Dennis Harvey

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For 941 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 49% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 46% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 5.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Dennis Harvey's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 Listen to Me Marlon
Lowest review score: 0 The Hottie & the Nottie
Score distribution:
941 movie reviews
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This high-grade concert film will enthrall fans and amuse more open-minded newbies, though it suffers from the most dynamic material being largely clustered in the pic’s front section.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The lead performers, the brighter fillips in Daniel Taplitz’s screenplay and Marcos Siega’s (“Pretty Persuasion”) assured direction make this a pleasing item overall.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Harrelson shines, particularly in framing scenes with Sandra Oh as a tactful court psychiatrist.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Evaluating this project in conventional feature terms is a lost cause; relevant contexts are purely avant-garde and pornographic. Suffice it to say that helmer's careful attention to framing camera, music and content signal primary allegiance to Art rather than Smut.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The latest from the culty maker of “Suicide Club,” “Love Exposure” and last year’s TIFF Midnight Madness audience-award winner, “Why Don’t You Play in Hell?,” is so insistently over-the-top from the start that the results are just fairly amusing when they ought to be exhilarating.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    For a film with such a narrow scope, this one oddly refuses to ask some of the basic questions that might have enriched our understanding.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The fact that the films that serve as her models often sported the same flaws doesn’t excuse this fairly poker-faced spoof’s sometimes borderline-torpid pace and disappointing fade-out.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Zarcoff does a good job building tension.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A bright, snappy culture-clash farce in the mode of "Desperately Seeking Susan" and its ilk, Kiss Me, Guido plays gay and Italian-American stereotypes against one another to good-natured, crowd-pleasing results.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Fans excited to see John Carpenter back in bigscreen action after nine years' absence will find limited cause for joy in The Ward, a horror opus that briskly -- maybe too briskly -- charts ghostly doings at a nuthouse.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    It’s pleasant enough cinematic comfort food, but even so, you may be hungry again soon afterward.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Recycles familiar ideas, with just enough droll wit to score as a nifty normal-folk-doing-stupid-deadly-things comedy a la "Fargo."
    • 26 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The track record of SNL-drawn movies is dire ("It's Pat," "Stuart Saves His Family," "Blues Brothers 2000"), and this one stands just a peg higher, as an amiable, if flyweight, di-version.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Lutsik takes aim at reckless capitalism --- as well as the increasing Westernization of Russian filmmaking --- with a disquieting allegory that in both themes and aesthetic is an audacious throwback to pre-WWII Soviet cinema formalism.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The picture delivers enough of the expected goods, if seldom with the wit or panache of the series' best.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Respectable but unmemorable end result may suffer from comparison with the similarly themed, albeit differently angled, “Traffic.”
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Unspectacular but quietly absorbing.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Unlike the vast majority of rude bigscreen comedies these days, "Prison" may actually improve with repeat viewings, since its best aspects are offhand enough to be missed the first time around.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Despite the tale's real-life basis and a solid Ed Harris as their fictive equivalents' alcoholic dad, Touching Home emerges as a formulaic triumph-over-odds tale with too little distinguishing detail.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Even the most deliberately airy amusement can use more ingenious structuring and assertive personality than Pineiro is inclined to provide at this (still early) stage in his career.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Despite a second half that feels more routine than its first, Pride is a definite crowd-pleaser.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Shy on the celebrity-gawking (and celebrity input) that marks many fashion documentaries, and neither gossipy nor an objective appreciation of his impact and legacy, picture is a successful portrait on its own terms, save one: It's unlikely to excite much theatrical interest.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Pleasant, if mediocre family fare.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Sometimes spare to a fault (especially scriptwise), low-key effort nonetheless holds attention with its naturalistic, nonsensationalized approach.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This year's kinder, gentler "Animal House."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    An unusually low-key Filipino drama whose neo-realist air generally triumphs over the script's violent, tearful contrivances.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Its inspiring portraits of hardworking subjects make a fine case for raising the bar by rewarding excellence rather than punishing failure.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Outlaws & Angels trades in the lurid character psychology and crude ironies of the spaghetti Western — an idiom whose cynical worst-case-scenario view of humanity seems more acceptable to modern audiences than the good-shall-triumph faith of the traditional Hollywood western.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Picture's ambition, cogency and decent performances make up for its uneven aspects. Woody Harrelson has some especially good moments as a cop.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Siren is lively if occasionally rough around the edges, packing a satisfying amount of action and a couple of amusingly nasty surprises into its short running time.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This update of 1950s drive-in sci-fiers finds the right balance between icky, funny and scary, with sheer energy compensating for a script that could have used more parodic panache.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This entertaining-enough quartet of loosely interwoven terror tales falls right into the middle ground of horror omnibuses, with no outright duds but no truly memorable (or scary) segments either.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Whatever literary talent Leroy was praised for shouldn’t have been so quickly forgotten and dismissed by those who’d once championed it. However, that praise was won under false pretenses — and while you can criticize Leroy fans for claiming to love the writing when they really fell in love with the myth it came packaged in, you can’t blame them for feeling ripped off.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    If “Soul’s” script errs on the side of simplicity, it does effectively downplay the cliches inherent in its unambitious story arc. And the foregrounded local culture is always engaging, with meticulous but unshowy attention to period detail on all levels.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    It has a somewhat routine midlevel-cable-production feel. But the content is engaging, and the use of old movie clips to illustrate biographical details... is amusing.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Solid, straightforward docu should prove a durable broadcast and educational item for years to come.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    It’s not that “My Love” feels inherently dubious; it’s that its execution is just a little too smiling-through-tears slick to be swallowed whole.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This slick exercise about a housewife whose spouse might or might not be dead is effective until a downright maudlin close.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Overlapping with other recent documentaries, picture nonetheless presents a stimulating argument.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A well-crafted if incompletely satisfying drama whose character study intrigues but ultimately feels somewhat frustratingly underdeveloped.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This amiably dumb feature debut for New Zealand writer-director Jason Lei Howden could have used some additional polish on the scripting side to bump its bad-taste humor up from the routinely to the inspirationally silly.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Little in the way of a unified theme emerges to turn Joseph Levy’s feature into something more than a semi-random survey of restaurant life.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    AKA
    Always watchable yet ultimately self-defeating in terms of its tonal/aesthetic choices.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A cheerfully silly action fantasy.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The script doesn't wring many surprises or much character involvement from the premise, and the brothers' helming, while slick, is short on scares, action setpieces and humor.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A straight-ahead slasher pic with the big difference of an all-gay male character cast, Hellbent is fun -- if minor horror fun -- ably handled by first-time feature helmer Paul Etheredge-Ouzts.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Another satirical view of the everyday insanity of working within the Industry, slickly made New Suit adds no special insight to the subgenre.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Lacking any obvious thematic or emotional arc, compilation pic succeeds as a pure exercise in visual stimulus, its narcotic effect much amplified by Michael Gordon's thunderous, dissonant orchestral score.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Stitching together a quilt of stories involving disparate Angelenos in the mode of "Magnolia" and "Short Cuts" and myriad other crisscrossers, this somber drama is well crafted and watchable but lacks the distinctive story content, style and standout performances to become more than a serviceable reboot of familiar ideas.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The picture's creepiness factor is sufficient to rate this a notch above genre average.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Results are offbeat and amusing, but also a bit thin as the whole essentially amounts to one long shaggy-dog joke.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Never mind the inherent titular redundancy: The Last Exorcism Part II is a generally effective sequel to the 2010 sleeper that injected at least a little new life into the heavily taxed found-footage-horror subgenre.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This slacker prince (Hawke) comprises a sinkhole at the center of adaptor-helmer Michael Almereyda's otherwise compelling contempo update.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This revamp (which ignores several interim direct-to-video sequels Van Damme did not participate in) is a bit shorter, a tad more stylish, and utilizes the same clichés a little less ponderously.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    It’s admirably well-crafted within its mostly savvy limitations.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    None of this will be news to informed viewers, and the documentary's broad theme necessitates quick, superficial treatment of myriad underlying causes. But it's a solid, fairly even-handed spur for discussion that will be particularly welcome in classroom settings.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Loathe to mar his exquisite package with the least hint of vulgar commentary, Ancarani arrives at something that is at once luxuriously alluring and a little too like an advertisement for luxury products — dazzling, aloof, uncritical and fatuous.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A consistently intriguing psychodrama that may nonetheless leave many viewers feeling that it’s all buildup and scant payoff.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A giant data dump of diverse archival and interview materials shaped into an admirably cogent if cluttered two-hour whole, “Caught” provides a fascinating albeit extreme illustration of the intersection between fame, greed, copyright and technology in the internet age.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    While his static backgrounds and stuttering character movement aren't likely to win over traditional animation fans, Hair High reps the high end of this "Sick 'n' Twisted"-type toonery.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Those with just a casual interest will find it colorful if a bit undercooked in the human-interest department, with limited insight into what makes its subjects tick, and the occasional rivalries between them.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This fun if unmemorable occult thriller sports — all too faithfully at times — both the typical pleasures and shortcomings of the movies it pays homage to.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The potentially ludicrous story is handled artfully enough here to cast an eerie but not off-putting spell throughout, though the ultimate point is more than a tad murky, and the desired poignancy doesn’t fully come across.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Somewhat forced happy ending aside, the pic holds together well.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Loves Her Gun ultimately doesn’t quite cohere as one part slackerish social observation in a nicely turned mumblecore mode, and one part cautionary psychological thriller about the dangers of treating fear with a loaded weapon.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Ultimately there’s an intriguing arc here that rewards patience.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    If, overall, Obit is merely pleasant in a predictable, innocuous way, it’s nonetheless well-crafted and moderately educational.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Suffers in ways typical to such adaptations -- what was fresh and flavorful in anecdotal description becomes more familiar and sitcom broad in literal depiction.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This tale of a violently disillusioned medical student’s wade into the weird world of extreme body modification doesn’t develop all its narrative and thematic ideas to the fullest. But the polished pic is still outre and entertaining enough to please most jaded horror fans.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Zagar’s thesis — that overpowering media exploitation determined its legal outcome early on — is introduced in the very first shot, then hammered home harder the longer the pic goes on.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Pleasant if slightly pokey documentary.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Philip Guzman's film offers plenty of intriguing elements, even if the central characters eventually feel too underexplored to fully satisfy.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    At first seems like a pleasantly pat piece of verite advocacy for convention-breaking unions. But it gets really interesting once said relationship unexpectedly dissolves in ugly fashion, offering real-life voyeuristic appeal a la "Capturing the Friedmans."
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Though it can be taken at first glance as an archetypal “nothing happening” movie, there’s just enough going on here to suggest repeat viewings might reward curiosity.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    This is a solid if not quite memorable entry in the ever-expanding canon of survivalist undead cinema.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    10 Things doesn't take much time before ditching its pitch idea in favor of a mishmash of newer formulas, never quite settling on a cogent game plan or directorial tone.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Less an historical flashback than a present-tense valentine.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Skirting horror and black-comedy terrain without quite surrendering to either, the pic proves rather bracing even if it doesn’t hold up to much plot-logic scrutiny.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    There are engaging, articulate personalities here that maintain interest through a mountain of strategizing sessions and court reversals, though helmers Ben Cotner and Ryan White strike a rote note of tele-friendly inspirational uplift while risking tedium with too much repetitious content.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Although not entirely successful, this intriguing, above-average genre effort still reps an ambitious and resourceful debut for helmer/co-writer Scott Schirmer.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The first feature from new gay-focused production company Mythgarden, is a welcome exception in that it effectively dramatizes the issues without caricaturing or pillorizing either party.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Dani Menkin's documentary tracks his odyssey, which by nature is hard to be cynical about. Still, the feature feels padded even at 70 minutes.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A surfeit of harrowing on-the-ground footage during protest crackdowns, plus the protagonists’ testimonies, make for a frequently inspiring and exciting documentary. But helmer Greg Barker (“Ghosts of Rwanda”) also risks pretentiousness in various forms of stylistic and thematic overreach, while providing viewers scant explanatory info on the regional conflicts.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Accomplished visually and busy sonically, it nonetheless falls short with a story of rock ‘n’ roll demonic possession that scarcely begins to exploit the ideas embedded in its serviceable premise.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Won't linger in the memory long, but gives pretty good action eye-candy while it's going.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Benefits from blend of live actors with computer-generated effects and backgrounds. Feature doesn't add up to much more than an enjoyable novelty.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Mildly amusing.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Less than a home run, then, Intruders is still an efficiently engineered suspenser, with solid performances and a tight pace.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    He's a nondescript protagonist, his benefactors, and he's never truly in need; as is made clear at the start, he has a comfortable life to return to whenever he chooses. So the picture becomes simply the moderately diverting record of an offbeat vacation.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A sterling space cadet performance by Anna Faris floats the genial if slight pothead comedy Smiley Face, a distaff "Dude, Where's My Car?"
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Haaga and crew aren’t aiming for realism (let alone plausibility) in their raw-luck tall tale, but they straddle cartoonishness and cruelty evenly enough that what some will find hilarious may strike others as just gratuitously mean-spirited.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    A straightforward record of the lecture Gore has toured for years, juiced by elaborate graphics. An excellent educational tool, picture may prove an awkward fit for theatrical distribution.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Though The Discovery starts out with a great premise, its mystery dissipates over a somewhat tepid course as the concept ultimately heads in a direction we’ve seen many times before, and depends overmuch on chemistry that fails to materialize between stars Jason Segel and Rooney Mara.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Plays like a so-so middle chapter of an epic series rather than a fitting kickoff.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The point is not very clear, but there's an impressive weirdness to Mad Cowgirl that elevated it above more strained attempts at transgressive cinema.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    All the performances are very nicely turned in a movie that deliberately excludes any significant adult presence in order to immerse us fully in an adolescent world.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    Filmmakers' own left-leaning sympathies are occasionally felt around the margins, but Conventioneers achievement lies in its honoring the sincerity and passion on both sides.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    At least its failings aren’t formulaic ones — or perhaps they’re the fault of jamming in more fantastic-cinema formula than one modestly scaled film can support.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    The Nines arcs from witty Hollywood insiderdom to a climactic metaphysical leap that may leave many viewers nonplussed. Nonetheless, there's more than enough intelligence, intrigue and performance dazzle to make this an adventuresome gizmo for grownups.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Dennis Harvey
    While refraining from excess melodrama or overt preachiness, pic makes no secret of its dismay at this chapter in American history.

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