James Croot

James Croot
James Croot's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Stuff.co.nz, Flicks.co.nz

Movie Reviews Only

Rating T-Meter Title | Year Review
2.5/5 35% Glass (2019) I've always been a Glass half-full fan of Shyamalan, but this drab disappointment has shattered my faith.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Jan 18, 2019
3/5 50% Storm Boy (2019) 2019 Storm Boy's best moments come in revisiting the central tale of a boy and his pelicans, with Tidelands' Finn Little delivering an impressive performance.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Jan 16, 2019
3/5 83% Hurricane (2018) Delivering plenty of tears and triumph before tea time (albeit with a nasty true-life sting in its final text summary), Hurricane could just have benefited from a slightly tighter focus.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
100% How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) Rivalled only by the Weta-infused Apes as the best trilogy of the current decade, How to Train Your Dragon completes its triptych with a fitting final flourish.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2019
3/5 69% The Happy Prince (2018) It's an interesting, more sober counterpoint to 1997's Stephen Fry starring Wilde, but Happy Prince feels like more of a slog than it should be.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 27, 2018
3.5/5 60% Sink or Swim (Le grand bain) (2018) Not quite The Full Monty, but Sink or Swim is no half-baked premise either.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 27, 2018
3.5/5 78% Mary Poppins Returns (2018) Mary Poppins Returns is that rare, often-thought-now-extinct beast - an intergenerational crowdpleaser seemingly specifically designed for grandparents to take their young charges to during the seemingly endless summer school holidays.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 27, 2018
62% Bird Box (2018) After such an amazing, awe-inspiring start, it's disappointing this thriller couldn't have thought a little more outside the box.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 27, 2018
4/5 88% Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) Director Rich Moore's return to the gaming world he so brilliantly created in 2012's Wreck it Ralph is a sometimes uneven, but ultimately endearing and satisfying sequel.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2018
4.5/5 92% Bumblebee (2018) [Christina Hodson's script] finds the right balance between propelling the story forward and developing character, while John Cena (Blockers) does well as the human villain of the piece.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 18, 2018
4.5/5 98% Can You Ever Forgive Me? (2018) However, the film belong to both Grant and McCarthy. His performance and character remind one of his seminal 1987 black comedy Withnail and I.... while she is a revelation.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 11, 2018
2/5 40% Second Act (2018) As for J-Lo herself, she tries gamely, but saddled with one of the worst scripts of the year, this definitely feels closer to her work in Maid in Manhattan than Out of Sight.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 6, 2018
2.5/5 No Score Yet Being Rose (2019) Clearly designed as a vehicle for the now 68-year-old former Moonlighting and The Last Picture Show star, Rose's mature drama can't overcome a pile-up of plot contrivances and cliched action.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2018
4.5/5 72% The Children Act (2018) However, this is a riposte for anyone who thinks that all the great contemporary British drama can only be found on television.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2018
4/5 81% Fahrenheit 11/9 (2018) This is timely and terrifying documentary film-making.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2018
3.5/5 80% The Song Keepers (2017) A spirit-lifting treat.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
3/5 100% Working Class Boy (2018) Instead, this feels like a feature-length edition of Who Do You Think You Are? as Barnes revisits his childhood homes and recounts episodes in his life when he witnessed domestic violence, extreme poverty and severe alcoholism.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
3.5/5 34% The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (2018) Ashleigh Powell's adaptation feels like Alice in Wonderland-meets-The-Chronicles-of-Narnia (with a hint of Labyrinth) as a grieving young woman finds empowerment (and herself) in battling fantastic forces.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
4.5/5 90% Lean on Pete (2018) Haigh also does a superb job of creating a sense of space and place, eschewing the usual US cultural landmarks and suburban landscapes for zones of semi-industrial living and dust-hewn backdrops.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
3/5 58% The Grinch (2018) The animation is top-notch and unlikely to cause half as many nightmares as Carrey and company's grotesque prosthetics.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2018
4/5 99% Shoplifters (Manbiki kazoku) (2018) As with Kore-eda's previous efforts, which also include Like Father, Like Son and After the Storm, Shoplifters is a sumptuous-looking, languidly paced, lovingly created gentle drama that deceptively packs a powerful narrative punch.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2018
4.5/5 96% Three Identical Strangers (2018) Stunning viewing, this is documentary film-making at its finest.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2018
3/5 100% Pick of the Litter (2018) It's these captured observations and the occasional unguarded and unfiltered moment that lift Pick of the Litter to a more pedigree status.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2018
92% The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018) Those Coen brothers have once again struck storytelling gold by heading to the outdoors.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 16, 2018
4.5/5 92% The Old Man & the Gun (2018) Thank goodness, then, that, if this is indeed to be his last hurrah, The Old Man and the Gun is a near-perfect send-off.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 13, 2018
3.5/5 No Score Yet Vermilion (2018) While not everything works - an Irish accent occasionally goes awry, some dialogue delivery feels a little off - Vermilion is an absorbing drama illuminated by talent that needs and deserves more moments in the spotlight like this.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 8, 2018
5/5 97% They Shall Not Grow Old (2018) Aimed at creating a soldiers' eye-view of the four-year conflict, the result is a stunning piece of cinema.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 7, 2018
4.5/5 93% Journey's End (2018) A terrific companion piece (and Armistice Day weekend double bill) to Peter Jackson's similarly set documentary They Shall Not Grow Old.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Nov 5, 2018
3/5 No Score Yet Born Racer (2018) So while Born Racer is an excellent primer into the world of IndyCars, unlike say Asif Kapadia's Senna, it falls short of being an essential portrait of a sporting legend.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Oct 25, 2018
4/5 88% American Animals (2018) Having already blurred the lines between drama and documentary with his Bafta-winning 2012 debut The Imposter, Bart Layton now mashes them together to audacious effect.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Oct 23, 2018
3.5/5 79% Halloween (2018) ho knew that the minds behind half-baked comedies such as Your Highness and The Sitter would produce one of the best horrors of the year?‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Oct 19, 2018
3/5 76% Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist (2018) Where the film does comes alive though is in the behind-the-scenes footage of her critquing her own collection, or how it is being portrayed.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2018
4/5 No Score Yet She Shears (2018) Throw in some gorgeous rural vistas, ornery ovines and inspirational quotes like "you can't rise to low expectations" and "you can't rest on your laurels, or the sheep will destroy you" and the result is an absorbing watch.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Oct 9, 2018
2/5 No Score Yet Together (2018) A tinkly piano soundtrack doesn't help the manipulative mood, nor does the poorly handled revelations about the couple's early life together.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Oct 3, 2018
4/5 91% Teen Titans Go! To the Movies (2018) For those a little worn down by the one-two gloom fest of Justice League and Avengers: Infinity War, this is just the borax-poking tonic to make you feel good about caped crusaders again.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Oct 1, 2018
4/5 93% Beast (2018) Writer-director Michael Pearce's debut feature is a chilling little thriller reminiscent of recent low-key contemporary horrors like Raw, Get Out and the little-seen In Fear.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 26, 2018
4.5/5 66% The House with a Clock in Its Walls (2018) Who knew that the director who once gave the world Hostel Part II could conjure up on the most magical family fantasies in years?‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 21, 2018
4/5 92% Mirai (2018) Even better, it's a rare animated flick you can have family discussions about afterwards, rather just reminisce together about the best gags.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 18, 2018
3.5/5 83% Ladies in Black (2018) These ladies might be dressed in black during their working hours, but their stories and personas are colourfully entertaining.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 17, 2018
4.5/5 85% A Simple Favor (2018) Based on Darcey Bell's 2017 debut novel, the plot boasts more impressive twists then the martinis so beloved by Emily.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 13, 2018
3/5 72% Christopher Robin (2018) Following on from his 2004 look at what inspired J.M. Barrie to write Peter Pan (Finding Neverland), German director Marc Forster does a terrific job of evoking a sense of space and place here.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 13, 2018
4/5 89% Wayne (2018) You don't have to be a motorsport fan to richly enjoy Kiwi producing duo Matthew Metcalfe and Fraser Brown's (McLaren, the upcoming Scott Dixon doco Born Racer) latest work, but it will certainly help.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 10, 2018
4/5 92% Searching (2018) An audacious tale that is well worth searching out.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 10, 2018
4/5 99% McQueen (2018) That quibble aside, McQueen is still an excellent, enlightening look at "the hooligan of English fashion".‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 4, 2018
4/5 100% McKellen: Playing the Part (2017) Essentially based around a single interview, Playing the Part allows McKellen's avuncular personality, warmth and wicked humour to shine.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Sep 4, 2018
3/5 94% Spitfire (2018) A tale that's fascinating enough without those extra, actually enervating embellishments.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Aug 29, 2018
3.5/5 24% Luis and The Aliens (2018) While the characters and situations may be a little too predictable and farcical for sustained enjoyable supervised viewing, there's an overall feeling of fun that emanates from the just-right running time.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Aug 29, 2018
4/5 86% The Miseducation of Cameron Post (2018) Building towards one of the most euphoric yet melancholic final scenes you'll see this year, this is one Miseducation well worth learning more about.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2018
4.5/5 91% Crazy Rich Asians (2018) This two-hour feel good immersion will have you contemplating the next available flights, as well as who you can share this marvellous movie experience with next.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Aug 24, 2018
2/5 17% The Darkest Minds (2018) Throw in a supporting cast of TV escapees from the likes of Prison Break and CSI, and Darkest Minds feels like a wannabe movie franchise that already knew it was on borrowed time.‐ Stuff.co.nz
Read More | Posted Aug 21, 2018