Reviews: 20,000 Days on Earth (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

20000_days_on_earthReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 9/18/14] | Chris Barsanti @ Film Journal International
    • Excerpt: Goth rocker turned postmodern bluesman Nick Cave turns himself inside-out for this transformative, electrifying documentary about the dark and often mundane wizardry of creativity.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Joshua Brunsting @ The CriterionCast
  • [New - 8/15/14] | Simon Miraudo @ Quickflix
  • [New - 10/10/14] | Jason Pirodsky @ Expats.cz
    • Excerpt: One of the most aggressively self-indulgent things you’ll ever come across, and without anything resembling a story it eventually becomes a chore to sit through; memories of Bob Dylan’s infamous Renaldo and Clara occasionally sprang to mind.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk
    • Excerpt: …an astonishing dissection of why Nick Cave does what he does…his songs have been full of confessions, both clear-eyed and abstract, yet he’s never delved so deep nor shared so much.

Reviews: The Best of Me (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

best_of_meReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 10/16/14] | Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: The Best of Me isn’t too bad for the majority of its time-crossing story, which means the movie is better than the majority of movies based upon Sparks’ work.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Jason Pirodsky @ Expats.cz
    • Excerpt: After the utter insanity that was the final twist of Safe Haven, I didn’t think Sparks could possibly top himself; he doesn’t (how could anything top that film’s Sixth Sense-like reveal?), but the filmmakers handle the idiotic resolution here with such unblinking sincerity that we can’t help but laugh at what we’re seeing onscreen.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Every time you go to a new movie based on a book by Nicholas Sparks, you do so believing that it can’t be as bad as the last, but somehow they always manage to exceed one’s lowest expectations.

Reviews: Birdman (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

birdmanReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: The Book of Life (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

book_of_lifeReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 10/17/14] | William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: I don’t know about you and your kids, but after watching The Book of Life, I couldn’t WAIT to die. It certainly looks like a serious improvement on everything I’m doing right now.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: If only the story, which includes an awkwardly defined character called Candle Maker voiced by Ice Cube(?!), were up to its visuals.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder
    • Excerpt: While not the animation game-changer that THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS may have been, THE BOOK OF LIFE perhaps has even more room to grow into a classic in the coming years. And curiously it has a similar pedigree.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: Here is a movie of impressive imagination and surprising sympathy that still winds up feeling like the product of less pure intentions.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Kenji Fujishima @ Slant Magazine
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: n this global and interconnected time, I suppose it is about time a Mexican fairy tale complete with Mexican traditions, culture, and its people find a place on the big screen.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Brent McKnight @ Paste Magazine
    • Excerpt: Despite revolving around a formulaic love story and a climactic battle with a largely inconsequential villain, The Book of Life carves out a stunning visual niche and a fantastic world full of memorable characters that provides a different perspective than the typical animated feature.

Reviews: Fury (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

furyReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 10/17/14] | William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: It was François Truffaut who once argued that there’s no such thing as an anti-war movie. It’s a statement that may have finally been disproven by David Ayer’s Fury.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Fury has some strong, visceral moments but the odd, ephemeral characterizations at its core cause the film to vanish in a fog of war.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Tony Dayoub @ Cinema Viewfinder
    • Excerpt: Relentlessly grim, FURY makes a powerful impression, presenting the most hellish vision of World War II in American cinema since SAVING PRIVATE RYAN.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: http://www.examiner.com/review/fury-heavy-metal-world-war-ii-style
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: Fury is an unforgiving tale of warfare centered on the thesis that battle brings out the worst in men.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: David Ayer shows us a harsh and violent reality and a reminder that words in a history book will never convey just how hard it is to slog through the mud and then fight a battle.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: No better than good, “Fury” is unnuanced and not as thoughtful as it could have been, but makes up for those losses in tough, brutal intensity.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Kristin Dreyer Kramer @ NightsAndWeekends.com
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Benjamin Kramer @ The Voracious Filmgoer
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Marty Mapes @ Movie Habit
    • Excerpt: Pitt, in peak form, leads a tank crew through war and domesticity
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Piers Marchant @ sweet smell of success
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk
    • Excerpt: Writer and director David Ayer avoids the humorous camaraderie of more traditional World War II movie, instead lending real edge to the gallows humor amongst the troops and heaping doses of gore and brutality to the combat sequences. Fury is not for the weak of heart, nor for those looking for cheerleading or glorification of war
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com
    • Excerpt: Writer/director David Ayer’s World War II drama is a gritty European-style coming-of-age picture that reminds us how much war has changed in the past 65 years yet how much it remains the same.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Its traditional storytelling represents an agreeable throwback to a time when tales of combat managed to be viscerally exciting while also saying something about camaraderie and the effect of the battlefield experience on ordinary soldiers.

Reviews: The Good Lie (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

good_lieReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: Nas: Time Is Illmatic (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

nas_time_is_illmaticReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 10/2/14] | Candice Frederick @ Reel Talk
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Travis Hopson @ Examiner
    • Excerpt: A celebration of the seminal album’s 20th anniversary, but also a dissection of the influences that allowed a street poet like Nas to create such an influential album.
  • [New - 10/10/14] | Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: “Life’s a Bitch” are apt words to describe Queensbridge, but for some folks out there, it is home.
  • [New - 10/2/14] | Mike McGranaghan @ The Aisle Seat
    • Excerpt: An engaging document of how – and, more importantly, why – this particular album had such an impact.
  • [New - 10/2/14] | Aaron Pinkston @ Battleship Pretension
    • Excerpt: Nas: Time Is Illmatic, a look at the influential album twenty years later, doesn’t feel like the complete account that some may want, but it is a sharp and entertainment profile of an important artist.

Reviews: St. Vincent (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

st_vincentReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 10/16/14] | Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire
    • Excerpt: The big tearjerker ending is maudlin and manipulative, which would be a bigger problem if it didn’t totally get me anyway, sniff sniff. In that sequence, and throughout the movie, Murray elevates the material — but the scene itself is a bit worrisome, since it is, in essence, a celebration of Bill Murray, and that kind of pandering isn’t what we like about him, as a personality or an actor.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: Melfi puts in a bit more elbow grease in this tried and true concoction, to make an effective, though utterly formulaic film.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Luke Bonanno @ DVDizzy.com
    • Excerpt: St. Vincent would not be nearly as endearing with a different actor in the title role.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: A heart-affecting cinematic parable about the saints among us who enable us to come alive in new ways.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: …we’ve seen all this before (“Bad Santa” being but one example). Still, Murray is Murray and watching his sweetness peek through his outer curmudgeonly crust is worth the price of admission. More surprising is Naomi Watts…
  • [New - 10/10/14] | Billy Donnelly @ This Is Infamous
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: It gives us a character who is completely unlikeable on the surface, and without changing a thing about who the character is, the film dares us not to like him by the end.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: Bill Murray engraves his name with authority on the growing list of movie adults who should be banned from interacting with children. Picture Billy Bob Thornton’s Bad Santa, Adam Sandler’s Big Daddy, and to make sure the charges stick, we must not forget any man who has played Humbert Humbert as he helps ‘guide’ Lolita through those tough adolescent years.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk
    • Excerpt: riter/director Theodore Melfi’s major-league debut is hard to dislike and certainly will work as a crowd-pleaser for folks looking to warm their hearts. For all the salty language and Vin’s rowdy lifestyle, there is a nice message here and a genuine sense of inclusion.
  • [New - 10/16/14] | Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Bill Murray’s irascibility, even at the most mawkish moments, is enough to save the picture from drowning in a sea of sentimentality.

Reviews: Whiplash (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 16, 2014

whiplashReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

alexanderReviews for this film from our members:

  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: To those outside of its heteronormative clutches, the film plays rather like an excellent case study for theories related to population control and the weird social experiment that families tend to resemble.
  • Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: Entertaining family film based on the classic children’s book about dealing with difficulties with optimism.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” is a cute and fun – if not somewhat disposable – film that both kids and parents can enjoy.
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: a cute enough family film about empathy, but it’s based in a Disney reality where parents never snap…young Ed Oxenbould holds the center as the unfortunate Alexander.
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: [F]orces its characters into kooky scenarios with little interest if those scenarios make any sense for the characters or in any form of real-world experience.
  • Sarah Gopaul @ Digital Journal
    • Excerpt: ‘Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day’ is more succinct than its title suggests, as well as an excellent source of family-friendly entertainment.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: Bad things happening to people has been the basis for many comedies: The Out of Towners, Home Alone, etc. The cast gamely registers discomfort in awkward situations with amusing results.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: It’s strictly for kids, this very silly, mostly sweet tale of middle-school angst, with a few nonconformist hand grenades tossed in for good measure.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: Despite the obvious set ups and a day with so much stuff crammed into it for any family in the history of families, Alexander is borderline recommendable for those with kids.
  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day is actually pleasingly solid family entertainment that even makes some bold (or questionable) choices within the Disney banner to go with its accident-filled, “jumping from the frying pan into the fire” plot. If that’s what a pleasant surprise sounds like, then we’ll take it.
  • Josh Spiegel @ Movie Mezzanine
  • Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Though one can name lots of worse family movies, if not horrible, terrible, and very bad this one is–considering its pedigree and the quality of the cast–disappointingly mediocre.

Reviews: All Cheerleaders Die (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

all_cheerleaders_dieReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: The Blue Room (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

Reviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: The Dance of Reality (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

dance_of_realityReviews for this film from our members:

  • Joshua Brunsting @ The CriterionCast
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Indulgent, Felliniesque, funny, sad, philosophical, political, religious and some might even say incestuous, Jodorowsky’s latest features the filmmaker as the compassionate guardian of his 8 year-old self
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Carlos del Río @ El rincón de Carlos del Río [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: La danza de la realidad peculiar y personal lo es mucho, y de vez en cuando tiene grandes ideas y momentos, pero el conjunto es demasiado caprichoso y disperso.
  • [New - 8/28/14] | Mathieu Li-Goyette @ Panorama-cinéma [French]
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Gregory J. Smalley @ 366 Weird Movies
    • Excerpt: The hallucinogenic excesses of 1970’s ‘El Topo’ and 1973’s ‘The Holy Mountain’ have been replaced with a mellower style that suggests Jodorowsky has moved away from the testicular filmmaking of his youth, and closer to the intellectual playfulness of late Buñuel or Ruiz. This new, wiser Jodorowsky is wistful, less willfully obscure, and, most importantly, much funnier…
  • Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com
    • Excerpt: Hopefully, “The Dance of Reality” will usher in more films from a brave filmmaker whose imagination, inspiration, and execution is pure.

Reviews: Dracula Untold (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

dracula_untoldReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 10/9/14] | Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: While its title will open it up to a countless number of snarky comments, perhaps now that we’ve reached the Untold region we don’t have to march on into the Retold territory.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: Even if “Dracula Untold” isn’t the greatest version of the Dracula legend, I welcome it as a reboot of this shared universe from the 1940s.
  • Bill Clark @ From The Balcony
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Director Gary Shore and screenwriters Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless meld history with mythology for an entertainingly cheesy period fantasy adventure cum origin film grounded by a committed performance by Luke Evans as Lord Impaler.
  • Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: It’s tempting, if facile and snarky to say “Dracula sucks.” But…
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: [W]hat we get is an overly familiar Dracula movie that lacks a distinguishing personality.
  • James Jay Edwards @ FilmFracture
    • Excerpt: ‘Dracula Untold’ Shows A Kinder, Gentler Prince Of Darkness
  • Sarah Gopaul @ Digital Journal
    • Excerpt: ‘Dracula: Untold’ entirely reimagines the famed vampire’s origin story, updating the tale for an audience raised on spectacle over subtlety.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: Is it damning with faint praise to say that this horror fantasy doesn’t totally suck?
  • Vadym Grygoriev @ kinoblog.com [Ukrainian]
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: A solid action fantasy more elemental and visceral than I expected, thanks to the potent presence of Luke Evans.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: Dracula Untold isn’t a tale that had to be left untold, but couldn’t someone have told it in a less stiff way? At least Luke Evans is the hunkiest Vlad the Impaler this world has ever seen.
  • Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys
    • Excerpt: Breathes new life into an otherwise tired stomping ground, taking this story back hundreds of years and delving into the unknown origin story of the innovator himself, Mr. Dracula.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Jason Pirodsky @ Expats.cz
    • Excerpt: Bram Stoker’s creation enters the world of George R. R. Martin in Dracula Untold, a supposed vampire movie that features precious little gothic horror, and instead combines Game of Thrones theatrics with epic (but bloodless PG-13) Braveheart-styled battle sequences. Terrific. This is exactly what Dracula fans have been clamoring for.

Reviews: The Judge (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

judgeReviews for this film from our members:

  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: Groaning beneath the weight of its desperate grandstanding for awards consideration, David Dobkins’ The Judge launches a continuous covey of clichés at you as it vacillates between middlebrow familial melodrama, murder mystery, and half-baked courtroom drama.
  • Luke Bonanno @ DVDizzy.com
    • Excerpt: The Judge is severely lacking the intelligence and excitement we expect of courtroom dramas.
  • Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: Drama about the transformation of a smart and slick Chicago defense lawyer during a visit to his small Indiana hometown.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: tries too hard with too much to deliver too little
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: Time and again, the writers attempt sleight of hand – tossing out ideas in order to upend them with a different revelation – but the tactic doesn’t work and Dobkins’ direction of plot is ungainly.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: A deliberately manufactured, self-conscious class act from beginning to end, this dysfunctional family drama has been cast like a Yankees’ World Series contention team, photographed by Steven Spielberg’s cinematographer and scored by a 12-time Oscar nominee. Director David Dobkin (“Wedding Crashers,” “The Change-Up”) is attempting something more ambitious here, and he keeps his ducks in a row, but “The Judge” relentlessly refuses to pass up any opportunity to remind the audience they’re watching a movie.
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: Screenwriters Nick Schenk and Bill Dubuque are working under the misapprehension that having things happen to a character is the same as developing that character…
  • Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: Robert Downey Jr. and Robert Duvall team up together for the first time in this sentimental journey, following a prodigal son from sin to redemption.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: The prodigal son returns is frequently a crowd pleaser and Downey and Duvall will entertain you with their version of it.
  • Ben Kendrick @ Screen Rant
    • Excerpt: ‘The Judge’ is a very familiar tale of a man that finds humility in a return to his hometown – albeit one with a few genuinely powerful moments of drama.
  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: A slick, sturdily performed middlebrow melodrama that meanders a bit and overstays its welcome, “The Judge” is just fine. If nothing else, Robert Downey Jr. gives this overlong, schmaltzy material a shot in the arm with his no-bull charisma.
  • Kristin Dreyer Kramer @ NightsAndWeekends.com
  • Pat Mullen @ Cinemablographer
    • Excerpt: ‘The Judge’ plays it safe and pleads ‘no contest’. Nothing risked is nothing gained.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema
    • Excerpt: The Judge resembles those John Grisham thrillers that were popular in the 90s before the public came to the realization that he was basically telling the same story over and over. This is not a Grisham thriller, it’s actually better because it has more investment in the characters. Yes, it’s about a big criminal trial but that’s only a backdrop. It’s just as effective as a human drama.
  • Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Slick but superficial and overloaded with cliches…entertaining enough, but in a shallow, manipulative fashion.

Reviews: Kill the Messenger (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
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Published on: October 9, 2014

kill_the_messengerReviews for this film from our members:

  • David Bax @ Battleship Pretension
    • Excerpt: There are ways in which both fictional and documentary films can bring the truth to a life that is bigger than the facts alone. Kill the Messenger is just an adaptation of a Wikipedia entry.
  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: Avoiding the trap of a procedural, Cuesta’s film feels very much like an intimate character drama spliced with its overarching message concerning easily manipulated media frenzies and the undiscussed corruption going on within our governmental agencies.
  • Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: A drama made memorable by a Jeremy Renner’s mercurial performance as the passionate investigative journalist Gary Webb.
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: What’s missing is some expression of the emotional and psychological toll on Gary beyond the basic acknowledgement that these events are affecting him…
  • Candice Frederick @ Reel Talk
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: Suspenseful political thriller, focusing on the fate of yet another truth-seeking whistleblower.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: The subject remains strong enough to recommend but Kill the Messenger is too choppy to rank as one of the harder hitting political thrillers.
  • Kristin Dreyer Kramer @ NightsAndWeekends.com
  • Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com
    • Excerpt: “Kill the Messenger” is a frustrating movie. It fails both as a brief biopic and as a political thriller. It works somewhat as a sketch character study, but that’s not enough to satisfy a movie audience.
  • Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: A solid fact-based period piece…anchored by a vivid performance from Jeremy Renner…a welcome throwback to the days of activist Hollywood David-vs.-Goliath films.
  • Andrew Wyatt @ St. Louis Magazine
    • Excerpt: Director Michael Cuesta and screenwriter Peter Landsman have difficulty structuring the story to best exploit its intrinsic drama, leaving Messenger feeling somewhat lumpy.

Reviews: Men, Women & Children (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 9, 2014

men_women_and_childrenReviews for this film from our members:

  • Jason Bailey @ Flavorwire
    • Excerpt: Following last year’s bizarrely tone-deaf adaptation of Joyce Maynard’s ‘Labor Day,’ Reitman’s latest is a peculiarly alarmist ensemble piece about how, in spite of our copious technology, we’re all just so disconnected, man. When Reitman burst on the scene with ‘Thank You for Smoking’ back in 2005, he seemed bent on making another ‘Dr. Strangelove'; based on his new picture, he’s apparently spent those years harboring the desire to make another ‘Crash.’
  • William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: The kids are all right. The internet is all right. It’s this dreary, futile, meandering movie that sucks the life out of everything.
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: I didn’t like this movie when it was called “Disconnect,” and cowriter/director Jason Reitman’s (“Juno,” “Labor Day”) adaptation of Chad Kultgen’s novel lays on pretension masquerading as deep thought for an even less convincing mix
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: Considering its lack of concern in addressing a solution to the problem it raises, the movie’s fascination with masturbation is appropriate.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: Jason Reitman is way too young to have produced a work of such fuddy-duddy handwringing over These Kids (And Adults) Today and how we play with our e-toys.
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: Future Reitman analysts will have his early period to begin their dissections and then will move on to his films which feel aimed at his neighborhood Rotary Club, which feels like the only demographic Reitman will end up scaring here.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: Critically, “Labor Day” was unfairly mocked because it was filmmaker Reitman in a different, more earnest mode, many claiming that he was losing his way and his spiky edge. Correction: “Men, Women & Children” is his first miscalculation.
  • [New - 10/17/14] | Kristin Dreyer Kramer @ NightsAndWeekends.com
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Jamie S. Rich @ DVD Talk
    • Excerpt: Given the fact that Men, Women & Children has a kind of a forest-for-the-trees thing happening, it’s not surprising that some details are lost in the earnest pursuit of so many others. The problem that co-writer and director Jason Reitman has, though, isn’t that he can’t see the forest, it’s that he thinks he does, and he ignores the good trees within it by trying to have it all
  • Frank Swietek @ One Guys Opinion
    • Excerpt: Banality posing as profundity.

Reviews: Annabelle (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

annabelleReviews for this film from our members:

  • José Arce @ LaButaca.net [Spanish]
    • Excerpt: Exploit/spin-off nacido a la sombra del éxito comercial de “Expediente Warren” que ofrece todo lo que uno podía esperar de un proyecto así: nada. Mala desde el guion, mala desde la dirección, mala en general.
  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: Basically another bargain basement housewife-in-peril horror film
  • William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: Annabelle boasts a couple of effective “boo” scares – there are so many that a few were bound to land by default – but the only “boo” that matters is the one you’ll yell at the screen after this thudding, laughable bore finally cuts to the credits.
  • Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: I find myself enjoying the slow-burn nature of these movies and the attention to detail in terms of set design, atmosphere, lighting and the sound mix. It’s a huge step up from found footage, which relies on exactly none of these things (and in fact rejects them as a whole in the genre).
  • Laura Clifford @ Reeling Reviews
    • Excerpt: It doesn’t help that the doll, conceptualized as it was in “The Conjuring,” starts off looking like Chucky’s demented cousin painted up like a demonic tart before it’s even been made a vessel of the devil…
  • Andy Crump @ Movie Mezzanine
    • Excerpt: …there are a limited number of ways in which a demonic doll can be frightening, particularly when said doll looks like it was made in Evil Co.’s nightmare factory, on an assembly line manned by Satanists.
  • Jim Dixon @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: “Annabelle” is a self-styled prequel to last year’s horror hit, “The Conjuring.” It isn’t as smart or well-acted, but it does get the job done. Comedies are about making us laugh and horror movies are about making us jump, and “Annabelle,” if not a wall-to-wall jump fest, does have enough good ones to be a successful spook show.
  • Billy Donnelly @ This Is Infamous
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: [P]erhaps the movie’s biggest surprise is that it isn’t entirely pointless.
  • James Jay Edwards @ FilmFracture
    • Excerpt: James Wan Gives The People What They Want – ‘Annabelle’ Gets Her Own Movie
  • Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: A tedious, strictly superficial fright-flick…
  • Jeremy Kibler @ The Artful Critic
    • Excerpt: In the end, “Annabelle” cannot be denied the handful of jolts it plants, but one still gets the nagging suspicion that even the rosy-cheeked, pigtailed star will see more than a few missed opportunities in her own vehicle.
  • Brent McKnight @ Beyond Hollywood
    • Excerpt: If you think making a feature length movie of the backstory of a creepy doll might be stretching the concept a bit much, you’re correct.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Ross Miller @ Thoughts On Film
    • Excerpt: Nothing more than a cynical and pointless cash-in on an already successful entity.
  • Stefan Pape @ HeyUGuys
  • Jason Pirodsky @ Expats.cz
    • Excerpt: A spookily effective supernatural tale self-destructs during the final act in Annabelle, a follow-up to last year’s The Conjuring that successfully employs many of that film’s hauntingly understated techniques but devolves into unadulterated silliness by the end.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Diego Salgado @ Guía del Ocio [Spanish]

Reviews: Gone Girl (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

gone_girlReviews for this film from our members:

Reviews: Hector and the Search for Happiness (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

hector_and_the_search_for_happinessReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 9/25/14] | Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: A snappy and satisfying adult parable about a therapist’s quest to find the meaning of life.
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Sarah Gopaul @ Digital Journal
    • Excerpt: ‘Hector and the Search for Happiness’ is a yuppie’s humorous escape from life’s responsibilities in the guise of a research trip to investigate an abstract idea.
  • [New - 8/15/14] | MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: A rich white man tours the misery of others to learn about happiness. Yes, it is as offensive as it sounds.
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Ben Kendrick @ Screen Rant
    • Excerpt: ‘Hector and the Search for Happiness’ includes laughs and relatable drama but struggles to find successful balance between engaging journeys and thought-provoking destinations.
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Tom Santilli @ Examiner.com
    • Excerpt: I had little patience for Hector and the Search for Happiness and its manipulations, despite liking Simon Pegg, Rosamund Pike and having been drawn in by the film’s first 20 minutes or so.

Reviews: Jimi: All Is By My Side (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

jimi_all_is_by_my_sideReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 9/25/14] | Chris Barsanti @ Film Journal International
    • Excerpt: John Ridley’s fractured and narrowcast, unauthorized Jimi Hendrix biopic (read: no Hendrix compositions) wrongly assumes that André Benjamin’s intuitive inhabiting of the musician’s skittish soul will entice audiences as much as it does the women around him.
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
  • [New - 9/26/14] | Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat @ SpiritualityandPractice.com
    • Excerpt: A quirky and appealing glimpse into the life and guitar virtuosity of Jimi Hendrix.
  • [New - 10/2/14] | Travis Hopson @ Examiner
    • Excerpt: All is By My Side amounts to a series of imagined conversations, with Andre Benjamin struggling to hold our attention through them.
  • [New - 8/8/14] | Bev Questad @ It’s Just Movies
    • Excerpt: Ridley’s film is a shocking biopic starring André Benjamin – who becomes Hendrix. From the soft voice, skinny body, and constant gum chewing to the groundbreaking guitar work, Benjamin pegs the Hendrix we all loved.
  • Ron Wilkinson @ MonstersandCritics.com
    • Excerpt: A powerful look at the crucial years in an artist’s trajectory when the thrill of success begins to yield to the curse of fame.

Reviews: Left Behind (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

left_behindReviews for this film from our members:

  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: The end of times is here again with Left Behind, heralded by the presence of Nicolas Cage as a faithless pilot, sputtering about in the continued Humpty Dumpty phase of his grimacing career.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Kevin Carr @ 7M Pictures
    • Excerpt: It’s preachy, it’s dull, the characters are one-dimensional and no one acts remotely realistically. In the end, “Left Behind” scares me for the End of Days because it’s the most boring version of the Rapture I could have ever imagined.
  • Mark Dujsik @ Mark Reviews Movies
    • Excerpt: [T]he movie is just too silly, roundabout, and bungling to feel anything other than a little pity for it.
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Susan Granger @ www.susangranger.com
    • Excerpt: Faith-driven audiences deserve better…
  • Charlie Juhl @ Citizen Charlie
    • Excerpt: What is Nicolas Cage doing in this movie? Check out the movie poster and look at his face; even he has no idea how he wound up headlining such an awful film, even by his recent low standards.
  • Pat Mullen @ Cinemablographer
    • Excerpt: Top Ten Signs that Nic Cage is the Rapture

Reviews: Pride (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

prideReviews for this film from our members:

  • Nicholas Bell @ IONCINEMA.com
  • [New - 10/9/14] | Mark Hobin @ Fast Film Reviews
    • Excerpt: Pride fashions a narrative much in the way a powerful sports movie works. It creates a David and Goliath story and invites you to cheer for the underdog.
  • MaryAnn Johanson @ FlickFilosopher.com
    • Excerpt: One of the rare movies that gets absolutely everything right, bursting with happy-tears emotion about solidarity, friendship, and smashing bigotry.
  • Darren Mooney @ the m0vie blog
    • Excerpt: A great deal of…
  • Cole Smithey @ ColeSmithey.com
    • Excerpt: All attempts fail at forcing a by-the-numbers narrative template on a fact-based story about unlikely bedfellows uniting against Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s mid ’80s reign of anti-union and anti-gay rhetoric and public policies.
  • David Upton @ So So Gay
    • Excerpt: One scene, a quiet scene involving the making of the most weakly flavoured sandwiches you may ever see, typifies the film’s wonderfully observed character interactions, putting together two characters we’ve barely seen interact but know have a deep history (it’s hard to avoid in a village this tight-knit) for a gentle revelation that lies at the heart of the film’s understanding of the world.

Reviews: To Be Takei (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

to_be_takeiReviews for this film from our members:

  • [New - 8/22/14] | William Bibbiani @ CraveOnline
    • Excerpt: If you don’t know George Takei, and you will never be asked to come over to his house for tea and a pleasant conversation, then To Be Takei is probably the next best thing.
  • [New - 8/21/14] | Kristy Puchko @ CinemaBlend.com
    • Excerpt: To Be Takei is radiant with the joy of the man has captured the hearts and imaginations of untold fans. It left me smiling ear to ear, and with some serious food for thought.
  • [New - 10/2/14] | Francis Rizzo III @ DVDTalk.com
    • Excerpt: George Takei is more than Sulu and “Oh my”
  • [New - 9/4/14] | Jerry Roberts @ Armchair Cinema
    • Excerpt: For those who only know Takei as Sulu, the documentary To Be Takei comes as sort of a cold water treatment. It is a history lesson, the fascinating story of a man who fought a personal battle on three fronts, as an Asian, as an actor, and as an activist for gay rights.
  • [New - 8/28/14] | Jordan M. Smith @ IONCINEMA.com
    • Excerpt: With To Be Takei, director Jennifer M. Kroot compounds the actor’s life and career into a 94 minute portrait of virtuous celebrity, glorifying the man’s faith in humanity while reluctant to give any real critique of his public or private persona.

Reviews: The Two Faces of January (2014)

Categories: 2013 Films
Comments: No Comments
Published on: October 2, 2014

two_faces_of_januaryReviews for this film from our members:

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