Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Coraline Is Certified Fresh

Plus, the critics just aren't that into He's Just Not That Into You, Pink Panther 2, and Push, to varying degrees.

by | February 5, 2009 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got dark whimsy (Coraline, with voice work by Dakota Fanning and Teri Hatcher); love mishaps (He’s Just Not That Into You, starring Jennifer Aniston and Scarlett Johansson); a bumbling detective (The Pink Panther 2, starring Steve Martin and Aishwarya Rai) and some paranormal antagonists (Push, starring Chris Evans and Djimon Hounsou). What do the critics have to say?


[tomatometer]MuzeID=1189949[/tomatometer]

Coraline

If any proof were needed that 3-D movies have entered a bold new era, the critics say Coraline is it; this stylistically bold, emotionally resonant stop-motion flick is a twisted marvel. Directed by Henry Selick (who helmed the bewitchingly macabre The Nightmare Before Christmas) and based upon the best seller by Neil Gaiman, Coraline follows the phantasmagoric exploits of the title character (voiced by Dakota Fanning), a bored 11-year-old who discovers a door in her house that leads to a parallel version of her life — one that at first is enchanting, but soon threatens to entrap our hero. The pundits say Coraline is one of the most visually dazzling pictures to come along in many a moon, and it’s anchored by a delightfully twisted storyline. It’s not only Certified Fresh, it’s also the best-reviewed wide release of the year so far. (Be forewarned, however; the scribes say this film may be too scary for small children.)



[tomatometer]MuzeID=1192140[/tomatometer]

He’s Just Not That Into You

He’s Just Not That Into You is the latest in a long line of romantic comedies that attempt to navigate the complexities of modern relationships. The movie’s problem, critics say, is that by juggling so many plot threads it ends up giving a short shrift to characterization and insight. An embarrassment of talented actors (including Jennifer Aniston, Drew Barrymore, Scarlett Johansson, Ben Affleck, and Jennifer Connelly) play Baltimore residents who are attempting to find the perfect match, but are regularly stymied by self-questioning and unreturned phone calls. The pundits say the film is bogged down by the fact that there’s too much going on for the characters to emerge as three-dimensional personalities, thus reducing its talented thespians (despite their best efforts) to playing stereotypes.



[tomatometer]MuzeID=1190694[/tomatometer]

The Pink Panther 2

As the self-important, supremely incompetent, and impenetrably-accented Inspector Clouseau, Peter Sellers created one of the most memorable comic characters of modern times. Steve Martin is a very funny guy too, but critics say that’s not enough to redeem The Pink Panther 2‘s uninspired script and tired gags. In the second installment starring Martin, Clouseau is enlisted into a team of super detectives in order to track down some priceless cultural artifacts that have been purloined by a rogue named the Tornado. The pundits say that like its predecessor, The Pink Panther 2 is a “beumb”; it’s aimlessly plotted and emphasizes lame slapstick gags at the expense of the considerable talents of Martin, John Cleese, Lily Tomlin, Jeremy Irons, and Aishwarya Rai, among others. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we explore Martin’s best-reviewed movies, and click here for co-star Jean Reno‘s five favorite films.)



[tomatometer]MuzeID=1195186[/tomatometer]

Push

Establishing a credible science fiction world — especially one containing characters with super abilities — is a tall order. Unfortunately, critics say Push isn’t up to it, squandering an intriguing premise with hyperkinetic pacing and a general lack of coherence. Chris Evans plays Nick, who has remarkable paranormal powers and finds himself on the run from unseemly government agents, including the dangerous Henry (Djimon Hounsou), who want to utilize his abilities for their own means. The pundits say that despite director Paul McGuigan‘s visual flair, Push is really hard to follow, with a convoluted script and an excess of style. (Check out our interview with McGuigan, in which he shares his five favorite films with RT.)


Also opening this week in limited release:

  • Chocolate, a bizarre Thai martial arts flick about an autistic girl with remarkable fighting skills, is at 71 percent.
  • Our City Dreams, a documentary about a year in the life of five female artists in New York City, is at 67 percent.
  • The road trip comedy Fanboys, which follows several Star Wars fanatics on their quest to see The Phantom Menace before its release, is at 27 percent.
  • Memorial Day, a mockumentary about a group of hard-partying soldiers and their bad behavior on leave and in Iraq, is at 14 percent.

Tag Cloud

Watching Series 4/20 criterion Stephen King LGBTQ video Pop miniseries Turner Classic Movies Sundance Awards NBC stand-up comedy Mindy Kaling Film politics SundanceTV Ghostbusters IFC Films Winners based on movie 2015 indiana jones finale Country Classic Film comic free movies Teen DGA Sci-Fi Epix movies Set visit Crackle Elton John Best and Worst Super Bowl children's TV historical drama Women's History Month Reality Brie Larson cooking child's play Cosplay cartoon Emmys Countdown richard e. Grant TCA 2017 blockbuster San Diego Comic-Con The Arrangement HBO Bravo teaser rotten movies we love game of thrones OneApp aliens stoner sitcom HBO Go space Comic Book Spring TV cults toy story El Rey MSNBC disaster Horror sports mission: impossible movie 71st Emmy Awards SXSW Star Wars Podcast Universal Shudder television diversity crime crime drama TCA BAFTA Anna Paquin Pixar canceled TV shows Disney Channel Apple cancelled TV series Amazon Studios screenings TLC FOX ABC sag awards Shondaland Pop TV joker Election foreign franchise Baby Yoda Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt composers satire Crunchyroll TNT Marvel Television vampires reviews parents Thanksgiving Extras Rocky Fantasy revenge christmas movies Photos cancelled television Esquire Marathons MCU Travel Channel spy thriller science fiction mockumentary Tumblr Holidays Reality Competition Mudbound festivals FX SDCC Tubi ABC Family TV Land Ellie Kemper mutant facebook Valentine's Day Comedy latino The Witch Western Christmas Film Festival Hulu streaming reboot CMT kids screen actors guild Netflix Christmas movies Premiere Dates Emmy Nominations psychological thriller Fox News Family Apple TV Plus NYCC spain E! Logo APB werewolf Television Academy Box Office Kids & Family Animation Hallmark The Purge Cartoon Network theme song 2020 docudrama talk show CNN Showtime HBO Max 2017 canceled crime thriller BBC documentaries indie BBC One Warner Bros. award winner A&E TCM American Society of Cinematographers Drama USA IFC Sneak Peek spanish language 2018 critics BET Toys Starz YouTube Red Sony Pictures golden globes RT21 book Nickelodeon Martial Arts MTV New York Comic Con ratings nature 24 frames comics slashers Lifetime animated ghosts Mystery President TV psycho TBS Tomatazos FX on Hulu cinemax CBS Mary poppins Pet Sematary Apple TV+ dramedy The Walking Dead zombie Turner spider-man Tarantino witnail romance Superheroe Action Certified Fresh films news Lucasfilm discovery 2016 Columbia Pictures Superheroes twilight elevated horror Trophy Talk dogs YouTube AMC sequel Awards Tour Amazon transformers Black History Month Spectrum Originals DC Comics Nominations 20th Century Fox binge comedies FXX Arrowverse singing competition Star Trek 21st Century Fox Nat Geo Trailer Infographic Adult Swim all-time E3 First Look Heroines universal monsters thriller Winter TV Dark Horse Comics TCA Winter 2020 Syfy hist breaking bad OWN TIFF harry potter boxoffice Cannes BET Awards VICE Peacock LGBT PBS Avengers Black Mirror south america justice league Hallmark Christmas movies Disney streaming service natural history what to watch quibi strong female leads 45 Paramount DC streaming service cancelled TV shows Acorn TV technology Marvel Creative Arts Emmys biography robots Mary Poppins Returns romantic comedy RT History cops Masterpiece Oscars WGN DC Universe Trivia Opinion Comics on TV DirecTV CBS All Access chucky First Reviews Musical political drama YA TV renewals Polls and Games medical drama adaptation Lifetime Christmas movies Holiday 2019 spinoff Musicals batman Sundance TV VH1 unscripted GIFs Mary Tyler Moore VOD Character Guide adventure Chernobyl a nightmare on elm street blaxploitation GoT series Grammys CW Seed name the review travel Summer Pirates Sundance Now Lionsgate cats directors tv talk A24 period drama Video Games versus Netflix dark Quiz jamie lee curtis Rom-Com Ovation ITV scary movies YouTube Premium Endgame Calendar Captain marvel dc casting National Geographic cars concert Food Network Hear Us Out Fall TV PaleyFest Schedule Writers Guild of America Marvel Studios anime true crime Funimation Academy Awards USA Network dceu serial killer Disney Plus See It Skip It best History Britbox doctor who Song of Ice and Fire 007 Biopics cancelled Freeform Rocketman TruTV supernatural game show Paramount Network Pride Month zero dark thirty Disney Music Comedy Central WarnerMedia halloween police drama comiccon zombies anthology Year in Review Amazon Prime ESPN The CW PlayStation Chilling Adventures of Sabrina GLAAD Binge Guide independent X-Men Interview dragons green book Amazon Prime Video asian-american Rock Red Carpet documentary video on demand war Vudu crossover Disney+ Disney Plus die hard Spike Discovery Channel Walt Disney Pictures social media renewed TV shows BBC America hispanic