movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year Review
57% The Tree of Blood (El árbol de la sangre) (2018) "The Tree of Blood" is always lovely to look at, but, at times, it's like wandering into somebody else's family reunion, where strangers are arguing intensely about people you've never met. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 14, 2019
No Score Yet Parkland: Inside Building 12 (2018) [T]he simplicity of "Parkland" is often quite affecting. Minn doesn't strain to make any political point, or try too hard to manipulate the viewer into an emotional response. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 14, 2019
No Score Yet The Bellwether (2019) "The Bellwether" suffers from intense self-importance; and too much of the film consists of the heroine defending her life and rebutting her torturer with familiar feminist/humanist talking-points. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 14, 2019
67% Yucatán (2018) It's meant to be a throwback to glamorous old Hollywood movies. Like a typical American pleasure cruise, it's a serviceable facsimile of something fancy. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 14, 2019
38% A Violent Man (2019) Writer-director Matthew Berkowitz's crime drama "A Violent Man" has all the pungent cynicism of a classic film noir but lacks the urgency. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 8, 2019
No Score Yet The Amityville Murders (2019) Frankly, "The Amityville Murders" feels like a missed opportunity. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 8, 2019
65% St. Agatha (2019) This is a bold, broad portrait of a secret society, left alone by the government to rule their own roost by fear. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 8, 2019
No Score Yet The Isle (2019) The picture's a pleasure to watch throughout, largely because of Eilean Shona. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 8, 2019
94% The Golem (2019) A well-crafted and idiosyncratic supernatural thriller, the film plays like a mix of "Frankenstein," "The Witch," and some of the Coen brothers' more explicitly Jewish movies. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 31, 2019
65% Velvet Buzzsaw (2019) While the art world caricatures are hardly fresh, there's a lot about "Velvet Buzzsaw" that's pretty savvy and even inspired. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2019
No Score Yet The Bounty Killer (2019) Though the locations and the cast look just right, the rudimentary story and draggy pace makes this movie more of a western "exercise." - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2019
No Score Yet Goodnight, Charlene (2019) We just watch the characters sit still and talk, as though if they got up and actually did something this whole ramshackle movie would collapse around them. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2019
88% The Final Wish (2019) By the time "The Final Wish" gets to the much more effective suspense sequences - and the enjoyably perverse twists - it's too little and too late. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2019
67% Ánimas (2018) The Spanish spook show "Ánimas" is so powerfully atmospheric that it barely matters when the rest of the picture turns out to be a bit sparse. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2019
57% Dead Ant (2019) The film is unapologetically "low art" ... yet fun, in its own way. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 24, 2019
No Score Yet The Last Man (2019) The premise is effectively eerie; the presentation depressingly sloppy. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2019
No Score Yet Split Lip (2019) [A] film that's generally likable but ultimately too slight and derivative to recommend. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2019
No Score Yet The Brawler (2019) "The Brawler" isn't terrible, but those with any interest at all in Chuck Wepner should start with one of the many better options. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2019
38% Close (2019) "Close" works well when it sticks to the distinctive personal details of this kind of job; but it too often defaults to a run-of-the-mill international thriller. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2019
77% Pledge (2019) The characters and premise of "Pledge" are over-the-top, but the movie understands that - whether comedy or horror - all these stories are really about a desperate yearning for belonging. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2019
84% Rust Creek (2019) Director Jen McGowan and screenwriter Julie Lipson take too leisurely of an approach to a story that should be more taut, but the attention they pay to characters and setting makes a difference in how the movie plays out. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2019
No Score Yet Alone in the Dead of Night (2019) The meager plot strains for relevance; but Tammie Bergholdt is very good as a single woman tormented by her own fears, and the Castanos show a knack for maximizing the minimal. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2019
No Score Yet Tall Tales from the Magical Garden of Antoon Krings (Drôles de petites bêtes) (2019) Even the preschool-aged fans of French picture-book writer-illustrator Antoon Krings will likely be bored by "Tall Tales," a funny-animal movie with a convoluted plot. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2019
45% Ashes in the Snow (2019) Markevicius and Jones find meaning in the small moments of humanity within the horrors of war - those times when the oppressed and even the oppressors get a chance, just for a little while, to be people. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2019
No Score Yet Against the Clock (2019) [W]hile this movie is pretty incomprehensible, it's at least memorable. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2019
No Score Yet Mojin: The Worm Valley (2019) It's more a hodgepodge of second-hand chase scenes and spectacle, borrowed from better action-adventure pictures. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
87% The Vanishing (2019) There's just something about lighthouses that inspires good psychodrama. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
38% State Like Sleep (2019) Dunluck over-complicates this muted slice-of-life, but a good cast mostly holds it together. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
10% Holmes and Watson (2018) "Holmes & Watson" is more of a well-meaning misfire than a total train wreck. It's frustrating mainly because all of these folks can do much better. They can be a lot Daffier. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 26, 2018
67% Swing Kids (2018) Though a bit longer than necessary, the movie tells an engaging, enjoyable story, peppered with impressive dance numbers. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2018
33% Between Worlds (2018) Writer-director Maria Pulera aims for something with the comic grotesquerie of David Lynch - full of eccentric lowlifes and identity swapping - but a more straightforward plot. What she ends up with is ultimately too tame and under-thought. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2018
6% American Renegades (2018) Quale and his crew clearly want this to be a good old-fashioned two-fisted caper, but the pacing is leaden and the plot lacks imagination. Worst of all, nobody really bothered to give the picture an angle. It's all straight, flat and dull. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2018
35% Dead in a Week (Or Your Money Back) (2018) "Dead in a Week" strains too hard to find the lighter side of professional murder - like a Coen brothers version of "John Wick," but without the inspired touch of either. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
40% Blood Brother (2018) "Blood Brother" is just a compendium of pulp clichés, with nothing to say about these characters or the worlds they inhabit. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
67% Default (Gukgabudo-ui Nal) (2018) "Default" successfully turns a global financial crisis into a movie that's at once engaging and educational. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
90% Ghostbox Cowboy (2018) The movie is unique, and often off-putting, in ways that should be exciting to open-minded cinephiles. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
44% DriverX (2018) Drawn from the filmmaker's own experiences, "DriverX" is a collection of hit-and-miss anecdotes, organized around the idea of what "work" means in the 21st century. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
No Score Yet 8 Remains (2018) It's hard to say exactly what's going on in "8 Remains," an offbeat suspense picture that has more in common with vintage European art cinema than Alfred Hitchcock - although quality-wise, it's not up to the level of either. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2018
No Score Yet 12 Round Gun (2018) Well-made, but uninspired, the film is too enamored of "sensitive macho man" clichés. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2018
No Score Yet Texas Cotton (2018) The cast of "Texas Cotton" is good company, and the location's a nice place to hang out for an hour and a half. But all these nice folks are worthy of more than such a flat, featureless story. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2018
No Score Yet Tinker' (2018) By the time the "Tinker" fantasy elements kick in, they seem more like an afterthought than the reason this movie was made in the first place. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2018
No Score Yet Astral (2018) "Astral" gives fans of American cable TV dramas a chance to hear some familiar actors speak in their natural English accents. Beyond that, this high-toned genre exercise is low on novelty - not to mention jolts. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 21, 2018
91% Widows (2018) Like McQueen's Oscar-winning 12 Years a Slave, what stands out most about Widows is how the director takes a story that's often violent and despairing - and focused on social inequities - and makes it downright exhilarating. - Nashville Scene EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 15, 2018
No Score Yet Speed Kills (2018) A featureless knockoff of seemingly every sweeping true-crime movie of the past three decades. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
14% Welcome Home (2018) Strong lead performances by Aaron Paul and Emily Ratajkowski are squandered in "Welcome Home," a low-tension suspense picture with pretensions of saying something profound about broken relationships. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
94% CAM (2018) An at-times too-elusive but overall engaging peek behind the curtain at the lives of "cam girls." - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
58% Mobile Homes (2018) But while the story's a little shaky, Poots is outstanding; and de Fontenay has a terrific eye for the details of a drifter's life. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
74% The Clovehitch Killer (2018) First-time feature director Duncan Skiles brings some spooky atmosphere to a smart script by Christopher Ford. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2018
23% Here and Now (Blue Night) (2018) "Here and Now" uses one woman's sudden awareness of her own mortality as an excuse to focus intently on the many moments of intense emotion that make up a day in the big city. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2018
22% River Runs Red (2018) The entertainment value's low in this pointed crime thriller, which saves its action sequences until right before the closing credits. - Los Angeles Times EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 8, 2018