For 552 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 4.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Dave Kehr's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 55
Highest review score: 100 My Own Private Idaho
Lowest review score: 0 Vulgar
Score distribution:
552 movie reviews
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Leone brought back a masterpiece, a film that expands his baroque, cartoonish style into genuine grandeur, weaving dozens of thematic variations and narrative arabesques around a classical western foundation myth.(Review of Original Release)
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    The result is a film that hovers just beyond our grasp--mysterious, beautiful, and, very possibly, a masterpiece.
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    An enduring masterpiece--dark, deep, beautiful, aglow.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Charlie Chaplin finally got around to acknowledging the 20th century in this 1936 film, which substitutes machine-age gags for the fading Victoriana of his other work. Consequently, it's the coldest of his major features, though no less brilliant for it.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    The film's superb first two hours, which weave social and historical themes into rich personal drama, turn out to be only a prelude to the magnificent final hour--an extended ballroom sequence that leaves history behind to become one of the most moving meditations on individual mortality in the history of the cinema. (Review of 1983 Release)
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Perhaps the greatest and most revolutionary of Bresson's films, Balthazar is a difficult but transcendently rewarding experience, never to be missed.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Beautifully wrought, darkly funny and finally devastating, My Own Private Idaho almost single-handedly revives the notion of personal filmmaking in the United States. [18 Oct 1991]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Brilliantly funny, bracingly smart and surprisingly moving. [22 June 1988]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    An exhilarating update of "Flash Gordon," very much in the same half-jokey, half-earnest mood, but backed by special effects that, for once, really work and are intelligently integrated with the story.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    The result was one of Bergman's most haunting and suggestive films.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    A ferociously creative 1985 black comedy filled with wild tonal contrasts, swarming details, and unfettered visual invention--every shot carries a charge of surprise and delight.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    This dark, melancholic film is a reminder -- never more necessary than now -- of what the American cinema is capable of, in the way of expressing a mature, morally complex and challenging view of the world. [7 Aug 1992]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Though ordained from the beginning, the three-way showdown that climaxes the film is tense and thoroughly astonishing.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    With his perfect pacing, elegant narrative design, and depth of characterization, Richard Lester has made as good a matinee movie as could be imagined: it's a big, generous, beautifully crafted piece of entertainment, with the distinctive Lester touch in the busy backgrounds and the throwaway dialogue.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    It has wit, originality, color, warmth and formal intelligence. It tempers its escapist dash with a touch of darkness, and for all of its playfulness, never departs from a fundamental seriousness.... Something Wild is superbly unpredictable. [7 Nov 1986]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 67 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Though much of Naked Lunch is flip, hip and hilariously funny, it never wanders far from a profoundly melancholic undertone - Cronenberg's unshakable sense of loneliness, isolation and anxiety. [10 Jan 1992]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    David Cronenberg's The Fly is that absolute rarity of the '80s: a film that is at once a pure, personal expression and a superbly successful commercial enterprise. [15 Aug 1986]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Martin Scorsese transforms a debilitating convention of 80s comedy--absurd underreaction to increasingly bizarre and threatening situations--into a rich, wincingly funny metaphysical farce. A lonely computer programmer is lured from the workday security of midtown Manhattan to an expressionistic late-night SoHo by the vague promise of casual sex with a mysterious blond.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    Buñuel conjures with Freudian imagery, outrageous humor, and a quiet, lyrical camera style to create one of his most complex and complete works, a film that continues to disturb and transfix.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Dave Kehr
    A film so rich in ideas it hardly knows where to turn. Transcendent themes of love and death are fused with a pop-culture sensibility and played out against a midwestern background, which is breathtaking both in its sweep and in its banality.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    An excellent film, still as fresh as the day it was made.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    If Mr. Ghobadi's dominant theme is the devastation of the Kurds, his subdominant tone is one of strength, resistance and fertility.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    A Grin Without a Cat is a work of extraordinary journalism, but it is also a work of deft and subtle poetry, visual (in the rhyming of gestures and shapes across images and sequences) as much as verbal.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    A more concise and affecting summation of the Tibetan crisis would be hard to imagine.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    One of the most pleasant foreign films of the year, a funny, graceful and immensely good-natured work.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    No admirer of Mr. von Trier's work should miss this compelling rarity.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    A strange and funny film, smart, complex and difficult to shake.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    Carpenter displays an almost perfect understanding of the mechanics of classical suspense; his style draws equally (and intelligently) from both Howard Hawks and Alfred Hitchcock.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    At once highly naturalistic and dreamily abstract, playing out its mythic themes through vibrantly detailed characterizations (and remarkable performances by the entire cast). The Return announces the arrival of a major new talent.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    To watch the biggest stars of their time in casual conversation, trading riffs and passing bottles, without benefit of publicists, handlers and security goons is to relive an innocent, anarchic time in the entertainment business when music, not marketing, was at the center of the enterprise.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    It's by far the least controlled of Penn's films, but the pieces work wonderfully well, propelled by what was then a very original acting style.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    Levinson's dialogue feels fresh and improvised, yet it hits its mark every time, and the performances he gets are complex and original (particularly from Mickey Rourke, who plays a lothario with a late-blooming conscience) - enough so that Levinson's occasional forced "cinematic" effects cause barely a ripple in the smooth, naturalistic surface.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    Taking off from the format of a typical teenage sex comedy, Brickman deepens the characters and tightens the situations, filming them in a dark, dreamlike style full of sinuous camera movements and surrealistic insinuations. Brickman found a tone I hadn't encountered previously - one of haunting, lyrical satire.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    The film represents a studied, sophisticated approach to instinctual emotions: it's carefully, calculatingly naive, and amazingly it works.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    Dense, contradictory and distressingly honest, Valley of Tears is that rarity among political documentaries: a genuinely thought-provoking film.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Dave Kehr
    Experimental in form, it's also open and appealing in its vision of romantic redemption, an avant-garde romp that's also a great date movie. [8 Mar 1996, p.40]
    • New York Daily News
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    It's almost too rich in ideas for its own good: The sense of concentration and proportion isn't there. But it remains an astonishing, magnetic, devastating piece of work. [23 Sept 1988]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 93 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Irons' Von Bulow is easily the most attractive and entertaining movie heavy since James Mason's villain in ''North by Northwest,'' a figure with whom he shares a taste for elegant homes and wry understatement. [17 Oct 1990]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Graciously filmed by Martin Brest and imaginatively performed by Robert De Niro and Charles Grodin, the tired concept yields a steady stream of little discoveries and surprising insights that add up to some uncommonly rich comedy. [20 July 1988]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Hugely funny, but it's also liberating-precisely because it centers its aim on that cold, closed system and blows it apart. The straight lines are shattered; the empty spaces in the images are packed full until they burst. [2 Dec 1988]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Strange, funny and powerfully moving… Burton has found a way to move through camp to emotional authenticity, to communicate-through a concentration of style and an innocence of regard-a depth and sincerity of feeling that his deliberately (and often, comically) flat characters could not summon on their own. [14 Dec 1990, Friday, p.C]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Complex, knotty and at times even uncomfortable; its world has a weight and heft that makes its ultimate romanticism seem genuinely transcendant, genuinely magical. [14 April 1989]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    The film has undeniable power, but it's an unusual and unsettling power, a product of a collision between red-hot material and the cool serenity with which Kubrick observes and accepts it. [26 June 1987]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 52 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    And yet there is enough of a core of sincerity to turn even the most preposterous moments-such as the film's dream-sequence finale-into something moving and true: You buy the feelings, even as the situations degenerate into the ludicrous and absurd. [17 Aug 1990, Friday, p.C]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 54 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Directed with great skill and intelligence by Joseph Ruben, Return to Paradise, is a rare thing among today's movies a drama of conscience. [14 Aug1 998, Pg.51]
    • New York Daily News
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    A study of junkie culture from the inside (not a fashionable point of view these days), Drugstore Cowboy is funny, depressive and strangely noble, often all at once. [27 Oct 1989]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Broadcast News is the crispest, classiest entertainment; it has what Hollywood has been missing. [16 Dec 1987, p.8]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 50 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    Charlie, who owes an obvious debt to Chuck Jones' Wile E. Coyote, comes equipped with one of the most expressive faces in cartoon history: Bluth keeps his features-ears, snout, mouth, eyes-in constant flux, a beautiful blend of line and volume that represents the pinnacle of the animator's art. [17 Nov 1989]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 50 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    It's the film in which an entertainer at last becomes an artist, dealing with manifestly personal, painful emotions and casting them in a form that gives them philosophical perspective and universal affect. It's Spielberg's finest achievement, a film that will look better and better with the passage of time. [22 Dec. 1989]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    It's this balance of vivid performance and directorial detachment that allows Leigh to move freely between delicate sentiment and highly caustic wit; even in his most harshly satirical moments, he never denies the humanity of his characters.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Dave Kehr
    The Witches of Eastwick is filmmaking of a very high order; it's also a great time at the movies.