Critics Consensus

Critical Consensus: "Jackass" Kicks; "King" Is Dethroned; "Fearless" Is Action-Packed; "Flyboys" Is Grounded

by | September 21, 2006 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got antisocial behavior ("Jackass: Number Two," with Johnny Knoxville and the gang), hell-raising politicos ("All The King’s Men," starring Sean Penn), fearless warriors ("Fearless," starring Jet Li), and flying aces ("Flyboys," starring James Franco). What do the critics have to say?

For some, the perilous, grotesque antics of the "Jackass" posse offer inarguable proof of America’s cultural decline, if not a bellwether of the Apocalypse. For others (Critical Consensus included)… well, what can I say? Wasabi snooters? Off-road tattoo? Gets me every time. Now, Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, Steve-O and the rest are back with "Jackass: Number Two," a film that promises to be as puerile as its title. But guess what? It’s getting pretty good reviews! The critics say this latest collection of stoopid stunts and bad behavior maintains a certain warped integrity in addition to its sophomoric laughs. At 64 percent on the Tomatometer, this "Jackass" may be worth a ride, provided you can stomach this stuff. And it’s better-reviewed than its predecessor (49 percent).

I want those #&^%@* snakes out of this #&^%@* ball crawl!

"All The King’s Men" has everything that makes for a compelling movie. It’s got a great cast (Sean Penn, Jude Law, Kate Winslet, and Anthony Hopkins, among others). It’s based on a great novel (by Robert Penn Warren). It’s got great cinematography. Unfortunately, critics say, the superlatives end there. Loosely based on the life of populist Louisiana Governor Huey "The Kingfish" Long, "All The King’s Men" tells the story of a small town rabble-rouser’s ascent in politics and descent into shady morality. Critics say the film is too bombastic to work, with too many vague characters and an over-the-top performance from Penn. The film received a muted reception in Toronto; it currently stands at 15 percent on the Tomatometer. And it’s well below the 1949 Oscar-winning original film (94 percent).

Sean Penn makes Howard Dean seem pretty chill.

Jet Li has come to personify a specific film subgenre: the historical martial arts epic. "Hero" and the "Once Upon a Time in China" movies were marked by sweeping visuals and Li’s remarkable athleticism. But the star says he’s no longer making that type of picture; if that’s the case, critics say "Fearless" makes for one heck of a swan song. The film tells the tale of a great martial arts master who looks inward after succumbing to his own ego and the murder of his family. The scribes say "Fearless" is quite a show, with remarkable action sequences and an interesting philosophical undercurrent. "Fearless" is currently at 70 percent on the Tomatometer. And it’s Li’s third consecutive fresh American release, following "Unleashed" (68 percent) and "Hero" (94 percent).

"Fearless": I had no idea people wore baseball hats in China in the early 1900s!

"Flyboys" tells an old-fashioned tale of courage and heroism with the latest in CG technology; unfortunately, critics say, the technology ends up overshadowing everything else. The film tells the story of a group of Americans who volunteered to fly in WWI alongside the French. According to the critics, "Paths of Glory" this ain’t; they note that the CG effects are excellent, and the dogfights are exciting, but the story and the characters are far less involving. At 37 percent on the Tomatometer, "Flyboys" doesn’t soar.

"And another thing… None of you better be making any wisecracks about ‘The Pink Panther!’"

Also in theaters this week in limited release: "American Hardcore," a documentary about the life and death of the louder-faster punk rock style, is at 100 percent; "The Blossoming of Maximo Oliveros," a coming of age tale set in Manila, is at 100 percent; "Jesus Camp," a documentary about evangelical Christian campers, is at 93 percent; "Old Joy," a meditative tale of eroding friendship starring indie darling Will Oldham, is at 88 percent; "Solo Con Tu Pareja," the debut of "Y Tu Mama Tambien" helmer Alfonso Cuaron, is at 80 percent; "The Science of Sleep," Michel Gondry‘s latest head trip starring Gael Garcia Bernal and Charlotte Gainsbourg, is at 69 percent; the "Project Greenlight"- approved horror flick "Feast" is at 57 percent; and "Renaissance," a visually remarkable French noir, is at 50 percent.

"I wish I could be as carefree and wild/ But I got cat class and I got cat style."

Recent Johnny Knoxville Movies:
41% — The Ringer (2005)
0% — Daltry Calhoun (2005)
15% — The Dukes of Hazzard (2005)
54% — Lords of Dogtown (2005)
52% — A Dirty Shame (2004)

Recent Jet Li Movies:
68% — Unleashed (2005)
94% — Hero (2004)
26% — Cradle 2 the Grave (2003)
14% — The One (2001)
49% — Kiss of the Dragon (2001)

Recent Dean Deviln-Produced Movies:
90% — Who Killed the Electric Car? (2006)
54% — Cellular (2004)
47% — Eight Legged Freaks (2002)
61% — The Patriot (2000)
25% — Godzilla (1998)

Tag Cloud

Emmys Lifetime E! 2015 streaming Rocky Trivia thriller OWN ITV YA Ovation Fantasy Rock FXX political drama Cosplay Thanksgiving Toys TIFF DC streaming service Watching Series Dark Horse Comics Adult Swim APB BBC America LGBTQ Christmas Netflix talk show CW Seed Song of Ice and Fire robots Hulu Freeform TCA Box Office Lucasfilm Marvel sitcom transformers cults Musical ABC Family Sundance Now Superheroes Masterpiece Comic Book DC Comics festivals Pixar Horror doctor who docudrama Countdown Election diversity IFC USA Network Action Rom-Com Red Carpet Reality Showtime anime Crackle vampires MSNBC CBS TV zombie Fox News Shudder comiccon DC Universe TNT medical drama Country MTV Drama Tomatazos FOX Cartoon Network Pirates Biopics crossover singing competition National Geographic Acorn TV Star Wars crime thriller WGN Martial Arts X-Men 45 Fall TV dc AMC Interview serial killer Photos History Apple Starz composers 20th Century Fox VICE harry potter finale Superheroe Winter TV Comedy Esquire mutant cooking SDCC NYCC SXSW Best and Worst aliens Super Bowl technology Syfy Summer Paramount PaleyFest Mystery Kids & Family HBO TLC Teen binge YouTube Red Reality Competition TV Land Trailer PBS Western jamie lee curtis Epix GIFs Holidays Paramount Network Certified Fresh Ellie Kemper Polls and Games dceu Musicals First Look Nickelodeon Writers Guild of America Star Trek El Rey Mindy Kaling Bravo Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt 24 frames Awards 2017 science fiction romance Spike Extras Character Guide E3 biography Sci-Fi Britbox golden globes adventure The CW CMT San Diego Comic-Con crime drama American Society of Cinematographers President Sony Pictures Food Network CBS All Access Oscars cats Premiere Dates zombies NBC Grammys TCA 2017 USA GLAAD Nominations See It Skip It Columbia Pictures Winners 2016 Disney Channel boxoffice crime Spring TV historical drama TBS Ghostbusters Creative Arts Emmys politics VH1 what to watch police drama Disney RT History Music Shondaland CNN GoT justice league Universal unscripted ESPN travel BET SundanceTV sports Year in Review 21st Century Fox Mary Tyler Moore discovery Comedy Central 007 Animation Sundance psycho The Arrangement TruTV Calendar spy thriller TCM cinemax A&E Opinion BBC Walt Disney Pictures ratings Warner Bros. war Tumblr social media ABC Valentine's Day based on movie Schedule YouTube Premium blaxploitation DirecTV Infographic Video Games Lionsgate Set visit IFC Films cops Logo hist FX Amazon dramedy Podcast supernatural period drama Sneak Peek Pop Nat Geo Marathons