Sheila Johnston

Sheila Johnston
Sheila Johnston's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): London Evening Standard Independent (UK) Daily Telegraph (UK) Time Out The Arts Desk

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
56% The Cutting Edge (1992) The only thing that would have made this palatable in a mildly camp sort of way would have been the skating sequences. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 19, 2019
11% Street Fighter (1994) As for Jean-Claude, it's a tough stretch for him to play a figurine from an arcade game but, why, he almost manages to be convincing. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 24, 2019
69% Don Juan DeMarco (1994) The film has its slow patches, and its fragile illusion probably doesn't stand up to close scrutiny. But, mostly, it dances on a very fine knife's edge between charm and absurdity, an irresistible paean to the art of kiss-kiss. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 24, 2019
82% Fun (1994) The main reason to see it is the exceptional performances from the two young leads, Alicia Witt as the crazed, hyperactive, almost infantile Bonnie and Renee Humphrey as her brooding, introverted friend. Both are names to watch. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2019
22% Silent Fall (1994) As a thriller, it's a dead loss, mainly due to a dearth of suspects - this film must have had the lowest extras budget of last year. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2019
59% In the Mouth of Madness (1995) This is one of those self- referential horror movies that gets buried alive in an avalanche of clever special effects and an incredible imploding plot. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2019
No Score Yet Neak sre (People of the Rice Paddies) (1994) It's occasionally fascinating, all the same, as a window on a very different world. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2019
42% Bad Boys (1995) You may rest assured that whenever a glass object hoves into view, it will be shattered in slo-mo by the end of the scene. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 29, 2019
28% Nightwatch (1998) A nifty little psycho-thriller from Denmark. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2018
93% The Wild Bunch (1969) Remains hugely impressive, both for its technical brilliance and the emotional ferocity of its themes: old age, friendship, betrayal and the struggle to retain some kind of cock-eyed code of honour in an increasingly cynical world. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2018
43% Species (1995) It would be comforting to think that the genus Cinema Americana were guided by the principal of natural selection, but cloning and reversion seem, rather, to be the norm. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 3, 2018
100% The Tale of the Fox (Le Roman de Renard) (1930) The passing years have robbed it of none of its capacity to enchant and amuse. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 23, 2018
33% In the Cut (2003) Ryan gives a career redefining performance. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
42% The Human Stain (2003) It is a decent, intelligent film that yet somehow fails to excite. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
13% Uptown Girls (2003) Saucereyed and hedgehog-haired, Brittany Murphy thinks, wrongly, that she is adorably kooky as the party girl. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
23% Torque (2004) Shot like a feature-length commercial, Torque is as bright and shiny and inconsequential as a chrome hubcap. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
71% Suzie Gold (2003) North London-Jewish stories can provide a rich mine of humour, but Suzie Gold is dross. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
64% Stage Beauty (2004) Stage Beauty... has a lot going for it. Richard Eyre's spritely direction helps hide the holes in the plot, creating a vivid, raucous, underworld London of transvestites, whores and pickpockets, some played by a terrific supporting cast. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
88% The Woodsman (2004) Often cast in high-energy, borderline manic roles, Bacon creates here a sad, lank-haired, introverted character who doesn't fish for sympathy and, for that very reason, and against all odds, ends up winning it. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
90% My Summer of Love (2004) With its fast editing and handheld camerawork, the film zips along lightly. Like a classic O Henry short story, it has a sting in the tail. But it's above all about conjuring a sense of atmosphere and place. - London Evening Standard EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 10, 2018
95% Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography (1993) It's an excellent introduction to the neglected magic of the cameraman, bolstered by a revolving supporting feature chosen from the examples discussed in the film. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
No Score Yet Beyond Bedlam (1994) Jean doesn't altogether disappoint with this second offering -- not as a director. Beyond Bedlam is handsomely mounted, with a flair for framing, camera movement and expressionist lighting. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
100% And the Band Played On (1993) I enjoyed seeing A-list actors in the sort of small supporting role they would never otherwise accept. And they got the film made. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
96% Four Weddings and a Funeral (1994) It's rare to see in a British film: a dramatic point that doesn't hinge on dialogue. Four Weddings and a Funeral is a lightweight affair, but this is one of several fine touches that make it, on the whole, a cause for celebration rather than for mourning. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
97% Shadowlands (1993) It's not hard to see what drew Richard Attenborough to the story. It is a character-driven piece with two potent leading roles, and he is a former actor known for teasing outstanding performances from his cast. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
86% Manufacturing Consent - Noam Chomsky and the Media (1993) It's as manipulative as the corporate media it places under fire. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
71% Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story (1993) Jason Scott Lee does his namesake proud in the title role, but the film tries to court too many different audiences, with lethal results. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
87% Homeward Bound - The Incredible Journey (1993) It has a dumb, trashy humour that I have to confess secretly to enjoying. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
90% The Cement Garden (1992) The four young actors, by whom it stands or falls, deliver impressively, in particular Robertson and Gainsbourg. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
31% Dangerous Game (1993) Abel Ferrara has never been exactly a mainstream film-maker, but with Dangerous Game he wanders too deep into the margins, even for die-hard Ferrara addicts. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
9% Intersection (1994) Mark Rydell directs, often with a leaden hand, but the film is intriguingly structured and has the kind of bittersweet, double-edged ending too rare in mainstream Hollywood these days. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
67% In Custody (1993) It feels like a slender short story spun out close to breaking point. An honourable debut, though. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
No Score Yet Gadael Lenin (Leaving Lenin) (1993) The director, Endaf Emlyn, previously made One Full Moon, and brings the same visual brio to this small-scale piece. It's benign, hard to dislike. But a little predictable. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
No Score Yet London (1994) The British Tourist Authority wouldn't like London much, but it's the most ambitious, provocative and engaging new British film to surface in a long while. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
94% Widows' Peak (1994) Widows' Peak is chiefly a comedy, and the main weakness is the choice of director -- John Irvin -- who is best known for action movies and, on this evidence, should stick with them. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
31% Tom & Viv (1994) An amount of telescoping is inevitable in a story which spans 32 years, but you are left with the feeling that the film has cunningly leapfrogged over key events you would have liked to see. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
68% Little Buddha (1994) It is refreshing to find a heavy-hitting European auteur telling his story with such directness, and delightful to see a serious, artistically exacting film for children, even if you suspect it will soar over that audience. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
No Score Yet Secret Friends (1992) This is a tough ride for a very small return: the cramped and narcissistic anguish of a middle-aged male as seen in Potter passim. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
15% Encino Man (1992) The film, school of Bob and Ted and Wayne and Garth, but inferior in all regards, illustrates the Theory of Reverse Evolution. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
No Score Yet My Father Is Coming (1991) Alas, this is a scrappy little film, ill-scripted, photographed and, in particular, directed, and the weird, but very likeable cast is the only reason to see it. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
40% Just Like A Woman (1993) The film courts your sympathy for a practice more common than you'd expect, but by the same token it's very bland, skirting round the reasons why Pasdar likes putting on the glitz, and round the subject's darker fringes. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
70% Swoon (1991) An impressive debut feature from the young, independent American film-maker Tom Kalin. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2017
85% The Last Days of Chez Nous (1991) It's a low-key affair, whose refusal to spell out its points too loudly is commendable but also a little unsatisfying -- too many details never quite come into focus. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2017
77% Bad Lieutenant (1992) This is bull of a very high order. - Independent (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2017
No Score Yet The Pure One (Pakeezah) (1971) A byzantine story (of star-crossed lovers) that proceeds fitfully through the fabulous logic of dreams; luscious colour-scope photography, and a febrile camera craning and tracking restlessly through fairytale locations and sets. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 20, 2017
95% The Queen of Spades (1949) The Queen of Spades is a treasured relic of a time when the British cinema momentarily abandoned its good manners and revelled gloriously in visual and emotional excess. - The Arts Desk EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 18, 2016
5/5 98% Casablanca (1942) There are some of the very finest character actors that Warner Brothers could muster and a rich, detailed screenplay studded with an indecent number of sparklingly quotable lines. It is a movie to play again, and again. - Daily Telegraph (UK) EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 20, 2014
93% About a Boy (2002) Grant, seeming to get better the further he's allowed to extend his range, delivers a terrific central performance, as acerbic but more complex than his sexy snake in Bridget Jones. - Screen International EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 10, 2014
2/4 38% Immortals (2011) With its clashing Titans, gorgeous costumes and toned bodies, Immortals has something for all, though its main appeal may be to those who enjoy slo-mo exploding heads in 3D. - Boston Phoenix EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 8, 2011
4/4 81% The Skin I Live In (2011) It's a pleasure to see the director back with his male muse, the star of his radical early films, for the first time in more than 20 years. - Boston Phoenix EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2011