This is a summation of every movie review on the site arranged by year. Most years are arranged in star order, highest first. Thumbnail review links are provided for all nine and ten star films. To find a specific movie you’re looking for it is easiest to use the find function of your browser.


2016 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Captain America: Civil War showed Batman vs Superman how it should be done with a compelling and convincing enough story to go along with it’s fun super-action.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Very nicely combining Rudyard Kipling’s and Disney’s The Jungle Book, Jon Favreau’s worthwhile remake (also called The Jungle Book) doesn’t have the swagger or charisma of the animated movie but features fantastic visual effects used to tell it’s story.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Kung Fu Panda 3 is fun and has an unusually positive motivational message for a Dreamworks movie (i.e., it doesn’t advocate having sex with other species). I enjoyed Ghostbusters more than I expected; Chris Hemsworth and Kate McKinnon embarrass themselves by forgetting to include any recognisable human behaviour.

★★★★★ 5/10

★★ 2/10

  • Only Jeff Goldblum survives Independence Day: Resurgence intact; he’s fantastic, charismatic, cool and fun. Nearly everyone else from Roland Emmerich down through the story and characters (especially hobo-psycho Bill Pullman) to some of the visual effects are humiliated by their poor quality work.

2015 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Max Max: Fury Road is a very good, expertly paced action movie and Charlize Theron is on typically charismatic top form. After a number of dissatisfying entries on to his incredibly packed resumé, Ridley Scott delivers a good, entertaining financial and commercial hit with The Martian. Matt Damon is excellent and charismatic, as always, and the climax is exhilarating. Star Wars: The Force Awakens is an entirely non-disappointing Han Solo sequel / reboot / remake of Episodes IV-VI with enough care and attention to the characters to make it better and more fun than it needed to be. The young cast are fantastic.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Ant-Man is terrific fun despite a weak villain. Inside Out is a high quality film and clearly had a lot of thought put into it but I did not find it particularly fun. Spectre features a number of strong scenes and some welcome humour but an unconvincing love story and action that is not as striking as it should be means that expectations should be reigned in. Star Wars: The Force Awakens was far better than anyone could have hoped. It manages to be a fun adventure in it’s own right as well as re-establishing a firm bedrock of excitement for the Star Wars universe.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Focus is slick and largely intriguing but the script wasn’t tweaked enough to match the casting and the ending is double-take-worthy stupid. Jurassic World really got lucky with unusually generous critics and eye-bulging box office receipts. It’s alright. Kingsman: The Secret Service should be a classic and Colin Firth is unexpectedly awesome but,  partly due to incomprehensibly-edited action sequences, this remains dissatisfying. The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is a quiet throwback to how espionage movies used to be, i.e., not endless explosions, and the cast are fun; Cavill, in particular, is too smooth for words. Jurassic World passes the time very well, it’s paced superbly and it does have a couple of moments where someone clearly rejected a cliché that was probably originally there. It’s not good, exactly, but it is better than expected. Ex Machina was arguably over-praised by contemporary critics wishing to prove their Seventies-movie-watching street-cred.

★★★★★ 5/10

  • Despite a refreshingly light tone, an enjoyable villain and a number of fun lines, Avengers: Age of Ultron is a disappointing and impactlessly-edited lump of movie. Fantastic Four hasn’t turned out too well, certainly, but it looks like it was originally going to be brave and interesting. Fast & Furious 7 is incomprehensibly edited but otherwise impressively stupid. Nice send off for Paul Walker though. Terminator: Genisys is average at best with only Arnie providing a number of pleasing moments but it’s contrived and incoherent in a brazen, almost daring manner. The Escort is an unconvincing prostitute fairy tale but Lyndsy Fonseca is sweet enough to carry things; think Pretty Woman without the charm, charisma or good looks of Richard Gere.

★★ 2/10

  • Hoping to eliminate the memory of Roland Emmerich’s noisily-criticised 1998 Godzilla movie, Godzilla (2015) manages to be much worse by having no entertainment value or redeeming qualities whatsoever. San Andreas is also aggressively stupid with largely impactless visual effects.

2014 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Edge of Tomorrow is a terrific science fiction action movie, a lot of fun and Tom Cruise is on top form. X-Men: Days of Future Past is probably the best blockbuster of summer 2014.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier got the summer blockbuster season off to an impressive, early start and is a good film but nearly a great film. The Lego Movie is not quite awesome, perhaps, but it is a lot of fun and much better than we were anticipating. Noah is an interesting, thought-provoking movie with great work from Russell Crowe. Dawn of the Planet of the Apes was excellent with seamless wonderful special effects (you cannot believe there are no real apes) but it suffers from a rote climax. Bang Bang! may not make much sense but it looks amazing and is a lot of fun.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

★★★★★ 5/10

  • Guardians of the Galaxy has genuine and reasonably convincing character development which was a nice surprise but the weak villains and rote, forgettable action bring it back down to Nova.

★★ 2/10

  • Transformers: Age of Extinction is a derisory action movie but, sadly for critics worldwide, it’s financial success meant no-one could use the extinction pun in relation to the franchise.

2013 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • The Wolverine is a massive improvement over his first solo live action movie and arguably the best Summer 2013 blockbuster. Oblivion is a spectacular-looking and –sounding movie and is intriguing and entertaining. Frozen is Disney magic.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  •  Better than expected by avoiding most of the traditions of the zombie movie, World War Z is a good thrill ride. Don’t be put off by the title, The Croods is a nice, fun adventure movie and is not crude at all.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Iron Man Three managed to keep a couple of plot surprises up it’s sleeve and is more fun the longer it goes on but is never quite as good as it very nearly is. I suspect it will be better on second viewing (update: surprisingly, it wasn’t; it is not quite the sum of it’s frequently magnificent parts) unlike Star Trek Into Darkness which, while boasting a professional sheen, is likely to be rather worse. More spectacular and preposterously imaginative than expected, Fast & Furious 6 cemented itself as a perennial summer blockbuster. Arnie returns in The Last Stand and has enough personality to carve itself a little nostalgic niche in your heart. Pacific Rim promised great-looking robot versus dinosaur action and that’s what we got. But nothing more. Roland Emmerich’s White House Down should have been more fun or more tense. Wreck-It Ralph got lauded by a lot of critics as a classic but it’s not. Jack The Giant Slayer is refreshingly free of extreme violence, overt sexuality, bad language and selfishness for a Hollywood family action film. Sabotage is mostly an intriguing, surprisingly gory thriller starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Thor: The Dark World is a bit disappointing, really, despite Chris Hemsworth and some good fun moments.

★ ★ 2/10

  • It is difficult to penetrate what on earth the financiers and creatives behind The Lone Ranger were thinking. Not this, surely.

★  1/10

  • I thought The Lone Ranger was going to be the worst blockbuster of the year but Bruce Willis insults his fanbase by blearily vomiting A Good Day to Die Hard on them.

2012 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Looper is one of those movies that you appreciate the more you look and think about it but it’s serious without being thrilling and not fun enough to justify that. While some reviewers went a bit over the top, proclaiming Skyfall to be the best Bond movie ever, it is, in fact, the best M movie ever.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Avengers Assemble is better than you could have hoped for, if not quite as dramatically interesting as it may have been, and it also contains what is certainly one of the all-time classic final showdowns. Frankenweenie is another good stop-motion animation from Tim Burton. Safe delivers the action you might hope for from a Jason Statham movie but it also delivers well-defined characters and interest. Ben Affleck continues his ascent of critical goodwill with Argo. Ang Lee scored a big commercial and critical hit with the thought-provoking and visually impressive Life of Pi. Tarsem’s light-hearted Snow White Mirror Mirror is certainly a bit wobbly at times but, overall, I liked it a lot. I also enjoyed equally different rival Snow White epic Snow White and The Huntsman with its scenery-devouring Charlize Theron capturing eyes and hearts. Snow who?

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • The Dark Knight Rises is ambitious and clever but it’s not quite the sum of it’s parts. The Expendables 2 delivers on it’s extremely violent / one liner / Eighties’ action icon promise but you wouldn’t want another one. Iron Sky takes it’s gleeful premise (Nazi’s from the moon attacking Earth with space zeppelins) and very nearly wastes it completely. While we wait for Nick Park’s next endeavour, original Aardman star Peter Lord delivered a reasonably fun and very snappy adventure with The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists! Kathryn Bigelow delivered the Oscar-nominated Osama bin Laden espionage drama Zero Dark Thirty. Talented French director François Ozon delivers another intriguing movie featuring superb performances with Dans la maison (aka In The House)Hitchcock reveals the importance of Mrs. Hitchcock to director Alfred Hitchcock’s legend. While superbly produced, animated action fantasy Rise of the Guardians doesn’t quite gel. I liked Travelers: Dimension Police while star Nao Nagasawa is becoming a bit of a favourite. Working quite well as a franchise extension, The Bourne Legacy suffers from a lack of charisma from Jeremy Renner and flat direction.

★★★★★ 5/10

  • Despite some good science fiction horror, Ridley Scott’s Prometheus is disappointing. Conspiracy thriller Safe House is predictable and very average. Wrath of the Titans is much better than the first and sometimes truly spectacular but the action is, once more, muddled.

★★★★ 4/10

  • Men in Black 3 is weak and the franchise reaffirms its place on the list where only the first movie is worth watching.

★★ 2/10

  • Unnecessary remake Total Recall proves quite remarkably dull.

2011 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Marvel Studios surprised everyone by hiring Kenneth Branagh (better known for his Shakespearean endeavours) to direct fantasy actioner Thor and he rewarded them with their best film yet. Another pleasant surprise was the successful reboot of the Planet of the Apes franchise with Rupert Wyatt’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes. Attack the Block is a terrific monster movie and it gets over it’s initially unpleasant heroes to deliver a better-than-expected character acting and story showcase.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Source Code is a movie with daft science fiction but emotionally engaging performances. Tarsem, as expected, brings some great visuals to the screen in Immortals but backs it up with good work from his hero and villain and by keeping the production largely comprehensible. Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows felt like it came out quickly for a sequel (it didn’t; it took the typical two years) but was a considerable improvement on the first movie in every respect. Steven Spielberg delivered the best ‘animated’ performance capture movie yet with The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn (specifically as opposed to ‘live action’ performance capture movie Avatar). While Limitless is entertaining enough, it feels like it doesn’t quite live up to it’s potential. X-Men: First Class is another demonstration of James McAvoy’s talent and charisma. Le Havre is an unusually positive movie full of generosity and warmth.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Transformers: Dark of the Moon improves over Revenge of the Fallen but isn’t as good as the first Transformers. Captain America: The First Avenger was pretty solid but nothing more. British intelligence services drama Page Eight was unconvincing enough to distract but still intriguing and entertaining. Cars 2 is probably Pixar’s worst movie but it’s still entertaining and looks great. Battle Los Angeles is an uneasy but superficially thrilling blend of a Hollywood alien invasion movie and a war movie. The Gray isn’t Taken with wolves, doesn’t feature Liam Neeson punching wolves into extinction and so, while efficient, it is a bit disappointing. Priest (vampire mild-superhero science-fiction action) was better than expected, tightly focused with some good monsters. Sucker Punch fails to deliver a sucker punch but looks great and provokes discussion. Justice is a thriller without thrills but a good ‘what would you do?’ premise. Science fiction action movie Lockout is fun, especially Guy Pearce, but forgettable. Science fiction thriller movie In Time is also entertaining and it had ambition and imagination too. I liked The Adjustment Bureau but, as usual for Hollywood movies, find it’s selfish conclusions about free will a little disquieting. Haywire is a good enough action B-movie with a good female action star. The Eagle is a generally competent movie undermined by virtually incomprehensible action sequences.

★★★★★ 5/10

  • Car action movie Fast Five may be Justin Lin’s best Fast & Furious sequel yet, but that’s not saying much. Crime-fighting hero movie The Green Hornet doesn’t click despite some nice ideas and visuals. Martin Scorsese disappoints once more with the clunky Hugo despite a terrific lead performance from Asa Butterfield. Robert Zemeckis’ Image Movers’ freaky animated feature output came to a blessed end with Mars Needs Moms.

★★★★ 4/10

  • Female revenge action movie Colombiana cements the awesomely named Olivier Megaton’s disappointing reputation as a director to avoid. Roland Emmerich directs two duds in a row with Anonymous (following 10,000 BC). Rio is one for the kids only: bright, colourful but barely adequate.

★★★ 3/10

★★ 2/10


2010 Movies:

Senna

★★★★★ ★★★★ 9/10

  • Senna is a classic Formula 1 documentary reaffirming the legendary status of Ayrton Senna.

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Vash the Stampede returned in a movie, action comedy Trigun: Badlands Rumble and was instantly on top form; this is satisfyingly more of the same.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Christopher Nolan’s Inception was a solid, interesting action movie but, surprisingly, a watch-once only experience. Second time is just dull. Iron Man 2 delivered a predictable but not bad sequel though if you had seen the trailer, it definitely spoiled the movie. So much so that I’ve stopped watching movie trailers now. Conversely, with a trailer moment that made me see the movie (the tank sequence), The A-Team was better, more ambitious and more imaginative than expected. While Unstoppable (runaway train thriller) was exciting, it also featured depressingly poor characterisations and Hollywood embellishments that weren’t needed. Salt (espionage sleeper thriller) didn’t quite convince but is interesting and slickly put together. Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island (psychological mystery thriller) is a movie to talk about but, like all his works, it feels like it goes on and on and doesn’t quite keep the interest. Jon Turteltaub made his best movie for Jerry Bruckheimer yet with The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (fantasy action adventure) which was more imaginative and entertaining than anticipated. Tom Cruise has fun (and so do the audience) but also kills an inordinate number of innocent fellow agents in espionage  action comedy Knight and Day. Medieval action adventure drama Robin Hood was nearly a Gladiator with mud and was more interesting than expected. Modestly-budgeted Bruce Willis conspiracy espionage-themed action movie Red featured much better action than expected and boasts one of the coolest action moments in Willis’ career. L’Illusionniste is a lovely-looking animation but an unconvincing early plot development distracts from most of the remainder of the movie. The Other Guys is a fun buddy-buddy police action comedy with an on-form Will Ferrell. Luc Besson directed the slightly disappointing fantasy adventure Les adventures extraordinaires d’Adèle Blanc-Sec but it does feature some great Egyptian mummies and a lovely leading lady in Louise Bourgoin. City Under Siege is entertaining and gleefully absurd.

★★★★★ 5/10

★★★ 3/10

★★ 2/10

  • Clash of the Titans is a bland fantasy adventure whose only purpose was to generate $500 million in worldwide box office. Not to entertain audiences.

2009 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★ 9/10

  • Best blockbuster of the year will probably be the return of James Cameron doing technically astonishing action that works emotionally in Avatar.

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Ron Howard takes Dan Brown’s page turner Angels & Demons and successfully translates it into a good thriller with an unusual backdrop. Unexpected treat of the year was wonderful Belgian animated adventure A Town Called Panic.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • J.J. Abrams resurrected Star Trek for Paramount with a fun, exciting action adventure with a couple of nice moments of gravitas from series’ legend Leonard Nimoy and a surprisingly good leading man in Chris Pine. Though it didn’t sustain a tremendous opening (backed by Michael Giacchino’s timeless score), Up is yet another good Pixar movie. Jackie Chan does something genuinely different for him in Shinjuku Incident (Jackie Chan Crime Drama). Armored (heist thriller) is refreshingly tight and tidy. Though still obtuse, science fiction horror anime King of Thorn wasn’t as impenetrable as many of it’s animated Japanese stable-mates and worked brilliantly as a relentlessly paced monster chase movie. Ice Age 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs is the best in the franchise so far. Hero-journalist movie State of Play is a fine example of the genre with typically charismatic work from Russell Crowe.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • April before I’m well enough to go to the pictures. Grief. Anyway, my first big-screen adventure of 2009 came with Monsters vs Aliens which is rescued from Madagascar / Shark Tale weakness by a lovely leading lady (though it probably isn’t important who animated her so Dreamworks don’t credit them). The Terminator franchise unexpectedly resurfaced on the big-screen with Terminator: Salvation. While it is the franchise’s weakest entry so far, thanks to a lot of spectacular action, it is rather better than one would have expected when first announced. Nicolas Cage and somebody else’s hair starred in Alex Proyas’ Knowing which was an occasionally bad film but featured a couple of impressively harrowing disaster sequences and was most definitely about something. It will give your pondering abilities a good workout, especially if you believe in the Bible or other prophetic works with a documented history of fulfilment. Bruce Willis starred in the slightly cheap-feeling but interesting Surrogates. District 9 was a little spoiled for me by high expectations thanks to gushing contemporary reviews; it’s not that good and it’s not quite entertaining or thought-provoking but it is visually remarkable and certainly highlights director Neill Blomkamp as one to watch. Duncan Jones is another director to watch after delivering a tidy science fiction movie with some good work from Sam Rockwell (if you’re a fan of his) in Moon. 9 (CG Animated Post-Apocalyptic Action Adventure) has a clearly broken story but is thrilling and entertaining nonetheless. Sherlock Holmes (Period Crime Adventure) was fine but didn’t focus on intelligence or detection and feels like a missed opportunity. Supernatural Disney fantasy The Princess and the Frog saw a welcome return for physically-produced animation but the magic just isn’t there. Computer animated science fiction action movie Astro Boy starts off rather more interestingly than anticipated but remains fun even when it devolves into ‘finding yourself’ ordinariness. Race to Witch Mountain is a reasonably thrilling but forgettable and shallow science fiction action adventure. G-Force is more fun, is ferociously paced and has superb special effects but a low-quality script keeps it at a six. Night at the Museum 2 is an entertaining adventure film, as good as you could have hoped for.

★★★★★ 5/10

★★★★ 4/10

★★★ 3/10

  • Bourne trilogy screenwriter Tony Gilroy directed Duplicity to little entertainment effect though he did supply a rather fun slo-mo fight scene between Tom Wilkinson and Paul Giamatti. Tom Tykwer disappointed with globe-trotting but remarkably dull conspiracy thriller The International.

★★ 2/10

  • Though entirely watchable, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra is the worst kind of cynical marketing ploy undisguised as a cynical marketing ploy. Somewhat less watchable is the continued demise of Robert Zemeckis with another CG freak show needlessly performing Disney’s A Christmas Carol.

2008 Movies:

2008 started with an unexpected bang as the brilliantly conceived Cloverfield (9/10) stomped into cinemas as the best monster movie since Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park.

Roland Emmerich’s long-in-the-making 10,000 BC (4/10) also stomped into cinemas a few weeks later and, while it did okay financially, a distinct lack of atmosphere makes it his worst and dullest American film.

The 2008 Summer blockbuster season opened strongly both financially and critically with Iron Man (8/10). The following week, the Wachowski’s delivered the psychedelic but broken Speed Racer (6/10). Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skulls (5/10) was anticipated with trepidation and, sadly, the badly told adventure did disappoint in entertainment terms and is, arguably, Steven Spielberg’s worst ever film. The Incredible Hulk (6/10) was not disappointing and hints at an entirely agreeable future where multiple Marvel movies and characters all cross over into each other (which sounds very cool). Kung Fu Panda (7/10) provided an unexpectedly fun blip of quality in DreamWorks Animations’ miserable recent output.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army (5/10) disappointed by burying the entertaining title character under an illogical plot and boring action.

Even though hopes weren’t high for the Rob Minkoff-directed Jackie Chan / Jet Li movie The Forbidden Kingdom (4/10), it has the feel of podgy, bland Hollywood fingers all over it and, therefore, still manages to be a disappointment.

Pixar delivered another good movie in Wall·E (7/10) but I liked the associated short Presto even more.

Then the good news came: The Dark Knight (9/10) was a bit good if not exactly fun. Intense, disturbingly thought-provoking and unexpectedly deep, it is the best, if not the most fun, movie of the year.

With October came Eagle Eye (6/10) which sees Disturbia cohorts D.J. Caruso and Shia LaBeouf follow up their Rear Window-esque thriller with an entertaining action thriller reminiscent of North by Northwest. Opening without competition is Bond 22, Quantum of Solace (7/10) which, while certainly a good interesting action movie, doesn’t really feel like a Bond movie.

2008 home viewing catch-up

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Valkyrie highlighted an area of German World War II history than I had not come across before. The Hurt Locker focused on a much more recent war and the extraordinarily dangerous work of making bombs not explode. M. Night Shyamalan’s The Happening is an efficient, effective disaster horror movie which didn’t deserve the critical pounding it received. Baz Luhrmann’s sniffed-at Australia is an entertaining, not-dark and good-looking romantic epic. Clint Eastwood delivered a precision-directed true story but Angelina Jolie was just a perfectly-set hair off in Changeling. Street Kings is a somewhat forgotten Keanu Reeve dirty cop thriller but it’s a good one.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Jeremy Clarkson released his now-customary Christmas automotive DVD (Clarkson: Thriller) and, while not as good as Top Gear, it still provides a good amount of fun. Decent movies featuring Vikings are almost unheard of so Outlander is something of an impressive achievement. The Day the Earth Stood Still remade a much-revered science fiction classic and didn’t embarrass itself. Adam Sandler fantasy Bedtime Stories and conceptually similarly fantasy adventure Inkheart did not fulfil their potential. De Niro and Pacino are both good in Righteous Kill and the film is pacy and entertaining but it could have been better.

★★★★★ 5/10

★★★★ 4/10

★★★ 3/10

  • Max Payne continues the endless run of poor movies based on video games.

2007 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★ 9/10

  • Pixar delivered another unusual but quality experience with Ratatouille.

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Bridge to Terabithia was an unexpected treat, an intelligent, beautifully-told family movie. The best movie of the summer was unquestionably The Bourne Ultimatum which was a bit brilliant climax to a better-than-expected trilogy. More unexpected entertainment came in the form of the happy Hairspray. Atonement was an impressively classy romance with an interesting backbone. Pixar delivered another unusual but quality experience with Ratatouille. Despite being directed by Gregory Hoblit, Fracture turned out to be a fun, engrossing cat-and-mouse perfect murder movie. Ben Affleck continued to improve his Hollywood standing by directing and co-adapting the thought-provoking child kidnap drama Gone Baby Gone.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Transformers was probably the most eagerly anticipated of the big summer movies and, while not a classic, Michael Bay’s stupendously good-looking film didn’t disappoint. With Stardust, Matthew Vaughn (director of crime drama Layer Cake) surprised by delivering a fun family fantasy adventure which largely supplied entertainment with an agreeably light touch. Superman: Doomsday reboots Warner Bros. Animation Superman franchise and boasts an outrageously good (and emotional) first third and is pretty good for the remainder. 3:10 to Yuma featured two great contemporary actors, Russell Crowe and Christian Bale, on great form in an interesting quality western. The Exorcism of Emily Rose is a thought-provoking and scary movie and rather better than expected. Don Cheadle provides a nice reminder that he is a capable and charismatic actor in 9/11 PTSD-themed Reign Over Me. Sunshine is generally good but the final section weakens the impact. Tightly-focused, just like Liam Neeson’s character, and crisply-directed, Taken is a simple but good thriller. Hitman is a surprisingly good video-game adaptation in the realm of modest no-nonsense action movies. Refreshingly short for an ‘important’ movie, Lions for Lambs is good without being particularly thought-provoking. Los Cronocrímenes aka Timecrimes is a crisp time-travel thriller. Inappropriately titled psychological thriller Irresistible features a standout performance from Susan Sarandon.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Die Hard 4.0 (6/10) surprised everyone by being rather good fun. A good action-y trailer wasn’t enough to find an audience for The Kingdom (6/10) though that might have had something to do with everyone thinking the movie was set in Iraq (it wasn’t, it was set in Saudi Arabia). I Am Legend (6/10) was as dour as expected but Will Smith has charisma to spare. Johnny Depp was outstanding in the brilliantly-made Sweeney Todd (6/10) but the music and gratuitous gore was not a good experience for me. Disturbia (6/10) was a not-terrible contemporary take on Alfred Hitchcock’s perfect classic Rear Window. Fantastic Four sequel Rise of the Silver Surfer (6/10) surprised everyone by exceeding our low expectations. It’s not great but it’s certainly not bad. Vacancy (6/10) is a decent scary movie but cannot disguise it’s lack of imagination. Evan Almighty (6/10) is unusually good-natured for a big-budget American movie and, therefore, rather original. Appleseed: Ex Machine (6/10) is a good-looking CG anime with a slightly muddled bad guy. Though not convincing, high-school bullying comedy Drillbit Taylor is charming, and that was enough. Surf’s Up is fun and uses a unique-to-animation documentary format.

★★★★★ 5/10

★★★★ 4/10

  • The annual Saturday Night Live-spawned movie for international audiences to scratch their heads over was Hot Rod (4/10). Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End (4/10) made pots of money but was absolutely no fun. Also from Disney, also no fun and sadly from the completely lost animation studios came Meet the Robinsons (4/10) which had plenty of heart from it’s writer / director Stephen John Anderson but, it seems, not enough talent. T4XI (or Taxi 4 for the non-illiterate) all but dumped the series trademark action but the comedy remained frantic, energetic and funnier than it should be.

★★★ 3/10

★★ 2/10

★ 1/10

  • Ghost Rider (1/10) and Shrek the Third (1/10) surprised no-one who had seen any of the trailers by being utterly atrocious. However, Bee Movie (1/10) proved a genuine surprise when, instead of being uselessly bland, it, too, was irredeemably awful. In fact, CG animation is fast becoming a byword for unwatchable. Next example, Open Season. An Open Secretion would have been more pleasant to watch. Distressingly poor animation seems to be a theme of 2007 with Fox excreting a big-screen adventure for The Simpsons in The Simpsons Movie (1/10). Tony Gilroy made his directorial debut with the directionless and boring Michael Clayton (1/10). Presumably Jude Law  and Kenneth Branagh thought the original, rather good, Sleuth didn’t have enough F-words in it, so they made a distasteful and unnecessary remake (Sleuth (1/10)).

2006 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★ 9/10

  • Christopher Nolan followed up his Batman Begins blockbuster success with brilliant period mystery (though it’s much more than that) The Prestige (9/10).

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Director Paul Greengrass delivered an impressively visceral tale of United 93 (8/10), the plane that didn’t hit a building on September 11th, 2001, thanks to the efforts of passengers using their dying actions to save others. Actor-turned-director Guillaume Canet delivered a surprisingly terrific thriller in the shape of Tell No One (8/10). Starter for Ten (8/10) is engaging romantic comedy fun. The Last King of Scotland (semi-fictional biopic) also stars James McAvoy but is certainly not. But it is a very good film. Breach (8/10) featured an outstanding performance from Chris Cooper as a US traitor.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

  • Cars (7/10) is another good movie from Pixar though, ultimately and surprisingly, it is rescued by cinema’s best motor-racing scenes for a very long time. Sharkwater (7/10) is an eye-opening documentary about our misconception of sharks and the brutal trade that, if it continues, will make them extinct and maybe ourselves too. Stranger Than Fiction (7/10) delivered a brilliantly original and stimulating premise but didn’t quite make the most of it. While largely sniffed at by critics and assorted bandwagon jumpers, I enjoyed X-Men: The Last Stand (7/10) and maintain that it contained, arguably, the best unexpected scene in any of the summer blockbusters. Renaissance (7/10) provided one of the most striking looking movies of all time, a literally black-and-white noir. Death Note (7/10) and Death Note: The Last Name (7/10) successfully adapted and squished the brilliant manga and anime into a few hours. While both had significant weaknesses, Clint Eastwood’s World War Two double-header Flags of our Fathers (7/10) and Letters from Iwo Jima (7/10) were both worthwhile entries in a crowded genre. Penélope Cruz and writer / director Pedro Almodovar headline the quality drama Volver (7/10). Michel Ocelot delivered a number of stunning moments in animated fantasy adventure Azur et Asmar.

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Ben Affleck restored some of his battered professional reputation with good work in Hollywoodland. J.J. Abrams delivered, arguably, the best summer blockbuster sequence with the opening of Mission: Impossible III but the remainder felt merely solid. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest was, in terms of action and visual effects, better than we could have hoped for but the complete lack of depth is felt. The otherwise weak Night at the Museum showcased the joy and screen charisma of the great Dick Van Dyke. Fast Food Nation wasn’t quite as digestible (hehe) as Morgan Spurlock’s 2004 Super Size Me (7/10). Robert DeNiro directed a classy but fictional take on the early development of the CIA in The Good Shepherd but there was a welcome glimpse of the charismatic greatest-actor-of-his-generation that we hadn’t seen for too long. Keanu Reeves showed off his charisma with the ladies by romancing Sandra Bullock from two years and death away in The Lake House. Better-than-expected thriller Slow Burn makes you wonder why they waited two years after production to release it. Darren Aronofsky finally got to make and release The Fountain and it was an intriguing movie that doesn’t outstay its welcome. The DaVinci Code turned out rather duller than it’s fantastically controversial plot should have allowed. Seraphim Falls is an intriguing chase western but it could have been even better. Japanese animation studio Gonzo delivered their first feature film with Origin: Spirits of the Past but it’s superb visuals and sonics were not backed up by an involving story. Ice Age 2: The Meltdown is better-than-expected in that it’s not awful and is entertaining. American Dreamz (political celebrity terrorist satire) is unconvincing. Scoop (Woody Allen comedy thriller) is a great reminder of just how good Woody Allen is at making the most of his material.

★★★★★ 5/10

  • Goro Miyazaki’s Tales from Earthsea showed that Studio Ghibli currently has no future. Korean monster movie The Host also didn’t quite work despite a number of eye-catching ingredients. John Cena didn’t turn out to be another charismatic Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in adequate bottom-shelf actioner The Marine. You could clearly see the plot problems in The Invisible. Prisoner-of-war movie Rescue Dawn was not as interesting or involving as it should have been. Jamel Debbouze has one arm. The character he plays in Indigènes (aka Days of Glory) has two. It’s a problem. While not exactly good, The Last Legion was rather better than the trailers made it look.

★★★★ 4/10

  • Dhoom 2 (4/10) proved slightly weaker than the original Dhoom. Writer / director Steven Zaillian couldn’t put All the King’s Men (4/10) back together again but it was all his own fault. No Nick Park, no quality, in Aardman’s dismal Flushed Away (4/10). Thanks to director Corey Yuen, hopes were a little higher than is usual for video-game movies so DOA: Dead or Alive (4/10), despite being nice-looking and professionally put together, still managed to be slightly disappointing.

★★★ 3/10

★★ 2/10

  • Richard Linklater added to his pile of boring, unlikeable movies about boring, unlikeable drug addicts with A Scanner Darkly. Renny Harlin’s Hollywood career started high with Die Hard 2 but it continues it’s downward plummet with The Covenant though, to be fair, it did have potential.

★ 1/10

  • If you ever wondered what would happen if Steve Martin wiped his bum on your local cinema screen, The Pink Panther will satisfy your thirst for knowledge. Eragon joins the near endless list of movies that feature dragons but are inexplicably awful. Jackie Chan produces possibly his worst movie ever with action comedy Robin B Hood. Alphabetically punctuating what must rank as one of cinema’s worst ever years is Kurt Wimmer’s Ultraviolet.

2005 Movies:

 

★★★★★ ★★★★ 9/10

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

★★★★★ 5/10

★★★ 3/10


2004 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

  • Premier British director Danny Boyle gave us an outstanding child’s performance (from Alex Etel) in the wonderfully uncynical Millions. Hayao’s MIyazaki’s adaptation of Howl’s Moving Castle (animated fantasy) captures the imagination and never lets it go.

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

  • Hellboy provided some fun and a visually impressive title character. The Jacket was unconvincing but in an interesting way.

★★★★★ 5/10

  • Dhoom had, appropriately, fun songs but the remainder of the enterprise was weak and undermined by leading man Abhishek Bachchan. Godzilla: Final War has a generous amount of good Godzilla battles but the in-between bits let it down.

★★★ 3/10

  • Mulan 2 proved another hateful Disney sequel that I’d rather take as a suppository than watch again. Despite audiences looking forward to Ocean’s Twelve as another fun caper, Steven Soderbergh didn’t bother to make, well, anything, seemingly. Steven Spielberg’s worst ever film? He directed The Terminal which should have been about two minutes long but was instead eked out over a miserable two hours.

2003 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

★★★★★ 5/10

★★ 2/10


2002 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10


2001 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

★★★★★ 5/10


2000 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★ 9/10

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

★★★★★ 5/10


1999 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★ 10/10

★★★★★ ★★★★ 9/10

★★★★★ ★★★ 8/10

★★★★★ ★★ 7/10

★★★★★ ★ 6/10

★★★★★ 5/10

★★★★ 4/10


1998 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★

★★★★★


1997 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★

★★★★★


1996 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★

★★


1995 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★★


1994 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★


1993 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★★


1992 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★


1991 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★


1990 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★★


1989 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★★ ★

★★★★★


1987 Movies:

★★★★★ ★

★★★★


1986 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★


1985 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★


1983 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★


1980 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★ ★


1979 Movies:

★★★★★


1978 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★

★★★★★


1977 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★


1976 Movies:

★★★★★ ★


1975 Movies:

★★★★★ ★


1974 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★★ ★


1971 Movies:

★★★★★ ★


1968 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★★ ★


1966 Movies:

★★★★★ ★


1965 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★


1963 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★

★★★★★ ★★


1962 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★


1961 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★


1960 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★


1958 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★★ ★


1956 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★


1955 Movies:

★★★★★ ★


1954 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★


1953 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★★


1951 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★


1949 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★★ ★


1948 Movies:

★★★★★ ★

  • Toshiro Mifune and Akira Kurosawa worked together for the first time in Drunken Angel.

1947 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★


1946 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★

★★★★★ ★


1943 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★


1942 Movies:

Bambi
Bambi

★★★★★ ★★★★

  • Bambi (Walt Disney coming-of-age)

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★ ★★


1941 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

★★★★★


1940 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★


1939 Movies:

★★★★★ ★


1932 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★★★


1927 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★


1921 Movies:

★★★★★ ★★★

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