For 668 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 30% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 69% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1.5 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Anthony Lane's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 The Kid with a Bike
Lowest review score: 0 The Da Vinci Code
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 48 out of 668
668 movie reviews
    • 97 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Mungiu’s pacing is so sure, however, in its switching from loose to taut, and the concentration of his leading lady so unwavering, that the movie, which won the Palme d’Or at last year’s Cannes Film Festival, feels more like a thriller than a moody wallow.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    I prefer to think of Akin, however, not as a forger of patterns but as an ironist who understands that bad luck is a crucible, in the heat of which we are tested, burned away, or occasionally transformed. The Edge of Heaven is about something more exasperating than crossed paths; it is about paths that almost cross but don't, and the tragedy of the near-miss.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Ari Folman, the director of Waltz with Bashir, has made a movie so unusual that it overflows any box in which you try to contain it. Call it an adult psycho-documentary combat cartoon and you're halfway there.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    However moody, though, Two Lovers didn't strike me as a downer, for the simple reason that it wells with sights and sounds that are guaranteed to lift, not sink, the spirits.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Consume with great caution, and with joy.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Cold Souls has its flaws, and it threatens to sag into a Paul-like morbidity, but Giamatti’s anxious mien and unspectacular shamblings have never been better deployed.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    I have seen The Baader Meinhof Complex three or four times now, and, despite exasperation with its fissile form, I find it impossible not to be plunged afresh into this engulfing age of European anxiety.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The film is a hybrid. Its backdrop is despair, but the foreground action has the silvery zest of a comedy.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Get Low is deftly played, and it rarely mislays its ambling charm, but what a forbidding fable it could have been if the truth about Felix Bush, rather than emerging into sunlight, had slunk back into the woods.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Solondz will never be meek and mild, and there are spasms of shame and awkwardness here that will make even devoted viewers wince as sharply as ever. But the movie, his best to date, and a sequel of sorts to "Happiness," feels drenched in an unfamiliar sadness.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Not to warm to this movie would be churlish, and foodies will drool on demand.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    This final film -- after so many dazzling studies of adultery, such as "La Femme Infidele (1969) -- is a touching and unfashionable hymn to married love. [1 Nov. 2010, p.121]
    • The New Yorker
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The barbs of wit, delivered throughout, are like the retractable daggers used in stage productions of "Macbeth" or "Julius Caesar": they gleam enticingly, they plunge home to the hilt, but they leave no trace of a wound.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Nothing out of the ordinary happens in Blue Valentine, and that, together with the vital, untrammelled performances of the two leading actors, is the root of its power.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    This is typical Suleiman, as anyone who saw his no less wondrous work "Divine Intervention" (2002), can testify.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Best of all -- and the only thing that has really made me laugh at the movies this year -- is a lengthy scene in which Coogan, inspired by the landscape, confesses his desire to star in a traditional costume drama. [13 & 20 June 2011, p. 128]
    • The New Yorker
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    What the writer and director, Sean Durkin, delivers here is not a cult film at all but something more troubled and insidious - a film about a cult.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Von Trier's latest fable is nothing without its blaze of majesty - or, as his detractors would say, its bombast.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    In short, The Descendants is the latest exhibit in Payne's careful dissection of the beached male, which runs from Matthew Broderick's character in "Election" to Jack Nicholson's in "About Schmidt" and Paul Giamatti's in "Sideways."
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The Artist is not just about black-and-white silent pictures. It is a black-and-white silent picture. And it's French.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Jacky is not merely beefed up. He is a Minotaur in the making, and that, surely, is why his story becomes such a labyrinth. [27 Feb. 2012, p.87]
    • The New Yorker
    • 52 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    It is the greatest biblio-climax of any film since "Fahrenheit 451," although Truffaut's prayer was that reading might yet survive calamity and carry the torch of the civilized. Detachment snufffs out that faith; books it warns us, are the first thing to go. [19 March 2012, p.91]
    • The New Yorker
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Inspiring though Marley is, however, it tends to deploy his music purely as an illustration of his life. Not once, as far as I could tell, do we watch a song being played straight through from beginning to end. [23 April 2012, p.82]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    This mania is what Marvel followers have hungered for, and it would be fruitless to deny their delight. As Loki says to a crowd of earthlings, "It is the unspoken truth of humanity that you crave subjugation." We do, Master, we do.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Headhunters is admirably swift in style, and dangerously silly in what it begs us to swallow, but at its heart is a consummate depiction of a permanent type - the proud and prickly male, thrown back on his desperate wits. Small may not be beautiful, but it lives.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Anderson's great gift is to catch the generations as they intersect. [4 & 11 June 2012, p 132]
    • The New Yorker
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The result feels, like Shakespeare's play, at once ancient and dangerously new.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Strangest of all, we go along with it in a sort of dream, scarcely pausing to complain, so expert is Mungiu at drawing us into the fold of these passionate souls. [8 March 2013, p.80]
    • The New Yorker
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Stroker slips down the gullet with less fuss, but there are enough blood sprays and snapped vertebrae to pacify the director's clamorous fan club -- and, for the rest of us, plenty of chances to reconsider his style. It is, unquestionably, something to behold. [8 March 2013, p.80]
    • The New Yorker
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Blancanieves is a feast for the film-crazy. [8 April 2013, p.89]
    • The New Yorker
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    At last, a good big film. The legacy of the summer, thus far, has been jetsam: moribund movies that lie there, bloated and beached, gasping to break even. But here is something angry and alive: Elysium.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    There is no whodunit here — the horror is plain in the opening shots — and the how is presented with great restraint, but the why remains veiled and mysterious long after the film has ended.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Al Mansour is too smart to overdo the symbolic spin, but the thrust of her film, toward the end, could hardly be more urgent. [16 Sept. 2013, p. 72]
    • The New Yorker
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Still, it is a writer's privilege to trim and tailor at will, and everybody loves a duel. It would take the dullest of curmudgeons not to enjoy the surge of this saga, accurate or not, and the excesses of what already feels like a distant age. [30 Sept. 2013, p.84]
    • The New Yorker
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    What could be a plain tale -- and is in danger of becoming a sappy one -- grows surprisingly inward and dense. [25 Nov. 2013, p.135]
    • The New Yorker
    • 92 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    If you love the Coens, or follow folk music, or hold fast to this period of history and that patch of New York, then the film can hardly help striking a chord.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    [Farhadi's] gift for pulling us deep into the story, and for conveying the major burdens of these supposedly minor lives, is unimpaired.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    From the beginning, you can feel this restive, pulsing movie burn from discontent toward disaster. The whole thing should sap the spirit, and make you despair of a lost and wasted country, yet you are constantly shocked awake by the energy of Arbor, whether it is spent on insolence, initiative, or grief. The boy’s a bright wire.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    There are passages of gravity and grace here that few other directors could unfurl. [27 Jan. 2014, p. 78]
    • The New Yorker
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The monologue that Goldblum delivers there, grand with illusion and larded with mouthfuls of canapes, is entirely delicious -- roguish and absurd, but lending the film a zest that it was in danger of losing. [17 March 2014, p.79]
    • The New Yorker
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Enemy may crawl and infuriate, and, boy, does Villeneuve get rid of the grin. But the film sticks with you, like a dreadful dream or a spider in the bedclothes. Shake it off, and it's still there. [17 March 2014, p.78]
    • The New Yorker
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Here is the territory that "Twilight" never dared to enter. It was so busy with crushes, covens, werewolves, and all the other moth-eaten trappings of the genre that it forgot to ask, Why do vampires not die of boredom? Is time not the sharpest stake in the heart? [14 April 2014, p.86]
    • The New Yorker
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Joe
    Yet Joe, directed by David Gordon Green, succeeds. Although Green's resume has been as up and down as that of his leading man, his eye for decay has rarely blurred; and now, you sense, he has come to the right place. [14 April 2014, p.87]
    • The New Yorker
    • 63 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    His (Francois Ozon) theme could hardly be less original (think of "Bonjour Tristesse"), but the tautness is that of a horror film. [5 May 2014, p.85]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Miraculously, he (Polanski) brightens the faded material, and conjures his most graceful work in years.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Best of all, we get to witness Fassbender at full tilt — to revel in that gaunt, El Greco mug of his, which, for all its handsomeness, betrays no sunny side, whether here or amid the shenanigans of “X-Men.”
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Love Is Strange, however, is not about gay marriage. It is about a marriage that happens to be gay. If the film grows slightly boring, even that can be construed as an advance.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    What matters most about The Homesman, which Jones co-wrote and directed, is how willingly, and movingly, he cedes the stage to Hilary Swank, as Clint Eastwood did in “Million Dollar Baby.”
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    No male director would have put so much as a toe inside this trouble zone, although Kent does borrow a helpful domestic hint from “Shaun of the Dead”: rather than vanquish our worst nightmare, why not tame it, lock it away, and hope?
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Inherent Vice is not only the first Pynchon movie; it could also, I suspect, turn out to be the last. Either way, it is the best and the most exasperating that we’ll ever have. It reaches out to his ineffable sadness, and almost gets there.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    She (Cotillard) is the center of attention throughout, yet what matters is her willingness to conspire in the Dardennes’ plea for justice.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Leviathan is a tale for vertiginous times, with the ruble in free fall. There must be thousands of stories like Kolya’s right now, lives folding and collapsing, upon which Zvyagintsev could cast his unfoolable eye. Despite that, he is not primarily a satirist, or even a social commentator; he is the calm surveyor of a fallen world, and Leviathan, for all its venom, never writhes out of control.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    '71
    As the camera darts down alleyways, or prowls the housing projects where soldiers fear to tread, what really concerns Demange — and what lends such a kick to O’Connell’s performance, on the heels of “Starred Up” and “Unbroken” — is the bewilderment and the panic that await us, whoever we may be, in limbo.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    That is what I admire in While We’re Young; it shows a director not so much mooning over the past, with regret for faded powers, as probing his own obsessions and the limits of his style.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    About Elly both clutches us tight and shuts us out, adding wave upon wave of secrets and lies.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    In one respect, though not a major one, it is a masterpiece: seldom will you find a better class of fadeout.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The director is John Maclean, making his début, and, if he demonstrates how hard it is to handle whimsy, he more than atones for it with two tremendous set pieces — one in a store, and the other in an isolated homestead, girded with cornfields where a shooter can nestle and hide.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    What fleshes out the movie, and lends it such an extraordinary pulse of life, is the want of words.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Is it robust and plain-speaking, proud of its comic swagger, or is there something tight-mouthed in its imperative, with a hint of “or else” hanging off the end? Either way, the life of Amy is dished up for our inspection.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    While Woody Allen’s recent films have grown ever more hermetic in their perplexity, Baumbach is becoming as prolific, and as quick on the comic draw, as the Allen of yore. Will historians of humor look back on this movie, perhaps, and mark it as the point at which the torch was passed?
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    If Sicario does not collapse under its own grimness, that is because of the pulse: the care with which Villeneuve keeps the story beating, like a drum, as he steadies himself for the next set piece.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Damon has never seemed more at home than he does here, millions of miles adrift.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The dichotomy turns out to be a false one: whether you revile him or genuflect before him, you are still implying that the guy demands and deserves our fascination. What Sorkin and Boyle have to offer is not a warts-and-all portrait but the suggestion that there is something heroic about a wart.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Pan
    Wright’s best film so far, livelier and more disloyal to its source than “Atonement” or “Pride and Prejudice” — crams without a care. The outcome is that increasing rarity, a proper children’s film; even the tears are well earned.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    You might suggest that Bridge of Spies plays everything a touch safe, and that its encomium to American decency need not be quite so persistent. But when a film is as enjoyable as this one, its timing so sweet, and its atmosphere conjured with such skill, do you really wish to register a complaint? Would it help?
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The movie is rife with confusions of every type, and Hooper handles them with clarity, grace, and a surprising urgency, far more at ease in this intimate drama than he was with the super-sized galumphings of “Les Misérables.”
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Seldom, it is fair to say, does Kaufman just want to have fun, but as he lifts the spell of his gloom a surprising beauty breaks through.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    This is a scary movie and a serious one, because it lures us into the minds, and the earthly domains, of those who are themselves scared, night and day, that they have forfeited the mercies of God. It takes an original movie to remind us of original sin.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Zootopia, like its heroine, is zesty, bright, and breakneck, with chase scenes and well-tuned gags where you half expect songs to be.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Oddly, the effect of that imbalance is not just to heighten the charm of the film but to render it more credible: the course of true memory never did run smooth.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    Linklater barely puts a foot wrong, and he shows that a movie about happiness can be cogent and robust, rather than sappy or wispy; and yet, for all its gambolling mischief, Everybody Wants Some!! leaves us with plenty to rue.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    For the most part, though, Love & Friendship is a frolic: crisp and closeted rather than expansive, with curt exchanges in drawing rooms, carriages, and gardens.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Anthony Lane
    The practiced calmness of Kore-eda’s approach is such that you barely notice the speed at which he tugs the plot along and flips from one setting to the next.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    No one could claim that the film is a distinguished contribution to cinema, but it would be churlish to resist its geniality and speed.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    What will divide viewers is the plot; either the ending makes no sense or it forces you to rethink everything that went before.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The movie is, literally, a tough act to follow, thanks to the brusque, undemonstrative way in which Haneke chops from one subplot to the next. [3 Dec 2001, p.105]
    • The New Yorker
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    You leave the film like one of Giovanni's patients rising from the couch -- far from healed, but amused and pacified by the sympathy that has washed over you. [4 Feb 2002, p. 82]
    • The New Yorker
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The movie has a hard forties snap to it -- lust is a weapon and love is a letdown.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Nobody does shrewishness better than McEwan. [8 August 2003, p. 84]
    • The New Yorker
    • 82 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The only player to conquer Chicago is Catherine Zeta-Jones, who is no Charisse in her motions but who gets by on a full tank of unleaded oomph. [6 January 2003, p. 90]
    • The New Yorker
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The Good Thief is too spindly and unconfident for an actor of this bulk, yet without him it would curl up and die. [7 April 2003, p.96]
    • The New Yorker
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The deep drawback of Taking Sides is that it forgets to be interested in music. [8 September 2003, p. 100]
    • The New Yorker
    • 55 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Viewers will be split between those who wonder about this silly, trumped-up story and those who already know and love the silliness for what it was. [4 November 2002, p. 110]
    • The New Yorker
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    More than forty years have passed since A Woman Is a Woman won the Jury Prize at the Berlin Film Festival for "originality, youth, audacity, impertinence." (When did you last see a movie that might warrant such an award?) [26 May 2003, p. 102]
    • The New Yorker
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Shyamalan often tries too hard, but nobody else can conjure such a sudden flood of worry, or summon so unmistakable a stink of evil, and you come out of Signs, as you did from "The Sixth Sense," in severe need of loud music, bad jokes, and drinks with cherries and umbrellas in them -- anything to waft away the fug of unease. [12 August 2002, p. 82]
    • The New Yorker
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The sense of period, of ungainly English pride, is funny and acute, but the movie mislays its sense of wit as the girls grow up.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    A short, meaningless blast of fun from Disney.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The pathos of About Schmidt -- of the careful, Chekhovian work that it could have been --gradually slides away. [16 December 2002, p. 106]
    • The New Yorker
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    To my eyes, the whole thing past in a blur of fabulous collage. [2 September 2002, p. 152]
    • The New Yorker
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Leconte lacks the austerity to complete a film in which nothing much occurs. And so, with some reluctance, we are bustled toward a climax. [12 May 2003, p. 82]
    • The New Yorker
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    After a while, you stop counting the chases -- they just get longer and louder, and it's like watching the revival of a forgotten art form; the fact that it's done with a minimum of special effects makes it all the more stirring.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    As Mostow proved in “Breakdown” and “U-571,” he can churn out excitement at a steady pace; whether he can handle dread--altogether a more unstable material--is another matter. [14 & 21 July 2003, p. 85]
    • The New Yorker
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The great Bebe Neuwirth should apply for a patent on her slow and dirty smile. The scene in which she introduces her new conquest to her girlfriends over tea, and pretty well pimps him to any takers, is worth the price of a ticket. [29 July 2002, p. 92]
    • The New Yorker
    • 90 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Finding Nemo is, as it happens, the most dangerously sugared of the Pixar productions to date--how could any father-finding-son saga be otherwise?--but the threat is now one of oversophistication. [9 June 2003, p. 108]
    • The New Yorker
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Most of the innumerable sequels were tripe, but this one has a freshness -- even a kind of wit -- mixed in with all the blood.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    British director Michael Winterbottom has made his best and most driven picture to date. [22 September 2003, p. 202]
    • The New Yorker
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    The brilliance of Fin is that he reins in a lifetime of rage, and there is a determination in his eye, and in the line of his chin, that practiced moviegoers will, possibly to their surprise, identify as halfway to sexy--the world-weary smolder of the leading man. [6 October 2003, p. 138]
    • The New Yorker
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    What the novels leave us with, and what emerges more fitfully from this film, as if in shafts of sunlight, is the growing realization that, although our existence is indisputably safer, softer, cleaner, and more dependable than the lives led by Captain Aubrey and his men, theirs were in some immeasurable way better. [17 November 2003, p. 172]
    • The New Yorker
    • 91 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Such is the hazard of the cartoon: as a form, it thrives on elongation and excess, yet, within its vortices and crannies, who knows what moldy prejudice can breed? [1 December 2003, p. 118]
    • The New Yorker
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Anthony Lane
    Its characters are no different from the rest of us, in the cluster of their annoyances and kicks, yet utterly removed from us by a system that frowns upon ordinary desire. Jafar Panahi's movie, unsurprisingly, has been outlawed in Iran. Nobody likes a prophet. [19 January 2004, p. 93]
    • The New Yorker

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