General Consensus: No Strings Attached (2011)

It’s been gone for a while, but it’s back. I’ve been trying to think of a way that I can return some link love for all those critics/blogs that I love to read.  Since I love reading reviews of films that I’ve seen what I’ll do is each week whatever new release that I review here I will post what I think the General Consensus of the movie is by posting short snippets of many reviews here.  Check it out below:

So here’s how this is going to work.  Since I want to create an average score for the film (like my own blogosphere only version of RT or IMDB) I will only count reviews that have a rating.  If your rating is letter graded then I will convert it using High School style grades (i.e. A = 9/10, B = 8/10, C = 7/10, D = 5/10, F = 3/10).  I’ll definitely mention other, non-scaled reviews, but they won’t be calculated into the overall General Consensus.

No Strings Attached

Directed By: Ivan Reitman

Written by: Elizabeth Meriwether & Michael Samonek

Starring: Natalie Portman, Ashton Kutcher, Greta Gerwig, Ludacris & Jake M. Johnson

This movie doesn’t break new ground on the “sex leads to feelings and possibly a relationship” cliche, but that doesn’t mean it’s not great fun to watch. – Jess from Insight Into Entertainment. Grade: 8.0/10

Romantic comedies are what I used to think were the easiest going film genres of all time. You get two charming, quirky, funny leads and ask them to smile as each of them are cute and sweet to each other. I go in, I chuckle, smirk and smile at these two people falling in love. However, somewhere along the way it became a little too common place and the jokes just stopped being funny, the grand gesture stopped being effective and that first moment stopped being cute. – Andrew from Gman Reviews. Grade: 3.5/10

Sure, the characters have new names and new jobs and all that good stuff, but they’re essentially going through all the same ups and downs that everyone else has gone through before them. – Aiden R. from Cut The Crap Movie Reviews. Grade: 3.0/10

Between the bad direction, worse script, and lazy performances, No Strings Attached is a triple threat. – Colin from FilmJunk. Grade: 5.0/10

No Strings Attached wants to have its cake and eat kitty too, but the line between fun romance and raunch is a tough one to walk. The most recent film to get it right was Going the Distance, but for an example of one that people actually saw you’d have to go back to 1998′s There’s Something About Mary. Both of those feature big laughs combined with a romance that you want to see succeed, but this latest film features neither. – Rob Hunter from Film School Rejects. Grade: C- (6.5/10)

The film’s greatest success is in screenwriter Elizabeth Meriwether managing to tell a story everyone in the theater knows how it’s going to turn out and doing it with a modicum of reality. – Brad Brevet from Rope of Silicon. Grade: C (7.0/10)

When critics dismiss the romantic-comedy genre, they’re talking about films like No Strings Attached.  Not every film needs to challenge its viewer, but No Strings Attached barely bothers to show up.  It coasts on its telegenic lead actors, but never takes advantage of their comic timing or bothers to see if they play well off each other. – Matt Goldberg from Collider. Grade: D (5.0/10)

This is a strange film. Its premise is so much more transgressive than its execution. It’s as if the 1970s never happened, let alone subsequent decades. Emma and Adam aren’t modern characters. They’re sitcom characters allowed to go all the way like grown-ups. – Roger Ebert. Grade: 5.0/10

Reitman is slavishly faithful to the romcom handbook, a blueprint which reasons, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! Or, even if it is broke, don’t bother improving it! – from Obsessed With Film. Grade: 4.0/10

It’s not lazy so much as it is safe. The film jumps through familiar hoops just at the moment it shouldn’t. Still, No String Attached is enough to slow the rapid death of a once-revered type of film and keep alive the hope that Mr. Reitman the senior has at least one more great comedy left in him. At least for now. – Dan Mecca from The Film Stage. Grade: C+ (7.5/10)

Avg. Score: 5.5/10

General Consensus: Black Swan (2010)

It’s been gone for a while, but it’s back. I’ve been trying to think of a way that I can return some link love for all those critics/blogs that I love to read.  Since I love reading reviews of films that I’ve seen what I’ll do is each week whatever new release that I review here I will post what I think the General Consensus of the movie is by posting short snippets of many reviews here.  Check it out below:

So here’s how this is going to work.  Since I want to create an average score for the film (like my own blogosphere only version of RT or IMDB) I will only count reviews that have a rating.  If your rating is letter graded then I will convert it using High School style grades (i.e. A = 9/10, B = 8/10, C = 7/10, D = 5/10, F = 3/10).  I’ll definitely mention other, non-scaled reviews, but they won’t be calculated into the overall General Consensus.

Black Swan

Directed by: Darren Aronofsky

Written by: Mark Heyman & Andres Heinz

Starring: Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis & Vincent Cassel

Reviews

On paper, I would be interested in Black Swan it purely for the fact that it’s set in a dance world and has fantastic, and fantastical, art direction. The trouble is, Black Swan is not a dance film. It’s set in the world of dance, but it is not a dance film. Things that happen in the film, would never happen in the world of dance. Every giving some breathing room that the film needs for it’s aloof off-centre on purpose misdirection to keep you unbalance, there are still things that would never fly in the world of dance. I will give it that it has great art direction, costuming and make up, which I actually wish we got to see more of because it was absolutely stunning. – Shannon the Movie Moxie. Grade: N/A

Performance wise the entire cast really complimented each other well and brought out the best in each other. Portman really was just incredible in this film putting in an unreal performance, she has totally deserved all the praise and awards for this film. I really do think she will be walking away with the Oscar. – Let’s Go To The Movies. Grade: N/A

Structurally the story unfolds like a fairytale, echoing and spun from the Swan Lake ballet itself (though not technically an adaptation according to the director). That each of the characters are listed alongside their Swan Lake equivalents in the closing credits acts as a punch line, confirming suspicions of similarities between Aronofsky’s film and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s ballet. – Adam Batty from Clothes on Film. Grade: N/A

There’s not really a twist per se at the end of Black Swan, but the process of experiencing the breakdown and horror with Nina is what makes the film so effective. As in Pi Aronofsky places you subjectively inside the head of someone whose grasp on reality has always been tenuous; there’s nothing to hang on to, and it’s disorienting and thrilling to spiral along with Nina towards a dark, unknowable end. – Devin Faraci from The Badass Digest. Grade: N/A

Black Swan is absolutely astounding. Clint Mansell has scored every one of Aronofsky’s films, and between Requiem for the Dream and The Fountain has crafted some of the best and most iconic film music of all time. Compared to his work on those films, the Black Swan score is far less bombastic; instead, Mansell reinforces moments of fear, triumph, eroticism and despair with precise classical pieces, often incorporating themes from Tchaikovsky’s magnificent ballet into his own original tracks. – Tom Clift. Grade: N/A

Her performance as Nina is one of the bravest, astute, and perceptive performances in her, (or most actresses) career. Not only is the role more physically demanding than characters in most action films, there is a delicateness to the character’s psyche that could only be accessed by actresses of a very select caliber. Portman’s ability to readily display such a complex persona at every moment – and she is on screen for nearly every moment of the film – makes Black Swan a wholly immersive experience. – This Guy Over There. Grade: N/A

The narrative is all over the place, but that’s obviously the point. “Black Swan” represents the world as seen by Nina, and as she grows crazier her point of view becomes increasingly less reliable. Aronofsky captures this through a distorted yet vividly designed aesthetic, showcasing bizarre camera angles and applying a highly kinetic polish to the picture. The ballet sequences are wildly engaging, Aronofsky always keeping the camera moving in order to accurately depict the speed and elegance such an art form possesses. – Daniel Kelly from Eat Sleep Live Film. Grade: 10/10

I was expecting this to be something like Powell and Pressburger by way of Argento, but it has more in common with early Cronenberg and it reminded me somewhat of David Lynch’s excellent Mulholland Drive, especially towards the end where we’re never sure what is real and what is a projection of Nina’s mental decline, leaving the viewer questioning what it is that they have just seen. – Stephanie Scaife from Eat Sleep Live Film. Grade: 8.0/10

The film in its simplest form is exactly what Thomas (Vincent Cassel) wanted to do with the play. It’s a stripped down version of the original Tchaikovsky ballet. It expands the story into not only the ballet that’s being put on by the company but is actually the story of the overall film which I love. Darren Aronofsky (probably my more objective favourite working director) found a way to seamlessly transition the stories of the ballet and the dancer who’s staring in the ballet without making it distracting at all. – Andrew from Gman Reviews. Grade: 10/10

Mila Kunis does her best and most layered role to date, and Cassel (the screentime he’s given) is as solid as ever. I’ve adored him as one of the best European cross-over actors ever since I saw the masterpiece that isLa Haine. Kunis on the other hand, is only known for comedy, and her strong personality does shine through the role, but it suits it she brings in a very effortless character in Lily. – Split Reel. Grade: 8.5/10

Black Swan is anchored by Natalie Portman’s fierce performance. Like the movie, she first deceives us with her fragile beauty and we are led to assume this will be yet another of the actress’ performances in which her delicate features harbor contrived fear and contempt. Soon we learn that this isn’t the case and we see her shatter before our very eyes. – Jose from Movies Kick Ass. Grade: 10/10

I liked how the story touches on themes such as obsession over one’s work, and perfection, but the story had me pretty bummed. The film tells us the story of the play within this film, Swan Lake, which is all fine and dandy, until we start to realize that the play itself almost mirrors exactly what’s going to happen to these characters in real life. So the idea of not knowing what’s going to happen next was almost dead for me, except for some parts, that actually did throw me off, so the film wasn’t totally doomed. – Dan The Man’s Movie Reviews. Grade: 9.0/10

To capture that Aronofsky brilliantly uses mirrors. At every turn, twist, and move, Nina is constantly being reminded of how she looks. Interestingly still, the mirrors represent something entirely unique for Nina. When she looks into them she sees not herself, but a projection of all the things she can’t see elsewhere. All her faults and transformations are bundled up into the mirrors, and only they can show her what she fears she is, or what she wishes to be. – Ryan Helms from A Life in Equinox. Grade: 8.75/10

The scenes of Nina’s metamorphoses are slightly horrifying but at the same time infinitely mesmerizing. Tchaikovsky’s music and based on it score by Clint Mansell add tragedy and beauty to the actors’ performances. Graceful dancing numbers are incredibly directed and acted. – Lesya from Eternity of Dream. Grade: 10/10

Aronofsky transcends the familiarity in the stories he tells by burying it in his unique vision propelled by endless cinematic influence.  With Black Swan, we find him casting light on another troubled soul.  That light, it turns out, also produces endless shadow. – CyniCritics. Grade: A (9.0/10)

When Black Swan starts, you don’t know what you’re getting and it initally comes off like it’s going to be The Wrestlerwith ballerinas. And while it somewhat follows in that movie’s footsteps (you can feel similarities here and there), it’s something all its own; this is a character study with a psychological thriller thrown in for good measure. – Jonathan Sullivan from Movie Mobsters. Grade: 10/10

Vincent Cassel and Barbara Hershey will most certainly be the unsung heroes of the film, as they’re performances are so pitch perfect, you forget the fact they’re acting. It would be great to see Cassel get some awards nods. – Blake from BitchinFilmReviews. Grade: 10/10

The film never really establishes if its story is set in a fantastical world or one based more on our own, a ‘realistic’ one so to speak. Unsurprisingly, the evolution of the plot, in many ways thematically and in some ways structurally, follows that of the actual ballet. – Between the Seats. Grade: A (9.0/10)

Avg Score: 9.4/10

General Consensus: True Grit (2010)

I’ve been trying to think of a way that I can return some link love for all those critics/blogs that I love to read.  Since I love reading reviews of films that I’ve seen what I’ll do is each week whatever new release that I review here I will post what I think the General Consensus of the movie is by posting short snippets of many reviews here.  Check it out below:

So here’s how this is going to work.  Since I want to create an average score for the film (like my own blogosphere only version of RT or IMDB) I will only count reviews that have a rating.  If your rating is letter graded then I will convert it using High School style grades (i.e. A = 9/10, B = 8/10, C = 7/10, D = 5/10, F = 3/10).  I’ll definitely mention other, non-scaled reviews, but they won’t be calculated into the overall General Consensus. Continue reading

General Consensus: Gulliver’s Travels, The Tourist, Tangled

I’ve been trying to think of a way that I can return some link love for all those critics/blogs that I love to read.  Since I love reading reviews of films that I’ve seen what I’ll do is each week whatever new release that I review here I will post what I think the General Consensus of the movie is by posting short snippets of many reviews here.  Check it out below:

So here’s how this is going to work.  Since I want to create an average score for the film (like my own blogosphere only version of RT or IMDB) I will only count reviews that have a rating.  If your rating is letter graded then I will convert it using High School style grades (i.e. A = 9/10, B = 8/10, C = 7/10, D = 5/10, F = 3/10).  I’ll definitely mention other, non-scaled reviews, but they won’t be calculated into the overall General Consensus. Continue reading

General Consensus: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, Morning Glory, Faster

I’ve been trying to think of a way that I can return some link love for all those critics/blogs that I love to read.  Since I love reading reviews of films that I’ve seen what I’ll do is each week whatever new release that I review here I will post what I think the General Consensus of the movie is by posting short snippets of many reviews here.  Check it out below:

So here’s how this is going to work.  Since I want to create an average score for the film (like my own blogosphere only version of RT or IMDB) I will only count reviews that have a rating.  If your rating is letter graded then I will convert it using High School style grades (i.e. A = 9/10, B = 8/10, C = 7/10, D = 5/10, F = 3/10).  I’ll definitely mention other, non-scaled reviews, but they won’t be calculated into the overall General Consensus. Continue reading