Critics Consensus

The Gentlemen is Vintage Guy Ritchie

Plus, The Turning spins a twisty but unsatisfying tale, and Color out of Space and Zombi Child are Certified Fresh.

by | January 23, 2020 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a retiring kingpin (The Gentlemen, starring Matthew McConaughey and Hugh Grant) and a bedeviled babysitter (The Turning, starring Mackenzie Davis and Finn Wolfhard). What are the critics saying?

The Gentlemen (2020) 75%

Director Guy Ritchie has spent the past several years helming big-budget Hollywood projects like the Sherlock Holmes movies, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., 2017’s King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, and last year’s live-action remake of Disney’s Aladdin. But it’s worth remembering that he initially made a name for himself with sprawling crime capers led by ensemble casts, like Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch. Much like Rian Johnson did recently with Knives Out, Ritchie returns to his roots this week with The Gentlemen, hoping to recapture the same magic that made him a studio darling. Matthew McConaughey leads the way as Michael “Mickey” Pearson, an American ex-pat in London who rules over a vast marijuana empire. When Mickey decides he wants to sell off his business and retire, a number of interested parties emerge, setting off a war of double-crosses as everyone struggles to get the upper hand. In other words, this is classic Guy Ritchie territory, and most critics say it’s a witty, entertaining, fast-paced comedy that benefits from some top-notch talent, particularly Hugh Grant and Colin Farrell at their scenery-chewing best. That said, Ritchie’s penchant for colorful language and tendency to play sordid situations for laughs — bestiality, casual and frequent racism, and a rape figure into the narrative here — aren’t for everyone, so it’s likely to shock anyone only familiar with his more mainstream fare.

The Turning (2020) 13%

Henry James’ classic novella The Turn of the Screw is one of the most famous examples of open-ended gothic horror, and it’s been the subject of classroom debates ever since it was first published in 1898. So it’s fitting that it has seen numerous screen adaptations, many of which offer different interpretations of what exactly the story communicates. The latest is this week’s The Turning, brought to us courtesy of director Floria Sigismondi (The Runaways, Marvel’s DaredevilThe Handmaid’s Tale), who updates the story for a 1990s setting, and critics say it’s unnecessary and unnecessarily frustrating. Mackenzie Davis stars as Kate, the new nanny to orphaned high-society siblings Miles (Finn Wolfhard) and Flora Fairchild (Brooklynn Prince), who live on a large, spooky estate in Maine in the care of their maid. Kate quickly discovers that neither the children nor the house is quite normal, and when mysterious things begin to happen, she finds herself ill-equipped to make sense of any of it. Unfortunately, the critics largely also failed to make much sense of the film, which fails to generate much dread from its repeated images of creepy doll faces and ghostly specters in the distance en route to a baffling climax. James’ original story is clearly meant to inspire discussion, but The Turning isn’t likely to spark much other than bewilderment and maybe a little regret.

Also Opening This Week In Limited Release

  • I Wish I Knew (Hai shang chuan qi) (2020)Jia Zhangke’s documentary portrait of Shanghai and its remarkable history, is at 100%.
  • Color Out of Space (2020) , starring Nicolas Cage in an adaptation of the H.P. Lovecraft short story of the same title, about the effects of a meteorite on a family living in rural Massachusetts, is Certified Fresh at 87%.
  • Zombi Child (2020) , following two parallel stories about a sugar plantation worker in 1962 Haiti and his granddaughter, who attends a boarding school in present-day France, is Certified Fresh at 87%.
  • The Last Full Measure (2020) , featuring a star-studded cast in a based-on-true-events drama about a Pentagon staffer’s investigation of a Medal of Honor request for a Vietnam War hero, is at 63%.
  • Quezon's Game (2020) , a drama about former Filipino President Manuel Quezon’s efforts to rescue Jews during the Holocaust, is at 29%.
  • John Henry (2020) , starring Terry Crews as a former gang member who turns to vigilante justice when he encounters two children on the run from the leader of the gang he left, is at 0%.

Like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get more features, news, and guides in your inbox every week.

Tag Cloud

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