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Criticker Zealot - 5352 Film Ratings

Member Since: Oct 21, 2010

Location: Australia

Age: 38

Bio: "The complete filmgoer is open to the movie on the screen, and asks it to work in its own ways for its own purposes. He does not fault one for not being the other, but is grateful for both if they are successful." - Roger Ebert, Review of "Keane" (2004)
more Recent Ratings
62 18% Onward (2020) - Apr 18, 2021
"Noble Pixar effort has a good cast, with Holland and Pratt sparring well off each other, but story elements are frustratingly run-of-the-mill and too obviously cribbed from better efforts (I think the well has run dry on dead parent stories now hint hint!) Film can never quite get over the decidedly strange manifestation of the dead parent, especially when nothing is done with it as an idea, except for a few weak riffs on WEEKEND AT BURNIES. Ultimately harmless and good-natured, but forgettable."
98 94% Grizzly Man (2005) - Apr 18, 2021
"Utterly captivating, unique portrait of Treadwell and his obsessions is an ideal fit for Herzog's fascination with eccentric, single-minded people on foolhardy quests. Vigorous and stimulating because of the delicate balancing act Herzog manages by never overtly sympathising with Treadwell or sentimentalising the animals - the bears are an unblinking reflection of the cold disregard of nature; Treadwell's ultimate grisly end is neither tragic nor heroic – it just is (as Herzog all but states)."
71 33% Royal Family (1969) - Apr 17, 2021
"Long unavailable portrait of the inner-workings of the British Royal Family circa 1960s is interesting from a historical perspective, as a puff-piece to humanise the family to a TV audience. The censorious efforts of the Royals to bury this seem to be in service of nothing; it's an entirely positive, at times hagiographic portrait of the family which goes down fairly easily, though it has since been eclipsed by much better TV specials on the subject. Highlight: an amusing visit from Nixon!"
72 35% Airheads (1994) - Apr 16, 2021
"Silly, disposable comedy is fun for its eclectic casting, though its riffs on DOG DAY AFTERNOON just made me wish I was actually watching the better movie! Don’t look for much credibility or sustenance here, with the casts good spirits helping to prop up an ultimately sagging and repetitive narrative; perhaps surprisingly it is Sandler who steals the film, with a lovely and sweet portrait of naïve guilelessness, contrasting with the more brashly cynical Buscemi and Fraser."
70 31% Love and Monsters (2020) - Apr 16, 2021
"Starts out brightly and cleverly enough that you can almost forgive its too obvious cribbing from ZOMBIELAND; O'Brien is a likable hero in the Eisenberg tradition. Loses its way once Rooker shows up, whose character doesn't make a great deal of sense and then abruptly leaves, making the mid-section feel a bit "shaggy dog"-ish, and a little tiresomely generic and "action-packed' during the climax, sacrificing the intriguing world building for more familiar action beats. Good creature effects."
57 13% My Best Friend's Girl (2008) - Apr 15, 2021
"Yes, there's going to be a needle drop somewhere... Starts out well, especially if you are a (guilty) fan of Cook's swaggering, alpha-posturing smarminess. Winds up wavering between its heart and its head – its head wants to be a sweet natured romance (I could buy Cook and Hudson at this if the movie was sincere), but its heart is a leery and grotesque comedy; had it fully committed, it could have been much better. Some funny lines and performances help the viewer to hang in there."
40 5% Minari (2020) - Apr 15, 2021
"Heartfelt evocation of childhood memories has the ring of truth in its small details to make this feel genuine, lived in and authentic – the overheard parents fighting, the strange, alien seeming behaviour of the dotty grandma, Patton’s inexplicable (and unexplained) religious devotion. The problem is a dramatic inertness, especially in the lack of fire (ahem) in the family dynamics; there is just not enough sustaining dramatic grist here, despite poignant and sincere performances."
76 45% Final Destination (2000) - Apr 12, 2021
"Standard issue silly teen slasher done with style and finesse; not quite a broad send-up or deconstruction like SCREAM, but clearly inspired by and modelled on it. Doesn’t hurt that its premise is an irresistible one and that the screenplay does a pretty noble effort of using, exploiting and even developing the premise in interesting ways. Always helps in best of these to have a likable cast as is the case here; this ultimately breaks no new ground, but it is a very entertaining genre entry."
88 74% Emma. (2020) - Apr 11, 2021
"Beautifully vibrant, energetically performed and terrifically cast right down the line – Taylor-Joy is indeed a joy in the lead, reveling in Emma’s bitchiness but finding the reserves for genuine tenderness and emotion where needed; film may well be stolen by O’Connor as a hilariously smarmy Mr Elton (he only need to remain out of focus during a dance scene to get a good belly laugh!). Some beautiful sun dappled photography gives the out-of-doors settings a visceral immediacy."
71 33% Chain Reaction (1996) - Apr 11, 2021
"I feel like Weisz’s physicist character should have spent more time saying "How the hell did THAT just happen..." Dopey actioner finds Davis working through a checklist of greatest hits from THE FUGITIVE; while this plays on many of the same chase and action beats, Reeves is (as always) a fuzzy and wooden hero, and the roster of potential antagonists is so long and varied that the film struggles to gain a head of steam. Still has its charms (especially if you don’t take it too seriously)."