From the Front Row

From the Front Row is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Matthew Lucas
Rating Title/Year Author
3.5/4 Ahlat Agaci (2018) Matthew Lucas A nervy, jittery, restless work from a filmmaker determined to never stop probing, reflecting, and seeking answers. EDIT
Posted Nov 13, 2019
3.5/4 Dolor y gloria (2019) Matthew Lucas Almost feels like an exorcism, an autumnal reverie filled with pain and regret, of mistakes made and loves lost. And yet there's a glimmer of hope as Almodóvar wrestles with his demons through the medium he loves. EDIT
Posted Nov 8, 2019
Mark of the Vampire (1935) Matthew Lucas In its truncated state it feels more like the scraps of a much better film, a victim of the Production Code whose true form may never see the light of day. EDIT
Posted Nov 3, 2019
3/4 Hercules in the Haunted World (1961) Matthew Lucas An eerie, surreal vision of the afterlife as only Bava could have envisioned it. EDIT
Posted Oct 31, 2019
1.5/4 The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) Matthew Lucas The Secret Life of Pets skated by on an amusing premise that its sequel all but abandons in favor of a frenetically edited, scattershot story that's more likely to leave audiences with whiplash than in stitches. EDIT
Posted Oct 22, 2019
3/4 Judy (2019) Matthew Lucas The way it acknowledges Garland's status as the original gay icon then pays it off in the final moments is a thing of beauty, a move that lifts Judy up from the doldrums of the typical biopic and elevates it to something altogether sublime. EDIT
Posted Oct 20, 2019
3.5/4 The Circus (1928) Matthew Lucas A sad clown masterwork that masks its tears with a smile. EDIT
Posted Oct 16, 2019
3.5/4 The Bigamist (1953) Matthew Lucas While viewers' reactions will likely vary greatly, Lupino refuses to take sides, and the result is a film that exists in a surprising moral gray area rarely seen in 1953. EDIT
Posted Oct 9, 2019
3/4 Never Fear (1950) Matthew Lucas An often tough-minded film that has the gloss of a "human resilience" drama, but in Lupino's steady hands it reaches much deeper. EDIT
Posted Oct 9, 2019
3.5/4 Shame (1949) Matthew Lucas Yet unlike many similar films of the late 40s and 50s, which took a "there but for the grace of god go I" point of view toward societal issues, Lupino's films replaced pity with empathy, and she treated her characters with compassion rather than judgment. EDIT
Posted Oct 9, 2019
2.5/4 Joker (2019) Matthew Lucas As a gritty comic book villain origin story Joker mostly works on its own merits, but when it tries to match Scorsese's righteous fury, it feels like little more than a pale imitation. EDIT
Posted Oct 6, 2019
3.5/4 Our Hospitality (1923) Matthew Lucas With Keaton's unique charm and a beautifully rendered sense of time and place, it becomes a showcase for one of cinema's great comic filmmakers. EDIT
Posted Oct 5, 2019
3.5/4 Through the Olive Trees (1994) Matthew Lucas Warm, humane, and wryly funny, a bemused reverie on love and romance in an ever-evolving Iran. EDIT
Posted Oct 5, 2019
3.5/4 And Life Goes On... (1992) Matthew Lucas There's a kind of playfulness here that belies the seriousness of the task at hand, and yet under Kiarostami's masterful eye the film becomes a sort of wry celebration of the Iranian people's determination to keep going. EDIT
Posted Oct 5, 2019
4/4 Where Is the Friend's Home? (1987) Matthew Lucas Its final image is one of such profound beauty that it rivals the iconic freeze-frame ending of Truffaut's The 400 Blows, perfectly capturing the sublime, gossamer belief in basic human kindness inherent in childhood. EDIT
Posted Oct 5, 2019
2.5/4 Rambo: Last Blood (2019) Matthew Lucas It's a loud, tasteless, and bloody good time that never feels like it's as good as it could be, but somehow manages to be just as fun as it should be. EDIT
Posted Sep 20, 2019
3.5/4 Aladdin (1992) Matthew Lucas Williams' never-ending stream of impersonations and wacky characters are so consistently hilarious that the audience barely has time to breathe between belly laughs. EDIT
Posted Sep 17, 2019
1.5/4 The Goldfinch (2019) Matthew Lucas A remarkably shallow film, one that never has the courage to address the issues of childhood trauma it raises, instead reaching for surface level platitudes centered around a poorly conceived macguffin. EDIT
Posted Sep 15, 2019
3.5/4 Hustlers (2019) Matthew Lucas As damning a critique of American capitalism as anything mainstream cinema has given us this decade. EDIT
Posted Sep 14, 2019
3.5/4 Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949) Matthew Lucas As scathing a critique of the British upper classes as the cinema has ever given us, disguised as a light comedy with a charming exterior. EDIT
Posted Sep 13, 2019
3.5/4 Last Year at Marienbad (1961) Matthew Lucas A treatise on memory and longing, of ideas lost to the fog of time, shards of dreams scattered across a marble floor. EDIT
Posted Sep 5, 2019
4/4 Fragment of an Empire (1929) Matthew Lucas As bold and uncompromising as its director, and its central performance by Nikitin is a truly exceptional work, some of the best acting of the silent era. EDIT
Posted Sep 4, 2019
2/4 After the Wedding (2019) Matthew Lucas This thing is a slog, a ponderous, self-important "prestige" drama whose overwrought histrionics never approach anything resembling actual human emotion. EDIT
Posted Aug 30, 2019
3/4 Where'd You Go, Bernadette (2019) Matthew Lucas Even as Linklater plays it safe through occasionally on-the-nose narration, every note of this thing rings true, often as painfully honest as it is achingly funny. EDIT
Posted Aug 23, 2019
2.5/4 Lola (1982) Matthew Lucas Despite its emulation of classical Hollywood Technicolor, Lola, much like the other films in the trilogy, is often insular and cold, holding the audience at arms length. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
3/4 Die Sehnsucht der Veronika Voss (1982) Matthew Lucas Shot in dazzling black and white, where the lights sparkle in the frame like the jewels that down Vernoika's neck. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
3.5/4 The Marriage of Maria Braun (1978) Matthew Lucas It's the film's feminist edge that remains powerful, and it's easy to see why it became Fassbinder's biggest box office success. EDIT
Posted Aug 22, 2019
3.5/4 Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché (2018) Matthew Lucas A vital, deeply moving documentary that at long last acknowledges Guy-Blaché's invaluable gift to cinema, insuring that this long-forgotten pioneer will finally be given her due. EDIT
Posted Aug 20, 2019
2.5/4 The Kitchen (2019) Matthew Lucas There's just an agreeable verve to [Berloff's] direction, even if she has a tendency to paint with much too broad a brush, overstating her themes even when the action often speaks for itself. EDIT
Posted Aug 16, 2019
4/4 The Last Warning (1929) Matthew Lucas A deliriously entertaining mystery filled with eerie shadows, kooky characters, and outlandish twists that always land through Leni's sharp balance between humor and horror. EDIT
Posted Aug 14, 2019
3.5/4 The Man Who Laughs (1928) Matthew Lucas Veidt is the beating heart of The Man Who Laughs, anchoring its grotesqueries in a sense of tragedy and pathos. EDIT
Posted Aug 14, 2019
3/4 Speedy (1928) Matthew Lucas Lloyd always rejected the sentimentality of Chaplin and the droll cynicism of Keaton. Lloyd just wanted to have fun, and Speedy has it in spades. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3/4 Krampus (2015) Matthew Lucas Delves deep into Yuletide lore to deliver something wholly original, making it something of a breath of fresh air for horror aficionados. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 The Pearl Button (2015) Matthew Lucas Through Guzmán's unique lens, the history of the natives becomes a kind of ethereal reflection of the universe, irrevocably changed by colonialism and western invasion. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
4/4 Jafar Panahi's Taxi (2015) Matthew Lucas Panahi is a master craftsman who continues to make bricks without straw, turning his punishment into some of the most essential cinema of the decade. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 The Forbidden Room (2015) Matthew Lucas Evokes a forgotten aesthetic that feels as if we have unearthed a buried treasure. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
4/4 Mulholland Dr. (2001) Matthew Lucas This is David Lynch's Persona, a pyscho-sexual exploration of memory and identity that is clearly the work of an artist working at the height of his creative powers. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
2/4 He Named Me Malala (2015) Matthew Lucas It's so disappointing to see [Malala] saddled with such a perfunctory, trite, and gushing tribute that barely scratches the surface of this remarkable woman. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
4/4 Diary of a Lost Girl (1929) Matthew Lucas A masterpiece of the silent era, and a showcase for one of the silver screen's greatest stars. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 Breathe (2014) Matthew Lucas This is a painfully honest examination of young love and the sometimes predatory nature of friendship. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3/4 Scarecrows (1988) Matthew Lucas Short, fast paced, and perhaps most disquieting of all, doesn't go out of its way to explain itself and the origins of its demonic scarecrows, which make them all the more terrifying. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared (2013) Matthew Lucas An irresistible and endearing adventure that is pure escapism, a rare type of cinema magic that is as transporting as it is captivating. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 The Salt of the Earth (2014) Matthew Lucas Salgado documents human existence with remarkable sensitivity and profound insight into the mysteries of life, and so too does Wenders. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 Jauja (2014) Matthew Lucas A haunting existential work, often perplexing, always fascinating, Jauja is a dazzling experiment that never fully reveals itself, always hiding its meanings and ideas behind long takes and metaphors. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
2/4 Red Army (2014) Matthew Lucas Takes a strong subject and renders it toothless and forgettable. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3/4 Song of the Sea (2014) Matthew Lucas A breath of fresh air, as rare and as beautiful as the Selkies it depicts. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961) Matthew Lucas One of the most striking Disney films of the classic era, with its almost impressionistic pencil drawings and dazzling use of color. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 A Day in the Country (1936) Matthew Lucas It's one of Renoir's most bittersweet works, a film that, just like the country life it depicts, feels beautifully, perfectly incomplete. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3.5/4 The Duke of Burgundy (2014) Matthew Lucas Strickland is more interested in sex as power, and by taking men completely out of the equation, he delivers something almost unheard of in modern cinema. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019
3/4 The Interview (2014) Matthew Lucas These aren't just two stoner dudes who bumbled their way into a real world crisis like in the movie, these are two very smart comedians who turned a seemingly innocuous comedy into a real life act of defiance. EDIT
Posted Aug 6, 2019