Michael Joshua Rowin

Michael Joshua Rowin
Michael Joshua Rowin's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Film Comment Magazine L.A. Weekly Slant Magazine Senses of Cinema Stop Smiling Brooklyn Magazine MUBI

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
2.5/4 96% Little Women (2019) Whenever Little Women slows down, viewers receive a glimpse of how the film might have flowed as a whole. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 25, 2019
2.5/4 93% Dark Waters (2019) Haynes's film intermittently hits upon a few original ways of representing its ripped-from-the-headlines mandate. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 14, 2019
1.5/4 52% Charlie's Angels (2019) All the feminist virtue-signaling in the world can't conceal the film's creative conservatism. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2019
2/4 71% Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) The film is good enough to redeem the bad taste that lingered from its predecessors but too uninspired to make one want more. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 22, 2019
3/4 79% Downtown 81 (2001) This time capsule of bohemian New York distorts its representation of the city for reasons more loving than lazy. - Slant Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 21, 2019
98% The Big Sick (2017) Unfortunately The Big Sick remains fairly standard due to its avoidance of difficult material. - Reverse Shot EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 12, 2017
65% Be Kind Rewind (2008) Be Kind Rewind, while erring just this side of too adorable for its own good - it's nothing if not enjoyable for once again showcasing Gondry's ingenious guerilla filmmaking tactics - is still a bit of a setback. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
92% Blade Runner (The Final Cut) (1982) The final cut seems to simply be an enhanced version of the 1992 director's cut, a technically perfected (Dolby remastered, special effects streamlined) fulfillment of the project Ridley oversaw but admits to rushing. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
76% Sunshine (2007) [Sunshine] delivers the visually incarnate truth of the universe's mysticism. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
75% The Boss of it All (Direktøren for det hele) (2007) If The Boss of It All is forgettable, it's not for its airiness, but for its failed artiness, and for von Trier's failure to be true to his art. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2017
52% Funny Games (2008) Defenders of Funny Games repeatedly point out that it shouldn't be fun. But if it isn't, then it should at least be subversive. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 23, 2017
86% Shine a Light (2008) In many ways [Shine a Light is] an unintentional funeral dance commemorating the vanished vitality and subversive potential of mainstream rock 'n' roll and celebrating its current utility as a nostalgic anodyne. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 23, 2017
100% Dawson City: Frozen Time (2017) Working in documentary mode, Morrison occasionally reaches for cinematic poetry with Frozen Time, but the results are as dry as his ostensibly more lyrical work. - Reverse Shot EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 9, 2017
43% Song to Song (2017) The greatest artistic provocation of all is that of surprising, strange, and innovative art that dares the ridiculous in the pursuit of beauty. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 17, 2017
98% The Last Laugh (2017) Ultimately, what I came away with from The Last Laugh is that Holocaust humor, or any humor centered on mass death and suffering, is rarely successful. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 3, 2017
93% The Son of Joseph (Le fils de Joseph) (2017) There's a lightness to Green's touch, and a gentle beauty to many of his images, that redeems its flaws and even courts the sublime. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 17, 2017
91% Land of Mine (Under Sandet) (2017) Yet such lack of character development wouldn't be so significant if it didn't converge with the sidestepping of larger issues. - Film Comment Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2017
92% I, Daniel Blake (2017) Once I, Daniel Blake got underway I found it difficult to pretend that I didn't know exactly where it was headed, even as I choked back tears. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2016
63% Videofilia (and Other Viral Syndromes) (Videofilia: y otros síndromes virales) (2016) Enjoy Videofilia however you can. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 2, 2016
78% The Eyes of My Mother (2016) Put aside the photography and Eyes of My Mother is little more than the caboose on the torture-porn train, with Psycho-esque Freudian pretensions. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 2, 2016
85% Hacksaw Ridge (2016) Something, anything should've broken through as cinematic agitation in 2016, but Ridge is about as tepid as deafening, blood-soaked movies come. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 4, 2016
92% Into the Inferno (2016) Herzog continues to make great films, especially the kind of informative yet mysterious documentaries with which his name is synonymous. - Brooklyn Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 24, 2016
100% As I Open My Eyes (À peine j'ouvre les yeux) (2016) The film's poignant music (composed by Khyam Allami) embodies this dualism with sounds and styles simultaneously traditional and modern, joyful and outraged, and hypnotic and sobering. - Film Comment Magazine EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 26, 2016
33% Miracle at St. Anna (2008) There's barely anything in Miracle that comes across as genuine. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2016
78% Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008) The film's joyless, going-through-the-motions mood cannot be ignored. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2016
89% Blade Runner (1982) Even when over the top, Scott's uncompromisingly disorienting film is a singularly hallucinatory experience and nothing short of exhilarating. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2015
90% Hunger (2008) McQueen thus succeeds in manufacturing a palpable intensity (some of it very difficult to watch), but retreats into individual subjectivity when it might do better to open out into the larger political arena. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2015
75% La Mujer sin Cabeza (The Headless Woman) (2008) An unsettling sense of guilt and dread runs through this elliptical film that proves Martel has much improved from The Holy Girl. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2015
91% 24 City (Er shi si cheng ji) (2008) Jia Zhangke seems to be entering a new phase of his fascinating career with 24 City, a documentary/fiction hybrid that reworks the director's signature techniques and strategies to stunning and self-critical effect. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2015
76% Let it Rain (Parlez-moi de la pluie) (2010) Let It Rain may be harmlessly pleasant, but it's harmlessly pleasant to the point of insipidness. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2015
85% Lorna's Silence (2008) Lorna's Silence is not only a beautiful film, but also one that moves the filmmakers' art forward a small step or two -- a tectonic shift for these art cinema old faithfuls. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 2, 2015
92% Sicko (2007) While Moore's sins aren't nearly as terrible or significant as those of the political system to which he stands opposed, his unabashed tendency to talk down to his audience is symptomatic of our culture of mediocrity. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 29, 2015
96% Waltz with Bashir (2008) The movie's aesthetic and narrative confusion are as much products of a muddled, if just barely successful, approach as it is of Folman's search among the ruins of his memory. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 7, 2015
92% Children of Men (2006) Cuarón is implementing a verisimilitude that both matches the film's edge-of-your-seat escalations and demonstrates a new understanding of blockbuster realism. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 1, 2015
77% Cloverfield (2008) Cloverfield should be best appreciated for throwing down the gauntlet for a new cinematic representation of mass destruction and, thus, the way we see ourselves seeing our worst fears. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 30, 2014
77% I'm Not There (2007) Since much of I'm Not There falls short in the lived moment, its individual threads don't lead back to Haynes's larger concerns. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 30, 2014
89% Inglourious Basterds (2009) How welcome, then, that Basterds, while no masterpiece, manages to get at something more than its creator's too often frivolously exercised visual intelligence and esoteric preoccupations. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 23, 2014
94% The Dark Knight (2008) Once firmly established, the bludgeoning pace of one Joker rampage after another pounds the film's carefully detailed collaboration into mush. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 20, 2014
92% Sugar (2008) The cinematic equivalent of an investigative Sports Illustrated two-parter. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted May 9, 2014
100% The Big Risk (Classe tous risques) (1960) What we're left with 45 years after Classe's awkwardly timed entrance into French film history are some superbly assured performances and well-drawn characters. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 2, 2014
91% Operation Filmmaker (2008) What the film really spotlights is a cultural clash violently, awkwardly resisting the tenuous unifying powers of art. The Westerners -- including Davenport -- see in Muthana the protagonist. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 17, 2014
32% The Black Dahlia (2006) The Black Dahlia doesn't solve the eternal De Palma dilemma, but it sure does fascinate. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 17, 2014
79% Why We Fight (2006) Left-leaning audiences will readily agree with it, but the lack of ideas on how to take on such an enormous enterprise as the military-industrial complex limits the film's intrusion into reality. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 17, 2013
91% Memories of Underdevelopment (Memorias del subdesarrollo) (1973) The eventual worldwide recognition of Underdevelopment as one of Cuba's finest films speaks as much for the frozen moment it captures as for its unimpeachable quality. - L.A. Weekly EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 21, 2010
42% The Expendables (2010) Rather than reviving the actors' 80s heyday, The Expendables only demonstrates how much action films have changed in recent years. - Salon.com EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2010
93% No Country for Old Men (2007) Irony in the background, what's so impressive about the Coens with this film is how much of their sensibility still remains at the fore, and how many hues of their cinematic palette have become enriched and invigorated because of it. - Reverse Shot EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 6, 2010
84% Rocket Science (2007) When a film to fails at accurately representing something inextricable from our intimate knowledge of the world it's not just disappointing, but often insulting. - Reverse Shot EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 6, 2010
43% The Limits of Control (2009) Its meanings are indefensibly shallow and its atmosphere depressingly thin. - Stop Smiling EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 28, 2009