This is Chris's Movie Reviews Page
**½ Les Misérables (2012) This film version of Les Misérables is full of fantastic, balls-to-the-wall performances. Unfortunately the movie surrounding them is kind of a disjointed, herky-jerky mess.
*** The Hobbit (2012) I know this film has been getting a lot of backlash, and I guess I can kind of see why. But I really enjoyed it. And anyway, I'm not here to conjecture about other opinions. I'm here to give my own. I thought it was a lot of fun, nicely silly, and really beautiful to watch.
**** Skyfall (2012) There was a point early on in Skyfall when I realized that I was watching something special. And steadily throughout the rest of the film a certain feeling steadily grew. Skyfall is an astonishing movie. Not just astonishing for a James Bond movie, but astonishing, period. It is the epitome of a four-star movie and by leaps and bounds my favorite film of 2012.
***½ Wreck-It Ralph (2012) Wreck-It Ralph is kind of a minor masterpiece. It is bright, wickedly funny, smart, and has a good heart. Even though it isn't a Pixar movie, it joins a long line of movies that anthropomorphize inhuman things and endow them with a life they really do not have: Toys, A Bug's Life, Monsters Inc., Cars, Wall-E. It also joins that line with being incredibly drenched in nostalgia.
***½ Looper (2012) Looper is a time-travel story, and those have a tendency to go a bit pear-shaped. Time travel is a tricky thing (just look at my two articles about it here and here), and it is so easy to get bogged down by rules and get caught up in too many paradoxes, or alternately to get extremely sloppy to the point that everything is rather arbitrary (*cough* Doctor Who *cough*). Looper takes a novel approach to time travel, one I hadn't quite seen before, and as near as I can tell is internally consistent enough. And on top of that it's a good movie.
*** Brave (2012) Brave is a nice, pleasant little film. It is certainly enjoyable. It just seems like it could have been... more.
*** The Dark Knight Rises (2012) This is a movie that feels right while you’re watching it, but doesn’t hold up well to any sort of scrutiny, and has way more problems than Nolan’s previous two movies in this trilogy. Spoilers abound! Also, for no reason other than it amuses me, I'm only ever going to refer to Batman as B'man for the remainder of this review.
***½ The Avengers (2012) The Avengers is
a delicate balancing act. You have (arguably) nine separate main characters,
including the villain. They’re all fully-realized and each needs
not only a chance to shine, but a chance to develop and really to be
known. Gee, if only the movie were written by someone who had
experience writing something with nine fully-realized main characters...
***½ The Cabin in the Woods (2012) How do I review
this movie without spoilers? I really have to, because knowing anything
at all about this movie before going in would be detrimental to your
enjoyment of it. I can tell you this: The Cabin in the Woods
is a horror movie. Well, kind of. [Full
*** Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011) SH:AGOT
(or Shagot as I will henceforth call it) is a very fun, bright,
lively, and enjoyable flick. It lacks, however, a certain magic cohesiveness
that the 2009 Sherlock Holmes
had. The 2009 movie had a freshness and newness that made it exciting
and delightful, which is almost impossible for a sequel like this to
recapture. What it does recapture is the spirit of fun and excitement
and the excellent cast chemistry. [Full
***½ The Muppets (2011) The Muppets is an
incredible nostalgia trip. It is fascinating in that it isn’t
aimed at gaining a new audience for the decades-old Muppet characters;
it is aimed squarely at people who grew up watching them but are now
adults. Like me. As such, I thoroughly enjoyed it. [Full