Journal and Courier (Lafayette, IN)
" "Maleficent" is rather good, mostly because of Jolie. She does grab your attention. But, overall, the movie lacks the Disney charm that has carried its fantasies - live action and animated - into the hearts and minds of viewers."
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)
" "Spider-Man 2" lacks focus. ... Is it a love story about the challenges of being a superhero and having a girlfriend? Or is it the standard superhero vs. a cadre of crazed super-villains action feature?"
Draft Day (2014)
"As if the behind-the-scenes, same-day machinations that lead up to the NFL draft are not enough, its writers, Scott Rothman and Rajiv Joseph, pile subplot upon subplot, until they nearly bury the film's main storyline."
Ernest & Célestine (2014)
Bad Words (2014)
"Bateman's directorial debut is solid. He seems on sure footing behind the camera. If only he had been up to suppressing the nice guy within, "Bad Words" could have achieved a distinctive level of satire and black humor."
"Aronofsky's Noah, as portrayed by Russell Crowe, is a darker, more flawed protagonist. He goes about his task with a single-minded obsession, a devotion to duty, that supersedes his commitment to his wife and children."
Le passé (The Past) (2013)
300: Rise of an Empire (2014)
"(Eva) Green ... is the main reason to see "Rise of an Empire." Her Artemisia is a cold, cruel, merciless and deadly commander who brooks no opposition from anyone, whether it is a subordinate or an enemy."
The Wind Rises (2014)
" "The Wind Rises," nominated for an Academy Award as best animated feature, is a visual delight, with bright pastoral colors, clouds that float like ballerinas and clear, blue skies that envelop you."
"The movie gives off a vibe as if it were written in reverse. After all, Anderson and his screenwriters had a slam-bang finale. They just didn't pay much attention to the first three-fourths of the film leading up to the apocalyptic climax."
Lone Survivor (2014)
The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
August: Osage County (2013)
Saving Mr. Banks (2013)
American Hustle (2013)
Dallas Buyers Club (2013)
"McConaughey brings an unbridled fury and passion to his performance. His Woodroof is no saint, but he slowly moves from entrepreneur to a compassionate individual who makes it his mission to try to ease the suffering of others."
Thor: The Dark World (2013)
12 Years a Slave (2013)
"Ejiofor's performance is the heart and soul of the movie. He is transformed from a carefree and happy family man to a downtrodden individual who has the hope for rescue continually quashed or beaten out of him."
Ender's Game (2013)
"Despite its taut action sequences and strong special effects, the movie is ultimately depressing and bleak. It fails to reach any dramatic heights and seems spiritless, possibly because of its subject matter."
Escape Plan (2013)
Captain Phillips (2013)
" This matter-of-fact thriller disdains sensationalism. Yet, the situations have you holding your breath as each new challenge or obstacle impedes the astronauts as they use their knowledge to find ways to stay alive."
Metallica Through the Never (2013)
"The film's art-house sensibility separates it from your run-of-the-mill studio melodrama, as does the care Vileneuve takes to create multidimensional and complex characters whose flaws are at times reprehensible, despite their altruistic motives."
The Spectacular Now (2013)
"Unlike other teen movies, director James Ponsoldt has molded characters that seem real; they are not exceptionally sculpted or beautiful. He gets his young actors to believably express the confusion and insecurities that are prevalent among teenagers."
Blue Jasmine (2013)
Kick-Ass 2 (2013)
"Like its predecessor, "Kick-Ass 2" subjects its audience to some over-the-top, bloody and gross violence. ... But it is performed in such a pleasing, comic-book manner that you can't be repulsed nor offended."
Lee Daniels' The Butler (2013)
The Act Of Killing (2013)
"Everything in "Planes" is predictable and formulaic. The characters representing the planes of various nations are all basic stereotypes. Nothing is left to chance; everything is made easy so the kids will have no trouble following along."
Fruitvale Station (2013)
2 Guns (2013)
I'm So Excited! (2013)
Red 2 (2013)
Pacific Rim (2013)