Critics Consensus

Game Night and Annihilation Are Certified Fresh

Plus, Every Day is an ambitious but faulty YA romance.

by | February 22, 2018 | Comments

This weekend at the movies, we have a night out with friends gone terribly wrong (Game Night, starring Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams), some terrifyingly unique sci-fi (Annihilation, starring Natalie Portman and Jennifer Jason Leigh), and a YA romance with a Quantum Leap-stye twist (Every Day, starring Angourie Rice and Maria Bello). What are the critics saying?

Game Night (2018) 84%

What if two of the guys who wrote Horrible Bosses were turned loose on David Fincher’s The Game? The answer — or something like it — might lie in Game Night, in which a married couple (Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams) find their weekly get-together with friends turned upside down when Bateman’s brother (Kyle Chandler) adds a murder mystery twist that soon seems all too real. It’s a solid setup for the type of pitch-black lunacy that co-directors John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein are known for, and although they’re not responsible for the script — that honor goes to former Disney writer Mark Perez — critics say the end result is still a comedy that just about lives up to its loaded premise, thanks in no small part to the efforts of a well-chosen cast. Whether you’re a fan of the people involved or simply in the mood for some laughs with a slightly nasty edge, Game Night looks like a winner.

Annihilation (2018) 87%

In this week’s cinematic equivalent of “unstoppable force meets immovable object,” author Jeff VanderMeer’s allegedly unfilmable sci-fi bestseller Annihilation meets acclaimed young director Alex Garland — and the winner turns out to be the audience. Critics say that this horror-tinged science fiction drama may not be the most faithful adaptation of the book, but it distills its core themes into a thoughtful, unapologetically challenging experience that leavens its weightier ingredients with genre thrills, outstanding performances from an ensemble cast, and a refreshing willingness to get weird. Expect the unexpected from Annihilation — and if the box office is kind, expect some sequels too, since VanderMeer’s book has a couple of follow-ups already on store shelves.

Every Day (2018) 63%

At this point, a filmgoer could definitely be forgiven for assuming that if you’ve seen one young adult romance, you’ve seen ’em all. There are exceptions, however, and despite what its rather generic title and fresh-scrubbed marketing materials might suggest, Every Day definitely adds a wrinkle to the genre. An adaptation of the David Levithan novel, this Michael Sucsy-directed drama follows the budding love between 16-year-old Rhiannon (Angourie Rice) and A — a literal wandering soul who inhabits a different body (ahem) every day. As a way of exploring gender fluidity — and the setup for a film whose cast is refreshingly diverse — it has a lot of potential. But while a number of critics have responded to the end result, the overall reception is turning out to be somewhat lukewarm. It’s still early for Every Day, with just a handful of reviews posted, and if you or your fellow filmgoers of choice are part of the target audience for this type of story, then you may still want to investigate. On the whole, however, this looks like something of a missed opportunity.

Also Opening This Week In Limited Release

  • November (2018) , a black-and-white sci-fi romance set in 19th century Estonia, is at 100 percent.
  • Survivors Guide to Prison (2018) , a documentary about the prison system in the United States, is at 100 percent.
  • El mar la mar (2018) , a documentary taking audiences on a journey through the desert at the border between the United States and Mexico, is at 100 percent.
  • Are We Not Cats (2018) , an unorthodox love story about the relationship between a pair of people who eat their own hair, is at 86 percent.
  • Half Magic (2018) , a female-led ensemble dramedy from writer-director Heather Graham, is at 59 percent.
  • The Young Karl Marx (Le jeune Karl Marx) (2018) , starring August Diehl as — you guessed it — the young Karl Marx, is at 50 percent.
  • The Cured (2018) , a horror drama imagining the aftermath of a zombie outbreak and the discovery of a cure, is at 50 percent.
  • The Lodgers (2018) , a gothic horror movie about twins condemned to confinement due to an ancestral curse, is at 44 percent.
  • The Chamber (2018) , in which military personnel fight for their lives after their submersible craft takes on water, is at 42 percent.
  • 7 Guardians of the Tomb (2018) , starring Kelsey Grammer, Kellan Lutz, and Bingbing Li in an archaeological adventure, is at zero percent.

Tag Cloud

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