For 700 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 40% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 59% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 5.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Dave Kehr's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 56
Highest review score: 100 Singin' in the Rain
Lowest review score: 0 The Price of Air
Score distribution:
700 movie reviews
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Mr. Sawyer eventually overreaches, striving for tragedy with a grim, cautionary ending that seems meant to evoke "Frankenstein." But the film's offhand, homemade quality sustains a quirky appeal.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Though the film is far from polished, the force of its significance to Mr. Frey, as well as the urgency of its political message, give it some genuine impact.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Joins the small pool of films that have dared to use Imax to tell a story.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Bright, good-spirited and blissfully short.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    There isn't a lucid moment in it (and much of the dialogue is rendered unintelligible by Russell's subversive direction), but it has dash, style, and good looks, as well as the funniest curtain line since Some Like It Hot.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The filmmakers build an argument that is both intellectual and emotional, concentrating as much on the forensic evidence as on Ms. Rosario's passionate commitment to finding justice for her son.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    William Friedkin's remake of the French thriller Wages of Fear represents an above-average effort by the director of The Exorcist—meaning it's marginally watchable. Friedkin senselessly complicates the simple story—four men drive a truckload of nitro through a South American jungle—with a lengthy exposition and some unfortunate existential overtones. The rhythms are all off—it's either too fast or too slow—but most of the set pieces are effective.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    A strange, disturbing and yet occasionally quite funny cultural artifact from the new Russia.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    A competent, unpretentious entertainment destined to fill the after-school slot at shopping mall theaters across the country.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The 1980 sequel to Every Which Way but Loose, and a better film—smoother, more controlled, with more time for the casual elucidation of place and character. Though it's a loud, vulgar, and occasionally brutal comedy, it never succumbs to the fashion for facetiousness: Clint Eastwood always takes his work seriously, even in a relatively impersonal project like this, and there are moments of moving emotional candor amid the slapstick, flashes on loneliness, forgiveness, and loyalty.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Steve McQueen as a tres chic San Francisco cop, though the real star is his sports car. There isn't much here, and what there is is awfully easy. With Jacqueline Bisset, Robert Vaughn, Robert Duvall, and a chase sequence that achieved classic status mainly by going on too long; Peter Yates directed this 1968 feature.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    It's rich, stimulating thought in spite of itself. Lots of elegant clothes and settings, weirdly linked to a shock rhythm of tension and release. It's a movie dream turned into a movie nightmare, a wonderful idea the film doesn't know it has.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The material continues to carry its inherent emotional power and moral importance. As banal as the telling may be -- and at times, All My Loved Ones more than flirts with kitsch -- the tale commands attention.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Entertaining, lightly mocking documentary.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Ms. Gardos is not a particularly flavorful filmmaker, but she is an honest one.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Far more ambivalent and ambiguous film than Mr. Spielberg's. Both North and South are portrayed as brutal, abusive regimes that use their citizens as so much cannon fodder.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The film is a celebration of youthful romanticism and youthful nihilism, two philosophies that are often indistinguishable from each other where Nadja is set: Manhattan's East Village, with its tiny, secretive bars and tumultuous street life.
    • New York Daily News
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Ambassador Gregory Peck finds that he's adopted the Antichrist (and he's a cute little feller too), in the slickest of the many demonic thrillers that followed in the wake of The Exorcist. Richard Donner directs more for speed than mood, but there are a few good shocks.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The first two are total stinkers, but things pick up with Joe Dante's creepy, claustrophobic, and very funny study of a brattish kid who lives in a cartoon universe, and come slamming home with George Miller's final sketch about a paranoid airline passenger.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    AKA
    His (Roy's) informed contempt is highly entertaining, but he neglects some of the more problematical and perhaps more illuminating aspects of his story.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Walter Hill's existential action piece, rendered in a complete stylistic abstraction that will mean tough going for literal-minded audiences. Not quite the clean, elegant creation that his earlier films were, The Warriors admits to failures of conception (occasional) and dialogue (frequent), but there is much of value in Hill's visual elaboration of the material.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Dunye's salvation is her sense of humor. She's good at creating light, bantering dialogue, and there are a couple of sharp, satirical scenes.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Good-natured, mildly appealing video feature.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Robert Wise brings his Academy Award-winning sobriety and meticulousness to a pulp tale that cries out for the slapdash vigor of a Roger Corman.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The film doesn't transcend its genre, but it's an honorable achievement within it.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The film's mechanical workings are still impressive, but between the unsympathetic characters and the coldly precise direction, there is little here for an audience to clutch to its heart.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Emerges as an uncommonly sober, well-researched film of its type.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    This 1985 western does a decent job of developing some dry 80s humor without completely undermining the genre, yet Kasdan's considerable skills as a plot carpenter seem to desert him as soon as the story moves to the town of the title--the action turns choppy, confused, and arbitrary.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    An amiable, offhanded comedy about ethnic identity and last-chance romance.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The dual point of view is used effectively, though it's less valid as social criticism (where Penn's observations tend toward facile revisionism) than as an index of the uncertainty that characterizes most of Penn's heroes.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Director Ron Howard brings a quality of gentleness and whimsy to the performances, but basically this is a highly calculated project brought in by those two old pros, producers Richard Zanuck and David Brown (Jaws, The Verdict).
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    This is a bumpy ride, but one worth taking.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    As soon as the medallion appears, so do the digital maneuverings -- speeded-up movement, composite images, objects and people morphing into supernatural thingamajigs -- that undercut the genuine thrills of the genuine action.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Those seeking a serious sociological examination of the role of stock car racing in late capitalist America will probably want to search elsewhere, but audiences looking for a kick will find one -- almost literally -- in Mr. Wincer's work.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The essential humanity of the characters shines through, giving face and form to a subculture the movies have largely neglected.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Unfortunately, its inescapable comparison is to David Gordon Green's "George Washington," made the same year as Mr. Davidson's film but with a far greater sense of style and a more profound grasp of the fragility of young lives. Way Past Cool can't stand up to that kind of competition.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    John Boorman's 1981 retelling of the Arthurian legends is a continuation of the thematic thrust and visual plan of his Exorcist II, though the failure of that bold, hallucinatory, and flawed film seems to have put Boorman into partial retreat.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Zuniga's support is winningly low-key.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The film has no qualities beyond its formal polish--and its careful avoidance (or rather, displacement) of the moral and political issues involved can seem too crafty, too convenient.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Mr. Burger has a performer who can dart between stentorian self-assurance and cringing pathos, maintaining his character's ambiguity until the final sequence of this resourceful and ingenious entertainment.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Depending on your choice, the film is either an unpleasantly masochistic fantasy or an unpleasantly sadistic one.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    It's bleak, creepy, and occasionally terrifying. Studio pressure apparently forced Murch to back off from the full fury of his conception, but this is still strong stuff.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Emerges as an engaging if occasionally hokey inspirational melodrama about the importance of community in the face of life's disappointments.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Most impressive, and the only segment that dares to criticize the terrorists directly, is Mr. Imamura's contribution, the last part of the film.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Handsome, well-executed film that nonetheless feels a bit long at 111 minutes. Those who are already anime fans will certainly find it stimulating; but this may not be the one to convert the uninitiated.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Veers between the light naturalism of American television and the pulsing melodrama of Bollywood entertainment.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Its luxuriant, nearly three-hour running time allows lots of room for spectacular musical numbers and dramatic climaxes that are extended to the breaking point and beyond.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    I wanted to like it more than I did, but it'll do.
    • Chicago Reader
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Typical Nilsson mix of the audacious and the cringe-inducing.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    An enjoyable, noisy romp.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Here is one performer (Testud) whose features -- small sad eyes, sharp nose, wide rueful smile -- can sustain a feature by themselves.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Ken Kwapis' Dunston Checks In contains not a single surprising moment. But it is well crafted enough to squeak by. Kids should get a few laughs from it. Accompanying adults will be only moderately bored. [12 Jan 1996, p.33]
    • New York Daily News
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The movie is never less than entertaining, but it fails to satisfy—it gives us too little of too much. Oddly, much of its pleasure is in the acting, which up to this point hadn't been Carpenter's strong suit: Donald Pleasence, Adrienne Barbeau, and Harry Dean Stanton offer excellent turns.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Has the bad luck to come on the heels of Kathryn Bigelow's beautifully made and politically impassioned "K-19," making this submarine picture -- a relatively modest, low-budget affair -- seem skimpy by comparison.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The script is funny and observant, full of shocks of recognition, but for all his progress as a writer, Allen's direction remains disconcertingly amateurish. Still, it remains perhaps the only film in which Allen has been able to successfully imagine a personality other than his own.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Richard Attenborough's direction achieves that balance of impersonality and brisk pacing we've come to recognize as "professionalism," and he doesn't clog up the dancing with too many stylistic gimmicks.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Bill Murray is the star of this pleasant 1981 comedy, but the late-60s values he incarnates (skepticism, spontaneity, antiauthoritarianism) are seriously out of step with the values of director Ivan Reitman, who prefers conformity, loyalty, and even something a little like patriotism. As a result the second banana of this service comedy, the affable Harold Ramis, becomes its genuine dramatic center: his struggles to keep his buddy Bill in line have a strange urgency and poignance.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    As broad and cartoonish as the screenplay is, there is an accuracy of observation in the work of the director, Frank Novak, that keeps the film grounded in an undeniable social realism.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    For all of its simplemindedness and deck stacking, the film is distressingly well made—Pollack is no artist, but he has a glistening technique (there aren't many American directors left who know how to plan their shots for such smooth cutting) and a strong sense of how to hold, cajole, and gratify an audience.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Wyler lays out all the elements with care and precision, but the romantic comedy never comes together - it's charm by computer. [Review of re-release]
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    It is a sincere, thoughtful work, though not a very accomplished one.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    This story of a party girl (Audrey Hepburn) in love with a gigolo (George Peppard) allows Edwards to create a very handsome film, with impeccable Technicolor photography by Franz Planer. [Review of re-release]
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    [An] amiable, rambunctious New World production, aimed ostensibly at the teen trade but more obliquely and effectively at the new wave cult...It's more cleverly cut than shot—which means that it moves quickly and energetically even as the concepts and characters disintegrate.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Clearly understands its target audience of first-generation Indian-Americans and has its pleasures to provide.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    A generally effective sex comedy, distinguished by its origins (Brazil) and the considerable appeal of its star, Sonia Braga. (Review of original release)
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Informal, pleasant film that ably captures Mr. Traoré's spirit.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    There are several solid laughs and some excellent supporting performances. But this is a film to be wary of.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    She (Baur) has clearly earned the trust and respect of her subjects, the first qualification for any responsible documentarist, and they have repaid her with an intimate glimpse into their singular lives.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    This is compelling stuff, but there is something deeply distracting in the use of recreated material.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Walking Tall has no more fat on it than the Rock himself, a hulking yet curiously ingratiating presence who seems the most likely candidate to replace Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger as America's favorite living comic book character.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    By and large Mr. Hoch's portrayals are as harsh and authentic as a police photograph, but an occasional touch of sentimentality creeps in.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Not quite good enough to jump out of the pack of Asian swordplay movies but is too well crafted to sink into utter anonymity.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Has the sense of gritty, practical politics of a Japanese samurai epic combined with the high-flying stunt work and magical special effects of a Hong Kong romp. Ultimately this film by Yojiro Takita is satisfying on neither level, but not for lack of trying.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    One of the most technically proficient of David Cronenberg's early gnawing, Canadian-made horror movies, though it lacks both the logic and the queasy sexual subtext that made his still earlier work - "Rabid," "They Came From Within" - so memorably revolting.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The resulting compromise does not produce a perfect film, but it is a fine record of a classic production and an important reminder of an event that has not stopped echoing in American culture.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Minnelli's comedy had its serious underpinnings: by the end of the film, a girl had become a woman. By the end of Ms. Gordon's film, the girl is still a girl, but a girl with much cooler stuff, including a stately home, a butler and a cute British boyfriend.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    The film is at once a sort of Indian "Stella Dallas," which finds the heroine making sacrifice after sacrifice on behalf of her family, and a "Gone With the Wind"-style epic of social change.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Dave Kehr
    Sustains the charm of an early 60's New York romance.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    For an outside observer, Saints and Sinners doesn't make particularly compelling viewing, but Ms. Honor has given her subjects an excellent present on their big day: the ultimate wedding video.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    A wan, wistful Generation Y romance.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    The film gets by on the sheer good-naturedness Reitman is able to place in all of his efforts, though it doesn't seem likely to inspire the same level of affection as the original. Innocence is one quality that can never quite be recaptured. [16 Jun 1989, p.28]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    There is a genuine sweetness in Reitman's work that balances the innate cruelty of much '80s film comedy. But this time the gags are too feeble to provide a counterweight and the film tips into the cute, benign and pointless. [9 Dec 1988, p.A]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    This mild 1984 comedy about a mermaid (Daryl Hannah) who falls in love with a New York City yuppie (Tom Hanks) isn't at all hard to take (John Candy, in a supporting role, is hilarious and original, and Hannah has a pleasant naive charm), but its appeal is based almost entirely on regression—a thematic regression to infancy (now endemic to the American cinema) and a stylistic regression to the most lulling kind of TV blandness. No wonder it's relaxing: it's a lullaby.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    The film, too artfully conceived to deliver many overt shocks, often feels long and aimless.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Alien Nation is a sluggish, forced and hopelessly derivative action thriller, sporadically redeemed by the wit of its stars and the velvety sheen of Greenberg's night photography.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Fans of the genre -- or "gore hounds" as they are known in fandom -- will find plenty to enjoy in Mr. West's enthusiastic approach to his work.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Doesn't have many fresh ideas to contribute to the genre, though it is reasonably good-natured and delivers a handful of solid laughs.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Glen's willingness to give the action sequences a certain weight and seriousness produces some genuinely exciting moments, yet his work is everywhere undermined by the flatness of the characterizations and the uncertain architecture of the plot. Still, Maud Adams makes a nice impression and Roger Moore has shed some of his smarminess.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    The movie is as flat and plain as a television program, and most of the supporting characters (including Louise Fletcher as a kindly schoolmarm) seem equally two-dimensional, as if they had wandered in from the set of "The Andy Griffith Show."
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    It has a few good laughs in it thanks to Murphy, but mainly depends for its appeal on an uncomfortable manipulation of racial stereotypes. [04 Dec 1992]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Awakenings is a film that unquestionably succeeds on its own terms, though those terms are deeply suspect. It is a canny piece of false art, one that consistently swaps meaning for superficial effect. [20 Dec 1990, p.1]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Russell offers a relatively restrained, Gary Cooper-ish performance, though most of the laughs are left to the four kids-Brian Price, Jared Rushton, Jamie Wild and Jeffrey Wiseman-who crack wise with arch sitcom precociousness. And Hawn, batting her baby blues, does make you want to hug her-at times very tightly, right around the throat.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    As much as film buffs might enjoy recognizing references to "Motel Hell" and other drive-in classics, Mr. Zombie's encyclopedic approach to the genre results in a crowded, frenzied film in which no single idea is developed to a satisfying payoff.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    This sort of thing was considered high art not so long ago; now it seems forced and ponderously symbolic.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Modest, mildly engaging film.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    As in the Rocky films, Avildsen's only directorial strategy is to delay the final confrontation for so long that all the audience's pent-up frustration explodes with it. It's primitive, predatory stuff.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Shyer's direction of actors rises instantly to a level of cartoonish hysteria and descends only for occasional wet bursts of sentimentality. But as an exercise in ideological persuasion it works appallingly well, playing on deep-seated guilts and insecurities with a sureness of touch that may make it a hit with the audience it caricatures.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Pretty much of a mess, full of narrative gaps and characters who arbitrarily appear and disappear. But it is at least a sweet, good-natured mess, with none of the overcalculation and condescending cynicism the same material would almost certainly bring out in a Hollywood production.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    There is a crazed, dark poetry here, but Mary Lambert's direction of Pet Sematary captures none of it, and the film falls into a flat, frequently laughable literalism. [24 Apr 1989, p.C2]
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 22 Metascore
    • 50 Dave Kehr
    Instead of deepening the material, however, the narrative twists feel like purely formal interventions, intended to keep the film moving toward its foregone, heavily moralistic conclusion. Mr. Smith Gets a Hustler is faultlessly professional but finally slight.

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