Escapist Magazine

Escapist Magazine is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer® when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Bob Chipman, Tony Black
Rating Title/Year Author
7/10 The Old Guard (2020) Bob Chipman You've seen Charlize Theron beat the sh** out of people and rock the "hot mom at the gym who doubles-up on arm-and-shoulder day" look but... I mean - why would you NOT want to see it again? EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
8/10 Greyhound (2020) Bob Chipman I can't not admire just how committed it is to the form of being, effectively "They Don't Make 'Em Like THAT Anymore: The Movie." EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
7/10 Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (2020) Bob Chipman Fantastic to realize that Rachel McAdams ISN'T being forced to be the straightwoman to Ferrell's madman - both halves of Fire Saga are equally dumb, earnest, silly, absurd characters and it's fun to watch her and Ferrell one up eachother across the film. EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
3/10 My Spy (2020) Bob Chipman When I say you've seen every gag, I mean the closest thing to a fun moment is a slapstick bit that's literally stolen almost beat for beat from True Lies. EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
9/10 Da 5 Bloods (2020) Bob Chipman The bulk of it clearly belongs to Lindo. Always an underappreciated actor, he's absolutely ICONIC here as a profoundly tormented, deeply-disturbed figure who effectively shifts between being one of the heroes and occasionally the villain of the piece. EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
7/10 SCOOB! (2020) Bob Chipman Might be the best movie for 8 year-olds ever to be made entirely out of pop-culture callbacks that no one under 45 is likely to recognize. EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
7/10 Extraction (2020) Bob Chipman Accidentally as close as anyone has come to capturing a "Call of Duty" game on film (right down to the agreeably over-the-top, very VERY R-rated body-count and blood-spilling. EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
9/10 The Outpost (2020) Bob Chipman Stylish without relying on over-stylization with a sense of pace and aesthetic informed more by a middle-ground between real field footage and first-person-shooter energy than yet another attempt to outgun "Black Hawk Down." EDIT
Posted Jul 25, 2020
9/10 Blood Quantum (2019) Bob Chipman "One of the best zombie movies of the 21st Century." EDIT
Posted Jun 2, 2020
9/10 Butt Boy (2019) Bob Chipman You may not be able to believe what the one-of-a-kind detective-thriller/horror-satire Butt Boy is actually about - but [it might be] one of the best films of 2020. Seriously. EDIT
Posted Apr 25, 2020
8/10 Color Out of Space (2019) Bob Chipman Manages to plant its flag as one of the more solid Lovecraft movies to date by succeeding in the main place the author often fell down: Humanity. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
5/10 The Hunt (2020) Bob Chipman An instantly-iconic 'this is a born action-heroine' turn by [Gilpin] ... She looks sharp with the weapons, spits out her one-liners with aplomb and looks like an absolute beast in the brutal hand-to-hand combat moments. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
6/10 Bloodshot (2020) Bob Chipman Overall, though - I didn't 'dislike' it - But please, guys... don't make me have to watch a Ninjak movie. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
7/10 Onward (2020) Bob Chipman Wisely settles into being a largely straightforward mismatched brothers road-trip movie that happens to take place in this bizarre setting, with the magical lore business kicking into higher gear as the stakes require in Act 3. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
6/10 The Invisible Man (2020) Bob Chipman A dark, fairly grounded and relentlessly unnerving thriller about domestic-abuse and psychological torment that's aiming hard for the 'subtext that's also just text' style of topical horror. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
7/10 Dragon Quest: Your Story (2019) Bob Chipman Appreciated from a distance as an art-object it's kind of a fascinatingly weird, beautiful oddity - especially when they're done with the plot stuff and can just hit the 'montage' or 'battle scene' button (which is... often) EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
8/10 The Call of the Wild (2020) Bob Chipman Seriously does not want to be one single thing more than a quietly-moving movie about an old man and a dog camping in the woods and figuring out what's really important in life - and it really commits to that. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
2/10 Sonic the Hedgehog (2020) Bob Chipman Bland, flat, basic off the shelf pablum meeting the minimum requirements of being 'technically a movie' because someone paid for the rights to Sonic The Hedgehog and had to make it eventually. An even worse version of Howard The Duck EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
9/10 Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) Bob Chipman A raucous, deeply strange piece of punk-rock pop-art that's probably as close as anyone has come to making a Takeshi Miike or Sion Sono movie (or a Troma flick, for that matter) on a studio budget in years. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
8/10 Gretel & Hansel (2020) Bob Chipman Exactly what you'd get if a producer in the Arkoff/Corman mold handed a hungry filmmaking team copies of The Witch and Mandy and said 'Mash these into one thing and wrap it around the skeleton of a marketable public-domain IP!' EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
7/10 The Gentlemen (2020) Bob Chipman God damn if Guy Ritchie isn't still better than anyone else on the planet at making exactly this movie. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
3/10 Dolittle (2020) Bob Chipman The only consistent element is noting that Robert Downey Jr is officially powerful enough as a top-billed star that once he decided to start doing this particular 'funny' accent as Dolittle... nobody was able to stop him. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
6/10 Bad Boys for Life (2020) Bob Chipman Without the signature 'Bayhem' action, it mostly feels like another action film. Not a bad one, but not really anything special apart from connection to a franchise old enough to be a nostalgia-reference to itself. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
6/10 Like a Boss (2020) Bob Chipman A serviceable if forgettable buddy comedy mostly noteworthy for everything it doesn't do moreso than anything it actually does. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
7/10 Underwater (2020) Bob Chipman Basic competency - How I've missed you! EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
4/10 The Grudge (2020) Bob Chipman The dramatic payoff to the buy-in of all this bleak seriousness never really amounts to anything and it makes the viewing kind of a chore. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
10/10 Little Women (2019) Bob Chipman Easily rates as the finest adaptation of the classic novel ever undertaken; an elevating and transcendent work where Gerwig does for Alcott what Francis Ford Coppola did for Mario Puzo. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
7/10 1917 (2019) Bob Chipman 'Arthouse World War I mood-piece as live-action videogame Let's Play' isn't exactly a populous subgenre; though one has to assume 'What if Ernest Hemmingway had made Hardcore Henry?' is a pitch that would raise at least a few eyebrows. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
3/10 Cats (2019) Bob Chipman You'd think you couldn't make a scene like 'WereCat Taylor Swift literally drugs a roomful of other cat-persons into a horny psychedlic frenzy for her suggestive burlesque number' inert and bland... but they found a way. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
8/10 Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) Bob Chipman Daisy Ridley and Adam Driver have both honed their individual characters and chemistry to a very strong place, and their scenes together are easily the strongest in the film. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2020
7/10 6 Underground (2019) Bob Chipman A "Why can't things just WORK, damn it!?" save-the-world daydream processed through a lens of pure, unrestrained Bayhem; espousing what can only described - without prejudice! - as a benevolently-fascist (SMALL-f!) fantasy of utopian philanthrocapitalism. EDIT
Posted Dec 15, 2019
8/10 Parasite (2019) Bob Chipman Has other, more interesting, uncomfortable things on it's mind - and the most uncomfortable of all is [when] you start to realize none of these people are as bad as you want them to be. EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2019
9/10 Uncut Gems (2019) Bob Chipman How'd we end up in a place where the new crime movie starring Happy Gilmore, the voice of Elsa and the power forward for the '07 to 2013 Celtics is... honestly kinda BETTER than the new crime movie starring DeNiro, Pacino and Joe Pesci? EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2019
7/10 Knives Out (2019) Bob Chipman The difference [is in] Johnson's now infamous signature flourish of letting utterly traditional (even formulaic) sequences play out exactly as the audiences have been trained to expect and then going "Okay but what if not?" EDIT
Posted Dec 9, 2019
8/10 Frozen II (2019) Bob Chipman It's none the less pretty damn impressive how resolutely the film commits to doing it differently this time. EDIT
Posted Nov 15, 2019
7/10 Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) Bob Chipman I like the audacity of what it's willing to throw out, the new stuff it's willing to bring in, the new places it's set up to go and the fresh 21st Century angle enough that I wish the rest of it wasn't merely "pretty darn good." EDIT
Posted Nov 3, 2019
7/10 Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (2019) Bob Chipman A wickedly-subversive dark fairytale with a high fantasy aesthetic dominated (occasionally in the most suggestive sense possible) by Jolie; flashing a blinding vampire smile of ivory fangs and blood-red lips as the ultimate 21st Century Goth Goddess. EDIT
Posted Oct 15, 2019
4/10 Joker (2019) Bob Chipman A shallow movie playing at being deep, a basic movie that thinks it's complex, not even particularly shocking or violent or transgressive enough to be "outraged" about in any meaningful way. It has nothing much to say - and yet it won't shut up. EDIT
Posted Oct 2, 2019
7/10 Ad Astra (2019) Bob Chipman An Awards Season scifi-drama from 2019 cast like a $100 Million Summer blockbuster from 1998 with an early-2000s premise and 2010s Terrence Mallick-y whisper-narration framing device, shooting for the Oscars in 2020 - how's that for space-time dilation? EDIT
Posted Sep 22, 2019
4/10 Rambo: Last Blood (2019) Bob Chipman [Feels more like] a generic Taken knock-off goosed up with some half-hearted Mexican-border xenophobia that can't even muster the energy to commit to that base level of thematic coherence. EDIT
Posted Sep 20, 2019
8/10 Hustlers (2019) Bob Chipman A sexy, compelling, funny, nuanced, touching and often unexpectedly thoughtful crime-drama that aims to be the "Goodfellas" of stripper movies; featuring Jennifer Lopez in a dramatic comeback role that could well net a Best Supporting Actress nomination. EDIT
Posted Sep 14, 2019
3/10 It: Chapter Two (2019) Bob Chipman Well Steve... the good news is; now that you tried, a miniseries tried and a movie tried, it's pretty clear: It wasn't just you - NO ONE can figure out a good ending for this one. EDIT
Posted Sep 10, 2019
7/10 Ready or Not (2019) Bob Chipman [Weaving is] a monster talent with the ability to handily embody the part of bewildered prey, competent action heroine and frustrated had-it-up-to-here slapstick comedy straightwoman in the same movie and effectively carry the tone of the whole thing EDIT
Posted Sep 10, 2019
3/10 Angel Has Fallen (2019) Bob Chipman shakes up the formula by having Agent Mike Banning save himself instead of saving the president. But he still also saves the president. A different president, but the president, still. Also Nick Nolte is there. EDIT
Posted Sep 10, 2019
Bird Box (2018) Noah Berlatsky I saw Bird Box in previews before the hype and thought it was an entertaining, small-scale Sandra Bullock film with a nifty concept and few pretensions. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
Polar (2019) Noah Berlatsky Polar doesn't fully understand what a great idea it's stumbled into... it gets distracted by pointless Guy Ritchie-esque stylistic flourishes, a predictably tragic/heartwarming twist ending. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
Ant-Man and The Wasp (2018) Noah Berlatsky Giant stories are by their nature hard to wrap your head, or your heart, around. But Ant-Man and the Wasp's smaller-than-life stakes give its characters, and its plot, room to breathe. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
Captain Marvel (2019) Noah Berlatsky The first half hour of Captain Marvel feels disjointed and poorly developed in part because you're dumped into an alien culture you know nothing about, which you see from the perspective of a woman who has no memories and doesn't know who she is. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
The Dead Don't Die (2019) Noah Berlatsky It has no purpose, it has no goal, and it has no end. But [Jim] Jarmusch doesn't see that as a reason to despair. Instead he wants you to know it's fun to watch the pallid imitation of life. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
6/10 The Bravest (2019) Bob Chipman Easily the best firefighter movie since Backdraft and might be the best of it's type ever - in any language - period. EDIT
Posted Aug 16, 2019