For 618 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 47% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 52% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 6.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

David Denby's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Capote
Lowest review score: 10 Arthur
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 47 out of 618
618 movie reviews
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 David Denby
    Trashy and opportunistic as some of it is, Training Day is the most vital police drama since "The French Connection" or "Serpico."
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Denby
    It feels fresh, almost improvised, mainly because Mills doesn’t drive his scenes toward an obvious resolution.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 David Denby
    Inglourious Basterds is not boring, but it’s ridiculous and appallingly insensitive.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 40 David Denby
    Never Let Me Go is in such good taste that we never feel any horror over the idea at the center of it.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 David Denby
    Babel is an infuriatingly well-made disaster.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 David Denby
    The movie is a mess, but it’s certainly not dull.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 100 David Denby
    Hyper-articulate and often breathtakingly intelligent and always brazenly alive. I think it's easily the strongest American film since Clint Eastwood's "Mystic River," though it is not for the fainthearted.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    There's a sourness, a relentlessness about the movie which borders on misanthropy. In both the social and the personal scenes, the conversational tone veers between idiotic pleasantries and fathomless bile, with nothing in between.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 David Denby
    The crud and petty desperation of The Cooler is enjoyable as atmosphere, and the movie is passionate. [12 January 2004, p. 86]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 David Denby
    An enormously enjoyable hybrid, a romantic comedy set at the center of a caper movie. But the froth arrives with steel bubbles--the tone is amused and mordantly satirical.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Chronicle becomes a cautionary tale: power corrupts. Yes, and digital power corrupts absolutely. Andrew's sense of decency disappears, and so does the filmmakers' sense of humor. [13 & 20 Feb. 2012, p. 120]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 David Denby
    Has some of the wittiest writing Sayles has ever done for the movies and some of the best acting he's ever coaxed out of his performers, and the picture is a pleasant, if unexciting, experience. [8 July 2002, p.84]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The actual robbery that the picture is based on is shrouded in mystery, and the screenwriters, Dick Clement and Ian La Fresnais, have engaged in a fair amount of entertaining invention.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The movie is not a bore, exactly, but it’s certainly a stunt and a disappointment, for at first the situation is provocative. [16 & 23 June 2003, p. 200]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    An effective political melodrama that induces a peculiar emotion--the bitterness generated by an old anger that has faded into dull exasperation and now flares up again. [8 Nov. 2010, p.92]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Among other things, Our Brand Is Crisis is about the failure of good intentions--a potent American theme at the moment. As the movie suggests, this failure, born of American arrogance, embraces liberals as well as neocons.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 David Denby
    When The Company Men stays with its real business -- the calamity of joblessness -- it is first rate. [20 & 27 Dec. 2010, p.145]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 30 David Denby
    Kill Bill is what’s formally known as decadence and commonly known as crap...Coming out of this dazzling, whirling movie, I felt nothing--not anger, not dismay, not amusement. Nothing. [13 October 2003, p. 113]
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    One may be horrified by these two, or laugh at them, but both horror and laughter give way to amazement at the human talent for survival.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 David Denby
    The movie holds one in its surly grip, but when it's over, few people, I think, are likely to be haunted by it. Futility may work as a mood in a short story, but in a full-scale movie it doesn't bear looking at for very long. (29 Oct 2001, p. 92)
    • The New Yorker
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 David Denby
    The plot, with its matched, escalating acts of revenge, may be a contrivance, but within that contrivance Changing Lanes plays earnest and well. [6 May 2002, p. 138]
    • The New Yorker
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 David Denby
    Observant and true. The pleasure of it lies not in its emotions, which are distinctly on the tepid side, but in the intimacy of its reporting. [28 July 2003, p.94]
    • The New Yorker
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    A genial, messy comedy of marital discord and mismatched lovers.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 David Denby
    Ayer should have dropped the movie-within-a-movie, which is confusing in an unproductive way -- we share the men's point of view without it. [24 Sept. 2012, p. 98]
    • The New Yorker
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 David Denby
    Tintin is exhausting, and, for all its wonders, it wears one out well before it's over.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Goodbye, Lenin! is often drab--the color is washed out, the lighting flat. Yet the movie is sweetly enjoyable as a sardonic elegy for a dream that went bust. [8 March 2004, p. 92]
    • The New Yorker
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Ends with a burst of movie-ish mayhem, and then a burst of sentiment, but when Brewer, Howard, and Ludacris stick to the bitter texture of South Memphis failure and success they produce a modest regional portrait that could become a classic of its kind.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 David Denby
    Compliance is a small movie, but it provides insight into large and frightening events, like the voluntary participation of civilians in the terrible crimes of the last century.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    No more than a shallow, style-mad entertainment, but it never flags or loses its balance, and, despite the theatricality of the staging and the acting, it’s precisely the materiality of the cinema--that makes us devour it with pleasure. [29 March 2004, p. 103]
    • The New Yorker
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 David Denby
    Damon may be too young, too unformed, to play an amnesiac. Gazing at that blank face, we can't imagine that Bourne has any experiences or memories to forget. [17 & 24 June 2002, p. 176]
    • The New Yorker

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