Five star - Film Reviews

Latest Guardian Film Reviews sorted by Star Rating. Cut the crap!
  1. Invasion of the Body Snatchers review – high-octane pulp thrills
    Halloween sees the obligatory re-release of many classic horrors, but none are more deserving than this nightmarish red-scare allegory, writes Peter Bradshaw
    5 stars
  2. Mr Turner review – Timothy Spall and Mike Leigh command the screen
    This confident portrait of the great artists hits its stride straight away, with pin-sharp direction and performances, writes Peter Bradshaw
    5 stars
  3. Zabriskie Point review – Antonioni’s counterculture headtrip of a film
    Now on re-release, Michelangelo Antonioni’s freaky, fascinating film is far superior to Blowup, writes Peter Bradshaw
    5 stars
  4. Nightcrawler review – Gyllenhaal hits career high
    A creepy, gaunt Jake Gyllenhaal plays a sociopath with a scanner and a video camera in Dan Gilroy’s gripping LA drama, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  5. The Overnighters review – fracking with Jesus
    A documentary about North Dakota’s fracking boom turns into a revelatary examination of a flawed individual, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  6. The Great Invisible review: an eloquent return to Deepwater Horizon
    Though at its heart a work of advocacy, this documentary about the aftermath of BP’s disastrous oil spill is nuanced and cinematic
    4 stars
  7. The Babadook review – you’ll scare because you care
    Terrific central performances are the key to writer-director Jennifer Kent’s deeply chilling debut feature, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  8. The Book of Life review – vibrantly alternative animation
    Guillermo del Toro’s creative fingerprints are everywhere in this refreshingly sparky and laugh-out-loud funny family film, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  9. Bogowie review – heart surgery and period kitsch
    The story of a pioneering cardiologist in 1980s Poland is a fast-paced, soapy pleasure, writes Leslie Felperin
    4 stars
  10. John Wick review – a thrill ride driven by a relentless vengeance machine
    Keanu Reeves blasts back in a full-throttle action film that twists the conventions of the genre to exhilarating effect, writes Jordan Hoffman
    4 stars
  11. The Babadook review – a superbly acted, chilling Freudian thriller
    Director Jennifer Kent exerts masterly control over this tense supernatural thriller about a children’s book that one single mother should never have opened, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  12. Trash first look review – Stephen Daldry forages into a favela mystery
    Stunning performances from a trio of young Brazilian actors save Daldry’s compelling tale of corruption from a rubbish ending, writes Jordan Riefe
    4 stars
  13. Citizenfour review – Edward Snowden documentary is utterly engrossing
    Laura Poitras’s brave documentary follows Edward Snowden as his leaks about the activities of the NSA shock the world, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  14. Björk: Biophilia Live review – spirited and millimetre-precise
    Full of dancing microbes and pulsing starfish, this footage of Björk’s last Biophilia concert is impeccably presented, writes Leslie Felperin
    4 stars
  15. The Battles of Coronel and Falkland Islands review – artistically gung-ho
    With its spectacular set pieces, this story of two first-world-war naval battles merits comparisons with Eisenstein, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  16. Cathedrals of Culture review – a palate-cleansing experience
    This meditation on architecture is perhaps not quite a film, but more of a quasi-installation, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  17. William Kelly’s War review – big-minded small-budget war movie
    Geoff Davis filmed his battle scenes on the family farm and cast his sons as leads in a film that falls down on its screenplay, writes Luke Buckmaster
    3 stars
  18. Serena review – ripe romantic melodrama
    Much of the gutsiness of the original Appalachian tale is lost in this convoluted adaptation, but Jennifer Lawrence gives a virtuoso performance, writes Mark Kermode
    3 stars
  19. Fury review – Brad Pitt answers the call of duty … in a tank
    This second world war drama is a rousing, old-fashioned film, even if it doesn’t live up to the hype, writes Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  20. Serena review – an atmophere of tragic gloom and erotic doom
    Teaming up again with Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence has given us a performance of fierce, bladed intensity, writes Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  21. Jimi: All Is By My Side – rambling with a legend
    André Benjamin gives a fine performance as Hendrix in a meandering biopic, but it needs the punch of great music, finds Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  22. The Book of Life review – dazzling 3D effects outshine a story of love
    This animated adventure based on Mexico’s Day of the Dead festival is crammed with charging bulls, cute piglets and breathless maze-running, writes Mike McCahill
    3 stars
  23. Time Is Illmatic review – Nas goes back to the hood
    This glossy documentary takes rapper Nas back to his lauded Illmatic album and traces the social ills it exposed. News is, they’re still there, writes Henry Barnes
    3 stars
  24. The Way He Looks review – touching tale of young love in São Paulo
    Ace performances and positive messages about disability and teen sexuality impress – even if everyone’s a little too nice to be true, writes Leslie Felperin
    3 stars
  25. Black Butler review – stilted revenge thriller with kitschy charms
    This Japanese live-action version of the manga and anime classic has a fun futuristic spin, even if the dialogue and performances are stilted, writes Anna Smith
    3 stars
  26. The Judge review – cliche-ridden courtroom drama
    A hotshot city lawyer is forced to defend his estranged father in this humdrum, sentimental thriller starring Robert Downey Jr, writes Mark Kermode
    3 stars
  27. The Best of Me review – young lovers reunite
    Mark Kermode can’t help but fall for the latest bonkers Nicholas Sparks adaptation
    3 stars
  28. The Judge review – part family drama, part courtroom gripper
    There are plenty of emotional fireworks in this big, soupy but entertaining picture, writes Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  29. Palo Alto review – unexpectedly engaging California teen angst
    Jack Kilmer, son of Val, carries this drama – directed by Francis Ford Coppola’s granddaughter Gia – with unaffected charm, writes Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  30. Horns review – sympathy for the devil? Nope
    There’s a smart black comedy trying to get out of this lumbering horror, but it – and Daniel Radcliffe – is devilishly dull, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  31. Ouija review – rudimentary horror conjures a supernatural branding opportunity
    Bland everyteens commune with the dead in producer Michael Bay and Hasbro’s product-placement of a movie, writes Mike McCahill
    2 stars
  32. Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day review – unremarkable heart-warmer
    There are slapstick chuckles in this adaptation of Judith Viorst’s popular children’s story, but little spark, writes Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  33. Love, Rosie review – overwrought tale of missed chances
    Habitual bad timing is not enough to make a great rom-com, as this Cecelia Ahern adaptation shows, writes Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  34. 23 Blast review – blind footballer fable drops the ball
    Nice folk help a nice boy overcome obstacles and play high-school football again – without the interference of the modern world, writes Jordan Hoffman
    2 stars
  35. Night Train to Lisbon review – Jeremy Irons revives his penchant for dramas
    This might be more suited to a Sunday afternoon TV slot, but I have a soft spot for Irons in these roles, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  36. The Knife That Killed Me review – earnest, anti-violence school drama
    Laudable aims and impressive, highly stylised visual effects are undermined by painfully weak acting, writes Leslie Felperin
    2 stars
  37. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles review – pointless return of crime-fighting reptiles
    This animated remake of 1990’s box-office smash is overblown and witless, writes Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  38. Palo Alto review – listless portrait of American adolescence
    Teenagers drift from one party to the next in Gia Coppola’s uneventful debut, writes Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  39. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles review – total turtle turkey
    Producer Michael Bay’s attempt at repackaging the recurrent reptiles in live-action form is over-rehearsed, insubstantial, shiny and empty, writes Mike McCahill
    2 stars
  40. United We Fall review – football comedy with unfunny sleaze
    This badly edited mockumentary about made-up Man United stars would struggle to raise a smile from Alex Ferguson, writes Leslie Felperin
    2 stars
  41. My Name Is Hmmm (Je m’appelle Hmmm) review – fundamentally misjudged
    Agnès B speckles her movie with nouvelle vague mannerisms and Godardian flourishes, but it never comes alive, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  42. The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman review – a fantastically uninteresting thriller
    Shia LaBeouf’s latest thriller – set in Romania for unclear reasons – is full of terrible accents, scary foreigners and absolutely nothing enjoyable whatsoever, writes Peter Bradshaw
    1 star
  43. This Is Where I Leave You review – Tina Fey is let down by this nonsense
    dHow is the genius behing TV’s 30 Rock involved in this fatuous, humourless, pseudo-bittersweet dramedy, wonders Peter Bradshaw
    1 star
  44. United We Fall review – football comedy that deserves a kicking
    This spoof Man United documentary was shot in six days and it shows, writes Mark Kermode
    1 star
  45. The Best of Me review – health warning: high sugar content
    High-school sweethearts are reunited in this nostalgic Nicholas Sparks romance, writes Peter Bradshaw
    1 star
  46. Antenna film festival review – internet addiction and an autistic man's quest for love
    Chinese teens sent to boot camp and af 29-year-old on a road trip to lose his virginity are among the stories covered in the fourth year of Sydney’s documentary film festival, writes Michael Safi
    unrated
  47. I Clowns review – Philip French on Fellini’s beautifully made 1970 documentary/memoir
    Circuses often figured in Fellini’s films, never more so than in this beautifully made 1970 movie, writes Philip French
    unrated
  48. Salvatore Giuliano review – Philip French on the ‘Marxist Citizen Kane’
    This gripping film centring on the death of an outlaw in postwar Italy features marries political intrigue with beautiful black-and-white cinematography, writes Philip French
    unrated
  49. DVDs and downloads: Two Days, One Night; Belle; Walking on Sunshine; Maleficent; Cold in July and more
    Marion Cotillard, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and Hannah Arterton bravely come to the rescue of a mixed bag of cinematic genres, writes Guy Lodge
    unrated
  50. The Fun Factory by Chris England review – Charlie Chaplin as the baddie
    A brilliantly readable debut about music hall skulduggery and Fred Karno's famous theatrical troupe, writes James Smart
    unrated
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By Gideon Goldberg