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Action Reviews

Review: Legion

“Legion” is astronomically tiresome and teems with idiotic dialogue bluntly performed by a limited cast. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: The Spy Next Door

"The Spy Next Door" is dreary, by-the-numbers action comedy. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: The Book of Eli

The Hughes Brothers craft a compellingly abrasive tone of moral manipulation to embellish the traditional post-apocalyptic tale. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B-)
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Review: Sherlock Holmes

This reworked version of Sherlock Holmes goes far beyond pipe sucking and deerstalker hats. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B+)
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Review: Avatar

Despite teeming with fantastical sights and sounds, "Avatar" remains a leaden viewing experience. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: Ninja Assassin
Posted to: Action Reviews

"Ninja Assassin" trips over itself trying to establish something substantial out of a frivolous concept. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: 2012

"2012" is disturbingly repetitive, obnoxiously noisy, and almost pornographic in length. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Law Abiding Citizen

Despite thought-provoking material, "Law Abiding Citizen" is morphed into a contrived thriller. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C+)
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Review: Ong Bak 2: The Beginning
Posted to: Action Reviews

This unexpected prequel is an often exhilarating, but supremely baffling martial arts picture. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B)
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Review: Surrogates

Well-executed special effects, coupled with underwhelming plots and misguided performances, makes "Surrogates" an interesting failure. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: Inglourious Basterds
Posted to: Action Reviews

"Inglourious Basterds" skillfully rides the line between geekgasms and flamboyant historical pageantry. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A)
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Review: District 9

Despite astounding visual reach, "District 9" is riddled with inconsistencies and a confusing point of view. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B-)
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Review: G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra

"G.I. Joe" is the latest bloated float in director Stephen Sommerss sad parade of cinematic shame. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: G-Force

"G-Force" is a halfway interesting movie that doesnt trust itself enough to enjoy the wacky premise. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

The restraint Michael Bay showed with the original "Transformers" is replaced by excess and idiocy. (Grade: D)
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Review: The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3

Skip this wasted effort from ineffectual filmmaker Tony Scott. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: Land of the Lost

Surprisingly, Sleestaks and Will Ferrell do not result in comic gold. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: Fast & Furious

"Fast & Furious" is the best entry in the franchise. That's not saying much. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: Race to Witch Mountain

"Race to Witch Mountain is a a vibrant diversion, but lacks heart. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B-)
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Review: Watchmen

"Watchmen" may speak to fans of the original story, but the the film's execution is muddy and jarring for newcomers. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li
Posted to: Action Reviews

Poor execution turns the "Street Fighter" legacy into an insipid and joyless film. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: The Day the Earth Stood Still
Posted to: Action Reviews

"The Day the Earth Stood Still" is a grotesque creation that prefers noise to thought. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Punisher: War Zone

The depths of awful that "War Zone" sinks to are dumbfounding. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: F)
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Review: Transporter 3
Posted to: Action Reviews

In "Transporter 3" the thrill has been replaced by a joyless machine of violence. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Twilight

Alternating between embarrassingly overindulgent and outright boring "Twilight" is a poorly contained unintentional joke. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

The latest installment in "The Mummy" franchise features mindless action and insipid screenwriting. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D-)
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Review: The Dark Knight

"The Dark Knight" is a mesmerizing crime story that just happens to be a comic book film. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A)
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Review: Wanted

"Wanted" is an uneven, but rewarding rocket-powered ride of escapism. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B)
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Review: The Incredible Hulk

Despite disappointing special effects and lack of characterization, "Hulk" is a a persuasive, fist-pumping sequel. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B)
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Review: War, Inc.

"War Inc," is a mischievous political satire full of outrage, slapstick, and ultraviolence. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A-)
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Review: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

Indiana Jones embarks on an exquisitely crafted thrill ride that was worth the wait. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A)
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Review: The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian

"The Chronicles of Narnia" sequel lacks needed dimension and narrative. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C-)
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Review: Speed Racer

Despite stunning visual effects, "Speed Racer" is a joyless, over-plotted nostalgia machine. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Iron Man

"Iron Man" is a high-quality effective entry in the superhero genre. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B+)
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Review: Iron Man

Iron Man is a super hero movie. Review by Connie Wang. (Grade: A+)
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Review: Never Back Down

Mixed Martial Arts' cinematic debut is a laughably directed artistic travesty. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D-)
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Review: Doomsday

Writer/director Neil Marshall offers up a mess of lousy filmmaking and artistic bankruptcy. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: The Bank Job
Posted to: Action Reviews

A mix of brawn and historical record make for rollicking heist cinema. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B+)
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Review: 10,000 B.C.
Posted to: Action Reviews

Director Roland Emmerich offers little substance beyond special effects. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Jumper

Director Doug Liman chooses rapid sci-fi action over plot development, and the gamble works. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A-)
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Review: Rambo

Ruthless violence drives this sequel. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B+)
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Review: Alien vs. Predator: Requiem

A joyless, moronic sequel. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: F)
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Review: National Treasure: Book of Secrets

A "sequel" rehashing the original's story and locations. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Hitman
Posted to: Action Reviews

Poor acting, directing, and writing unite in this video game adaptation. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: Beowulf
Posted to: Action Reviews

Brilliant direction and technological innovation make for heart-pounding adventure. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B+)
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Review: The Kingdom

"The Kingdom" is nothing more than a puffed-up action flick wrapped in flimsy politics. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: The Invasion

This film's behind-the-scenes director switch leads to a jarring shift of pace. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A-)
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Review: Transformers
Posted to: Action Reviews

Michael Bay and "Transformers" mix unexpectedly well. Who knew? Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A-)
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Review: Live Free or Die Hard

John McClane deserves better than this. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer

"Rise of the Silver Surfer" isn't as bad as the first "Fantastic Four," but that's not saying much. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

"At World's End" is visually stunning, but a tangle of story threads makes it a chore to sit through. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C-)
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Review: Spider-Man 3

The essential joys of Spider-Man are all present, but a buffet of plots and villains pushes this sequel to its limits Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B)
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Review: Next

"Next" is an idiotic thriller, but its earnest desire to entertain is endearing. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B)
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Review: The Condemned
Posted to: Action Reviews

A violent film that lectures the audience about violence. Wow. Great idea. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: Hot Fuzz

"Hot Fuzz" is a unique blend of action-flick idolatry and parody. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A)
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Review: Grindhouse

Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez let their fan-boy flags fly in this roaring homage to B-films. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A)
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Review: 300

"300" is an overblown visual spectacle with little subtstance and even less justification for existence. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: 300
Posted to: Action Reviews

Impressive visuals can't stave off this film's underlying corniness. Review by Kuan-Lin Connie Wang (Grade: C+)
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Review: Ghost Rider

Nicolas Cage clearly enjoys himself, but "Ghost Rider" doesn't match its star's entertainment level. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C)
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Review: Smokin' Aces

A surprisingly complicated story lies beneath this film's visual trickery and ultra violence. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B+)
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Review: Apocalypto

Yet again, we're faced with a massive dose of Mel Gibson's ultra-violence. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Blood Diamond

Shunning subtlety, "Blood Diamond" rams its "message" down the audience's throat. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C+)
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Review: Deja Vu

Stuck between a thriller and a sci-fi film, "Deja Vu" never comes together. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C-)
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Review: Casino Royale
Posted to: Action Reviews

Character development and gritty emotions highlight this welcome reboot of the Bond franchise. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A-)
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Review: The Guardian

Despite a decent performance from Kevin Costner, "The Guardian" caves under the weight of its action/heroism cliches. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D+)
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Review: Fearless

Jet Li's elegant performance gives "Fearless" a potent mixture of wire-fu and surprising drama. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B+)
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Review: Crank
Posted to: Action Reviews

Essential elements, like plot and characters, are buried beneath this jacked-up film's jump cuts and hipster irony. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D-)
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Review: Miami Vice

Michael Mann delivers a vivid "Vice" update, but a disconnect between characters keeps the audience at arm's length. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B)
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Review: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

Self-awareness and high expectations suck the playfulness out of this "Pirates" sequel. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: C+)
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Review: Superman Returns

With the majestic "Superman Returns," director Bryan Singer has crafted one of the best films of the year. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A)
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Review: Waist Deep

This film aims for anti-hero revenge and gritty street violence. What it gets are unintentional laughs. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D-)
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Review: The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift

The third "Fast and Furious" film is better than the second one, but that's not saying much. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: D)
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Review: X-Men: The Last Stand

"Last Stand" works as an action flick, but hardcore "X-Men" fans might be disappointed. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: A-)
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Review: Poseidon
Posted to: Action Reviews

Eye-popping visuals ignite this remake, but the short running time leads to cringe-worthy characters. Review by Brian Orndorf. (Grade: B-)
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Review: Mission: Impossible III

Tom Cruise and J.J. Abrams revitalize the "Mission: Impossible" franchise with a rollicking action thriller. (Grade: A)
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