Philip De Semlyen


Philip De Semlyen
Philip De Semlyen's reviews only count toward the Tomatometer when published at the following Tomatometer-approved publication(s): Empire Magazine Time Out
Publications: Empire Magazine, Time Out

movie Reviews Only

T-Meter Title | Year Review
4/5 86% Old Boys (2018) This charmingly oddball rom-com exists somewhere between 'If....' and 'Rushmore' in the canon of schoolboy eccentricity. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Feb 21, 2019
2/5 59% Alita: Battle Angel (2019) It's a rare thing to say about a James Cameron project, but you come out feeling like you've seen it all before. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 31, 2019
3/5 89% The Kid Who Would Be King (2019) It falls short of enchanting but it's never less than fun and likable. Watch it through the eyes of your inner teenager and you'll have a blast. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 25, 2019
3/5 94% How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) The visual soars but the franchise's emotional heartbeat struggles to make itself heard over the din of subplots and the annoying banter of Hiccup's teen tribemates. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 25, 2019
4/5 86% Monsters and Men (2018) John David Washington's role is more muted than in 'BlacKkKlansman', but he shows tantalising glimpses of dad Denzel's effortless charisma. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 21, 2019
4/5 93% Stan & Ollie (2019) It's a love song played in a minor key, and it leaves an unexpectedly lingering impression. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2018
4/5 97% Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) By the time it's chucked a Spider-pig (yes, really), Banksy jokes and buckets of Day-glo-bathed spectacle at you, resistance will be futile. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 7, 2018
3/5 77% The Man from Mo'Wax (2018) A warts-and-all tales of hubris and heavyweight beats. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 6, 2018
4/5 88% Ralph Breaks the Internet (2018) It's not every animation that features an eBay-spoofing riff involving a corn chip shaped like Beyoncé. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 23, 2018
3/5 No Score Yet Only the band's confetti-strewn stadium gigs, seemingly choreographed by a drunk Italian wedding planner, are as irrepressible as Chris Martin. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 12, 2018
4/5 94% If Beale Street Could Talk (2019) Barry Jenkins channels all of James Baldwin's lyricism and anger into a story of love and injustice that burns with a gentle flame, occasionally blazing into a white heat. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 7, 2018
3/5 75% Bad Times at the El Royale (2018) As with 'The Cabin in the Woods', Drew Goddard has a blast toying with genre expectations, although here the payoff is a lot less satisfying. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Oct 10, 2018
4/5 84% The Captain (Der Hauptmann) (2018) You've heard of 'Stalag 17', now meet Stalag 666. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 20, 2018
3/5 80% 22 July (2018) '22 July' offers few surprises, and even fewer opportunities for Paul Greengrass to flex his filmmaking muscles. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 5, 2018
2/5 56% Sunset (Napszállta) (2018) The bustle and vibrancy of pre-Great War Budapest remain frustratingly out of focus throughout. After 140 minutes, your eyeballs will know the feeling. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 4, 2018
4/5 85% The Sisters Brothers (2018) You don't need a deep love of westerns to get a kick out of Jacques Audiard's wry, surprising, and often plain hilarious frontier story. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 2, 2018
3/5 63% Peterloo (2019) The authenticity is immersive, even if the historical exposition occasionally feels like prep for an exam no one's warned you about. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Sep 1, 2018
4/5 91% The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018) Richly entertaining and blackly funny but told with sincerity and heart, the half-dozen Western tales packed into The Ballad of Buster Scruggs show the Coen brothers loading up their six-shooter and firing barely a blank. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 31, 2018
5/5 93% Cold War (Zimna wojna) (2018) One of the most colourful things you'll ever see in black and white. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 28, 2018
4/5 92% Searching (2018) Strip away the tech trappings and you'll find the same propulsive joys that powered '90s thrillers like 'Presumed Innocent' and 'The Fugitive'. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 22, 2018
4/5 96% BlacKkKlansman (2018) Veering from a blaxploitation spoof to an undercover thriller and ending with a no-punches-pulled real-life coda, BlacKkKlansman is riotously fun one minute, savagely biting the next. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Aug 10, 2018
2/5 45% Marrowbone (2018) Sergio G. Sánchez struggles to locate the frights, with underwritten characters draining his shocks of their emotional payoff. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 18, 2018
4/5 88% Whitney (2018) You don't have to be a fan of Whitney Houston's music to love director Kevin Macdonald's sharp-edged, revelatory and seriously emotional documentary about her life. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jul 2, 2018
4/5 93% The Endless (2018) This impressive low-budget indie weaves a genre-defying tapestry of weirdness, atmospherics and cultish horrors across a dusty US setting. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 28, 2018
4/5 100% Leave No Trace (2018) Unlike Sean Penn's 'Into the Wild', which also explores the quiet radicalism of disappearing off the grid, there's no big emotional swells here. 'Leave No Trace' is a more hushed, contemplative movie. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 28, 2018
3/5 48% Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (2018) This fun, pacy addition to the dino disaster franchise doesn't do much that's particularly new -- though what it does, it does with a fair whack of panache. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jun 5, 2018
4/5 95% A Cambodian Spring (2018) For all its sombre revelations, 'A Cambodian Spring' exudes a powerful sense of possibility. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 25, 2018
5/5 95% The Breadwinner (2017) This is a day-to-day survival story that stirs the heart and fires the imagination. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 25, 2018
2/5 60% The House That Jack Built (2018) An empty provocation, The House That Jack Built aims for profundity but achieves only mild queasiness. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 25, 2018
4/5 79% Dogman (2019) The overall feel is of the kind of Aesop's fable Scorsese would tell his kids. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 25, 2018
3/5 70% Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) Solo is at its best when it's uncoupled from all that heavy lifting, just crammed in a cockpit with its likeable cast and shooting for the stars. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 25, 2018
4/5 92% Beast (2018) Immaculately composed yet skittish, edgy and surprising, this impressive debut by writer-director Michael Pearce emanates a chill that will have you hugging your sides. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2018
3/5 68% On Chesil Beach (2018) It's not a bad movie by any stretch, but it strains to turn a serious and introspective story into something cinematic. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 17, 2018
2/5 83% Deadpool 2 (2018) It's a long movie and when its star isn't on screen and cracking wise, the boundary-pushing shocks and endless self-references wear thin. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted May 15, 2018
4/5 94% Custody (Jusqu'à la garde) (2018) A father-son drama for anyone who finds There Will Be Blood too cosy in its depiction of paternal love. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 10, 2018
4/5 83% Ghost Stories (2018) This triptych of horror tales is presided over with assurance and some seriously mordant wit by Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Apr 6, 2018
4/5 82% Journeyman (2017) Journeyman is a gentler human drama than Considine's terrific but tough directorial debut 'Tyrannosaur' but equally emotional. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 26, 2018
3/5 72% Ready Player One (2018) You're left with the overriding sensation of a master playing someone else's greatest hits. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 22, 2018
2/5 39% Mary Magdalene (2018) It ripples with interesting ideas, but the overall effect is glassy and inert, with Rooney Mara's Mary an oddly elusive presence in the film that carries her name. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 8, 2018
4/5 95% Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story (2017) A Google animator puts the mystery of Hedy Lamarr best: 'She's a perfect underdog, crime-fighter-by-night story.' Here she is, unmasked at last. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Mar 5, 2018
4/5 94% A Fantastic Woman (Una mujer fantástica) (2018) A cry for compassion that marries the fierce conviction of Boys Don't Cry with the defiant self-expression of a Pedro Almodóvar drama. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 30, 2018
3/5 81% Early Man (2018) It seems a strange thing to say about a film featuring a giant man-eating mallard, but a bit more eccentricity wouldn't have gone amiss. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 19, 2018
4/5 84% The Final Year (2018) It's a blur of airport runways, limos and government buildings that feels like the midway point between 'The West Wing' and 'Fast & Furious'. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 15, 2018
3/5 80% Walk With Me (2017) If it came in pill form, you could take two to recover from a Michael Bay movie. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Jan 3, 2018
3/5 56% The Greatest Showman (2017) An old-fashioned musical with a none-more-zeitgeisty songsheet, it may not be a flawless piece of storytelling, but it's a pretty decent show. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 21, 2017
3/5 65% Shot Caller (2017) If you imagine Andy Dufresne embarking on a hyper-violent gangland crime spree, you've got the premise of this thriller about the corrosive power of prison. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 13, 2017
4/5 85% Blade of the Immortal (Mugen no jûnin) (2017) One of the few directors who can play a multi-sword evisceration for laughs, Miike has served up another frenetic joy. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Dec 5, 2017
2/5 80% Love, Cecil (2018) This glossy doc about Cecil Beaton plumbs the shallows of the famous stylist, royal photographer and self-professed Edwardian dandy. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 29, 2017
4/5 97% Coco (2017) Effortlessly gliding between kid-friendly spectacle and heart-tugging emotion by way of surrealist touches and a hilariously specific recurring joke about Frida Kahlo's unibrow, Coco is a goofy joy from start to finish. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2017
3/5 88% Brakes (2016) Full of wry observations on the way Londoners connect (and disconnect), 'Brakes' could be the perfect final date movie. - Time Out EDIT
Read More | Posted Nov 20, 2017