Critics Consensus

Critical Consensus: "Nativity" Is Too Safe; "Turistas" Not Worth Trip

by | November 30, 2006 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a new take on the first Noel ("The Nativity Story," starring Keisha Castle-Hughes), endangered Americans in Brazil ("Turistas," starring Melissa George), and a hard partying expat ("Van Wilder: The Rise of Taj," starring Kal Penn). What do the critics have to say?

It may be based on The Greatest Story Ever Told, but critics say "The Nativity Story" is hardly the greatest movie ever made — or even a particularly good one. In case you need a refresher on the origins of the upcoming holiday that may be the occasion for you to receive a Playstation 3, "The Nativity Story" tells the tale of a teenager named Mary (Keisha Castle-Hughes) who is to give birth to the savior of mankind — all the while dealing with political persecution and lousy hotel service. Critics say the film is too safe (strange, given director Catherine Hardwicke‘s previous films about remarkable young people, "Thirteen" and "Lords of Dogtown"), adding little spark to the most inspirational (and familiar) of sagas. "The Nativity Story" currently stands at 26 percent on the Tomatometer.


Mary, don’t you weep.

"Turistas" continues a mini-trend in slasher films that began with "Hostel": arrogant Americans getting their comeuppance in foreign locales. In this case, a group of youngsters are terrorized in Brazil after they fall into the clutches of a mad organ harvester. While some critics have praised the film’s political undertones and better-than-average tension, most say "Turistas" adds little to a stale genre. At 38 percent on the Tomatometer, this tourist trap may be worth avoiding.


"Turistas": Return I won’t to old Brazil.

"Van Wilder: The Rise of Taj" was not screened for critics, which may indicate that it has the potential to sink like a stone with the scribes. (The original "Van Wilder" garnered a robust 17 percent.) Guess that Tomatometer.


They may not be toasting when the reviews come out….

Opening this week in limited release: "10 Items or Less," a laid-back romance starring Morgan Freeman and Paz Vega, is at 53 percent; "3 Needles," a globe-spanning drama about the toll of the AIDS virus, is at 33 percent; and "The Architect," a tale of two families in conflict over a public housing structure, is at 33 percent.

Notable Biblical Epics:
——————————
51% — The Passion of the Christ (2004)
80% — The Last Temptation of Christ (1988)
88% — The Gospel According to St. Matthew (1965)
96% — Ben Hur (1959)
91% — The Ten Commandments (1956)

Recent Slasher Movies:
—————————-
29% — Saw III (2006)
18% — Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006)
57% — Feast (2006)
35% — Calvaire (2006)
20% — Mad Cowgirl (2006)

Tag Cloud

IFC Kids & Family A&E Exclusive Video Premiere Dates 2017 comiccon SDCC docudrama El Rey OWN VICE Election science fiction FX Interview Oscars TBS Cartoon Network HBO Set visit Syfy Spring TV Crackle ABC Family Disney Channel Nat Geo sports GoT diversity Grammys MTV Video Games WGN Masterpiece NYCC TruTV PaleyFest TCA ABC Polls and Games CNN vampires First Look Drama TCM Freeform Pop Netflix Schedule Esquire Fox News LGBTQ BBC social media DC Comics harry potter Amazon Box Office AMC Holidays serial killer Horror sitcom Rom-Com Comedy adventure Emmys Bravo cinemax Sci-Fi VH1 BBC America 24 frames SundanceTV Logo CBS Musicals politics TNT Summer Winners travel Toys Rocky Photos GLAAD Cosplay period drama Fantasy 007 Certified Fresh crime drama Starz TIFF Thanksgiving PBS Martial Arts Superheroes USA Marvel CBS All Access Lionsgate Red Carpet Best and Worst NBC DirecTV Podcast Hulu 2016 2015 Nominations Animation President BET TCA 2017 FOX Fall TV Sneak Peek Extras The CW Mystery Disney Comedy Central Ghostbusters Infographic crime thriller Year in Review Reality Country Biopics Nickelodeon Star Wars Marathons Winter TV Universal TV Land CMT MSNBC Showtime Food Network cooking Sundance Reality Competition FXX Countdown History E! American Society of Cinematographers Calendar Trailer discovery ESPN thriller Tomatazos Awards Music GIFs Watching Series Trivia Character Guide Lifetime Rock Adult Swim Action Pirates dramedy boxoffice ITV singing competition Opinion Tumblr Writers Guild of America Valentine's Day