Gary Goldstein
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For 470 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 60% higher than the average critic
  • 9% same as the average critic
  • 31% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Gary Goldstein's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 58
Highest review score: 100 Night Will Fall
Lowest review score: 0 Don Peyote
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 78 out of 470
470 movie reviews
    • 81 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Though it's a decidedly arty piece, Leviathan, named after the biblical sea creature, also lacks much in the way of traditional beauty or splendor. However, the immersive shots of those swooping and circling sea gulls are quite something.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Recently deceased master filmmaker Claude Chabrol's 50th and final feature, Inspector Bellamy, proves a sadly bland footnote to an illustrious and influential career.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Only the Young rarely coalesces into anything more meaningful than a casual collection of moments. Maybe that's the point.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Producer-director Markus Imhoof tackles a hugely vital subject, but the film's loose structure and lack of a specific through-line don't make for the clearest intake of its, well, swarm of information.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    What emerges is a vague, often chilling impression of an unpredictable opportunist and provocateur who may not even be sure himself.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Boy
    Writer-director and co-star Taika Waititi ("Eagle vs Shark") never builds much momentum for his largely uneventful if sometimes inventive story.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    That writer-director Jessica Hausner moves things along at such a glacial pace and fills her velvety frames with the equivalent of museum-quality oil paintings instead of with living, breathing humanity, only adds to the film's turgid quality.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The result is a kind of quiet Scandinavian cousin (OK, twice removed) to "Home Alone," in which patient viewers will find sporadic rewards.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    As it stands, "Terms" proves too uncertain.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    As for the so-called "food compositions" seen here, like the film itself, they're more impressionistic and artistic than enticing. For a far more satisfying cinematic meal, check out the similarly themed "Jiro Dreams of Sushi."
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Unfortunately, Dylan Mohan Gray's slow and steady exposé never quite manages the propulsive gut punch its incendiary subject demands.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The young filmmaker rarely digs beneath the harsh environment's many fraught surfaces. He simply lets his cameras be his guide.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    While often affecting and absorbing, the film proves intellectually and contextually light. This is especially true given a leisurely running time that could have easily accommodated more dimensional probing.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Smartly, the filmmakers minimize their topic's punchline potential. But even though the running time is short, the movie feels stretched out.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Ambitious, sometimes clever but largely sputtering, The Mafia Kills Only in Summer works better as a childhood memory piece than as an adult tale of love and larceny.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The product is more pop vanity project — and one that's a bit late to the party — than onion-peeling dissection.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Unfortunately, there's a lack of structure, context and point of view to the largely gray, grim, hardscrabble world presented here.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    The elder Makhmalbaf, who wrote and directed, puts many spins on this ethereal mood piece — it is by turns poetic, impressionistic, metaphorical and even a bit trippy — without satisfying such genre basics as structure, depth and resolution.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Honest and unadorned though the film may be, it's ultimately just not that involving.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Chittenden and Tzu-yi are expressive actors, but, like the film itself, are hamstrung by the project's self-imposed confines.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    [It's] too bad Cindy Kleine, the documentary's producer-director-narrator — and Gregory's wife — didn't better organize this rangy survey of the eclectic actor, theater director, artist and raconteur.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    For a movie about art and artists, it's not a particularly visually inspired or vibrantly crafted work. Still, Foulkes... holds interest with his off-kilter narcissism, obsessive creative process and frank views on his place — or lack thereof — in the art world.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Cailley never truly builds a narrative head of steam, resulting in periods of logy pacing and diffused focus. Still, the strong leads, several amusing moments and a clutch of intriguing character bits sketch what might have been.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The cast does what it can with — and clearly self-improves upon — the essentially thin, at times choppy material.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The largely engaging class-reunion dramedy 10 Years allows audiences to pretend they went to high school with the likes of Channing Tatum, Justin Long, Rosario Dawson, Anthony Mackie and Kate Mara.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Despite its gorgeous soundtrack, historical sweep and wealth of archival material, (the film) is weakened by sluggish pacing and an overly detailed, increasingly narrow focus.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Unfortunately, this well-acted cautionary tale is hampered by a lack of visual finesse and a script in need of a narrative rethink and a dialogue polish.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Though unevenly told and at times too fanciful for its own good, Electrick Children marks an intriguing feature debut for its risk-taking writer-director, Rebecca Thomas.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Though Torn contains its share of convincingly lived-in moments, there's a heavy-handed quality to both Jeremiah Birnbaum's direction and the script by Michael Richter that often undermines the movie's potential to truly grip and move.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    It's impossible not to root for these driven, high-spirited participants - and for the longevity of this invaluable program.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Although What If nobly attempts to honor and embellish the tropes of the genre rather than reinvent them, the filmmakers get tripped up on their own good intentions and uncertain comedic instincts.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Despite the film's unvarnished emotionality and even-handed messaging, Courtney never seems to have found an appropriate focus, resulting in a work that's less urgent and involving than its intense subject matter might have dictated.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Although children may enjoy the animal action (there's also a fun pelican and a yellow sea turtle) and parents might appreciate the movie's genuinely sweet moments, this is exceedingly mild entertainment.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The pervasive historical reenactments and voiceovers, however, while clearly well-intended, often turn this otherwise vital film into an uneasy hybrid of authenticity and artifice.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Kid-Thing proves as disturbing for what it is as for what it's not.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Skims a host of provocative surfaces without truly dissecting the self-absorbed playboy.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Sweet, slight and frequently familiar, Geography Club, based on Brent Hartinger's novel about sexual identity among suburban teens, often feels as if it's circling its expiration date.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Until being young and gay is a nonissue for everyone everywhere, these kinds of stories will always have their place.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    To his credit, writer-director Nathan Morlando has crafted a stylishly shot and evocatively designed period piece. But it's the dashing, quietly charismatic Speedman who proves the main draw, holding our attention even when the movie doesn't.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Despite his cogent finger-pointing, nifty graphs and succinct highlighting of recent climate change history, longtime followers of the hyper-partisan topic may not find much terribly new or revealing here.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    This underdeveloped, lackluster glance at brotherhood practically demands a response of "Is that all there is?" at its 70-minute fadeout.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The inventively shot and constructed documentary For No Good Reason is an absorbing look at the unique, surreal work of British cartoonist Ralph Steadman.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Kundo: Age of the Rampant is an often entertaining if overlong look at the last days of Korea's Joseon Dynasty.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Despite the Mexican American comic's engaging presence, amusing observations and deft imitations, "Fluffy" is a standard-issue comedy concert film far better suited to a 90-minute cable TV slot than the big screen.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Given the number and range of kids in view, there's a limit to how much specificity can be jammed into one movie.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    A lovely performance by Ethiopian supermodel-actress Liya Kebede as supermodel-activist Waris Dirie works wonders to elevate this uneven, occasionally awkward but often absorbing film.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Given the subjectively interpretive nature of scripture and ancient religious history, which informs most of the Christian-centric debate here, the result is an often dense, contradictory discourse.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The movie's intended audience will likely be satisfied by its parade of gory mayhem, cheap thrills and groan-worthy dark humor. Everyone else: You're on your own.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    It's no "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial." (What is?) But on its own modest terms, the alien adventure Earth to Echo is a lively and likable knockoff that should divert, if not exactly enthrall, tweens and young teens.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Despite the visual and cultural accuracy, Ping Pong Summer is missing an elemental magic and vibrancy; a kick factor that makes the picture's endless pop throwbacks (break dancing, cassette tapes, giant boom boxes) seem more tackily forgettable than sweetly nostalgic.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Well-meaning and, in the end, sweetly redemptive, Sassy Pants would have worn better with more depth, energy and, yes, sass.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    It's a privilege getting to know these determined, inspiring seniors, to whatever extent Gaynes allows. But a more deeply revealing, fully candid approach would have made for a more satisfying cinematic excursion.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The movie contains enough warmth, humor and nostalgia to prove an affable if unremarkable snapshot.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    A stylish, serviceable recounting of Saint Laurent's life from the late 1950s through the '70s. But watchable as it may be, this drama lacks intimacy and urgency.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The movie's raison d'etre, its many highflying, wildly violent, often digitally enhanced kung fu fighting sequences, are edited with so much sleight of hand they may evoke more eye rolls than gasps. But the hard-working sound design, effectively stark visual palette and propulsive score do manage to impress.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    writer-director Andreas M. Dalsgaard takes such a low-key approach to presenting the film's vital, potentially involving topic that viewers may find themselves more inspired to take a snooze than a stroll.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    This "Theorem" is all sizzle, zero steak.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    For all the talent up on the screen — and one can't fault the performances — the movie just doesn't deliver.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Director Jack Plotnick and his co-screenwriters Sam Pancake, Jennifer Elise Cox, Kali Rocha and Michael Stoyanov fail to nail a satisfying theme, narrative or purpose.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    At a mere 75 minutes, this often amusing, uniformly well-acted movie had the leeway to more fully explore both the script's showbiz gambit and its romantic roundelay.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Despite much archival and news footage, along with ample face time from that initiative's most ebullient supporter, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, the contest lacks the kind of inherent drama and tension that could have helped quicken the movie's measured pulse.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Aside from a few missing transitional beats and one too many coincidental encounters, the picture's fluid, zigzagging sexuality and emotional high-diving prove largely credible and diverting.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Although first-time feature writer-director Julius Avery may aspire to become a sort of Aussie Michael Mann — and perhaps lays an apt foundation here to do so — he has a ways to go in developing the kind of characters and world we can solidly invest in.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    As for the title, it's a nod to the jazz music that Don's off-the-grid dad shares with his more buttoned-up son. But, like most everything else here, it feels more contrived than authentic.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The accompanying trove of archival footage and photos, however, helps break the occasional monotony; the juxtaposition of these elderly vets with snapshots of their 1940s-era, uniformed selves is always affecting.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The film's overall presentation...feels a bit too cloistered and the subject perhaps too limited for feature-length attention.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    For poker fans only.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Bram, who also narrates (and writes, with co-director Judah Lazarus and Adam Zucker), may be earnest in his desire for enlightenment. But his approach feels overly self-serving; too much "Me," not enough "Kabbalah."
    • 47 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    It also features deaths by strangulation and immolation as well as a nasty bit with a flying severed limb.Kids may be less put off by all that, though, than by the film's uninspired hand-drawn animation, visual flatness and elongated running time.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Alternately silly and provocative, strained and funny.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    (A) stirring, if inconclusive documentary.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Writer-director siblings Jen and Sylvia Soska allow their film to turn slack and unfocused after an enticingly lurid, wickedly tense first half.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    There's a heft to the proceedings that keeps us invested even when the story's various strands start to unravel.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The documentary Craigslist Joe fulfills its unique premise - without providing much in the way of stakes, obstacles, tension or, frankly, greater meaning.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Starts off feeling clever and original but turns silly and diffused as its convoluted story spins out.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Unfortunately, by the end, thanks to a misguided use of a few offensive slurs against gays and African Americans, the whole thing turns needlessly ugly, undermining the goodwill Cross had mustered.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Sumptuous visuals, vivid emotional beats and memorable turns by Bichevin and Hoeks effectively compensate for the verbal sparseness.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Momoa creates an involving if relaxed pace, one whose moody rhythms are infused with a kind of soulful spirituality.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    A one-man band known as Makinov — he wrote, directed, produced, shot, edited and ran sound here — has done a pretty decent job in the chills department using a simple story, small cast and largely contained location.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    For all his attention to the exactitude of creating righteous cocktails, Tirola never quite nails a specific structure, focus or theme.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Alternately ambitious and simplistic, lively and bland, the French-produced adventure Mia and the Migoo never fully pinpoints its intended audience or many ecological messages.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    The film's main misstep, however, is its unconvincing use of celebrity voices to re-create various speeches and letters... Though well-intended, their inclusion proves a needless distraction in an otherwise smart and dignified presentation.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Statham's broody charisma and veteran cinematographer Chris Menges' ("The Killing Fields") eclectic views of contemporary London help hold interest, even as we ponder what Knight is really trying to say.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Seasoned pros Allen and LaPaglia are terrific as longtime mates forged together in an unexpected game of cat and mouse.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    This sour spin on "My Best Friend's Wedding" (crossed with a pale dose of "The Big Chill") proves unsatisfying not only because of its unlikable characters and often contrived conflicts but for the thoroughly implausible bride and groom at its core.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    This brief, loosely-knit film never builds any empathy or tension.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Both well-timed and oddly late-on-arrival, the good-natured documentary Electoral Dysfunction attempts to lay bare the irregularities behind the American voting system but, for some, it may feel too lightweight and coy for genuine effect.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    It all makes for a family therapist's dream scenario, but an otherwise choppy and predictable memory piece.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The result is a well-meaning checklist of a film that lacks sufficient charm or off-the-field vigor to fully score its intended goal.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Courageous, proves a particularly clunky, tunnel-visioned vehicle whose overbearing, overlong script nearly smothers the movie's quibble-free message.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The new installment is, at best, a serviceable creep show, one with far more chills than thrills.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Salomé and co-writer Natalie Carter offer some explanatory psychology, but the complexities remain underdeveloped. Still, you won't be bored.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 40 Gary Goldstein
    Weakly developed characters, a lack of substantive tension and an ending that's more startling than sound round out the minuses of this earnestly motivated but undercooked morality tale.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    A melodramatic third act strains to reconcile the film's disparate parts, and the feel-good ending is not quite earned. Still, the film offers a few lessons for those inclined to hear them.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The result, while sincere and nicely evoked, feels choppy, familiar and, despite the script's heavily stacked deck — and a few harrowing episodes — lacks sufficient momentum.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Some eerie answers are revealed, and there are a few decent left-field jolts en route. But the plot is hardly airtight — at times the holes are downright gaping — and viewers will likely have their fair share of questions once the film's final corner is turned.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    The film often defies expectations but also winds up sidestepping the kind of trapdoors and quicksand that might have made the ride more exhilarating.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 50 Gary Goldstein
    Although the meta-style conceit is fun, it doesn't fully kick in until the film's midpoint. Until then it's a sluggish, fairly dour ride.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Even if this largely contained movie remains more low key than frantic, it features enough well-executed bursts of tension and strong emotional beats to hold interest.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Gary Goldstein
    Skippable 3-D aside, it's a serviceable, limber follow-up to 2010's "Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief."

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