NPR
For 237 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 67% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 30% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 11.9 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Bob Mondello's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 Mr. Turner
Lowest review score: 10 I Am Number Four
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 7 out of 237
237 movie reviews
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    Spectacularly self-absorbed protagonists step on each other, jockeying first for position, and ultimately for survival.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    W.
    A surprisingly unsurprising film.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    It's an inspiring story, if one that doesn't need quite as much poetic inspiration as Ed Zwick's movie insists on giving it, with dialogue that's too often ornate and parable-inflected.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    Kaplan keeps the story breezy and brisk, and provides his down-to-earthily modern fairy tale with an appropriately other-worldly visual style.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    Director Saul Dibb, presumably knowing that this is pretty standard stuff for a costume epic, occupies us not just with the usual visuals -- of his star drifting through exquisitely furnished estates, draped in rich silks and brocades -- but also with some intriguingly offbeat sights.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    Moore is always watchable, Ruffalo and Bernal get a nice rivalry going without ever establishing eye contact (as it were), and Danny Glover has some nice moments in an underdeveloped part as an older man who finds, to his benefit, that love is blind.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    Doubt cast a long moral shadow on Broadway but seems blunter on screen, largely because Shanley's fussy directorial notions ... are less nuanced than the religious and moral arguments he's given his principal characters.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    In short, Ritchie's come up with precisely what you'd expect of him — a pumped-up, anachronistically modern Sherlock Holmes designed for the ADD crowd. Expect a sequel. Or six.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    Behind the Burly Q traces that history all the way back to the early part of the 20th century, but doesn't really come into its own until Zemeckis can interview the stars themselves rather than their children.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    There are better special effects than last time, and Bella gets to be brave when it counts. All of which should be like a freshly opened vein for fans -- especially as it results in Eclipse ending up almost exactly where it started, with weddings still to come. Can you wait?
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    It's as if everyone involved in the film figured they could keep Hereafter from turning ghost-story hokey by making it grounded, beautiful and matter-of-fact. And it sort of works. There are no inadvertent giggles here; it just doesn't add up to enough, after.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    The dude with the blond mane and bulging biceps clearly owns that hammer. And when the screenplay gives him something besides arrogance to work with, he owns the movie too.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Bob Mondello
    Oz the Great and Powerful tells the story of how the Wizard came to Oz, answering a question I suspect no one was asking, but with considerable digital wizardry.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 55 Bob Mondello
    If this fabulously decked-out foursome is self-absorbed enough to be inadvertently cruel on occasion, they also suffer lots of guilt -- though their angst is rendered somewhat less angsty for viewers by the zingers, the designers, and the cheerfully objectified men on display.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 55 Bob Mondello
    Even in a film that clocks in at a quasi-epic 2 hours and 40 minutes, that's just too much narrative. And matters aren't helped by the fact that Lee, who has never staged battle sequences before, hasn't quite got the rhythms or camera angles right.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 55 Bob Mondello
    The performances are nicely calibrated, even when the director isn't meshing them into a persuasive whole. Summer Bishil makes Jasira an appealing naif -- smart, precocious and curious, if too easily led by hormones.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 55 Bob Mondello
    There's something centrally pat and predictable about the coincidence-laden story, and by the time they get to Vegas, The Lucky Ones has been all but done in by a surfeit of serendipity.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 55 Bob Mondello
    After a while, you can see the setups happening -- and once you do, the careening gets predictable. Which gets old, really fast.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 55 Bob Mondello
    Unlike the tale told in "Precious", however, The Blind Side's story is contrived, storybook sweet, credulity-straining and ... um, true.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    If what audiences are looking for is a thrill ride, or even a pervasive eeriness, The Happening's just not happening.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    This plot is not being taken terribly seriously. It's mostly a pretext for songs that are mostly a pretext for acting silly.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    The students all say and do more than they should in the filmmaker's presence, which certainly makes them watchable -- sort of a slow-motion train wreck.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    The film is more appealing for its scenery, which is as breathtakingly blue as you'd expect, than for its drama.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    A little slow for the very youngest kids -- though the messages it imparts are certainly ones you'll want them to hear.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    As action movies go, Valkyrie is pretty short on action.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    The title is drawn from a verse Hannah wrote just before she was captured -- and that impulse is enough to sustain audience interest.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    Laughs? Schmaltz? Life lessons? They're all there in Sean McGinly's pleasantly lackadaisical script, but not in such abundance that they seem reason enough to see the film.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    The upside of a Coward-powered letdown is that I had plenty of time to contemplate one particularly improbable fact about Easy Virtue: that it had a previous incarnation on film. As, of all things, a silent picture.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    Bottom line: Grant the film's big moments a kind of loopy majesty, and note that they're better acted than they deserve to be, not just by Ifans, Redgrave and Spall, but by David Thewlis and Edward Hogg as the villainous father-son team of William and Robert Cecil. It's a classy cast.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Bob Mondello
    The story, by brothers Erich and Jon Hoeber, who also penned the clever, quippy, aging-assassin movie "Red," is cleverer and quippier than it has any reason to be, even if it makes not the remotest sense.

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