Get Your Ass Off Mars: The Martian Is A Thrilling, Crowd-Pleasing Science Problem

1. The Martian will make you feel better about America, about the goodness of your fellow man, about the limitless possibilities of human achievement. That it’s also rooted in hard science (or at least a movie’s version of hard science, which is close enough), that all its surprises and accomplishments are borne of… »9/30/15 2:25pmWednesday 2:25pm

The Walk Is A Cloying, Uneven Caper With An Absolutely Amazing Final Act

The feat that made Philippe Petit legendary—his tightrope walk between the two towers of the World Trade Center on August 7, 1974—was both brave and insane. What made 2008’s Man on Wire, the Oscar-winning documentary about his achievement, so striking was that despite full access to Petit and his cohorts, the film… »9/29/15 4:56pmTuesday 4:56pm

The Gambling Drama Mississippi Grind Will Break Your Heart

When their eyes first meet, there’s an immediate spark, or perhaps a shared recognition. Gerry (Ben Mendelsohn) sells houses, but he’s not particularly good at it, mostly because he doesn’t care at all about his job, and only gets excited about the next time he can gamble. Curtis (Ryan Reynolds) is a little harder to… »9/25/15 3:47pm9/25/15 3:47pm

The Idiotic Stonewall Is A Bigger Disaster Than Roland Emmerich's Actual Disaster Movies

1. Stonewall misses the point of the Stonewall riots in almost the exact same way that Pearl Harbor missed the point of Pearl Harbor. That’s not a comparison I make lightly. Pearl Harbor turned one of the most seminal moments in American history into the pretext for a lame story about two white schmucks fighting over… »9/23/15 4:46pm9/23/15 4:46pm

Robert De Niro Redeems The Dopey Fantasy That Is The Intern

At a time when some romantic comedies are flexing an edgier, more smart-ass tone—They Came Together, Sleeping With Other People, even Trainwreck—perhaps it’s a refreshing palate-cleanser that Nancy Meyers movies continue to operate in their own storybook world. You know what to expect from the writer-director behind … »9/22/15 4:05pm9/22/15 4:05pm

Everest Works Best When It Focuses On The Mountain, Not The Feeble Men On It

1. If nothing else, you should see Everest on as big a screen as possible. I was fortunate enough to see it in 3-D on a digital IMAX screen—not the same as the IMAX format, mind you, there’s a difference, but still, you know, big—and I’m glad I did. The most you can hope for from a movie about Mount Everest is that it… »9/18/15 3:54pm9/18/15 3:54pm

Black Mass Plays Like A Boston-Mob-Thriller Parody

1. Whatever your thoughts on The Departed or The Town—the modern Boston mob/crime thrillers that all modern Boston mob/crime thrillers are measured against—it is undeniable that everyone involved was deeply invested in both. Matt Damon had been waiting his whole life to play a character like his Departed rat; I… »9/17/15 8:12pm9/17/15 8:12pm

The Visit Proves That M. Night Shyamalan Is Still Trying Way Too Hard

1. Man oh man, remember the Newsweek that dubbed M. Night Shyamalan “The Next Spielberg?” Has an entertainment-cover of a national newsmagazine ever aged worse? All right, maybe this one. But man, that Newsweek cover might have been the worst thing that ever happened to Shyamalan. The Sixth Sense was a surprise… »9/17/15 8:12pm9/17/15 8:12pm

Richard Gere's Homelessness Drama Time Out Of Mind Will Hit You Hard

1. New York City is obviously the central setting of thousands of movies, and, being New York City, it’s adept at serving as whatever backdrop you want it to serve. It can connote romance or menace, limitless possibility or untold decadence, Candyland or the Hellmouth. But, as someone who lived there for 13 years, I… »9/17/15 8:11pm9/17/15 8:11pm

Toronto Film Festival 2015: 10 Movies We Can’t Wait To See

The 40th Toronto Film Festival, which kicks off Thursday, represents both what’s great and what’s maddening about the fall movie season. With the summer blockbusters behind us, we can focus more on serious, ambitious dramas—though some of those might turn out to be lame awards bait or pretentious misfires. Below are… »9/09/15 10:26pm9/09/15 10:26pm

The Dystopian Love Triangle Z For Zachariah Proves That Hell Is Other People

One of the best things about Z for Zachariah, the new drama starring Margot Robbie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Chris Pine, is that even after seeing the movie twice, I still have no idea how I feel about any of its three protagonists. That’s by design. Based on Robert C. O’Brien’s 1974 sci-fi novel, the movie plays like a… »8/26/15 11:23am8/26/15 11:23am

American Ultra Is A Sweet, Ultraviolent Stoner Love Story

1. There’s an undeniable kick in watching a reedy nerd unleash cinematic violence, particularly when he’s confused by it, separate from the act, almost observing it. I’ve always thought this was the initial, primal appeal of The Matrix, how Keanu Reeves was a weirdly dispassionate participant in his own fight scenes,… »8/21/15 1:58pm8/21/15 1:58pm

Straight Outta Compton Celebrates The Day The Bad Guys Won

Director F. Gary Gray’s group-endorsed new N.W.A biopic Straight Outta Compton brings us back to a time when hip-hop didn’t yet dominate popular culture. Now that rap has long been at the forefront of pop music, it’s easy to forget that in the 1980s, the form wasn’t just new but also novel, an outsider’s music not yet… »8/13/15 1:52pm8/13/15 1:52pm

You'll Forget About The Man From U.N.C.L.E. While You're Still Watching It

1. You need a pretty good reason to resuscitate The Man From U.N.C.L.E.—a ’60s television series that went off the air before Jay Z was born—and I’m afraid Guy Ritchie’s movie version doesn’t have one. Perfectly passable, generic, and inoffensive, it vanishes from your brain almost while you’re watching it. This is… »8/11/15 6:16pm8/11/15 6:16pm

Please Let This Be The Last Fantastic Four Movie

1. You know, until everybody turns into a superhero, the new Fantastic Four reboot isn’t half bad. You can see what they were trying to do. We watch four ambitious, incredibly smart young kids come together to work on a science project that has the potential to change the world; they’re played by some of our most… »8/06/15 4:00pm8/06/15 4:00pm

Meryl Streep Rocks Out: Ricki And The Flash Could've Been Worse

Ricki and the Flash could’ve easily been yet another broad, obvious dysfunctional-family comedy. It’s right there in the setup: A middle-aged woman who years ago abandoned her buttoned-down Midwestern husband and kids to be a rock ’n’ roll star must now make amends, setting up a feel-good redemption (with a side order… »8/05/15 1:53pm8/05/15 1:53pm

The David Foster Wallace Movie Gets Our Vision Of Him Right, At Least

The End of the Tour, a drama about a five-day interview/road trip that took place between novelist David Foster Wallace and Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky in 1996, has already received significant pushback from those closest to the late author, who committed suicide in 2008. Wallace’s estate announced in April it… »7/31/15 4:19pm7/31/15 4:19pm

The New Mission: Impossible Is Almost Better Than The New Mad Max

1. I think if the Mission: Impossible franchise starred anyone other than Tom Cruise, we’d regard all these movies as classics. All five have been excellent in their own ways, but unlike any other franchise I can think of, each sequel is better than its predecessor. Each has a different director, and different… »7/30/15 2:49pm7/30/15 2:49pm

The Lifeless Vacation Reboot Is All Bowels And No Heart 

1. The original 1983 National Lampoon’s Vacation is a classic because deep down, it’s essentially a sweet movie. The screenplay was written by John Hughes—based off the short story “Vacation ’58,” which he wrote about a family trip to Disneyworld, and which ultimately got him on the staff of National Lampoon—and the… »7/28/15 5:23pm7/28/15 5:23pm