David Sterritt
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For 1,981 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 4.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

David Sterritt's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 65
Highest review score: 100 Jesus' Son
Lowest review score: 0 Barb Wire
Score distribution:
1,981 movie reviews
    • 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.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Smart and sumptuous.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    One of the great Bertolucci's most acclaimed films...Trintignant gives a legendary performance.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Everyone raves about this 1957 film -- and everyone's right.
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This is the only film Laughton ever directed, and he packed it with a mixture of eerie chills, ingenious suspense, and absurdist humor. It's a genuine classic.
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The legendary Mifune leads a superb cast, and Kurosawa's kinetic camera keeps the adventure sizzling with energy and wit from start to finish.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This masterpiece of poetic realism features one of Gabin's most renowned performances, a smart subtext about French colonialism, and enough exotic atmosphere to keep your head in the clouds long after the final scene.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Metropolis has a place in world history as well as in the annals of fantasy. Adolf Hitler was said to have loved it, and Lang eventually fled Germany for Hollywood when the Third Reich wanted him to run its movie industry. Few movies of any era offer so much varied food for thought, cinematically and politically. Its new restoration is a major motion-picture event.
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Among the picture's many surprises is a superb robbery scene filmed in a near-total silence that contrasts exhilaratingly with the noisy flamboyance of more recent films in this venerable genre.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    It's inexplicable that Wong's early masterpiece has been virtually absent from American screens since he completed it in 1991.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Wit, joy, imagination, and sensational mid-'60s music.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Too intense for the youngest viewers, but teenagers will enjoy it -- an ill-smelling "stink-god" character is almost worthy of a Kevin Smith gross-out movie -- and grown-ups should find it diverting, if not exactly deep.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Doesn't make it a masterpiece, but it's fun.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Like all masterpieces, it speaks to later ages as powerfully and intelligently as to its own.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Not a masterpiece, but definitely one of the year's most entertaining movies.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 50 David Sterritt
    Add a lot of dull acting -- except Sir Ian McKellen and Andy Serkis -- and you have an uneven movie with yawns aplenty.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Movies don't come more original, inventive, or outlandishly entertaining.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Barbet Schroeder directed the ingeniously made film, which weaves fact, hypothesis, and conjecture into a harrowing yet continually gripping and often highly amusing narrative. [12 Oct 1990]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 93 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The film may be too talky for action-minded viewers and too fantastic for more serious spectators, but it brings appealing twists - including a feminist sensibility - to the venerable martial-arts genre.
    • 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
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A profound film by a legendary director in the greatest period of his career.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Absorbing but disturbing documentary.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Yang favors a gentle and introspective style that shows how deep and strong everyday emotions can run. A memorable treat.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The credo of Italy's fabled neorealist movement was that movies rooted in real, unadorned experience carry more dramatic impact than studio concoctions can dream of, and this 1952 masterpiece exemplifies that argument brilliantly.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Still packs an entertaining punch with its blend of old-movie formulas, new-age philosophies, and video-game visuals. A small amount of new material, added for the 20th-anniversary reissue, is fun to look for but doesn't make much difference to the story or its impact. [Special Edition]
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Masterly by any measure.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The timeless fairy tale about a young woman who agrees to dwell with a mysterious monster, as interpreted in 1946 by one of cinema's most brilliant visual stylists and mythmakers.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A plan for a perfect murder goes wildly wrong in this 1958 melodrama by one of France's great filmmakers.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 63 David Sterritt
    Far from the movie of the year, the first installment of the long-awaited Lord of the Rings trilogy is an all-around disappointment.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This is as challenging as movies come, alluding to everything from philosopher Thomas Hobbes to the history of Western music.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This sometimes harrowing, often delightful drama stands with his (Sembène) most compassionate, colorful, and artfully filmed works.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Its refusal to draw solid lines between "good" and "evil" characters is more sophisticated than the psychology of most current commercial pictures. It's well worth a trek to a theater adventurous enough to show it.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Children may enjoy it, aside from the youngest, who might find it too weird for comfort. Its main audience is adults, though. And not just any adults, but those in the mood for venturesome fare that's both surreal and hilarious.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A glistening gem among caper movies, this impeccably elegant jewel-heist drama takes its title from Buddhist lore, its cast from France's great gallery of leading men, and its style from the unique blend of cinematic savoir-faire and brooding existential angst.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 63 David Sterritt
    Parts of the film are flatly directed...It certainly keeps the audience guessing, though, and few movies explode so many stereotypes. [31 Dec 1992]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 90 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The story raises hard moral questions relating to the relative value of human lives and the overwhelming debt that may be felt by those who benefit when others sacrifice. But the movie falls short of excellence because it doesn't so much explore these issues as finesse them in an action-filled climax.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The story is so complicated that the movie can't quite make it clear, but the picture has impressive energy and high-intensity performances from Kevin Spacey, Danny DeVito, and Guy Pearce.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Episodic and uneven, but it has moments of great emotional power.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Stands with the greatest science-fiction movies ever made.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This poetic and compassionate drama by Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan combines the intricate structure of his earlier movies with an emotional power that raises his remarkable career to a whole new level.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    It takes time to grow accustomed to the docu- drama's stylized approach, influenced by Bertolt Brecht and Jean-Luc Godard. But this nearly six-hour movie is generous with time.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Brilliantly acted, sumptuously filmed, and overflowing with mellifluous music.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    (Jonze and Kaufman's) work is so bold, funny, and original that it's hard to believe they aren't wide-screen veterans.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    All told, he's (Linklater) one of today's most versatile American filmmakers, and Before Sunset finds his light shining as brightly as ever.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Sharper and smarter than any animation since "Shrek 2," making it one of the season's supermovies.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Fugit gives a starmaking performance as the teenage reporter, and Crudup and Lee are excellent as the band's lead guitarist and singer, respectively.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Filmed and acted to near perfection, it's one of the year's most innovative and exciting pictures.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This territory is familiar if you remember the great BBC miniseries "Upstairs Downstairs," but Altman gives it a new twist with his restlessly roaming camera and incisively satirical approach. He's still near the peak of his powers.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Weir's offbeat directing makes the most of Andrew Niccol's inventive screenplay, which includes large doses of surprisingly sardonic satire aimed at today's entertainment trends.
    • 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.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Smart, funny, and splendidly acted.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This is epic filmmaking on a profoundly human scale, directed to perfection and magnificently acted by everyone in sight.
    • 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.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    It's great, fantastical fun.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Although the action tends to become melodramatic and even overwrought at times, the imaginative power of Campion's images and emotional insights (especially with regard to the heroin) rarely allow the story to seem artificial or exaggerated. [12 Nov 1993]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Stunningly acted. [21 September 1990, The Arts, p.12]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A complicated story that demands your full attention; Mr. Gondry unfolds it at a mind-bending pace. This alone makes it a hugely refreshing respite from ordinary multiplex fare.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    This pungently filmed 1947 melodrama doesn't rank with Clouzot classics like "Diabolique" and "The Wages of Fear," but it's full of hard-boiled charm and has a musical score that adds extra dimensions to its impact.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Wong has acquired a loyal cult following over the years, and Dupont's exquisitely filmed episodes show why.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    It's never been topped.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Has social, psychological, and ultimately mystical overtones that raise it leagues above most other teen-centered comedies.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 50 David Sterritt
    Too much repetition and an unconvincing finale take a toll on the film's overall effectiveness.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This great masterpiece of German film is evocative and inventive from its first shot to its last.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Cantet has rich insights into this material, and brings them alive through sensitive acting and powerful filmmaking.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Exhilarating doses of style, imagination, and sheer energy.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Brando made one of his most indelible impressions in this relentlessly dramatic, ever-controversial tale of loyalty and betrayal in the world of working-class unions.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Most moviegoers will leave buzzing about the climactic Battle of Helm's Deep. But in my eyes, this is Gollum's show more than anyone else's, even the special-effects wizards behind the scenes.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The suspense isn't exactly breathtaking, but there are some mighty fine laughs in this clever Claymation cartoon.Family fun for all.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 38 David Sterritt
    As before, the movie is more impressive for its finely detailed vision of Los Angeles as a futuristic slum than for its story, acting, or message. It's all downhill after the first few eye-dazzling minutes. [2 Oct 1992]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The director's cut of this 2001 cult fantasy is a deliriously subtle exploration of storytelling possibilities, and a deliciously wry teen-pic to boot. Brilliant.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The story is surprising, the screenplay is witty, and the animation is wonderfully creative. A super sequel.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 50 David Sterritt
    This romantic farce has a talented cast and energy to spare, but somehow the ingredients don't burn as brightly as one would expect from such promising ingredients.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A quintessential New York director made this quintessential New York movie in 1973, with Pacino at his best.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Timely, pointed messages about oppression and opportunity come poignantly through in strongly dramatic terms.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The filmmaking is meticulous and the ideas are endlessly thought-provoking.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Harrowing, extremely disturbing at times, but brought to the screen in dazzling pop-art images that make the movie's grim content very much worth watching.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    This is a lively, life-affirming documentary no viewer is likely to forget.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Brilliant, poetic, and utterly unique.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 David Sterritt
    Some will find the movie's sexual antics too explicit and unconventional for comfort.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A mix of war film, road movie, and romantic comedy-drama, this peripatetic yarn is less resonant than Ghobadi's beautiful "A Time for Drunken Horses," but it has enough energy to keep your eyes popping and your toes tapping.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Well worth seeing on the wide screen before its video release next year. It's guaranteed to take your breath away.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    A full-fledged masterpiece.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 50 David Sterritt
    The first half is full of verbal and visual surprises, but the later scenes are talky and dull, as if filmmaker Steven Soderbergh had lost interest in his subject and his characters. Which would be understandable, since the story often seems more calculated than heartfelt. [4 Aug 1989, Arts, p.10]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    A conventional dark comedy with moments of unexpectedly biting wit.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    The latest installment is packed with surprises and emotion for people who've seen earlier stages of the project, but even newcomers will be fascinated by the vivid glimpses it provides of everything from love and family to political action and the pervasiveness of class distinctions in British life.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    As slow-moving as the voyage it portrays,...a surprisingly complex view of contemporary life beneath its good-natured surface.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Anderson fulfills the promise of his inventive "Bottle Rocket" with this quirky, often hilarious comedy, and Murray gives his most uproarious performance since the groundbreaking "Groundhog Day."
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    It's an ideal match, and Eastwood deserves accolades as both director and star of this powerfully made picture.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Swank gives one of the year's most complex and hard-hitting performances in the demanding central role.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 50 David Sterritt
    Is this misogyny, as some insist, or a critique of misogyny, as others say? Many moviegoers, grossed out by the film's gothic approach to medical matters, won't watch long enough to find out which is the answer. [30 Sept 1988]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Piccoli gives one of the most nuanced performances of his distinguished career, but the primary star of the movie is de Oliveira, who unfolds the story with unfailing skill and sensitivity.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Directed by newcomer Todd Field, who has a sensitive eye and a knack for storytelling.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Ten
    Iran's greatest filmmaker is fond of stripping personalities bare through conversations they have while riding in cars. Here he pushes his favorite dramatic device to its limit.
    • 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
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    It's a picture marked by competence, not the boiling-over intensity that Frears and Thompson fans have anticipated. [30 Nov 1990]
    • Christian Science Monitor
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Unexpectedly subtle cinematic style.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    The picture's thoughtfulness and ambition make it unusually suspenseful, gripping, and disturbing.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    One of Almodóvar's most challenging pictures, jumping around in time and sending a large gallery of characters through a wide variety of situations -- will find him again at the peak of his powers.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 David Sterritt
    Smart, funny, stimulating.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 David Sterritt
    Loach has made more memorable films, such as "Raining Stones" and "Ladybird Ladybird," but his dramatic sense remains strong and his social conscience is absolutely unstoppable.

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