For 775 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 60% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 37% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 7.2 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

David Ansen's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 70
Highest review score: 100 Good Night, and Good Luck.
Lowest review score: 0 Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 47 out of 775
775 movie reviews
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    At its screeching, wall-breaking best, “T3” achieves heavy-metal slapstick.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    A tad dark for little kids, this one-of-a-kind movie delivers 80 minutes of idiosyncratic inspiration.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    Mandoki's gripping film may pull on the heartstrings too knowingly, but it's hard to forget the sight of the village’s children lying silent and still on every rooftop, praying the recruiting soldiers below will pass them by.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 100 David Ansen
    A superbly taut and well-made thriller that jumps from Geneva to Rome, from Paris to Beirut, from Athens to Brooklyn, each lethal assignment staged with a mastery Hitchcock might envy.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Using shadows and strikingly designed sounds, Pellington skillfully creates an atmosphere of otherworldly, invisible menace. Gere and Linney, both solid, dance around the edges of a romance.
    • Newsweek
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    No simple diatribe against capital punishment, it's a strong film, made stronger by two terrific performances.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Thanks to fine acting and its vividly unconventional protagonist, it pumps fresh blood into a conventional formula.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    When it catches fire, this great-looking movie offers hilarious diversions.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    A romantic comedy for an era of diminished expectations.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    Deep Blue Sea gives good rush -- earning its stripes as one terrific junk movie.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 David Ansen
    Tthough it is action packed, spectacularly edited and often quite funny, one can't help feeling that Carpenter is squeezing the last drops out of a fatigued genre. Ten years ago this would have been one wild and crazy movie; in this era of ruthlessly efficient entertainments, it's a rather one-note evening. [14 July 1986, p.69]
    • Newsweek
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Smart, informative and lively polemic.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    The first test of a horror movie comes not the morning after but in the midst of the onslaught. By these standards, Monkey Shines is a white-knuckle triumph. Romero's film has its lurid, nonsensical lapses, but it touches some deep nerves. It's as unsettling as anything he's done. [08 Aug 1988, p.66]
    • Newsweek
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 David Ansen
    This powerfully contained, painfully funny performance has to rank with the greatest work Nicholson's ever done -- This road movie gives you emotional whiplash, and you’ll be glad you went along for the ride.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Raises Hollywood's depiction of war to a new level.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    There’s not a whisper of melodrama or sentimentality in the way Moretti tells his tale, guiding us through the stages of grief with calm, devastating lucidity.
    • Newsweek
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    Ferociously intense, furiously kinetic, it’s expressionist film noir science fiction that, like all good sci-fi, peers into the future to shed light on the present.
    • Newsweek
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    What keeps this movie honest is the characters, each of them a mass of conflicting instincts, virtues and vices. You know Gonzalez Inarritu comes from outside Hollywood because he doesn't divide the world into heroes and villains.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 David Ansen
    Baby Mama is rescued by two scene-stealing veterans: Sigourney Weaver as the smug, patrician owner of the surrogate company, and a priceless, ponytailed Steve Martin as the self-infatuated New Age owner of Round Earth. These two aren't onscreen a lot, but the movie seems most fully alive when they are.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    Stone creates such a sizzling, raunchy, vital world that the cliches almost seem new.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    It's basically a mindless paean to goofing off, with interludes of dubious seriousness. [16 June 1986]
    • Newsweek
    • 28 Metascore
    • 30 David Ansen
    Criticizing it is like spitting in the wind, but at the risk of sounding like the spoilsport villain of the piece (a snippety liberal Washington bureaucrat, wouldn't you know), there's a smug, bully-boy spirit underneath this supposedly merry romp. The message is Go for It, and the theme song tells us 'Youv'e gotta have a dream to, make a dream come true," but what have our dreams come to? Breaking the 55-mph speed limit? In this movie, paradise is being able to land a Piper Cubin a busy city street to pick up another six-pack. Unfettered individualism has come to this: drive hard and carry a big Schlitz. [13 July 1981, p.81]
    • Newsweek
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    There is one reason, and only one, for anyone to check out Vertical Limit. The hanging-by-a-fingernail mountain-climbing sequences are spectacular.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    The nimble Hanks again proves his delicious way with a double take; Long is nothing if not likable, and Godunov is a supremely silly narcissist. If the filmmakers had trusted these performers more, and stuck closer to reality, things might have turned out better. Instead of a real-estate fiasco anybody could roar at in recognition. The Money Pit has been inflated into a noisy destruction derby. [21 Apr 1986, p.82D]
    • Newsweek
    • 61 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    James Bridges's film, which he co-authored with Aaron Latham, has a mood and rhythm of its own -- it's in no hurry to knock your socks off. You have to get to know the characters, just as it takes time for them to get to know each other. Then suddenly, when Bud and Sissy's premature marriage starts to fall apart, you find that you care, and the spell is cast. Bridges shows an extraordinary gift for directing actors, and he gets a string of marvelous, fresh performances. [09 June 1980, p.84]
    • Newsweek
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 David Ansen
    The superhero genre screams for a makeover, or at least a smart deconstruction, but Hancock isn't that movie. It just ups the foolishness ante.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    Living Out Loud is far from seamless -- the last third of the movie has a choppy rhythm and an ending that doesn't quite work -- but it's alive in all the ways that count.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Mann vividly captures the nocturnal pulse of East L.A. in this taut, confined game of cat and mouse. In the homestretch the thrills get too generic and farfetched for their own good. But the first two thirds are a knockout.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    Sweetness is not a quality one normally associates with Clint Eastwood, but true sweetness is precisely what Bronco Billy aspires to -- and occasionally achieves. At once sentimental, arch and harmlessly good-natured, Eastwood's latest is a romantic comedy in which Clint appears as the fast-drawing, trick-riding star of his own Wild West show. [23 June 1980, p.77]
    • Newsweek
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    The movie is, from start to finish, a hoot... Both a savvy satire of smalltown boosterism and an affectionate salute to the performing spirit. [10 Feb 1987, p.66]
    • Newsweek

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