(Photo by Claudette Barius/©Warner Bros./Courtesy Everett Collection)

All Matthew McConaughey Movies Ranked

“Alright alright alright!” Only one man in Hollywood could fully embody the laidback cool of that now-famous catchphrase: Matthew McConaughey. The actor broke into the scene with the landmark stoner comedy Dazed and Confused, and for a while there looked like he was good to just coast on his twangy bro-charm and ample shirtless scenes. Occasional dramas like Amistad and Frailty gave him acting cred, which some would say was squandered on a string of duds like Fool’s Gold, Failure to Launch, and Ghosts of Girlfriends Past – the mediocrity cresting with the 0% Surfer, Dude.

Then came the McConaissance.

It all started with 2011’s The Lincoln Lawyer: He entered one side a laughing stock, and came out the other a bona fide movie legend. The hits followed: Magic Mike, Mud, The Wolf of Wall Street, and an honest-to-God Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club. And there was that critically-lauded turn in HBO’s True Detective. Before 2011, McConaughey had notched six Certified Fresh films over 20 years; this past decade, he’s racked up nine. See where they all place, including his latest The Gentlemen, as we rank the best Matthew McConaughey movies (and the worst) by Tomatometer!

#45

Surfer, Dude (2008)
0%

#45
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Steve Addington (Matthew McConaughey) is a professional surfer and beach bum who lives to ride the waves. Content simply to... [More]
Directed By: S.R. Bindler

#44

Larger Than Life (1996)
11%

#44
Adjusted Score: 10354%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Jack Corcoran (Bill Murray) is a struggling motivational speaker who lives by the mantra "Get over it!" When he learns... [More]
Directed By: Howard Franklin

#43

Fool's Gold (2008)
11%

#43
Adjusted Score: 15591%
Critics Consensus: With little chemistry among the performers, humorless gags, and a predictable storyline, Fool's Gold fails on every level.
Synopsis: Treasure hunter Ben "Finn" Finnegan (Matthew McConaughey) has sunk his marriage to Tess (Kate Hudson) and his trusty boat in... [More]
Directed By: Andy Tennant

#42
Adjusted Score: 17929%
Critics Consensus: The Next Generation has the fortune of starring early-career Matthew McConaughey and Renée Zellweger, but it services neither headliner well in a convoluted and cheap-looking slasher that doesn't live up to the Texas Chainsaw Massacre legacy.
Synopsis: After leaving their prom early, innocent Jenny (Renée Zellweger) and three other teenagers crash their car in the backwoods of... [More]
Directed By: Ken Henkel, Kim Henkel

#41

The Dark Tower (2017)
16%

#41
Adjusted Score: 35749%
Critics Consensus: Go then, there are other Stephen King adaptations than these.
Synopsis: Roland Deschain (Idris Elba), the last Gunslinger, is locked in an eternal battle with Walter O'Dim (Matthew McConaughey), also known... [More]
Directed By: Nikolaj Arcel

#40

The Sea of Trees (2015)
17%

#40
Adjusted Score: 19458%
Critics Consensus: Dull, maudlin, and fundamentally empty, The Sea of Trees extinguishes the contributions of a talented cast and marks a depressing low point in director Gus Van Sant's career.
Synopsis: After traveling to Japan's Aokigahara Forest, a troubled teacher (Matthew McConaughey) meets a mysterious stranger (Ken Watanabe) who takes him... [More]
Directed By: Gus Van Sant

#39
#39
Adjusted Score: 20710%
Critics Consensus: Instead of being light and charming, this romantic comedy is heavy-handed and contrived in its execution. Also, it's too unoriginal.
Synopsis: While celebrating her newest and most lucrative account -- the wedding of Internet tycoon Fran Donelly (Bridgette Wilson-Sampras) -- Mary... [More]
Directed By: Adam Shankman

#38

Tiptoes (2003)
20%

#38
Adjusted Score: 8268%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A man (Matthew McConaughey) is reluctant to tell his fiancee (Kate Beckinsale) that his parents, uncle and brother (Gary Oldman)... [More]
Directed By: Matthew Bright

#37

Serenity (2019)
21%

#37
Adjusted Score: 33067%
Critics Consensus: A high-concept mystery with a twist, Serenity isn't what it appears to be at first -- unfortunately, it's also not anywhere near as clever or entertaining as it thinks.
Synopsis: Baker Dill is a fishing boat captain who leads tours off of the tranquil enclave of Plymouth Island. His peaceful... [More]
Directed By: Steven Knight

#36
#36
Adjusted Score: 24914%
Critics Consensus: Despite its sportsmanlike swagger, Two for the Money's aimless plot isn't worth betting on.
Synopsis: A former college athlete (Matthew McConaughey) joins forces with a sports consultant (Al Pacino) to handicap football games for high-rolling... [More]
Directed By: D.J. Caruso

#35
#35
Adjusted Score: 29240%
Critics Consensus: The few comic gags sprinkled throughout the movie fail to spice up this formulaic rom-com.
Synopsis: A young man (Matthew McConaughey) continues to live at the home of parents who, in desperation to push him out... [More]
Directed By: Tom Dey

#34
Adjusted Score: 32554%
Critics Consensus: A retread of A Christmas Carol, featuring Matthew McConaughey in a retread of his Dazed and Confused role, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past lacks originality, humor, and any semblance of charm.
Synopsis: Celebrity photographer Connor Mead (Matthew McConaughey) lives life in the fast lane, committed to bachelorhood and simultaneous relationships with multiple... [More]
Directed By: Mark Waters

#33
#33
Adjusted Score: 33217%
Critics Consensus: A queasy mishmash of poignant drama and slapstick fantasy, Angels in the Outfield strikes out as worthy family entertainment.
Synopsis: Foster kid Roger (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) loves the Anaheim Angels, even though they're the worst team in the major leagues. His... [More]
Directed By: William Dear

#32

Sahara (2005)
38%

#32
Adjusted Score: 44000%
Critics Consensus: A mindless adventure flick with a preposterous plot.
Synopsis: Seasoned adventurer Dirk Pitt (Matthew McConaughey) sets out for the African desert with his sarcastic companion (Steve Zahn) in search... [More]
Directed By: Breck Eisner

#31
Adjusted Score: 46890%
Critics Consensus: Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson are charming together, but they can't overcome How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days' silly premise and predictable script.
Synopsis: An advice columnist, Andie Anderson (Kate Hudson), tries pushing the boundaries of what she can write about in her new... [More]
Directed By: Donald Petrie

#30

Reign of Fire (2002)
42%

#30
Adjusted Score: 46559%
Critics Consensus: Reign of Fire gains some altitude with its pyrotechnic action and a smolderingly campy Matthew McConaughey, but the feature's wings are clipped by a derivative script and visual effects that fizzle out.
Synopsis: In present-day London, 12-year-old Quinn watches as his mother wakes an enormous fire-breathing beast from its centuries-long slumber. Twenty years... [More]
Directed By: Rob Bowman

#29

Gold (2016)
42%

#29
Adjusted Score: 54604%
Critics Consensus: Gold boasts an impressively committed performance from Matthew McConaughey, but it's just one glittering nugget in an otherwise uneven heap of cinematic silt.
Synopsis: Kenny Wells, a prospector desperate for a lucky break, teams up with a similarly eager geologist and sets off on... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Gaghan

#28

The Paperboy (2012)
45%

#28
Adjusted Score: 49537%
Critics Consensus: Trashy and melodramatic, The Paperboy is enlivened by a strong cast and a steamy, sordid plot, but it's uneven and often veers into camp.
Synopsis: In 1969 Florida, reporter Ward Jansen (Matthew McConaughey) returns to his hometown to write a story about death-row inmate Hillary... [More]
Directed By: Lee Daniels

#27

We Are Marshall (2006)
48%

#27
Adjusted Score: 53003%
Critics Consensus: Matthew McConaughey almost runs We Are Marshall to the end zone, but can't stop it from taking the easy, feel-good route in memorializing this historic event in American sports.
Synopsis: In 1970, Marshall University and the small town of Huntington, W.Va., reel when a plane crash claims the lives of... [More]
Directed By: McG

#26
#26
Adjusted Score: 58702%
Critics Consensus: Free State of Jones has the noblest of intentions, but they aren't enough to make up for its stilted treatment of a fascinating real-life story.
Synopsis: In 1863, Mississippi farmer Newt Knight serves as a medic for the Confederate Army. Opposed to slavery, Knight would rather... [More]
Directed By: Gary Ross

#25

The Beach Bum (2019)
57%

#25
Adjusted Score: 63207%
Critics Consensus: The role of a lifetime for Matthew McConaughey, The Beach Bum is set apart by Harmony Korine's distinctive style, but that isn't always enough to offset the unfocused story.
Synopsis: Moondog is a fun-loving, pot-smoking, beer-drinking writer who lives life on his own terms in Florida. If he can put... [More]
Directed By: Harmony Korine

#24

White Boy Rick (2018)
57%

#24
Adjusted Score: 66023%
Critics Consensus: Solid work from the cast - particularly a scene-stealing Matthew McConaughey - helps White Boy Rick make up for a number of missed opportunities in the script.
Synopsis: Rick Wershe is a single father who's struggling to raise two teenagers during the height of the crack epidemic in... [More]
Directed By: Yann Demange

#23

The Newton Boys (1998)
64%

#23
Adjusted Score: 65522%
Critics Consensus: The Newton Boys uses a sharp cast and absorbing period detail to help make up for the frustrations of a story puzzlingly short on dramatic tension.
Synopsis: Seeking an escape from poverty, sibling Texas farmers (Matthew McConaughey, Skeet Ulrich, Ethan Hawke) gain notoriety as daring 1920s bank... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater

#22

EDtv (1999)
64%

#22
Adjusted Score: 64417%
Critics Consensus: If it's not as ambitious as The Truman Show in satirizing the voyeuristic nature of television, EdTV is an amiable, witty comedy with fine performances from Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson.
Synopsis: In a desperate attempt to boost ratings, a cable channel decides to document the life of someone on a daily... [More]
Directed By: Ron Howard

#21

Contact (1997)
66%

#21
Adjusted Score: 70084%
Critics Consensus: Contact elucidates stirring scientific concepts and theological inquiry at the expense of satisfying storytelling, making for a brainy blockbuster that engages with its ideas, if not its characters.
Synopsis: In this Zemeckis-directed adaptation of the Carl Sagan novel, Dr. Ellie Arroway (Jodie Foster) races to interpret a possible message... [More]
Directed By: Robert Zemeckis

#20

U-571 (2000)
67%

#20
Adjusted Score: 71140%
Critics Consensus: Excellent cinematography and an interesting plot accompanied by a talented cast and crew make U-571 a tense thriller.
Synopsis: When a German U-571 submarine with a sophisticated encryption machine onboard is sunk during a World War II battle at... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Mostow

#19

A Time to Kill (1996)
68%

#19
Adjusted Score: 70005%
Critics Consensus: Overlong and superficial, A Time to Kill nonetheless succeeds on the strength of its skillful craftsmanship and top-notch performances.
Synopsis: Carl Lee Hailey (Samuel L. Jackson) is a heartbroken black father who avenges his daughter's brutal rape by shooting the... [More]
Directed By: Joel Schumacher

#18

Sing (2016)
71%

#18
Adjusted Score: 82502%
Critics Consensus: Sing delivers colorfully animated, cheerfully undemanding entertainment with a solid voice cast and a warm-hearted -- albeit familiar -- storyline that lives up to its title.
Synopsis: Dapper Koala Buster Moon presides over a once-grand theater that has fallen on hard times. An eternal optimist, and a... [More]
Directed By: Garth Jennings

#17

Interstellar (2014)
72%

#17
Adjusted Score: 88285%
Critics Consensus: Interstellar represents more of the thrilling, thought-provoking, and visually resplendent filmmaking moviegoers have come to expect from writer-director Christopher Nolan, even if its intellectual reach somewhat exceeds its grasp.
Synopsis: In Earth's future, a global crop blight and second Dust Bowl are slowly rendering the planet uninhabitable. Professor Brand (Michael... [More]
Directed By: Christopher Nolan

#16

Boys on the Side (1995)
74%

#16
Adjusted Score: 75719%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: After breaking up with her girlfriend, a nightclub singer, Jane (Whoopi Goldberg), answers a personal ad from Robin (Mary-Louise Parker),... [More]
Directed By: Herbert Ross

#15

Frailty (2002)
75%

#15
Adjusted Score: 78839%
Critics Consensus: Creepy and disturbing, Frailty is well-crafted, low-key horror.
Synopsis: Set in present day Texas, "Frailty" centers on the FBI's search for a serial killer who calls himself "God's Hands."... [More]
Directed By: Bill Paxton

#14

The Gentlemen (2020)
75%

#14
Adjusted Score: 93415%
Critics Consensus: It may not win writer-director Guy Ritchie many new converts, but for those already attuned to the filmmaker's brash wavelength, The Gentlemen stands tall.
Synopsis: Mickey Pearson is an American expatriate who became rich by building a highly profitable marijuana empire in London. When word... [More]
Directed By: Guy Ritchie

#13

Amistad (1997)
77%

#13
Adjusted Score: 79861%
Critics Consensus: Heartfelt without resorting to preachiness, Amistad tells an important story with engaging sensitivity and absorbing skill.
Synopsis: In 1839, the slave ship Amistad set sail from Cuba to America. During the long trip, Cinque (Djimon Hounsou) leads... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg

#12

Magic Mike (2012)
79%

#12
Adjusted Score: 87124%
Critics Consensus: Magic Mike's sensitive direction, smart screenplay, and strong performances allow audiences to have their beefcake and eat it too.
Synopsis: By day, Mike (Channing Tatum) makes ends meet any way he can -- handyman jobs, detailing cars or designing furniture.... [More]
Directed By: Steven Soderbergh

#11
#11
Adjusted Score: 90843%
Critics Consensus: Funny, self-referential, and irreverent to a fault, The Wolf of Wall Street finds Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio at their most infectiously dynamic.
Synopsis: In 1987, Jordan Belfort (Leonardo DiCaprio) takes an entry-level job at a Wall Street brokerage firm. By the early 1990s,... [More]
Directed By: Martin Scorsese

#10

Killer Joe (2011)
80%

#10
Adjusted Score: 86092%
Critics Consensus: Violent, darkly comic, and full of strong performances, Killer Joe proves William Friedkin hasn't lost his touch, even if the plot may be too lurid for some.
Synopsis: A cop (Matthew McConaughey) who moonlights as a hit man agrees to kill the hated mother of a desperate drug... [More]
Directed By: William Friedkin

#9

Tropic Thunder (2008)
82%

#9
Adjusted Score: 91388%
Critics Consensus: With biting satire, plenty of subversive humor, and an unforgettable turn by Robert Downey, Jr., Tropic Thunder is a triumphant late Summer comedy.
Synopsis: Tugg Speedman (Ben Stiller), pampered action superstar, sets out for Southeast Asia to take part in the biggest, most-expensive war... [More]
Directed By: Ben Stiller

#8
Adjusted Score: 86360%
Critics Consensus: Thirteen Conversations About One Thing is an intelligent and poignant look at lives intersecting.
Synopsis: A man approaching middle age decides to change his life. A rising young attorney's plans are thrown into disarray as... [More]
Directed By: Jill Sprecher

#7
#7
Adjusted Score: 89625%
Critics Consensus: It doesn't offer any twists on the predictable courtroom thriller formula, but with a charming Matthew McConaughey leading its solid cast, The Lincoln Lawyer offers briskly enjoyable entertainment.
Synopsis: Mick Haller (Matthew McConaughey) is a charismatic defense attorney who does business out of his Lincoln Continental sedan. Mick spends... [More]
Directed By: Brad Furman

#6

Bernie (2011)
88%

#6
Adjusted Score: 94861%
Critics Consensus: Richard Linklater's Bernie is a gently told and unexpectedly amusing true-crime comedy that benefits from an impressive performance by Jack Black.
Synopsis: Assistant funeral director Bernie Tiede (Jack Black) is one of the most-beloved residents in the small Texas town of Carthage.... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater

#5
#5
Adjusted Score: 96009%
Critics Consensus: Featuring an excellent ensemble cast, a precise feel for the 1970s, and a killer soundtrack, Dazed and Confused is a funny, affectionate, and clear-eyed look at high school life.
Synopsis: This coming-of-age film follows the mayhem of group of rowdy teenagers in Austin, Texas, celebrating the last day of high... [More]
Directed By: Richard Linklater

#4
#4
Adjusted Score: 103402%
Critics Consensus: Dallas Buyers Club rests squarely on Matthew McConaughey's scrawny shoulders, and he carries the burden gracefully with what might be a career-best performance.
Synopsis: In mid-1980s Texas, electrician Ron Woodroof (Matthew McConaughey) is stunned to learn that he has AIDS. Though told that he... [More]
Directed By: Jean-Marc Vallée

#3

Lone Star (1996)
94%

#3
Adjusted Score: 95436%
Critics Consensus: Smart and absorbing, Lone Star represents a career high point for writer-director John Sayles -- and '90s independent cinema in general.
Synopsis: In the Texas border town of Frontera, Sheriff Sam Deeds (Chris Cooper) digs up the past when he finds an... [More]
Directed By: John Sayles

#2

Mud (2013)
97%

#2
Adjusted Score: 103144%
Critics Consensus: Bolstered by a strong performance from Matthew McConaughey in the title role, Mud offers an engaging Southern drama that manages to stay sweet and heartwarming without being sappy.
Synopsis: While exploring a Mississippi River island, Arkansas boys Ellis (Tye Sheridan) and Neckbone (Jacob Lofland) encounter Mud (Matthew McConaughey),a fugitive... [More]
Directed By: Jeff Nichols

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 110030%
Critics Consensus: Kubo and the Two Strings matches its incredible animation with an absorbing -- and bravely melancholy -- story that has something to offer audiences of all ages.
Synopsis: Young Kubo's (Art Parkinson) peaceful existence comes crashing down when he accidentally summons a vengeful spirit from the past. Now... [More]
Directed By: Travis Knight

Everyone wants to feel like they belong, like they’re accepted, and sometimes, the best way to achieve that is to join a club. For example, if you were, say, an older woman interested in Twilight-inspired erotic fan fiction, you might seek out the cast of this week’s Book Club, in which four lifelong friends bond over tea, cucumber sandwiches, and the novel Fifty Shades of Grey. Or, you know, maybe that’s not your thing, and if it isn’t, then we’ve got 24 other clubs from the movies that might interest you. From bad boys to mean girls, musical ensembles to secret societies, check out the full gallery below.

In-N-Out for breakfast, macaroni and cheese at two in the morning, and corn syrup by the six-pack. No, this isn’t the ghost of your college eating habits come back to haunt you, but a sampling of what Charlize Theron ate to play mother Marlo in the new Jason Reitman dramedy Tully. Theron gained 50 pounds for the role, inspiring this week’s gallery the 24 most extreme actor transformations in the movies.

When the first of January hits, chances are you’ll be stuffed with holiday goodies, full of various meats and/or cheeses, and all partied out. You’ll also probably be looking for something to watch as you recover from all the festivities. Luckily, Netflix is releasing a ton of new stuff, particularly on January 1, that should keep you entertained. See below for the full list of new movies, TV shows, and originals coming to Netflix in January.


January 1 – January 7

 

The Age of Shadows (2016) 100%

Song Kang-ho (The Host) and Gong Yoo (Train to Busan) star in South Korean director Kim Jee-woon’s (I Saw the Devil; The Good, the Bad, the Weird) period thriller about two men on opposite sides of Korea’s fight for independence from Japan.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


AlphaGo (2017) 100%

This documentary chronicles the drama leading up to the historic match-up between a human and an artificial intelligence playing against each other in the ancient Chinese strategy game of “Go.”

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


The Godfather (1972) 97%

Al Pacino and Marlon Brando lead an ensemble cast in Francis Ford Coppola’s adaptation of Mario Puzo’s mob family epic, widely considered one of the greatest films ever made. All three chapters of the Godfather saga will be available to stream on January 1.

Available 1/1: The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, The Godfather Part III


Apollo 13 (1995) 96%

Tom Hanks and Kevin Bacon star in Ron Howard’s Oscar-winning historical drama about the ill-fated titular space mission, during which an on-board explosion forced three astronauts to abort a trip to the moon.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Strictly Ballroom (1992) 91%

Baz Luhrmann’s debut feature is an adaptation of his own stage production about a ballroom dancer with a unique vision and his struggle to compete and win a prestigious competition.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


The Truman Show (1998) 95%

Jim Carrey and Ed Harris star in this dramedy about a man who understandably freaks out when he discovers his entire life has been the center of a television production.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Midnight in Paris (2011) 93%

Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, and a slew of stars breathe life into Woody Allen’s dreamy romantic comedy about an aspiring novelist who, on a trip to Paris with his fiancée, is transported back to an idealized version of the city in the 1920s.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


The Shawshank Redemption (1994) 91%

Frank Darabont’s adaptation of the Stephen King novella stars Tim Robbins as a wrongly convicted accountant who befriends another inmate (Morgan Freeman) while serving his sentence.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Like Water for Chocolate (1992) 87%

Based on the novel of the same name by Laura Esquival, Alfonso Arau’s magical romantic tale centers on the forbidden love between a man and a young woman who can make others feel what she feels through the food that she cooks.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (1971) 91%

Gene Wilder offers an iconic performance as Roald Dahl’s slightly nutty candy mogul, who welcomes a handful of children to his sweets factory with the intention of bequeathing his company to one of them.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961) 89%

Arguably the most celebrated — surely the most widely recognized — Audrey Hepburn film. We just prefer to pretend all the Mickey Rooney stuff doesn’t exist.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Batman Begins (2005) 84%

Christian Bale and Michael Caine star in Christopher Nolan’s beloved reboot of the Batman mythology, a supremely effective but dark and brooding affair that set an ill-advised precedent for DC superhero movies to come.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


King Kong (2005) 84%

Naomi Watts and Jack Black star in Peter Jackson’s update on the original monster movie, about a giant ape on a remote island who is captured and brought back to civilization for the amusement of humans.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


The Italian Job (1969) 81%

Michael Caine stars in the original 1969 heist flick about a career criminal who takes on an eccentric team of accomplices for an elaborate robbery.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Lethal Weapon (1987) 80%

Mel Gibson and Danny Glover star as mismatched partners in this comedy about a pair of cops trying to take down a dangerous drug dealer. Its sequel will also be available to stream.

Available 1/1: Lethal Weapon, Lethal Weapon 2


Batman Returns (1992) 80%

For his cold, dark sequel to Batman, Tim Burton gave audiences not one, but two empathetic, pitiable villains: The Penguin (Danny DeVito) and the Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer).

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Stardust (2007) 77%

Based upon Neil Gaiman’s fantasy novel and featuring an all-star cast, this fantasy follows a young man who embarks on a journey through a forbidden kingdom to prove his love to the girl of his dreams by presenting her with a fallen star.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Caddyshack (1980) 73%

Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, and Bill Murray star in Harold Ramis’s directorial debut, a beloved comedy about the unruly, unusual new members of an exclusive country club.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Wedding Crashers (2005) 76%

Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn star in this romantic comedy about a pair of cynical divorce attorneys who spend their time crashing weddings until they both meet their match in two very different women.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Monsters vs. Aliens (2009) 73%

Reese Witherspoon, Seth Rogen, and Hugh Laurie lend their voices to this DreamWorks animated film about a group of abnormal creatures who come to the aid of humanity when Earth is invaded by an alien robot.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Batman (1989) 71%

One of the most hyped movies in Hollywood history, Batman found director Tim Burton jettisoning the plots (if not the dark tone) of Bob Kane’s original comics, and utilizing set designs reminiscent of Fritz Lang’s Metropolis and freakish, brooding characters similar to… well, a Tim Burton movie.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Training Day (2001) 73%

Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke star in Antoine Fuqua’s gritty crime thriller about a rookie cop learning the ropes from a veteran narcotics detective with a decidedly questionable moral compass.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Definitely, Maybe (2008) 70%

In this romantic comedy that essentially inspired How I Met Your Mother, Ryan Reynolds stars as a man who recounts his past conquests (played by Elizabeth Banks, Isla Fisher, and Rachel Weisz) to his daughter when his impending divorce makes her insufferably inquisitive.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Justin Bieber: Never Say Never (2011) 65%

Remember how innocent the Biebz was back in 2011, before all the tattoos and poopy-diaper pants? Watch this naively optimistic documentary about Ju-Bieb’s improbable rise to stardom from the gritty streets of Ontario to the echo chamber of YouTube and beyond.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Bring It On (2000) 64%

Kirsten Dunst and Eliza Dushku star in this tongue-in-cheek look at the competitive high school cheerleading scene that was so acceptable it lead directly to an MCU gig for director Peyton Reed (Ant-Man).

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Love Actually (2003) 64%

Thanks in part to its luminous cast, which includes Bill Nighy, Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Emma Thompson, Colin Firth, Alan Rickman, Laura Linney, Keira Knightley, Billy Bob Thornton, Rowan Atkinson, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Andrew “CORRRRALL” Lincoln, Richard Curtis’ yuletide romantic comedy has become a seasonal cult favorite.

Available 1/1 on: Netflix


Rotten: Season 1 (2018) 86%

This Netflix original series examines the global scope and impact of some common food items, starting from the plate and following the trail of money and politics.

Available 1/5 on: Netflix


Episodes 80%

Showtime’s show business satire stars Matt LeBlanc as an exaggerated version of himself, tapped to play the lead in a new sitcom imported from the UK, and Tamsin Greig and Stephen Mangan as the put-upon husband-wife creators of said sitcom.

Available 1/6 on: Netflix


January 8 – January 14

 

The Conjuring (2013) 86%

Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga star in this supernatural horror story based on true events about a family experiencing unexplained disturbances in their new home who call upon paranormal investigators for help.

Available 1/8 on: Netflix


Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (2017) 87%

Kevin Hart and Ed Helms lend their voices to this animated adaptation of the popular children’s books about a couple of young pranksters who hypnotize their principal into believing he is a superhero.

Available 1/10 on: Netflix


Colony: Season 2 (2017) 100%

Josh Holloway and Sarah Wayne Callies star in this sci-fi drama about a family struggling to survive during an alien invasion.

Available 1/10 on: Netflix


January 15 – January 21

Dallas Buyers Club (2013) 92%

Matthew McConnaughey won an Oscar for his portrayal of unlikely AIDS activist Ron Woodroof in Jean-Marc Vallée’s drama about the Texas man who was diagnosed with HIV and took matters into his own hands to find treatments wherever he could.

Available 1/16 on: Netflix


Bad Day for the Cut (2017) 92%

This indie thriller centers on a farmer who embarks on a campaign for vengeance through the Irish criminal underworld after his mother is murdered.

Available 1/18 on: Netflix


Grace and Frankie: Season 4 (2018) 100%

Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin star in this Netflix original series about two women who are forced to move in together when their husbands come out as gay and leave them for one another.

Available 1/19 on: Netflix


January 22 – January 28

A Futile and Stupid Gesture (2018) 67%

Will Forte and Domhnall Gleeson star in David Wain’s Netflix original film chronicling the rise and fall of humor magazine National Lampoon.

Available 1/26 on: Netflix


Dirty Money: Season 1 (2018) 100%

This Netflix original series from acclaimed documentarian Alex Gibney takes an episode-by-episode look at various acts of corporate greed and misconduct.

Available 1/26 on: Netflix


One Day at a Time: Season 2 (2018) 100%

This Netflix original series remakes and recontextualizes a popular 1970s-1980s sitcom about a divorced mother raising two teenage daughters: this time, they’re Cuban.

Available 1/26 on: Netflix


January 29 – January 31

The Force (2017) 87%

This acclaimed documentary takes a look at the men and women who make up the Oakland Police Department, and the department’s effort to reform itself over a period of two years.

Available 1/29 on: Netflix


Cars 3 (2017) 69%

Owen Wilson returns to voice Lightning McQueen in the third installment of Pixar’s Cars franchise, in which Lightning struggles to stave off retirement and makes one last go at winning the Piston Cup.

Available 1/31 on: Netflix

Not so very long ago, Matthew McConaughey appeared doomed to join the Hollywood scrap heap of handsome guys who just don’t have a reliable knack for picking the right script, but these days, it seems like everything he touches turns to cinematic gold — and with a starring role in this weekend’s Gold, McConaughey hopes to continue that streak. With that in mind, we decided to devote this week’s list to a look back at his ever-more-impressive filmography, so settle in: all right, all right, all right, it’s time for Total Recall!


10. Frailty (2002) 75%


It’s a lot easier to shock viewers and/or gross them out than to truly scare them, which is one of the reasons why fans of smart, low-key horror movies don’t often have a lot to choose from at the cineplex — and why when exceptions to the rule arrive, like Bill Paxton’s deviously creepy Frailty, they aren’t afforded the level of marketing muscle that your average slasher might enjoy. Still, even if it’s something of a cult classic, this tale of a deranged religious fanatic (Paxton) indoctrinating his sons into his cult of “demon-slaying” — told through flashbacks relayed to an FBI agent (Powers Boothe) by a mysterious narrator (McConaughey) — it won the immediate admiration of a long list of critics that includes the Village Voice’s Michael Atkinson, who wrote, “If Frailty isn’t quite the devastation it could’ve been … it remains the most pungent American-Pentecostal mini-nightmare since 1996’s true-crime doc Paradise Lost.”

Watch Trailer

9. Amistad (1997) 77%


A year after making his big breakthrough in Joel Schumacher’s A Time to Kill, McConaughey proved he had more than popcorn movies on his mind with his performance as attorney Roger Sherman Baldwin in Amistad, Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-nominated account of the U.S. Supreme Court battle that erupted in 1841 after a slave ship was impounded by the American military following a successful revolt by its unwilling cargo. Compelling not just as a human rights drama, the story has enough real-life intrigue to fill up several films — including former President John Quincy Adams (Anthony Hopkins) coming out of retirement to help argue the slaves’ case, to the chagrin of pro-slavery President Martin Van Buren (Nigel Hawthorne). As impeccably mounted and impressively cast as you’d expect of any Spielberg prestige production, Amistad picked up four Oscar nominations, and if a handful of critics felt its epic sweep was at odds with the true story’s historical facts, the majority were too busy applauding to nitpick. “As Spielberg vehicles go,” argued USA Today’s Susan Wloszczyna, “Amistad — part mystery, action thriller, courtroom drama, even culture-clash comedy — lands between the disturbing lyricism of Schindler’s List and the storybook artificiality of The Color Purple.”

Watch Trailer

8. Killer Joe (2011) 80%


The third entry in McConaughey’s trifecta of critical hits in 2012, Killer Joe found Exorcist director William Friedkin snapping a long dry streak with a story the poster’s tagline described as “a totally twisted deep-fried Texas redneck trailer park murder story.” That’s a lot to live up to, but as far as most critics were concerned, Joe stuck the landing, rounding up a suitably killer cast — led by McConaughey as a cop-slash-contract killer hired by a drug dealer (Emile Hirsch) who schemes to off his own mother in order to get at her insurance money — in service of seedy, seamy NC-17 thrills. “Watching Killer Joe to the bitter end is like playing the Pick 6 lottery and getting three of the numbers right,” chuckled Joe Williams for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “You don’t win anything, but you still think you’re smarter than all those other idiots.”

Watch Trailer

7. Magic Mike (2012) 79%


Of all the critical smashes in Matthew McConaughey’s filmography, Magic Mike will probably always be the most unlikely; generally speaking, movies about strippers tend to inspire derision, not sequels. Here’s the happy exception to that rule, a dramedy about a humble dancer with big dreams (Channing Tatum) who teams up with a beefcake buddy (Alex Pettyfer) on his way to what he hopes will be a bright future as the owner of his own business — if he can just save enough money to be able to give notice to his boss (McConaughey) at the local strip joint. Smoothly directed by Steven Soderbergh and rounded out with a capable supporting cast that included Joe Manganiello and Olivia Munn, Magic Mike transcended its shallow-seeming premise to offer crowd-pleasing yet thought-provoking entertainment; as Owen Gleiberman wrote for Entertainment Weekly, the movie “has a conventional structure, yet a teasing question percolates beneath: If selling yourself is as much fun as this movie makes it look, what could be wrong with it?”

Watch Trailer

6. The Lincoln Lawyer (2011) 83%


Fifteen years after he caught an early career break by playing a lawyer in the John Grisham adaptation A Time to Kill, McConaughey returned to the courtroom for an altogether different kind of legal drama. Based on Michael Connelly’s novel of the same name, The Lincoln Lawyer follows a pivotal case for Mickey Haller, a small-time attorney who maintains his practice out of the back of a town car. If the end result didn’t really break any new ground for McConaughey or the courtroom film genre in general, it still represented a solid step back from the rom-com brink for its star, while giving him an opportunity to play just the sort of rakishly charming ne’er-do-well that’s so well-suited to his Newmanesque appeal. “The Lincoln Lawyer is not a feat of genre-breaking design,” admitted the Denver Post’s Lisa Kennedy. “But it is a well-oiled machine.”

Watch Trailer

5. Bernie (2011) 88%


Usually, a movie that depicts a district attorney doggedly pursuing a conviction against a man who killed a little old lady will present the lawyer as the hero and the killer as the villain. Not so Bernie, which found director Richard Linklater telling the exceedingly weird real-life tale of a Texas man (Jack Black) whose eccentric relationship with a wealthy widow (Shirley MacLaine) ended in her death and his trial for murder — a trial that the local DA (McConaughey) had to petition the bench to move due to the accused’s widespread popularity in the town where the killing occurred. Stranger than fiction and darkly amusing, the movie wowed critics while upending expectations; as Tara Brady cautioned for the Irish Times, “It looks like a Southern Gothic and feels like a particularly hilarious farce, but Bernie is not at all what you think.”

Watch Trailer

4. Lone Star (1996) 94%


Writer-director John Sayles earned an Oscar nomination for his work on Lone Star, which employs an outstanding ensemble cast — including Chris Cooper as a Texas sheriff investigating an old murder, Elizabeth Peña as his recently rekindled old flame, and McConaughey as Cooper’s father (in flashbacks, naturally) — to plumb the depths of small-town secrets, betrayal, and that ever-testy father-son dynamic. It’s built from fairly familiar stuff, in other words, but very skillfully; as Kim Newman wrote for Empire, “Like all the best Westerns, this is at once a morality play about individual responsibility and a challenging essay about American history. You’ll watch this for the third or fourth time and see fresh material. Outstanding.”

Watch Trailer

3. Dazed and Confused (1993) 92%


Plenty of filmmakers have sought inspiration in the shiftless glory days of idle youth, and from a distance, Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused may have seemed like just another one of those movies about kids entering, leaving, or wishing they’d never left high school when it bowed in theaters during the fall of 1993. As any member of its ever-expanding cult can attest, however, Linklater’s take on the suburban adolescent experience is sharper and more empathetic than the rest — and although it’s a finely detailed period piece set in the 1970s, its themes are timeless enough to resonate with anyone who’s ever experienced the thrill and unearned ennui of youth. It’s also remarkably well cast, and because this is his list, we’ll single out McConaughey’s memorable turn as the cheerfully scuzzy, catchphrase-spawning David Wooderson for particular praise — as did the Austin Chronicle’s Marjorie Baumgarten, saying, “He is a character we’re all too familiar with in the movies, but McConaughey nails this guy without a hint of condescension or whimsy, claiming this character for all time as his own.”

Watch Trailer

2. Dallas Buyers Club (2013) 92%


Nothing screams “for your consideration” like an actor physically transforming himself for a role, to the point that it’s become something of a signal for filmgoers cynical enough to be suspicious of a star’s motivations when taking a part. But as often as not, that commitment pays off; just ask Matthew McConaughey, whose rather frightening pre-shooting regimen included dropping nearly 50 pounds to portray Ron Woodroof, the man whose gut-wrenching and inspiring real-life story forms the heart of Dallas Buyers Club. Academy voters heard those “for your consideration” screams, affording the movie six nominations — three of which it won, including Best Actor for McConaughey and Best Supporting Actor for his co-star Jared Leto. “Just about everything is right with Dallas Buyers Club,” wrote Steven Rea for the Philadelphia Inquirer, “beginning with Matthew McConaughey’s literally transformative portrayal.”

Watch Trailer

1. Mud (2013) 97%


McConaughey has fired off an impressive string of critically lauded pictures since spending the early aughts frittering away his early buzz on stuff like Failure to Launch and Ghosts of Girlfriends Past — perhaps none more impressive than Mud, writer-director Jeff Nichols’ sparkling Southern Gothic about a mysterious man (McConaughey) whose discovery by a pair of kids on a Mississippi island presages a series of events that’s part thriller, part coming-of-age drama, and (according to most critics), all wonderful. TIME’s Mary Corliss summed up the poetic rapture felt by many of her colleagues, writing, “Glorious vision of youth and truth, love and loss, your name is Mud.”

Watch Trailer

This weekend, the movie everyone’s talking about is Suicide Squad — and while a number of cast members have earned critical applause for their efforts, it’s Jared Leto‘s turn as the Joker that we’ve all been waiting to see. In honor of that moment’s eagerly anticipated arrival, we’re dedicating this week’s feature to a fond look back at some of the brightest critical highlights from the Oscar-winning star’s career, and the results add up to one admirably eclectic journey. It’s time for Total Recall!


 Prefontaine (1997) 56%

Leto was still Jordan Catalano from My So-Called Life in a lot of filmgoers’ eyes when he scored the leading role in Prefontaine — but those who passed on director Steve James‘ biopic about the titular Olympic runner missed the opportunity to see the results of Leto’s Method dedication for the first time on the big screen. As he would with subsequent roles, Leto dove in completely, adopting Prefontaine’s voice and running style; the end result, coupled with an already-eerie physical similarity, went a long way toward proving he was more than just a pretty face. Alas, the rest of the movie didn’t quite live up to Leto’s efforts, and many critics dismissed Prefontaine as a TV-worthy hagiography — but it did have its fans, including Roger Ebert, who wrote, “Here is a sports movie in the tradition of the best sportswriting, where athletes are portrayed warts and all. You do not have to be nice to win races, but you have to be good.”

Watch Trailer


How to Make an American Quilt (1995) 63%

Fresh off My So-Called Life, Leto got his big-screen break with a supporting part in director Jocelyn Moorhouse‘s adaptation of the Whitney Otto novel How to Make an American Quilt. Starring Winona Ryder (with whom Leto would later share screen time in Girl, Interrupted), the movie offers an episodic look at the stories of a group of women who seek to soothe the nerves of a bride-to-be by sharing some hard-won wisdom from their own pasts. Leto’s role, as the hunky kid who engages in an interracial affair with his family’s servant, takes up a relatively brief portion of the movie — but it got him started at the movies, and played a part in a modest critical and commercial hit that, as the New York Times’ Caryn James wrote, “takes the makings of a limp ‘women’s weeper’ and as if by magic, spins them into gold.”

Watch Trailer


Lord of War (2005) 61%

How many chances does a guy get in life to play one half of a pair of arms-dealing brothers opposite Nicolas Cage? Leto got his opportunity with Lord of War, writer-director Andrew Niccol‘s 2005 war crime drama about a couple of crazy kids with a dream to make a bunch of money by selling lethal weapons to anyone with enough money to make the sale. The end result of years of research on Niccol’s part, it seethes with righteous anger without tipping over into didacticism — and offers Cage and Leto plenty of material to sink their dramatic teeth into, including an arc for Leto’s character that includes drug addiction in addition to morally reprehensible gun-running. “Niccol is no stranger to hot-button issues,” wrote Time Out’s Dave Calhoun, “but he outdoes his previous efforts by injecting this satire of war profiteering in the Halliburton age with a wicked arsenic wit.”

Watch Trailer


Mr. Nobody (2009) 68%

Leto’s fondness for projects lying off the beaten path was further reflected in Mr. Nobody, writer-director Jaco Van Dormael‘s sci-fi drama about a 118-year-old man whose memories send him back to three critical junctures in his long life — and send the viewer wandering along alternate timelines that might have resulted from different decisions along the way. The movie bowed in Venice in 2009 and didn’t make it to the States for another four years, the kind of delay that often suggests more than a few fundamental flaws in a film — yet while it wasn’t exactly rapturously received by critics, reviews outlined a picture whose charms outweighed its circular, meandering narrative. “Never mind that several characters seem to gain or lose British accents throughout the course of the film,” wrote the Washington Post’s Michael O’Sullivan. “The lack of continuity only enhances the sense of deliciously dizzying disequilibrium.”

Watch Trailer


American Psycho (2000) 69%

It took nine years, but Bret Easton Ellis’ controversial 1991 novel got the big-screen treatment with this adaptation, which cast Christian Bale as the loathsome, status-obsessed serial killer Patrick Bateman, Reese Witherspoon as his equally shallow girlfriend, and Leto as a smarmy co-worker whose superior business card sets off the movie’s killing spree. Though many of the cultural touchstones described in the book had faded by the time American Psycho reached the screen, its central observations — and the consumer culture that produced them — remained as timely as ever. Its torrent of generally unappealing behavior and horrific violence make Psycho an unpleasant film, but one that, in the words of Time’s Richard Corliss, “needs to be seen and appreciated, like a serpent in a glass cage.”

Watch Trailer


Panic Room (2002) 75%

A claustrophobic thriller with the heart of a B movie, Panic Room found director David Fincher wielding a stellar cast (including Jodie Foster, Forest Whitaker, and a young Kristen Stewart) and dropping them in the middle of a tightly wound, tension-filled storyline. Panic sets in almost immediately, with single parent Meg Altman (Foster) and her daughter Sarah (Stewart) spending their first night in the huge Manhattan brownstone Meg has just purchased; what Meg and Sarah don’t know is that their new home contains some very valuable hidden treasure — as well as a trio of very bad men (including the skin-crawling Dwight Yoakam and a mysteriously cornrowed Leto) who will stop at nothing to steal it. Ultimately, Panic Room is mostly just a nail-biter — albeit one assembled with uncommon flair. “This is just a big, dumb, commercial suspenser,” admitted Empire’s Caroline Westbrook, “but it’s one of the best for ages, reminding us that it is still possible to make a high-quality piece of popcorn entertainment.”

Watch Trailer


The Thin Red Line (1998) 81%

Marking director Terrence Malick’s return from a 20-year absence and featuring the work of a stellar ensemble cast that included Leto, Woody Harrelson, Adrien Brody, George Clooney, John Cusack, and Sean Penn, The Thin Red Line was the film buff event of 1998. Even with a 170-minute running time, there wasn’t enough Line to go around — in fact, during all the whittling between its five-hour first cut and the theatrical version, Malick excised entire performances by Martin Sheen, Gary Oldman, Billy Bob Thornton, Viggo Mortensen and others, meaning that even if Leto’s performance as Second Lieutenant Floyd Whyte isn’t his biggest role, it’s really saying something that it ended up in the movie at all. And for most critics, there was no arguing with the end result; as Norman Green wrote for Film.com, “It wrestles with complexity, speaks to us in poetry, weaves multiple narrative strands into a tapestry, opens the festering wounds of war and gazes inside without blinking.”

Watch Trailer


Requiem for a Dream (2000) 79%

Like the Hubert Selby, Jr. novel from which it’s adapted, Darren Aronofsky‘s Requiem for a Dream is certainly not for everyone. An unflinching look at the misery of addiction, Requiem follows the hellish descents of a widow named Sara Goldfarb (Ellen Burstyn), her son Harry (Jared Leto), his girlfriend Marion (Jennifer Connelly), and Harry’s friend Tyrone (Marlon Wayans). After 102 minutes, all four characters have been pretty well run through the wringer; Burstyn winds up institutionalized, Leto loses an arm, Wayans has to go cold turkey in a jail cell — and Connelly crosses paths with Big Tim, played with thoroughly skeevy elan by Keith David. Good taste prevents us from getting into the exact nature of their relationship; suffice it to say that Connelly’s character arc demonstrates that some people will do just about anything to get their fix, and David’s performance reminds us that other people will stoop at nothing to take advantage of an addict. “Never have we been taken this close to the edge, and never have the characters teetering over it elicited so much sympathy,” wrote Eugene Novikov of Film Blather. ” Requiem is difficult to watch, but it richly rewards those who stay with it.”

Watch Trailer


Fight Club (1999) 79%

Yes, we are going to talk about Fight Club. Initially rejected by critics and ignored by audiences, director David Fincher’s third feature steadily built a cult following on DVD; these days, it’s widely regarded as one of the best films of the ‘90s, which not only helped reaffirm Fincher as a director of stylishly thoughtful fare, but established the Hollywood bona fides of author Chuck Palahniuk, from whose novel the movie was adapted. The plot follows the eager descent of a nameless protagonist (Edward Norton) into the anti-establishment crusade of Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), who organizes the titular underground brawling network whose participants include the ill-fated Angel Face (Leto). On a deeper level, the story functions as a bloody, black-humored indictment of consumer culture, but more importantly, in the words of ReelView’s James Berardinelli, “Fight Club is a memorable and superior motion picture — a rare movie that does not abandon insight in its quest to jolt the viewer.”

Watch Trailer


Dallas Buyers Club (2013) 92%

Nothing screams “for your consideration” like an actor physically transforming himself for a role, to the point that it’s become something of a signal for filmgoers cynical enough to be suspicious of a star’s motivations when taking a part. But as often as not, that commitment pays off; just ask Jared Leto, whose rather frightening pre-shooting regimen included dropping more than 40 pounds to portray Rayon, the transgender HIV-positive woman whose story lends a poignant anchor to Jean-Marc Vallée‘s fact-based Dallas Buyers Club. Academy voters ultimately honored the movie with six nominations — three of which it won, including Best Actor for Matthew McConaughey and Best Supporting Actor for Leto. “Dallas Buyers Club represents the best of what independent film on a limited budget can achieve,” wrote Rex Reed for the New York Observer. “Powerful, enlightening and not to be missed.”

Watch Trailer

The GLAAD Media Awards, which “recognize and honor media for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community and the issues that affect their lives,” announced its final set of winners in New York on May 3, 2014 at the Waldorf Astoria. The first set of winners was announced at the Los Angeles ceremony on April 12, 2014 at the Beverly Hilton. Philomena took best Outstanding Film in wide-release film and, in the limited-release category, Concussions won. Outstanding Drama Series went to The Fosters (announced in Los Angeles) and Outstanding Comedy Series to Orange is the New Black. Bridegroom and Call Me Kuchu tied for Outstanding Documentary. The complete list of winners is here:



    Outstanding Reality Program

  • Big Freedia: Queen of Bounce
  • Cyndi Lauper: Still So Unusual
  • Dream School
  • Project Runway
  • Small Town Security

    Outstanding Daily Drama

  • Days of Our Lives

No one disputes the fact that this year’s Best Actress Oscar was Cate Blanchett’s to lose, or that the stunning performances by Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto were what powered Dallas Buyers Club into the Best Picture race, but let’s not pretend they’ve always been at the top of their game. With that in mind, here are some past failures that a few of this year’s Academy Award winners need to answer for:

This week on home video, we’ve got a couple of Oscar contenders in the mix, beginning with a biopic that’s got everyone buzzing about the Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor category. Then, there’s also a touching look at an artistic NYC couple that’s up for the Best Documentary award, Richard Curtis’s latest romance, a well-received indie drama, and a Thanksgiving-themed animated dud. Read on for the full list:



Dallas Buyers Club

92%

Jean Marc Vallée’s biopic has been racking up so many accolades that it officially needed a completely separate Wikipedia page just to list all of the awards it’s either won or been nominated for. Matthew McConaughey (he’s so hot right now) plays rough-and-tumble electrician Ron Woodroof, who learns in 1985 that he’s somehow contracted HIV. When he discovers that medication is near impossible to come by, he puts aside his homophobic tendencies and works together with a fellow HIV-positive patient (Jared Leto) to acquire experimental drugs for anyone who will pay. McConaughey and Leto have both already earned significant recognition for their work in Dallas Buyers Club; two of the film’s six Oscar nods belong to them, and while McConaughey is a strong contender for Best Actor, a lot of folks have all but gift-wrapped the Best Supporting Actor trophy for Jared Leto. This is a gripping, bittersweet character study that relies almost entirely on its performances, but boy do those performances shine.



About Time

69%

Need something a tad more on the sappy side than Dallas Buyers Club? Why not the latest directorial effort from Richard Curtis, the man who brought us Love Actually, Notting Hill, and Bridget Jones’s Diary? Domhnall Gleeson is Tim Lake, a young man who discovers on his 21st birthday that he can travel through time. When Tim meets and falls in love with Mary (Rachel McAdams), he attempts to use his power to woo her, but soon finds that time travel comes with unpredictable consequences. Most critics found About Time a fairly charming movie, which helped it to a 69% on the Tomatometer. Richard Curtis knows a thing or two about sentimental romances, so as long as you aren’t too tripped up by the minor sci-fi element, you’ll get what you came for.



Escape Plan

50%

If Escape Plan had come out during the late 1980s — or even the early 1990s — every male in the 18-45 demo would have lined up around the block to watch it. Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger teaming up at the height of their careers in a prison break movie? Fuhgeddaboudit. Unfortunately, it’s 2014 now, and this movie offered just a bit too little and came a tad too late. It’s a valiant attempt to mimic those thrills of yesteryear, and yeah, it’s fun to see them share this much screentime together, so at 49% on the Tomatometer, it got some brownie points for that. Lower your expectations from “Rocky meets The Terminator” to something like “Rocky IV meets The Running Man” and you’ll have some approximation of what its 49% Tomatometer score represents. We still kind of love Rocky IV and The Running Man, but you get what we mean.



Free Birds

20%

It’s been a while since an animated film had the misfortune of sporting the lowest Tomatometer of any movie hitting DVD in a given week, but today, Free Birds holds that honor. The film opened in early November last year, hoping to capitalize on the Thanksgiving time family market, but it just barely earned back its production budget. The film stars the voices of Owen Wilson and Woody Harrelson as a pair of turkeys who travel back in time in an effort to alter history and ensure the safety of all future turkeys. Throw in a love story, some hijinks, and a few nods to Back to the Future, and there you go. Despite a voice cast that also included Amy Poehler, Colm Meaney, Keith David, and George Takei, critics didn’t care much for the film, calling it an uninspired, sometimes offensive story with lackluster animation. At 18% on the Tomatometer, Free Birds is kind of a… Well, you know.



The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete

84%

The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete features folks like Jennifer Hudson, Anthony Mackie, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, and Jeffrey Wright, but the film belongs to Skylan Brooks and Ethan Dizon, the film’s titular young heroes. Mister (Brooks), a 14-year-old living in New York City, is trying to convince his deadbeat mother to get a job when the police come knocking and take her away. When his 9-year-old friend Pete (Dizon) finds himself in the same situation, the hungry pair spend their summer roaming the neighborhood in a search for food, trying to stay out of trouble and avoid child protective services. This coming of age drama is a bit different than anything director George Tillman Jr. (Notorious, Men of Honor) has done before, but thanks to a couple of strong, earnest performances from its leads and some sensitive storytelling, Mister & Pete has earned a 90% on the Tomatometer, making it his best-reviewed film.



Cutie and the Boxer

95%

One of this year’s Oscar nominees for Best Documentary, Cutie and the Boxer depicts the relationship between New York artist Ushio Shinohara and his wife Noriko. A native of Japan, Shinohara emigrated to the US in the late 1960s to take part in the NYC art scene, which is when he met Noriko, an art student 22 years his junior. Now 80, Shinohara attempts to reinvigorate his career with his boxing painting, but Noriko has developed a voice of her own in a series of drawings — “Cutie and Bullie” — depicting her life with her husband, and wants to be recognized as an artist in her own right. Critics roundly applauded Cutie and the Boxer as a fascinating portrait of a unique couple that poignantly explores both the nature of art and of love. Certified Fresh at 95%, this is a well crafted, complex documentary that’s equal parts touching and intriguing.

Also available this week:

  • Mother of George (92%), a drama about a Nigerian immigrant couple living in NYC who are having trouble trying to conceive.
  • The Banshee Chapter (76%), a thriller — purportedly based on real testimony and documents — about a woman who chases a government cover-up of chemical research when one of her friends goes missing.
  • Blood Brother (74%), a documentary about a young American man who stumbled upon a group of HIV-infected children while traveling and promptly decided to stay with them.
  • A Case of You (40%) starring Justin Long and Evan Rachel Wood in a rom-com about a struggling writer who must keep up a facade after wooing a girl with a falsified Facebook profile.
  • Romeo and Juliet (21%) starring Hailee Steinfeld and Douglas Booth in a modernized adaptation of the Shakespeare classic.
  • Baggage Claim (14%), starring Paula Patton and Taye Diggs in a comedy about a flight attendant who orchestrates “coincidental” meetings with exes in order to determine if one of them was Mr. Right.
  • The ten-part BBC miniseries The White Queen (75%), an historical drama centered on three women scheming to become the Queen of England.

The awards campaign for David O. Russell’s American Hustle can begin in earnest right here, with the filmmaker’s crime caper collecting the 2013 Best Picture vote from the venerable New York Film Critics Circle.

Hustle took the title over such heavyweight favorites as 12 Years a Slave, though Steve McQueen did manage a Best Director win for his harrowing slavery pic. Cate Blanchett surprised few with a win for Best Actress in Blue Jasmine, and Robert Redford collected a well-earned Best Actor accolade for his one-man-show, All is Lost.

Elsewhere, Jennifer Lawrence and Jared Leto earned Best Supporting Actor nods, while Miyazaki and Blue is the Warmest Color were among the other NYFCC winners.

Here’s the full list:

The 23rd Annual Gotham Independent Film Awards were celebrated on December 2nd at the Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. Inside Llewyn Davis was the big winner of the evening awarded as Best Feature of 2013. Fruitvale Station took home the two breakthrough categories with Michael B. Jordan receiving the Breakthrough Actor award and Ryan Coogler the Breakthrough Director. See the complete list of winners and nominees below.

Inaugurated in 1991, the Gotham Awards seek to honor the very best in independent filmmaking every year, including foreign films.


Matthew McConaughey has played a wide variety of characters over his career, and his resume includes a fair share of popular favorites: Dazed and Confused, Frailty, Killer Joe, Tropic Thunder and even a guest stint on the HBO television series Eastbound & Down. Recently, he’s earned a lot of praise for his performances in The Lincoln Lawyer, Magic Mike, and Mud. We’ll have to wait for Christmas to see him next in The Wolf of Wall Street, but right now, McConaughey’s impressive portrayal of real-life HIV-infected cowboy Ron Woodroof in Dallas Buyers Club is already stirring up a whirlwind of acclaim. In other words, we know what we like, but what movies make Matthew McConaughey tick? He indulges us now with his Five Favorite Films.

 


Hud (Martin Ritt, 1963; 79% Tomatometer)



Family, generations, hero worship, a classic American landscape and anti hero… Paul Newman, a lead with no arc. A bastard, an ass, a great character who never wavers in his ornery and despicable ways, yet I loved him. Great example of how brilliant drama can happen even if the lead character never changes. P.S. – Patricia Neal, “You want an orange? I’ll peel it for ya.” Wow.

Angel Heart (Alan Parker, 1987; 78% Tomatometer)



The thriller; superstitions, New Orleans, Mickey Rourke, a barefoot Lisa Bonet in soft white eyelet cotton dresses on sandy roads… The sex scene where the blood drips from the ceiling, intercut with the boy on the street tap dancing for change… Ceiling fans.

Adaptation (Spike Jonze, 2002; 91% Tomatometer)



The scene in the swamp at the end when the brothers talk about love and betrayal and he says, “It didn’t matter if she loved me. I loved her.” Poetry. A life lesson. Also, most effective car crash I’ve seen on film: jarring and lethal, it makes me feel like I’m the one getting hit every time I see it… Nicolas Cage acting with Nicolas Cage.

The Indian Runner (Sean Penn, 1991; 74% Tomatometer)



Brothers, family, blood, loyalty, and the thin line between civilization and human nature. Viggo Mortenson.

The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2012; 85% Tomatometer)



A fictional screenplay with fictional characters made so well that it felt like a biographical nonfiction drama, like a considerately staged documentary. Identity of place and people. I could smell and taste it.


A week before the Hemsworth brothers begin their double feature of November tentpoles, the sci-fi entry Ender’s Game opened atop the North American box office and was joined in the top five by fellow new releases Last Vegas and Free Birds, all of which posted moderate or respectable launches.

Debuting to an estimated $28M, the effects-driven futuristic action pic Ender’s Game landed in the number one spot with a performance that was reasonably good, but not especially impressive for an expensive production. Based on the best-selling novel, the PG-13 film averaged $8,218 from 3,407 locations including higher-priced IMAX and other large-format screens. Reviews were mixed for the Lionsgate release and the CinemaScore grade was a middling B+. Tapping into a built-in audience, not having any standout buzz, and facing the arrival of Thor: The Dark World next weekend, Game is not likely to last very long and should finish up with a front-loaded theatrical run.

Bad Grandpa enjoyed the best second weekend hold ever for a Jackass film dipping only 36% to an estimated $20.5M giving Paramount a healthy $62.1M in ten days. The low-cost $15M comedy should end its domestic run with about $110M making for yet another profitable installment for the eleven-year-old franchise. Fan feedback has been excellent.

The old timers comedy Last Vegas opened in third pace with an estimated $16.5M from 3,065 theaters for a respectable $5,390 average. Starring Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman, and Kevin Kline, the PG-13 film about a group of old friends reuniting for a bachelor party in Sin City played to a mature crowd as expected. Critics were not too impressed, but moviegoers came out for the CBS Films release for the starpower and premise.

Audience data showed that 53% were female and an understandably high 83% were 25 and older. With a promising A- CinemaScore grade, a much older target audience, and no major direct competition coming, Vegas should be able to hold up well throughout the November weeks ahead and reach a domestic gross that doubles the $28M production cost.

2013 has been a tough year for animated films – especially those that are not on the very top tier – and Free Birds was the latest to lack excitement with family audiences. The PG-rated turkey flick debuted to an estimated $16.2M from 3,736 theaters for a mild $4,336 average. Relativity had relatively clear sailing for its launch as the only other kidpic out there – Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 – was in its sixth weekend. But the target audience was not excited to spend top dollar for this toon and reviews were lousy.

No animated films open until Thanksgiving so the distributor is hoping that lack of competition will help in the days and weeks ahead. The A- CinemaScore indicates that customers were fairly pleased with their purchase. Even bigger players like DreamWorks, Fox, and Sony have struggled to make toons work this year.

Space juggernaut Gravity fell back to fifth place but still posted a solid frame grossing an estimated $13.1M making for the best fifth weekend gross for any film since The Avengers. Warner Bros. has banked a stunning $219.2M to date making it the highest-grossing non-franchise film of 2013, and number eight overall. The Bullock blockbuster also smashed the $200M international and $400M global marks this weekend. The $27.1M overseas weekend gross pushed the offshore cume to $207.5M with worldwide climbing up to $426.7M.

Captain Phillips, another star-driven survival thriller getting Oscar buzz, followed with an estimated $8.5M. Down only 27%, the Tom Hanks film stands at $82.6M to date.

Fox Searchlight gave another expansion to its awards hopeful 12 Years A Slave which widened from 123 to 410 theaters and more than doubled its weekend gross in the process. The acclaimed period drama took in an estimated $4.6M and posted another promising average with $11,220 putting it in good shape for the road ahead. Many prestige films stumble when expanding to this many markets but Slave is remaining a relevant and much-talked-about film bringing in new audiences thanks in part to stellar reviews. Cume is $8.8M and next weekend it expands again into roughly 1,000 locations.

Three C’s rounded out the top ten. Toon sequel Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 dropped 33% to an estimated $4.2M for a $106.2M cume for Sony. Horror flick Carrie grossed an estimated $3.4M, down 43%, giving Sony $32M to date. Fox’s crime drama The Counselor tumbled 59% in its sophomore round to an estimated $3.3M putting the total at just $13.6M.

Rachel McAdams saw lackluster results for her latest romance About Time which was given a limited release in only 175 locations this weekend by Universal. The R-rated time travel love story bowed to an estimated $1.1M for a mild average of $6,046 which does not bode well for next weekend’s nationwide expansion. Reviews have been mixed.

Generating plenty of must-see awards buzz – especially in the acting categories – was Dallas Buyers Club which delivered a superb platform launch over the weekend as the final release for the current incarnation of Focus Features. The Matthew McConaughey film bowed to an estimated $264,000 from only nine locations in New York, Los Angeles, and Toronto for a strong $29,333 average. The R-rated true story expands on Friday to a dozen new markets – including Dallas – and will be everywhere by November 22. Reviews were sensational and McConaughey is seen as a major contender for the Academy Award for Best Actor.

A week ahead of its domestic launch, the super hero tentpole Thor: The Dark World opened across much of the planet this weekend taking in a sensational $109.4M from 36 markets led by $13.4M in the U.K. The second Thor flick lands in over 3,800 North American theaters this Friday (with first shows beginning at 8:00pm on Thursday night) and has scared away all other new wide releases. China also opens next weekend so the global tally will soar by the end of next weekend.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $118.3M which was even with last year when Wreck-it Ralph opened at number one with $49M; but up 18% from 2011 when Puss in Boots stayed in the top spot with $33.1M in its second weekend.

Follow Gitesh on Twitter.

This week at the movies, we’ve got a space-warfare strategist (Ender’s Game, starring Asa Butterfield and Harrison Ford), time-travelling turkeys (Free Birds, with voice performances by Owen Wilson and Woody Harrelson), and a document leaker (Last Vegas, starring Michael Douglas and Robert De Niro). What do the critics have to say?



Ender’s Game

62%

Adapting a beloved novel to the big screen is often a dicey proposition. That said, critics feel that Ender’s Game does a pretty good job of bringing its source material to cinematic life, with strong performances and a thoughtful tone that helps to make up for occasional stretches of solemnity and dullness. Earth is under siege from alien invaders, and the fate of humanity rests on the shoulders of Ender (Asa Butterfield), a bullied teenager whose precocious gifts are cultivated in order to devise a strategy to defeat the enemy. The pundits say Ender’s Game isn’t always emotionally rousing, but it’s still a smart, visually exciting sci-fi film that should (mostly) please fans of Orson Scott Card’s book. (Watch our video interviews with Ford, Butterfield, Viola Davis, and Hailee Steinfeld.)



Free Birds

20%

The idea of an animated action comedy starring turkeys is pretty funny in theory. Unfortunately, critics say that in practice, Free Birds is thin stuff; with its slack pace and less-than-inspired story, this is one turkey toon that never takes flight. Pampered Reggie (voiced by Owen Wilson) and activist Jake (Woody Harrelson) team up to travel back in time to the first Thanksgiving in order to kill the annual tradition of eating turkeys before it starts. The pundits say little kids might enjoy Free Birds, but their parents are likely to find the animation underwhelming and the jokes a bit flat.



Last Vegas

46%

A lot of people go to Vegas in search of a wild, unpredictable good time. Unfortunately, critics say Last Vegas plays things way too safe; while the combined talents of Michael Douglas, Robert De Niro, Morgan Freeman, Kevin Kline, and Mary Steenburgen keep things amiably watchable, the film never ventures outside its comfort zone. Douglas plays a longtime bachelor who’s finally tying the knot, so he meets up with a group of longtime buddies in Sin City to celebrate; revelry and reflection ensue. The pundits say the cast of Last Vegas makes for good company, but there are few surprises to be found on this trip. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we count down Kline’s best-reviewed movies).

Also opening this week in limited release:

  • These Birds Walk, a documentary about a home for Pakistani street children, is at 100 percent.
  • The Pervert’s Guide To Ideology, a documentary in which philosopher Slavoj Zizek riffs on the subtexts undergirding a vast array of popular movies, is at 94 percent.
  • Dallas Buyers Club, starring Matthew McConaughey and Jared Leto in a drama about a man seeking treatment for HIV in the early days of the epidemic, is Certified Fresh at 94 percent.
  • Casting By, a doc about the world of Hollywood casting directors, is at 90 percent.
  • Belgian import The Broken Circle Breakdown, a drama that follows the highs and lows in the relationship between two bluegrass musicians, is at 83 percent.
  • Aftermath, a drama about two brothers who suffer repercussions from their community after digging into the town’s past, is at 75 percent.
  • In the Name Of…, a drama about a young priest who struggles with matters of the flesh while running a halfway house for troubled teens, is at 71 percent.
  • Man of Tai Chi, directed by and starring Keanu Reeves in a martial arts film about a young fighter who competes in an underground fight club, is at 71 percent.
  • Mr. Nobody, starring Jared Leto and Diane Kruger in a sci-fi drama about the repercussions of a child choosing which parent to live with, is at 71 percent.
  • About Time, starring Domhnall Gleeson and Rachel McAdams in a romantic comedy about a guy whose relationship with a beautiful woman is constantly stymied by time-travel problems, is at 65 percent.
  • Running From Crazy, a documentary about Mariel Hemingway and her attempts to come to terms wither famous family’s history, is at 44 percent.
  • Last Love, starring Michael Caine in a dramedy about the relationship between a lonely professor and a plucky young dancer, is at 40 percent
  • Big Sur, starring Kate Bosworth and Josh Lucas in an adaptation of Jack Kerouac’s novel, is at 38 percent.
  • Diana, starring Naomi Watts in a biopic of the Princess of Wales, is at nine percent.

Tag Cloud

natural history target spinoff olympics 20th Century Fox 79th Golden Globes Awards thriller A24 green book Apple CW Seed Musicals Starz Ellie Kemper superman SundanceTV boxoffice 2016 Disney Country Marvel Avengers war Mystery foreign indie documentaries hispanic heritage month toronto Tomatazos HBO wonder woman scary japanese Lucasfilm Ovation Universal Pictures basketball binge free movies Toys sequel rt archives marvel comics disaster 2018 45 RT History ABC godzilla Black History Month fresh Best and Worst 90s NBC Vudu Mudbound PBS TIFF hollywood chucky christmas movies Peacock space Family Western game show Chernobyl versus batman Tags: Comedy National Geographic Musical Hollywood Foreign Press Association BBC Red Carpet monster movies President feel good die hard laika stop motion Marvel Television American Society of Cinematographers Certified Fresh ghosts japan politics Nat Geo History Grammys Super Bowl halloween Interview biopic Rock kids criterion Year in Review zombies sag awards 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards nbcuniversal crossover OWN Netflix Classic Film Quiz mockumentary TCA Awards stoner docudrama 99% Holidays news canceled true crime DC Universe Stephen King Film directors serial killer dreamworks Spectrum Originals CBS All Access mcc australia Opinion based on movie movie YA Lionsgate Captain marvel canceled TV shows LGBTQ Cosplay cops Shondaland 2015 pirates of the caribbean Calendar Television Academy jamie lee curtis independent The Purge Reality Competition BBC One comic films renewed TV shows black comedy Rocky Food Network Writers Guild of America miniseries BAFTA Fall TV Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Neflix DC streaming service Comic-Con@Home 2021 1990s NYCC genre Pirates documentary sequels A&E Lifetime Christmas movies slasher jurassic park football Warner Bros. crime drama TLC Alien rotten Women's History Month cartoon superhero Cannes what to watch Walt Disney Pictures Broadway dark Turner sports Podcast trailers SXSW biography Instagram Live Trivia Oscars Comedy video comedies dramedy cancelled television travel aapi Martial Arts AMC Plus rom-coms comic books action-comedy Disney Channel supernatural TBS a nightmare on elm street Set visit telelvision king kong emmy awards Hulu diversity italian Showtime period drama kaiju slashers Action Holiday CBS heist movie Star Trek 73rd Emmy Awards facebook The Arrangement 24 frames Mindy Kaling OneApp Music VH1 BET Awards Marvel Studios art house Pixar anime Amazon Prime Video Amazon Studios Turner Classic Movies Drama hispanic Mary poppins streaming anthology 93rd Oscars twilight APB cancelled TV series LGBT comics comic book movies Columbia Pictures Emmy Nominations vs. NBA police drama GLAAD venice The Witch Pop fast and furious reboot zombie San Diego Comic-Con Cartoon Network 2021 prank blockbusters The Walt Disney Company latino Amazon vampires nature crime thriller Logo VOD El Rey royal family psychological thriller joker black Adult Swim SDCC book adaptation PlayStation Acorn TV children's TV rotten movies we love dragons 2019 spider-man Paramount Pacific Islander Legendary game of thrones FXX TV Land Nickelodeon gangster spider-verse Netflix Christmas movies young adult Lifetime french elevated horror FX dexter spanish language concert dceu Universal cults MSNBC spain Tarantino south america ITV YouTube golden globes USA golden globe awards Teen Tubi singing competition hidden camera award winner festival Black Mirror Pride Month 007 blockbuster streaming movies ABC Signature Rom-Com Superheroes casting Amazon Prime zero dark thirty Exclusive Video new star wars movies 2017 worst 4/20 Video Games Ghostbusters series social media television Tumblr Star Wars sopranos CMT TCA 2017 Character Guide ViacomCBS 71st Emmy Awards CNN dc Disney Plus The Academy FX on Hulu Fox Searchlight posters harry potter TCA Winter 2020 TV movies hist Heroines Travel Channel Animation Reality Fox News MTV teaser james bond cats DirecTV Baby Yoda halloween tv Fargo Freeform animated composers transformers Apple TV+ doctor who WarnerMedia Elton John revenge YouTube Red legend cooking parents comiccon spy thriller TruTV Pop TV Mary Poppins Returns Mary Tyler Moore Sundance Film Festival Schedule Song of Ice and Fire HBO Max leaderboard Paramount Plus mob movies Crunchyroll suspense new york deadpool Kids & Family USA Network Epix TV One Binge Guide X-Men robots Countdown comic book movie 2020 popular dogs Extras MCU aliens Funimation nfl women high school Winners Awards E3 richard e. Grant crime cancelled TV shows rt labs critics edition book tv talk ESPN Watching Series political drama Sci-Fi Disney+ Disney Plus TNT indiana jones scene in color cinemax archives international saw The Walking Dead TV romantic comedy First Look DGA reviews historical drama Infographic romance Awards Tour Arrowverse Discovery Channel Sony Pictures name the review discovery ratings Bravo spanish universal monsters Crackle king arthur medical drama marvel cinematic universe talk show classics trophy Creative Arts Emmys YouTube Premium Premiere Dates Trailer blaxploitation Valentine's Day Nominations See It Skip It Endgame obituary Summer 72 Emmy Awards Emmys mutant RT21 Comics on TV WGN festivals satire lord of the rings TCA Syfy mission: impossible psycho werewolf BBC America Hallmark Christmas movies Anna Paquin stand-up comedy scary movies Image Comics Esquire Dark Horse Comics Marathons Election Hallmark adventure sitcom cars critic resources GoT worst movies Photos Polls and Games know your critic Masterpiece new zealand Academy Awards debate live action Pet Sematary Comedy Central Disney streaming service theme song IFC Films child's play screen actors guild strong female leads Box Office Spike Chilling Adventures of Sabrina unscripted Sundance TV witnail cancelled Television Critics Association Winter TV Rocketman finale Sneak Peek all-time PaleyFest Brie Larson kong HFPA IFC Comic Book breaking bad Trophy Talk BET ABC Family DC Comics TV renewals Paramount Network best quibi Horror Spring TV HBO Go Wes Anderson franchise GIFs Christmas docuseries The CW E! remakes Thanksgiving asian-american FOX critics live event 21st Century Fox justice league Britbox razzies First Reviews technology New York Comic Con adenture science fiction screenings Tokyo Olympics AMC video on demand adaptation Apple TV Plus Fantasy scorecard Shudder TCM Sundance Now VICE IMDb TV Hear Us Out rt labs Biopics toy story Prime Video ID Superheroe boxing