Sam Eifling



“Let’s Be Cops”

“Let’s Be Cops”

Maybe not since the Tim Allen romp “Big Trouble” was slated to open the weekend after 9/11 has a big-studio picture found worse timing in the news cycle than “Let’s Be Cops.” The new doofus-buddy comedy about a couple of 30ish washouts in Los Angeles getting their jollies dressing in LAPD uniforms landed in theaters […]

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”

The new “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” — distinguished here from the 1990 classic of the same title, and oh but how the odometer does spin — is borderline watchable, despite what every bone in your body would tell you to expect. Michael Bay, one of the movie’s producers, has made a recent career of exhuming […]

“Guardians of the Galaxy”

“Guardians of the Galaxy”

“Guardians of the Galaxy,” the funniest and most satisfying of the 10 movies so far in the Marvel cinematic universe, oozes with the ingredients that draw people to theaters, while forsaking many of the missteps that plague lesser efforts. Instead of making a film for average children and dim adults, here we have one for […]

“Hercules”

“Hercules”

The myth of Hercules is one of those fantastic jellybeans of world literature, a nasty, brutish, savage story full of monsters and gods and heroes, a rival to any of the cracking yarns from the Bible but without any hint of moral nourishment to weigh it down. In Greek tradition, the king of the gods, […]

“The Purge 2: Anarchy”

“The Purge 2: Anarchy”

The surprise 20-to-1 earnings-to-budget ratio of a little dystopian murderfest called “The Purge” last year made its spawn, “The Purge 2: Anarchy,” a foregone conclusion. What wasn’t inevitable was that the sequel would be a stronger movie than the original. Rather than pinning us inside a single McMansion during America’s newest/worst holiday, the annual 12 […]

“Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”

“Dawn of the Planet of the Apes”

The reaction in the past week to “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” has been equal parts encouraging and depressing. Happily, the movie’s actually pretty good, and audiences, apparently starved for anything that doesn’t salute their intelligence with both middle fingers, turned out in droves. The damn dirty apes blew it up at the […]

“Tammy”

“Tammy”

Rarely do we get the chance in mainstream multiplex fare to ask the question, so let’s do so here. What name would we give an inverted inverts Bechdel Test? That shorthand for the pervasive masculine default in most movies looks for three criteria. First, a movie must have at least two female characters. Second, they […]

“Transformers: Age of Extinction”

“Transformers: Age of Extinction”

“Transformers: Age of Extinction” is not the title of a movie so much as the tag of a natural disaster we knew was coming, sort of like the schedule of names (Arthur, Bertha, Cristobal, Dolly, etc., in 2014) we prepare for hurricane season. The next cacophonous, disorienting, exhausting installment in this series will be the […]

“22 Jump Street”

“22 Jump Street”

It’s probably impossible for an English speaker between the ages of 4 and 87 to watch “22 Jump Street” without laughing at some damn thing or other. The sequel to the 2012 quasi-adaptation of late-’80s cop drama “21 Jump Street” sprays jokes across a wider range of tastes than maybe any comedy you’ve seen. For […]

“Edge of Tomorrow”

“Edge of Tomorrow”

The life of a soldier named Cage in “Edge of Tomorrow” plays like a smudged CD, blatting the same note on repeat ad infinitum. An ad guy turned media spinmeister after an overwhelming alien invasion, the officer finds himself labeled a deserter and thrown into the infantry of a futuristic D-Day, clad in a tanklike […]