Critics Consensus

The Circle Lacks Dimension

Plus, American Gods and The Handmaid's Tale are both Certified Fresh, and guess How to Be a Latin Lover's Tomatometer.

by | April 27, 2017 | Comments

This week at the movies, we have a peeping Tom Hanks (The Circle, co-starring Emma Watson) and a down-on-his-luck Lothario (How to Be a Latin Lover, starring Eugenio Derbez and Salma Hayek). What are the critics saying?


The Circle (2017) 16%


It takes a long time to finish a major studio movie, and technology moves faster than many people realize — which adds up to something of a creative dilemma when a studio decides it wants to make a cutting-edge techno-thriller. This is just one of numerous reasons the subgenre has weathered an uneven track record over the years, and why today’s thrilling glimpse into the future usually ends up looking like a quaint relic before it even arrives on home video. This weekend’s The Circle, however, appeared to have a shot at bucking the trend: the movie has a few things going for it that many similar releases haven’t, like a top-shelf cast (including Tom Hanks, Emma Watson, and John Boyega), a high-pedigree screenplay (co-adapted by Dave Eggers from his own novel), and a story posing questions regarding modern privacy that seem likely to hold even deeper real-world implications in the future. Alas, all that good stuff seems to add up to a film that’s sadly less than the sum of its parts. Critics say the plot — which finds Watson’s character taking a job at Hanks’ utopian tech firm, only to discover potentially pernicious goings-on behind the scenes — never really figures out how to develop its intriguing themes, lurching from paranoid thriller to political commentary without ever raising enough stakes to keep viewers engaged. If you love the actors involved, or have the urge to indulge some good old-fashioned paranoia, The Circle might be worth a spin this weekend; otherwise, you’re probably better off waiting for its arrival on the home market and renting Electric Dreams or The Net instead.


How to Be a Latin Lover (2017) 39%


How to Be a Latin Lover has a title packed with mildly ribald promise, and a cast stacked with comedy aces who should be primed to deliver — including Kristen Bell, Michael Cera, and Robs Corddry, Lowe, and Riggle. Mexican star Eugenio Derbez stars in this Ken Marino-directed comedy about a doughy trophy husband who’s forced to readjust after his millionaire wife tosses him out, and moves in with his sister (Salma Hayek) while he tries wooing a local widow (Raquel Welch). It all suggests at least the possibility of a few belly laughs, and the single review posted at presstime is mostly positive — but until enough critics have screened Lover to build a consensus, there isn’t much more to say. Guess that Tomatometer!


What’s New on TV

Dear White People: Season 1 (2017) 95%

Timely, provocative, and sharply written, Dear White People is an entertaining blend of social commentary and incisive humor.


The Handmaid's Tale: Season 1 (2017) 94%

Haunting and vivid, The Handmaid’s Tale is an endlessly engrossing adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s dystopian novel that’s anchored by a terrific central performance from Elisabeth Moss.


American Gods: Season 1 (2017) 92%

American Gods opens with a series of wildly ambitious gambits — and rewards viewers’ faith with a promising first season whose visual riches are matched by its narrative impact.


Great News: Season 1 (2017) 76%

Great News overcomes its familiar trappings with gently subversive humor and a smart cast of talented, likeable actors.


Also Opening This Week In Limited Release

  • Harold and Lillian: A Hollywood Love Story (2015) , a documentary about a married storyboard artist and film researcher who worked on a slew of classic films, is at 100 percent.
  • Bang! The Bert Berns Story (2016) , a documentary look at the life and legacy of famed songwriter, producer, and label owner Bert Berns, is at 100 percent.
  • Natasha (2015) , about the troubled relationship that develops between two teens, is at 100 percent.
  • Obit. (2016) , a look at the writers who work in the obituary department at the New York Times, is at 87 percent.
  • A Dark Song (2016) , a horror-tinged drama about two people experimenting with occult rituals, is at 86 percent.
  • One Week and a Day (2016) , about two parents dealing with their grief over the death of their son in very different ways, is at 83 percent.
  • LA 92 (2017) , a look back at the riots that erupted in Los Angeles after the verdict in the Rodney King trial, is at 75 percent.
  • Buster's Mal Heart (2016) , starring Rami Malek as a fugitive with a surprising past, is at 69 percent.
  • Sleight (2016) , about a street magician who steps outside the law to care for his sister after their parents pass away, is at 70 percent.
  • Voice From the Stone (2017) , about a nurse whose patient may be possessed by an evil spirit lurking their remote castle, is at 50 percent.
  • Rupture (2016) , starring Noomi Rapace as a woman whose life is completely upended after she’s abducted by a group of strange and mysterious people, is at 29 percent.
  • Below Her Mouth (2016) , about the aftermath of a sudden affair between two women, is at 25 percent.
  • Chernaya roza (2014) , an action thriller about a Russian cop teaming up with the LAPD to bring down a killer, is at 20 percent.

Tag Cloud

Musicals ViacomCBS game of thrones Polls and Games based on movie ABC Family renewed TV shows San Diego Comic-Con SXSW Sundance TV hist high school romantic comedy TBS supernatural Sundance Now Trivia hispanic heritage month spider-man remakes space Film cinemax 24 frames Valentine's Day king kong true crime SDCC versus book adaptation zombies Summer venice diversity Watching Series doctor who Awards Tour TLC trophy APB VH1 rt labs Heroines The Walt Disney Company monster movies indiana jones child's play slasher Horror sequels historical drama Wes Anderson Animation cats Tubi Mary poppins debate Alien Hulu Podcast The Witch feel good concert rt labs critics edition discovery 73rd Emmy Awards Pet Sematary Paramount USA Network directors thriller BBC Character Guide Black Mirror saw Calendar Emmys Fantasy Rock El Rey strong female leads Kids & Family video on demand RT History Apple TV Plus Sundance ID french godzilla kong A&E marvel cinematic universe classics YouTube Premium Creative Arts Emmys adaptation casting Television Critics Association Netflix Christmas movies best CMT Mystery ESPN mcc USA ABC Instagram Live teaser Hallmark comedies Fox Searchlight theme song Election Stephen King WGN streaming international mockumentary TIFF breaking bad franchise asian-american Trailer reboot series critics Dark Horse Comics FOX Classic Film 2016 Drama Hear Us Out TNT jurassic park Superheroes dramedy justice league news Broadway finale Certified Fresh Spike politics boxoffice Disney Plus Superheroe streaming movies mutant LGBT Shondaland Rocketman cooking cancelled composers Warner Bros. Video Games Holiday Christmas golden globe awards batman Amazon docuseries football halloween Universal Pictures TV Land anthology Bravo 72 Emmy Awards IFC Films DC streaming service Cosplay OWN Lucasfilm transformers nature scene in color VICE genre elevated horror cancelled television Mary Poppins Returns Box Office aliens vs. DGA Spectrum Originals Grammys anime spider-verse Amazon Studios hispanic Red Carpet Television Academy Opinion target biopic cancelled TV shows Image Comics basketball boxing what to watch technology parents Toys miniseries Family Discovery Channel serial killer laika Marvel Photos singing competition green book docudrama FXX wonder woman nbcuniversal Peacock joker Avengers Comedy suspense SundanceTV werewolf scary Elton John name the review Turner scary movies animated OneApp DC Universe Black History Month biography kids quibi japanese NBA Lifetime Christmas movies Music MCU 90s CW Seed 45 Endgame History 2017 Nickelodeon ghosts sag awards Pride Month Ellie Kemper Britbox canceled TV shows screenings movie stop motion obituary political drama BAFTA TCA Winter 2020 superhero Turner Classic Movies BBC One 93rd Oscars japan Masterpiece toy story Star Wars Epix live action talk show dark Sneak Peek President documentary Pirates First Reviews Writers Guild of America X-Men 20th Century Fox nfl independent Film Festival Apple TV+ crime drama south america prank Shudder Countdown universal monsters Year in Review Logo Food Network spanish award winner TCA GLAAD IFC spanish language TruTV E3 E! PlayStation unscripted movies posters new star wars movies festivals 71st Emmy Awards spy thriller BBC America Tarantino Rocky criterion Fargo CBS The CW hollywood psychological thriller disaster Hallmark Christmas movies Apple Infographic Ovation blaxploitation Thanksgiving TCM mission: impossible documentaries Fox News Amazon Prime Video Western AMC Emmy Nominations cartoon Adult Swim Netflix Captain marvel Exclusive Video Schedule Interview 1990s scorecard Disney+ Disney Plus NYCC children's TV Nominations YouTube Chernobyl heist movie GoT sitcom blockbuster Legendary rotten HBO Max Spring TV comiccon 4/20 The Walking Dead blockbusters Mudbound lord of the rings a nightmare on elm street trailers Rom-Com reviews Action Comics on TV free movies richard e. Grant Trophy Talk TV renewals Brie Larson Country TV revenge art house ratings A24 HBO Go romance deadpool YouTube Red cults sequel The Arrangement adventure festival travel DC Comics stoner Awards First Look comics Musical NBC satire CNN australia king arthur television christmas movies war TV movies aapi jamie lee curtis stand-up comedy twilight Holidays Martial Arts harry potter Tomatazos black crossover PaleyFest DirecTV Freeform dceu Biopics Baby Yoda die hard action-comedy dreamworks new york natural history Crunchyroll superman cancelled TV series Columbia Pictures Cartoon Network American Society of Cinematographers medical drama LGBTQ FX Ghostbusters Fall TV Neflix 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards Universal Reality Competition TCA Awards emmy awards marvel comics Best and Worst adenture gangster Travel Channel sopranos cops YA chucky Anna Paquin rom-coms Reality cars TCA 2017 Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Tokyo Olympics Cannes new zealand video Song of Ice and Fire Paramount Network Esquire rt archives Funimation spinoff FX on Hulu Disney Channel italian Marvel Studios Star Trek indie Quiz golden globes olympics facebook National Geographic Women's History Month The Academy 007 comic books police drama 2015 99% Premiere Dates Marathons Oscars ABC Signature GIFs 21st Century Fox razzies period drama Lifetime films slashers comic book movie rotten movies we love WarnerMedia TV One legend Tumblr fresh all-time MTV Pixar sports dexter Chilling Adventures of Sabrina live event book foreign dragons Super Bowl social media royal family popular BET BET Awards RT21 witnail ITV robots spain Nat Geo Mindy Kaling pirates of the caribbean halloween tv dogs CBS All Access Syfy tv talk Lionsgate kaiju Walt Disney Pictures crime thriller science fiction Academy Awards zero dark thirty Teen 2018 Paramount Plus know your critic Winners mob Comic Book Vudu zombie Comic-Con@Home 2021 toronto VOD Binge Guide Extras New York Comic Con 2021 dc Pop TV The Purge HBO Acorn TV Winter TV 2020 Pacific Islander young adult hidden camera Comedy Central IMDb TV comic 2019 james bond archives women critic resources Amazon Prime worst Set visit vampires crime black comedy Pop latino See It Skip It MSNBC game show leaderboard Disney streaming service Marvel Television worst movies fast and furious canceled psycho comic book movies telelvision binge PBS AMC Plus Sci-Fi Showtime Mary Tyler Moore Sony Pictures Starz Crackle Disney screen actors guild Arrowverse