nannalauren's Movie Ratings - Rotten Tomatoes

Movie Ratings and Reviews

Trainwreck
Trainwreck(2015)
½

The trailer looked fantastic, but I was underwhelmed by the actual movie. Such a tease... maybe that was a clever thematic move? Who knows.

Avengers: Age of Ultron
½

Eh. Mediocre. Not sure how they watered down Joss Whedon's usual witty banter, but they did.

Ex Machina
Ex Machina(2015)
½

This was pretty intense. Lots of intellectual/philosophical/psychological layers. Probably some plot holes, but the artistry and storyline served as sufficient distraction. Best of all, this movie *****SPOILER ALERT***** introduces the concept of "disco non sequitur" as comic relief. Excellent performance + brilliant timing.

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 1
½

Meh. This one was a pretty crushing disappointment in comparison to the first two.

Her
Her(2013)
½

A really lovely and thoughtful look at human emotions and relationships. The only problem is I don't know how it ends yet bc there was a fire alarm at the movie theater. TRUE STORY. Stay tuned.

The Punk Singer

Pretty typical documentary in format, etc. Definitely worth viewing if you have any sort of attachment to Kathleen Hanna, though!

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

People keep saying this one is better than the previous one. This is 1) true, and 2) pretty sad.

Inside Llewyn Davis

Lovely and wistful, just like a folk song. How artful art thine Brothers Coen?

A Beautiful Mind

Saw this in the theater and was much more enamoured of it then. Somehow I managed to overlook the overt cheesiness the first time around - I guess a compelling story and strong leads will inspire forgiveness?

The Five-Year Engagement

Rare case in which the trailer looks meh yet the actual film is delightful. High point: Emily Blunt SLAYED me with her (spoiler alert) Cookie Monster impression.

Man of Steel
Man of Steel(2013)
½

Too much action, too little plot development. That sounds like a review for porn, so 2.5 stars is actually quite generous.

Tiny Furniture
½

Lena Dunham is incredibly polarizing. Personally I'm in the "Lena is amazing" camp, and thus thought Tiny Furniture was brilliant. The dialogue in particular is spectacular! I also love that she's made it OK for a 22-year-old woman to be brazenly self-absorbed and confident, yet physically "imperfect" and whiny. Having spent way too much of my 20s feeling insecure, worried about what others were thinking about me, and preoccupied with body image, I think this is at least a twisted version of progress. Here's to women just being themselves, and expecting others to just get the f*k over it.

The Hangover
The Hangover(2009)

i hear this is hilarious

Knocked Up
Knocked Up(2007)

Funny! Tésting accânt mørks. Wöwîeeee!

Marvel's The Avengers

Particularly interested to see what the confluence of Joss Whedon and Robert Downey, Jr. will bring.

54
54(1998)

Lots of substances, little substance. I maintain that Boogie Nights cornered the market on "quality movie with a disco soundtrack."

Water
Water(2005)
½

I've now seen Water and Earth, and if it's fair to extrapolate from those I'd say Deepa Mehta is an aesthetic genius. The movies are beautiful, intense, and passionate, and leave you sort of awestruck by the end.

Rock of Ages
Rock of Ages(2012)

Eh. Mediocre, though Tom Cruise was fantastic as the Rock God. That's a true compliment, as I'm not usually a TC fan.

The Perfect Storm
½

Clunky exposition, way too much hand-holding, and way, way, way too many moments *fraught with meaning.* The most interesting part was noting that George Clooney looks much more attractive sopping wet, and Mark Wahlberg much less.

The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2

Creatures of the night, millennia-old feuds, humans with superhuman qualities... this could be killer material if they gave it to, say, Joss Whedon. Instead the dialogue is cheap, the scenes are patched together with some sort of cinematic Krazy Glue, and the music is awful. It held my interest throughout, though, and the chemistry between Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson is impressive. All told - I guess that evens out to three stars?

Looper
Looper(2012)
½

Well, I wasn't totally blown away or anything. I mean - a time travel movie without a DeLorean? What? However, I do adore Bruce Willis, and Emily Blunt was pretty badass here. Aside: am I the only one who kept thinking "If you build it, he will come?"

Mona Lisa Smile
½

Charming, but not shallow. Not quite, anyway. It's also a rare example of a movie in which I don't find Julia Roberts's character to be cloying and irritating. That combined with Kirsten Dunst's wicked ice queen performance makes the move pretty watchable.

Dancer in the Dark

Stunningly sad. Sadly stunning. It will crush your soul, but you'll appreciate the execution.

Pitch Perfect

Aca-larious! Really and truly. And yes, I was surprised by that.

Finding Nemo
Finding Nemo(2003)

FISH ARE FRIENDS NOT FOOD

The Amazing Spider-Man
½

Underwhelmed. AG was super, but the dialogue was AWFUL. Painful. If you see it on the big screen, go all the way and go IMAX so the CGI will distract you from the dreadful writing.

When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts
½

A lot of stuff you likely already know about a horrific tragedy, but well-organized and shared in excruciating detail. Powerful on many levels.

Moonrise Kingdom

Classic Wes Anderson. Perfectly orchestrated, with incredible attention to bizarre detail.

John Carter
John Carter(2012)
½

The movie that destroyed an entire quarter of Disney :-/

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
½

At the risk of sounding like a total moron with no appreciation for subtlety, I thought this movie was insanely boring.

The Hangover Part II

I would rather be bludgeoned over the head by Mike Tyson than watch this again.

Shame
Shame(2011)

Aside from his addiction, everything about the main character is presented as beyond reproach. He's an attractive guy with a good job and an great apartment, and is the respectful counterpart to his boss's sleazy, adulterous antics. Removing the ability to see him as creepy overall makes it easier to comprehend exactly how much he is out of control when it comes to his compulsive sex life. It's incredibly sad to see someone with everything going for him, except for a baseline inability to connect to others in a healthy way. I knew this wouldn't be uplifting, but it was disturbing on a different level than I expected.

Monsoon Wedding

I'm pretty sure I owned this movie on VHS, right around the very last gasp of that particular medium. Now I've purchased it in digital format and watched it on Flixster! It's my own personal constant through the evolution of home entertainment. Also - in case my multiple purchases didn't clue you in - it's a fantastic movie, in every possible way.

The Cabin in the Woods

Five by five. Very Buffy-esque, except without Buffy.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
½

There are bone-chilling, seriously depraved levels of misogyny in this film, which is really hard to watch. However, it's amazing to see a female protagonist who not only takes care of herself (no knight in shining armor here!) but is also smarter, more talented, and more interesting than every other character.

The Hunger Games

A few years from now when the hype is forgotten, the one thing that will truly stand out here is Jennifer Lawrence. My main complaint is that the film feels more tied to MPAA compliance than delivering the story well. A movie about children hunting and killing each other should be more visceral and disturbing experience - the fact that it's not becomes the disturbing element (I do understand why this is the case, but I don't award stars for capitalistic motivations). I will, on the other hand, give a full half star for JL's performance - she is incredible. She carries more emotion in her stoic performance than the rest of the movie put together.

Pulp Fiction
Pulp Fiction(1994)

Brilliant. I love the way the stories intersect, and the characters are all very memorable and well-played in some quirky/sexy/repulsive and/or absurdly violent kind of way.

21 Jump Street
½

Jeepers. This movie was really good!

Hugo
Hugo(2011)

Ehhh.... slow. Too long, especially for children (isn't this supposed to be a kids' movie?). And I found it to be a bit heavy-handed with the magicalosity. Beautiful, though, and the plot twist was pretty cool.

Rachel Getting Married
½

This movie is about a girl who is a train wreck, but is not a Train Wreck. It is also full of endearingly quirky and eclectic characters who are not Endearingly Quirky and Eclectic. In other words, it's not manufactured.

The Artist
The Artist(2011)

{"Gasp!" } ..... {"Oscar-worthy, for reals"} ..... {The End}

17 Again
17 Again(2009)
½

Formulaic presto-change-o time machine switchy-roo story, BUT it's well realized, has characters who speak Elvish, and Zac Efron is uncannily good at sounding just like Matthew Perry. Minus 1/2 star for lame double standard dating/sex stuff, BUT maybe that's part of being formulaic. Sigh.

Dog Day Afternoon

Drop-dead spectacular. In every way. And my newest goal in life is to watch every single movie that has ever featured Al Pacino .

The Ides of March
½

I went on a road trip once that necessitated driving diagonally through Ohio. Mid-state we were tantalized by the ever-tempting Target, and stopped to buy snacks and whatnot. When we got back in the car, WE COULD NOT GET OUT OF COLUMBUS, OHIO. We kept missing the highway entrance, pulling over to look at the map again, cursing at each other (my brother is especially inventive), and then getting stuck again. Overall, we had a lovely time in each others' company (road trip!), but the near-misses were maddening. This story, of course, is an allegory for The Ides of March, which also takes place in Ohio. Only watch it is you like the cast and don't mind being stuck in Ohio for awhile.

Last Days of Disco

I enjoyed this. It's basically a post-college coming-of-age movie with a disco backdrop, and is put together more thoughtfully than your usual film of that genre. Kate Beckinsale is fantastically bitchy, and Chloe Sevigny is just as awesome as she always is when she's being awesome.

Beauty and the Beast
½

Tale as old as time⦠can't help but hear that charming song in my head when I think of this movie. The anthropomorphic tea kettle et al are super cute, too. However â" and yes, I KNOW this is a Disney movie and not meant to be overthought â" but the whole Stockholm Syndrome romance is a bit unsettling. C'est la vie. Such is the world of fairy tales.

Gandhi
Gandhi(1982)

It took me ages to watch this, I think mostly due to fear of all the ways it could go terribly, terribly wrong. Happily, it steers clear of both Hollywood fluff and heavy-handed moral bludgeoning to just nudge along a story that can tell itself. Minus one star, though, for the 3+ hour runtime (this movie brought to you by Ritalin!).

Underworld: Awakening

Based on a quick scan of the other three titles, this series appears to be one of those embarrassing McMovie situations: throw a lot of money behind a cheap, low-quality product and become stupendously wealthy.

Milk
Milk(2008)
½

Watched this again on Christmas Eve. It was the perfect choice for a girl raised heathen, but with an appreciation for the Christmas spirit. Poignant, uplifting, and meaningful, and wow did Sean Penn pour his soul into being Harvey Milk.

Blow
Blow(2001)
½

I'm sure there's a lot to love and hate about George Jung, but this is so factual and whitewashed it's basically a chronological list of his achievements. It's like trying to learn who someone really was by reading his obituary.

A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas
½

I wish I could call this highly recommended, but really it's just above half-baked. Killer 3D though, better than some action movies I've seen. And no, I wasn't hallucinating.

In Time
In Time(2011)

This movie was boring. Honestly. Just a series of underwhelming moments that kept me wondering when it would be over. My two biggest complaints: putting Justin Timberlake in a movie with awful music, and not modeling Amanda Seyfried's character after Patty Hearst.

The Virgin Suicides
½

Icky and objectifying and voyeuristic, which I guess is the point.

Moneyball
Moneyball(2011)

Great story told in baseball game format: it lopes along with no-frills dialogue, adds a few well-placed zingers, then somehow affects an emotional investment in something that should be ungodly dull.

The Matrix
The Matrix(1999)

Who doesn't like The Matrix? Apparently Android, as it autocorrects to "The Married."

Horrible Bosses
½

I watched this entire mediocre movie on: ultraviolet.flixster.com! Flixster on iPhone! Flixster on Android! It was mediocre on all of them! However: Flixster streams movies! Yeah!

Trainspotting
½

Passed the decade+ test, meaning it was just as good freshman year in college as it was yesterday. Not a glamorization of drug use by any means, but unlike, say, Requiem For A Dream, it adds some humor and charm to the depravity. Tack on excellent music and Ewan McGregor awesomeness and you have⦠4.5 stars!

Man on Wire
Man on Wire(2008)
½

Stunning. The documentary does justice to the act itself, which is an, uh, tall order.

Breakfast at Tiffany's

The first problem I have with Breakfast at Tiffany's is (of course) the over-the-top racist Mickey Rooney character. Different era or no, it's painful to watch. The second problem is that, for women, it idealizes a lifestyle centered around superficial attractiveness, manipulation, and financial dependence on men. Sure, the main character isn't presented as exactly functional, but women still want to be Holly Golightly. She's lovely and charming, but a terrible role model overall.

Drive
Drive(2011)
½

Very elegant, and I grudgingly include in that statement the shocking level of violence. Wow. Not for the faint of heart, but this movie was really beautiful on all fronts.

Blue Valentine
½

"How do you trust your feelings when they can just disappear like that?" "I think the only way you can find out is to have the feelings." It's about the process.

Contagion
Contagion(2011)
½

One of those weird scenarios in which a compelling premise and spectacular cast wind up in a lackluster film. In short, it's the movie version of elevator music.

A Clockwork Orange

I wrote a paper on this in college. I don't remember what it was about. I also dont remember much about the movie. I know this is shameful, given that it's a classic and all. Whatever. I got an A, that was my main concern. I'll give it three stars for that.

Captain America: The First Avenger
½

Totally nailed the following: Invincible Superhero; Snappy, Smoldering Love Interest; Mysterious, Benevolent Doctor With Foreign Accent; Creator of Awesomely Futuristic Devices. Floundered a bit in the area of mixing up action-packed fun with not action-packed fun. Bonus: there was a one frame in the middle that was such a pure representation of a comic book panel I am giving it its very own half star.

The Anniversary Party
½

I remember being very impressed by the characters, and thus the acting, but only mildly enamored with the story itself.

Crazy, Stupid, Love.
½

About carving a little bit of lovely out of a lot of awkward, and then figuring out how to hang onto it.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2
½

I think Hermione is a microcosm of the entire Harry Potter experience: book-smart, but also meticulous in execution and very good under pressure. Seriously, I can't believe that eight movies in they've managed to keep millions of J.K. Rowling fans happy *and* craft movies that are standalone excellent. Nicely done in general, and yeah - this last one is just the right amounts epic and heartwrenching. See it in IMAX, it's worth the investment.

Friends With Benefits
½

The fact that such a snappy, heartwarming, and relevant movie exists in a world where "It's Complicated" is a relationship status proves that, in the event of a nuclear war, the rom-com will be left standing proud.

Benny & Joon
Benny & Joon(1993)

[Spoiler alert] This movie motivated me, along with a high school friend, to iron our own grilled cheese sandwiches. We spent the next hour scraping the resulting goo out of said appliance. In short: bad influence for bored, short-sighted teenagers.

Independence Day
½

Summer blockbuster, meaning lots of action with plot being secondary. Actually, that also describes porn. Interesting parallel...

The Big Lebowski
½

The Dude abides. Always.

Gone With the Wind
½

As God is my witness, I will admit there is a place in my heart for this spoiled, conniving Southern belle.

Clueless
Clueless(1995)

"And in conclusion, allow me to remind you that it does not say 'RSVP' on the Statue of Liberty." It's always nice to indulge in the fantasy that complex, icky political topics can be easily resolved with time left over to go shopping.

Blades of Glory

Not perfect, but cleverly done and very funny. A good choice if you need a pick-me-up, or just a couple hours' distraction from reality.

He's Just Not That Into You
½

A lot of meh. The best part is Drew Barrymore's adorable rant about how it's now necessary to check numerous communication portals to find out whether you've been rejected.

Midnight in Paris

Woody Allen's brand of charm has a weird, magical X-factor, so it's only right that this movie is about a quirky guy who stumbles into his fantasy world via an unexplainable time warp.

Dangerous Liaisons

I like to live in a world in which everyone is lovely and pleasant, and rainbows and unicorns and goodwill abound. If I had to see the world as depraved and manipulative, though, I'd hope the evildoers were as attractive and cunning as the characters in this movie.

X-Men: First Class

I liked this movie. I was surprised. The moral of the story is: if you are like me - female, have never read a comic book in your life, and generally aren't too keen on violence, you might like it too.

Bridesmaids
Bridesmaids(2011)

Most hilarious. I haven't been this wrong about a movie since I Love You Man. I have seen the light: a gender specific wedding-themed movie can be genuinely funny and insightful.

Notes on a Scandal
½

Judi Dench and Cate Blanchett are amazing in this movie. And by "amazing," I mean terrifying. Highly recommended, but very unsettling.

Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure

Deserves either one star or five stars for what it did for 1990s teen lexicon. I will thus give it a sort of triumphant four.

Thor
Thor(2011)
½

Two wins here: 1) the effects, especially in the unearthly realms, were beautiful; 2) they found a preternaturally attractive guy to play Thor, and he had a convincingly godlike demeanor. However, I thought the story dragged a bit, and I was horrified by the quality of some of the dialogue. Seriously, I think they were trying to suck the Harvard out of Natalie Portman and replace it with Stepford sitcom-speak.

POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold
½

In retrospect, I think it would have been a good idea to sneak into this movie without paying. Nothing about it is so awesome it mandates a big screen, and the anti-capitalist statement would have been, well, priceless.

Something Borrowed

I have a strong history of strongly disliking all movies that involve Kate Hudson, with the possible exception of Almost Famous.

Winnie the Pooh
½

I heart Winnie the Pooh. I hate that stupid song.

Fast Five
Fast Five(2011)

There are so many of these it's starting to look like the SAW series.

Pump Up the Volume

Dark and sexy - teen angst with a killer soundtrack. Basically, the anti-Bieber.

Hanna
Hanna(2011)

Starts out slooooowwwww, but develops into something just as badass as promised. It's also unexpectedly hilarious, has a great score, and does awesome stuff with color. Finally, it's a cosmically just scenario in which the female leads are amazing, with the main guy being somewhat competent eye candy.

The Ice Storm

Depressing as hell, but really lovely.

Mermaids
Mermaids(1990)

A silly movie. Decent-ish.

Monster
Monster(2004)
½

Charlize Theron was amazing in this. And by that I mean terrifying.

The Adjustment Bureau

Perhaps you have questions like... which will make me happier, love or professional accomplishment? Do I have free will, or is my fate preordained? If so, rest easy knowing that The Adjustment Bureau will spoon-feed you the answers.

Easy A
Easy A(2010)

I found bits and pieces of this movie to be charming and hilarious, but far too much to be grating and contrived. I was also a little disappointed that the modernized everything but the actual scarlet letter - S for Skank would have been far more consistent.

Bridget Jones's Diary

I think an actor's ability to embrace and conquer awkwardness can make or break a movie. Bridget Jones's Diary would be fair to middling without Renee Zellweger, but with her talent in scenes like the excruciating "Greatest Book of Our Time" speech, it's middling to memorable.

Hilary and Jackie
½

I saw this in the theater, apparently thirteen years ago, and I can still hear the concerto that plays throughout the film. I don't know if this is more attributable to Elgar or to the actual Jacqueline du Pre who played it, but the movie complements this piece perfectly. Lovely, haunting, sad, and worthy of a replay.

Hairspray
Hairspray(2007)

I can't possibly rate a movie with lines like "if you protest, you'll be on lists!" and "more people are breathing more aerosol than oxygen!" less than four stars. And this is a coming from a person who has just made a tentative foray into the world of musicals.

The King's Speech
½

Colin Firth completely owned this role - body, soul, and excruciating stammer. This is a good thing, because otherwise even Geoffrey Rush couldn't have saved the film from being, well, excruciatingly dull.

Winter's Bone

I'm hard-pressed to decide whether I'd rather be in an enclosed space with Hannibal Lecter or a backwoods swamp with one of Ree Dolly's relatives. Bred and buttered, indeed.

March of the Penguins

Heartwarming, heartwrenching, etc. What I mainly remember a few years after watching this, though, is that penguins have a stunningly inefficient system of producing offspring.

The Devil Wears Prada
½

The thing I like about this movie is that the so-called frumpy girl goes glam because she starts to see fashion as an art form. So many comparable films just make that girl shallow and conformist as if this is some sort of grand accomplishment.

Spellbound
Spellbound(2002)
½

If I ever become a stage parent, I want to be an overzealous spelling bee mom.

Black Swan
Black Swan(2010)

I am completely blown away by the performances in this movie, not to mention the attention to detail. I will also say that Darren Aronofsky must have one hell of a creepy mother.

The Fighter
The Fighter(2010)

Can't resist the hype?

Atonement
Atonement(2007)

Riveting. It's beautiful, and the story moves along quickly and unpredictably.

Say Anything...
½

Does anyone remember anything about this movie aside from John Cusack serenading⦠what was her name? If so, please enlighten me as to why this movie is so popular.

Capturing the Friedmans

I was working at a rape crisis center when I saw this movie, which undoubtedly colored my perception of the film. However, I'm not sure if it was in a biased-against-the-accused manner or more of an "OK, this is one more thing to add to the weight of all the unpleasant sh*t I've seen this year" Regardless, I know I walked out of the theater feeling some combination of angry and numb. Not to mention really irritated at the guy who kept laughing throughout the movie. Because, you know, pedophilia is hilarious.

Four Weddings and a Funeral

I adore this movie. Many critics push it into the category of wittier-than-average fluff, but I think it has more substance than most comedies. Don't get me wrong â" it is indeed hilarious, but also has one of the most (painfully) beautiful funeral scenes I've ever watched on screen. I will concede that a few scenes drag, and that it's a little cheesy here and there. However, I still watch it every few years. It has yet to disappoint.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Anyone who does not like this movie has a heart three sizes too small.

Alice's Restaurant

If I could enter in this box twenty-seven eight-by-ten colour glossy photographs with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each outlining my review of this movie, I would. However, I'll just have to explain that the photos would be sort of mediocre, but with an endearingly nostalgic feel.

The Piano
The Piano(1993)
½

I saw this when it came out seventeen years ago. I don't remember it very clearly, aside from it being super-intense and really beautiful, and that the lead actors were fantastic. Really wild, by any definition.

Reality Bites
½

Ooh baby I love your way... like Lelaina Pierce, I was seduced by obviously half-baked sincerity. Why did I watch this again? Should've been a one night stand.

2 Days in Paris

Á Paris, ah Paris. Relationship humor, awkward social situation humor, culture clash humor, and dirty french humor. Fun for the whole family.

Volver
Volver(2006)

Excellent. Penélope Cruz is awesome, and who doesn't like a good ghost story? Thank you, Pedro Almodóvar.

The Putin System

Le Système I suggest: do not allow a former KGB spy to become president. However, great comic relief provided by footage of Dubya and Putin tooling around in P's vintage car before plotting to take over the world. That is, before P realized that Dubya is dead weight and decided to do it on his own.

Revolutionary Road

"You want to play house, you got to have a job. You want a nice, sweet house, you got to have a job you hate." If you have any interest or current investment in the American Dream, do not watch this movie. You will go home and impale yourself on a white picket fence. Depressing or not, beautifully done.

Heathers
Heathers(1988)

I once heard this described as "chalkboard noir", and that sums it up pretty well.

Twin Peaks - Fire Walk with Me
½

Like all David Lynch films, this leaves the viewer with two options: 1) pretend you know what happened and string together a bunch of big, pretentious-sounding words to explain it; 2) admit you're clueless but note that he did a good job of whatever he was doing.

Hot Tub Time Machine
½

One star for awesome premise. -1 because it's only been 5 days and I've already forgotten most of it. +2 for great performances from the leads. -2 for misogyny and homophobia (no, going back in time isn't an excuse). +1.5 for John Cusack, whose filmography qualifies as a time machine in itself. +1.5 for a bunch of hidden refs to other time travel movies. -1 for being subjected to JC's 1986 gf. Half a star for that True Love/Mean Girls actress, who is cool. Even if my math is off, I'm giving it 2.5 stars. So much for quantifying stuff.

The Good Girl

This movie was truly amazing. Jennifer Aniston was phenomenal, and I can also say that every other lead character was expertly played. Zooey Deschanel? Fabulously dippy and funny as usual. Jake Gyllenhaal? Intriguing, then eccentric, then crazy; consistently HOT. John C. Reilly? Heartwrenchingly clueless and well-meaning. Mike White? Skeezy bastard. Highly recommended.

WALL-E
WALL-E(2008)

Dialogue is indeed overrated.

Thelma & Louise

Classic. Any movie that makes me angry, sad, and giddy with excitement in the space of two hours is excellent in my book.

Girls Rock!
Girls Rock!(2007)

"It was very chaostic." Fantastic rockin' fun.

Be Kind Rewind
½

Insanely, bizarrely hilarious.

Coal Miner's Daughter
½

First off, Loretta Lynn and her life story are pretty awesome. Second, Sissy Spacek sang her heart out and very convincingly Honky Tonk'd her way to an Oscar. I'd say she deserves it on the same level Hilary Swank earned hers for Boys Don't Cry, and that is my highest possible compliment.

Harold & Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay
½

I hereby invoke Harold & Kumar in honor of election day. May they continue to represent the war on the war on terror, the right to inhale, and the revival of Neil Patrick Harris's career. Hopefully next time in a better movie.

A Streetcar Named Desire

Incredible acting, music, everything. And jeepers, Marlon Brando was hot. I think KalvinEllis said it best: "Nowadays we live in a time when? people say Robert Pattinson is a sex symbol. Seriously, what happened to humanity?"

The Lives of Others

Simultaneously heartwrenching and uplifting. The characters are complex, the storyline is riveting, and it provides a dramatic but believable view of a fascinating bit of history. Beautiful.

Chloe
Chloe(2010)

At first I loved this film for its similarities to The Ice Storm; then I hated it for taking all of that beautifully constructed, complex suburban repression and spinning it into a cheap, shallow mess.

Bigger, Stronger, Faster*

Interesting rundown on the steroid debate. This has basically no relevance to my life, so I won't get all judgy. I will, however, give it an entire star for the part where they show how you can sell capsules full of flour to people paying $60 a bottle to get big and strong, based on before and after pics shot on the same day.

St. Elmo's Fire
½

A conundrum in which one finds very engaging characters in a film consisting of poorly executed melodrama.

Crumb
Crumb(1995)

I saw this film when I was 16. I would say I was too young for the material, but I don't think anyone is capable of watching this without feeling unsettled. The mantra "artistic merit. artistic merit." only works for so long before you succumb to "pervy psychotic misogynistic freak" and want to place a popcorn box over your head to hide from permanently scarring cartoon images.

Boogie Nights
½

It seems highly improbable that a movie steeped in both disco and porn would be top-notch in every way. Well, guess what? It is.

Traffic
Traffic(2000)
½

I saw this in the theater a couple of lifetimes ago, and it's stuck in my head ever since. I watched it again the other day, and was again struck by how well the stories interweave, the film's emotional pull, and the quality of the acting.

The Nanny Diaries
½

I was looking for something light, fluffy, and mind-numbing. This turned out to be dreary, clunky, and vaguely irritating. It was nicely framed with an anthropological take on wealthy Manhattanites, but even that came off as heavy-handed. I'm not horrified, but I am disappointed.

The Alps
The Alps(2007)

Holy IMAX landscape shots! The Queen soundtrack was a little disconcerting, though.

Elizabeth
Elizabeth(1998)

Rich colors and oh-so-dramatic depictions of the most dramatic of the early moments of the not-so-Virgin Queen's reign. Excellent use of the lovely Cate Blanchett's unusually symmetrical features. Historically accurate? Who cares, so long as people don't actually believe that it is.

Inception
Inception(2010)
½

I fell asleep during this movie (I am not making that up), so it was like a dream within a dream within a dream within a movie. And when I woke up, it felt so real. Or maybe unrealâ?¦

Cyrus
Cyrus(2010)
½

Loved this for many reasons, but especially for the awesome depictions of awkwardness.

Toy Story 3
Toy Story 3(2010)
½

I would say Pixar specializes in tearjerkers, but Pixar actually specializes in stunning animation, enchanting stories, spot-on moments of hilarity, engaging characters, and willing suspension of disbelief. In other words, all-around awesome.

Who Killed the Electric Car?

I don't remember the answer to this question, even though I watched the whole thing on the big screen. Good to ask the question in general, though.

Super Size Me
½

A nicely documented kamikaze mission in the name of good health.

Exit Through The Gift Shop
½

If you find Banksy to be off-putting, don't worry - Banksy does figure in the film, but almost as a red herring. The real draw is an egocentric moron (or genius?) who is wildly entertaining to watch. Also, there is a red elephant. How fun is that?

Kick-Ass
Kick-Ass(2010)
½

Hit-girl is my new überhero. Not that Kick-Ass wasn't pretty awesome, too.

Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
½

I was impressed by both the quality of the film and how it made economic jargon sound like it had some relation to English. I also walked out of the theater in a blind fury after two hours of watching people behave like greedy, sleazy, sub-human criminals.

Fantastic Mr. Fox

I fell asleep during this movie.

The Hurt Locker
½

The Hurt Locker was depressing as hell, but it's great to see a war movie present action-packed and highly emotional scenes without being EPIC. Epic isn't real, and the Iraq war is, and the people at the front lines deserve better than to be distilled into Hollywood-ized caricatures. Beautifully done on all fronts.

The Namesake
The Namesake(2006)

Kal Penn did a great job of portraying a series of phases in the title character's life, and the film itself untangles a complicated issue quite beautifully. I'd equate the flow of the movie to a baseball game - it feels lazy, but it's moving toward resolution in a very structured way.

Bowling for Columbine
½

I remember that some parts of this movie were informative, and some hilarious. So yeah - I was entertained, my opinions on firearms were validated, and I walked away with some shiny new arguments on a subject wholly theoretical to me.

However, the part that sticks out (spoiler, obv.) is when he took the kids who were injured in the shooting to the KMart headquarters and stayed until they agreed to ban handgun ammunition. The fact that the making of this film resulted in a victory like that - and also empowered victims of a related tragedy - makes me happy.

Lymelife
Lymelife(2008)

sucks to have your town synonymous with a disease. better than Ebola though, I guess.

Juno
Juno(2007)

I did think a lot of the dialogue was over the top, but Ellen Page's delivery was pretty awesome. I can respect that. As for the basic message of the film, it makes some excellent observations about love, commitment, and how appearances can be deceiving.

Fragments
Fragments(2008)
½

well, I haven't seen this movie. but flying sounds nice.

Confessions of a Shopaholic

I like pretty things & shiny stores & shoes & stuff, and I thought I might enjoy watching a fluffy movie about a girl who shares these interests. So I rented the movie on iTunes, made it through half, and then it expired because I forgot to go back to it. I wasn't sad.

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

I am revising this review and wish to repost it. OK, go.

When Harry Met Sally
½

This movie is really well done. I don't agree with the whole "men and women can't be friends" thing, but whatever. They made their case most charmingly.

Bruno
Bruno(2009)
½

This was brazenly funny, yet not brilliantly funny. After all the hype, I was not impressed. And I would say I have a hard time imagining what SBC did to avoid an NC-17 rating, except that the movie itself pretty much answered that.

Romeo + Juliet

This reminds me of freshman year in college - romance, drama, 18-year-old angst. And also it came out during my freshman year in college.

You've Got Mail

I am totally infuriated by the fact that - SPOILER ALERT - MR's character winds up with TH's after his BigBoxBookSuperstore went out of its way to put her beautiful, labor-of-love, independently owned children's bookstore out of business. There's no excuse for a "feel-good" movie like this. Shameless, shameless, corporate crap.

Zoolander
Zoolander(2001)
½

worth a viewing for the walk-off. david bowie cameo = perfect.

Up
Up(2009)
½

Not a dry eye in the house, except for some in my group ;)

Mad Hot Ballroom

This was pretty awesome. It was great seeing kids from very different communities find something unlikely to unify them and create a common goal. Plus watching them actually learn to dance & seeing some of them discover a new talent was super cool.

Steel Magnolias
½

This movie has one objective: to find the lowest common denominator of Heartwrenching Stuff That Will Make You Cry. Works like a f-in' charm.

Anvil! The Story of Anvil
½

Anvil! The Story of Anvil! And Anvil! Live! Eeeeeeeeeek.

Zack and Miri Make a Porno

lotsa one-liners, many of which were funny. AWESOME porn movie titles. i'm not sure if "formulaic" is the right word, because i don't know if there are any other movies about two broke-ass friends making a porn movie, but i guess it both defines the genre and is predictable at the same time. impressive, really.

Coyote Ugly
Coyote Ugly(2000)

POUR. SOME. SUGAR. ON MEEEEEEEEEE!!!!!! Caught a bit of this on cable. Ick. Cutting off the cable.

I Love You, Man

This movie is about the dorkiest guy on the entire planet and his quest to find a male friend. It is hilarious in a most intelligent way, which is incredible because the trailer makes it look really stupid. I swore I would never see this, but a free movie pass expiring today changed my mind. Total 180. Very impressed.

Almost Famous
½

My favorite part of the movie is Zooey Deschanel's character. My least favorite part of the movie is Kate Hudson's character. If there's a director's cut somewhere that bumps up Zooey's screen time, maybe I'll go 3 stars.

Sweet Home Alabama
½

Interesting parallel between Southern girl masquerading as New Yorker/good actress masquerading as one who can only get fluffy, forgettable roles.

SLC Punk
SLC Punk(1998)
½

Fun fact: I was living in Salt Lake City during the year this movie takes place. Instead of being punk rock, I spent my days being mocked by my second grade classmates because I wasn't Mormon. Maybe if I had dyed my hair pink they would have switched things up a bit.

The International

Train of thought during the movie: Hmmm, international arms dealers. Wow, maybe i should read some Faulkner. It might be less confusing than this. Everything in this movie is either blue or gray. That's kinda cool. Or a David Lynch film. That would probably seem crystal clear. It must be stressful to be a sniper. Am I out of Orangina? Huh, now I feel like I'm in a video game. That probably means they'll make one. Stayawakestayawakestayawake. THANK YOU THE CREDITS ARE ROLLING.

The Muppet Movie

Q: Why are there so many/songs about rainbows/and what's on the other siiiiide????

A: Rainbows are visions/and only illusions/rainbows have nothing to hiiiide.

Aside: Someday we'll find it/the rainbow connection/the lovers, the dreamers, and meeeee.

Stay Tuned: It's not easy being green.

Haiku Tunnel
Haiku Tunnel(2001)

As a person who has temped in "San Franclisco", I have a special affinity for this movie. However, I did not have the opportunity to a) have an all-night adventure involving 17 Very Important Letters, b) work at a law firm abbreviated S & M, or c) impersonate a tax lawyer. This is why I enjoyed living vicariously through this delightful film.

Girl, Interrupted

Winona Ryder definitely does that wide-eyed angsty thing well.

The Break-Up
The Break-Up(2006)

This movie is 93% painful, 6% OK, and 1% delightfully awful wordplay. Because I am bad at math, this equals 2 stars.

Made of Honor
½

I hate myself for renting this.

Election
Election(1999)

Reese Witherspoon was brilliant in this.

Slumdog Millionaire
½

Brings "resourceful" to a whole new level.

Hamlet 2
Hamlet 2(2008)

I was looking forward to seeing this, but it was only eh. However, the "Rock Me Sexy Jesus" number did not disappoint.

Marie Antoinette
½

An affront to chuck taylors.

Prozac Nation
½

Underwhelmed. Liked the book, ridiculously self-absorbed protagonist and all, but this just fell flat.

Beautiful Girls
½

"Romeo and Juliet, the dyslexic version". 2.5 stars because, despite that line still being funny, it's the only thing I remember about this movie.

I've Loved You So Long

Holy Bejeebus DEPRESSING. KST does an excellent job of playing a woman who got her soul sucked out via 15 years in prison. Just picturing her (lack of) facial expressions makes me feel like I got lobotomized or something.

Slums of Beverly Hills
½

Funny. Natasha Lyonne is great. Can't believe she ended up a crack addict ... eek.

Apocalypse Now
½

Incredible film. I don't like straight-up war movies, but this isn't gratuitous at all. Yeah, it's over the top, but all accounts of the Vietnam War pretty much validate this surreal, unbelievable account.

The Last of the Mohicans
½

Everything about this movie was FRAUGHT WITH PASSION. Not necessarily a bad thing, but it could have used a few non-epic moments to balance things out.

Pocahauntus
Pocahauntus(2006)

This movie was so bad that for a few minutes we wondered if we had accidentally rented porn. I am not making that up.

Iron Man
Iron Man(2008)
½

I think that I shall never see

A movie lovely as can be.

Sex and the City
½

Mediocre. That dress was lovely, though, and worth half a star.

Baby Mama
Baby Mama(2008)

I liked the carefully embedded nod to Café Gratitude.

Happiness
Happiness(1998)
½

One of the most disturbing movies I've seen. I watched this with about half a dozen friends, and afterword we all looked at each other with the collective understanding that we needed group therapy.

21
21(2008)

Intriguing premise, but a notch below mediocre.

Requiem for a Dream

If all schoolchildren were required to watch this, we would solve the drug problem in a generation. Too bad they would also be scarred for life.

The Visitor
The Visitor(2008)
½

Amazing performances. Multiple complex & mainly platonic love stories. Nicely infuriating post-9/11 political ridiculousness.

The House of Yes

Really excellent movie, but not for the faint of heart.

But I'm a Cheerleader

Pokes fun at the degayification movement in the most adorable way.

Lars and the Real Girl

A good movie about unconditional love. No, I am not talking about unconditional love for a RealDoll™.

Get Smart
Get Smart(2008)

Snappy repartee. Terrible, terrible puns. A klutzy but lovable main character. Works for me.

Presto
Presto(2008)
½

Hilarious short before Wall•E. My favorite part was that the magician had a drawer in his dressing room labeled "underpantaloons".

Helvetica
Helvetica(2007)

This film presents the perfect opportunity to use the word "ubiquitous" in a sentence.

I was amused when I picked up my ticket and the alleged title "Heveltica" was prominently featured in some hideous font.

OMG my high school crush on David Carson was soooo validated in this film.

I think that's it.

The Promotion

Kept me awake, which is more than I can say for the last movie I saw. Lili Taylor with a Scottish accent was interesting and random.

Forgetting Sarah Marshall
½

Vaguely humorous, but I actually fell asleep in a theatre while watching this. I'm not sure if that means I'm lame or the movie is.

Twister
Twister(1996)

I miss stormy weather! Don't remember much about this film aside from the tornadoes, though.

How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days

Gender stereotypes are soooooo funny. Likewise tired, predictable plotlines. Grrr.

Dan in Real Life

I saw this two days ago and still have "Let My Love Open the Door" running through my head.

The Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult
½

I'm still laughing at the "Dyslexia For Cure Found" headline at the beginning.

Annie
Annie(1982)

Good stuff, although the scary penultimate scene caused me to cry hard enough to make my mom rethink the appropriateness of taking a 4-year-old to the theater.

The Princess Diaries
½

Three things:

1) Cheesy and stilted.
2) Horrific teenybopper soundtrack.
3) Heather Matarazzo needs to branch out.

Freaky Friday

The movie itself wasn't brilliant, but it caused me to say the unthinkable: Lindsay Lohan is actually a good actress.

I have a sinking feeling that my reviews will no longer hold any credibility.

I'm Not There

Amorphous and confusing, yet somehow aesthetically pleasing. In other words, a decent visual representation of Bob Dylan's music.

Priceless
Priceless(2006)

A funny, charming look at what happens when love gets in the way of shameless social climbing.

Office Space
Office Space(1999)
½

Umm ... yeah. I'm going to go ahead and award this movie 47,000 pieces of flair.

Two Weeks Notice

Donald Trump and Norah Jones need to be more selective about their cameos. Instant C-list.

Also - grammatical error in the title? NOT HOT.

Groundhog Day

This review is dedicated to Joe, because every day is his birthday.

A Guy Thing
A Guy Thing(2003)

This was the weekly 99¢ special. I feel totally ripped off.

Closer
Closer(2004)
½

SO INSANELY DEPRESSING. Natalie Portman's pink hair was cool, though.

Uptown Girls
Uptown Girls(2003)

Brittany Murphy's character was adorable, but most of the dialogue was strained and the whole thing was waaaaaay too predictable.

Napoleon Dynamite

I avoided seeing this, because most overly hyped stuff turns out to be a letdown. However, this was truly hilarious.

Legally Blonde

The floofy girl is also smart. Nice premise, but largely painful to watch.

Saved!
Saved!(2004)
½

It takes a certain amount of talent to make a movie about teen pregnancy funny, adorable, and poignant.

Earth
Earth(1999)
½

One of those "child's eye view of a love story in the midst of people brutalizing each other because the Powers That Be are incompetent morons" movies.

Virgin
Virgin(2004)
½

Made me simultaneously sick to my stomach and hopeful.

Boys Don't Cry
½

This movie made me hate the world for a day or two. Hilary Swank totally deserves that Oscar.

Elizabeth: The Golden Age

Loved the first movie. Eagerly rented this one. Now I want my $4 back.

American Fork (Humble Pie)

All the characters were pretty much "what you see is what you get." It was surprisingly refreshing to not have a bunch of crazy plot twists.

Eurotrip
Eurotrip(2003)

I thought I was just snobby and didn't like movies of this genre, until I indulged in the hilarity that is Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle. Now I realize Eurotrip is just lame. It turns out you can make a film like this without being homophobic and sexist.

Celebrity
Celebrity(1998)

Eh. The most interesting part was post-watching, when my friend and I considered the theme of the spurned wife getting the last laugh in the context of Woody Allen ditching Mia Farrow for her 20-year-old daughter. It's always good to see a brilliant but sleazy filmmaker mocking himself.

Vantage Point

I spent much of the movie wondering what percentage of the budget was spent on removing airbags from the cars in the 10 zillion chase scenes.

13 Going on 30
½

From this I learned that Love Is a Battlefield, that Fruit Rollups® are an excellent accessory in corporate meetings, and that mean girls are grody. Take that, beyotch.

Efter brylluppet (After the Wedding)
½

Blindingly depressing, but very well executed. Who needs to be happy, anyway?

In the Bedroom

I fell asleep 25% of the way through this. Could be because it was 3 AM. More likely because it was kinda slow.

Shopgirl
Shopgirl(2005)
½

Interesting observations on love and loneliness, and some truly outstanding cinematography.

27 Dresses
27 Dresses(2008)

Fluffy n' cute, as expected.

Match Point
Match Point(2005)
½

Excellent. Very emotionally engaging - I spent much of the film cringing and thinking "No. No - he isn't doing that. Nonono, seriously!?!" and trying to mentally will Jonathan Rhys-Meyers's character to not be a self-absorbed moron.

I Met the Walrus
½

Creatively animated & a thoughtful edit of a 20-minute guerrilla interview with John Lennon.

Madame Tutli-Putli

I'm always amazed by animation that accurately conveys human emotion. Madame Tutli-Putli achieves this so well that you almost wish it were a subpar film when she descends into her nightmare.

Cassandra's Dream
½

Woody Allen has gone in an interesting direction of late. This was strikingly similar to Match Point, but, in my opinion, not nearly as good. However, Ewan McGregor and Colin Farrell gave very nuanced and convincing performances. A good moral dilemma/what-if type of film.

Mad Money
Mad Money(2008)
½

I learned the following from this movie: 1) it is a good idea to steal from the federal reserve, because it is not hard 2) if you know your movie is kinda mediocre, you can throw in a few dozen plot twists in rapid succession to try and prevent people from noticing. All in all, good clean generic Hollywood fun.

The Golden Compass

My lasting impression of this movie is that Hollywood should wait for technology to catch up to its desire to have talking animals in non-animated films. Aside from that, I remember some cool gadgets. Overall - a little below mediocre.

Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story

This was a spontaneous "we've got 2 hours to kill! Let's go see a movie! What's playing RIGHT NOW? OK, done!" scenario. I knew nothing about the film, and was delighted to find that it was truly hilarious. Watch for the Beatles scene - priceless!

The Pursuit of Happyness
½

OK. It was great to see shots of San Francisco, i.e. "hey! that's around the corner from my apartment," and it's a heartwarming story. However, it's not amazingly crafted from any perspective, and I find plots like this to be a double-edged sword. It is inspiring to see one man triumph over enormous odds, but it also makes people who can't do this because a) they don't have genius-level IQs, or b) their circumstances are truly insurmountable, look like pathetic losers. For those with a judgmental streak, it creates another reason to blame poor people for being poor.

Grbavica
Grbavica(2007)
½

Super-good. Brilliant story that is a nice look at post-war Sarajevo. Having been in middle school during the war, much of the particulars were lost on me. This film was a great way to learn about the atrocities of that period through the eyes of a mother and daughter who survived the massacres. The only down side is that I still don't know how to pronounce the name of the film. Speak slower, people!

Sicko
Sicko(2007)

Gah. From the unnecessarily dead baby to the 9/11 volunteers left to suffer respiratory illnesses sans treatment, this film is infinitely depressing. It's basically a portrayal of how little human life is valued in this country. The most infuriating part? This is such a pervasive issue in our society that a documentary spelling it out shouldn't be such a threat to the powers that be. It should be the final nail in the industry's coffin, not just an initial smackdown.

A Mighty Heart

Very good - Angelina Jolie is excellent.

Ratatouille
Ratatouille(2007)
½

Only Pixar could come up with a movie with a rat as protagonist and make him not only symathetic, but also totally enchanting.

American Experience
½

Well. If you're gonna watch this movie, be aware of the fact that it's horrifying and depressing to the point of being mildly traumatic. I walked out of the theatre in a daze, and stayed that way for a day. It's unpleasant to see how easy it is to manipulate a beautiful idea into something ugly and oppressive. Not exactly a pick-me-up, but still compelling.

Georgia Rule
Georgia Rule(2007)

Not nearly as bad as it's made out to be. The main problem is that it tries to be all art-y with symbolism and such, but is way too transparent. I was, however, really glad to see (spoiler!) a movie that tackles the topic of childhood sexual abuse in a way that isn't victim blaming or trite.