South China Morning Post

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
4/5 Onward (2020) James Mottram One of the best original Pixar movies in a while, Onward is very funny but also touchingly sentimental. EDIT
Posted Feb 21, 2020
4/5 () James Mottram A sensitive and spiritual depiction of China. EDIT
Posted Feb 21, 2020
3.5/5 () James Mottram Featuring an impressive central turn from the increasingly visible Margaret Qualley, there's something marvellously old-fashioned about this tale set on the cusp of the digital age. EDIT
Posted Feb 20, 2020
3/5 The Call of the Wild (2020) James Mottram There's a lot of humour and warmth to the film ... A few gripes aside, Sanders manages to bring this classic story to a new generation. EDIT
Posted Feb 18, 2020
3/5 Sonic the Hedgehog (2020) James Mottram This is the one kids' film where obligatory chase sequences should actually be encouraged. It also benefits hugely from the presence of Jim Carrey, as Sonic's enemy Dr Robotnik. EDIT
Posted Feb 12, 2020
2/5 The Turning (2020) Richard James Havis This pedestrian ghost story plods along in a vaguely competent manner until a thoroughly muddled ending makes the whole experience pointless. EDIT
Posted Feb 10, 2020
3/5 Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) James Mottram A comic grotesque with a big dose of "ker-pow!". EDIT
Posted Feb 5, 2020
3.5/5 A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019) Richard James Havis Hanks is the film's strength, and Vogel's scenes of self-absorption and analysis narrowly avoid veering into cliché. EDIT
Posted Feb 5, 2020
3/5 Kioku ni gozaimasen (2019) James Marsh It's a well-worn comedic concept, but in the hands of Mitani's adept ensemble, Hit Me Anyone One More Time sustains the high energy and humour throughout. EDIT
Posted Jan 20, 2020
1/5 Dolittle (2020) Richard James Havis A mushy disaster of a children's movie that might even bore kids as much as adults. EDIT
Posted Jan 20, 2020
3/5 Bad Boys for Life (2020) James Mottram For once, the laughs make more of an impact than the explosions. EDIT
Posted Jan 16, 2020
4/5 Judy (2019) Richard James Havis A Golden Globe-winning performance from Renée Zellweger as the titular star avoids wallowing in despair, but still manages to convey the very real misery of the embattled entertainer. EDIT
Posted Jan 13, 2020
3/5 Underwater (2020) James Marsh Stewart makes her character physical yet vulnerable, adding a depth and clarity that simply wasn't there on the page. EDIT
Posted Jan 8, 2020
4/5 Little Women (2019) Richard James Havis Gerwig's reading of the book is bang up to date, and she gently bends the narrative to focus on the ways that women can be excluded from careers because of their gender. EDIT
Posted Jan 7, 2020
2/5 Mission Mangal (2019) James Marsh The film's tech talk is dumbed down to a laughable degree, with metaphors ranging from cooking to cricket supplanting anything approaching actual rocket science. EDIT
Posted Jan 1, 2020
2.5/5 Richard Jewell (2019) Richard James Havis An anti-media, anti-FBI diatribe that shows the biases of the US right wing. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
2.5/5 Ashfall (2019) James Marsh When the ash settles, what remains on screen is the molten wreckage of a high concept crowd-pleaser that, in its efforts to be everything for everyone, ends up delivering precious little to anyone at all. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
2.5/5 () James Marsh Abe's performance is hindered by his limited English ... Likewise, the English-speaking characters are left hobbled by some poor dialogue and mannered overexpression. EDIT
Posted Dec 26, 2019
3/5 The Gentlemen (2020) James Mottram The Gentlemen is a Ritchie film for all those who grew up on his early laddish crime capers Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch. EDIT
Posted Dec 19, 2019
2/5 Cats (2019) James Mottram Doubtless lovers of Andrew Lloyd Webber will flock to see it, but it's as messy as a cat's litter tray. EDIT
Posted Dec 18, 2019
3/5 Ip Man 4: The Finale (2019) Edmund Lee While hardly a necessary sequel, Ip Man 4 again shows how the role fits Yen in both dramatic and physical terms. EDIT
Posted Dec 18, 2019
4.5/5 Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) James Mottram By the end, as the twin suns set on cinema's greatest ever sci-fi series, it's near-impossible to hold back the tears. EDIT
Posted Dec 18, 2019
3/5 Somewhere Winter (2019) James Marsh As with 2015's Our Times and 2013's So Young, Somewhere Winter uses the nostalgic recollections of 1990s school life as a means of escaping the problems of today. EDIT
Posted Dec 10, 2019
4.5/5 Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019) James Mottram Anyone who has ever felt burning passion for another person will relate to and fall for this spine-tingling work. EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2019
4/5 Bombshell (2019) James Mottram Bombshell sets you on edge and won't let go until it concludes. The result is a timely and absorbing drama. EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2019
4.5/5 Better Days (2019) Edmund Lee The gritty reality of bullying shown in Better Days leaves a lasting impression on the audience. EDIT
Posted Dec 4, 2019
5/5 1917 (2019) James Mottram 1917 is a visceral World War I movie that is both technically masterful and emotionally devastating. It's easily the best film of Mendes' career. EDIT
Posted Nov 25, 2019
2.5/5 Special Actors (2019) James Marsh Where One Cut of the Dead was intricately assembled, Ueda's follow-up is disjointed and baggy, offering only intermittent glimpses of the wit and invention upon which he made his name. EDIT
Posted Nov 25, 2019
4.5/5 Dark Waters (2019) Richard James Havis A powerful and socially conscious drama which serves as encouragement for all those who are battling against seemingly unsurmountable forces to change society for the better. EDIT
Posted Nov 18, 2019
3/5 Frozen II (2019) James Mottram It would be unfair to call Frozen II a cynical cash-in; there's a lot of love and affection in every frame of the animation, in every note sung and every line spoken. EDIT
Posted Nov 17, 2019
2/5 The Good Liar (2019) James Mottram Condon would dearly love to deliver an adult thriller - a Hitchcockian Brief Encounter. But The Good Liar disappears into its own gaping plot holes. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2019
2.5/5 Midway (2019) James Mottram Despite the impressive CGI-led battle scenes ... Midway is strangely pedestrian. Characters and dialogue fall flat, lacking the emotional pull you might expect. EDIT
Posted Nov 6, 2019
3.5/5 Doctor Sleep (2019) James Mottram There's something hypnotic about spending another two-and-a-half hours in this world. EDIT
Posted Nov 5, 2019
3/5 Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) James Mottram Dark Fate is more like a nostalgia-blast, reshuffling all-too-familiar tropes than an impressive new direction for the franchise. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2019
3/5 The Captain (2019) Edmund Lee It should come as no surprise to disaster movie fans that the scenes of mid-air crisis in The Captain are far more captivating than those on the ground. EDIT
Posted Oct 17, 2019
3/5 Zombieland: Double Tap (2019) James Mottram Zombieland: Double Tap is light on its feet, filled with killer tunes and plenty of inventive, gratuitous slaughtering of the undead. EDIT
Posted Oct 16, 2019
3/5 Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (2019) James Mottram Ronning does his best to distract from a simple-minded script by littering the frame with computer-generated critters. It's like a visit to a riotous flower show on a particularly sunny day. EDIT
Posted Oct 15, 2019
2/5 The Addams Family (2019) Richard James Havis The gags in this film are less sardonic than those found in the original children's TV series way back in the 1960s. EDIT
Posted Oct 14, 2019
2/5 47 Meters Down: Uncaged (2019) Richard James Havis How can the girls be heard screaming underwater? How can a human outswim a shark? If [only] the director had bothered to consider such basic questions... EDIT
Posted Oct 8, 2019
2/5 Gemini Man (2019) Ben Sin It may be easier to forgive the below par special effects if everything else about Gemini Man - story, acting, action sequences - is top notch, but that's also not the case. EDIT
Posted Oct 7, 2019
2.5/5 Wo he wo de zu guo (2019) James Marsh Under the stewardship of director Chen Kaige, everything from the detonation of China's first atomic bomb to the Shenzhou-11 spacecraft landing is milked for all its patriotic glory. EDIT
Posted Oct 1, 2019
2.5/5 The Climbers (2019) Edmund Lee This account of the Chinese Mount Everest expeditions in 1960 and 1975 is a nationalistic spectacle that, curiously, often also allows personal sentiment to get in the way of the greater good. EDIT
Posted Oct 1, 2019
4/5 Knives Out (2019) James Marsh Knives Out works so well because Rian Johnson knows the clichés and tropes of this particular kind of murder mystery inside out, and understands that his audience knows them too. EDIT
Posted Sep 30, 2019
3.5/5 Destiny: The Tale of Kamakura (2017) Edmund Lee The real pleasure of this film stems from the gentle jokes and imaginative character designs that are peppered throughout its episodic yet carefully interwoven storylines. EDIT
Posted Sep 25, 2019
2/5 Wu lin guai shou (2019) Edmund Lee A confused mix of creature feature and wuxia parody that delivers neither genre thrills nor any discernible historical perspective. EDIT
Posted Sep 25, 2019
3/5 Jia he wan shi jing (2019) Edmund Lee The latest Hong Kong film to derive dark humour from the city's housing woes ..., this is an average farce elevated by its bleak yet resonant premise. EDIT
Posted Sep 25, 2019
3.5/5 The New King of Comedy (2019) Edmund Lee The New King of Comedy is arguably Chow's best outing since he switched his focus to directing. EDIT
Posted Sep 25, 2019
2.5/5 Sadako (2019) James Marsh The balance between old world and new media is awkward and only intermittently successful, but nevertheless drags this lurching, wayward franchise back in the right direction. EDIT
Posted Sep 25, 2019
4/5 Jojo Rabbit (2019) James Marsh Waititi's award-winning adaptation of Christine Leunens' novel Caging Skies is by turns hilarious, horrifying and ultimately heartbreaking. EDIT
Posted Sep 23, 2019
3.5/5 The Lion King (2019) James Mottram While Favreau's polished film will always come a distant second for anyone who fell in love with the original, his version is hugely respectful to the story and has its powerful moments too. EDIT
Posted Sep 18, 2019