movie film review | chris tookey

Harry Knowles


Ain’t It Cool News, USA


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Bicentennial Man (1999)
A damn good film of its own right.
 What a letdown.
  (Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times)
 It's frequently witless and entirely lacks conviction.
  (Peter Howell, Toronto Star)
 Feels like 200 years of dullness.
  (Jackie Loohauis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
 When the house lights came up at the end, the audience I was in just sat there, slack-jawed with silent horror, like the man in Edvard Munch’s The Scream. I am virtually having to write this on an IV drip... The time has come to tell the truth: Robin Williams is the Antichrist of sentimental screen comedy.
  (Peter Bradshaw, Guardian)
 Time and time again, Williams insists on playing the idiot savant or caring clown, and if I see that expression of sensitive wonderment on his face one more time, I’ll thcweam and thcweam until I’m thick.
  (Anne Billson, Sunday Telegraph)
 Perhaps, one day, there will be robot film reviewers. And if they beg not to be sent to Robin Williams movies, we’ll know they are developing human feelings.
  (Edward Porter, Sunday Times)
 Nicholas Kazan's screenplay lacks just about everything - wit, conflict, laughs and, most of all, human interest. Instead of being a thoughtful piece about what it means to be human, it is just another bland, soulless, sanitised product from the Hollywood conveyor belt.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Shaft (2000)
This film rocked from start to finish.
 If all you require of an evening's entertainment is a constant flow of four- and 12-letter swear words, Shaft is your man.
  (Shawn Levy, The Oregonian )
 The story becomes a mess about halfway through.
  (Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News)
 It's a bad sign when audience enthusiasm peaks during the credits sequence.
  (Maitland McDonagh, TV Guide)
 To have to sit through even a few minutes of this surprisingly lame thriller just to hear the song is much too steep a price to pay.
  (Jeff Vice, Deseret News)
 The film-makers' lack of respect for the law is awesome, their irresponsible eagerness to exploit the prejudices of its audience revolting. Director John Singleton, who made the promising Boyz N The Hood, and writer Richard Price (who penned Sea of Love) should be ashamed of themselves. Samuel L. Jackson looks far too old and brainy to be in this trash.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Aeon Flux (2005)
A very accomplished film.
 Silly, ostentatious and terribly boring.
 (Michael Rechtshaffen, Hollywood Reporter)
 Every rumor you’ve heard about this film is true; it’s an absolute wreck.
 (Pete Vonder Haar, Film Threat)
 By far the year's worst movie.
 (Lou Lumenick, New York aPost)
 Any way you look at it, this little puppy is a stinker of Catwoman proportions.
 (Johnny Vaughan, Sun)
 What Catwoman did for Halle Berry, and Batman and Robin did for George Clooney, this movie does for Ms Theron.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Doom (2005)
Doom is a blast. It’s a big fun film. This isn’t just an adaptation of Doom, it’s an adaptation of the culture of Doom. I was delighted that this movie was this fun.
 A dark, violent, nerve-wracking, trigger-giddy waste of time.
 (David Hiltbrand, Philadelphia Inquirer)
 A dreadful, hackneyed piece of cinema… There's almost nothing here for an average movie-goer, even one who likes dumb action and bloodsoaked horror. Doom is a waste of time and money.
 (James Berardinelli, Reelviews)
 This claustrophobic mess of a movie offers only carnage.
 (Ned Martel, New York Times)
 Just plain dumb.
 (Annette Cardwell,
 Charmless and brainless.
 (Peter Bradshaw, Guardian)
Black Snake Moan (2007)
The first great film of 2007.
 Be prepared to collapse into a hoot and a howl of hilarity at all the wrong moments.
 (Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly)
 Jaw-dropping awful.
 (Kirk Honeycutt, Hollywood Reporter)
 (Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune)
 Offensive on multiple levels - if only the plot had any levels at all - Black Snake Moan leaves no Tobacco Road cliche unsmoked.
 (Peter Travers, Rolling Stone)
 (Stella Papamichael, BBCi)
 Christian fundamentalism gets pervy… What’s it about? Mr Brewer seems undecided whether his film is a heartfelt argument in favour of redemptive Christian values, or a sleazy opportunity to ogle a sexy white girl in bondage. The only thing that can be stated with absolute confidence is that it’s about 116 minutes, and that’s 116 minutes too long.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Semi-Pro (2008)
This is one of the best Will Ferrell feature comedies.
 This could possibly be the worst film I have ever seen.
 (Matt Mungle, Phantom Tollbooth)
 It is chillingly devoid of laughs, and looks like some deconstructionist experiment, deliberately draining the comedy genre of jokes to reveal the parched, pointless story skeleton beneath... Mr Ferrell is seriously off his game.
 (Peter Bradshaw, Guardian)
 Will Ferrell’s movie success is a mystery to many of us - with his dead little eyes and air of Saturday Night Live self-regard, he’s hard to like, let alone laugh at.
 (Peter Whittle, Sunday Times)
 A turkey of gargantuan proportions. If you don’t believe me, watch the trailer. There isn’t a laugh in that either.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Watchmen (2009)
This is a completely different experience. For the first time in my 22-23 year relationship with the characters and universe of WATCHMEN, there is something entirely new to dissect, talk about, argue about, get enraged over, get drunk over, fight over and to fucking love!... I WATCHED THE FUCKING WATCHMEN AND FUCKING LOVED IT! It isn’t the perfect 5 hour wet dream that I always dreamt of, but I love it. I can’t wait to see the dialogue you all have with this film, with each other and with us here at AICN. This was fucking awesome!
 Incoherent, overblown, and grimy with misogyny, Watchmen marks the final demolition of the comic strip, and it leaves you wondering: where did the comedy go?
 (Anthony Lane, New Yorker)
 Perhaps there is some pleasure to be found in regressing into this belligerent, adolescent state of mind. But maybe it’s better to grow up.
 (A.O.Scott, New York Times)
 Ponderous, self-important, unpleasantly violent and, quite frankly, kind of silly.
 (Frank Swietek, One Guy’s Opinion)
 This movie is a shallow interpretation of Watchmen, shorn of sophistication or literary density. Worst of all, watching the film makes you wonder whether the source material was actually any good to begin with.
 (Orlando Parfit, IGN Movies UK)
 “What has happened to us? What has happened to the American dream?” a character asks. The answer might be: “You, Zack Snyder. Man-boy directors, blessed with skill but no soul, content to peddle enervatingly reverential treatments of soft porn for kidults.”
 (Sukhdev Sandhu, Daily Telegraph)
 This despicable trash will find an audience among sad sociopaths, deranged pseudo-intellectuals and brutalised, immature men of all ages. I just hope that there aren’t enough of them to make it a hit. If there are, God help cinema.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009)
A wild ride. Awesome. So much fun.
 Long and, at times, unpleasantly violent.
 (Matthew Bond, Mail on Sunday)
 It’s impossible to care for the Joes, so cursory is the characterisation, so bland are the actors. It is all so very uninvolving.
 (Tim Nogle, Sunday Times)
 About as uncomfortable to sit through as running in a marathon with a bad case of the trots.
 (Adam Tobias, Watertown Daily Times)
 Another moronic blockbuster… overlong, boringly vacuous and pointlessly noisy.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Tron: Legacy (2010)
I live for films like Tron... It fucking kicked ass!... I’m a TRON geek for life!
 Perhaps this is an old-fashioned notion, but if you're going to see a movie that admittedly features lots of digital bells and whistles as its major draw, shouldn't you still be able to tell what's going on?
 (Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic)
 Alas, it's a legacy of Tron that its sequel has to be as slow and dense, as humorless and emotionally sterile as its original.
 (Roger Moore, Orlando Sentinel)
 Plastic, phony, and utterly soulless.
 (Drew McWeeny, HitFix)
 A showcase of the most astonishing computer- graphics' work Hollywood can muster... all wrapped round one of the most lunk-headed scripts that was ever parped out of an ink-jet... About as much fun as a two-hour sock-ironing session.
 (Robbie Collin, News of the World)
 An unbelievably soulless product, a sapping series of disappointments packaged as a top-of-the-range, 3D Christmas gift.
 (Mike McCahill, Sunday Telegraph)
 State-of-the-art drivel.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
A Serbian Film (2010)
A brilliant movie... Imagine a film written by Paul Schrader at the height of his seventies super powers directed with the handsome presentation of a David Fincher. Now imagine that their subject matter is the very scary world of avant garde illegal former Soviet block Porn production... There is some very realistic simulation of things that in various states, could be deemed illegal – thus, the film will require a few snips. This sucks, but this is the way it is… until there are more theater owners with backbone and integrity to show the best of cinema, no matter its subject matter… until there are distributors that wish to return us to challenging and difficult subject matters told brilliantly… well, until they pick up a film like this. A film that frankly is very very accomplished. A distributor that understands the value of getting it shut down in a few intolerant communities – in order to sell the film in the liberal godless markets in this widely diverse country of ours. This is a film to wake the ire of the right, and bring down the awesome of those that support the arts... We should all be so lucky to see it
 Pseudo-intellectual claptrap at its very worst.
 (Martyn Conterio, Little White Lies)
 I’m dead serious in my assertion that you must avoid this pointless, disgusting, nihilistic, morally bankrupt film. At all costs... From what dark, evil recesses of the soul did this movie emerge?
 (Chris Pandolfi, Gone With The Twins)
 A nasty piece of exploitation trash.
 (Mark Kermode, Radio 5 Live)
 Its parade of rape, necrophilia and paedophilia involving newborns feels like a blatant attempt to create lucrative tabloid controversy.
 (Jamie Russell, Radio Times)
 An astonishingly explicit film that wallows in the extreme sexual tortures that it affects to condemn.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Transformers 3: Dark Side of the Moon (2011)
Easily the best 3D since AVATAR – and in many respects I think it is superior.… After I saw the film, my brain felt tired. Not from great thoughts, but from the experience of the film. It wore my brain out watching it. I found myself thinking about the set-ups Bay made to physically make this movie. The sheer volume of wow shots is spectacular.… The action in this film is truly amazing work. Bay’s talent for designing these shots is nothing short of amazing to watch. The physical look of everything is amazing... I really kinda loved Shia’s Sam in this film.
 A work of ineffable soullessness and persistent moral idiocy.
 (Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune)
 The picture isn’t just poorly written, with streams of cliché that one can only hope are intended as send-ups of wretched dialogue, but also badly shot and edited.
 (Frank Swietek, One Guy’s Opinion)
 A visually ugly film with an incoherent plot, wooden characters and inane dialog. It provided me with one of the more unpleasant experiences I've had at the movies.
 (Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times)
 One small step for action movies, one giant leap into the abyss of mindlessness.
 (Joe Williams, St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
 In which director Michael Bay perpetrates another junkyard fiasco that turns the volume up to 11 and the IQ to -1.
 (Anthony Quinn, Independent)
 The ethos is perfectly captured in a scene where Ms Huntington-Whiteley poses next to a classic car, and the camera explores her body while another character waxes lyrical about the curves of the chassis. It’s a hi-tech Benny Hill Show, minus the laughs.
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
Spun (2003)
A masterpiece of drug cinema!
Poolhall Junkies (2003)
For anyone who knows what cool is…this film’s for you!
Charlotte Sometimes (2003)
A resounding success!
The Sea (2003)
The most explosive, hard-hitting family confrontation since The Celebration and a pretty funny one at that.
On_Line (2003)
Sexy. My favorite film of Sundance.
Garage Days (2003)
A mind-bendingly cool comedy. This is some kind of weird masterpiece!
Dummy (2003)
Amazing... one of the best films I've seen this year.
Melvin Goes to Dinner (2003)
One of the best films you'll get to see this year.
Palindromes (2005)
Todd Solondz's best film by far! Shocking, emotionally centered - it's moving.
The Lovely Bones (2009)
This is an incredibly lovely film. From the visuals to the performances to the story-telling and film work… it all goes to capture a very powerful story in a way that makes you want to hug those close to you.
Iron Man 2 (2010)
The thing that is just fucking outstanding about the film is that every single character has motivations and I understand where they're coming from... I FUCKING LOVE THE ACTION of the film. I love that this is full on Marvel Science Fiction. The entire last act just fucking rocks balls!
We Are What We Are (2010)
Really great work, in particular keep your eye on Jorge Michel Grau - he's going places.
The Expendables (2010)
A testicular masterpiece of mannish awesomery!!!... This is just a great fucking time. This is whooping and hollaring and being excited.
Four Lions (2010)
This is really really great.
Warrior (2011)
The best film of the year.
Undercover Brother (2003)
The Princess Blade (2003)
A beautiful action movie.
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