Sam Eifling



“The Other Woman”

“The Other Woman”

Someday, sooner than its producers would like, “The Other Woman” will appear on video and on Netflix, where some clerk will dutifully file it under the romantic comedy section, when it is in fact neither. But wait, you say. It has Cameron Diaz and Leslie Mann and Kate Upton laughing on its poster — why, […]

“Bears”

“Bears”

No one who sees “Bears,” Disneynature’s latest horror film disguised as a wilderness documentary, will ever want to be a bear. Bears spend their entire day — yea, their entire year — simply trying not to starve, or to become a meal for another animal (a larger, hungrier bear, quite likely). They wake up encased […]

“The Raid 2″

“The Raid 2″

“The Raid 2,” a martial arts epic so ultraviolent and spectacular it arrives almost as a surprise in American theaters, will surprise no one who saw its predecessor, “The Raid: Redemption,” with its audacity and ferocity. However, if you missed out on everyone’s favorite Indonesian shoot-‘em-up cop classic in 2011, then you might need a […]

“Muppets Most Wanted”

“Muppets Most Wanted”

“Muppets Most Wanted” begins with a song-and-dance number spoofing the fact the Muppets are making another sequel and hinting on the sly that “the sequel’s never quite as good.” Alas, despite several shameless laughs and a terrific villain Muppet (a sinister Kermit doppelganger named Constantine) it doesn’t quite have the heart of 2011’s “The Muppets,” […]

“Need for Speed”

“Need for Speed”

While “Need for Speed” carries a generic name apparently dreamt up by a 12-year-old, it turns out it was merely a title meant for 12-year-olds. “The Need for Speed” is a videogame first released in 1994 on PC and, nostalgia alert, the 3DO and Sega Saturn. The series has spawned 19 more iterations since, with […]

“300: Rise of an Empire”

“300: Rise of an Empire”

The phrase sword-and-sandal used to evoke vaguely homoerotic visions of old-timey masculinity, back when Spartacus roamed the screen. (“Joey, do you like movies about gladiators?” Capt. Oveur asked in “Airplane,” and a knowing nation chortled.) Whereas the high-aspiring (and eventual Best Picture winner) “Gladiator” didn’t leer at its players’ bodies to any gratuitous degree, its […]

“Non-Stop”

“Non-Stop”

It took a dozen years, but someone has finally made an honest run at a post-9/11 hijacking movie in the form of “Non-Stop,” Liam Neeson’s latest thriller in which he is both cat and mouse. An air marshal with a fear of flying, he finds himself at some personal low point, steeling himself with booze […]

“Pompeii”

“Pompeii”

Not since “Melancholia” obliterated the entire Earth in its opening stanza has a film been so upfront about its designs on extermination as “Pompeii.” Every schoolkid knows the Italian coastal berg that Vesuvius croaked under 20 feet of hot ash almost 2,000 years ago. It may be the most famous ghost town in the world, […]

“RoboCop”

“RoboCop”

The original “RoboCop” — and here we must underscore the word “original” — worked, as so many unlikely classics do, on a number of levels. Let’s reduce that number to two, for easy contrast with its flaccid offspring, also named “Robocop” but unworthy of the mantle. One: The 1987 “RoboCop” was a violent, vulgar, inventive, […]

“The Lego Movie”

“The Lego Movie”

“The Lego Movie” is one of the funniest, most madcap animated movies of recent memory, and perhaps ever. It’s like pouring Mentos and Diet Coke straight into your brainpan while doing backflips on a trampoline and staring through a kaleidoscope. It’s like being submerged in candy and tickled by seraphim. “The Lego Movie” is like […]