movie film review | chris tookey
 
 

Alan Frank

 
 

Daily Star/ Video Home Entertainment, UK

 
 
   
 

Quote Whore Quotient : 72

 Quote Whore Status : 11th
 
 
   
Batman and Robin (1997)
Fast, furious and exciting. You'd be bats to miss it.
 
 The Second World War didn't seem to last as long as Batman and Robin, or make as much noise.
 
  (Alexander Walker, Evening Standard)
 
 There's nowhere to hide in this mess.
 
  (Anthony Quinn, Mail on Sunday)
 
 Nothing I can say is quite as eloquent as the comment from an eight year-old boy overheard halfway through one of the American test screenings: 'Mom, I don't think I want to watch this any more.'
 
  (Tom Shone, Sunday Times)
 
 The laughable Chris O'Donnell [is] even limper than he was in In Love And War... Blockbuster writing has never been lamer than here; throwaway humour never more worthy of being thrown away. Joel Schumacher, a peerless mediocrity among directors... scarcely produces a single memorable shot in the movie... I would urge you not to go... Movies like this are destroying what was once a great art form.
 
  (Quentin Curtis, Daily Telegraph)
 
 It’s perfect viewing for your young son, if you happen to wish him to develop into a gay biker with a keen interest in martial arts and leather fetishism.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
 
Prince Valiant (1997)
There are betrayals and battles galore, lashings of not too bloody swordplay which makes it just the ticket for action-loving youngsters and nifty cliffhangers in a merry medieval romp that simply sets out to entertain and succeeds.
 
 If the overall impression is of immense energy and effort going into a project whose point nobody is quite sure of, that may be an indication of the film's diverse, 'Europudding' funding.
 
  (Quentin Curtis, Daily Telegraph)
 
 Curiously old-fashioned, but never in a good way.
 
  (Bob McCabe, Empire)
 
 Deeply sub-Arthurian… feebly scripted, confusingly directed, tackily produced and abysmally acted.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Bring Me The Head of Mavis Davis (1998)
Mayall is sharp and funny as a washed-up record producer who decides that the only way out of his escalating financial woes is to dispose of horrendous fading singer Horrocks so that, like Elvis and Jimi Hendrix, her recordings will become even more profitable after death. It's Mayall's best film work so far and while the blend thrills, black comedy and plain silliness could have used more honing, it's still easy-going fun.
 
 Truly terrible... This mess was part-financed by the BBC. What on earth were they thinking of?
 
  (David Gritten, Daily Telegraph)
 
 So awful I can barely bring myself to review it. Rik Mayall's presence now signals the kiss of death on any movie... Avoid it like the plague.
 
  (Anne Billson, Sunday Telegraph)
 
 It is not the first time that Mayall, so brilliant on television, has come a cropper in the cinema, and some of us still wince at the recollection of Drop Dead Fred.
 
  (George Perry, Sunday Times)
 
 Bring me the head of the person who commissioned this horrible drivel.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Little Nicky (2000)
10 out of 10!
 
 Superlative in its dreadfulness.
 
  (Eric Harrison, Houston Chronicle)
 
 A mind-boggling mess.
 
  (Joe Baltake, Sacramento Bee)
 
 A motley collection of mistimed gags.
 
  (Dave Kehr, Citysearch)
 
 So aggressively juvenile - make that infantile - that I feel I should be scrawling this review in crayon.
 
  (Steven Rosen, Denver Post)
 
 A movie for people who find pop-up books too intellectually demanding and college keg parties too socially refined. It's that dumb. Maybe even dumber.
 
  (Steve Tilley, Edmonton Sun)
 
 Inane, contemptible drivel... Rarely have 84 minutes felt more like eternal damnation.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
 
Charlie (2004)
Bold, bloody and bone-breaking... the best British crime thriller in years.
 
 It doesn’t help that Charlie’s screenplay is a tedious compendium of clichés, informing us that Richardson loved his “muvva” and hurt only his own kind. But what sinks the film is the cast’s all-round lack of burning screen presence.
 
  (Edward Porter, Sunday Times)
 
 There’s a troubling lack of moral censure here, with an epilogue that seems to condone Richardson’s hideous reign of terror as a bit of fun.
 
  (Jason Solomons, Mail on Sunday)
 
 If only we could be sure that this was supposed to be satirical.
 
  (Peter Bradshaw, Guardian)
 
 Grotesque and gratuitous. This is a tatty, sporadically offensive muddle of rubbish jump cuts, abysmal dialogue and one-time Walford residents making fools of themselves.
 
  (Catherine Shoard, Sunday Telegraph)
 
 A new low in British gangster movies - no mean feat, after You're Dead and Rancid Aluminium. Charlie is a brainless glorification of Sixties gang boss Charlie Richardson…Charlie was a strong believer in loyalty and family values, straight up. That must explain why Needs continues to place his trust in Adam Ross, the not noticeably talented actor brother of critics Paul and Jonathan. Adam confirms his lack of promise in Shoreditch with an equally flat performance in a minor role. News of the World reviewer Paul has responded by acclaiming this movie as "slick and stylish… it'd be a crime to miss it." No, really - bruvverly love like that brings a tear to me old mince pies… I can recall only a handful of films in which the violence was so transparently gratuitous, or as gloatingly shot. If I were a lovable Cockney criminal like our Chazza, I'd say that everyone responsible at the distributors, Entertainment, should have their feet nailed to the floor.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Night at the Museum (2006)
Inventive, thrilling and fabulously funny... Don’t mss it.
 
 Loud, overlong and thoroughly exhausting.
 
 (Ken Fox, TV Guide)
 
 Night at the Museum takes a can't-miss comedy premise and misses by a country mile.
 
 (Jack Mathews, New York Daily News)
 
 Strands several generations of performers in a highly derivative script and hackneyed direction.
 
 (Lou Lumenick, New York Post)
 
 With a cast featuring Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Robin Williams, and Ricky Gervais, one has a right to expect something amusing from Night at the Museum. Oddly, not only is the movie unfunny, but it rarely tries for laughs.
 
 (James Berardinelli, Reelviews)
 
 This movie is made by and for people who don't care about good storytelling.
 
 (Lawrence Toppman, Charlotte Observer)
 
I Want Candy (2007)
Hilarious, laugh-out-loud comedy.
 
 Drivel. Even those who go to see it hoping for a bit of nudity will be disappointed. In the end it doesn't matter how big the producer's ideas are because the film just won't stand up.
 
 (Jennie Kermode, Eye for Film)
 
 Dire... It isn’t sexy and isn’t funny.
 
 (Peter Bradshaw, Guardian)
 
 For sheer ineptitude, the outstanding film of the week is this feebly written, flaccidly directed, pitifully acted attempt at a British sex comedy.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Spider-Man 3 (2007)
Truly outstanding. 10/10.
 
 An overwrought bore.
 
  (Nathan Lee, Village Voice)
 
 Overlong, visually incoherent, mean-spirited and often just plain awful.
 
 (Ann Hornaday, Washington Post)
 
 How not to make a sequel.
 
 (Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle)
 
 A shambles.
 
 (Anthony Lane, New Yorker)
 
What Happens in Vegas... (2008)
Very entertaining. 9/10.
 
 The overwhelming sensation of deja vu is exhausting and disorienting. You really HAVE seen it all before.
 
 (Connie Ogle, Miami Herald)
 
 After the initial charm wears off, the whole thing gets check-your-text-messages dull.
 
 (M. E. Russell, Portland Oregonian)
 
 What Happens in Vegas is not only annoying, it's also incompetent – a bad mix.
 
 (Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor)
 
 The cynicism about human beings (us included) reeks as much as the filmmaking.
 
 (Manohla Dargis, New York Times)
 
 Worst-in-breed not only for this year, but very likely in living memory.
 
 (Richard Schickel, Time)
 
Space Chimps (2008)
Cracking. 10/10.
 
 A digitally animated feature that gives every indication of having been written and drawn by its titular characters.
 
 (Kyle Smith, New York Post)
 
 The animation, incidentally, is half-assed, like they ran out of the $292.96 budget halfway through. Rip-off, indeed.
 
 (Robert Wilonsky, Village Voice)
 
 So uninspired. It consistently goes for the cheap laughs, mining way too many jokes out of puns, pratfalls, and the occasional reference to poop (these are apes, after all). The adventure is aimless and the feel-good message is mired in homogenized hokum.
 
 (Bill Gibron, FilmCritic.com)
 
 They say that if you give a thousand chimpanzees a thousand typewriters, eventually they’d turn out Hamlet. I’m not so sure. It’s far more likely they’d turn out Space Chimps.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
 
 
The Boat That Rocked (2009)
Curtis’ funniest film ever. 10 out of 10.
 
 Hopelessly crass, it's also stupefyingly lazy… A new low: The Film That Sucked.
 
 (Anthony Quinn, Independent)
 
 All the worst of the Curtis formula is here, stretched extremely thin over a whopping 134 minutes. The ensemble is large, the characters aggressively one-dimensional, the dialogue lazy and the sexual politics grotesque.
 
 (Jenny McCartney, Sunday Telegraph)
 
 Dismal... a listless, sketchy mess.
 
 (James Christopher, Times)
 
 Has as much connection with the period as The Flintstones has with the Stone Age... Infantilised.
 
 (Philip French, Observer)
 
 Duff actually.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Lesbian Vampire Killers (2009)
Very very funny. 10 out of 10.
 
 There’s as much not to like as you might find in a 20 year-old can of rancid minestrone at the back of your mum’s larder.
 
 (Tim Robey, Daily Telegraph)
 
 Badly directed, poorly acted, witlessly scripted, it’s a black hole that not even a Simon Pegg could fill. Probably the worst horror movie, comic or otherwise, since an ailing Bela Lugosi crossed the Atlantic 57 years ago to appear in Old Mother Riley Meets the Vampire.
 
 (Philip French, Observer)
 
 Profoundly awful.
 
 (James Christopher, Times)
 
 It’s pretty woeful and unimaginably boring.
 
 (Anthony Quinn, Independent)
 
 This is the most puerile, half-witted British comedy since Sex Lives of the Potato Men - lewd, loutish laddism at its worst.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Angels & Demons (2009)
Slick, quick and immensely entertaining, 9/10.
 
 It's not so-bad-it's-good bad. It's not even amusingly bad. It's worse-than-The Da Vinci Code bad. It's they're-taking-the-piss bad. It's don't-give-them-your-money bad.
 
 (Mike McCahill, Sunday Telegraph)
 
 About as exciting as looking over someone’s shoulder while they finish a crossword.
 
 (Trevor Johnston, Time Out)
 
 Brown really is one of the dumbest authors ever. In terms of style, characterization and plotting, he makes the routinely and rightly reviled Jeffrey Archer look like Dickens. This is a terrible movie with barely concealed contempt for its audience. Please don’t go to see it, or another of these calamities may be along next summer.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Planet 51 (2009)
Terrific entertainment for the whole family.
 
 The jokes are far too weak for adults or children, at least on this planet.
 
 (Kyle Smith, New York Post)
 
 Bland, unfunny, charmless and boring, an animated turkey being released just in time for Thanksgiving that even undiscriminating kids will be able to pinpoint as a forgettable waste.
 
 (Dustin Putnam, The Movie Boy)
 
 A movie so flat and derivative that it seems to have been desperately cobbled together from other, better pictures.
 
 (Frank Swietek, One Guy’s Opinion)
 
 A poorly conceived comedy spotlighting a collection of anal-centric humor that’s about as appealing as baseball bat to the face.
 
 (Brian Orrndorf, Filmjerk.com)
 
 A grimly inauspicious first feature from Ilion, a Spanish company that has endowed the film with no fewer than 14 producers but no decent script.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Perrier's Bounty (2009)
The fastest, funniest crime thriller you could hope to see. 10/10.
 
 Enough already with the Guy Ritchie knock-offs.
 
 (Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter)
 
 Perrier's Bounty is all stock material, full of characters that deserve more than the cliched shootouts and showdowns that befall them. Even the movie's most natural impulses seem to come from a can.
 
 (Wesley Morris, Boston Globe)
 
 A hectic, ultraviolent romp that is inordinately pleased with its own sardonic nihilism.
 
 (Stephen Holden, New York Times)
 
 A routine yarn, easily forgotten.
 
 (Edward Porter, Sunday Times)
 
 It's about as exciting as a two-part, coconut-flavoured snack chased down with a mouthful of mineral water.
 
 (Robbie Collin, News of the World)
 
 The picture keeps lumbering to a halt, in an attempt to make us care about the film’s central relationships, but the writing never delivers characters who are anything more than unsympathetic caricatures.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
London Boulevard (2010)
Gripping... It would be a crime to miss it. 9/10.
 
 This film's distributors insisted I watch this with a public audience. For the record, out of nine people who started watching this with me, only six lasted the course. You've been warned.
 
 (Graham Young, Birmingham Post)
 
 London Boulevard is like a fancy, retro-styled pocket watch that someone accidentally broke and tried to reassemble with only a vague idea of clockwork.
 
 (Leslie Felperin, Variety)
 
 This disastrous gangster film wastes an excellent British cast.
 
 (Philip French, Observer)
 
 I'm blaming the staggeringly cack script, which leaves more loose ends untied than a short-sighted vasectomy doctor.
 
 (Robbie Collin, News of the World)
 
 Dreary, mind-bogglingly inept. Not one of these characters is remotely plausible as a carbon-based life-form. It’s all dreadful, pointless rubbish and, I would have said, unreleasable.
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
Hereafter (2010)
Magnificent movie by a master filmmaker.
 
 I sincerely cannot help but worry, with no snarkiness intended whatsoever, whether Clint Eastwood has gone senile… There’s no story, there’s no philosophy, there’s just an endless void.
 
 (MaryAnn Johanson, The Flick Filosopher)
 
 When an 80-year-old director turns his attention to death, you hope for some insight, or gravitas, or even whimsy or anger. Hereafter has none of that.
 
 (Kyle Smith, New York Post)
 
 Hereafter occupies some muzzy twilight zone, too woo-woo sentimental to be real, too limp to make for even a halfway decent ghost story.
 
 (David Edelstein, New York Magazine)
 
 How did this inert piece of silliness see the light of day?
 
 (Peter Bradshaw, Guardian)
 
 A fate only slightly preferable to death. The whole thing’s presumably intended to be profound and spiritual. I’m afraid the reality is that it’s depressing, pretentious dopiness on an epic scale, as though 80 year-old Clint has suddenly become possessed by the befuddled spirit of M. Night Shyamalan.
 
 
 (Chris Tookey, Daily Mail)
 
 
The Heartbreak Kid (2006)
A comic treat. 10/10.
The Accidental Husband (2008)
A truly funny date movie.
Transporter 3 (2008)
Magnificent. 9/10.
The Yes Man (2008)
Immensely entertaining. 9/10.
The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus (2009)
A wild and wonderful fantasy - thoroughly entertaining.
The Lovely Bones (2009)
An unmissable film, sure to be one of 2010’s finest. 10/10.
Hachi: A Dog's Tale (2009)
The perfect family film. *****
The Next Three Days (2010)
Terrific!
Arthur Christmas (2011)
10/10. Fun funny film for all the family.
The Good Thief (2002)
Racy, pacy crime thriller whose ingenious touches of Ocean’s Eleven and Rififi add impact to the lively entertainment… Jordan retells the familiar story about a perfect heist that goes awry with bags of style, lashings of action, sterling suspense and a satisfyingly sly ending.
Big Fish (2003)
Wonderful treat. 10/10.
Around the World in 80 Days (2004)
Very funny... a super spectacle. 9/10.
 
 Back to top 
Key to Symbols