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A.A. Dowd

A.A. Dowd


A.A. Dowd, or Alex to his friends, is a writer and editor based in Chicago. He has held staff positions at The A.V. Club and Time Out Chicago, and is a member of the National Society of Film Critics.

Daisy Edgar-Jones, Anthony Ramos, and Glen Powell look out an open doorway in fear in Twisters.

Twisters? Longlegs? Deadpool? The ’90s are back, baby!

From the blockbuster sequel Twisters to the return of Deadpool and the X-Men, 2024 is already looking a lot like the 1990s.
A man points a gun in True Lies.

30 years ago, this action movie changed Hollywood forever. But was it for better or worse?

In 1994, a popular action movie starring one of the biggest stars changed Hollywood forever. 30 years later, Digital Trends asks if it was for better or worse.
Maika Monroe stares in fright in front of a bloody wall in a still from the movie Longlegs

Longlegs review: A spooky slideshow in search of a movie

The new horror movie Longlegs, starring Nicolas Cage as a serial killer, is arrestingly stylish, but lacks the deeper terror of its influences.
Two men look fearful in Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

This unforgettable film might just be the best sci-fi movie ever made. Here’s why

This great remake of a sci-fi classic has lost none of its nightmarish, paranoid power. Find out what it is and why it's more timely than ever.
Kevin Costner stares with cowboy flintiness in a still from Horizon: An American Saga—Chapter 1

Horizon: An American Saga – Chapter 1 review: Costner’s Western is an epic bore

The first installment of Kevin Costner's multipart Western epic Horizon: An American Saga plays like the tedious pilot of a miniseries you wouldn't finish.
Two men talk on a bus in Speed.

This 1994 film is one of the best action movies ever made. Here’s why it still holds up

This 1994 action movie hasn't aged a bit, and is more exciting than the latest John Wick or Bad Boys sequel. Find out what it is and why you should watch it.
A bearded man looks ahead in Furiosa.

Post-Avengers: Endgame, the MCU’s biggest stars have gone gloriously bad

With Furiosa, Chris Hemsworth joins a growing list of MCU stars like Robert Downey Jr. and Mark Ruffalo who have been rejuvenated by standout villainous roles.
A man and a woman stand in a gun range in Hit Man.

Hit Man review: At last, the star vehicle Glen Powell deserves

Anyone but You and Top Gun: Maverick star Glen Powell reunites with Richard Linklater for Hit Man, an eccentric comedy on Netflix that proves he's a star.
Furiosa aims her rifle in "Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga."

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga review: a thrilling new trip down Fury Road

George Miller takes Mad Max out of Mad Max, but there are thrills aplenty in his astonishing spinoff prequel Furiosa.
An orangutan, a chimp, and a human brace for battle in a still from "Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes."

Are the new Planet of the Apes movies going anywhere?

The new Planet of the Apes franchise has craft and soul to spare, but it lacks direction — the sense that it's building to anything.
Ian Foreman watches TV in a still in I Saw the TV Glow.

2024’s weirdest movie is a haunted flashback for the Nickelodeon generation

Jane Schoenbrun's spooky A24 indie I Saw the TV Glow captures a precise moment in American culture — the last gasp of analog fandom before the internet age.
A man walks into a simulation in The Thirteenth Floor.

25 years ago, The Matrix led a mini movement of sci-fi simulation thrillers

From The Matrix to eXistenZ to The Thirteenth Floor, 1999 was an unusually robust year for sci-fi movies that put the world inside a computer.
An alien egg cracks open with the tagline "In space no one can hear you scream" underneath in the Alien movie poster.

Does the sci-fi classic Alien have the best movie marketing campaign ever?

With Ridley Scott's 1979 sci-fi masterpiece Alien back in theaters, let's revisit its iconic tagline, poster, and trailer.
Chris Evans and Scarlett Johansson strike a hero pose in a still from Captain America: The Winter Soldier

The best Marvel movie just turned 10 this year. Here’s why it’s still a blast to watch

There are funnier and more inventive entries in the MCU, but Captain America: The Winter Soldier is still the platonic ideal of a Marvel movie.
A woman is probed by a machine in The Beast.

The Beast review: a gonzo sci-fi movie with a touch of David Lynch

David Lynch meets Cloud Atlas meets Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind in the ambitious sci-fi whatsit The Beast, starring Dune 2 actress Léa Seydoux.
A man looks away from 2 cops in Ripley.

Ripley review: Netflix’s terrifically tense thriller

Originally developed for Showtime, Ripley, Netflix's beautifully shot adaptation of The Talented Mr. Ripley, features a brilliant performance by Andrew Scott.
Franck Gastambide aims a gun out a truck window in a still from The Wages of Fear

Netflix just remade one of the best thrillers of all time. Is it worth watching?

Netflix just quietly premiered a remake of one of the best thrillers ever made. But is this latest version worth watching or just another disappointing retread?
Godzilla and Kong race into battle in a still from Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire

Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire review: a very flimsy monster mash

In Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire, Godzilla joins forces with King Kong for a Hollywood monster movie without a fraction of the power of Godzilla Minus One.
David Dastmalchian and Laura Gordon speak to a possessed Ingrid Torelli on the set of a talk show in a still from "Late Night with the Devil."

Late Night with the Devil review: a fun talk-show Exorcist

David Dastmalchian plays a talk show host summoning evil on live TV in the entertaining but rarely scary found-footage horror movie, Late Night with the Devil.
Jake Gyllenhaal pushes an identical Jake Gyllenhaal in a still from the movie Enemy

Before Dune: Part Two, Denis Villeneuve made 2 unnerving Jake Gyllenhaal thrillers

Premiering in the fall of 2013, two Jake Gyllenhaal movies, Prisoners and Enemy, set director Denis Villeneuve on the path to Arrival, Dune, and Dune: Part Two.
Ryan Gosling and Margot Robbie as Barbie and Ken singing in a car in Barbie.

All the 2024 Best Picture Oscar nominees, ranked

From Barbenheimer to Poor Things, these are the 2024 nominees for Best Picture, ranked from worst to best.
Timothée Chalamet gazes upon a distant explosion in a still from "Dune: Part Two."

Dune: Part Two review: a beautifully numbing sci-fi epic

Denis Villeneuve completes his two-part adaptation of Frank Herbert's classic novel with Dune: Part Two, another amazing looking, but plodding sci-fi epic.
A woman holds a birthday cake in Birth.

You probably haven’t seen this underrated 2004 thriller. Here’s why you should watch it now

Nicole Kidman plays a woman with a very strange dilemma in an oddball 2004 mystery that deserves a second look.
John David Washington wears a mask in a still from Tenet

Is Christopher Nolan’s Tenet the misunderstood masterpiece some claim it to be?

Christopher Nolan's only box-office disappointment, Tenet, returns to IMAX theaters this weekend. Is it the misunderstood masterpiece some fans claim it to be?
Margaret Qualley and Geraldine Viswanathan peer around a corner in a still from Drive Away Dolls

Drive-Away Dolls review: a wacky Coens caper, minus a Coen

Margaret Qualley and Geraldine Viswanathan take a madcap road trip in Drive-Away Dolls , the first comedy Ethan Coen has made without his brother, Joel.
Ezekiel stands in front of a billboard in Madame Web.

With Madame Web bombing, it’s time to ask: Who wants a Spider-Verse without Spider-Man?

Madame Web is the latest Sony superhero movie to flop — and further proof that building a Spider-Movie movie universe without Spider-Man was a mistake.
4 women stand on a city street in Madame Web.

Madame Web review: the worst movie of 2024 so far

Dakota Johnson does not say your favorite line in the remarkably lousy Spider-Man offshoot Madame Web, which should be avoided at all costs.
A woman ignites a lighter in The Royal Hotel.

This 2023 thriller has been criminally overlooked. Here’s why you need to watch it in 2024

Ignored by audiences and critics, this underrated 2023 thriller set in an Australian dive bar from Hell is better than most of this year's Oscar nominees.
Godzilla destroys the city in a wide shot still from Godzilla Minus One

At 70, is Godzilla more popular (and better) than ever?

As other franchises falter, the radioactive reptile enjoys new popularity, thanks to Godzilla Minus One and his forthcoming reunion with King Kong.
Jason Statham broods in a still from The Beekeeper

The Beekeeper review: an awful, hilarious Jason Statham action movie

Jason Statham is hilariously nonchalant in the dreadful but sometimes funny John Wick wannabe The Beekeeper.
Enzo Vogrincic Roldán sits in the snow in a still from Society of the Snow

Society of the Snow review: Alive gets a dreary Netflix makeover

Though less hokey than the 1993 film Alive, this new Netflix movie similarly fails to get big drama out of the harrowing true of the Andes flight disaster.
Vin Diesel holds a car door like a shield in a still from Fast X

Are movie franchises dead, or are we just seeing the start of new ones?

Some of Hollywood's biggest franchises like Indiana Jones, Transformers, DC, and Marvel flopped this year, but are new ones coming to take their place?
Sofia Boutella strikes a cool pose with a stick against a pretty landscape in a still from Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire.

Rebel Moon review: A glum Star Wars ripoff from Zack Snyder

Zack Snyder realizes his vision of 'Seven Samurai with Jedis' with Rebel Moon – Part One: A Child of Fire, a glum, unsatisfying sci-fi epic on Netflix.
Ghostface brandishes a knife in a still from Scream VI

The 10 most underrated movies of 2023, ranked

From the latest Exorcist and Scream sequels to the blockbuster flop The Creator, these were the 2023 movies that deserved a better reception than they got.