Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Jack Reacher Features Tom Cruise in Control

Plus, This is 40 is long but funny, The Guilt Trip squanders its cast, Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away can?t match the live show, and Monsters, Inc. 3D is Certified Fresh.

by | December 20, 2012 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a cool cop (Jack Reacher, starring Tom Cruise and Rosamund Pike); harried marrieds (This is 40, starring Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann); mother-son bonding (The Guilt Trip, starring Barbra Streisand and Seth Rogen); and a fanciful circus (the performance film Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away 3D). What do the critics have to say?



Jack Reacher

62%

Sometimes a relatively generic story can be redeemed by a confident central performance. Case in point: Jack Reacher, which critics say is a solid crime thriller that greatly benefits from Tom Cruise’s movie star charisma. Cruise stars as the title character, a former Army M.P. who’s called in to investigate a mass shooting, and soon discovers that he’s up against a dangerous foe. The pundits say Jack Reacher doesn’t lack for clichés, it’s a competent and tense piece of work, and Cruise is cool and compelling. (Check out this week’s 24 Frames for a pictorial overview of Cruise’s career.)



This Is 40

51%

Judd Apatow‘s films frequently balance laughs and pathos with a deft hand, and while critics say This Is 40 is uneven, it’s thought-provoking and occasionally hilarious. Paul Rudd and Leslie Mann reprise their roles from Knocked Up, playing an affluent married couple dealing with the stresses of parenthood, financial insecurity, familial relations, and hard-to-break habits. The pundits say This Is 40 is overlong and sometimes aimless, but it’s buoyed by a terrific cast, a perceptive script, and some very funny moments.



The Guilt Trip

38%

Barbra Streisand is so rarely in films these days that her starring role in The Guilt Trip should be cause for excitement. Unfortunately, the critics say that while she and Seth Rogen share an easy chemistry, it’s largely wasted in a formulaic plot. Rogen stars as an inventor who plans to drive cross-country to pitch his newest product. He invites his overbearing mom along in an attempt to fix her up with an old boyfriend in San Francisco. The pundits say The Guilt Trip is undeniably sweet, and the leads are in fine form, but there are absolutely no surprises to be found in the script.



Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away 3D

46%

If those whimsical acrobats from Cirque Du Soleil aren’t making a tour stop in your town, Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away is a decent overview; critics say this 3D extravaganza offers thrilling evidence of the troupe’s skills, even if it doesn’t quite match the experience of seeing them live. Producer James Cameron and director Andrew Adamson utilize a minimal narrative — a girl visits a circus and is transported into Cirque Du Soleil’s dreamworld — as an excuse to create a best-of package of the company’s various stage shows. The pundits say Cirque Du Soleil: Worlds Away features plenty of eye-popping imagery, but it may not win over those who don’t already love the group.



Monsters, Inc. 3D

96%

With Monsters University hitting theaters next year, now is as good a time as any to revisit the world of Monsters, Inc. which is getting the rerelease treatment this week in glorious 3D. This tale of a pair of monsters who can’t seem to frighten one tenacious little girl is one of Pixar’s classics; like most of the studio’s output, it’s Certified Fresh.

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

E3 IFC Certified Fresh Marvel BET war Lifetime aliens Countdown Photos Reality Competition SDCC Horror President binge Character Guide Fox News TNT Extras dceu Watching Series 45 Set visit TV Land medical drama cats NYCC Action TBS comiccon Reality Hulu American Society of Cinematographers thriller PaleyFest technology CMT YA Nickelodeon FOX TruTV talk show Disney Fantasy Warner Bros. TLC crime thriller Polls and Games dc crime drama Rock police drama MTV Comic Book AMC BBC America Kids & Family Amazon Opinion Lionsgate Sci-Fi Musical historical drama Starz cooking Mystery Martial Arts diversity singing competition justice league Premiere Dates VH1 Star Trek sports travel DC Universe Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Spring TV Schedule APB Super Bowl WGN Comedy Trailer TCA Valentine's Day TV RT History Musicals LGBTQ Infographic ABC BBC Masterpiece TIFF romance Winter TV Pop DC Comics Thanksgiving History psycho Logo Animation Syfy 2017 CBS All Access 21st Century Fox Mindy Kaling vampires Podcast harry potter The CW docudrama Red Carpet Emmys Rom-Com Mary Tyler Moore GoT The Arrangement Comedy Central science fiction MSNBC Disney Channel Summer what to watch based on movie cops Cartoon Network TCM 2016 Ellie Kemper ABC Family VICE Paramount OWN Sneak Peek cinemax biography Star Wars sitcom Awards FX Cosplay Crackle adventure Bravo HBO ESPN Interview Trivia Pirates X-Men political drama Dark Horse Comics First Look Toys Grammys boxoffice FXX Tomatazos crime 007 Sundance DirecTV Calendar 2015 CNN Video Games politics Fall TV GLAAD El Rey A&E Superheroes social media Biopics Food Network Rocky Music SundanceTV CBS discovery Nat Geo Holidays Marathons composers USA Writers Guild of America Western dramedy period drama ITV Year in Review Drama GIFs 24 frames Country TCA 2017 Box Office Showtime Ghostbusters PBS Best and Worst Teen zombie Freeform E! transformers Netflix Esquire supernatural serial killer Oscars Nominations Winners Tumblr Election NBC Universal Adult Swim