is perplexing to see the release of lacklustre fare such as this dull, uninspired, and incomplete caper that does no one any favours, not least debutant director Morgan Bushe nor otherwise fine actors such as Smiley and Shortt. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2018
4/5 Sorry to Bother You (2018) Hilary A White Visually and tonally, Sorry To Bother You is a one-off, and hopefully heralds the arrival of an unorthodox new talent. The relentless fizz of absurdism might be too much for some palates, however. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2018
4/5 White Boy Rick (2018) Aine O'Connor It is a bit long and the pacing is off in places but the characters are realistic and the performances really good. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2018
5/5 Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) Hilary A White Neither a spin-off nor a shameless jumping-off-point to some franchise assault, this is that rarest of things - a replete, self-contained Marvel film that dazzles with wit, ingenuity and heart. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2018
5/5 The Old Man & the Gun (2018) Hilary A White Hollywood rarely does curtain calls this elegant. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2018
4/5 Assassination Nation (2018) Aine O'Connor There is an awful lot going on, it doesn't all work, but overall this is something that doesn't just have great style, it has real substance. EDIT
Posted Nov 26, 2018