Amy Nicholson
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For 206 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 55% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 44% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 3.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Amy Nicholson's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 56
Highest review score: 100 The Overnighters
Lowest review score: 0 3 Geezers!
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 84 out of 206
  2. Negative: 36 out of 206
206 movie reviews
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Amy Nicholson
    Jesse Moss's documentary The Overnighters is a heart-wrencher about the clash between economics and ethics. Its story sounds like the sort of dry news blurb you'd skim over in the Sunday paper but unfolds into an epic tragedy.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Amy Nicholson
    A transcendent comic chiller, when The Guest's characters are in peril we actually care, and Wingard respectfully makes the kills clean and quick.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Amy Nicholson
    Red Army is a riveting look behind the Iron Curtain.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Amy Nicholson
    As an action film — which in small bursts it is — Blue Ruin is disquieting and raw, like Commando turned inside out.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Amy Nicholson
    Director Rian Johnson's resulting film, a cornfield neo-noir, is the coolest, most-confident sci-fi flick since 2006's "Children of Men."
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    Lord and Miller do great work within constraints, taking pre-made pieces and fashioning them into feats worthy of applause. It's no wonder they made a Lego movie — and it's no wonder it's so good.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    Gleeson is one of the finest actors we have, and in casting him as the lead, McDonagh stacks the deck so that regardless of our own religious reservations, we're forced to care about Father James as a man.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    Nicholas Stoller's hilarious Neighbors splashes into summer with the satisfying swish-plop-hooray of a winning beer pong serve.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    Nebraska is the antidote to other family charmers about goofballs in matching sweaters.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    Grand Budapest is Anderson's most mature film, and his most visually witty, too. It's playful without being self-congratulatory, and somehow lush without being cloying.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    The Boxtrolls is a kiddie charmer that makes you laugh, cower, and think of Hitler. That’s an unusual trifecta, but then again, this is an unusual film.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    '71
    [An] excellent, tensely controlled thriller.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    They Came Together is one joke repeated until you're broken down by the giggles. It shouldn't work as well as it does, and wouldn't if it weren't perfectly cast with America's Comedy Sweethearts.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    Rebel Wilson is the peroxided Aussi who stole scenes as Kristen Wiig's roommate in "Bridesmaids," and this is the role that will turn her into a star.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    The Rover might not be about anything at all, but the dust it stirs up sticks to you after you leave the theater.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    Obvious Child is perfect for those who want more honesty in fiction.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    The masterstroke of Frank, the film ex-Sidebottom collaborator Jon Ronson has now co-written, is that this time the man in the mask is a modern Mozart. And, unsparingly, Ronson has written himself as the jealous goober who risks everything, with the delusion that he's the smart one.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Amy Nicholson
    It's impossible to watch The Punk Singer and not ask if feminism is dead. That's a fair starting question. But a better one is what if it isn't — what if we've just stopped recognizing it?
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Jaden Smith is destined to be a star by the force of will (and wallets) of parents Will and Jada Smith, both producers on The Karate Kid. But he's also got the raw material.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    You're Next streamlines the gory stuff for something truly shocking: good characters. Not deep, mind you. But characters who are crayoned in bright enough that they're interesting even while alive.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Ford is hilarious and brooding, deeply wrinkled and deeply intimidating. He's got the best lines, courtesy of screenwriter Aline Brosh McKenna (of the repellent "27 Dresses" and the much better "The Devil Wears Prada").
    • 52 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Every frame of silent, lip-biting, pent-up tension in the series has been holding its breath for this -- a 600-minute soap opera suddenly exploding into a Grindhouse slasher.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Joe
    Joe is Cage's periodic reminder that he's one of his generation's great talents.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Why is Emmerich elbowing his way into the conversation about Shakespearean authorship? Because the debate is explosive - and he can't resist packing on a few more pounds of dynamite on his confident drama of incest, greed and beheadings.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    This over-the-top sequel caters to the lowest common denominator in the best possible way, and it's so fully committed to brainless bombast that it muscles audiences to applaud by sheer force of will.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    What makes Forte so funny is that he stalks through the flick cocksure and utterly deadpan.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    It's less interesting watching them do what they both feel they have to do -- talk about their craft -- especially as both give off the prickly energy of artists who would rather create than explain. They're more comfortable asking one another questions, even though the answers are shrugged off humbly.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    This movie is a narrow character piece that shows Pacino wrestling to reveal layers in a man who's worried he might actually be hollow. He and Fogelman string together dozens of small, perfect moments.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    The script is solid, and the fight scenes are excellent.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    The Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs franchise takes its comic cues from The Muppets and Pee Wee's Playhouse, kids' shows that ripen as their audience matures.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Mood Indigo is bitter candy, a heartbreaker that uses sugar as a trap.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Though it ticks on too long, watching Fujitani's fascinating sleuth overestimate her skills is as satisfying as a mug of hot matcha on a soul-chilling night.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    What lingers in Nathan's documentary isn't the swaggering trails of diesel fumes. It's the sadness of watching Pug narrow his options.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Smart, empathetic and wholly believable.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    It's a smart film about the shrinking divide between man and robot. It's also a hoot, an anti-comedy where all of the jokes double as threats, and vice versa.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Meet the new face of superheroes: Marc Webb's totally teenage and totally fun take on the Spider-Man franchise.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Stiller balances his big ambitions with small, grounded truths.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Theron proved her comedy chops in the underrated Young Adult, and here she and MacFarlane get along like two eager puppies. If MacFarlane indulges in self-flattery by keeping in all the times this babe bursts into laughter at his jokes, he's forgiven; at least we feel like the characters are actually listening to each other.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    If the off-kilter pleasures of Volume I is von Trier enticing us to watch the rest, consider me seduced.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Esparza's cast of unknowns is so fresh and raw that the drama could be mistaken for a documentary if the camera work weren't so controlled.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Gebbe never asks us to believe in Tore's god, but she asks us to honor his beliefs. She's found an incredible conduit in Feldmeier.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    This documentary on one of the most universal, photographed, analyzed, opined upon and slavered over human experiences manages to astound.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    For the small but enthusiastic documentary crowd and the comic's diehard fans, it's a must-see.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Adam Green's inventively gruesome slasher is the widest unrated release in 25 years.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 80 Amy Nicholson
    Despite all the boobs, The Change-Up is very fair to its female characters-well, at least to Mann and Wilde, who both ring true, even if Wilde is almost too good to be true...It sounds like a trifling detail, but those details are sorely missing from most "date movies," in which even the women laughing in the audience exit feeling like they're the butt of the joke.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Jones delivers her line readings so robotically that even her truths sound like lies. She's got the look of a Hitchcock blonde, and the movements of a deer in the headlights. Even her kisses look fake.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    There's plenty of atmosphere and awe, even if it's in the service of a story that starts rote and finds its sea legs only when half the divers have sunk their bones to Davy Jones.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Kimberly Peirce changes almost nothing in her rallying remake of Brian De Palma’s classic about a troubled telekinetic teenager. She doesn’t have to.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Eclipse has its cheesecake and eats it, too.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Young Ones is an old-fashioned, worthwhile curio down to the closing credits.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    While it's easy to tease first-time writer-director Tom Gormican's raunchy rom-com, the trio has a shaggy chemistry, and most of the jokes hit.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Chris Matheson's script focuses its energy on small, wickedly funny gags, half of which Robinson seems to have sputtered out as improv.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    An odd little film that aims only to please itself.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Évocateur: The Morton Downey Jr. Movie is as fair a portrayal the weak-chinned warrior will get — and fairer than he deserves.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    In its small moments, say when Walhberg sighs that his robe misspells "Micky," The Fighter feels clued-in to the very small, very tough world of a man trying to make his way out of his block-and after getting to know his family, you want to help him pack his bags.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Like its actress, it's an ambitious knockout that doesn't quite live up to its potential. But its argument is worth hearing: Instead of crying for the collapse of one actress, Folman is crying for the collapse of civilization, the triumph of the synthetic over the real.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Roar is a thrilling bore, an inanity with actual peril in every scene.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    There's something fearlessly uncool about the film, which suffers mostly from being made 30 years too late.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Cumberbatch, a tweedy Brit with an M.A. in Classical Acting and a face like a monstrous Timothy Dalton, has beefed up to become a convincing killer. He's brutal and bold, and the film around him isn't bad either.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Step Up Revolution has again found some of the most kinetic talents in the country.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Big Hero 6 is easier to admire than to love. It veers from chipper to noisy to dark stretches where it grapples with adult-sized grief.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    If you break the script down into plot points, it sounds a little silly: The narrative thrust is simply Katniss shooting several pro-revolution commercials. But it works because we're fascinated by media fights — thousands occur online every day.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    The Voices is a perfect film that's hard to watch.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    The Wile E. Coyote fatalities are fun, but it's that repetitive moment of horror that holds this bipolar stunt together: Cruise, bug-eyed and gasping for breath as he shakes off his fear and grimly prepares for the next suicide mission.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Show 'Em What You're Made Of convincingly argues that these boy-men have something to say about the fickleness of fate — something they knew more about as young men than any of the cynics who dismissed them for dancing in unison. The hardest part will be convincing people to listen.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    When the violence gets unbearable, take comfort in the troop of trainers on the sidelines who prove that, for now, man and beast still make a good team.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Country Strong is a charmer that makes you forgive all of its false notes simply because the talent plays them with conviction.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Is the result - a slapstick, bizarro melodrama where Ferrell plays the Mexican born and bred scion of a wealthy farmer - meant more for Spanish speakers or stoned and giggly Americans? It's a tough call.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    The cast keeps us invested in Filly's furious resurrection.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    For smart, strong girls and the guys who like them, Vampire Academy will hit a vein.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Fogel and Joni Lefkowitz's script captures the girls' relationship in fine detail.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    This is a curio that demands to be seen.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Foxcatcher is merely a very, very good character study with acting so fine that it's frustrating it's not in the service of a real, emotional wallop.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    The flick, written by debut screenwriter James McFarland, is twisty, clever, and totally Nineties.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Two hours of femmepowering wish fulfillment.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Everly has the heaving, bloody bosoms of an exploitation flick, yet Hayek gives the character powerful dignity. She's no victim, nor an off-the-shelf "strong woman."
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    There's no honor among thieves, but there is dignity in Focus's ambition. And if the final film is more vodka ad than all-time classic, there's still no shame in pouring another cocktail and rewinding the tape.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Gold is merely the conduit for the film's real focus: Like his own reviews, City of Gold is a love letter to L.A.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Justin McMillan and Christopher Nelius' rah-rah documentary is most alive when it unearths old '80s footage of the friends partying it up with blond groupies — talk about thrilling curves.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Kills tops the 2010 original by not giving a mierda about logic or character.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    The best parts of Sparling's script play like an absurdist snuff film.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Fortunately for Burton, Big Eyes is actually good. Not great, but good enough -- the perfect middlebrow portrait of the ultimate middlebrow artist.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Though the arc of the film is as saccharine as a Precious Moments figurine — and it'll play that way for audiences who can't be bothered to look closer — Hudgens is too honest to believe in simple, happy endings.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Amy Nicholson
    Like Todd Haynes' "I'm Not There"-which never once came out and said the name "Bob Dylan"-Nowhere Boy bites its tongue and refuses to say "The Beatles."
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    Joseph Gordon-Levitt dominates this slight, worth-a-watch dramedy.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    [Whedon] wants to give us everything, and that he fits it all in is its own kind of feat. Age of Ultron is a middling film, yet it's so heavy with his sweat that it never feels like a lazy cash-in — which for a preordained summer megahit is an accomplishment.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    By poking fun at the cliches, director Gluck thinks he can turn an inevitability into an in-joke. Eh, it'll do.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    If only Shepard's movie lived up to his leading man. It's merely a frame for a character portrait, with Shepard's camera screwing our eyes to Law's performance and pasting in supporting actors and situations for no larger purpose than to see his reaction to them.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    For all its empathy and equilibrium, The East has nowhere to go after the script backs itself into a corner.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    Every bit of it is more advanced: The actors are better, the plot is tighter, the special effects sleeker, the messages more heartfelt. Yet it lacks Verhoeven's bloody, biting scream.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    It's dumb and consistently funny.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    It doesn't entirely engage, in part because it's so determined to correct the story that it can't let us explore it ourselves.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    Director Douglas McGrath's empathy rescues it from the brink of disaster porn - it's so good-hearted and optimistic that a swath of stressed out moms will feel the flick speaks directly to them, which it does.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    Payne's book is more epic and shameless than Gustin Nash's tidy adaptation.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    Won't Back Down makes grand drama of bureaucracy, positioning Gyllenhaal as the knight slaying 400 pages of government paperwork in order to wrest control of her daughter's elementary school. It's rousing - if not thrilling - stuff.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    Land Ho! feints toward pathos and perversity, only to decide that it's better off giving us abridged, postcard emotions.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    Like us, the deft and merciless director Daisy von Scherler Mayer ("Party Girl") sides with the girls, and to stack the deck she's hired five tremendous actresses.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    A good romance can make us endure an implausible plot as long as the leads have heat. Luke and Sophia's connection feels true. Who cares about the mechanics? By the time The Longest Ride runs right off a cliff, we're already strapped in to the passenger seat. Give in and enjoy the plunge.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    The film strips Fifty Shades of Grey to its essentials: a confident man, an awkward girl, and a red room rimmed with leather handcuffs. From there, Taylor-Johnson rebuilds. She constructs an erotic dramedy that takes its romance seriously even as it admits that Christian Grey's very existence is absurd.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Amy Nicholson
    The confident, female-driven sensuality of Kiss of the Damned anchors this handsome nonsense.

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