Review: JERSEY BOYS, Oh, What a Mess...

I probably went into Jersey Boys with expectations that were too high. That's not to say I expected some grand musical masterpiece, delicately crafted and impeccably told. No, I just wanted a decent popcorn flick about a couple of wise guys... More »
  

Review: HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON 2, An Impeccably Crafted Fairy Tale

Ok, I'm a sucker for this film. There, I said it to get it out of the way. My affection for the How To Train Your Dragon series comes down to a particularly personal connection - their design for... More »
  

Review: 22 JUMP STREET, Charmingly Aware That It's A Sequel

Sequels are often rough things. Save for franchises where the expectation of similarity is baked in, the second of a kind is rarely as successful as the first. Success, of course, need not mean in terms of dollars and cents,... More »
  

Review: THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, When Tear-Jerking Is Not Enough

To paraphrase Shakespeare (badly): If you place cancer kids in front of me, will I not cry? What human being with an ounce of empathy would not be touched deeply at the sight of a terminally-ill person, especially a child... More »
  

Review: MALEFICENT Casts A Feminist Spell

Call her Beneficent. Rebooting the studio's 1959 animated film Sleeping Beauty into a live-action version suitable for the 21st century, Maleficent casts a strong feminist spell. "I don't think she's very happy," says one of the fairies in Walt Disney's... More »
  

Review: A MILLION WAYS TO DIE IN THE WEST Strikes Comedy Gold

From the opening credits of director Seth MacFarlane's latest offensive and broad comedy, it is clear that he is wearing his Family Guy hat, although one can argue it is permanently affixed to his head.The ode to the woeful Wild... More »
  

Cannes 2014 Review: FOXCATCHER Is Captivating, Rewarding

John Eleuthère du Pont, one of the heirs to the vast Du Pont fortune, had it all it seemed. Wealth almost beyond measure, he studied and wrote on ornithology and was an avid philatelist, having paid at the time a... More »
  

Review: X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST, Grim Yet Satisfactory

The makers of the latest installment of a superhero franchise based on comic book characters set themselves a tall order: a prequel that is also a sequel to more than one movie, as well as the middle installment of a... More »
  

Review: EDGE OF TOMORROW Is High Concept Sci-Fi At Its Most Fun

Tom Cruise is on fine form in the high concept sci-fi thriller Edge of Tomorrow, playing a military spin doctor in a war torn near-future, who is caught in a time loop, re-living the same day of mass carnage over... More »
  

Cannes 2014 Review: Cronenberg's MAPS TO THE STARS Gets Lost Along The Way

This doesn't bode well.For the second film in a row, David Cronenberg has made a stinker. Yes, there were some bits in Cosmopolis that didn't suck, but it was hardly vintage DC. As I mentioned in my review for that... More »
  

Review: GODZILLA Is King Of The Monsters Once More

British director Gareth Edwards makes his Hollywood debut in jaw-dropping style, bringing Godzilla back to the big screen in a grand scale action adventure that is pitched perfectly between obligatory disaster drama and indulgently delightful monster mash.2014 marks the 60th... More »
  

Cannes 2014 Review: GRACE OF MONACO Is A Risible Mess

It gives me no pleasure to say that the opening film of this year's Cannes International Film Festival had members of the press mocking it during its running time. At the second screening, when the credits rolled and the lights were... More »
  

Review: LEGENDS OF OZ: DOROTHY'S RETURN Is A Trip Worth Taking

In a period of perpetual celebration of the 75th anniversary of MGM's The Wizard of Oz -- including a glossy theatrical re-release, Disney's Oz the Great and Powerful, and a tribute at the Academy Awards -- an independently produced animated sequel... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Review: NEIGHBORS Goes Directly For The Raunch

To put it bluntly, asking why things happen in Hollywood studio comedies is besides the point. It's all about getting to the funny as expeditiously and as often as possible. Neighbors, a new Hollywood studio comedy by Nicholas Stoller, quickly... More »
  

Review: GAME OF THRONES S4E04, OATHKEEPER (Or, Hey There Chilly Men, Nice To See You Again)

Twitch continues with its ongoing series of recap / reviews of HBO's Game Of Thrones, written from the perspective of someone who has made the deliberate choice not to read the books so he can experience the series cold. Feedback... More »
By Todd Brown   
  

Review: BRICK MANSIONS Is Kind Of Fun, And Maybe That's Enough

Obviously, there's a bit of metatextual, non-diagetic solemnity to Brick Mansions, the final feature film starring one Paul William Walker the Fourth. Sure, we're going to get whatever scenes from Fast and Furious 7 they'll cobble together, but, really, this is... More »
  

Review: THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 Is A Serviceable Sequel

The sequel to the Spider-Man reboot sees Marc Webb returning to the director's chair and, ultimately, using the same tone and a very similar structure to that of the original, even though there are more subplots to deal with in... More »
  

Review: TRANSCENDENCE Tries Too Hard, Fails Utterly

Most of the ingredients are here for something special - a decent enough cast, the man behind the visuals of most of Christopher Nolan's works, and a high-concept sci-fi thriller that delves into such heady topics as "neo-ludites" and the... More »
  

Review: HEAVEN IS FOR REAL Is Filmgoing Hell

Eternal paradise is all well and good, but the notion of spending the afterlife floating on clouds while wearing white gowns, halos and playing the harp doesn't thrill people like it used to. Even organized Christianity, a wide swath of... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  

Review: Blame It On RIO 2

If kids entertainment in the 90's taught us anything, it's that recycling is an essential aspect of environmentalism. So I suppose we should be applauding Blue Sky Studios in their success at recycling so impressively many of that era's tropes... More »
By Jim Tudor   
  
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