Epoch Times

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
4.5/5 Ask No Questions (2020) Joe Bendel This is an incisive documentary that arrives at a perfect time. EDIT
Posted Jul 21, 2020
4/5 Runner (2019) Mark Jackson Sad about the cancelled 2020 Summer Olympics? Here's your Olympic fix, and then some; a great, true tale of a South Sudanese world-class runner. Heartwarming is putting it lightly. EDIT
Posted Jul 17, 2020
Eden (2012) Joe Bendel "Eden" addresses an important and timely topic, but the fearless performances from Chung and O'Leary will completely hook audiences on an emotional level. EDIT
Posted Jul 16, 2020
2.5 The Short History of the Long Road (2019) Mark Jackson With all the trafficking going on today, while already somewhat sad and dreary, it might have been a better choice to portray teenage female homeless drifting even less romantically. EDIT
Posted Jun 12, 2020
4/5 For Love of the Game (1999) Mark Jackson "Bull Durham" is a more powerful movie than "For Love of the Game," so Kevin Costner might be better as a savvy minor league catcher than a hall-of-fame major league pitcher, but the fact is, Costner is simply and utterly baseballic. He's baseballerific. EDIT
Posted Jun 10, 2020
4.5/5 Bull Durham (1988) Mark Jackson You 'd never find similar scenes to "Bull Durham" in, say, Europe, and not because they don't have our national pastime; they're just too sensible. You simply have to love America to be able to revel in our delightful, deep state of cultural silliness. EDIT
Posted Jun 10, 2020
4.5/5 Braveheart (1995) Mark Jackson Bullying Brits are given notice that the towering rage of an alpha-dominant Scottish leader in command of a shocking array of guerilla warfare tactics has been unleashed on them like a full-blown, modern-day special operations warrior. Let freedom ring! EDIT
Posted Jun 10, 2020
4/5 Thunderheart (1992) Mark Jackson "Thunderheart" ties together in ways that whisper of a deep, organic logic, both the humanly visible as well as the existence of unseen, other-dimensional realities that were commonplace in early American tribal life. EDIT
Posted Jun 10, 2020
3/5 The Cowboys (1972) Mark Jackson A summer of brutally hard work, hunger, camping in the elements, and rattlesnake danger will certainly turn boys into men. In this case, however, it appears to supernaturally turn boys into a seasoned platoon of modern-day special operations warriors. EDIT
Posted Jun 10, 2020
2.5/5 Blood and Money (2020) Mark Jackson Similar to "Uncut Gems," the film attempts to make you care about a character who's not really likable and whose uninterrupted greed constantly calls down immediate karmic retribution upon his head, which you're then forced to be annoyed by. EDIT
Posted Jun 10, 2020
4.5/5 Annie Hall (1977) Mark Jackson "Annie Hall" isn't a conventional rom-com but a very accurate and bittersweet depiction of the dynamics of relationships, tinged with Allen's melancholic personality, and made to go down easier than it normally would, due to his world-class humor. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
4/5 The Sunshine Boys (1975) Mark Jackson A one-trick pony with a hundred jokes about encroaching dementia. It was hilarious when I was 16, but now that I often wander into the living room from the kitchen and can't remember what I went in there for--it's less funny. Which is kinda funny. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
4.5/5 Stand by Me (1986) Mark Jackson The line, "I never really had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve," is a haunting fact and true wellspring of great sadness for most men. "Stand By Me" is one of the most memorable, funny, and wise movies ever made about boyhood. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
4.5/5 Thelma & Louise (1991) Mark Jackson Regardless of its feminist stacked deck, "Thelma & Louise" is still one of the most fun movies you'll ever see. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
4/5 Apollo 13 (1995) Mark Jackson This film is a tribute to the all-American values of tenacity, teamwork, ingenuity, and--as is the case for all teams on dangerous missions--selflessness and brotherhood. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
4/5 Napoleon Dynamite (2004) Mark Jackson Geek extraordinaire Napoleon thinks he's dynamite, wearing his brown velour suit and other 1970s fashion faux pas like they were bestowed on him to be cooler-than-you in. You will be inspired to likewise walk to the beat of your own drum. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
4.5/5 Midnight Run (1988) Mark Jackson There's a certain blue-collar demographic pocket in America where "Midnight Run" will live on forever. I still hear manly guys quoting it 30 years later. You wanna die laughing? Here's your chance. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
2/5 Welcome to the Men's Group (2016) Mark Jackson True mytho-poetic men's work is about resurrecting the tribal, sacred masculine in order to help heal our messed-up world. To fumble that ball with a flaccid comedy that portrays men as blithering idiots is a bit of a crime. Watch "The Work" instead. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
3/5 Click (2006) Mark Jackson A remote-control gizmo allows Adam Sandler to skip all of life's bad stuff and blows the whistle on current culture's instant-gratification laziness. It'll teach your kids to learn to take the bad with the good. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2020
3.5/5 Moon Man (2012) Joe Bendel "Moon Man" has a healthy supply of idealism with the right subversive garnish. [Stephan] Schesch keeps the mood light and airy, even when the chips are down, maintaining a pleasant medium-up-tempo pace. EDIT
Posted May 1, 2020
What Richard Did (2012) Joe Bendel While [Lenny] Abrahamson's patience in setting the scene and establishing the social dynamics among the characters is admirable, his efforts make the film top-heavy with exposition and rather repetitive carousing sequences. EDIT
Posted Apr 30, 2020
3.5/5 The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013) Mark Jackson If you're a man who daydreams too much about exacting revenge for bullying, and wishing for a better life situation, have a gander at "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty," and then go sign up for a Vision Quest, or a New Warrior Training Adventure. EDIT
Posted Apr 2, 2020
4.5/5 The Milagro Beanfield War (1988) Mark Jackson "Milagro" captures the inherent naiveté of the liberal '60s sentiment of power to the people. Hilarious and incredibly warm, it's a tribute to a fading culture, leaving one with an ache, knowing soon nobody will be able to hear the wisdom of Coyote Angel. EDIT
Posted Apr 2, 2020
3/5 I Still Believe (2020) Mark Jackson Go to any museum. All the early stuff-it's all gods and saints. Art is meant to uplift. Faith-based films, albeit heavy-handedly, attempt to heal. So why trash them? They always have their hearts in the right place. EDIT
Posted Apr 2, 2020
3.5/5 The Way Back (2020) Mark Jackson It needed to depict the recovery process more. The tried-and-true way back from any addiction is universally about prayer, meditation, cultivating a belief in a Higher Power, and following a series of actions that consistently raise one's moral standard. EDIT
Posted Apr 2, 2020
4/5 Miracle (2004) Mark Jackson The game remains one of the best moments in sports history. "Miracle" depicts America's spiritual triumph over the Specter of Communism. The implications of this Olympic showdown went far beyond the scope of sports, in the grand scheme of things. EDIT
Posted Mar 8, 2020
3.5/5 Once Were Brothers: Robbie Robertson and The Band (2019) Mark Jackson "Once Were Brothers" would appear to be a final attempt by Robertson to clear his name and tell his side of the story, but this is ultimately Robertson's ode to his band of brothers, and as such, it is moving, tragic, and yet also celebratory and joyous. EDIT
Posted Mar 2, 2020
3.5/5 Buffaloed (2019) Mark Jackson "Buffaloed" is a hilarious movie about America's debt-collecting infestation, and Zoey Deutch's showbiz archetype is a squeaky-voiced, hyper-ambitious, eternally optimistic, cutthroat survivor, who's also extremely charming. That's some serious charisma. EDIT
Posted Feb 19, 2020
2/5 Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) Mark Jackson Hyper-violent cartoon fluff, with nary a moral in sight, unless you count keeping a hyena in a tiny New York apartment as an act of kindness. Maybe it was a rescue hyena? Whatever. Prepubescent girls sneaking a peek at pajama parties will be damaged. EDIT
Posted Feb 12, 2020
2.5/5 The Rhythm Section (2020) Mark Jackson As the old Virginia Slims cigarette ads used to say, "You've come a long way, baby," and from a feminist POV, that's progress. And I agree that quippy Bond, such as he was, had to go. But I personally exited "The Rhythm Section" feeling harmed in my soul. EDIT
Posted Feb 3, 2020
3.5/5 The Last Full Measure (2020) Mark Jackson The award ceremony, when group after group of servicemen, family members, and various and assorted people touched by this courageous airman's valorous deed are asked to stand-and one can see how vast the repercussions of good deeds are-it's truly moving. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2020
3.5/5 The Gentlemen (2020) Mark Jackson Guy Ritchie's "The Gentlemen" is about human predators out-thinking each other in hilarious ways. Which is generally what Guy Ritchie movies are about. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2020
3.5/5 Bad Boys for Life (2020) Mark Jackson Like Clint Eastwood poking fun at his own aging in "Unforgiven," "Bad Boys For LIfe" makes use of the aging factor. The Bad Boys are turning into Good Men. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2020
1/5 Dolittle (2020) Mark Jackson This latest incarnation "Dr. Dolittle," starring Robert Downey, Jr., is for kindergarten-age children only. EDIT
Posted Feb 2, 2020
4/5 Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939) Mark Jackson Frank Capra's movies were often derided as "Capra-corn." And yet, they summed up-better than anyone before or since-the folksy essence and upright values the founding fathers bequeathed to America. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2020
2.5/5 Underwater (2020) Mark Jackson The only reason to go see "Underwater" is to enjoy seeing K-Stew following in Emily Blunt's footsteps and handling her first action role like a boss. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2020
4.5/5 A Room With a View (1986) Mark Jackson "A Room With a View" is an artistically told tale of a Victorian-era "Little-Miss-Can't-Be-Wrong" learning to follow her heart and live her bliss. EDIT
Posted Jan 14, 2020
3/5 Uncut Gems (2019) Mark Jackson A cunning yet hapless clown juggling 15 balls simultaneously. It'll seriously raise your blood pressure. The question is, do you feel the need to do that? What actually ruined this film for me was the bizarre, '80s-inflected, mostly synthesizer score. EDIT
Posted Jan 7, 2020
4.5/5 Little Women (2019) Mark Jackson Director Gerwig brings a massive wallop of childhood nostalgia for the all-girl families. Is it any wonder that this is the sixth film adaptation? I think not. All-girl families hold a special place in the memories of Americans. Especially American boys. EDIT
Posted Jan 7, 2020
2.5/5 Bombshell (2019) Mark Jackson It would have been more exciting to watch the true story of Gretchen Carlson nailing the man responsible for electing Richard Nixon. She managed to sneak a smartphone by Ailes's security team and recorded him owning up to his casting-couch shenanigans. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
4/5 1917 (2019) Mark Jackson The use of a camera seamlessly following two men through the trenches, barbed wire, and horrors of No Man's Land is a sight we didn't know we needed to see. We need to see it. Because it adds to the heap of things about war that we should never forget. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
4/5 Richard Jewell (2019) Mark Jackson "The Report" showed the importance of truthful investigative journalism in unearthing foul play by corrupt organizations. "Richard Jewell" demonstrates the power that the media wields, using unproven allegations, to wreak havoc with people's lives. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
4.5/5 12 Angry Men (1957) Mark Jackson "12 Angry Men" puts the full range of human good and evil on display. It posits that, ultimately, the universe is benevolent, and our job, regarding each other, is to attempt with our best effort and greatest compassion to elucidate and clarify the truth. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
3/5 Enchanted April (1991) Mark Jackson If you're considering marriage counseling, watch "Enchanted April." Instead of blaming your spouse, embrace the fact that your annoyance comes from you being reflected back to yourself. We can only change ourselves. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
4/5 Dark Waters (2019) Mark Jackson "Dark Waters" reveals the sheer, bold-faced lying inherent in DuPont's classic slogan "Better Living Through Chemistry." It's right up there with Nazi Germany's Auschwitz concentration camp's "Arbeit Macht Frei." EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
5/5 Queen & Slim (2019) Mark Jackson In the end, there's a great love and an aching tragedy that'll sit with you for a few days, in the ways we Americans prefer, like the haunting melancholy of a favorite country song. And incandescent acting, by Brits being 'Muricans. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
3.5/5 The Report (2019) Mark Jackson "The Report" depicts the torture and death of prisoners the United States was responsible for. We didn't know the "enhanced interrogation" techniques were hatched by a couple of zealous, CIA-appointed pseudoscientists. EDIT
Posted Dec 30, 2019
4/5 Apollo 11 (2019) Joe Bendel Most importantly, the film recaptures a sense of how the Apollo Program inspired the nation. EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2019
4/5 In the Aisles (2018) Ian Kane It is a subtle celebration of the concept of the "work family," or the forming of meaningful bonds through the virtue of work, no matter how myopic that work may seem. EDIT
Posted Dec 3, 2019
3/5 Playing With Fire (2019) Mark Jackson Cena, like Dwayne and Arnold before him, has biceps the size of watermelons, and doesn't take himself seriously. This child movie might make you yawn, but kids will think it's grand. Moms will also likely find the biceps very interesting to look at. EDIT
Posted Nov 13, 2019