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Archive for January, 2012

DVD Report – January 31st, 2012

Far and away the best film new to DVD this week is Drive. Two of the best young talents in movies join forces to thrilling effect here, with Denmark’s Nicolas Winding Refn directing and Canada’s Ryan Gosling starring. This was one of the best films of the year, according to Criticker users. The rest of the new films aren’t too inspiring — Justin Timberlake’s In Time could be worth a look, and young horror fans who weren’t alive in 1982 might want to check out the remake of John Carpenter’s classic The Thing.

Criticker Pick!
DriveAverage Tier 7.89

A Hollywood stunt performer who moonlights as a wheelman discovers that a contract has been put on him after a heist gone wrong.
Drive @ Amazon

In TimeAverage Tier 4.17

In the future people stop aging at 25 and must work to buy themselves more time, but when a young man finds himself with more time than he can imagine he must run from the corrupt police force to save his life.
In Time @ Amazon

The ThingAverage Tier 4.27

At an Antarctica research site, the discovery of an alien craft leads to a confrontation between graduate student Kate Lloyd and scientist Dr. Sander Halvorson.
The Thing @ Amazon

Dream HouseAverage Tier 2.65

Successful publisher Will Atenton (Craig) quit a job in New York City to relocate his wife, Libby (Weisz), and two girls to a quaint New England town. But as they settle into their new life, they discover their perfect home was the murder scene of a mother and her children.
Dream House @ Amazon

The DoubleAverage Tier 3.25

A retired CIA operative is paired with a young FBI agent to unravel the mystery of a senator’s murder, with all signs pointing to a Soviet assassin.
The Double @ Amazon

DVD Report – January 24th

The best new DVD of the week is the comic drama 50/50, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt as a young man diagnosed with cancer. Mixing humor with the specter of death is a tricky task, but 50/50 manages to stay respectful to the trials of a battle with cancer, and offer some real laughs. An emotional roller-coaster which Criticker users appreciated. Check it out.

Criticker Pick!
50/50Average Tier 7.50

Adam, a 27 year old man who is otherwise in excellent health, is suddenly diagnosed with cancer. He breaks the news to his girlfriend, his best friend and his mother, who is also dealing with her husband who has Alzheimer’s disease. In the middle of it all, Adam also seeks therapy from a young and inexperienced therapist,assigned to him by the hospital, and befriends several older, wisecracking chemotherapy patients.
50/50 @ Amazon

Real SteelAverage Tier 5.12

Set in the near future, where robot boxing is a top sport, a struggling promoter feels he’s found a champion in a discarded robot. During his hopeful rise to the top, he discovers he has an 11-year-old son who wants to know his father.
Real Steel @ Amazon

Paranormal Activity 3Average Tier 4.03

In 1988, young sisters Katie and Kristi befriend an invisible entity who resides in their home.
Paranormal Activity 3 @ Amazon

The WhistleblowerAverage Tier 5.61

A drama based on the experiences of Kathryn Bolkovac, a Nebraska cop who served as a peacekeeper in post-war Bosnia and outed the U.N. for covering up a sex scandal.
The Whistleblower @ Amazon

A chronicle of the events that led to the founding of the Chinese Communist Party.
The Beginning of the Great Revival @ Amazon

DVD Report – January 17th

This week’s slate of new DVD releases is a case of extremes. On the one side, you have films like Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star, and 2011’s very worst film according to users of Criticker: Abduction. But the rest of the line-up is great. Ryan Gosling and George Clooney team up in the well-received The Ides of March, and the starkly Christian film Courageous actually manages not to stink. But the pick of the week comes out of Portugal. Mysteries of Lisbon had Criticker users united in praise.

The Ides of MarchAverage Tier 6.44

An idealistic staffer for a newbie presidential candidate gets a crash course on dirty politics during his stint on the campaign trail. Based on the play by Beau Willimon.
The Ides of March @ Amazon

AbductionAverage Tier 2.00

When teenager Nathan comes across his own childhood picture while scrolling through a missing persons website, he begins to question everything he ever took for granted — including the people he always assumed were his parents.
Abduction @ Amazon

Criticker Pick!
Mysteries of LisbonAverage Tier 7.72

Follows a jealous countess, a wealthy businessman, and a young orphaned boy across Portugal, France, Italy and Brazil where they connect with a variety of mysterious individuals.
Mysteries of Lisbon @ Amazon

Bucky Larson: Born to Be a StarAverage Tier 1.81

A kid from the Midwest moves out to Hollywood in order to follow in his parents footsteps — and become a porn star.
Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star @ Amazon

CourageousAverage Tier 6.00

When a tragedy strikes close to home, four police officers struggle with their faith and their roles as husbands and fathers; together they make a decision that will change all of their lives.
Courageous @ Amazon

Rank Films from the Recommendations Page

Here’s an improvement that’s been a long time in coming. The Recommendations Page is the landing page for registered users, where Criticker suggests a bunch of films you might want to see. Now, you can rank films that you’ve already seen, directly from this page.

We’ve also incorporated poster-sized images into the top recommendation, and cleaned up the style of the PSIs for the recommended films.

DVD Report – January 10th

There’s one clear gem among this week’s litter of new releases to DVD. Moneyball, starring Brad Pitt as the manager of the Oakland As, was a hit both with critics and at the box office. The rest of the field was much less successful with users of Criticker, though I’ll cop up a strange urge to watch Anna Faris and Chris Evans in the romantic comedy What’s Your Number?

Criticker Pick!
MoneyballAverage Tier 7.09

An all-star cast brings to life the true story of Billy Beane, a former jock turned general manager who uses unconventional methods to bring the best players to the Oakland A’s, a major league baseball team struggling against financial hardship.
Moneyball @ Amazon

Killer EliteAverage Tier 3.71

When his mentor is taken captive, a retired member of Britain’s Elite Special Air Service is forced into action. His mission: kill three assassins dispatched by their cunning leader.
Killer Elite @ Amazon

What’s Your Number?Average Tier 3.93

Anna Faris stars in this rollicking comedy as Ally Darling, a sexually adventurous twentysomething who begins to suspect that her one true soul mate may be among the many lovers she has left in the dust, including Colin (Chris Evans). Turning to her licentious neighbor for help, Ally begins a quest to locate her old boyfriends to see which one might be Mr. Right. Mark Mylod directs this rom-com based on Karyn Bosnak’s book, 20 Times a Lady.
What’s Your Number? @ Amazon

There Be DragonsAverage Tier 3.80

Arising out of the horror of the Spanish Civil War, a candidate for canonization is investigated by a journalist who discovers his own estranged father had a deep, dark and devastating connection to the saint’s life.
There Be Dragons @ Amazon

1911Average Tier 4.43

A historical drama based on the founding of the Republic of China when nationalist forces led by Sun Yat-sen overthrew the Qing Dynasty.
1911 @ Amazon

2011’s Ten Worst Movies

Here we are, the absolutely worst films of 2011, as rated by you. The Smurfs and Justin Bieber don’t make the list… but Gary Oldman and Nicolas Cage do. Our condolences go out to anyone who’s had the misfortune of seeing one of these 10 stinkers.

10. Apollo 18 – 2.75 Average Tier

“Totally Boring. You’re just sittin’ there, waitin for some suspense or shocking moments, but nothing comes around. And then, behind all those boring scenes, they are full of fails. Can someone tell how did they get the footage to earth, when they never went back to the moon?” – Fincky

9. Dream House – 2.67 Average Tier

“An absolute atrocity of M. Night Shyamalan-esque plot devices and empty, meaningless narrative methods. The stacked cast of Daniel Craig, Naomi Watts, and Rachel Weisz are completely wasted and led to give one-sided, static emotional performances reminiscent of what you might see in a cheesy, soap-opera mystery. The movie twists and twists until all of its potential complexities and themes are unwoven into a showing of simple, antiquated, and predictable suspense-less fluff.” – HiResDes

8. Something Borrowed – 2.62 Average Tier

“Holy shit, please kill me now. Not only are almost all the characters unlikable, but they are just terrible people. Even the one likable character who I will call Jim Halpert because that is the role he plays in everything (type cast much) was a terrible person. On second thought, don’t kill me, I’m already on it.” – CMonster

7. Zookeeper – 2.54 Average Tier

“Two hot women falling for a fat guy just because he is nice. That’s more unbelievable then animals talking.” – dst7175

6. Beastly – 2.53 Average Tier

“Ugh, this movie is so painfully shitty that you’d have spent your time better if you scraped the muscles off your legs. And why is it that every time I see Alex Pettyfer in a movie my dislike for him grows just a little more?” – Baby Fish

5. Conan the Barbarian – 2.51 Average Tier

“at some point, enough people with more than enough money thought THIS was a good idea. and that bothers me about this world…” – guy piranha

4. Red Riding Hood – 2.4 Average Tier

“A Gothic fairytale created by a team of middle managers, this is nothing more that a checklist of features needed to sell tickets to the Twilight demographic. A nameless medieval European village full of beautiful all-American teens with flawless makeup (including the boys), the worst dance party since The Matrix Reloaded, buckets of teen angst, terrible acting, woeful CGI and an ending so bad it makes the previous 80 minutes of mediocrity seem like high art. Utterly soulless.” – misterlizard

3. Season of the Witch – 2.36 Average Tier

“So… how many movies does Nicholas Cage have to make before the IRS leaves him alone and he can finally go back to making decent movies instead of this crap…” – DaeSanye

2. The Roommate – 2.21 Average Tier

“Another film for philistines, The Roommate is an asinine rendition of Single White Female-level cliches of psycho friend “horror” whose banality and dopiness constitutes an assault on film culture that’s formed out of filmmakers like Christian E. Christiansen pandering to the lowest common denominator. Cinematic portrayals of psychopathy have rarely been so inane but never has stupidity and superficiality been so broadly held up as virtuous — not even by Cameron Crowe!” – tomelce

1. Abduction – 1.95 Average Tier

‘I walk around like everybody else but inside I just feel like I’m a stranger in my own life.’ Man, am I glad this dialog was improvised and no-one actually wrote this script. Am I right guys? … Guys?” – calharding


View Filmmakers by Country

We’ve released new functionality that allows you to filter the list of filmmakers by their country.

Of course, this filtering is only as good as the data. We’ve filled out the data for thousands of actors, directors and screenwriters, but there are many more that need the information. To further that end, as part of this update, we’ve also loosened the restrictions for updating biography information.

Used to be, you had to fill out (a) Nationality, (b) Date of Birth, and (c) Biography, before Criticker would accept the change. Now, you can fill out one, two or all three of the values. So if you know where Lou Diamond Phillips is from, but not when he was born, you can still contribute.

Hope you enjoy the new feature!