Charles Robison's Profile - Rotten Tomatoes

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Rating History

The Panic in Needle Park
2 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

No doubt about it, this tragi-romance isn't an attractive story... but Al Pacino and Katie Winn deliver such outstanding performances that it's hard not to fall in love with the characters and their starry-eyed descent into agony. The movie is hardly a knock-out tale, sometimes feeling a little rote (like Law and Order without the address *DUNDUN* black screens that inform you when/where the events took place, skipping from scoring to jail back to scoring in the matter of a few scenes) but it's contents still give new and unrestrictive looks into the ugly life of the "germs" in Needle Park in the 70's. Not worth it for movie-goers who like a narrative arc and some music in their movies, but definitely worth it for Pacino and Winn's dynamic portrayals of the depressingly hard-knock life of addicts in 70's NYC. 3.5/5 Just be sure to wash this down with something way more lighthearted and optimistic, cause it's one whopper of a dark film.

Horns (2014)
2 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

An interesting premise (hey, what if Harry had turned into Voldemort?) that doesn't lose it's cool factor thanks to some good scripting and obvious, yet imaginatively shot magical 'what if' scenarios. Radcliffe (and the rest of the cast) are compelling, SPOILERS AHOY but once the eventual unveiling of his demonic powers happens, the scripting fizzles and creates a fastidious (yet, to the movie's credit, still not cliche) wrap-up that can leave some (including almost everyone on RT, yikes) wanting more.

Coherence (2014)
2 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

A cooler (and deeper) take on 'Sliding Doors' that makes for a fun bit of mindfuckery... making for a 'could happen anywhere/anytime' feel that holds on for awhile after the end. What could have been a trite piece of 'low-budget found footage' Hollywood pablum ends up being a solid mystery/thriller that doesn't fall into any of the cliche traps that plague the handicam genre. Highly, highly recommended.

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
2 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

What's to like - Smaug's big scene (did anyone else think Sean Connery should have been Smaug? No one?...ok, moving on...), Gandalf's rescue from the Necromancer, and Martin Freeman's excellent anchoring performance as Bilbo (who gets shuffled around a bit for the sake of other dramatic arcs, but is without a doubt still the heart of the story).

Unfortunately, the CGI is basically what continues to drag this trilogy down, and that's mostly my only gripe - some characters are wholly greenscreen creations, while others are plagued by 'uncanny valley'-esque visages that don't quite look like fantasy characters or real people from either respect (sadly, one of those blobs is Billy Connelly, who really shouldn't need any 'shopping in order to look like a dwarf, amirite). Overall, the intended audience is going to drool over all the epic Orc battling, and hardcore Tolkienites will find some manner of enjoyment (aside from every scene involving Tauriel and Legolas) from within the CGI-laden 'epic'-ness. LotR will always trump this trilogy, no question, but there's a whole movie's worth of warmth and energy to keep this fan afloat.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
3 years ago via Rotten Tomatoes

Though this portion of Jackson's grand take on Bilbo's quest still feels aimed towards younger audiences (and if you weren't already aware of that after the first installment then you're probably one of those younger audiences), the director ultimately delivers to we die-hard Tolkien-ites with an excessively good portion of Smaug, hopefully tiding everyone over until the next movie. 3.5/5 Also, the new elements weren't too out of place: though Evangeline Lilly's character arc carries no heft alongside the rest of the narrative, I'm mostly glad they cobbled her in if only because there is a serious dearth of female voices in this trilogy, Legolas proves that elves were the first to introduce skateboarding to Middle Earth, and Gandalf's side-quest to drum up 'The Necromancer' is an exciting storyline that adds to the mythology without bringing it down. Overall, this is a definite improvement from the adventures of the first, but not enough to surpass the epic epic-ness of LotR. Here's to the wrap-up, unless they decide that the next movie should be split into two parts...