San Francisco Examiner

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
3/4 The Reports on Sarah and Saleem (2018) Anita Katz [The Reports on Sarah and Saleem] resonantly conveys the tensions that pervade its setting and the mistrust inherent in what appears to be virtually every cross-cultural interaction. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
3/4 Annabelle Comes Home (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson "Annabelle Comes Home" is definitely scary, from a sequence in which a blood-spattered bride circles a room, to one in which Daniela watches images of herself on a haunted TV set. EDIT
Posted Jul 1, 2019
3/4 Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am (2019) Anita Katz The most satisfying thoughts, however, come directly from Morrison. Possessing insight, warmth, humor, humanity and radiant confidence, she's a spellbinding presence. EDIT
Posted Jun 27, 2019
3.5/4 Toy Story 4 (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Although the plot focuses on Pixar's exciting, expertly done rescues and escapes, "Toy Story 4" makes its masterstroke after those have played out. EDIT
Posted Jun 24, 2019
3/4 Funan (2019) Anita Katz Paris-born director Denis Do affectingly combines hand-drawn animation with a fact-based story of horror and hope in this adult-geared, French-language, Cambodia-set debut feature. EDIT
Posted Jun 21, 2019
3.5/4 The Dead Don't Die (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson A subversive surprise, a possible cult classic for brainy cineastes. EDIT
Posted Jun 17, 2019
2.5/4 Halston (2019) Anita Katz Tthe film vividly presents the accomplishments of the famed designer. It's too bad it doesn't go beneath alluring surfaces to explore his deeper character. EDIT
Posted Jun 13, 2019
3/4 Late Night (2019) Anita Katz It is Thompson who achieves comic, and occasionally poignant, gold. Whether Katherine is being a venerable diva, a tyrannical boss or a vulnerable human being, she's a terrific heroine whose transformation is a treat to watch. EDIT
Posted Jun 13, 2019
3.5/4 The Last Black Man in San Francisco (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson With Ernst Lubitsch-like pacing, Talbot allows humor to grow in spaces between moments... the jokes are hard to describe, but easy to get. EDIT
Posted Jun 12, 2019
3.5/4 The Silence of Others (2018) Anita Katz The [terrific] film focuses largely on post-Franco Spain, a country failing to come to terms with its past. EDIT
Posted Jun 4, 2019
3.5/4 Long Day's Journey Into Night (2018) Anita Katz This film won't satisfy everyone, but those interested in risky, bravura filmmaking should check it out, on the big screen. EDIT
Posted Jun 4, 2019
2.5/4 Ma (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson It's as if the makers of "Ma" were having fun slumming, giggling and snorting, but with no concept of how a movie could be truly affecting or disturbing. EDIT
Posted May 31, 2019
3/4 Double Lives (2018) Anita Katz The cast sparkles. Hamzawi, relatively new to the big screen, is particularly wonderful when revealing the seemingly harsh Valerie's warmer side. EDIT
Posted May 30, 2019
3/4 Photograph (2019) Anita Katz Batra's organically flowing filmmaking absorbs viewers into the characters' lives and the atmosphere of bustling Mumbai, with its taxicabs, street-food vendors and ever-present juxtapositions of old and new. EDIT
Posted May 30, 2019
3/4 Rocketman (2019) Anita Katz A musical fantasy that never quite breaks free from the rock-biopic formula but nonetheless delivers some satisfying pizzazz and joy. EDIT
Posted May 30, 2019
3/4 John Wick: Chapter 3 -- Parabellum (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Stahelski, a former stuntman, knows how to stage fights, but unlike most stuntmen, he knows how to film them, too, with clean, graceful camera moves, head-to-toe framing, and very few cuts, like a Fred Astaire/Ginger Rogers musical number. EDIT
Posted May 17, 2019
2.5/4 Pokémon Detective Pikachu (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Reynolds' voice and caffeinated charm flow with the huggable Pikachu, the little yellow fellow with bunny ears, pink cheeks and supercool lightning tail who skitters and bounds. EDIT
Posted May 10, 2019
1.5/4 The Intruder (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Merely ridiculous and laughable, "The Intruder" is all mechanical. Nothing anyone does comes from a place of belief or honesty or passion. EDIT
Posted May 3, 2019
4/4 Avengers: Endgame (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson The climactic war is more than just a CGI-laden smash-fest. Every corner of the chaos, every maneuver and turn, represent an important moment in the lives of the characters. EDIT
Posted Apr 25, 2019
2/4 Red Joan (2018) Anita Katz The drama falls irremediably flat, suffering from an absence of well-developed characters. Joan's motives often are unclear or lack credibility. EDIT
Posted Apr 25, 2019
3/4 Little Woods (2018) Anita Katz It may sound cliched to say we root for these women, but indeed we do, deep down. EDIT
Posted Apr 18, 2019
3.5/4 Missing Link (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Perhaps does not plumb the depths of profundity that "Coraline" and "ParaNorman" did, but it's a funny, great-looking, fast-moving and delightfully likable adventure. EDIT
Posted Apr 12, 2019
3/4 Peterloo (2018) Anita Katz The film relevantly demonstrates how the rich, powerful and clueless have continued to oppress life's have-nots, a common Leigh theme. It also celebrates political and community organizing vividly. EDIT
Posted Apr 11, 2019
3.5/4 Diane (2018) Anita Katz A beautifully made and exceptionally acted portrait of a woman at the point on her path where she starts seriously considering how her life has turned out. EDIT
Posted Apr 4, 2019
3/4 Dumbo (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Burton also makes "Dumbo" his very own; weirdly, the little elephant has more than a little in common with his best creation, "Edward Scissorhands," a mocked and ridiculed outcast with an extraordinary ability and soulfully expressive eyes. EDIT
Posted Mar 28, 2019
2.5/4 Hotel Mumbai (2018) Anita Katz Patel is as deep as a tea saucer here, but the likability and ease he brings to his character make the hackneyed material bearable. EDIT
Posted Mar 28, 2019
3.5/4 Us (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Some may compare "Us" to "Get Out" and find it wanting, but others will realize no measuring is necessary. "Us" is very simply a tense, startling, and wildly entertaining, movie. EDIT
Posted Mar 22, 2019
3.5/4 Transit (2018) Anita Katz Petzold's adaptation shifts narration duties to a minor character. He's not all that omniscient, but like the rest of this movie, he's got lots to say. EDIT
Posted Mar 21, 2019
3/4 Gloria Bell (2018) Anita Katz Moore creates a fresh and sparkling Gloria, whose face can shift from ebullience to disappointment in a flash. Gloria's scenes with the excellent Turturro's Arnold contain exciting chemistry. EDIT
Posted Mar 14, 2019
3/4 Captain Marvel (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson In the end, it has a girl-power zing that lifts and exhilarates. EDIT
Posted Mar 7, 2019
3/4 Styx (2018) Anita Katz As an indictment of indifference, the movie is neither preachy nor heavy-handed. EDIT
Posted Mar 7, 2019
3/4 Greta (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson In Jordan's skillful hands, "Greta," despite silliness, works fairly well. EDIT
Posted Mar 1, 2019
2.5/4 To Dust (2018) Anita Katz Likable but uneven, this seriocomedy benefits from a uniquely quirky premise and winning protagonists. But it can't overcome tonal problems and bumpy storytelling. EDIT
Posted Feb 28, 2019
3/4 Pájaros de verano (2018) Anita Katz Absorbingly told through the eyes of its indigenous characters, the movie, isn't just a subtitled narco picture. It's a remarkable portrait of a little-known culture. EDIT
Posted Feb 28, 2019
3/4 How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Stays aloft at mostly the same level as its predecessors. EDIT
Posted Feb 22, 2019
3/4 Happy Death Day 2U (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Not only good, it also manages to deepen the characters that were so silly and lovable in the first film. EDIT
Posted Feb 15, 2019
3/4 Todos lo saben (2018) Anita Katz As the crime counts less than the human realities it exposes, the domestic drama - despite being thickly soapy and lacking the textural richness of Farhadi's other movies - outshines the kidnap plot. EDIT
Posted Feb 14, 2019
3/4 The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson While "The Lego Movie 2" doesn't tower over its predecessor, it adds to the franchise's bricky structure with a satisfying click. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
3/4 Cold Pursuit (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson In so many action movies, death is arbitrary, but here it counts and is accepted, as are the myriad ways humans respond to death. EDIT
Posted Feb 8, 2019
Arctic (2018) Anita Katz As survival thrillers go, the movie is compelling. It's also a poignant story of decency and hope. It also demonstrates the power of minimalist storytelling. EDIT
Posted Feb 7, 2019
4/4 They Shall Not Grow Old (2018) Anita Katz This is a war picture like none we've ever seen and the latest example of the grand, gripping, humane potential of the big screen. EDIT
Posted Jan 31, 2019
2/4 An Acceptable Loss (2018) Anita Katz The coda, more brightly, isn't bad; but Curtis is the only reason to see this film. EDIT
Posted Jan 24, 2019
2.5/4 Adult Life Skills (2016) Anita Katz Tunnard lays on the quirks so excessively that the constant eccentricity - goofy attire, silly toys, wacky anatomical gags - upstages the more richly human and satisfying material. EDIT
Posted Jan 17, 2019
2/4 The Aspern Papers (2018) Anita Katz The psychological suspense and romantic intrigue barely register. The movie's a frustrating missed opportunity. EDIT
Posted Jan 10, 2019
3/4 Escape Room (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Succeeds in unlocking raw, primal human fear and adrenaline. EDIT
Posted Jan 4, 2019
3/4 Vice (2018) Anita Katz McKay delivers so much creative energy and Bale is so scarily Cheney-like that the film prompts enough laughs and contains enough sizzling truths to overcome its flaws. EDIT
Posted Dec 26, 2018
2.5/4 Aquaman (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson The screenplay must have had the line "suddenly, they are interrupted by an explosion" copied and pasted randomly several times throughout. EDIT
Posted Dec 21, 2018
3/4 Capernaum (2018) Anita Katz Despite an occasional bit of heavy-handedness, the film credibly and grippingly looks at poverty, child neglect, refugees and ID-card insanity. EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2018
4/4 Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson Not quite like anything you've seen before. It's amazing, astonishing and spectacular. EDIT
Posted Dec 17, 2018
3/4 Anna and the Apocalypse (2017) Jeffrey M. Anderson "Anna and the Apocalypse" is out to thwart expectations. It will knock you sideways, but the more you think about it (and the more it's viewed during the holidays), the more you'll like it. EDIT
Posted Dec 17, 2018