Austin American-Statesman

Tomatometer-approved publication
Rating Title/Year Author
B The Lion King (2019) Eric Webb This is a classic tale told beautifully - as long as the toddler in my row felt like roaring whenever Simba did, all must be well in the Pride Lands. Hakunah freakin' matata. EDIT
Posted Jul 11, 2019
At the Heart of Gold: Inside the USA Gymnastics Scandal (2019) Matt Shiverdecker Make no mistake, this is not easy viewing. [Erin Lee] Carr thankfully avoids giving Dr. Larry Nassar much screen time and instead lets the women and their families tell their own stories with the help of some investigative journalists. EDIT
Posted Jul 1, 2019
B- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) Joe Gross While fun, "Far From Home" feels vaguely unnecessary, a bit of connective tissue between Really Big Marvel Event Movies. EDIT
Posted Jun 30, 2019
B- Men in Black: International (2019) Eric Webb Before you know it, the movie's over, and you've got an empty smile on your face, like someone who just chugged a Pepsi before you knew the store sold Coke. "Couldn't that have been much better?" you think. EDIT
Posted Jun 12, 2019
D Dark Phoenix (2019) Joe Gross As one character puts it about a crucial plot development, "Nobody cares anymore." No kidding. EDIT
Posted Jun 6, 2019
C Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) Joe Gross Heck, maybe it was appropriate to show us so many monsters, what with the next hurricane, flood and tornado right around the corner, ready to remind us we are all at nature's mercy. But that doesn't make it good storytelling. EDIT
Posted May 29, 2019
() Joe Gross "The Gift" is like a lavishly illustrated Bible -- you know the story, but this is a gorgeous version. EDIT
Posted May 28, 2019
B- Aladdin (2019) Eric Webb The moon glows. The starcrossed lovers sail over, sideways and under through an endless diamond sky.... Is the whole movie splendid? No. But it does prove the enduring magic of this story, even in a whole new world. EDIT
Posted May 23, 2019
Her Smell (2018) Matt Shiverdecker This has an awful name, but it's a phenomenal movie. EDIT
Posted May 14, 2019
Jeremiah Terminator LeRoy (2018) Matt Shiverdecker Both Dern and Stewart are terrific and do a lot of heavy lifting for a script that fumbles. EDIT
Posted Apr 29, 2019
A- Avengers: Endgame (2019) Joe Gross Which is to say, if you think you need to see "Avengers: Endgame," you absolutely, positively need to see "Avengers: Endgame." EDIT
Posted Apr 24, 2019
Thriller (2018) Matt Shiverdecker Jackson isn't reinventing the genre here (in fact, the story wears its influences like "Halloween" and "Prom Night" directly on its sleeve), but he provides a talented young cast and some genuine scares to make this a fun watch. EDIT
Posted Apr 21, 2019
C The Curse of La Llorona (2019) Natalie Mokry The story hits all of the beats expected from a horror film, with nothing particularly inventive along the way, but Chaves has an astute sense of how to continuously amplify the scares. EDIT
Posted Apr 18, 2019
Pet Sematary (2019) Joe Gross Kolsch and Widmyer either find new takes on old tropes or run into cliche. EDIT
Posted Mar 17, 2019
Adopt a Highway (2019) Matthew Odam We are forced to intuit backstory, motivation, fears and hopes in Hawkes' eyes. Fortunately, his eyes have it. EDIT
Posted Mar 15, 2019
Teen Spirit (2018) Eric Webb Like Robyn's heroine in that song, Violet is giving it her all. You'll feel the spirit. EDIT
Posted Mar 14, 2019
The Boy Band Con: The Lou Pearlman Story (2019) Matt Shiverdecker In this case, the truth is definitely stranger than fiction. EDIT
Posted Mar 14, 2019
() Natalie Mokry The film asks relevant questions and introduces many timely themes, which is an admirable feat. EDIT
Posted Mar 13, 2019
Booksmart (2019) Matt Shiverdecker It's almost unfathomable that this is anybody's first feature. "Booksmart" is a perfectly constructed and confident debut that already has me excited to see what Wilde does next. EDIT
Posted Mar 12, 2019
() Addie Broyles [T]he documentary captures the feistiness and passion of the "adorable narcissist" who continues to teach cooking classes and travel to talk about her work. EDIT
Posted Mar 12, 2019
Knock Down the House (2019) Joe Gross [E]motional-without-being-overly-manipulative documentary. EDIT
Posted Mar 12, 2019
The Beach Bum (2019) Joe Gross Indeed, McConaughey, who is in virtually every frame, is really the only reason to see "The Beach Bum." McConnanerds will love it, it's likely everyone else will be scratching their heads. EDIT
Posted Mar 10, 2019
Long Shot (2019) Eric Webb As a kinda raunchy, kinda endearing popcorn flick, there's stuff to enjoy about "Long Shot." By dressing up like a movie trying to make a point, though, it just ends looking like an empty suit at its own podium. EDIT
Posted Mar 10, 2019
Running With Beto (2019) Natalie Mokry To its credit, "Running With Beto" speaks to a much larger phenomenon and moment in time. EDIT
Posted Mar 9, 2019
Us (2019) Joe Gross Mixing Cronenberg, Hitchcock and yes, a lot of "Twilight Zone," "Us" mixes rather direct allegories with a mess of images that seems designed to provoke vigorous post-view debate. (I am still trying to figure out all the stuff with the rabbits.) EDIT
Posted Mar 9, 2019
B- Captain Marvel (2019) Joe Gross "Captain Marvel" is a hero that Marvel fans deserve, even if the movie that introduces her isn't everything you want it to be. EDIT
Posted Mar 6, 2019
Todos lo saben (2018) Charles Ealy As Farhadi's first Spanish-language feature, "Everybody Knows" shows that he can excel in multiple genres. EDIT
Posted Feb 22, 2019
B Alita: Battle Angel (2019) Joe Gross Every frame is dense with visual information and even at a svelte-for-blockbusters 122 minutes, "Alita" is A LOT of movie - some of it clumsy, some of it elegant. EDIT
Posted Feb 15, 2019
2019 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Documentary (2019) Joe Gross Rarely has the short film category, especially the features and animated films, been dominated so completely by children in extreme distress and mopey narratives about aging. Some of them are extremely good. EDIT
Posted Feb 7, 2019
2019 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Animation (2019) Joe Gross Rarely has the short film category, especially the features and animated films, been dominated so completely by children in extreme distress and mopey narratives about aging. Some of them are extremely good. EDIT
Posted Feb 7, 2019
2019 Oscar Nominated Shorts - Live Action (2019) Joe Gross Rarely has the short film category, especially the features and animated films, been dominated so completely by children in extreme distress and mopey narratives about aging. Some of them are extremely good. EDIT
Posted Feb 7, 2019
D+ () Joe Gross The more one thinks about it, the more one can see a cast with this kind of talent reading the script and thinking, "Okay, that's kind of cool and trippy and MIGHT work if it's executed correctly." Alas, it is not. EDIT
Posted Jan 24, 2019
Ben Is Back (2018) Charles Ealy While viewers might feel a bit of fatigue watching the prolonged misery of "Beautiful Boy," they'll discover that "Ben Is Back" is much more action-packed. EDIT
Posted Dec 20, 2018
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) Joe Gross "Spider-Verse" isn't just one of the year's best family movies - it's the canniest, hippest and simply the best comic book movie made to date. EDIT
Posted Dec 13, 2018
B+ Boy Erased (2018) Charles Ealy Both Crowe and Kidman have the acting chops to gain our empathy, even though we may not agree with their actions. EDIT
Posted Nov 7, 2018
B+ A Star Is Born (2018) Charles Ealy Bradley Cooper wants to make you cry. And if you give him a chance by going to see "A Star Is Born," he's gonna do it. EDIT
Posted Oct 18, 2018
A- The Old Man & the Gun (2018) Charles Ealy If Redford and Spacek bring sparks to "The Old Man & the Gun," the supporting cast makes its engine hum. EDIT
Posted Oct 11, 2018
First Man (2018) Charles Ealy "First Man" is the best kind of movie. It shows us that real strength comes not from winning but from failing - and that our lives will be judged not by our triumphs but by how we pick ourselves up after tragedy. EDIT
Posted Oct 10, 2018
Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda (2017) Matt Shiverdecker For fans who have been following his music career over the past four decades, you simply cannot pass up the opportunity to watch this as soon as you can. EDIT
Posted Oct 9, 2018
B Halloween (2018) Joe Gross While not without flaw, Green and Curtis have given the original the bookend it deserves. EDIT
Posted Sep 21, 2018
C+ Fahrenheit 11/9 (2018) Charles Ealy Here's the thing: Moore constantly makes statements that are technically true but aren't entirely accurate... Fahrenheit 11/9 is full of such allegations. It will cheer the faithful but leave a lot of us wondering what Moore has left out. EDIT
Posted Sep 20, 2018
B- A Simple Favor (2018) Joe Gross For a while, A Simple Favor hums along with cheesy, thrillery affect, laying in questions-as-subplots that may or may not pay off. EDIT
Posted Sep 13, 2018
C+ White Boy Rick (2018) Charles Ealy White Boy Rick wouldn't be much without McConaughey, who seems to have perfected sleazy roles in the past decade. But even McConaughey can't elevate this tale. EDIT
Posted Sep 12, 2018
B- The Predator (2018) Charles Ealy hrow in some snappy dialogue, a cute kid, a smart scientist and a tough-guy hero, and you've got the makings of a popcorn movie. That's what The Predator is, and what it aims to be. EDIT
Posted Sep 12, 2018
A Blindspotting (2018) Joe Gross It's in this tension of hyper-reality that Blindspotting lives, saying as much as they can as fast as they can... showing you, per the title, that what you see in front of you is not always all that is there. EDIT
Posted Jul 26, 2018
B Ant-Man and The Wasp (2018) Joe Gross Ant-Man and the Wasp is a fun-sized flick. EDIT
Posted Jul 3, 2018
C+ Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (2018) Joe Gross Not nearly enough people are eaten by dinosaurs. EDIT
Posted Jun 20, 2018
B+ Incredibles 2 (2018) Joe Gross It is the rare animated feature, and the rarer superhero movie, that will leave the audience thinking, "That was a lot of fun, but I wish there was more of the raccoon." EDIT
Posted Jun 13, 2018
B- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) Joe Gross Solo is a space Western, more or less, and the more it leans into that model, the more fun it is. EDIT
Posted May 22, 2018
People's Republic of Desire (2018) Joe Gross About five minutes into Hao Wu's People's Republic of Desire... it hits you: This is a completely bonkers William Gibson sci-fi story come to life. And yet, it is happening right now. Indeed, much of this material is a few years old. EDIT
Posted Apr 26, 2018