San Francisco Examiner
Quantum of Solace (2008)
JCVD (Van Dammage) (2008)
Role Models (2008)
"'Role Models' is what you might expect, a juvenile farce that celebrates a sort of nihilistic, anything-goes raunchiness before revealing its heart of gold. There's nothing wrong with a formula like this when it works. Here it does."
Quantum of Solace (2008)
"While the rejuvenation of the franchise has been put on temporary hold, be assured that 'Quantum of Solace' sparkles with all the wit and heart-pounding excitement of a movie that takes its name from an Ian Fleming story about cocktail-party chitchat."
Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (2008)
"There are a few laughs, courtesy of King Julien, a self-aggrandizing lemur who comes off as a pint-sized parody of Dubya. But this isn't a movie concerned with engaging hearts and minds so much as bombarding the ears with Top 40 sing-alongs."
Pride and Glory (2008)
"It's smooth and competently crafted, an efficient thriller punctuated by startling bursts of violence and nuanced performances from Norton, whose tough-cop routine masks a sort of cerebral tenderness, and the ever-reliable Noah Emmerich."
Saw V (2008)
"Jigsaw has seen better days. That's saying a lot, considering he was last spotted on a mortuary slab, his rotting flesh a sickly shade of gray as a medical examiner nonchalantly sliced open his stomach."
Synecdoche, New York (2008)
"It's not so much that his film defies description as that none could adequately prepare you for the experience of watching it. Kaufman's existential musings are sometimes self-indulgent, but they are also heartfelt and wickedly funny."
Filth and Wisdom (2008)
Zack and Miri Make a Porno (2008)
"It's a classic love story dressed up as something a bit racier, and not only do we know where it's going, we know just how it plans to get there. That's okay, in the end, because Smith and his leads make Zack and Miri a couple worth knowing."
Max Payne (2008)
"A bold, thought-provoking and utterly fascinating character study that reveals the kinder, gentler side of a man previously defined by his disastrous policies and bumbling malapropisms. One of the year's best."
The Express (2008)
Body of Lies (2008)
"'Body of Lies' is a tense, deftly paced meditation on America's role in the Middle East, and if it's not quite a war movie, it offers somber insights into the Bush administration's campaign against terror that recent thrillers like 'The Kingdom' have not."
Miracle at St. Anna (2008)
"Maher's Michael Moore-style ambushes, though staged with less panache than the master's, are incisive and often laugh-out-loud funny, even if his targets often seem more like kooks and dimwits than serious theologians."
Lakeview Terrace (2008)
"'Lakeview Terrace' begins as a tense, compelling tale of ideological opposites headed for an ugly clash and ends in contrived melodrama as Abel completes his transformation from badge-waving bully to bogeyman."
Snow Angels (2007)
"Rockwell, who brought a sense of desperate unease to his roles in 'The Assassination of Jesse James' and 'Confessions of a Dangerous Mind,' does the same here, with results that are at once frightening and pathetically sad."
"Mamet's dialogue is crisp, invigorated by supporting players (particularly Mantegna and Jay) who relish his acerbic wordplay. But for a movie that aims to do for jujitsu what 'Rocky' did for boxing, 'Redbelt' taps out before the final bell."
Righteous Kill (2008)
Burn After Reading (2008)
"Here, the brothers weave an elaborate, misanthropic web of desperation and betrayal around a group of characters so jaded they take no real pleasure from their artless deceptions and sordid affairs. Imagine how we feel."
Babylon A.D. (2008)
The Rocker (2008)
The House Bunny (2008)
Death Race (2008)
Street Kings (2008)
"If you can forgive its stale dialogue, which at times seems so egregiously leaden that it might have been better suited to a Mad magazine parody, 'Street Kings' is a tense, aggressively absurd thriller."
Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008)
Land of the Dead (2005)
The Reaping (2007)
"Aattou plays his role with the supreme self-confidence of a man in control, his deep blue eyes radiating calm, but Argento seems to know better. She is a wild, physical force, a primal fury who could only be resisted if she were to allow it."
The Dark Knight (2008)
"From the start, it drags us down to the fiery pits of Gotham's anarchic hell and never lets us up for air; it is a bruising, unrelenting slice of sensory overload, a captivating spectacle as likely to dazzle the eyes as fray the nerves."
Zombie Strippers (2008)
"Acting is hardly of great consequence in a movie where everyone involved seems a little too in on the joke, as if distancing themselves from material that would simply be vile if it weren't so outrageously over the top."
The Hills Have Eyes (2006)
"It is an artfully crafted exercise in high-octane style, bolstered by a stronger cast than most horror films could ever hope to assemble, but it's a bitter, sleazy little pill that leaves an ugly aftertaste."
"The original "Chain Saw Massacre" spoke, in unsettling terms, to middle America's growing contempt for the '60s counter-culture, but no deeper meaning can be ascribed to this mayhem. It's just a joyless technical exercise."
"Clearly, del Toro has a deep affection for both his characters and the world of gods and fairy-tale monsters, and it translates into a rich, sophisticated sequel that actually improves on the original."
I'm Not There (2007)
"Abstract expressionism, paying tribute to its hero in a fashion every bit as enigmatic and chameleon-like as the man himself. Is it a faux-documentary? Is it a biographical drama? At times, it is both. In the end, we are left with an ambitious misfire."
The Incredible Hulk (2008)