Troy Patterson

Troy Patterson
Tomatometer-approved critic
Biography:
Slate movie critic.

Movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year
4/4 94% Juno (2007) As directed by Jason Reitman, the movie builds from sitcom setups to wistful payoffs. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
4/4 94% The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007) Its flow of memory and imagination transforms the hero's nightmare into a dream, where a glance at the radiance of sunlight in a curtain is an elemental vision of what it means to be alive. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3/4 91% There Will Be Blood (2007) Though Day-Lewis seethes juicily, under the weight of all that allegory, Plainview steadily grows more vicious and less fascinating, wasting away to just a cackle and an empty leer. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3.5/4 32% Youth Without Youth (2007) The first half of Youth has the tension of a crack thriller. But director Francis Ford Coppola has rigged things so that the suspense story melts into a New Age puddle. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3/4 75% Avenue Montaigne (2006) Because the movie -- bright as a postcard and flooded with music ranging from richest Beethoven to bittersweet ballads -- is enchanting at its core, the creaky plot doesn't matter that much. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3.5/4 90% Starter for 10 (2006) Adhering to every convention of the coming-of-age film in a sneakily alluring way and flirting with cliche without slobbering all over it, this sweet little date-night flick is built to charm everyone's inner 18-year-old. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
2.5/4 34% Reno 911!: Miami (2007) Maddeningly hit-or-miss, Reno 911! plays as if the filmmakers were aiming simply to outclass Police Academy 5. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
1/4 66% Black Snake Moan (2007) Writer/director Craig Brewer has whipped up a controversy magnet that will make some fans of his first film, Hustle & Flow, retract anything they said in defense of its depiction of women. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
4/4 79% Crazy Love (2007) Dan Klores shapes their tale into a documentary as arresting as a Weegee crime-scene photo. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3.5/4 71% Black Sheep (2006) A genre mash-up... director Jonathan King's first feature doubles as a fable about two grown brothers and triples as a fresh national myth for his native New Zealand. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3.5/4 84% Paprika (2006) Though Kon sometimes hits on startling visions ripped straight from your head last night, he's ultimately more interested in film theory than the Freudian sort, evoking dreams in a way that's most faithful to dream sequences. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3/4 90% Knocked Up (2007) Knocked Up must be the funniest Hollywood romantic comedy since Apatow's 40-Year-Old Virgin. Granted, there are higher compliments, but the movie undeniably offers audiences many abdomen-impairing moments they'll talk (and talk and talk) about. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3.5/4 90% A Serious Man (2009) The movie develops into a pretty good rabbi joke about the meaninglessness of the universe. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
2.5/4 40% Brief Interviews with Hideous Men (2009) The urgency of the tales gets lost along the way, weighed down by staginess and an inconsistent tone, although Krasinski's ambition suggests a noble failure. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
2.5/4 94% An Education (2009) Nick Hornby wrote the screenplay by inflating a fragment of Lynn Barber's memoir, failing to disguise the thinness of the material. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3/4 85% Whip It (2009) Though Whip It celebrates risk-taking ladies, its plot turns gently from one formulaic moment to the next. The only surprise is just how much silliness Barrymore is willing to commit. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
4/4 40% Middle Men (2010) If you're not turned off by a standard-issue subplot about the Valley of temptation, then click ENTER to watch some hot and witty business thriller action. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
2.5/4 80% The Disappearance of Alice Creed (2010) After meticulously rigging a combination of claustrophobic suspense drama and icy procedural, director J Blakeson allows his movie to fall apart. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
2.5/4 42% The Extra Man (2010) Extra Man's superfluous oddities threaten to obscure its peculiar charms. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
3/4 69% Life During Wartime (2010) Life During Wartime presents scenes that feel as authentic as bad dreams, and sometimes that's happiness enough. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2019
71% The College Admissions Scandal (2019) The crimes here seem heinous because they subvert meritocracy, and this Lifetime movie-with its strokes of low-brow expressionism, inadvertently funny production values, clever lead performances-converts the news story into an exhilarating nightmare. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2019
45% Camp Rock (2008) A workaday professionalism that's never too slick to alienate anyone. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 11, 2019
C- No Score Yet The Queens of Comedy (2000) Is this in the tradition of the great Moms Mabley? Sure. Does it rise to the sophistication of Married ... With Children? Rarely. - Entertainment Weekly EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 8, 2019
98% Homecoming: A Film by Beyoncé (2019) Homecoming is in a class of its own as a total synthesis of the pop arts. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 19, 2019
79% Brexit (2019) Brexit is nicely ambiguous as to whether Cummings is a misguided genius or simply a talented opportunist, and Cumberbatch is excellent at conveying the lonely monomania of a man stubbornly devoted to principles that only he recognizes. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 18, 2019
100% A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (1973) Witnessing the principle in action last night inspired some ready-made nostalgia and some ritualized pleasure. It affirmed the conviction that Charlie Brown is not just a good man, but a beautiful loser. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 9, 2018
83% My Dinner with Hervé (2018) My Dinner with Hervé cannot make a straight-faced claim that Villechaize was an important actor or significant cultural figure, so its own significance depends on the star's charisma, which lends the proceedings a simple poignance. - New Yorker EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 23, 2018
96% Persepolis (2007) Adapting her memoir into a starkly beautiful animated feature, comics artist Marjane Satrapi braids personal history and national tragedy. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
65% Be Kind Rewind (2008) Gondry connects the guys' toil and glee with a kind of old-time neighborhood hominess that's dying away and a jazzed creative joy that never will. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
39% The Killing of John Lennon (2006) What Killing lacks in celebrity sparkle, it compensates for in raw ambition and rude chills. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
29% How to Rob a Bank (2007) Variously reminiscent of a Harold Pinter play, a Tarantino wannabe, and a deranged cell-phone commercial, the legitimately suspenseful How to Rob a Bank has the courage to embrace the ridiculous. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
76% Paranoid Park (2007) Glum yet gorgeous, Paranoid Park ties together Alex's bleak confusion with his more mundane existential teen traumas. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
68% Snow Angels (2007) Tragedy is juxtaposed, clumsily, with stories from the so-called life of a high school student, as if the plot had sprained something in the course of its transition from Stewart O'Nan's novel to the screen. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
79% The Bank Job (2008) Some great heist films concentrate on the quiet craftsmanship of the big score; and some very good ones, like The Bank Job - wild and willfully shaggy - prefer to revel in the sport of thievery. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
93% Milk (2008) Gus Van Sant's portrait of San Francisco politician Harvey Milk clunks along as the squarest movie he's ever made, a result of the director investing more emotion in the martyred idol than in the bleeding man. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
32% Boarding Gate (2008) Combining elements of a D-grade erotic thriller and a deconstructed international thriller, Boarding Gate proves duly snazzy and sleazy - kinda skanky in a highfalutin' way. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
80% It Might Get Loud (2009) David Guggenheim's delightfully unsnobby symposium of a documentary convenes three masters who share one love: electric guitar. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
68% Shutter Island (2010) Yes, [it's] built on pulp landfill, but purposefully so, with Scorsese using the twist ending to riff on the very power of elaborate fantasy. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
69% The Runaways (2010) While the offstage passion between Jett and Currie gives the film its emotional drive, their in-concert erotic aggression is an occasion for elegantly examining the line between self-expression and self-exploitation. - Spin EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
87% Grey Gardens (2009) If there is a meaning to this adaptation, it lies in the filmmaker's gentle suggestion of the Beales' martyrdom-though for what cause the ladies suffered remains unclear. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 24, 2018
74% Too Big to Fail (2011) The movie is a tense vignette with a nonending. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 25, 2018
49% Phil Spector (2013) I'm wondering if it is possible to do something analogous to a citizen's arrest and file a credit dispute on behalf of the viewing public. Nobody produced this film. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted May 22, 2013
63% Philip Roth: Unmasked (2013) That neither Krauss nor anyone has anything remotely unflattering to say about the subject points to the fundamental dishonesty of the work, which extends from its excessive reverence. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 1, 2013
No Score Yet It gets beneath the skin by examining the state of isolation at the bottom of the world. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2013
No Score Yet Bollywood Hero (2009) It must be said that Bollywood Hero is an entirely novel kind of slog. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 18, 2013
89% Crossfire Hurricane (2012) It was my pleasure, as an intermediate-level Stones buff, to see that director Brett Morgen has put together something reeking of astringent danger. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 16, 2012
67% Method to the Madness of Jerry Lewis (2012) The documentary's camera captures the lensmen from an angle designed to make a tiny swarm of shutterbugs appear like a teeming plague, and you quickly begin to distrust the film's perspective in the most literal sense. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 13, 2012
77% Recount (2008) It grovels for the approval of political junkies while flaunting the shallowest interest in politics, and everything flows from there in the most silly fashion. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted May 27, 2008
97% When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts (2006) When the Levees Broke is a monument of oral history. Without fanfare, Lee orchestrates a multivoiced blues for the common man. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 22, 2006
79% Brick (2006) Like the best noirs, Brick is a triumph of attitude, and there's no arguing that its brand of deadpan cool is precisely unique. - Slate EDIT
Read More | Posted May 12, 2006