Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: One Direction: This Is Us is Lightweight But Entertaining

Plus, Getaway crashes and burns, and Closed Circuit is well-acted but not quite suspenseful enough.

by | August 29, 2013 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a popular boy band (the concert documentary One Direction: This Is Us), a desperate ex-racecar driver (Getaway, starring Ethan Hawke and Selena Gomez), and attorneys under surveillance (Closed Circuit, starring Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall). What do the critics have to say?

One Direction: This Is Us


If you’re a diehard fan of English/Irish pop sensations One Direction, no movie reviewer is likely to dissuade you from seeing One Direction: This Is Us. If, however, you’re a parent or significant other who gets dragged to the theater, critics say there’s a decent chance you’ll find this slick, well-shot, admittedly skin-deep concert documentary to be reasonably entertaining. Directed by Morgan Spurlock (of Super Size Me fame), the film follows the group from its X-Factor beginnings to the big time, capturing the lads on stage in full 3D splendor. The pundits say that while One Direction: This Is Us is hardly muckraking (or even revelatory), it’s a well-assembled and visually striking look at one of pop’s hottest contemporary acts. (Take a look at this week’s 24 Frames for a gallery of music documentaries.)



Rarely does a film’s title serve as an inadvertent warning, but critics say that’s pretty much the deal with Getaway –audiences should get away from this borderline incompetent chase thriller at all costs. Ethan Hawke stars as an ex racecar driver whose wife has been abducted; to save her, he must follow the orders of the kidnapper (Jon Voight) and drive around Sofia, Bulgaria with a would-be carjacker (Selena Gomez) in tow. The pundits say Getaway is an implausible, suspense-free mess, and its chase sequences are ineptly staged and photographed. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we count down Voight’s best-reviewed movies.)

Closed Circuit


The time would seem ripe for a smart thriller about government surveillance; unfortunately, critics say Closed Circuit, while well-acted, is smart without being particularly thrilling. Eric Bana and Rebecca Hall star as attorneys and former sweethearts who find their loyalties tried and their lives in danger when they join the defense team of an accused terrorist; as they investigate the case, they find themselves under constant scrutiny. The pundits say Closed Circuit raises some interesting issues, but its plot is alternately predictable and far-fetched. (Watch our video interviews with Bana, and director John Crowley.)

Also opening this week in limited release:

  • Our Nixon, a documentary utilizing footage shot by staffers during Nixon’s administration, is at 91 percent.
  • I Declare War, an action comedy about a group of 13-year-olds participate in a militaristic daily game of capture the flag, is at 79 percent.
  • Brian DePalma‘s Passion, starring Rachel McAdams and Noomi Rapace in a thriller about the fraught relationship between a advertising executive and her ambitious assistant, is at 40 percent.
  • American Made Movie, a documentary about the state of domestic manufacturing, is at 40 percent.
  • Afternoon Delight, starring Juno Temple and Jane Lynch in a dramedy about an affluent mom who hires a stripper as a nanny, is at 35 percent.
  • The Lifeguard, starring Kristen Bell and Mamie Gummer in a dramedy about a thirtysomething woman whose professional and romantic failings lead her to try to relive her teenage years, is at 12 percent.

Tag Cloud

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