Barbara Shulgasser
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For 168 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 41% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 57% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 4.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Barbara Shulgasser's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 55
Highest review score: 100 A Family Thing
Lowest review score: 0 Love Stinks
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 71 out of 168
  2. Negative: 40 out of 168
168 movie reviews
    • 64 Metascore
    • 100 Barbara Shulgasser
    Dern is nothing short of brilliant here.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 100 Barbara Shulgasser
    This is one not to be missed.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Barbara Shulgasser
    The scenes with Stalin and his frightened underlings, his giddy yes-men tip-toeing around him, are written and directed by Duncan with a grace, agility and comic deftness one rarely is treated to at the movies these days.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 100 Barbara Shulgasser
    The film's premise is totally implausible yet great performances, directing and script allow us to transcend the concept of believability and enjoy nevertheless.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 88 Barbara Shulgasser
    Amazing comic performances...give this comedy its lovely manic pace, kept just within the realm of sanity.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 88 Barbara Shulgasser
    Ryan has an edge that is extremely becoming…This is her best work yet.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 Barbara Shulgasser
    An old-fashioned movie. It is simplistic, full of stock characters and easy solutions to difficult problems, and I absolutely loved it.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 88 Barbara Shulgasser
    Handsome, well-acted, well-written and beautifully directed movie.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 88 Barbara Shulgasser
    Shelton has a talent for using the specific to illustrate the universal. Avowed baseball haters loved "Bull Durham." And if watching golf sounds like an excellent insomnia cure, you will probably still enjoy Tin Cup.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Foster has whipped the actors into the sort of comic frenzy usually reserved for farce, and the ready-for-anything energy serves the material well.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Tennant and company do a fine job of retaining the otherworldliness of a fairy tale while at the same time explaining all the archaisms for a modern audience.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Dalmatians proves an apt playground for Hughes as one could surmise that his inspiration for treating comic bad guys in his movies so violently comes from a cartoon sensibility.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Eastwood is perfect as the bad guy (a thief) you root for.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    It was the adult in me that wept when the movie ended. Take the kid and have a good time.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Mangold's vision is bold. There is nothing cutesy or gimmicky about Heavy, which may be why something in its grimness recalls the work of Ingmar Bergman.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Ransom is every bit as taut and expertly directed, and it's another in the emergency genre, one in which Howard excels.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    While I was watching "Lone Star," I realized that what makes Sayles a good and socially responsible person - his ability to look at one thing a hundred different ways - is exactly what makes him a muddy filmmaker.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    You find yourself absorbed in simply looking at them to the extent that it's hard to hear what they're saying. It's a nice dilemma for a movie to present.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    It's as sunny as you would expect a Hanks project to be.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    This movie has everything.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    What's best about this script is the premise: a lawyer who doesn't lie.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Private Parts is a sparkling, nonstop entertainment written by Len Blum and Michael Kalesniko and directed by Betty Thomas, but sometimes it gives the impression that Stern is nothing short of Nobel Peace Prize material.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Think of this as "Die Hard" in a suit, with an election coming up.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    The script, by director Richard Kwietnioski and adapted from the Gilbert Adair novel, is poignant and well constructed.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    This is a good-hearted movie that unfortunately is wildly implausible and makes no sense.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    The ordinariness of the material gives way to the winning personalities of the stars.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    The disappointing ending aside, there is much to enjoy in The Game, a creation with a sheen so highly burnished that sometimes you feel you must look away.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    It's funnier, and bitchier, than Clare Boothe Luce's "The Women," and, best of all, it showcases three wonderful actresses who have rarely been better.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Copycat is as steady and reliable as a pulse and as exhilarating as a surge of adrenalin.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Softley and Amini say they consciously viewed Kate as a film noir kind of heroine, a beauty leading a good man astray. And that, added to the setting of the second half of the movie in canal-riven Venice, gives the story the kind of moral haziness that verges on Thomas Mann territory.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    It is familiarly old-fashioned, complete with montages of newspaper clippings fluttering past and calendar days slipping by. The sets, costumes, old cars and general atmosphere all beautifully recall moviemaking of a bygone era. And for that, hats off to Duke.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Add to that a perfect cast and one's only complaint will be that this is, at heart, another tear-jerker about how good it is to love and be alive and all of that.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Franklin juggles it all with wit and style, and suddenly you feel fine that this is only Mosley's first Easy Rawlins novel. Several more are just waiting to be adapted.
    • 15 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Especially fine are Spade and Louiso, the latter possessing a quality of injured integrity that is priceless here.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    A smart, funny and endearing movie. It has enough cynicism to satisfy the part of DiCillo that would mock a blue-eyed superstar, yet enough genuine sentiment to make it possible for us to swallow the cynicism.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    The acting and writing is a cut above the ordinary.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Tyler is a find for a director like Bertolucci. She is a blank slate of prettiness with her unadulterated, thoroughbred, long-limbed looks.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Voight's Wright is one of many examples of how Singleton and Poirier succeed in suggesting the ambivalence and shadings that make movie characters believable.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    All the performances are good, the script is subtle and waste-free and Danny Elfman's score is evocative and appropriate, but the direction is what gives the movie its sweep.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Huston manages to bring the unavoidable brutality of this story to the screen without seeming exploitative. And she gets good performances out of Malone, Leigh and Eldard. Glenne Headly gives a great performance as Leigh's saintly sister.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    To enumerate exactly how Bean messes up would be to expose the silliness of this movie, and since Bean's humor is terribly silly, rather, wonderfully silly, there isn't much point in going into detail.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Delpy and Hawke begin to grow on you and Linklater and his actors achieve a point midway through the film when the characters are so attractive and smart and emotionally daring that you'll be happy to spend the night with them.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Driver, who is padded but not fat, is an actress with self-possession to spare. Her looks defy conventional rules about modern beauty, but the directness of her gaze and the honesty of her smile make it difficult to look anywhere else when she is on screen.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    This movie has a first-rate script, and director Joseph Ruben ( "True Believer," "The Stepfather" ) knew exactly what to do with it.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Because the movie is otherwise so well made and so full of sweet emotion and "good" values, I was happy to ignore the shortcomings.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Director John McTiernan outdoes the previous "Die Hards" (McTiernan directed the first, Renny Harlin the second) with machinery, stunts, noise, bullets and guts. Hand-held camerawork tweaks the audience's sense of anxiety further, and for the most part it works well.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    The good guys metamorphose into bad guys and back into good guys with dazzling efficiency in Brian Helgeland's disturbing, comic script.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    In the attempt to rein in a cast playing a great assortment of exaggerated types, Schlesinger (who directed "Midnight Cowboy" and "Marathon Man" ) and Bradbury sometimes lose the tone of the movie.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Bay has two great assets in Connery and Cage. The special effects give The Rock a James Bondian feel so Connery's wry, world-weary devil-may-careishness looks right at home here.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Sometimes the movie lacks a quietness, an omission most egregiously felt at the end.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Coppola again shines his intelligence on this bestseller material, rather than just shoving it through the Hollywood mill unsifted.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    The movie is well made by director Michael Winterbottom ("Jude"), with a minimum of overdramatics.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    Of course, turning a novel by Woolrich into a light romantic froth is a little like turning King Lear into a musical comedy. But Benjamin has the right comic touch to pull this off.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Barbara Shulgasser
    With an original score by Alan Menken and Gilbert and Sullivan-ish songs by Menken and lyricist Stephen Schwartz, the movie is the cartoon equivalent of a full-scale, high-quality Broadway musical.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    While Birdcage has many isolated funny moments, long bits of slowness interrupt the energy.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    The most refreshing performance is by Mortensen.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Leaves the audience on such a devastatingly dramatic ledge.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    I like that Sheridan's girlfriend works at Starbucks. Snipes plays the part with the kind of high energy that large doses of caffeine would explain.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    The cliches are all here.... Eszterhas works around these scripting difficulties deftly enough, but the real pleasure here is in watching Bacon and Renfro as idol and adorer.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Sandra Goldbacher, writing and directing her first feature, is a sure-handed filmmaker. The movie is a tableau of sensuality.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Freundlich's problem is that he has made an essentially interesting movie that never seems brave enough to say what it really intends.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Directing his first movie, Jack Green, cinematographer on several Clint Eastwood films, shows an ease with the material (written by Jim McGlynn), but there's something a bit dull about the movie.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    For all its lazy beauty, the movie is rooted in the personalities of its lead characters and they, unfortunately, are bloodless, affectless, emotionless dopes who turn their considerable lack of scruples on the business of senseless killing, for which they seemingly have no remorse. [13 Feb. 1998]
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Hackman is, as ever, a master performer, an actor at the peak of his powers. However, he can't carry the whole movie.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Fans of sci-fi, special effects, big explosions, panicky crowd scenes and theater sound systems cranked up way beyond the capacity of the human ear to hear comfortably will love this movie. I am not among you.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    If the movie crumbles under its own stiffness at times, at least it has the two old pros' good performances to cheer us along the way.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    More about having a good time with some interesting people than it is about watching a fine movie.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    This is a movie that is wonderful on the peripherals.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    The chief terrorist is played nicely with war-weary desperation by Marcel Iures, a Romanian actor with the sucked-in cheeks and ennui of a Jeremy Irons.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Even if the movie is not a work of comic - or philosophical - genius, its existence does foretell of tolerance gaining a foothold in a largely intolerant world.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Barbara Shulgasser
    Scenes go on and on in endless, witless dialogue, ever accompanied by John Williams' hideously gushing music.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Unfortunately, the movie never really goes anywhere. It's all pleasant enough to watch, but you never feel that Danny and Arthur's craziness (eventually Danny is committed), Sid's stoicism, Selma's selflessness and Steven's despair coalesce to mean anything significant or illuminating.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Be that as it may, the movie offers the uplifting news bulletin that life is not about being happy with how much you weigh but with what kind of person you are. This is where the movie starts getting sloppy.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Neither offensive nor inspired.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    But in its own overblown, melodramatic way, complete with hideous and obtrusive music by Michael Kamen, clanging sound effects that will leave your ears ringing and a penchant on the part of director Paul Anderson ( "Mortal Kombat" ) for quick flashes of blood-drenched gore, Event Horizon is kind of a hoot.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    This is a piece of gloriously literary and serious filmmaking, but again it falls prey to misjudgments in pacing and rhythm.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    This is the kind of story that might have been interesting had it not been populated with dreary characters played by actors who were clearly coached to be as dull as possible.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Most disappointing is the fact that the movie ends so abruptly that you can't help wondering what the whole story amounts to, moving as it is.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    It's all quite inspiring, but despite the fact that this is based on someone's actual experiences, the whole thing has an unfortunate Hollywood ring to it.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    One of the most blithely, giddily ridiculous movies to come along in ages.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    There isn't much to hold onto with this movie. If anything, Cry trivializes the plight of the South Africans in its breezy treatment of apartheid.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    The movie, directed by veteran Jonathan Kaplan, has enough in common with such American-in-foreign-jail movies as "Midnight Express" and the recent "Return to Paradise" to make you wonder why it ever got made.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Martin Scorsese is certainly one of the great living movie directors. Sadly, this does not mean he can't make a mistake. Kundun is a mistake.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    What director Charles Russell ("The Mask") and co-writers Walon Green ("RoboCop 2") and Tony Puryear do right is supply the kind of non-stop action and laconic one-liners we live for in Arnold movies.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    A filmmaker of Jordan's capability is not likely to make anything less than a competent, watchable movie, and that Michael Collins is. I think content rather than form detracts from the cogency of the finished product in this case.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Director Joel Schumacher and screenwriter Akiva Goldsman seem incapable of emphasizing what's important and relegating the rest to secondary status.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    So while at times, Penn's film is moving and insightful about the way the heart survives tragedy, at other times it seems to have been made by a gifted schizophrenic who thinks that weird behavior is perfectly normal.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    The artificiality peculiar to moviemaking rubs up counter-productively against the artificiality peculiar to live theater, making the movie version of Gray's material seem arch, contrived and starchy, not the spontaneous eruption that his theater work manages to resemble.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    This bloated, self-important and logically absurd movie, made by the director of the equally historically hysterical "Forrest Gump," pretends to the thrones of Serious Thinking, of Important Messages and of Intellectual Provocation. If there were truly anything serious, important or intellectual about this movie, this planet would be in big trouble.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Director Simon West makes an impressive feature debut in this relentless action-comedy that is, more than anything else, about how funny it is to see hundreds of people exploded, shot, knifed, propellered and burnt to death, and how to land a plane on the crowded Vegas strip.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Leonardo DiCaprio? Excuse me, Leonardo DiCaprio? I know he makes teenaged girls cry, but, I mean, Leonardo DiCaprio?
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    The thrill is most certainly not in the script by David Koepp, written from Michael Crichton's novel....Most of the writing is the blandest sort of twaddle, jokes you can practically recite along with actors.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    The trouble comes when Woo's patented - that is, oft-repeated - style overwhelms any hope of discerning story or acting through the haze of burning, crashing, bleeding and exploding.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    I tried to find in Paltrow what all her admirers in numerous magazine articles have reported. I tried to ignore a less than enchanting English accent and a tendency to be wiped off the screen whenever other actors were given much to do.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Director Gary Fleder seems to be trying for the mood and atmosphere of "Seven," another Freeman film about murder and police work, but this movie isn't as stylish and the script by David Klass, based on the James Patterson novel, doesn't really hang together.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    By the time you get to the end of the movie and our heroes and Regis' cop buddy Dennis Miller must sprint through a series of tunnels beneath the White House racing against evil to save the presidency, if your credulity hasn't been tested you'll probably find your heart racing pleasantly.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    I'm not really sure who would enjoy this movie.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Except for the casting, it would be difficult to find any substantial difference between this movie and the previous ones, or this movie and any number of high-tech adventure movies of the last decade.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    Lee seems to think that all his major characters are basically good people who deserve another chance, and so for the sake of an inappropriate happy ending, everyone important gets one.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Barbara Shulgasser
    As always, Duvall is magnificent. Even in this small part, he manages to give one of the most stirring performances in the movie.

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