David Sterritt

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For 1,993 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 53% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 45% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 3 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

David Sterritt's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 65
Highest review score: 100 Grin Without a Cat
Lowest review score: 0 Head Over Heels
Score distribution:
1993 movie reviews
    • 72 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Pungent, opinionated, outspoken.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Bruce Willis is bruisingly good as the hero and Brad Pitt is suitably zany as the activist who dogs his trail.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    His readings of his own work are especially thoughtful, moving, and provocative in the best possible ways.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Frequently funny, sometimes sad, often electrifying.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Deeply personal, morally alert, and highly entertaining.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Miller shows terrific talent as a director with a sharp eye for images, a keen ear for dialogue, and a refreshing willingness to take storytelling risks.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Chabrol's filmmaking has rarely seemed more assured, elegant, and intelligent.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Scott has the courage to let the imaginative story unfold at its own leisurely pace, and it's not surprising that the acting is excellent, considering that he's among the very best American screen actors.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Stunningly smart, genuinely disturbing film.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    When he's good, Mr. Mamet is very good indeed, and Spartan stands with the best work he's done. It's fast-moving, unpredictable, and as tautly, tightly wound as thrillers get.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Leaving aside Huston's bland acting and a few other flaws, Sayles's politically charged drama raises a rousing number of issues and ideas, inviting us to ponder them and draw our own conclusions.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Illuminating and alarming.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The film's approach is highly instructive, deeply moving, and geared to deploring the racism that breeds violence rather than reactivating old hatreds.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Traveling from the tragic to the comic, this multifaceted film is richly acted and imaginatively directed.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The movie is woven with care and complexity, again confirming von Trotta's place as one of the world's greatest female filmmakers.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Dustin Hoffman gives the inspired performance that launched his movie career, and director Mike Nichols shows a gift for social satire that has never glistened quite so brightly since. [Review of re-release]
    • 63 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Faucher's filmmaking is exquisite, Naymark's acting is luminous, and superb use of music lends a crowning touch.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    At once dreamily surreal, acutely intelligent, and strikingly tough-minded, this pitch-dark dramatic comedy recalls David Lynch and "Donnie Darko" while remaining fresh and original to its core. A stunning directorial debut.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A deliciously weirded-out picture by Guy Maddin, a deliciously weirded-out Canadian filmmaker.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Wit, joy, imagination, and sensational mid-'60s music.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This movie equivalent of Robert Rauschenberg's artwork "Erased de Kooning" is funny, ornery, and ultimately inspiring.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    As a nonagenarian, de Oliveira is the world's oldest working filmmaker, and still one of the best. This is a lovely, lively, timely treat for the eyes and mind.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    One thing few will disagree on is the quality of the film's acting, especially by Gael García Bernal as Guevara and Rodrigo de la Serna as his friend. Both effortlessly embody the footloose, sometimes feckless quality of this "On the Road"-style adventure.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Witty, contemplative, and sublimely beautiful.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Like many Altman movies, this is less a dramatic story to follow than an atmospheric environment to visit.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Gilliam has rarely been more inventive, energetic, or just plain funny.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Indelible images and brilliant use of unconventional music make this a nonfiction film that must be seen – and heard – to be believed.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A riveting new documentary about the Arab-run Al Jazeera network, reminds us that news programming can vary so widely from place to place that journalistic myths of "objectivity" and "impartiality" seem more naive than ever.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This is a rip-roaring adventure combining edge-of-your-seat battle scenes with vivid historical details and more fascinating characters than most action movies dream of. Add heartfelt acting and Russell Boyd's atmospheric camera work, and you have the adventure movie of the year.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Supercharged with an energy and ingenuity that "Run Lola Run" once had a patent on.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    What counts isn't the convoluted plot or exotic characters -- it's the brilliance of Suzuki's cinematic style, articulating the action with eye-boggling color and split-second editing effects.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A compulsively watchable movie that's also a provocative inquiry into the ability of the criminal-justice system to determine culpability and truth.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Payami's gentle comedy captures a subtle range of human feelings through a quietly inventive visual style that embodies the best life-affirming tendencies of modern Iranian film.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    One of the great Bertolucci's most acclaimed films...Trintignant gives a legendary performance.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A skeptical view of George W. Bush's chief political strategist, Karl Rove, using argumentative strategies common to agenda-driven documentaries.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Filmed to perfection by the great Christopher Doyle and others.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    In short, they don't make 'em like this one anymore. Viewing it is like taking a time machine to a movie age that was more naive than our own in some ways, more sophisticated and ambitious in others.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The movie is flawed by implausible psychology and moments of weak acting. But it's more than redeemed by Lee's passionate ideas about America today.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The visual style is at once deliberately archaic and slyly postmodernist, slinky and sensuous from first frame to last.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Understated acting and brilliant use of wide-screen black-and-white cinematography.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Tsai's cinematic style is unique: He unfolds his stories in long, static shots that let you discover their surprises and mysteries on your own. And that's great fun. What Time Is It There? is perky, entertaining, and one of a kind.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Suspenseful, surprising, and psychologically rich.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A plan for a perfect murder goes wildly wrong in this 1958 melodrama by one of France's great filmmakers.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    In the Mirror of Maya Deren, creatively written and directed by Martina Kudlacek, is an eloquent memorial to her unique accomplishments -- and an excellent introduction for those who have yet to discover them.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Kidman, Moore, and Streep do some of their best work, backed by a first-rank supporting cast.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The acting is superb, the filmmaking is imaginative, and the story never goes quite where you expect.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    You may become a cinemaniac yourself after sitting through this beauty.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A riveting re-creation of three world-changing collapses: those of the Nazi party, of militarized Germany as a whole, and of the Führer who guided them into self-destructive ruin.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 91 David Sterritt
    I find it the most adventurous and imaginative American film I've seen this year - and also the weirdest.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 91 David Sterritt
    Tim Robbins gives a strong performance in this first-class horror yarn, which has a surprisingly strong political edge.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 91 David Sterritt
    In many ways, though, Gremlins is ingenious. Gizmo yanks at your heartstrings with both furry fists, then sits out a few scenes while suspense builds, then plunges back with more vim than ever. The small-town setting, right out of a gushy Frank Capra movie, manages to be timeless, nostalgic, and slightly ridiculous all at once.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 91 David Sterritt
    Back to the Future doesn't exactly leap out of the starting gate, and some scenes are strung out by gimmicky editing. But the story picks up steam as it goes along, and the last third is especially full of speedy surprises. [3 July 1985, p.23]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 57 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    The story is slender, but the Brazilian settings are exquisite and lilting tunes by Antonio Carlos Jobim cast a spell over the entire enterprise.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Has a mixture of strengths and limitations often found in historical epics: lots of eye-filling action and spectacle, little in the way of psychology or human interest.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Some will find the movie's sexual antics too explicit and unconventional for comfort.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    A thriller so tricky that figuring it out is half the fun.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Most of the acting is as real and warm as the characters themselves. And the streets, shops, and living rooms of Brooklyn have never seemed more inviting. [29 Jan 1988]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 80 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    As the uptight banker, Robbins does some of his subtlest acting to date. As his hardened but resilient friend, Freeman is simply miraculous, giving the role so much depth, dignity, and good humor that you feel that you've known this man forever. [27 Sept 1994]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Leaves out portions of John Irving's novel that would have given it more balance and perspective, but the acting by Maguire and Caine is first-rate by any standard.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Bird isn't an easy film, and it doesn't always make an effort to be likable. But it's a dazzler - at least as good as "Round Midnight,'' and that's saying a lot.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    To say it right out, The Bostonians is the best movie I've seen all year.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    The film should captivate anyone with a taste for bold cinematics, unpredictable storytelling, and pitch-black humor aimed at the worthiest of targets: a self-involved and self-congratulatory, industry that often gives lip service to art while worshipping the bottom line. [10 Apr 1992]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Many belly laughs.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    A powerful ending lends a strong emotional charge to this prettily filmed drama, but too much of the story is taken up with romantic clichés about the everyday challenges of childhood.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    The plot is lively and the dialogue packs many good laughs.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    True, traces of his bad habits show through at certain moments, especially near the end, when a long and lachrymose scene plunges into Spielgerian sentimentality of the gooiest kind. But before that unfortunate point, Schinder's List serves up three full hours of brilliant storytelling. That's as humane and compassionate as it is gripping and provocative. [15 Dec 1993]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    The movie is artful to a fault, with too many characters sitting in perfectly arranged, immaculately lighted rooms and talking a lot. It contains near-classic sequences, though, and splendid performances. [28 Sept 1990]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    The picture has fine ensemble acting and superb Italian scenery. It would have more power if it were shorter and tighter.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    JFK
    Controversy and all, JFK is one of the year's most powerful and provocative films.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Splendid acting helps Jordan achieve most of his goals, although some may find the romantic and religious elements an uneasy mixture.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 83 David Sterritt
    Beverly Hills Cop is an action movie and an Eddie Murphy vehicle first, but Brest's dramatic intelligence surfaces often enough to make a welcome difference in what could have been an ordinary crowd-pleaser. [13 Dec. 1984, p.35]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The picture is more sociologically instructive than emotionally involving, serving as a document of contemporary Irish life rather than an ordinary inspirational story.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The barometer for whether you'll enjoy Amélie is whether you liked "Moulin Rouge" last summer. If snappy visuals, tangy colors, mood-drenched scenery, and a good-hearted heroine make you as happy as a box of Parisian chocolates, it's definitely for you.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The movie is sociologically rich, if not very memorable in the personalities it depicts.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The acting is fine, the filmmaking is honest, and the class-conscious story couldn't be more timely.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The result is fine fantasy fun.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Some may find the movie too crowded and preachy to serve as a meaningful history lesson, but it will delight anyone who thinks our cynical age could benefit from recalling the vigorous idealism and venturesome artistry of a bygone era.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    An artful blend of '70s detail and dreamlike moodiness makes Coppola's first movie an exceptionally promising directorial debut.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Imagine a bolder "Bully" blended with a more probing "River's Edge" and you'll have some idea of this little drama's strong dramatic and emotional power.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Don't expect much from the scratch-and-sniff "odorama" gimmick; the mischievous John Waters set a higher standard for that novelty in "Polyester" (1981).
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Leconte justifies his vaunted reputation by lending freshness and feeling to what could have been a gimmicky tragicomedy.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Barry Levinson's dark comedy is sly, funny, and unnerving.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Isn't just a double whammy, it's a whammy squared - a goofy, stylish heist movie that'll steal moviegoers from other pictures.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Some of the film's points are made a bit too heavily, but the subject is as timely as it is timeless, and many of the performances strike a pitch-perfect balance between parody and passion.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Has a graceful simplicity that many will find hard to resist.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Splendidly acted, sensitively directed.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The movie makes up in sweep and splendor what it lacks in psychological depth and dramatic impact.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The influence of Danish filmmaker Lars von Trier looms heavily over the whole film.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    This unusual romantic drama is sensitively acted by a well-chosen cast and subtly directed by Cox.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Siegel calls it a talking-heads film about the talking cure, and that pretty well sums it up. The nonfiction scenes are most interesting, and could have easily sustained the whole picture.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The movie works fairly well as a pitch-dark comedy, and very well as a dead-on satire of upward mobility and its discontents.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Quite restrained for what's basically a horror movie, and very well acted.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    It's not a pretty picture, but it won't be soon forgotten by thriller fans with nerves and stomachs steely enough to take its violence in stride.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    This cleverly structured Argentine heist movie isn't as original or ingenious as it tries to be, but it's fun watching the chicanery veer down one unexpected pathway after another.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Deliciously acted and good-humored to its core, it's one of the summer's very best surprises.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The sequel is more exciting and surprising than the 2002 original, thanks largely to Molina's excellent acting. Only the strenuously comic scenes fall as flat as one of Spidey's leftover webs.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Patrick McGrath's novel provides a solid and suspenseful story, even if it loses much of its bite in Mackenzie's hands.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Pacino's performance in People I Know is the best thing he's done in ages.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Brilliantly filmed in his usual transfixing style, Kubrick's last movie pleads for alertness to the temptations that assail human nature from within and without.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    This well-acted melodrama paints a convincing portrait of its Montana milieu, and its best scenes suggest real insights into the paradoxical attitudes toward masculinity and sexuality that American men often feel compelled to assume.

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