Scott Tobias

Scott Tobias is the film editor of The A.V. Club, the arts and entertainment section of The Onion, where he's worked as a staff writer for over a decade. His reviews have also appeared in Time Out New York, City Pages, The Village Voice, The Nashville Scene, and The Hollywood Reporter. Along with other members of the A.V. Club staff, he co-authored the 2002 interview anthology The Tenacity Of the Cockroach and the new book Inventory, a collection of pop-culture lists.

Though Tobias received a formal education at the University Of Georgia and the University Of Miami, his film education was mostly extracurricular. As a child, he would draw pictures on strips of construction paper and run them through the slats on the saloon doors separating the dining room from the kitchen. As an undergraduate, he would rearrange his class schedule in order to spend long afternoons watching classic films on the 7th floor of the UGA library. He cut his teeth writing review for student newspapers (first review: a pan of the Burt Reynolds comedy Cop and a Half) and started freelancing for the A.V. Club in early 1999.

Tobias currently resides in Chicago, where he shares a too-small apartment with his wife, his daughter, two warring cats and the pug who agitates them.

Pages

Movie Reviews
2:07 pm
Fri November 16, 2012

Indie Queen Posey Reigns Over Familiar Territory

Posey has been making audiences laugh since the '90s in cult classics like Dazed and Confused and Best in Show.
IFC Films

Originally published on Thu November 15, 2012 4:03 pm

When Parker Posey was crowned "queen of the indies" in the mid-to-late '90s, the title referred to her Sundance-dominating ubiquity. But it could just as well have applied to the Parker Posey type — powerful and wonderfully imperious, with a habit of cutting her underlings down to size.

That's the Posey who turns up in Michael Walker's tense comedy Price Check, where she plays a relentless corporate climber who shakes up a sleepy regional office. She inspires. She terrorizes. Whatever it takes to get the job done.

Read more
Movie Reviews
4:03 pm
Thu November 1, 2012

'Ralph': An 8-Bit Hero With Plenty Of Heart

Wreck-It Ralph (John C. Reilly) grows tired of being overshadowed by Fix-It Felix Jr., the "good guy" star of their game, and sets off on a quest to prove he's got what it takes to be a hero.
Walt Disney Pictures

Originally published on Fri November 2, 2012 11:15 pm

After a very long engagement that began with the original Toy Story, Disney finally made an honest woman out of Pixar in 2006, when it paid the requisite billions to move the computer animation giant into the Magic Kingdom. But Disney's spirited 2010 hit Tangled made it abundantly clear that Pixar had a say in the creative marriage: The story of Rapunzel may be standard Disney princess fare, but the whip-crack pacing and fractured-fairy tale wit felt unmistakably Pixar. From now on, it would seem, Mickey Mouse and Luxo Jr.

Read more
Movie Reviews
6:16 pm
Thu July 19, 2012

After The Recession, An American Versailles On Hold

When they outgrew their 26,000-square-foot mansion, David and Jackie Siegel set out to build their dream home, which was to be the biggest in the U.S. The Queen of Versailles looks at what happened when the recession ruined that dream.
Lauren Greenfield Magnolia Pictures

Originally published on Thu July 19, 2012 4:03 pm

When director Lauren Greenfield started filming The Queen of Versailles, a documentary about 74-year-old David Siegel, a billionaire timeshare magnate from Orlando, and Jackie, a trophy wife 30 years his junior, they had outgrown their 26,000-square-foot home.

Read more
Movie Reviews
4:03 pm
Thu June 21, 2012

In 'Brave,' A Pixar Princess At Odds With Her Place

Merida, the heroine in Pixar's Brave, causes much family drama by refusing to get married — and acting more like her father, King Fergus, than a "proper princess."
Disney/Pixar

Not since Walt Disney's heyday has an animation company enjoyed a creative — and technically innovative — run like Pixar, now on a two-decade stretch that started with Toy Story in 1995 and continued with modern classics like Finding Nemo, Monsters Inc., The Incredibles, WALL-E, Ratatouille and two Toy Story sequels that took on improbable depth and complexity. Over the years, the only persistent knock against Pixar is its lack of one thing Disney movies had in spades: female heroines.

Read more
Movie Reviews
4:08 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

'That's My Boy' Explores The Far Reaches Of Vulgarity

Reunited with an uptight son (Andy Samberg, right), a beer-swilling ne'er-do-well (Adam Sandler) counsels more heedless hedonism in That's My Boy.
Tracy Bennett Columbia Pictures

Originally published on Fri June 15, 2012 3:49 pm

Like the twisted love child of Van Halen's "Hot for Teacher" video and the Mary Kay Letourneau scandal, the Adam Sandler comedy That's My Boy opens with a middle-school Lothario bedding — and later impregnating— a sexually voracious instructor.

If their genders were reversed, That's My Boy would be cause for a congressional hearing. But in a film defined by juvenile fantasy, the kid becomes not only the class hero, but an '80s cultural icon on par with Vanilla Ice and Diff'rent Strokes' Todd Bridges (both of whom appear as themselves.)

Read more
Movie Reviews
4:03 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Paul Williams is 'Still Alive,' And Taking Every Gig

The Muppet Movie." href="/post/paul-williams-still-alive-and-taking-every-gig" class="noexit lightbox">
Paul Williams, subject of the documentary Paul Williams Still Alive, wrote some of the most enduring songs of the '70s — including "Rainbow Connection" from The Muppet Movie.
Abramorama

A diminutive giant of the 1970s, Paul Williams composed some of the decade's sweetest and most enduring songs — including The Carpenters' "We've Only Just Begun" and "Rainy Days and Mondays," Helen Reddy's "You and Me Against the World," Three Dog Night's "An Old Fashioned Love Song," and "Rainbow Connection" for The Muppet Movie.

Read more
Movie Reviews
4:03 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

A 'Cat' Burglar, Stealing His Way Through Paris

Out Of The Bag: Dino the titular feline eyes the dark streets of Paris from a perch atop Notre Dame Cathedral.
GKids

The Academy Award for Best Animated Feature was introduced in 2001, and throughout its brief history, it's mostly been a mechanism through which to honor whatever Pixar does every year.

Read more
Movie Reviews
4:03 pm
Thu May 24, 2012

'Men In Black 3': A Cartoonish Blast To The Past

Galaxy Defenders: Ten years after Men In Black 2, Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones reunite to play Agents J and K, partners in a covert organization dedicated to monitoring Earth's secret extraterrestrial population.
Sony Pictures

Originally published on Fri May 25, 2012 3:30 pm

From the Department of Inessentiality, Summer Division, comes Men in Black 3, one of those franchises that lost all creative life in the first sequel but keep drawing breath anyway, thanks to an iron lung powered by a half-billion dollars in worldwide grosses.

Read more
Movie Reviews
4:52 pm
Thu May 17, 2012

Down In 'Virginia,' Where The Crazy Runs Deep

Single mother Virginina (Jennifer Connelly) reads with her son, Emmett (Harrison Gilbertson), who remains devoted to her even when her ill-advised affair with the married sheriff of their small Virginia town puts pressure on her family.
Entertainment One

Originally published on Thu May 17, 2012 5:43 pm

Dustin Lance Black, the writer-director of the swampy Southern melodrama Virginia, won an Oscar for his script for Milk, but his new film has more in common with the three seasons he served as a writer, story editor and producer for the HBO series Big Love.

Read more

Pages