Five star - Film Reviews

Latest Guardian Film Reviews sorted by Star Rating. Cut the crap!
  1. Duck Soup review – brazen satire of tinpot nationalism
    The Marx brothers’ vaudeville-originated comedy requires a little acclimatisation now, but the silliness levels are inspiring, writes Peter Bradshaw
    5 stars
  2. The Last of the Unjust review – doc about a divisive Holocaust survivor
    Claude Lanzmann’s fascinating interview with the only Jewish ‘elder’ who negotiated with Adolf Eichmann is a subtle study in survivor non-guilt, writes Peter Bradshaw
    5 stars
  3. Foxcatcher review – superb variant on the underdog sports movie
    Steve Carell, Channing Tatum and Mark Ruffalo give career-best performances in the horribly magnificent true story of the billionaire who mentored the US Olympic wrestling team, writes Peter Bradshaw
    5 stars
  4. Sundance 2015 review: The Diary of a Teenage Girl – today I slept with Alexander Skarsgård
    San Francisco in the swinging 1970s and our 17-year-old heroine is either out partying with mum Kristen Wiig or back in bed with her boyfriend. It makes for a heady schedule, writes Brian Moylan
    4 stars
  5. Ex Machina review – dazzling sci-fi thriller
    Alex Garland’s directorial debut is full of confidence and wit, with Alicia Vikander blurring the lines between human and machine, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  6. La Maison de le radio review – a beautifully observed study of Radio France
    A documentary about the great French radio station is intimate and affectionate, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  7. A Most Violent Year review – 1980s New York comes to life in all its murky brilliance
    Jessica Chastain and Oscar Isaac are quietly engrossing in an edgy crime thriller, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  8. Sundance 2015 review: The End of the Tour – Jason Segel passes infinite test of playing David Foster Wallace

    James Ponsoldt’s compassionate, fascinating – and unauthorised – study of the great, late American novelist focuses on a five day road trip with a foe-turned-bro journo played by Jesse Eisenberg

    4 stars
  9. Sundance 2015 review: Finders Keepers – so you've found a foot in your BBQ …
    There’s much to savour in this deep fried documentary about a man who finds a foot in his second-hand barbacue – and how reality TV handled it
    4 stars
  10. Sundance 2015 review: James White – upscale indie flick intent to impress
    A new movie from the same Sundance-friendly stable which produced Simon Killer and Martha Marcy May Marlene proves itself easily their equal – and often their superior
    4 stars
  11. Sundance 2015 review: The Witch – a focus on themes over plot elevate it to near greatness
    Robert Eggers’s horror film about a child’s abduction and a Puritan family’s descent into hysteria delivers high-wire tension amid heightened dialogue
    4 stars
  12. Beyond Clueless review – hypnotic, narcotic teen movie collage
    Charlie Lyne’s brilliant cine-essay assembles clips from more than 200 films – good and bad, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  13. A Most Violent Year review – blood, oil and tears on the waterfront
    In JC Chandor’s intense, 80s-set drama, an ambitious wheeler-dealer on New York’s perilous waterfront tries to detoxify his business, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  14. Whiplash review – drumming up the tension nicely
    The struggles of a young drummer at an elite music school make for gripping viewing, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  15. Wild review – gritty portrait of a true-life wandering star
    Reese Witherspoon shines in Nick Hornby’s captivating adaptation of Cheryl Strayed’s memoir of self-discovery, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  16. Whiplash review – the Full Metal Jacket of jazz drumming
    JK Simmons is thrillingly brutal as a pop-eyed drum teacher– but does this very watchable classroom drama have anything deep to impart, asks Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  17. The Last of the Unjust review – Claude Lanzmann’s profound reflections on Theresienstadt and the Holocaust
    Claude Lanzmann’s fascinating 1975 interview with Benjamin Murmelstein finally gets a cinematic release, writes Mark Kermode
    4 stars
  18. National Gallery review – a monumental study of a secular cathedral
    Frederick Wiseman’s calm, reverent documentary gets behind the scenes and under the skin of the great museum, writes Peter Bradshaw
    4 stars
  19. Beyond Clueless review – inside the world of teen movies
    Charlie Lyne looks affectionately at how high schools have been portrayed in cinema, writes Mark Kermode
    3 stars
  20. Sundance 2015 review: Entertainment – a comedy about emotional collapse and existential despair
    Rick Alverson’s wincingly funny new film follows the anti-comedy performer Gregg Turkington, aka Neil Hamburger, on a road trip to the centre of a harrowing abyss, writes Jordan Hoffman
    3 stars
  21. Sundance 2015 review: Stockholm, Pennsylvania - a hostage to fortune cookie logic
    Saoirsie Ronan returns to her parents after a childhood spent with an abductor in a Sundance drama which starts superbly subtle, then brings out the sledgehammer
    3 stars
  22. Sundance 2015 review: True Story - Jonah Hill and James Franco can't handle it
    The tale of a fired New York Times reporter whose identity is nicked by an accused killer sounds like a gift. Jordan Hoffman finds something hollow beneath the cinematic wrapping
    3 stars
  23. Sundance 2015 first look review: What Happened, Miss Simone? – a remarkable life, painted by numbers
    Liz Garbus belongs to the Wikipedia-as-cinema school of formulaic documentary-making, and yet Nina Simone’s music and style inevitably shine through, writes Jordan Hoffman
    3 stars
  24. Ex Machina review – an elegant but limited artificial intelligence thriller
    Alex Garland’s AI thriller feels a bit like a decent short story bulked out to movie length, but it’s done with confidence, writes Peter Brasdhaw
    3 stars
  25. La Maison de la Radio review – engaging portrait of a French radio station
    Made before the Charlie Hebdo attacks, this look inside the Paris offices of Radio France already seems like a remnant of a more innocent age, writes Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  26. Testament of Youth review – tame adaptation of Vera Brittain’s book
    The classic war memoir deserves a more adventurous retelling, writes Mark Kermode
    3 stars
  27. American Sniper review – Bradley Cooper stars in real-life tale of ‘legendary’ marksman
    Clint Eastwood’s bleak thriller about navy Seal Chris Kyle would have benefited from a dissenting voice, writes Mark Kermode
    3 stars
  28. Wild review – interestingly gendered wilderness trek
    Reese Witherspoon’s intelligence raises Jean-Marc Vallée’s film above the average ‘personal-growth’ story, writes Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  29. Paper Planes review – a heart-on-sleeve tournament movie for the kids
    A look into the competitive world of paper plane throwing comes with big, sweet, greetings card-style messages driven by its charming young cast, writes Luke Buckmaster
    3 stars
  30. Erebus: Into the Unknown review – documentary brings to life 1979 Antarctic air crash
    Interviews and dramatic reconstructions shed new light on the moment when Air New Zealand Flight 901 crashed into Mount Erebus, writes Mark Kermode
    3 stars
  31. Erebus: Into the Unknown review – a too-brief true tale of Antarctic terror
    This documentary about a recovery mission following a plane crash that claimed 257 lives isn’t given the time it deserves, writes Peter Bradshaw
    3 stars
  32. Girl With a Pearl Earring and Other Treaures from the Mauritshuis review
    Not quite a substitute for the exhibition experience, and not quite a film in its own right, this PR exercise for the Dutch gallery is nevertheless not without interest, writes Andrew Pulver
    3 stars
  33. The Gambler review – stylish direction can’t disguise deeper flaws
    Mark Wahlberg is hopelessly miscast as a professor of creative writing, writes Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  34. Sundance 2015 review: The Amina Profile – a cautionary catfish tale
    This documentary about the Gay Girl in Damascus blogger who hoaxed the world’s media – and ‘her’ girlfriend – has none of the gravitas its director thinks it should, writes Jordan Hoffman
    2 stars
  35. Sundance 2015 review: 6 Desires: DH Lawrence and Sardinia – Mark Cousins is lost somewhere over The Rainbow
    Mark Cousins’s experimental travelogue in the footsteps of DH Lawrence will inspire viewers to return to the books – anything other than the screen
    2 stars
  36. The Gambler review – Mark Wahlberg is unconvincing in a contrived remake
    The 1974 film scripted by James Toback is relocated to Los Angeles, and turned into something pretty preposterous in the process, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  37. Mortdecai review – mostly awful Johnny Depp caper with a few good gags
    There are glimmers of humour in this tale of an international man of mystery chasing a stolen work of art, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  38. The Boy Next Door review – Jennifer Lopez suffers reverse Fatal Attraction
    It’s not as campy as Showgirls, but Lopez’s cougar tryst gone awry with a young neighborhood buck makes the perfect accompaniment to white zinfandel on tap
    2 stars
  39. Paper Souls (Les âmes de papier) review – supernatural comedy with hints of Woody Allen
    A writer of funeral orations is visited by a ghost in a fantasy that’s cliched but occasionally poignant, says Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  40. Point and Shoot review – profile of a macho misfit
    A wannabe American action hero takes up arms in Libya in a sporadically arresting documentary, writes Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  41. American Sniper review – worryingly dull celebration of a killer
    Clint Eastwood wastes Bradley Cooper in an unsubtle biopic of a famous US Navy Seal sharp-shooter, says Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  42. Testament of Youth review – too-tastefully contoured commemoration
    Alicia Vikander has beauty and poise as first world war memorist Vera Brittain, but the film has an unsettling tendency towards heritage cinema, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  43. Point and Shoot review – a very selfie adventure
    This documentary about an intrepid American who wound up fighting in Libya contains many amazing images - but way too many of the man who took them, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  44. Paper Souls review – cloyingly contrived
    This Paris-set, Woody Allen-inspired comedy about a writer of funeral orations contains one too many layers of unreality, writes Peter Bradshaw
    2 stars
  45. Into the Woods review – not even Meryl Streep can rescue this sanitised take on a stage hit
    Revisionist fairytale mash-up is undone by its ‘irritating naffness’ and smug message, writes Mark Kermode
    2 stars
  46. Mortdecai review - art world hokum
    Johnny Depp is insufferable in a dismally unfunny comic thriller with only one decent joke, writes Mark Kermode
    1 star
  47. Taken 3 review – a lack of originality is the least of its problems
    Liam Neeson looks bored to tears in Olivier Megaton’s going-through-the-motions thriller, writes Mark Kermode
    1 star
  48. Les Misérables review – Philip French on the best screen version of Victor Hugo’s seminal thriller
    Harry Baur and Charles Vanel tower over Raymond Bernard’s handsomely restored masterpiece, writes Philip French
    unrated
  49. I’m All Right Jack review – Philip French on the Boulting brothers’ biting state-of-the-nation satire
    Peter Sellers and Ian Carmichael sum up Britain’s class divide on the eve of the 60s, writes Philip French
    unrated
  50. The Exorcist review – Philip French on William Friedkin’s stark, demonic horror
    Graphic yet subtle, this deeply Catholic movie about a young girl possessed by the devil still chills, writes Philip French
    unrated
Next page (older reviews)
Powered by the Guardian
By Gideon Goldberg