Desson Thomson

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For 1,634 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 49% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 49% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Desson Thomson's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 All or Nothing
Lowest review score: 0 Formula 51
Score distribution:
1634 movie reviews
    • 79 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    We're really celebrating Hollywood's freedom to create biographies of anyone, no matter how high or low on the social ladder, and still come up with the same banal characteristics, messages and conclusions. In this sense, The People vs. Larry Flynt doesn't champion, so much as squander, freedom of speech.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Although it contains many visually compelling passages and some provocative moments, the movie is strangely banal and simplistic.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Roll past this casino.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Unfortunately, the drama operates on a see-through, easily shatterable metaphor: the frigidity of the WASP soul. [17 October 1997, p.N32]
    • Washington Post
    • 71 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    I would rather have a more interesting group of desperate people to spend my post-apocalyptic time with.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's so laden with foreboding, you want to get out from under it and gasp for air.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    A picture-book French film that's pretty and trite, rather than edgy and moving.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    While director Aronofsky pistol-whips your attention with his style, the characters (mostly relegated to human mannequins in Aronofsky's visual schemes) suffer big time.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    A rambling disappointment.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    Director McGrath retains the novel's highlights, but he slices everything to ribbons.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Everything is tearful confessions, angry interrogations and breakups. But there's nothing underneath.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Its long-winded denouement, in which Grazia runs away rather than be sent to an institution, doesn't bring the story full circle. It just extends it.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Feels like a manufactured Asian "Chocolat," which drives the label 'art house movie' even further into mainstream banality.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's just too lost in its own presumed self-enchantment.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Here was my question for most of this movie: Wha-? I was clueless. Did not understand. Count me among the stupid.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The film degenerates into an overly simplistic satire -- with moon-worshiping, Guatemala-visiting, lesbian aborters on one side, and fetally obsessive, meat-eating, gun-toting Jesus worshipers on the other.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Needs more than happy thoughts to get off the ground.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    In a movie as unrewarding as this, there's really only one burning question: When does the spanking begin?
    • 63 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    To introduce an archetype like this to western audiences -- as the world weathers culturally and religiously demonizing times -- may have been worth this whole flawed movie. Too bad the story didn't just start with him.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The story, which features an apparently lobotomized Guy Pearce as an opportunistic explorer and hunter who learns the errors of his ways, is deeply dull.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's just sort of trying.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    These dramatic shortfalls make us merely worried that two human beings are in danger, but not two compelling souls. There's your missing ingredient, the human X-factor.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Could have been a sensation if a director with a smidgen of moviemaking instinct had taken the helm.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It may give many viewers a licentious flutter, but the highbrow ingredient -- although it desperately wants to be there -- is missing.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    A crashing letdown.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Roos and director Herbert Ross pave the long and grinding road to self-fulfillment with miles and miles of counterfeit poignancy.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Although this script starts off with great zest, it's ultimately a disappointment.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    A pretty woeful affair...a sitcom disguised as a movie.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's hard to tell if this thing's serious or parody and, if it is parody, whether or not it's intentional. Is it a winky joke, for instance, to have lightweight performer George Hamilton as Pacino's business attorney, or just ridiculous casting? Hamilton's performance points to the latter.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's an eroticism of nastiness -- triple-X fare for dirty old men in raincoats. If you resist this sleazy gorefest, you'll be right to feel proud of yourself.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Mainly, Femme Fatale is really about De Palma's three favorite things: women, movies and women. And you can either share his guilty pleasures in all their living, breathing, power-edited, overextended glory, or you can get on with your life.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 10 Desson Thomson
    Love! Valour! Compassion!, an adaptation of Terrence McNally's Tony Award-winning play, which has piano music and exclamation points to spare, is excruciatingly predictable, creatively inane and almost offensive in its depiction of gay characters.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    After 9/11, few of us look at terrorist acts casually. It's insulting to watch this grandiloquent pornography, using shock value and Hollywood cliche to evoke poignancy.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    At best, the movie is a problematic chamber piece; at worst, a misdirected, slightly misanthropic pretension.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    If there's anything good to be said about Heights, it's Glenn Close's strutty, booming performance.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Though Hard Candy clearly believes pedophiles should be chopped into little pieces and buried in an unmarked grave, its only purpose is exploitative. Sure, it's a cautionary tale for all those sicko wolves out there, but it's nothing more than an unabashed lurk-and-dread fest.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    The scenario (written by Carl Binder, Susannah Grant and Philip Lazebnik) is disappointingly wan and obsequious.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's too bad Chan's imagination and delicacy were wasted in this movie.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    A disappointingly dull thud of a fantasy.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Even by its own please-the-mob standards, this movie is lacking.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    Unromantic, nonsexual and hellaciously dull.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    There's something hideously pretentious about the whole thing.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The story, a half-baked one about treachery and greed, meanders to an unsatisfactory ending with a punch line that, well, doesn't punch very hard.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    From the get-go, the story remains bogged down in its rather limited morass.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Has its moments. In fact, it has too many of them. At 2 hours and 20 minutes and with enough characters to take up a few floors at a big hotel, it feels about an act too long.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Suffers from melodramatic overkill.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's almost too dull to pan.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    This movie may appeal to the youthful, midnight-madness crowd, but there isn't enough in it to bestow it with classic B-movie glory.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Seems to avoid any kind of edgy, precedent-making attitude, some point of view that feels charged, divisive and consequently alive.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Should we really be so moved and uplifted that a horny, ignorant young man begins to join the human race? Not when our voice of conscience is an off-screen filmmaker issuing pseudo-profound, and ultimately banal, pronouncements about the true nature of love and seduction.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    So taken with its own love of cinema, it forgets to lead you down the necessary dramaturgical path to make you fall in love, too.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's too bad the filmmakers didn't take a breath, look at the rushes and see what a comedic gem they had. With just a few tweaks, The Merry Gentleman could have made a wickedly funny parody of the over-earnest, lyrically hard-edged indie movie. But it's too late for do-overs.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    I'd give this movie about half a miracle.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Soccer needs this movie like Georgia needed "Deliverance."
    • 55 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    In a movie whose texture is supposed to be hard-edged realism, the characterization seems a little too pat and jaunty.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    For all his patient, accumulative storytelling, Sayles yields little that doesn't feel trite or overly schematic.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 10 Desson Thomson
    It's uncompromisingly bad, single-mindedly off-target.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    So single-minded in its reach for fantasy, it becomes the genre's evil opposite: banality.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Gets more operatically farcical (most of it unintentionally so) by the minute.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Despite its intelligent agenda, swollen heart and fabulously epic surface, amounts to a didactic banality: a white guy's politically correct lesson abroad.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    There's no question the movie's entertaining. But the blatantly schematic depictions of black and white, liberal and hawk, and other tiresome dichotomies turn A Time to Kill into the moral equivalent of a cockfight.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The movie feels forced, cliched and derivative.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    If it weren't for Sharif's extraordinary presence, there wouldn't be a cherishable moment in the movie.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    A good-natured but failed experiment in meeting cute -- indie-movie style.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    But when mechanical plots are a drama's main engine, we look for something else to divert us, preferably good comedy. That's in short supply, unfortunately. And it's no fun to sit through the movie's retread Woody Allenisms.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    Feels razor thin. None of the characters is particularly noteworthy. And the revelations of deep-seated conspiracy in the usual privileged, closed circles are hackneyed and tired.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    The most screamingly obvious reaction to Gerry is: what a load of pseudo-arty you-know-what.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    I'd rather sit in bumper-to-bumper hell on I-495 for two hours than get caught in Traffic again.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's a glossified, cluttered parody of itself. Almodovar is no longer a burlesque auteur. He's a repeat offender.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    There seem to be about a half-dozen spiraling subplots that go nowhere in particular. But it's oh so hiply done -- at least, that's the idea.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 0 Desson Thomson
    The Devil's Own, which stars Harrison Ford and Brad Pitt, is so epically awful, it's practically homeric.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Equally earnest and unconvincing.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The actual movie is the cinematic equivalent of cheap Chinese egg rolls: all flour and cabbage shreds, maybe half a nibble of pork.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The film's moral commentary is De Palma redux: same old Brian enjoying the peeping, bringing us into the guilt zone, then saying shame on all of us.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    All dancing and hugging and no good.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    There doesn't seem to be much purpose to it except a half-baked notion that the histrionics of the mentally insane (or a moviemaker's idea therein) are eminently cinematic. They aren't.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    Insipid, by-the-numbers romance.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 10 Desson Thomson
    It's a triumph of vile over content; mindless nihilism posing as hipness.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    There's a little too much over-the-top drama, as well as superfluous detail, in this Icelandic film.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    It's about as deep as electronic white noise.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The kid chews up the scenery like a baby T-Rex, egged on, no doubt, by director Agresti.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    Devolves into such utter ludicrousness, the best response (other than avoiding the thing in the first place) is to laugh.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Becomes a strung-together collection of interesting, semi-interesting, boring and sometimes embarrassing (seemingly improvised) moments from the cast.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Fractured, tentative, oh-so-artsy and very much in the style of Wong's previous Hong Kong-set boy-meets-girl movies. But this time, the effect is contrived: a star-driven pseudo-indie affair that will please neither celebrity worshipers nor cineastes.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 10 Desson Thomson
    Let's not waste any time: This movie is just awful. Prime problem: Josh Kornbluth, the chubby, wild-haired, bug-eyed star.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Aside from the obviously Australian flavor to everything -- which can be entertaining at times -- there's no X factor to justify the whole exercise.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    It doesn't seem like overstating things to say that Eros becomes steadily worse as it goes along.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Fails because of its gratuitous rape and violence and also because of its pretentious and intellectually one-dimensional grounds, which make the violence at the end feel even worse.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    A brightly wrapped, ketchup-drenched mush-burger, it slides down the Zeitgeist esophagus like a slippery McPelican. You pay, you swallow, you drive home. You're left with nothing except, possibly, heartburn.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Yields the same sort of archetype and the usual results: De Niro's workmanlike in a dismayingly familiar role.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 20 Desson Thomson
    With conceptual misfires like this, Lee's best work recedes even more swiftly into the past.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    This is a one-note deal, and it doesn't take long before you want to, well, just move out and leave these characters in their rent-controlled limbo.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The fight between good and evil feels fixed in favor of Hollywood redemption.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Let's wait for a movie where they do get it all right: story, acting and dancing. It'll happen, just not this time.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    About as funny as digging your own grave in an unmarked part of New Jersey.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    There's nothing authentic about this London lad ... Nothing particularly likable either.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Instead of offering a perspective that, at the very least, laments a world where the flow of money hurts otherwise good people, Allen simply pushes the movie into an uncertain sinkhole between morality play and black comedy.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    The movie comes across as a political science course videotape rather than a movie to fully engage a general audience.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Although the acting is committed and sometimes stirring, most of the characters are about as one-note as the biblical archetypes Martin wants to get away from in the first place. "The Name of the Rose" this ain't.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Desson Thomson
    Dramatically and conceptually, the movie sits there, flat, naked and trying too hard with too little.

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