Barbara VanDenburgh

Select another critic »
For 147 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 6% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Barbara VanDenburgh's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Short Term 12
Lowest review score: 20 Mothers and Daughters
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 59 out of 147
  2. Negative: 10 out of 147
147 movie reviews
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Marielle Heller’s debut directorial effort is incisive and universal, despite its very specific and detailed setting.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The resulting portrait is nothing short of a tiny filmmaking miracle. It’s guaranteed to make you feel something — hopeful, probably, for Grace and her wards. And maybe even for the future of indie filmmaking.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The Tribe is that rare breed of film so masterful in execution it requires watching once, yet so devastating you may never be able to stomach seeing it again.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Barbara VanDenburgh
    It is not hyperbole to say Oyelowo is a revelation. The British actor brings phenomenal humanity, grace and torment to a historical figure who once seemed to loom too large a legend to make flesh on screen.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Farhadi again burrows deep into his characters to tell an achingly intimate story, spinning grand tragedies out of minor lives in which the past lingers in the air, a perfume that haunts long after its wearer has left the room.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The same effortless chemistry that made the comedians such ideal Golden Globes hosts is on full display in this broad comedy, given extra oomph by a wise and glorious R rating that opens the floodgates of creative vulgarity.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Particle Fever does an excellent job of laying out what's at stake as it documents the creation and fine-tuning of the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    It's a well-written rom-com with rascally charm, a modest story of an awkward Brooklyn girl making a go of life. It's irreverent and rough around the edges with an imperfect protagonist, blue language, scatological humor and rambling confessional stand-up monologues, sometimes about bodily fluids. The laughs are frequent and ribald.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    It would be unbearable if it weren’t so completely self-aware.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Koreeda makes thrilling the rich inner lives of four young women trying to navigate rocky emotional terrain in the wake of their father’s death.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Cliff Curtis is staggeringly good as Gen.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Though polished and image-conscious, offering too little insight into the physical and psychological trauma suffered in the bullet’s wake, the film is nevertheless moving without resorting to saccharine overtures.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The strength of Peace Officer is that it doesn’t attempt to pit the viewer against the police. Its target, rather, is the system.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    20 Feet From Stardom is frequently sad and frustrating. But while there’s heartbreak aplenty, the film doesn’t function as a pitying paean to unmined talent — it’s ultimately a celebration of the unsung.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    What it lacks in thematic innovation it more than makes up for with enough memorable characters and visual splendor to make Zootopia a perennial Disney favorite.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Blue Ruin is a movie about revenge, but it reaches far past the bottom-shelf titillations of fantasy to tell a richer, character-driven story with a protagonist who's less avenging angel than ghost.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Even if its stunted ambitions come as a disappointment, Pieta nevertheless is an expertly crafted thriller and a fine addition to East Asian revenge cinema.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    It’s a powerfully sensual movie, gorgeously lensed colors and textures conveying its characters emotional states while thoughtfully exploring the range of human sexuality through Adenike’s experience.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Even more than an expose of bad reporting and social hysteria, The Witness is an intimate exercise in grief and healing
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    It’s a zombie movie that, amidst the giddy bloodshed, allows room for philosophical questions about our fundamental responsibilities to one another. It may not be something we’ve never seen before, but it’s something we can benefit from seeing again.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    There's a purity to the experience of watching a film so naturalistic, like living in someone else's life for two hours.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The Patience Stone largely functions as a one-woman play, with Farahani’s character soliloquizing over her husband’s body.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The brutally sparse documentary Rich Hill removes poverty from the realm of the abstract and makes it personal.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The cultural specificity and fiercely patriarchal setting sets Mustang apart. It’s a timely reminder that, even still, there are few safe havens in the world for a free spirit.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    It’s a Fellini-esque carnival of humanity on display, a more debauched phantasmagoria reminiscent of “La Dolce Vita.” But “La Dolce Vita” created the paparazzi; The Great Beauty takes place in a world where the paparazzi have existed for decades.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Barbara VanDenburgh
    Monkey Kingdom is a delightful gambol, visually stunning and educational without feeling like it, with a propulsive drama about escaping one's lowly social class at its core that inspires reflection on some uncomfortable truths about ourselves.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 70 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The film ricochets between Tammy being an oblivious cartoon goblin and a textured, sympathetic human being who just wants to be loved. Perhaps if the film had catered a little less to McCarthy's comedic gifts — the curse-word fugue states, the slapstick humor, the non sequiturs — the end result would have felt more balanced and rewarding.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The film is less effective, and less focused, when it switches into activism mode. Not that its heart isn't in the right place — we all know about the appalling state of institutionalized elder care. Which is the problem with those segments: We all know this already, and the filmmaking feels like perfunctory, necessary padding.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Barbara VanDenburgh
    A great soundtrack can go a long way in smoothing over a decent movie’s rough patches, and Northern Soul’s is fantastic.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Barbara VanDenburgh
    The stunning character work is accented with moments of pure cinematic poetry. Audiard uses the camera like a paintbrush, composing lyrical interludes and disorienting transitions with the power to leave you breathless. It’s all so quietly brilliant — until it isn’t.

Top Trailers