For 1,712 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 49% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 49% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.2 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

A.O. Scott's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Summer Hours
Lowest review score: 0 Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000
Score distribution:
1712 movie reviews
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    It’s less that Mr. Cedar blends realism with absurdity than that he refuses to acknowledge any distinction between them.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Serves up its scattershot plots as if they were lined up on a menu, moving from appetizer to entree: there are more intrigues here than in the court of the Medicis.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    I hesitate, given the early date and the project's modesty, to call Into Great Silence one of the best films of the year. I prefer to think of it as the antidote to all of the others.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    One of the most subtle and inspired comedies you'll see this year.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    It is a heartbreaking film, and cruelty sometimes seems to be not only its subject but its method. Like the child on a high cliff that is one of its recurring images, the film walks up to the edge of hopelessness and pauses there, waiting to see what happens next.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Its subject is not addiction or ambition, or even love in a conventional romantic sense, but rather the more elusive and intriguing matter of intimacy: how it grows, falters and endures over time.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Brooklyn endows its characters with desires and aspirations, but not with foresight, and it examines the past with open-minded curiosity rather than with sentimentality or easy judgment.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Seeming to wander through small incidents and mundane busyness, it acquires momentum and dramatic weight through a brilliant kind of narrative stealth. You are shaken, by the end, at how much you care about these women and how sorry you are to leave their company.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    To call this thrillingly original, deeply felt movie a coming-of-age story would be to insult it with cliché. It’s much more the story, or rather a series of interlocking, incomplete stories, about what it feels like to be a certain age and to feel caught, as the title suggests, between the desire to be yourself and the longing to fit in.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Mr. Herzog’s film is a pulpy, glorious mess. Its maniacal unpredictability is such a blast that it reminds you just how tidy and dull most crime thrillers are these days.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    There are no simple answers or obvious conclusions to be gleaned from this movie, which, like its soundtrack, is both sad and vibrant, meandering and formally sure-footed. It is an exciting debut, and a film that, without exaggeration or false modesty, finds interest and feeling in the world just as it is.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Nimble and self-assured as Mr. Daniels’s direction may be, he could not make you believe in “Precious” unless you were able to believe in Precious herself. You will.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    It's a fine, tough little movie, technically assured and brutally efficient, with a simple story that ventures into some profound existential territory without making a big fuss about it.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    A memoir, a history lesson, a combat picture, a piece of investigative journalism and an altogether amazing film.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Mr. Peck's gambit works, and the result is a great film and a great performance.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    The movie is full of juices that give it a healthy, pungent flow.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    There is no doubt that Nim was exploited, and also no doubt that he was loved. Mr. Marsh, by allowing those closest to Nim plenty of room to explain themselves, examines the moral complexity of this story without didacticism. He allows the viewer, alternately appalled, touched and fascinated, to be snagged on some of its ethical thorns.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    There's more to everyone here than we're initially led to think. The Good Girl is like a neurotically charged post-millennial take on the trailer-park comedies that Jonathan Demme once claimed for himself.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Tchoupitoulas does explore the border between innocence and experience. It is alive with the risk and curiosity of youth, and unapologetic in insisting that the pursuit of fun can be a profound and transformative experience.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    This is not a fable of assimilation or alienation, but rather the keenly observed story of two people seeking guidance in painful and complicated circumstances.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Melancholia is emphatically not what anyone would call a feel-good movie, and yet it nonetheless leaves behind a glow of aesthetic satisfaction.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Bully forces you to confront not the cruelty of specific children - who have their own problems, and their good sides as well - but rather the extent to which that cruelty is embedded in our schools and therefore in our society as a whole.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Love & Mercy doesn’t claim to solve the mystery of Brian Wilson, but it succeeds beyond all expectation in making you hear where he was coming from.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    More of a hoot than any picture dealing with the bloody, protracted fight between the Soviet Army and the Afghan mujahedeen has any right to be.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    It is marvelously romantic, even though - or precisely because - it acknowledges the disappointment that shadows every genuine expression of romanticism.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    The messiness of the film seems appropriate to its subject, which is the attempt to bring at least a measure of order - and even a touch of grace - to a chaotic and frequently ugly reality.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Volver, full of surprises and reversals, unfolds with breathtaking ease and self-confidence. It is in some ways a smaller, simpler film than either "Talk to Her" or "Bad Education," choosing to tell its story without flashbacks or intricate parallel plots, but it is no less the work of a master.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Who would have expected Ms. Zellweger --- and Miramax -- to come through in a musical? And it's one of the few Christmas entertainments to run under two hours. Who couldn't love that?
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Though the movie is playfully postmodern in its pastiche of styles and its mingling of sincerity and self-consciousness, there is also something solidly old-fashioned about the way it tells its story.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 A.O. Scott
    Rust and Bone is a strong, emotionally replete experience, and also a tour de force of directorial button pushing. Mr. Audiard is a canny showman, adept at manipulating the audience's feelings and expectations with quick edits and well-chosen songs.

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