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NEW THIS WEEK
Bridgend 5
Nina Forever 4
Deadpool 2
Zoolander 2 1
War, A rate me!
Southbound rate me!
Touched with Fire rate me!
Glassland rate me!
Of Mind and Music rate me!
Fitoor rate me!
Final Project, The rate me!
ALSO IN THEATERS

COMING NEXT WEEK
17-Feb Embrace of the Serpent
18-Feb How to Be Single
19-Feb Busco Novio Para Mi Mujer
19-Feb Neerja
19-Feb Providence
19-Feb Race
19-Feb Risen
19-Feb Rolling Papers
19-Feb Shut In (2016)
19-Feb Triple Nine
19-Feb Viral
19-Feb Witch, The

DVD RELEASES
9-Feb 99 Homes  
9-Feb Freaks of Nature  
9-Feb Grandma  
9-Feb Spectre (2015)  
9-Feb Truth  
16-Feb 33, The  
16-Feb Bridge of Spies  
16-Feb Labyrinth of Lies  
16-Feb Steve Jobs  
16-Feb Trumbo (2015)  

TOP 5
MOVIES IN RELEASE
TITLE RATING
Bridgend 5
Good Dinosaur, The 4.38
Ip Man 3 4
Detective Chinatown 4
45 Years 4

BOTTOM 5
MOVIES IN RELEASE
TITLE RATING
Choice, The 1
Zoolander 2 1
Fifty Shades of Black 1
From Vegas to Macau III 1
Dirty Grandpa 1

2012 Tribeca Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Keep the Lights On 3
Side by Side 3.86
Whole Lotta Sole 4
Revenge for Jolly! 1
Marvel's The Avengers 4.31
MORE MOVIES

2013 Fantasia International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Secretly Greatly 3.8
Four Soldiers (Les 4 Soldats), The 4
Bad Film 4
Battery, The 3
Burning Buddha Man, The 3
MORE MOVIES

2013 Toronto International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Fifth Estate, The 2
Field in England, A 5
Blue Is the Warmest Color 4.75
Jodorowsky's Dune 4
Sacrament, The 3
MORE MOVIES

2013 New York Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Like Father, Like Son (2014) 5
Immigrant, The 4.23
Omar 4.57
12 Years a Slave 3.52
Touch of Sin, A 5
MORE MOVIES

2013 Chicago International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Lasting 3
Stranger by the Lake 4
Like Father, Like Son (2014) 5
12 Years a Slave 3.52
Kill Your Darlings (2013) 2.22
MORE MOVIES

2015 South by Southwest Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Ex Machina 3.94
Love & Mercy 5
Unfriended 4.25
Excess Flesh 3
Entertainment 3
MORE MOVIES

2015 New York Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Walk, The 3.71
Arabian Nights: Volume 1, the Restless One 4
Arabian Nights: Volume 2, the Desolate One 5
Don't Blink - Robert Frank 5
Where to Invade Next 3.57
MORE MOVIES

2015 Toronto International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Arabian Nights: Volume 2, the Desolate One 5
Martian, The 4.5
Our Brand Is Crisis (2015) 2
45 Years 4
Anomalisa 4
MORE MOVIES

2015 Fantastic Fest MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Office (2015/South Korea) 4
Victoria 4
Witch, The 4.5
Keeping Room, The 3.86
Anomalisa 4
MORE MOVIES

2015 Chicago International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Entertainment 3
Spotlight 4.83
Where to Invade Next 3.57
They Look Like People 5
Carol 4
MORE MOVIES

2015 AFI Film Fest MOVIES
TITLE RATING
H. 3
Carol 4
By the Sea 4
Big Short, The 4.19
Concussion (2015) 1.87
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2015 Vancouver Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Crumbs 4
45 Years 4
Cop Car 3
Marshland 4
Royal Tailor, The 4
MORE MOVIES

2015 Denver Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Carol 4
Theory of Obscurity: A Film About the Residents 3
World of Kanako, The 4
Crumbs 4
H. 3
MORE MOVIES

2015 Philadelphia Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Legend (2015) 3
Brooklyn 4.78
Our Brand Is Crisis (2015) 2
Bridgend 5
Naz & Maalik 4
MORE MOVIES

2015 Savannah Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Brooklyn 4.78
45 Years 4
Anomalisa 4
Call Me Lucky 5
Amy 5
MORE MOVIES

2015 Austin Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Brooklyn 4.78
Carol 4
Love the Coopers 1
Mojave (2015) 4
33, The 3
MORE MOVIES

2015 Hawaii International Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Carol 4
Brooklyn 4.78
Spotlight 4.83
Anomalisa 4
Legend (2015) 3
MORE MOVIES

2015 London Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Forbidden Room, The 5
Brooklyn 4.78
Assassin, The 5
Bone Tomahawk 4
Room (2015) 3.33
MORE MOVIES

2016 Sundance Film Festival MOVIES
TITLE RATING
Sophie and the Rising Sun 4
MORE MOVIES

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Movies Listed: 29262
Total Ratings: 243588
Total Reviews: 27117
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SPOTLIGHTED FEATURES REGULAR COLUMNS
Films I Neglected To Review: "Now What Are You, And Who Are You Doin' Here?"
Interview: Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson on "Anomalisa"
Criticwatch - The 2015 Quote Whores of the Year
Criticwatch Presents: Peter Travers (The 2015 Retrospective)
Criticwatch Presents: Pete Hammond (The 2015 Retrospective)
Celebrity Exclusive Interviews
Film Festivals of the World
Criticwatch
Rants and Raves
Court of Public Opinion
DVD Reviews
Movies & Money with Erik Childress
The HBS/EFC Hall of Fame
The Oscar Eye
Films I Neglected To Review with Peter Sobczynski
Short Stuff
WGN Radio's Movie Reviews Podcast (w/ Nick Digilio, Erik Childress & Collin Souter)
DVD/Blu-ray Schedules
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LATEST REVIEWS
ZOOLANDER 2
"Ready-To-Weary"
1 stars
Peter Sobczynski says... "Although it was not a particularly huge success in theaters when it opened in 2001 (perhaps due in small part to opening only a couple of weeks after 9/11), Ben Stiller’s spoofy comedy “Zoolander” went on to become a big hit on home video and eventually developed a large and fervent fan following that supposedly includes the legendary Terrence Malick amongst its ranks. To be honest, I have never actually met any of these people or have ever seen any tangible proof of their love of that excessively and not-especially-amusingly dumb film but I am at least willing to consider the possibility that they do exist. (If Mr. Malick would like to sit down and talk about his alleged love of the film, I would be more than willing to arrange it.) That said, it is difficult to believe that even those people will be especially amused by “Zoolander 2,” a who-asked-for-it? sequel that takes the original’s one-joke premise—Derek Zoolander (Stiller),the world’s dumbest male model, inexplicably stumbles off the catwalk and into the world of international espionage—and repeats it in ways that are bigger, louder and dumber but not noticeably funnier. The end result is a film that does roughly for comedy what that pair of fuchsia jeans I owned in high school did for fashion—absolutely nothing." (more)
DEADPOOL
"The Snark Knight"
2 stars
Peter Sobczynski says... "Whatever else one might care to say about “Deadpool,” the long-speculated “X-Men” spinoff film revolving around one of the less heroic superheroes of note, the high level of snark and savagery on display, not to mention its self-aware attitude and relentless shattering of the fourth wall, all but ensure that few people will confuse it with most other superhero films of late. As someone whose general disenchantment with the genre as a whole stems in large part from their essential sameness, this decidedly different approach is certainly a change of pace and it does energize the proceedings for a while. The problem is that even though the film mercilessly criticizes the usual tropes of the genre, it eventually succumbs to them as well after a while, what started out as an absurdist tweaking of superheroes films ends up as just another movie that climaxes with the sight of oddly becostumed dopes pounding the crap out of each other. It is a shame because “Deadpool” has a good idea and plenty of energy but it just never quite manages to pull itself together into the kind of wildly subversive work that it clearly yearns to be." (more)
HOW TO BE SINGLE
"No Ring But You’ll Want To Give It A Finger"
1 stars
Peter Sobczynski says... "For the second year in a row, Valentine’s Day weekend features the release of a film aimed primarily at the female audience that stars Dakota Johnson and is based on a best-selling book. In the case of last year’s entry, a little thing called “Fifty Shades of Grey,” was a terrible film by all critical standards but it evidently fulfilled some basic function among fans of the book who wanted to see the story that they loved so much enacted on the big screen (judging from the box office results) and it did offer viewers a few laughs along the way—most of them inadvertent, to be sure, but to be fair, it did have one scene (the contract scene in which Johnson’s character negotiates exactly what she will and will not do) that was genuinely and deliberately funny. This year’s entry, “How to Be Single,” on the other hand, fails to achieve either of those admittedly modest goals by coming across as an altogether embarrassing mess that ignores both the original source material and anything resembling recognizable human behavior and fails to supply a single laugh that I can readily recall, intentional or no." (more)
FROM VEGAS TO MACAU III
"A sucker bet."
1 stars
Jay Seaver says... "When I saw the first "From Vegas to Macau" at a festival a couple years ago, I figured that I was just a victim of bad expectations, not prepared for something so silly, especially thinking of Chow Yun-fat as an icon of cool. This time, I knew what I was getting into, so maybe it would go over better. No such luck; as much as the zaniness occasionally appeals, it's sloppy and too self-satisfied to work for long stretches." (more)
MONKEY KING 2, THE
"Not an auspicious start to the Year of the Monkey."
2 stars
Jay Seaver says... "Believe it or not, this is not the first Chinese fantasy sequel I've seen where not having seen the predecessor was no big deal because it starts with "500 years have passed..." This is a good thing, because the first movie in an expected Monkey King trilogy never made it to the U.S. (a recurrent event as day-and-date releases become more common). Given that the general word is that this one fixed some of what was wrong with the first, I'm not necessarily eager to catch up; it's a sleek but dull take on the mythology." (more)
CHOICE, THE
"You bother me. Now leave."
1 stars
Jaycie says... ""Now pay attention," intones an unenthusiastic bro-country accent at the opening of this movie, "'cause I'm about to tell you the secret to life. You ready? The whole damn thing is about choices." Wow. Insightful. Or at least it might be if it weren't the message of every Nicholas Sparks story ever, and possibly every story ever in general. What do you have for us next, disembodied cowpie? "Everything happens for a reason"?" (more)
PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES
"Darcy Goes Down"
1 stars
Peter Sobczynski says... "In a just an ideal world, the title “Pride & Prejudice and Zombies” would have turned up as a punchline in a MAD Magazine article about how publishers of classic literature might try to spice up their musty wares in order to attract an entirely new audience and it probably would have scored a decent laugh—the mere idea of juxtaposing Jane Austen’s exquisite romantic comedy of manners with flesh-eating ghouls sounds amusing, at least in theory. Alas, because we live in a terrible world—and one with suspect copyright laws to boot—some idiot not only came up with the jokey title but, in defiance of all rational thought, actually decided to write the damn book, albeit by including enough of Austen’s original text to earn her arguably the least impressive co-writing credit since the 1929 version of “The Taming of the Shrew” allegedly went out with credits that said that it was written by Shakespeare with “additional dialogue by Sam Taylor.” To make matters worse, the thing became a best-seller—though I wonder as to how many people actually made it all the way through and how many gave up after a couple of chapters once the joke wore off—and inspired an entire cottage industry of sequels, spinoffs, rip-offs and the like." (more)
CHOICE, THE
"Pretty Much A Cinematic Kobayashi Maru"
1 stars
Peter Sobczynski says... "As the result of a rather oddball quirk of scheduling, the screening of “The Choice,” the latest big-screen adaptation of a best seller by the tragically prolific Nicholas Sparks, occurred right after the press viewing of “Pride & Prejudice and Zombies,” the film version of the inexplicably popular book that took the Jane Austen classic and, thanks to it being out of copyright, added hordes of flesh-eating ghouls into the mix. Both films are, perhaps unsurprisingly, bottomlessly terrible but those in danger of mixing the two of them up will be relieved to know that there are two major points of distinction between them. For one thing, in the case of “The Choice,” it comes from an author who is bad enough to actually have a movie this lousy connected to their name. For another, while “PPZ,” as the kids are calling it, is lousy with undead creatures stumbling across the screen looking for brains to snack on, any similar hordes attempting the same thing in “The Choice” would wind up dying of starvation long before the end credits." (more)
MORE REVIEWS

LATEST FEATURES
FILMS I NEGLECTED TO REVIEW: MICHAEL MOORE'S EUROPEAN VACATION
by Peter Sobczynski
"Please enjoy short review of the Oscar-nominated Danish drama "A War" and Michael Moore's latest rabble-rousing documentary, "Where to Invade Next"" (more)
SHORT STUFF: THE 2015 OSCAR-NOMINATED ANIMATED SHORTS
by Jay Seaver
"Of the three short film awards presented at the annual Oscars ceremony, the animation category is where most people are likely to feel some sort of routing interest because there's generally one entry that played before a feature, and this got seen, and thus made the viewer feel some sense of ownership. That one tends to win a lot, and often has a good argument, because it's got not just visibility, but the budget and technical resources of a major studio behind it, compared to the independent or student productions it's competing with." (more)
FILMS I NEGLECTED TO REVIEW: "NOW WHAT ARE YOU, AND WHO ARE YOU DOIN' HERE?"
by Peter Sobczynski
"Please enjoy short reviews of "The Pack" and "Southbound" and a look at three new Blu-Ray releases, including a Best Picture nominee and two classics—one acknowledged and one of sorts." (more)
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