films seen
19
average score
2.07*
nationality
USA - 71 years old
status
Alive and kicking
more info

A commercial chameleon who directed a fair amount of famous and well-liked films, but failed to establish a signature style throughout his career. Even so it pays to dig through his vast oeuvre, if only to keep tabs on popular cinema.

Solid pieces

Welcome to Marwen

2018 / 116m - USA
Drama, War
3.5*/5.0*
Welcome to Marwen poster

I'm not a huge Zemeckis fan, but this film was pretty solid. I was pleasantly surprised by the wit and audacity of the animation sequences, which create a nice contrast with the drama (based on a true story) that forms the heart of the film. It gets pretty sentimental, net never quite crossed the line for me.

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After being beaten by five men and left for dead on the road, Mark lost all his personal memories. He escapes into a fictional world he built himself, a small Belgian town during WWII, inhabited by dolls who reference people in the real world. When a new neighbor moves in across the road, Mark is forced to finally face his fears.

Carell and the rest of the live-action cast are nice enough, but it's the animation sequences that really bring this film to life. The CG isn't flawless but works wonders for the doll-like figures, while the over-the-top action and machismo are cheeky enough to make it works even in this age. A fun film, I even appreciated the little Back to the Future reference.

Forrest Gump

1994 / 142m - USA
Drama, Romance
3.5*/5.0*
Forrest Gump poster

The inoffensive

A Christmas Carol

2009 / 96m - USA
Fantasy, Animation
3.0*/5.0*
A Christmas Carol poster

Beowulf

2007 / 115m - USA
Fantasy, Adventure, Animation
3.0*/5.0*
Beowulf poster

I Wanna Hold Your Hand

1978 / 104m - USA
Comedy, Music
3.0*/5.0*
I Wanna Hold Your Hand poster

Surprisingly fun and apt comedy that smartly parodizes Beatles-mania, without being too snarky. The performances are great, there are some solid gags and the pacing never slows down. It's not a masterpiece, far from it, but it's definitely one of Zemeckis' better films and a remarkably upbeat 70s flick. Good fun, even if you don't particularly like the Beatles.

Worthy but flawed

Allied

2016 / 124m - UK
Romance, Thriller, War
2.5*/5.0*
Allied poster

A romantic espionage thriller set during WWII. While Zemeckis tries his best to turn it into a classy affair, he isn't quite the man for the job. While there's very little wrong with this film, it still ends up rather plain and forgettable. It's all so predicable and safe that you start to wonder why they even bothered with this one.

Flight

2012 / 138m - USA
Drama, Thriller
2.5*/5.0*
Flight poster

A film that starts with a lot of action, but quickly settles down to become an addication drama with a little courtroom thrown in for good measure. Washington and Reilly do good work, but Zemeckis isn't subtle enough to make a drama like this really stand out. Borderline acceptable.

The Polar Express

2004 / 100m - USA
Fantasy, Adventure, Animation
2.5*/5.0*
The Polar Express poster

Back to the Future

1985 / 116m - USA
Comedy, Sci-fi, Adventure
2.5*/5.0*
Back to the Future poster

Dubious filler

The Witches

2020 / 106m - USA
Fantasy
2.0*/5.0*
The Witches poster

Zemeckis remaking Roald Dahl's The Witches did sound like a pretty nice idea. Zemeckis has a decent track record of modernizing old classics and with proper backing of guys like Del Toro and CuarĂ³n this was a project with quite a bit of potential. The budget was there too, sadly the results isn't all that.

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The film doesn't change too much about the original story except the setting. A young boy gets mixed up in the affairs of a coven of witches, who are planning to get rid of all the children by giving them poisoned candy. Together with his grandmother and two friends the boy devises a counter plan to stop the witches in their tracks.

The CG is quite poor, Hathaway's performance is absolutely dreadful, Chris Rock's voice-over should've been scrapped and the film simply lacks that juicy, slightly overstated atmosphere that is so typical for Dahl's work. The film at least looks nice and colorful, but this should've been so much better. Disappointing.

Romancing the Stone

1984 / 106m - USA
Comedy, Action, Adventure
2.0*/5.0*
Romancing the Stone poster

Plain forgettable

Pinocchio

2022 / 111m - USA
Adventure
1.5*/5.0*
Pinocchio poster

A pointless "live-action" remake of Disney's Pinocchio. Most of the film is CG though, even when you have some human actors running across the screen from time to time. Zemeckis remained close to Disney's original cartoon, which means it's a very safe take on the story, with some familiar songs thrown in for good measure.

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The plot should be familiar to most, unless you're either very young or a complete fairy tale hater. Geppetto carves a wooden boy and wishes for it to become human. A fairy grants him his wish, but before Pinocchio can become a true human, he'll have to prove his worth. Together with Jiminy Cricket, he starts his big adventure.

In the end, this felt like a very lazy remake. Zemeckis doesn't even make an effort to create something unique or special. The accents were horrible, the actors did poor jobs, the CG was lackluster and the music was bland. At least we have del Toro's take on Pinocchio to look forward to, no doubt it'll be at least twice as interesting as this one.

The Walk

2015 / 123m - USA
Drama, Thriller, Adventure
1.5*/5.0*
The Walk poster

Cast Away

2000 / 143m - USA
Adventure
1.5*/5.0*
Cast Away poster

What Lies Beneath

2000 / 130m - USA
Horror, Mystery
1.5*/5.0*
What Lies Beneath poster

Big nopes

Back to the Future Part III

1990 / 118m - USA
Comedy, Sci-fi, Adventure
1.0*/5.0*
Back to the Future Part III poster

Back to the Future Part II

1989 / 108m - USA
Comedy, Sci-fi, Adventure
1.0*/5.0*
Back to the Future Part II poster

Who Framed Roger Rabbit

1988 / 104m - USA
Comedy, Crime, Animation
1.0*/5.0*
Who Framed Roger Rabbit poster

Irritation overload

Contact

1997 / 150m - USA
Sci-fi, Mystery
0.5*/5.0*
Contact poster