After breaking into the mainstream as smarm personified in Wedding Crashers, Bradley Cooper seemed poised for a career filled with rude comedies and rom-coms — and for a few years, his filmography threatened to live down to those limited expectations, with stuff like Failure to Launch and All About Steve surrounding his follow-up hit The Hangover. Once he had half a chance, however, Cooper flashed his dramatic chops, giving audiences a feel for what he could really do in Limitless before vaulting into the Oscar-nominated A-list with American Sniper, Silver Linings Playbook, and American Hustle. Factor in his MCU stint as the lovably misanthropic Rocket in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and it’s clear we’ve seen just the tip of what this multi-hyphenate talent can do. For further proof, here’s a look at all Bradley Cooper movies, rounded up and sorted by Tomatometer!
Critics Consensus: Neither as clever nor as interesting as it appears to think it is, The Words maroons its talented stars in an overly complex, dramatically inert literary thriller that's ultimately a poor substitute for a good book.
Synopsis: When shallow wannabe-writer Rory (Bradley Cooper) finds an old manuscript tucked away in a bag, he decides to pass the... [More]
Critics Consensus:Joy is anchored by a strong performance from Jennifer Lawrence, although director David O. Russell's uncertain approach to its fascinating fact-based tale only sporadically sparks bursts of the titular emotion.
Synopsis: A story of a family across four generations, centered on the girl who becomes the woman (Jennifer Lawrence) who founds... [More]
Critics Consensus:Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2's action-packed plot, dazzling visuals, and irreverent humor add up to a sequel that's almost as fun -- if not quite as thrillingly fresh -- as its predecessor.
Synopsis: Peter Quill and his fellow Guardians are hired by a powerful alien race, the Sovereign, to protect their precious batteries... [More]
Critics Consensus:Avengers: Infinity War ably juggles a dizzying array of MCU heroes in the fight against their gravest threat yet, and the result is a thrilling, emotionally resonant blockbuster that (mostly) realizes its gargantuan ambitions.
Synopsis: Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk and the rest of the Avengers unite to battle their most powerful enemy yet --... [More]
Critics Consensus: With appealing leads, deft direction, and an affecting love story, A Star Is Born is a remake done right -- and a reminder that some stories can be just as effective in the retelling.
Synopsis: Seasoned musician Jackson Maine discovers -- and falls in love with -- struggling artist Ally. She has just about given... [More]
Since breaking out on the big screen with her scene-stealing appearance in the hit 2011 comedy Bridesmaids, Melissa McCarthy has earned a reputation as one of Hollywood’s most fearless — and gut-bustingly funny — stars, proving her willingness to endure even the most awkward situations and ego-bruising pratfalls in follow-up efforts like The Heat, Spy, and Ghostbusters. But McCarthy isn’t just here to make us laugh — she’s also proven her dramatic chops in more subdued fare like St. Vincent and Gilmore Girls, leading up to a Best Lead Actress Oscar nomination for Can You Ever Forgive Me?.
Now, we’re ranking all Melissa McCarthy movies by Tomatometer!
Critics Consensus: Melissa McCarthy remains as fiercely talented as ever, but her efforts aren't enough to prop up the baggy mess of inconsistent gags and tissue-thin writing that brings down The Boss.
Synopsis: Wealthy CEO Michelle Darnell (Melissa McCarthy) always gets her way, until she's busted for insider trading and sent to federal... [More]
Critics Consensus: Though The Nines doesn't solidify as well as writer/director John August would hope for, Ryan Reynolds's strong performance makes each of the film's intriguing segments worth watching.
Synopsis: Three actors (Ryan Reynolds, Hope Davis, Melissa McCarthy) tackle the principal roles in a trio of stories. In "The Prisoner,"... [More]
Critics Consensus:Ghostbusters does an impressive job of standing on its own as a freewheeling, marvelously cast supernatural comedy -- even if it can't help but pale somewhat in comparison with the classic original.
Synopsis: Paranormal researcher Abby Yates (Melissa McCarthy) and physicist Erin Gilbert are trying to prove that ghosts exist in modern society.... [More]
Critics Consensus: Simultaneously broad and progressive, Spy offers further proof that Melissa McCarthy and writer-director Paul Feig bring out the best in one another -- and delivers scores of belly laughs along the way.
Synopsis: Despite having solid field training, CIA analyst Susan Cooper (Melissa McCarthy) has spent her entire career as a desk jockey,... [More]
Movies can transport you from your life for a little while, but did you ever let the movies transport you in life? Every country and virtually every way of life has been captured on film, so it’s rather irresistible to catch the travelling bug from the silver screen.
Today, let Rotten Tomatoes be your travel guide, as we present 10 places whose architecture, landscape, and beauty have given life to some famous movies in history. Navigate the cities below and fire up your wanderlust!
What is your top movie vacation spot?
This week on home video, we’ve got a lot of things to cover, including the latest Hangover film, a home invasion thriller starring Ethan Hawke, and a popular horror-themed TV show. Then, we’ve got a pair of sci-fi flicks — one highly rated and the other, not so much — as well as a wealth of other movies and TV shows. Read on for the full list:
2009’s The Hangover was a huge sleeper hit, and though its follow-up was far less impressive, it still made a ton of money. In this year’s third installment, Todd Phillips and co. decided to ditch the “what happened to us last night” formula for a more straightforward action-oriented plot. Alan (Zach Galifianakis) is off his meds and out of control, so Doug (Justin Bartha), Phil (Bradley Cooper), and Stu (Ed Helms) escort him to a rehab clinic in Arizona. On the way, however, the Wolf Pack is taken hostage by a mobster (John Goodman), who’s been ripped off by Leslie Chow (Ken Jeong) and thinks the guys know how to find him. The Hangover Part III was much darker and less funny than most expected, and while it was refreshing not to get another retread of the first two films, critics simply weren’t convinced Part III‘s story made up for it. At 19% on the Tomatometer, it may be fun if you’re just looking to spend a couple more hours with these characters, but otherwise, it’ll probably disappoint.
It seems Jaden Smith is intent on following in his father’s footsteps; unfortunately, it would appear that After Earth was a giant leap in the wrong direction. Directed by M. Night Shyamalan — whose name was famously left out of all the marketing efforts due to his rapidly declining popularity — After Earth stars Smith as Kitai Raige, a cocky young cadet in the distant future. When he and his father, General Cypher Raige (Jaden’s real life father Will Smith) crash land on an abandoned Earth, Kitai must learn to master his fear, lest his fear become his master. Critics were fairly harsh on After Earth, shackling it with an 11% Tomatometer score and calling it dull and poorly paced. Some felt the film had some potential, but it’s all mostly squandered early on, and what’s left is a ham-fisted, sentimental actioner with less than spectacular action.
Ethan Hawke has been all over the big screen in the last year or so, and his films have gotten responses as varied as the genres they inhabit. The Purge, which opened back in June, was arguably one of the more interesting projects he worked on, though critics largely agreed it could have been much better. The year is 2022, and in order to combat crime and unemployment, the US has instituted a yearly “Purge,” — a single 12-hour period when all illegal activity is permitted. On the night of the Purge, James Sandin (Hawke) and his family are barricaded inside their home, but when their son Charlie lets in a bloodied stranger, a brief scuffle sets in motion a chain of events with tragic consequences. While critics applauded The Purge‘s clever intentions — utilizing the thriller formula in service of social commentary — most were disappointed it ultimately devolves into familiar clichés and needless violence.
In the wake of Gravity‘s stellar opening weekend, we have another tense space thriller arriving on home video this week. Think of Europa Report as Apollo 18‘s much more sophisticated cousin, as both films rely on the found footage theme to explore the idea that we are not alone in the universe. The story revolves around the crew of the fictional Europa One mission, tasked with investigating the titular moon of Jupiter for signs of life. The journey is not without its complications, of course, but things get really hairy when the explorers land and discover more than they were prepared for. Europa Report might be too slow a burn for some, but most critics found the film riveting and beautifully shot, especially for its budget. It also gets a few brownie points for focusing more on the science than most other films of its ilk; whether or not that’s a good thing will depend on the viewer, but at a Certified Fresh 78%, this should satisfy most sci-fi enthusiasts.
The idea behind FX’s American Horror Story is something of a novelty in contemporary television, as each season is intended to exist as an individual miniseries. The first season focused on a family who moved into a haunted house, and the current third season follows the goings on at a modern-day school for witches. This week, the second season of AHS, subtitled Asylum, arrives on home video. Set in 1964, the story centers on the staff and patients of a mental institution for the criminally insane, where demonic possessions and alien abductions are not out of the ordinary. Asylum is also notable for its impressive cast, which includes Jessica Lange, Joseph Fiennes, James Cromwell, Zachary Quinto, and more. Asylum earned a Certified Fresh 80% from critics, who appreciated its ability to be frightening and address some social issues all at once, and it’s available on DVD this week.
While most movie franchises find themselves running on fumes after one or two sequels, the Fast & Furious movies have improved as they’ve gone along. Critics say Fast & Furious 6 shows the series still has plenty left in the proverbial tank — its absurd plot is merely an excuse to stage (even more) deliriously exciting chases, stunts, and crashes. This time out, Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) and his merry band of thieves postpone retirement when government agent Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) asks for their help in taking down a vicious criminal gang that counts old friend Letty Ortiz (Michelle Rodriguez) among its members. The pundits say the Certified FreshFast & Furious 6 is as gleefully preposterous as previous installments, and if you’re in the mood for exhilarating, supercharged action set-pieces, you’ve come to the right place. (Check out this week’s 24 Frames for a gallery of the cars of Fast & Furious.)
The Hangover Part II was mostly content to recycle its predecessor, so switching things up for the second sequel was probably a good idea. Unfortunately, critics say The Hangover Part III is so joke-free that it barely qualifies as a comedy, and while the stars make for good company as usual, the energy level isn’t particularly high. Phil and Stu (Bradley Cooper and Ed Helms) decide to get their out-of-control buddy Alan (Zach Galifianakis) into rehab, but their plan is foiled when a mobster (John Goodman) forces the Wolfpack to track down their old frenemy Chow (Ken Jeong). The pundits say The Hangover Part III is substantially darker than the previous installments, and it lacks the go-for-broke exuberance that made the original a massive hit. (Check out this week’s Total Recall for a countdown of Cooper’s best-reviewed movies, as well as our interviews with the stars.)
Given the advances in CGI, it takes more than pretty pictures to make an animated feature worthwhile. Still, critics say Epic is so visually stunning and briskly-paced that it (mostly) overcomes its generic storytelling. While looking for her missing father in a forest, a teenage girl (voiced by Amanda Seyfried) stumbles across fantastical creatures and finds herself in the midst of a battle between good and evil. The pundits say say Epic‘s plot will seem familiar even to small children, but it’s a beautifully animated fantasy with an inspired vocal cast.
Also opening this week in limited release:
Nancy, Please, a thriller about a grad student who runs afoul of his malevolent former roommate when he tries to retrieve a treasured book from her, is at 100 percent.
Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, Ken Jeong, Ed Helms, Justin Bartha, and Heather Graham celebrate the end of the Hangover series by nursing Grae through her own hangover and telling her exactly what she did the night before their interviews.
Before he was an Oscar-nominated star of The Silver Linings Playbook, Bradley Cooper was one of Hollywood’s go-to guys for the sort of rakishly smarmy character that every truly great R-rated comedy really needs — comedies like, say, The Hangover, which shifted Cooper’s career into high gear in 2009. This week, as the Hangover trilogy prepares for its presumably Jeong-filled conclusion, we’re taking a moment to look back at some of the critical highlights from his filmography — and given that he only made his cinematic debut a little over 10 years ago, those highlights are more numerous (and more diverse) than you might think. It’s time for Total Recall!
For a fairly good-sized portion of the aughts, it seemed like Jim Carrey had lost the will to be funny — and while his newfound focus on sharpening his dramatic chops produced a number of fine films (including Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), it was hard for fans to keep from wishing he’d just cut loose with a good old-fashioned laffer after awhile. Sadly, when Carrey returned to broad comedy with Yes Man in 2008, the critics seemed to wish he’d stayed away even longer — although audiences clearly responded to the tale of a man who decides to turn his life around by saying “yes” to everything. Based on a memoir written by humorist Danny Wallace and featuring a supporting cast that included Cooper and Zooey Deschanel, it found favor with critics like Tim Evans of Sky Movies, who mused, “It’s that rare thing – an example of Hollywood getting hold of a good idea, working on it… and not screwing it up.”
The idea of a film adaptation of The A-Team kicked around Hollywood for years before finally grinding into gear, but all that extra time in development didn’t end up producing the box office blockbuster 20th Century Fox was hoping for. Still, Joe Carnahan’s cheerfully ludicrous big-screen take on the ’80s TV hit about a crew of war vets-turned-heroes for hire (here played by Liam Neeson, Sharlto Copley, Quinton Jackson, and Cooper) resonated with a number of critics who showed up looking for an undemanding comedy/action thriller and came away satisfied — including Entertainment Weekly’s Owen Gleiberman, who marveled, “It’s trash so compacted it glows.”
While it wasn’t a major critical or commercial success, 2012’s Hit and Run is, at the very least, an inspiration for every actor who begins his film career with a bit role like “Guy vomiting at party” — which is, not coincidentally, just what Dax Shepard did, a scant 14 years before making his screenwriting (and co-directing) debut with this low-budget comedy about a Witness Protection enrollee (Shepard) whose girlfriend (Kristen Bell) receives a job offer that puts him in danger of his shady past, which includes a trio of ticked-off former accomplices (including a rather hilariously bewigged Bradley Cooper). “Normally it’d be an insult to say the most interesting thing about a movie is one of the actor’s do’s,” admitted Simon Miraudo of Quickflix, “but seriously, you’ve got to see this thing sitting on Cooper’s head.”
At first glance, My Little Eye‘s 65 percent might not seem like such a great accomplishment. But when you take into consideration the fact that it’s an early-aughts horror movie about a group of people being killed for fun as part of a jury-rigged “reality show” for depraved weirdos, it’s pretty impressive (consider, for example, the critical fates that befell the similarly themed Halloween Resurrection and the House on Haunted Hill remake). While it would be disingenuous to argue that this is anyone’s idea of great cinema, if you’re in the mood for a confidently nasty slasher with a handful of unexpected wrinkles (not to mention an early, effectively creepy appearance from Cooper), you could do worse than this. “It’s a lot of style over very little substance,” admitted Rich Cline of Shadows on the Wall. “But there are just enough twists in the tale to make it far more satisfying than almost any horror film in recent memory.”
A sort of Flowers for Algernon with an action thriller’s pace and zippier cinematography, Neil Burger’s Limitless started from a timeless premise — what if you could finally tap into your full potential, even if it came with a terrible price? — and used it to add some extra dramatic heft to what might otherwise have been a fairly routine tale of gangland intrigue and corporate skullduggery. While a number of critics carped that Limitless seemed like the work of filmmakers who were operating at far less than 100 percent capacity, audiences turned out to the tune of a tidy $79 million gross — and most scribes agreed with Christy Lemire of the Associated Press, who argued, “You could pick the script apart for impossibilities. But why bother? It’s much more enjoyable to shut your brain off and have a good time.”
Bradley Cooper, Leslie Bibb, and Brooke Shields may not seem like the most likely horror-movie trio (or any type of movie trio, for that matter), but they combined to positive effect in 2008’s The Midnight Meat Train, director Ryuhei Kitamura’s fittingly creepy adaptation of the Clive Barker short story about a photographer (Cooper) who’s goaded by an art gallery manager (Shields) into investigating a serial killer who’s been offing passengers during late-night subway rides. The final act takes an over-the-top turn into the supernatural, but Anton Bitel of Little White Lies enjoyed the Train, calling it a “devilishly ambiguous thriller” that “leaves viewers to decide whether to take the conventional or the less-traveled tunnel through its narrative network – and the results are a stylishly bloody descent into madness, murder and hell itself.”
Cooper’s frat-boy good looks were put to good use in Wedding Crashers, director David Dobkin’s 2005 smash about a pair of lecherous divorce mediators (Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson) whose wedding-crashing ways lead them into an often-disastrous courtship of sisters (Isla Fisher and Rachel McAdams). As Sack Lodge, one sister’s unbearably preppy boyfriend, Cooper gave Crashers a perfectly loathsome antagonist — and helped frame one of the most memorably abusive games of pickup football in recent cinematic memory. Suggested Salon’s Stephanie Zachareck, “Wedding Crashers may be the most optimistic Hollywood comedy of the year, because it restores at least some dim hope that directors, writers and actors with actual brains in their heads can somehow triumph over unimaginative studio execs.”
It’s a tale as old as time: Three mismatched bros, the Vegas strip, and someone’s impending nuptials. Give The Hangover credit, then, for adding a few new twists — such as a misplaced baby, a memorable Mike Tyson cameo, and a shrieking, naked Ken Jeong — on its way to setting off one of the most profitable R-rated comedy franchises in history. Its sequel may have served as a reminder that familiarity often breeds critical contempt — and more than a few of you are probably eyeing The Hangover Part III with apprehension — but the original is, in the words of the Boston Globe’s Ty Burr, “Rowdy, scurrilous, and, for about three-quarters of its running time, a lot more hilarious than it has any right to be.”
After delivering the goods with 2010’s Blue Valentine, writer/director Derek Cianfrance had enough clout to put together a good old-fashioned passion project — so he went and made The Place Beyond the Pines, a sprawling, 140-minute inter-generational epic about a desperate father (Ryan Gosling) who makes a crucial decision that forever alters not only his own life, but the life of a police officer (Cooper) after the two men find themselves fatefully at odds. “This naturalistic drama is ambitious to the point of being unwieldy,” admitted the Chicago Reader’s J.R. Jones. “But once the story has advanced from one generation to the next and its thematic sweep has become apparent, these flaws seem much more tolerable.”
A mere three years after grinning and bearing All About Steve, Cooper executed an abrupt critical turnaround with his co-starring work in one of the most glowingly reviewed (and surprisingly successful) movies of 2012. Opposite an Academy Award-winning Jennifer Lawrence, he found himself surrounded with pretty much everything a modern actor could ask for — including a supporting cast that included Robert De Niro, Chris Tucker, and Jacki Weaver, as well as a screenplay from director David O. Russell — and he made the most of it, delivering a performance that demonstrated Cooper’s ability to incorporate elements of comedy and drama within the same scene, and earning an Oscar nomination in the process. “It’s a rom-com that succeeds in revitalizing that discredited genre where so many others have failed,” Salon’s Andrew O’Hehir wrote, lauding the Best Picture nominee for “injecting it with the grit and emotion of realist drama rather than with amped-up whimsy or social satire or montages of people walking on the beach.”
In case you were wondering, here are Cooper’s top 10 movies according RT users’ scores: