Dour Die Hard: Olympus Has Fallen, Reviewed.

If you're going to make a movie where the White House is destroyed and the fate of the American government hangs in the balance, it at least ought to be fun to watch. That may sound sacrilegious—I'm pretty sure even the Tea Party doesn't want Washington overrun by Korean terrorists—but after sitting through the… » 3/20/13 6:03pm 3/20/13 6:03pm

A Big-Hearted Mess. Admission, Reviewed.

Admission is such a mess, its good ideas knotted up with its unfocused and bad ones, that even if you end up liking the damn thing, you may find yourself apologizing for its faults. Tina Fey's first movie to be released since 30 Rock ended reminds us that she can do more than Liz Lemon, and it's great to see her take… » 3/19/13 6:49pm 3/19/13 6:49pm

The Kind Of Trash You Love: Spring Breakers, Reviewed.

1. Spring Breakers is trashy: I'm not telling you something you don't know here. It's self-consciously trashy, but not in any sort of wry, ironic, removed way. It dives headfirst into its trash, wallowing in it, wringing it for every last drop of slime. This is a nothing movie about nothing people doing nothing… » 3/12/13 5:30pm 3/12/13 5:30pm

Off To See A Snoozer. Oz, The Great and Powerful, Reviewed.

1. The notion of doing a prequel to The Wizard of Oz focused on Oz himself isn't an inherently terrible idea. The wizard, after all, is the one character in that story who's neither completely good nor bad; he's full of shit, sure, but he also means well for Oz and ultimately tries to grant everybody's wishes anyway.… » 3/08/13 5:50pm 3/08/13 5:50pm

Colin Farrell, Dead Man Down, And Why It's Pointless For Bloggers To…

It's common for film sites to do some kind of "career advice" column where they analyze a Hollywood star's trajectory and try to figure out what kinds of roles the actor should or shouldn't be doing. Will and I used to do this for The Projector, so I understand the impulse: You see a career that maybe isn't going as… » 3/07/13 5:50pm 3/07/13 5:50pm

Once Upon A Time, They Made Fantasy Movies Like This. Jack The Giant…

1. It's sort of amazing how low the bar has fallen for big tentpole action/fantasy films. With the rise of 3-D (and, more to the point, 3-D surcharges), spectacle is the minimum entrance requirement, and even that has been watered down to the point of monotony. You can pick your poison, but I've always thought the… » 2/27/13 5:53pm 2/27/13 5:53pm

Seth MacFarlane Wasn't The Worst Oscar Host Ever: In Defense Of A Boob

For Seth MacFarlane's critics, Sunday night was supposed to be the moment we finally got to see the guy get his comeuppance. A "billion" viewers around the world, one of the most prestigious gigs in all of entertainment: As Oscar host, this was his chance to justify his swiftly, perhaps inexplicably, rising star. Or,… » 2/25/13 10:45am 2/25/13 10:45am

The Rock Saves The Day. Snitch, Reviewed.

Snitch isn't great, but if you're like me and have enjoyed Dwayne Johnson more than his movies, his latest helps justify our faith in the guy. This is a B-movie thriller built around a real incident that's meant to show us the lunacy of our government's drug policy—and yet the movie's not preachy or sanctimonious.… » 2/21/13 5:45pm 2/21/13 5:45pm

Grierson & Leitch's Bold Predictions For The Oscar Technical Categories…

Come Sunday night, you may embark on that annual ritual: Filling out the bottom of your Oscar pool entry, pretending you know the difference between Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing. Will and I will both offer our picks for the eight major categories tomorrow, but today I'm going to offer my predictions on the… » 2/19/13 6:20pm 2/19/13 6:20pm

A Good Day To Die Hard Is The Worst Die Hard of Them All

As far as action movie franchises go, the Die Hard films hold up pretty damned well. The first one is obviously a classic: Grierson summed up its enduring charms quite well over at IFC. But the way the movies worked never seemed a proper fit for a franchise. The greatness of Die Hard lies in large part in its… » 2/14/13 5:44pm 2/14/13 5:44pm

Valentine's Day Special: The Movie Couples That Don't Belong Together

We've never quite understood the appeal of going to movies for Valentine's Day. Movie-watching is, after all, a solitary activity in which a person sits in the dark staring straight ahead in silence for two hours. But people do it anyway. Perhaps that's because romance is the central activity of roughly 67 percent of… » 2/13/13 7:17pm 2/13/13 7:17pm

Brand New Star, Same Old Crap. Identity Thief, Reviewed.

Everybody is happy for Melissa McCarthy. After years on TV shows (Gilmore Girls, Mike & Molly) and small parts in movies (she's great in John August's The Nines), she broke through with Bridesmaids, getting an Oscar nomination in the process. She's a really funny lady who's ridiculously effervescent, and it's high… » 2/07/13 6:45pm 2/07/13 6:45pm

The Steven Soderbergh Experience: Brilliant, Modest, Fiercely…

"I was watching one of those iconoclast shows on the Sundance Channel. Jamie Oliver said Paul Smith had told him something he hadn't understood until very recently: 'I'd rather be No.  2 forever than No.  1 for a while.' Just make stuff and don't agonize over it. Stop worrying about being No. 1. I see a lot of people… » 2/06/13 6:32pm 2/06/13 6:32pm

Charles Swan Will Make You Hate Charlie Sheen All Over Again

It always struck me as so strange that Oliver Stone, when he was making his name with Platoon and Wall Street, saw Charlie Sheen as his ideal everyman, the audience representative, the proxy, the innocent surrounded by the rot and corruption Stone sees around every corner. Even then, before the drugs and the porn… » 2/05/13 6:30pm 2/05/13 6:30pm

Warm Bodies Is the Zombie Romance You Didn't Know You Wanted

Of all the boogie monsters and creepy creatures in our public consciousness, the zombie is the most metaphorical by virtue of being the most inflexible. All the other monsters are too human: Vampires and werewolves and Frankenstein's monsters—they're all too motivated by reason, by desire, by upward inflections of… » 1/31/13 6:45pm 1/31/13 6:45pm

Sundance Film Festival: Five Movies Everyone Will Be Talking About

Spending a week at the Sundance Film Festival, you can see a little bit of everything: horror movies, activist documentaries, experimental low-budget indies, even mainstream comedies starring the leads from Parks & Recreation. It's impossible to catch everything—scheduling issues kept me from buzzy titles like The… » 1/30/13 6:00pm 1/30/13 6:00pm

Rating Every Sketch In Kentucky Fried Movie, The Film Movie 43 Wanted…

Tomorrow, the film Movie 43 opens, and if its stars have their way, you'll never know a thing about it. As amusingly detailed in the New York Post this week, the myriad of movie stars involved in Movie 43 — including Richard Gere, Naomi Watts, Halle Berry, Emma Stone, Hugh Jackman and Kate Winslet — want nothing to do… » 1/24/13 6:10pm 1/24/13 6:10pm