BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP 03/28/2014

Russell Crowe as NoahNOAH

“As entertaining and exciting as he makes it, Aronofsky makes sure you leave the theater  thinking about what you just saw in ways that go far beyond the ‘wow’ factor most epic movies like this shoot  for, and that’s what makes it great.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

“You’ve got to respect the stones it takes to look at The Bible and say: “Yeah, it’s good – but we can do better!” – Bob Chipman, Escapist

“It’s entertaining in several respects; confounding, confusing and frustrating in many others.  It’s most assuredly not the Old Testament Noah story.” – Tim Estiloz, Boston Examiner

“There’s no command of tone here, no overarching mood the way, say, drab melancholy dominates THE WRESTLER or hallucinatory fever rules over BLACK SWAN.” – Jake Mulligan, In Review Online

 

SABOTAGE9cd28dcb-92d7-4dc1-a3bb-fe5b215e2b39_sabotage_blog_gs

SABOTAGEis a really flat revenge tale that doesn’t come close to giving what they are advertising.” - Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

 

chavez28f-1-webCESAR CHAVEZ

“His film ultimately feels much more finely-honed than competing entries in biopic canon, which is to say that it meanders, but with slightly more purpose.” – Andy Crump, A Constant Visual Feast

“The film itself isn’t anything spectacular, but CESAR CHAVEZ gives its audience an opportunity to learn about this man and the trials and tribulations that the people on the fields had to deal with back in those days.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“Watching his life-size cardboard cutout of Chávez shout, “Yes, we can,” I was moved, but only to wish that one of the things “we” can do is to make a resonant, dramatically rich film about a leader who forcefully but nonviolently bent the arc of the moral universe toward justice — which this inoffensive cow pie most certainly isn’t.” – Inkoo Kang, The Village Voice

 

Le Weekend<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
Directed by Roger Michell<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
Starring Lindsay Duncan and Jim BroadbentLE WEEK-END

“Occasionally buoyant and more often wrenching, this film is admirably dedicated to portraying every facet of a dedicated relationship, beautiful or ugly, for better or worse—usually, ugly and worse.” – Andy Crump. In Review Online

“Kureishi’s endlessly quotable script provides a robust foundation for “LE WEEK-END, a mordant, mournful and acerbic relationship drama that represents a superb achievement for Duncan, Broadbent, and director Roger Michell (NOTTING HILL).” - Inkoo Kang, The Wrap

“LE WEEK-END is a chronicle of late-life misery, a “What do we do now that the kids are gone?” kind of story. It’s been done before, recently and better (GLORIA; ENOUGH SAID).” – David Riedel, San Antonio Current

 

pg-arts-ernest-credit-StudioCanalERNEST & CELESTINE

Storybook sketches and muted colors emphasize motion and light rather than the excessive visual detail of more “commercial” animated approaches.”  - Norm Schrager, Film Racket

 

BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP 03/21/2014

DIVERGENTDIVERGENT

“Our setting: A post-apocalyptic, mostly-ruined future Earth where the only documents to survive The Fall were apparently an Archie Double-Digest and a DVD of SHE’S ALL THAT.” – Bob Chipman, Escapist

As for the cast…well, let’s just say that the post-apocalyptic future will be filled with healthy, beautiful young people with toned bodies, fantastic hair and, for the most part, blank expressions. Just like those other popular  book/movie franchises.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

“All of the tension that could be mined out of her conundrum—no one can know that she was born different from nearly everybody else—gets shunted aside for boring filler and terrible world-building.” – Andy Crump, In Review Online

“My negative view of DIVERGENT is primarily based on the generic repetition that’s on display from beginning to end.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“The film works because it engages in some creative world-building… That said, its roots in other YA successes are painfully obvious. ” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

 

Muppets_Most_Wanted_14MUPPETS MOST WANTED

“…the film ends up being just as much of an ode to the Muppets’ brand of unbridled delight without having to wax sentimental; in the end, Bobin and Stoller cleverly get to have their cake and eat it, too. And so do we.” – Andy Crump, Paste Magazine

“The plot to steal England’s crown jewels makes no sense, but it’s a delightful kind of no sense, and if the point is gleeful silliness, who cares?” – David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

“I did start to wonder whether making fun of how far The Muppets have been left behind by popular culture is going to keep being enough to make it not true.” – Bob Chipman, Escapist

 

BW1312.CR2BAD WORDS

“Clearly, and admirably, BAD WORDS strives to keep the hugging and learning to a minimum.” – Inkoo Kang, The Wrap

“Bateman almost has enough dry-tongued charm to pull off this deeply dislikable character — almost.” – Killian Melloy, EDGE Boston

“This bloodthirsty bunch fears broken dreams and innocence lost, and Trilby’s just taken the apple from paradise.” – Brett Michel, The Improper Bostonian

 

nymphomaniacNYMPH()MANIAC

“NYMPH()MANIAC is a multi-pronged film; a cineaste could read it as a celebration of sexual positivism, or as a male-driven condemnation of female sexuality.” – Andy Crump, Movie Mezzanine

“Well, at least we now know why Shia LaBeouf wears a bag over his head when appearing in public.” – John Black, Boston Event Guide

“Make no mistake, Von Trier does not make movies about topics he likes or understands. If he’s filming something, odds are he has the utmost contempt for it, which is why most of his films center around female characters.” – Kristofer Jenson, DIG

“In the spirit of getting to the point: NYMPH()MANIAC: VOLUME ONE is a piece of shit.” – David Riedel, Raw Denim

“Despite the throngs calling von Trier a provocateur, it’s von Trier’s work doing the real provoking.” - Norm Schrager, Meet in the Lobby

 

THE LUNCHBOX

Trailer321“What is delivered in THE LUNCHBOX is something beautiful that anyone can appreciate.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

 

 

THE FACE OF LOVELOL d04 _32.NEF

“What’s problematic here is that THE FACE OF LOVE treats these close calls as though they’re disposable, rather than essential beats for sustaining the film’s central conflict.” – Andy Crump, Movie Mezzanine

The Face of Love also wants to be a romance, a story about grieving (but not really), and a comedy, and all in 90 minutes. Mostly it’s just a mess.” – David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP 03/14/2014

NEED FOR SPEED  aaron_paul_kid_cudi_need_for_speed_h_2013

“NEED FOR SPEED’s” aimed-for pop-affect is the denim and axel-grease working-class musk of early Bruce Stingsteen… the retro-upon-retro haze of sentiment by-proxy that weeps with nostalgia for the moments of the 80s that wept with nostalgia for moments of the 50s.” – Bob Chipman, Escapist

“For most viewers, they’re watching something like this for the action packed car chases that are there to be had. If that’s the case, then you’ve come to the right place as that’s exactly what you’re going to get, and you most likely won’t be disappointed with the majority of it.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“There’s no getting around it. This is a dumb movie. However, if all you want out of it is cars going fast, it will fulfill your personal “Need For Speed.”” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“If you take this movie too seriously, your head will explode. Make a choice. Live in its world or live in yours. You can’t live in both and enjoy it.” – David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

 

BETTER LIVING THROUGH CHEMISTRYOlivia-Wilde-and-Sam-Rockwell-in-BETTER-LIVING-THROUGH-CHEMISTRY-618x400

“Give Rockwell’s Doug credit for having the right instinct about his future married mistress: “I hate rich people.”" – Inkoo Kang, The Village Voice

“There are probably worse ways to spend 90 minutes than watching this cast act like idiots.” – David Riedel, San Antonio Current

thumb_Visitors-2014-1VISITORS

“Many shots are of an abandoned amusement park; is the film critiquing our tendency to frippery? Or lamenting the coming day when the fun and games will be over?” – Kilian Melloy, EDGE Boston

 

CHILDS POSECHILD’S POSE

“A viewer who has seen MOTHER going into CHILD’S POSE will likely struggle to watch the Romanian film without thinking a few times of the Korean one.” – Jake Mulligan, InReview Online

BOFCA REVIEW ROUND-UP 03/07/2014

EW-300-rise-of-an-empire-banner300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE

“[Eva Green] doesn’t simply dominate the film, she cuffs it to the bedpost and works it over until it can’t remember where it left the car and probably doesn’t care.” – Bob Chipman, Escapist

“I actually enjoyed most of the action in 300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE, but there are some clear and obvious complaints that no one on this planet can excuse.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“…it seems more like a video game than a real battle. One almost expects numbers in the corner keeping track of Greek and Persian casualties so we can keep score.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

“This movie is so over the top, so stylistically acute, so surging with testosterone, and so visually brisk that there’s never a dull moment. There are plenty of laughs — not all of them intentional — but it’s all in bloody good fun.” – Kilian Melloy, EDGE Boston

“The film plays like leftovers, a sketchbook of deleted ideas. It doesn’t even have a narrative arc; it just fills out a narrative that already exists, consisting of scattered scenes that occur prior to, during and after the events of Snyder’s original.” – Jake Mulligan, In Review Online

“300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE has no ideology, purpose or ambition beyond being blood-and-guts spectacle on a massive scale. If that’s your idea of a great flick, please enjoy. If not, avoid it.” – David Riedel, Santa Fe Reporter

 

724674-mr-peabody-sherman-movie-6MR. PEABODY & SHERMAN

“While MR. PEABODY & SHERMAN may not be as popular and beloved as some of the cartoons from the past, it does make a nice debut as a feature film with this installment.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“Solidly assembled if fundamentally soulless, MR. PEABODY & SHERMAN is a gift to parents: a shiny, never-dull chunk of edutainment for Baby Einstein grads that’ll keep the kids amused with pratfalls and butt jokes while reassuring their moms and dads that not even a Nobel Prize-winning, Olympic medal-collecting time-machine inventor can get something as hard as parenting right.” – Inkoo Kang, The Wrap

a family film in the true sense. It is something that will appeal to all ages, even if your kids are laughing at different jokes than you are.” – Daniel M. Kimmel, North Shore Movies

 

GrandBuda_2798049bTHE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL

“[Anderson's] films feel like they might be set in the same universe as the Muppet Movies… if the Muppets themselves had all been raptured away decades prior; leaving only their human co-stars to meander, glum and without purpose, through the ruins of whimsy.” – Bob Chipman, Escapist

“…in making THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL, he’s waved a red flag in front of a bull, except the flag is one of 2014’s most technically accomplished films and the bull is the vocal critical minority which has decried his cinema as nostalgic hackery over the years.” – Andy Crump, In Review Online

“”Being what it is, I was surprised how much I liked “THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL.” – Jaskee Hickman, The Movie Picture Show

“Wes Anderson accentuates the comedy, like “concupiscent curds” atop a heady brew of murder, mutilation, and even deeper mayhem.” – Joyce Kulhawik, Joyce’s Choices

“When a film contains such ornate riches (it’s masterfully photographed in three separate screen aspect ratios—on film!—by Anderson regular Robert D. Yeoman, scored like your childhood music box by composer Alexandre Desplat and, yes, even allowed a little animation), you simply want more.” – Brett Michel, The Improper Bostonian

“Because the lead character arrives so well defined, so put together, Budapest is allowed to be Anderson’s plottiest picture. Gustave wins and loses riches, solves mysteries, and vanquishes bad guys, yet he remains the same man from frame one through the end credits.” – Jake Mulligan, Esquire

“I fucking hate Wes Anderson’s movies. It feels really good to get that off my chest. But The Grand Budapest Hotel ain’t half bad.” – David Riedel, San Antonio Current

 

the-bag-man-3THE BAG MAN

“Movies this bad don’t happen every day, and it goes without saying that when they do, they’re best avoided.” – Andy Crump, Movie Mezzanine