mother cinemascore

mother! is polarizing, to say the least.

While critics have lauded the film for its provocative and daring narrative with an absolutely off-the-rails third act — while also eliciting a fair share of both revulsion and reverence amongst them — audiences are firmly against Darren Aronofsky‘s newest film. Blame it on misleading marketing, or star Jennifer Lawrence drawing in fans who “just wouldn’t get it,” but mother! has earned the rare “F” grade on Cinemascore.

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hollywood blames rotten tomatoes

Hollywood just had one of its worst summer seasons at the box office in 20 years. And rather than blame sequel fatigue, cinematic universe fatigue, or rapidly increasing ticket prices, executives are pointing their finger at one culprit: Rotten Tomatoes.

The movie review aggregation website has been the bane of the industry — and some film critics — for years, getting accused of reducing nuanced film reviews to a good-or-bad scale. And industry insiders say that its growing omniscience on Google and ticket sales websites like Fandango are steering audiences away from movies that get bad Rotten Tomatoes scores. But is Rotten Tomatoes really solely at fault?

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Norm of the North

People sometimes talk about “the critics” as if they were a single monolithic entity, as in “the critics love Carol” or “the critics hate Paul Blart.” In truth, though, it’s uncommon for critics to reach unanimous consensus on much of anything. Film criticism is highly subjective by its very nature, which means even the most gorgeously wrought masterpieces will leave some viewers unmoved, while even the most lazily slapped together dreck will tickle a few people in the right spots.

Uncommon, that is, but not unheard of. There are rare occasions where the film reviewers will rise up as one to give a film a perfect 0% score on Rotten Tomatoes. In 2016, the first film to achieve that dubious distinction is Norm of the North, Lionsgate’s animated adventure about a polar bear (voiced by Rob Schneider) trying to stop real estate development in the Arctic.  Read More »

Team America sold out

They say any publicity is good publicity, and apparently that’s even the case if your movie starts an international incident. Thanks to Sony’s delay of The Interview, interest in not only that film, but other similar ones, has risen exponentially. For example, Trey Parker and Matt Stone‘s 2004 comedy Team America: World Police (which Paramount wouldn’t allow to be screened in the middle of this controversy) sold out on Amazon.com. Plus, though the large majority of people haven’t seen The Interview, tens of thousands of them have voted the film up on IMDB. At one point, it was rated a staggering 10 out of 10. Read more about each below. Read More »

Hobbit Battle of the Five Armies review

December is upon us, which means there are mere days until the final Peter Jackson Middle-Earth film comes to theaters. The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies opens December 17 and the review embargo just broke. Let’s just say the notes aren’t as good as the ones for the final Lord of the Rings film, which won 11 Oscars including Best Picture. They also aren’t as bad as the reviews for previous films in this new trilogy. It’s a bit all over the map, but most seem to agree if you like the other films, you’ll really like this one. Read some early The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies review below. Read More »

Early Buzz Transformers Age of Extinction

Though it picks up after the events Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Transformers: Age of Extinction isn’t just a sequel but also a quasi-reboot. It introduces a new cast of human characters and is intended to jumpstart a fresh trilogy.

But for everything that’s changed about the series, more things have stayed the same — at least if the first reviews are to be believed. Hit the jump to read the early buzz on Transformers: Age of Extinction. Potential spoilers ahead, as there are few points in the reviews that aren’t obvious from the marketing so far.

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How to Train Your Dragon 2 - Hiccup and Astrid

One of the biggest and most anticipated films of the summer, How to Train Your Dragon 2, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival Friday. It was the first public screening of the sequel, which continues the story of Hiccup (Jay Baruchel) and Toothless in the kingdom of Berk. Buzz around the project has been solid but now that respected critics from around the world have seen the film, is it as good as we all hoped? The answer is…mostly.

Below read some early How to Train Your Dragon 2 reviews. Read More »

The Grand Budapest Hotel

Film fans have been anticipating The Grand Budapest Hotel since just after the credits rolled on Moonrise Kingdom. Wes Anderson is one of a select group of filmmakers who can be relied upon to craft a special film, no matter what it is about or who is in it. With Anderson’s latest kicking off the Berlin Film Festival Thursday, the first batch of reviews have hit Twitter and various websites. They’re almost uniformly ecstatic.

The Grand Budapest Hotel opens March 7 in the U.S. but read some of the first reviews below. Read More »

Best Movies of 2013, According to IMDb Users

Waar

Over the past few weeks, and for the next few months, discussions will center on the best films of 2013. I did a list, the /Filmcast did a list and innumerable others will do the same leading up to the moment the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences crowns their best film of the year with the Best Picture Oscar.

But what do even bigger audiences think? Many film fans don’t have a blog, paper or podcast to spout off on. Many of those people turn to the Internet Movie Database to vote on the films they loved best in any given year. Now, the IMDB has published their top 50 films of 2013 according to over 10,000 users. Check it out below. Read More »

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SAVING MR. BANKS

Disney has three big films coming out this holiday season, but only one is about the company itself. That’s Saving Mr. Banks, the true story of Walt Disney’s courting of author P.L. Travers for the rights to her book, Mary Poppins. Directed by John Lee Hancock (The Blind Side), the film features Tom Hanks as Disney and Emma Thompson as Travers. It opens December 13 in the U.S. but had its world premiere this weekend at the London Film Festival.

So how is it? The first reviews are out and while everyone seems to agree there’s plenty of Disney magic, and some people even smell Oscars, a few don’t necessarily think it works. Read a bunch of reviews below. Read More »