Latest Film Reviews
Star Wars: Episode II—Attack of the Clones (2002)
It's impossible...to dismiss a film with this much
: exotic production design, imaginative characters, and a wide variety of digital jedi fu.
The Amityville Horror (2005)
Begin by blaming leads that lack charisma outside of their model bodies, move on to the cheap technique of pounding soundtrack blasts...arrive at the comically clichéd script.
William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice (2004)
Radford takes a stylish but decidedly low-key tack, demanding naturalist acting to crawl under the viewer's skin.
Todd Solondz is a man of many contradictions. Perhaps the pushme-pullyou nature of Palindromes, then, makes it the ultimate Solondz expression of his need to take his comedy black and his refusal to...
While it's a dazzling feat of screenwriting, less would be more...Still, Haggis evinces remarkable skill [and] with actors like these, who needs subtleties?
Kingdom of Heaven (2005)
A confused and confusing compromise at best and a dull obfuscation of history at worst.
It's All Gone Pete Tong (2005)
It's the risks that pay off most handsomely in
It's All Gone Pete Tong
, a curious mash-up of dance-culture mockumentary and searing biopic.
King's Ransom (2005)
Populated solely with hateful characters...strictly for connoisseurs of crass.
A Lot Like Love (2005)
Earns points for resisting the usual corny romantic comedy gimmicks (I'm looking at you,
The Wedding Date
!) for most of its running time.
Saving Face (2005)
The affectionate ribbing of the cultural milieu and Joan Chen's sly performance raise this a cut above the...[formulaic] lesbian romances and "my crazy family" comedies.
House of D (2005)
Duchovny shows signs of wit and wisdom [but this] feels much more written than lived...for every funny or gut-wrenching moment, three head-scratching ones are sure to follow.
Voices in Wartime (2005)
Making poetry cinematic requires greater imagination than King evinces...If the medium isn't always as sturdy as the message, that's a fault that can be readily overlooked.
Comme une image (Look at Me) (2005)
Look at Me
...states the film's theme: the difficulty of getting...attention and the horrible realization that, when it comes, it usually comes for the wrong reasons.
Guka Omarova's assured first feature
is a noir forced out into the sunlight.
I'd say that this mixed bag is better toted home from a video store, but Wong Kar-Wai's just not as swoony on a picture tube...cineastes, proceed with caution.
Fever Pitch (2005)
may be something short of miraculous, but perhaps it isn't how you play the game that matters after all, as long as you have a "winning" personality.
Masculine brooding [fuels]
, with its monolithic, steam-spewing tower, powered by balls, constantly rumbling out of control.
The director's Fincher-esque style may finally beat out intellectual substance, but it's a fair fight, grounded in the existential horror of essential emotional truths.
Beauty Shop (2005)
You may not "get krunked" with
, but you know what you're getting into. It's sitcom-ready material that delivers on its promise.
Here among the grapes is the flow of history, draining aging old-world tradition to its dregs as speed-oriented mass production tops it off.
Guess Who (2005)
A warm movie that's well cast and funny enough as it works through passive-aggressiveness to aggressive-aggressiveness and finally the acceptance of family.
Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous (2005)
Bullock's quippy snippiness isn't enough...If
is a consolation prize, let's hope
Miss Congenialty 2
is a parting 'gift.'
Melinda and Melinda (2005)
For all its failings...[has] enough thoughtfulness, creative energy, and comedic idiosyncracy to outpace any
modern comedies, much less two.
Der Untergang (Downfall) (2005)
A somber accounting crafted with impressive verisimilitude and anchored by Bruno Ganz's rock-solid performance as the Führer...perhaps the definitive film on its subject.
Im toten Winkel - Hitlers Sekretärin (Blind Spot) (2003)
In his brilliant Crimes and Misdemeanors, Allen's documentary filmmaker takes a job shooting a documentary about an insufferable TV producer played by Alan Alda. As an antidote, he retreats to his o...
Ice Princess (2005)
Personally, I hope the press notes for
will be the only ones this year to include the phrase "hunky zamboni driver," but you just never know.
Off the Map (2005)
The Land of Enchantment lives up to its name in this unusual and surprisingly affecting comedy-drama.
Walk on Water (2005)
Interest never wanes as this story unfolds, though [screenwriter] Uchovsky starts a lot more than he can finish satisfactorily in 104 minutes.
Holding back tears, Willis actually delivers the soon to be immortal line "Yeah, Tommy, Captain Wubba's gonna save Planet Xenon." Now, that sounds like a movie.
I'm hard-pressed not to recommend
as an energetic family-movie distraction...[but] plotting is...mechanical.
Ice Age (2002)
Sizing up fox's new animated entry Ice Age, it's hard not to think about the no-brainer formula fueling the recent, abundant output of animated kiddie flicks. Though each film has its own spin, the b...
Dear Frankie (2005)
isn't a good film, but it is a nice little movie...[about] what can happen when people become the conscious artists of their own lives.
Gunner Palace (2005)
A valuable if understandably haphazard record of the American occupation of Iraq.
remade with butter knives...takes a lazily superficial tack on the old werewolf yarn.
Dare mo shiranai (Nobody Knows) (2005)
Emotional truth and delicate visual cues distinguish a story so patiently naturalistic that the viewer will feel a part of this dysfunctional family.
Inside Deep Throat (2005)
The disconcerting examples of Damiano, Reems, and Lovelace—each, in his or her way, regretful—are the hardest pills to, um, swallow.
Diary of a Mad Black Woman (2005)
I'm not sure if
Diary of a Mad Black Woman
is heartfelt or cynical, but if anyone can write a movie that's both, it's probably Tyler Perry.
Imaginary Heroes (2004)
Comes across as patently false...are there really any suburbs in America like this one, with its family's cute, tragicomic disintegration in the wake of a son's suicide?
Because of Winn-Dixie (2005)
Because of Winn-Dixie
—based on the beloved novel by Kate DiCamillo—turns out to be a modest success for the family crowd.
Sky Blue (a.k.a. Wonderful Days) (2004)
From [its] tone-poem opening to an operatic finale,
is a visual marvel that deserves to be seen if not believed.
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