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

63%

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

52%

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

37%

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

45%

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

Freeform crossover Music Pixar screen actors guild jamie lee curtis Video Games sag awards sequel canceled TV shows Hulu YouTube Classic Film Black History Month romance robots breaking bad Opinion Sneak Peek Britbox Film GIFs Acorn TV Star Wars NYCC Bravo kids Interview Brie Larson Winners police drama Valentine's Day Song of Ice and Fire BBC Fall TV travel YA BET TCM book CMT TNT dramedy Reality Apple TV Plus Comic Book crime thriller movie crime drama IFC Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Drama thriller harry potter Awards Tour 2020 Disney+ Disney Plus halloween adventure IFC Films Disney streaming service Spring TV Pop science fiction Toys diversity teaser movies Trivia El Rey Rock DC streaming service Rocketman game of thrones Crunchyroll cancelled Stephen King zombies strong female leads name the review Marvel Television independent The Purge The Witch Film Festival Fantasy cinemax 2015 Holidays composers Rocky APB Best and Worst Avengers Television Academy VICE historical drama NBC Nickelodeon RT History OWN CBS All Access Grammys natural history Disney Plus Musical Watching Series game show Comics on TV Ghostbusters Nominations Election romantic comedy Sundance TV comic Walt Disney Pictures Mindy Kaling History animated anime Kids & Family Horror Sundance Now biography latino Shudder SXSW Netflix Christmas movies Crackle Showtime Turner Animation VH1 Winter TV serial killer Adult Swim 21st Century Fox Teen dceu ESPN DirecTV boxoffice space Red Carpet Spectrum Originals Christmas E! Schedule 24 frames Photos Shondaland Travel Channel finale slashers Emmys ITV free movies true crime Trailer First Reviews Paramount Network blockbuster cops MCU Pirates streaming Superheroe blaxploitation Cosplay Set visit Year in Review spy thriller Ellie Kemper video discovery Certified Fresh theme song spain FX Thanksgiving CNN Sundance south america Paramount FOX ratings Arrowverse HBO Max WGN rotten movies we love adaptation AMC Fox News TCA 2017 spanish language Women's History Month RT21 Country Reality Competition DC Comics Tomatazos Heroines TCA based on movie Mudbound mockumentary Hallmark Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Podcast scary movies dogs Syfy period drama Disney Channel reviews TLC toy story Infographic National Geographic Cartoon Network TBS award winner Academy Awards richard e. Grant war 2016 zero dark thirty San Diego Comic-Con TCA Winter 2020 cancelled TV series cults Tarantino technology The Arrangement hist Pop TV elevated horror dc MTV zombie PBS Captain marvel Mary Poppins Returns social media reboot golden globes series TV renewals Character Guide See It Skip It Funimation hispanic DC Universe cartoon Ovation batman SDCC Baby Yoda Starz LGBT television Warner Bros. Hallmark Christmas movies Sci-Fi werewolf revenge supernatural Apple TV+ USA Mystery 71st Emmy Awards facebook Awards Black Mirror Lionsgate Spike singing competition WarnerMedia Sony Pictures vampires Logo Tumblr foreign justice league Biopics talk show Nat Geo Amazon DGA Discovery Channel 007 aliens anthology cancelled television crime X-Men psycho A24 LGBTQ Endgame Peacock transformers New York Comic Con CW Seed YouTube Premium spinoff Comedy Marvel Elton John GoT stand-up comedy Star Trek documentary Creative Arts Emmys cats Marvel Studios ABC Family Box Office cancelled TV shows Lifetime President tv talk Tubi Mary Tyler Moore MSNBC unscripted 45 First Look Columbia Pictures Food Network franchise Quiz Amazon Prime psychological thriller Emmy Nominations sitcom FX on Hulu joker TruTV Western TV Land Netflix Cannes GLAAD directors Super Bowl universal monsters Masterpiece binge Marathons Mary poppins BBC America dragons green book miniseries Comedy Central 2018 quibi versus Apple ghosts TV Lucasfilm christmas movies Pet Sematary OneApp The Walking Dead 2019 ABC cars Polls and Games what to watch Amazon Prime Video Writers Guild of America politics Musicals SundanceTV Oscars 20th Century Fox USA Network 2017 Countdown TIFF casting docudrama nature Binge Guide Holiday Action medical drama HBO Trophy Talk renewed TV shows A&E disaster YouTube Red Rom-Com Epix PaleyFest Dark Horse Comics Martial Arts sports Pride Month Lifetime Christmas movies comics spider-man E3 CBS witnail Summer screenings Chernobyl Extras Universal Vudu Superheroes Esquire The CW cooking FXX children's TV Anna Paquin Disney festivals mutant doctor who Turner Classic Movies canceled Amazon Studios Premiere Dates political drama Calendar American Society of Cinematographers Family comiccon indie