For 625 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 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

David Denby's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Dreamgirls
Lowest review score: 10 Dogville
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 47 out of 625
625 movie reviews
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    It's an accomplished, stately movie -- unimpassioned but pleasing. [28 July 2014, p.78]
    • The New Yorker
    • 40 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Is it art? Not remotely. But, up to the final scenes, it’s a tremendous piece of engineering. After all, the narratives have to synch up visually, which can’t be easy to manage. And the hurtling force of Vantage Point is fun to watch.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The intricate baseball knowledge that gets passed back and forth among the characters in Trouble with the Curve is much more interesting than the moral simplicities that the movie offers. [8 Oct. 2012, p.87]
    • The New Yorker
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Lone Survivor will not please people exasperated by an endless war, but it's an achievement nonetheless. [6 Jan. 2014, p. 73]
    • The New Yorker
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Good summer fun, but it’s only about two-thirds the picture it could have been. Since Edward Norton has nothing to play against, the rivalry at the heart of the movie never heats up. [16 & 23 June 2003, p. 200]
    • The New Yorker
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Much of the writing is good, and the acting is superb, but the constant wrangling wore me out at times.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Buoyant and observant, 50/50 is a small winner; the director, Jonathan Levine ("The Wackness"), has a great touch, mordant but light-handed.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Singer honors a child's desire not only for adventure but for noble deeds, for loyalty and friendship. [18 March 2013, p.87]
    • The New Yorker
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    A major film without being a great film. It's a strange movie, and a stunningly pessimistic one, and the strangeness and pessimism connect it to other recent American films in ways that suggest that something unhappy in the national mood has crept into the movies.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Murray’s linking up with Jim Jarmusch is a case of Mr. Cool meeting Mr. Cool, and the result is intriguing and elegant, but not quite satisfying.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Jeremy Renner is the main reason to see Kill the Messenger.
    • 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.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Certainly holds one's attention, but it's a strange and grim experience, ice-cold and borderline pointless. [28 October 2002, p. 119]
    • The New Yorker
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The filmmakers register their point, but I don’t think it’s entirely parochial to note that, two decades from now, the American and Japanese children will probably have many choices open to them (including living close to the land), while the Mongolian and Namibian children are more likely to be restricted in their choices to the soil that nurtured them.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Stewart chose the great Iranian actress Shohreh Aghdashloo to play Bahari’s mother, but, with her tragic face and her magnificent contralto voice, she plays a tiny role as if she were in an amphitheatre.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    She's infuriating, but the movie, for all its morose impassivity, is beautiful and haunting.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Strange and off-putting, and hard-nosed types in the film business will no doubt dismiss it as a nothing. But, even if Bubble hasn't brought down the Bastille, the movie is far from nothing.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The movie feels not only like a trial but like a trial in absentia. [7 Oct 2002, p. 108]
    • The New Yorker
    • 83 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The movie makes it clear that, for all his snarls and outbursts, he is intelligent, candid, and easily wounded; that he is by turns inordinately proud and inordinately ashamed and, above all, intensely curious about himself, as if his own nature were a mystery that had not yet been solved.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Robert Altman, in a benevolent mood, has made a lovely ensemble comedy from Anne Rapp's original screenplay.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The movie is smart and tightly drawn; it has a throat-gripping urgency and some serious insights, and Scott has a greater command of space and a more explicit way with violence than most thriller directors.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The joke buried in Tabloid is that this sexual obsessive is very likely not a sexual person at all.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Lee Hirsch and Cynthia Lowen, the filmmakers who made the moving documentary Bully, don't try to answer any questions. They avoid charts and graphs, talking heads and sociology. Their approach is more direct and, perhaps, more effective.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    A lyrical throwback to such movies as René Clément's "Forbidden Games" (1952) and other works of the humanist European cinema of a half century ago. [12 April 2003, p. 89]
    • The New Yorker
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Sappy but engaging. [7 & 14 July 2014, p.95]
    • The New Yorker
    • 89 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The project lacks the variety of sensuous pleasures that a great movie has to provide.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    In serious roles, Weisz can be stiff-backed and righteous, but here, doing comedy, she appears to be a major actress eager to reveal everything she’s been holding inside.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Even though we can see it coming, this gruff, inarticulate, half-embarrassed love between men, arrived at after many setbacks, is one of the stories that action movies never tire of telling and that many of us, even though we may laugh it off the next day, still find moving. [17 & 24 June 2002, p. 176]
    • The New Yorker
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    The movie version of the hit Broadway musical Hairspray is perfectly pleasant--I smiled to myself all the way through it--but it’s not as exhilarating as the show.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 David Denby
    Menzel strings his sequences together with great affection and skill, but the movie, an absurdist picaresque, doesn't have much cumulative impact, and perhaps the hero is too much a lightweight to hold an epic together.

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