Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Pelham 1 2 3 Doesn't Quite Take

Plus, Imagine That could use a little more imagination.

by | June 11, 2009 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a railway heist (The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3, starring Denzel Washington and John Travolta) and some magical financial advice (Imagine That, starring Eddie Murphy and Yara Shahidi). What do the critics have to say?



[tomatometer]MuzeID=1207149[/tomatometer]

The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, from 1974, was a stylish mix of comedy and thrills that, despite its reputation, is just dated enough to warrant a remake. However, critics say that Tony Scott‘s take, while slick and hyperkinetic, lacks the grit and cool of the original. John Travolta stars as Ryder, who takes control of a New York City subway car and its passengers, demanding a hefty ransom. Meanwhile, subway dispatcher Garber (Denzel Washington) tries to thwart Ryder’s plot. The pundits say the film is well-acted but has little sense of economy or patience; it’s a well-made but empty exercise. (See our feature “A Hundred Years of Heist Films,” in which we break down the caper genre by decade.)



[tomatometer]MuzeID=1190964[/tomatometer]

Imagine That

Imagine That has an intriguing premise, especially in these economically tumultuous times: what if a child’s fantasy world could predict the ebb and flow of the stock market? Unfortunately, critics say Imagine That does little with its setup, despite solid work from Eddie Murphy and newcomer Yara Shahidi. Murphy stars as Evan Danielson, a financial advisor who spends little time with his daughter. That changes when he discovers that her drawings and imaginary friends appear to have a preternatural understanding of the investment world. But will Evan learn to become a better dad? The pundits say Murphy is admirably restrained, and Shahidi is a natural, but the film around them is only sporadically amusing; it’s also overly gimmicky and predictable. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we count down Murphy’s best-reviewed films.)


Also opening this week in limited release:

  • Youssou N’Dour: I Bring What I Love, a documentary about the great Senegalese singer and his attempt to bridge the musical divide between the sacred and the secular, is at 100 percent.
  • Food Inc., a doc about corporate control (and the lack of governmental oversight) over the food industry, is at 95 percent.
  • Moon, starring Sam Rockwell and Kevin Spacey in a dark thriller about corporate skullduggery on the lunar surface, is at 90 percent.
  • Sex Positive, a doc about the complex life and times of gay health activist Richard Berkowitz, is at 67 percent.
  • Blast!, a doc about a team of tenacious scientists and their search for the origins of life on Earth, is at 60 percent.
  • Francis Ford Coppola‘s latest, Tetro, starring Vincent Gallo as a man living in Buenos Aires and haunted by his past, is at 50 percent.

Tag Cloud

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