For 194 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 30% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 69% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 11.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Gary Arnold's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 52
Highest review score: 100 Never Say Never Again
Lowest review score: 10 Spring Break
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 53 out of 194
  2. Negative: 48 out of 194
194 movie reviews
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Arnold
    The disappointing thing about Streets of Fire is that it can't deliver on the promise of a tangy, sexy evening of stimulation. The failure is aggravated by the exorbitant scale of the production, which seems much too lavish for an atmosphere of B-movie squalor. [01 June 1984, p.B4]
    • Washington Post
    • 67 Metascore
    • 30 Gary Arnold
    The best reason to see The Rose is to be in a position to relish the inevitable parody on "Saturday Night Live." Here's a sitting turkey that virtually sits up and begs to be plucked. [8 Nov 1979, p.F1]
    • Washington Post
    • 34 Metascore
    • 30 Gary Arnold
    1941 represents an appalling waste of filmmaking and performing resources. As one would expect, Spielberg, who directed "Jaws" and "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," sustains a high energy level. But the energy is expended on material that is pointless at best and occasionally hateful. [15 Dec 1979, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 46 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Arnold
    The shocks are strictly mechanical and redundant, the script uncomplicated by incidental humor or character byplay. It comes as no great surprise when the killer is revealed to a be a Halloween clone and then allowed to vanish, aggravating the pathetic resemblance. The reviewers who made a fuss over Halloween have a lot to answer for. [25 Feb 1981, p.B12]
    • Washington Post
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Arnold
    After a fairly promising getaway, Romancing the Stone gradually chases its tail into enough melodramatic dead ends to deteriorate into an expendable runaround, all too easy to shrug off as a miscalculated clone of Raiders of the Lost Ark.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 30 Gary Arnold
    Class, a sexual disillusion acted out at the prep school level, would be represented far more accurately by the one-word title "Crass." [22 July 1983, p.C4]
    • Washington Post
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Arnold
    A powerful period setting might have taken up the slack, but Lynch doesn't impose the past as vividly as the theme demands. Nor does he place us in a position to appreciate Merrick's fears and longings as if they were our own. [17 Oct 1980, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Gary Arnold
    Splash betrays a slightly drippy side, but by and large it's a refreshing plunge into unabashed romantic fantasy and not to be missed for the sake of John Candy, who hits the screen like a playful fat diver cannonballing off the high board. [09 Mar 1984, p.D1]
    • Washington Post
    • 24 Metascore
    • 10 Gary Arnold
    Unfortunately, all too many paying customers will remember being suckered into the Derek remake of "Tarzan," which shortchanges every feature susceptible moviegoers must assume they'll find: tongue-in-cheek romance, exotic high adventure and generous scrutiny of Bo in the buff. Denying people the forms of amusement, notably erotic amusement, that the publicity suggests, Derek exposes a truly dangerous ineptitude.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Arnold
    Milius and his co-writer, Kevin Reynolds, commit a fatal blunder by jumping into combat sequences before we've scarcely had time to take in the idyllic heartland setting, a rural Colorado town called Calumet. [10 Aug 1984, p.B4]
    • Washington Post
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Arnold
    Mr. Mom has its share of bright lines and funny moments, but if you bring anything beyond trifling expectations to this role-reversal farce, starring Michael Keaton and Teri Garr as a couple obliged to switch homemaking and breadwinning duties, it will be difficult to avoid feeling shortchanged. [20 Aug 1983, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 57 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Arnold
    John Carpenter's remake of The Thing is a wretched excess. It's not that originals are too sacred to be reinterpreted. They're period pieces that would have to be tinkered with to appear contemporary. They've simply been unlucky with their tinkerers, who haven't spruced up the pretexts without laying waste to the accompanying human interest, wit and thematic suggestiveness. [25 June 1982, p.C3]
    • Washington Post
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Arnold
    Sufficiently attractive and absorbing to sustain the fond delusion that Charles' pursuit of the mystifying Sarah might culminate in a revealing, conclusive confrontation. [02 Oct 1981, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 42 Metascore
    • 25 Gary Arnold
    If any one made a respectable effort to invest this story with authenticity or tension it is not apparent on the screen. Even the big spectacle, the demolition of a dam, is going to look unimpressive to moviegoers who've already been to Superman and seen the identical illusion depicted with far more skill. Force 10 is a mission that should probably have been aborted. Instead it's been allowed to abort on the screen.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Arnold
    Directing from his own screenplay, Alan Alda displays an alarming aptitude for the comedy of manners at its most trifling and synthetic. [22 May 1981, p.F1]
    • Washington Post
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Arnold
    The most coherent thing about the new action thriller Blue Thunder is its eagerness to succeed and its rabble-rousing spectacle of stunt flying and aerial combat. Blue Thunder, a chase melodrama with police helicopter pilots as the good guys, transposes the salty tone of The French Connection and Dirty Harry to a chopper squadron in Los Angeles. [13 May 1983, p.B1]
    • Washington Post
    • 63 Metascore
    • 90 Gary Arnold
    One of the snazziest, wittiest productions in the history of the serial.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 25 Gary Arnold
    The finished film obliterates whatever promise of novelty and human interested existed in the basic idea of Belinski's culture shock. If the rabbi's odyssey was embryonically appealing, the filmmakers have nurtured it along pact from an elephant trying to hatch a robbin's egg. [27 July 1979, p.B1]
    • Washington Post
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Gary Arnold
    Despite its excesses, "The Howling" has some tricks and jokes worth howling about. The sexual undercurrents in the werewolf myth have been made playfully explicit, especially in the sultry, voluptuous form of Elisabeth Brooks, cast as a nympho werewolf named Marsha. When she ambushes a victim in the woods, they change forms in the course of coupling strategically obscured by a blazing campfire in the foreground -- a deliberate howl of a sex scene. [13 March 1981, p.C1]
    • Washington Post
    • 13 Metascore
    • 10 Gary Arnold
    If you aren't feeling so generous, it's pretty obvious that the movie is not only a stinker but an inexcusably corrupt stinker, dependent on the indulgence of a public slavish or naive enough to feel honored when old pros content themselves with smugly amateurish shtik. [29 June 1984, p.B5]
    • Washington Post
    • 52 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Arnold
    An acceptable scene-setter, Carpenter reveals glaring inadequacies as a storyteller. [15 Feb 1980, p.C3]
    • Washington Post
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Gary Arnold
    At once warmly earthbound and nobly starstruck, it should give receptive spectators a savory pick-me-up. [13 July 1984, p.E1]
    • Washington Post
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Gary Arnold
    Christine does indeed suffer from the preposterous, low-octane nature of the devil-car pretext. But this satanic nonsense is saved from strictly facetious appeal by a few sensational pictorial effects, notably the sights of Christine speeding after a victim while engulfed in flames or miraculously repairing her own battered body, and by the no-nonsense performances of an excellent cast, especially Keith Gordon as the obsessed and transformed Arnie Cunningham.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Gary Arnold
    Profanely funny, wised-up and heroically antiheroic, North Dallas Forty is unlikely to please anyone with a vested interest in glorifying the National Football League.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Arnold
    Over the Edge is an oafishly made movie that claims to deal with a documented case of adolescent unrest in an authentic upper-middle-class social setting, then manipulates the situation only for hypocritical suggestions of teen-age vice and picturesque sprees of teen-age violence. [04 Mar 1982, p.C13]
    • Washington Post
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Gary Arnold
    A generous entertainment of its kind, Any Which Way mixes plentiful portions of gauche, robust action and comedy with frequent musical interludes. [17 Dec 1980, p.E1]
    • Washington Post
    • 61 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Arnold
    Slap Shot comes at you like a boisterous drunk. At first glance it appears harmlessly funny, in an extravagantly foul-mouthed sort of way. However, there's a mean streak beneath the cartoon surface tha makes one feel uneasy about humoring this particular durnk for too long.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Gary Arnold
    Moonraker, the newest James Bond spectacle, is a cheerful, splashy entertainment. The curators of the Bond museum do not surpass themselves with this exhibition, the 11th in the series, but they haven't fallen down on the job either. Moonraker is a satisfying blend of familiar ingredients, from the highly polished to the barely adequate. [29 June 1979, p.C1]
    • 57 Metascore
    • 30 Gary Arnold
    Although the material is conventionally manipulated to provoke terror by exploiting Cujo as a mad dog--a four-footed Jaws as a shameless matter of fact--moviegoers are likely to feel too appalled at the way a sick animal is systematically neglected.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Arnold
    It becomes apparent during the stuttering course of the movie itself that exploiting a nuclear power plant as an effective deathtrap in a doomsday thriller requires more than melodramatic wishful thinking. [16 March 1979, p.B1]
    • Washington Post

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