Combustible Celluloid

Combustible Celluloid is not a Tomatometer-approved publication. Reviews from this publication only count toward the Tomatometer when written by the following Tomatometer-approved critic(s): Jeffrey M. Anderson, Rob Blackwelder
Rating Title/Year Author
4/4 Waves (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson A masterly effort, more fully-realized, emotionally mature, and cinematically inventive than just about anything else out there. EDIT
Posted Nov 22, 2019
3.5/4 A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Heller makes 'A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood' into a movie-movie, designed to give you the feels... but this is fine, given that this is what the movie is actually about. EDIT
Posted Nov 22, 2019
3.5/4 Clue (1985) Jeffrey M. Anderson If you're open to a weirdly atmospheric comedy that dashes from deadpan to manic and back again, it's a delight. EDIT
Posted Nov 17, 2019
3.5/4 Honey Boy (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Director Har'el gives all this a tender touch, with sequences verging on the dreamlike... 'Honey Boy' is a great act of empathy, and a catharsis. EDIT
Posted Nov 15, 2019
4/4 Kamera o tomeru na! (2017) Jeffrey M. Anderson As eye-poppingly fresh and startling as Sam Raimi's Evil Dead films were in the 1980s. EDIT
Posted Nov 8, 2019
3.5/4 The Lighthouse (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson The Lighthouse is as downright unsettling, as totally disturbing, as any black-and-white nightmare since David Lynch's Eraserhead. EDIT
Posted Nov 1, 2019
3.5/4 Harriet (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson For her superb new "Harriet," Kasi Lemmons has daringly taken a positive approach, inviting viewers into her narrative, rather than talking down to them. EDIT
Posted Oct 29, 2019
3.5/4 The Current War (2017) Jeffrey M. Anderson To my eyes, "The Current War: Director's Cut" is a terrific film, vibrant and constantly crackling, like electricity. EDIT
Posted Oct 29, 2019
3.5/4 Jojo Rabbit (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson It works beautifully, each moment bursting with playfulness (and impeccable timing), and yet never losing sight of kindness. EDIT
Posted Oct 25, 2019
3.5/4 Dolor y gloria (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson An intensely personal work, a painful, yet somehow serene exposing of Almodóvar's innermost thoughts and fears. EDIT
Posted Oct 11, 2019
3.5/4 First Love (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson It features an insane pulp fiction-type plot, with many characters and situations, but it's all so kinetic and explosive that it's fun to just buckle up and go along for the ride. EDIT
Posted Oct 11, 2019
2.5/4 Judy (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Avoiding the dull, broad scope of something like Bohemian Rhapsody, but also missing a chance at something delicate and lovely like Stan & Ollie, the biopic Judy lands squarely in the middle. EDIT
Posted Sep 27, 2019
3/4 Zeroville (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson I can't even figure out how to rate it other than to say that I think it's probably not a very good movie, but that I kind of love it. EDIT
Posted Sep 20, 2019
3.5/4 Empathy, Inc. (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson 'Empathy, Inc.' advertises its low-rent look right from the start, with its wonderful throwback black-and-white cinematography. EDIT
Posted Sep 13, 2019
4/4 Flavor of Green Tea Over Rice (1952) Jeffrey M. Anderson Comes at a wonderful middle period [in Ozu's career], between Late Spring and Tokyo Story, as more questions were being asked and themes became more appealingly layered. EDIT
Posted Sep 6, 2019
4/4 And Life Goes On... (1992) Jeffrey M. Anderson Yet another masterpiece and perhaps the first film on which the filmmaker really began playing around with space and reality. EDIT
Posted Sep 6, 2019
4/4 Through the Olive Trees (1994) Jeffrey M. Anderson Patient and observant, with a brilliant awareness of various layers of creation and creativity, it's a great film. EDIT
Posted Sep 6, 2019
3.5/4 Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Long overdue, and most welcome. EDIT
Posted Sep 6, 2019
3.5/4 Tigers Are Not Afraid (2017) Jeffrey M. Anderson Horror films can often get close to real-world terrors, often indirectly implying a connection and letting the audience bridge the gap. Issa López's extraordinary Tigers Are Not Afraid gets a little closer than that. EDIT
Posted Sep 6, 2019
4/4 Day of the Outlaw (1959) Jeffrey M. Anderson André de Toth's black-and-white winter Western Day of the Outlaw is a flat-out masterpiece, filled with nuance and visual splendor. EDIT
Posted Aug 30, 2019
3.5/4 The Perfection (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson A horror-thriller with humorous elements and a playful structure. EDIT
Posted Aug 23, 2019
3.5/4 Jacob's Ladder (1990) Jeffrey M. Anderson Though [Lyne] arguably focuses more on the thriller elements than the existential ones, he still manages a seductive, nightmare-like quality. EDIT
Posted Aug 23, 2019
3/4 The Babysitter (2017) Jeffrey M. Anderson Essentially a chase movie, but zippy, sexy, darkly funny, and constantly creative, with a fluid sense of space and movement, as well as lots of blood. EDIT
Posted Aug 23, 2019
4/4 Blackmail (1929) Jeffrey M. Anderson Overall, it's an essential early Hitchcock, showing the master confidently finding his stride. EDIT
Posted Aug 23, 2019
3.5/4 Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson [An] enlightening documentary, which is highly recommended to any cinephile. EDIT
Posted Aug 23, 2019
3/4 Ready or Not (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson [A] delightfully tense, squeal-inducing chase film, based on a clever idea and a handful of tight comic performances. EDIT
Posted Aug 23, 2019
2.5/4 Gwen (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson Gwen has been described as something of a horror film (and will be heading to the great horror streaming service Shudder), but I'd call it something more along the lines of a "misery" film. EDIT
Posted Aug 16, 2019
3/4 Blinded by the Light (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Chadha's frequent winning touches convey a passion that rises above cliché, and laughs despair in the face. EDIT
Posted Aug 16, 2019
3.5/4 Luz (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson One of the stranger horror movies in recent years, more of an impression than an experience, easier to watch than to describe. EDIT
Posted Aug 16, 2019
3.5/4 Where'd You Go, Bernadette (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Whereas it lacks Linklater's usual shambling, lackadaisical, rough-at-the-edges touch, his special kind of filmmaking magic collides with a chirpy, neurotic story and meets it in the middle. EDIT
Posted Aug 16, 2019
2.5/4 The Kitchen (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson But the actual problem is that it's not that it's not funny. The actual problem is that it's not very good. EDIT
Posted Aug 9, 2019
3.5/4 Always Be My Maybe (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson A prickly, hilarious movie that puts plenty of comedy back into the tired old romantic comedy genre. EDIT
Posted Aug 7, 2019
3.5/4 Cam (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson The movie's nightmarish quest for Alice to assert and establish her true identity is the stuff of all our darknesses, but the digital design and the focus on alluring sex workers gives it an odd, unique spin. EDIT
Posted Aug 7, 2019
3.5/4 Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson Watts follows the Marvel playbook perfectly, crafting a delightfully entertaining movie that's bright, funny, exciting, and speedy, and also one that doesn't evaporate immediately. EDIT
Posted Aug 7, 2019
4/4 Nixon (1995) Jeffrey M. Anderson Stone had just come off of his blast of overcooked insanity Natural Born Killers, and he applies some of that rebellious invention to this otherwise sober undertaking. EDIT
Posted Aug 7, 2019
3.5/4 Detective (1985) Jeffrey M. Anderson Though it takes some effort, watching Godard's twisted, ricocheting batch of ideas is usually fascinating, or at least pleasantly puzzling. EDIT
Posted Aug 7, 2019
3.5/4 Pasolini (2014) Jeffrey M. Anderson Despite Ferrara's attempts to generate scandalous imagery of his own, he winds up with many sequences of touching beauty. EDIT
Posted Jul 19, 2019
3.5/4 Sword of Trust (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson It feel(s) like it comes from life, and it's as lovable as it is wacky. EDIT
Posted Jul 19, 2019
3/4 Thunder Bay (1953) Jeffrey M. Anderson Mann stages some thrilling sequences, notably a pounding storm, and while Thunder Bay is no masterpiece, it's still worth a look. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
4/4 The Last Warning (1929) Jeffrey M. Anderson A spirited, vibrant mystery with comedy and horror elements. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
3/4 Gone to Earth (1950) Jeffrey M. Anderson Its bracing imagery still makes it worth a look. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
3.5/4 First Name: Carmen (1983) Jeffrey M. Anderson One of Jean-Luc Godard's more coherent efforts of his later years. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
3.5/4 Le Doulos (1961) Jeffrey M. Anderson Le Doulos is all about style and trenchcoats and hats, and, while I tend to prefer Melville's later, color films (Le Samourai, Army of Shadows, Le Cercle Rouge, Un Flic), this one is still recommended. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
4/4 Alphaville (1965) Jeffrey M. Anderson It really does feel like Godard has transported us to some other world, even if it's all a colossal put-on. EDIT
Posted Jul 12, 2019
2.5/4 Ophelia (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson Director Claire McCarthy provides a gorgeous, lavish landscape for the story to take place. But it runs into several inevitable roadblocks. EDIT
Posted Jul 1, 2019
3/4 Crisis Hotline (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson The film sometimes even has a Lynchian feel, with moments that are just so unreal as to feel nightmarish. EDIT
Posted Jun 17, 2019
3.5/4 Double Lives (2018) Jeffrey M. Anderson The talk is definitely intelligent, but it's also... talky. And if not for the fact that Assayas always merges a talky scene into one more emotional (and physical), then Non-Fiction might have toppled into art-house oblivion. EDIT
Posted May 24, 2019
3.5/4 House of Games (1987) Jeffrey M. Anderson Regardless of whether the film still delivers its intended zing, it's still hugely satisfying to watch all the moving parts click into place. EDIT
Posted May 24, 2019
3/4 Aladdin (2019) Jeffrey M. Anderson There's no... real reason for a remake, other than the very rare chance that a remake is going to be better than the original. Like most, Aladdin isn't. But it is momentarily diverting, in a pleasant way. EDIT
Posted May 24, 2019
3/4 Dead Snow (2009) Jeffrey M. Anderson It's a movie that doesn't mind standing on the shoulders of giants, so long as it can take a chainsaw to the giant's neck. EDIT
Posted May 10, 2019