Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Think Like a Man Too Craps Out

Plus, Jersey Boys sings a pleasant but familiar tune.

by | June 19, 2014 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a wild Vegas weekend (Think Like a Man Too, starring Michael Ealy and Kevin Hart), a legendary vocal group (Jersey Boys, starring John Lloyd Young and Vincent Piazza), and a deadly road trip Down Under (The Rover, starring Robert Pattinson and Guy Pearce). What do the critics have to say?

Think Like a Man Too

23%

The Hangover set an absurdly high bar for comedies featuring outrageous pre-nuptial shenanigans in Vegas. Unfortunately, critics say Think Like a Man Too pales in comparison; it’s manic and frenzied rather than funny, and it fails to develop the appealing characters introduced in the first film, though Kevin Hart is usually good for a laugh whenever he appears onscreen. This time out, the couples from the first film head to Sin City to stage competing bachelor/bachelorette parties, and naturally, things spiral out of control pretty quickly. The critics say Think Like a Man Too is predictable, overwrought, and way too safe. (Check out this week’s 24 Frames for a gallery of movies set in Vegas.)

Jersey Boys

51%

Scan Clint Eastwood‘s filmography as a director, and you’ll quickly discover that he’s as comfortable in a smoky club or a recording studio as he is on the mean streets or in the unforgiving west. Eastwood has adapted the smash Broadway musical Jersey Boys to the big screen, but critics say it’s less successful than previous efforts like Honkeytonk Man and Bird — the actors are game and the period look is exquisite, but the narrative is a grab-bag of showbiz clichés. It’s the story of four guys who escaped a tough neighborhood to craft some unforgettable songs (“Sherry,” “Big Girls Don’t Cry,” “Walk Like a Man,” “December, 1963 [Oh, What a Night]”) before egos, business troubles, and the rigors of the road exacted a toll on the Four Seasons. The pundits say Jersey Boys doesn’t take many chances, but its pleasures — in particular, the songs themselves — are pretty hard to deny. (Watch our video interview with the stars, as well as this week’s Total Recall, a compendium of musical biopics .)

The Rover

67%

We expect our post-apocalyptic dystopias to be pretty bleak, but critics say The Rover is really, really gritty and grim, though the powerhouse performances by Robert Pattinson and Guy Pearce make it difficult to look away. It’s been 10 years since society has collapsed into lawlessness. When Eric (Pearce) discovers his car has been stolen by a band of thieves, he enlists a wounded member of the gang (Pattinson) to help him retrieve it. The pundits say Pattinson’s performance in The Rover is a revelation, and he and Pearce are what make this downbeat tale worth watching.

Also opening this week in limited release:

  • Norte, the End of History, an epic drama about a man who receives a life sentence for a crime he didn’t commit, is at 100 percent.

  • A Summer’s Tale, Eric Rohmer‘s 1996 romantic dramedy about a love triangle in a beachside French town, is at 95 percent.

  • Roman Polanski‘s Venus in Fur, a dramedy about a theater director who gets more than he bargained for from an auditioning actress, is at 93 percent.

  • Code Black, a documentary about the doctors in one of America’s busiest emergency rooms, is at 91 percent.

  • Exhibition, a drama about married artists whose relationship is coming apart as they discuss the sale of their modernist home, is at 88 percent.

  • Coherence, a sci-fi drama about a group of friends who gather for a dinner party just as a passing comet wreaks havoc on the power grid, is at 85 percent.

  • The Last Sentence, a World War II-era drama about an outspoken Swedish journalist challenging his country’s lackadaisical attitude toward tyranny, is at 71 percent.

  • Fonzy, a comedy about a sperm donor who discovers he’s the father of a shocking number of children, is at 60 percent.

  • Miss Lovely, a period drama about a pair of Bollywood producers known for their lurid subject matter, is at 44 percent.

  • Paul HaggisThird Person, starring Mila Kunis and Liam Neeson in a multistranded drama about three couples in the midst of relationship woes, is at 34 percent.

  • The Moment, starring Jennifer Jason Leigh in a thriller about a photojournalist who reunites with her estranged daughter when her boyfriend goes missing, is at 17 percent.

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