For 787 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 6.9 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

David Ansen's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 70
Highest review score: 100 Sideways
Lowest review score: 0 The Toy
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 51 out of 787
787 movie reviews
    • 66 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    World Trade Center celebrates the ties that bind us, the bonds that keep us going, the goodness that stands as a rebuke to the horror of that day. Perhaps, in the future, the times will call for more challenging, or polemical, or subversive visions. Right now, it feels like the 9/11 movie we need.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 30 David Ansen
    Flat, distressingly witless -- To put it bluntly -- the thrill is gone. Nobody did it better. But that was then.
    • Newsweek
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    Robert Zemeckis's movie is frustratingly uneven. When it's good, it's very good. And when it's not, it can be as silly and self-important as bad '50s sci-fi.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    As anthropology, it's fascinating, and everything about the production is first class. But the human drama at the heart of this movie is stillborn.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    Forest Whitaker, uncorking the power that he usually holds in check, gives a chilling, bravura performance as Ugandan tyrant Idi Amin, whose bloody regime slaughtered more than 300,000 people. This intelligent, sometimes gruesome thriller is based on a novel by Giles Foden.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    A schizoid action flick bogs down in lofty intentions.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 40 David Ansen
    Torn between moody grandiosity and cartoonish mayhem, Daredevil tries to have it both ways, and succeeds at neither.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 David Ansen
    Hilarious and captivating.
    • Newsweek
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 David Ansen
    Fails to rouse any passion. A potentially great subject is frittered away, though this being a Scott movie, there's style to spare.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    Tex
    Tex, a Walt Disney production, makes good on that studio's promise to return to quality family filmmaking. You don't have be 16 to be moved by it -- having been 16 will do. [02 Aug 1982]
    • Newsweek
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 David Ansen
    Wanted has one good plot twist in store (though it makes little sense), and its sense of humor about its own silliness keeps the fantasy afloat for a while. But as the body count rises, so does the portentous tone, and the relentlessness of Bekmambetov's overamped style becomes oppressive.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 David Ansen
    The Omen is a dumb and largely dull movie. No true connoisseur of kitsch will confuse the work of writer David Seltzer and director Richard Donner with the masterpiece of psychic manipulation contrived by William Peter Blatty and William Friedkin in The Exorcist, not to mention what the diabolical Roman Polanski made out of Ira Levin's Rosemary's Baby. [12 July 1976, p.69]
    • Newsweek
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 David Ansen
    It's a passionate, serious, impeccably crafted movie tackling a subject Clooney cares about deeply: the duty of journalism to speak truth to power. It also happens to be the most compelling American movie of the year so far.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 David Ansen
    Alternately enrapturing and exhausting, brilliant and glib, this is a "Romeo and Juliet" more for the eyes than the ears. [4 Nov 1996, pg.73]
    • Newsweek
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Red Dragon is certainly an improvement on “Hannibal.” It has something the Ridley Scott movie didn’t -- a good story -- and it will no doubt keep the franchise rolling in dough.
    • Newsweek
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    The images of war that Folman and his chief illustrator, David Polonsky, conjure up have a feverish, infernal beauty. Dreams and reality jumble together.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Day-Lewis, who imbues Jack with a ravaged, Keith Richards charisma, is once again extraordinary.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 David Ansen
    A hauntingly beautiful tone poem.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 David Ansen
    A hugely entertaining thriller shot through with dark shards of agony and paranoia. It takes nothing away from the original while delivering pleasures all its own.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    The tale is a bit too insular and claustrophobic for its own good: in the end these characters lack the depth and complexity to resonate deeply. The pleasures of The Dreamers stay mostly on the surface. But when the surface is as stylish and sexy as this, it's hard to complain.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 David Ansen
    An ambitious, intense, but overdetermined exploration of the varieties of ethnic intolerance.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Malick's magnificent, frustrating epic mixes fact and legend to conjure up a reverie about Pocahontas (Q'orianka Kilcher), her love for Capt. John Smith (Colin Farrell) and her crossing from one culture to another.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 David Ansen
    A piece of spectacular silliness, but that's not meant with disrespect. The key word is spectacular.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    Powerful images hook you immediately.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 David Ansen
    It succeeds in bringing O'Barr's comic-book vision to life, but there's little else going on behind the graphic razzle-dazzle and the moody, ominous soundtrack.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    Frances McDormand, as the lone female union rep, and Richard Jenkins, as Josie’s angry miner dad, cut through the predictability.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 30 David Ansen
    Irreversible takes an adolescent pride in its own ugliness. “I Stand Alone" told me something about the world; this one tells me more than I want to know about the calculating mind of its maker.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    Droll, sweet-tempered and lackadaisical, it's a shaggy-dog story with Nicholson playing the shaggy dog. It turns Western conventions on their heads not out of satirical anger but simply to charm the pants off the audience. A little less coyness, and a lot more John Belushi (as a Mexican deputy), would have helped. Still, at a time when most comedy comes straight out of the bathroom, the quirky, civilized pleasures of Nicholson's film are not to be sneezed at. [09 Oct 1978, p.94]
    • Newsweek
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 David Ansen
    His smart, raunchy movie offers no answers (how could it?), but it poses its questions with painfully hilarious honesty.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 David Ansen
    This visually stunning movie serves up generous dollops of designer creepiness.
    • Newsweek

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