For 1,352 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 49% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 0.6 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Jack Mathews' Scores

  • Movies
Average review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Letters from Iwo Jima
Lowest review score: 0 Swept Away
Score distribution:
1,352 movie reviews
    • 56 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    For sheer bravura film making, for creating a cartoon world with real air, flesh, blood and the exhilarating cycle of fear and escape, Dinosaur is tops.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    One of the most skillful, mesmerizing, tense and satisfying time-warp thrillers ever made.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    The best movie I've seen this year.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Among the funniest and most satisfying films I've seen in years.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Levinson is so skillful at developing personalities, even among the story's would-be villains, that by the halfway point of the movie, every gesture and expression has unexpected depth and texture. The performances are across-the-board superb.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Don't miss The Fast Runner. If you do, you will deprive yourself of not only one of the most intriguing feature-film projects in decades and enough plain-spoken anthropology for three credits at Harvard, but one of the most flat-out entertaining movies of the year.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    "Amadeus is about as close to perfection as movies get," I wrote in 1984. Now, it's 20 minutes closer.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    At times, Chicago has the feel of a revue, with the major characters taking turns at their own show-stopping numbers. If it's too much of a good thing, I say, bring it on.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    The Two Towers moves faster, covers more ground, has more action and -- with the introduction of the marvelous character Gollum -- packs some much-appreciated laughs.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    As joyously energetic now as the day it arrived.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    May be the best movie of the year.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    It's an antidote to complacency. The question is, whom is it trying to wake up?
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    A great movie -- and the best movie ever about the '70s rock era.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Universally appealing story that plays as well now as it did on opening day a half-century ago. Maybe better.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Turns everything we know about the contemporary world on its head, and substitutes it with one in which spirits, monsters, magicians and animals mix it up in a carnival of energy, good humor and freewheeling illusion.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    One of the most original and ultimately confounding mind games to reach the screen since "The Usual Suspects."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    As darkness falls over the movie landscape comes the year's darkest and best movie of them all - Alejandro González Iñárritu's 21 Grams.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    The most emotionally satisfying because, in addition to having both more intimate drama and more spectacular battles, it resolves all of the issues raised before.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    A masterpiece? Probably. Ingenious? Absolutely! Unforgettable? I'll see you at the 10th-year anniversary.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    The best comedy of 2004. In fact, it's so far the best movie of the year.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    The biggest little movie of the year - and one of the best ever about the news media.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    What a movie! This is how the medium seduced us originally.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Whether the movie will make you believe a shocking-orange stock car has a future with a lavender Carrera, it's more fun to follow than a televised freeway chase.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    America's favorite superhero reappears in Bryan Singer's Superman Returns, and all we can say is, "Man, oh Man of Steel, it's good to have you back."
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    A movie-movie of the first rank.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Though Borat has been likened to "Jackass," there's a huge difference. The "Jackass" movies are about extreme stunts. Borat is about interaction and gullibility, and its success is unique to both Cohen and to this one-time-only movie.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    In the year of the animated movie, this one soars above them all.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    Hudson, taking over the role of Effie played on stage by Jennifer Holliday, is in charge of Dreamgirls from her opening scene, blowing away Grammy-winner Beyoncé Knowles, Oscar-winner Jamie Foxx and anyone else who gets in her way.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    "Letters" isn't about numbers or the battle or even the morality of war. It's about the sanctity of life and how we value our own.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    A critic trots out the word "masterpiece" at his own peril, but there it is.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    The incredibly moving post-9/11 drama Reign Over Me proves that behind the funny guy facades of former standup comedians Mike Binder and Adam Sandler are a pair of very serious talents.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    A gorgeous, wonderfully inventive computer-animated comedy.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    A great big sloppy kiss of entertainment for audiences weary of explosions, CGI effects and sequels, sequels, sequels.
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Jack Mathews
    This year’s foreign language Oscar scandal – there is always at least one – is the snub of director Cristian Mungiu’s disturbing, masterful realist drama following two college roommates as they carry out plans for one’s black market abortion in Communist Romania.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A hive of broad, brilliant performances.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Funny and masterfully inventive.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A love story told from the point of impact, at the heart, and no conventional resolution could be more profound.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Remarkable first film.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    There is a little of all of us in their awkwardness, fears and neuroses, and we root for their success in the mundane as if they were ascending Everest. Elling is still in the running for 2002's most uplifting movie.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Showing as much courage and talent behind the camera as he has while acting in front of it, Roth has crafted for his first film one of the most bluntly graphic and disturbing movies ever done on the subject.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Parents, who are more apt to be bored by the simple story line, are going to be amazed nevertheless by the smooth, convincing animation that lends Stuart his lifelike physicality and expressive facial gestures.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Passes like an evening spent with friends.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Harris brings into focus a nearly forgotten success story, filling in another blank in the ultimate mosaic of the 20th century's greatest tragedy.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Kempner demonstrates how the star's success and dignified bearing inspired a generation of Jews to fight through the ethnic barriers in all fields.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Maybe you have to have experienced one of these anti-weather urban cocoons to appreciate the concept of the film, and the prickly people who populate it.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    For the initiated, the third time's a charm. For everyone else, it's just a scream.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Stamp, whose ability to make Wilson simultaneously coarse and charismatic is irresistibly entertaining.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Intimate, deeply affecting family drama.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Sensational...as authentic as news footage, and far more intimate.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    It's a slice of life, with all the trimmings, and one of the strongest films of the year.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Even if The Mummy is imitation Spielberg, it offers more bang for the buck than we're used to getting.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Go
    Darkly hilarious.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Perversely funny.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Strong stuff, compelling drama.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    One of the most inventive, funny and ultimately tragic coming-of-age movies in years.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The whole system was sadistic and indefensible, and the church, looking the other way as long as profits rolled in from the laundries, deserves the scorn that Mullan and his fine cast heap on it.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    As inventive as "Being John Malkovich," as psychologically quirky as "Ghost World" and as honest as the day is long.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    What we need to remember, what Black Hawk Down reminds us, is that there are no safe missions when you're chasing bad guys. Especially when you have to chase them down a hole.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The performances are all terrific, but Gene Hackman is close to a career best as the family patriarch Royal, the most useless man you can't help loving.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The Trials of Henry Kissinger serves as both a prosecution brief on the above charges and an unauthorized biography.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The actors are solid at every position, but Broderick, who seems to get better with each performance, is especially good at playing the impulsively self-destructive yet sympathetic loser.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The clear powerhouse in the new film is a scene where Kurtz, speaking with the twisted coherence of the true paranoid-schizophrenic, uses Time magazine articles and other references to justify his actions.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A powerful, deeply moving tale, immeasurably facilitated by the performance of relatively unknown Hilary Swank as Brandon...smartly shot and edited, and the performances are dead-on.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A sweetly hilarious romantic comedy about a soccer fan whose favorite pro team's unexpected success threatens to push him over the edge.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Dunst and Williams...turn ditsiness into a frenetic comic duet.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Based on the true story of the first emperor of unified China, could be downsized and told as an American Western.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The movie is over in a breezy 112 minutes, but it may be another half-hour before your sides quit aching.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    "Songs" is a delight. It's a visual feast and often hilarious.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Surges forward with barely a respite. It's like watching a propane factory burn, waiting for the tanks inside to explode, and when they do, we're right in the middle of it.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    This quiet yet jolting meditation on love, obsession, loneliness, friendship and fate has the quality to entrance you through a first viewing, and compel you to take its themes and characters home with you for further consideration.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Locks in on its self-destructive subjects so precisely, it's almost unbearable to watch.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    For Hobbitués and adventure fans of all other ages, it's the year's best thrill ride -- maybe the best film.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Hilariously inventive Hollywood satire.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    An audacious, snappy visual and emotional feast of dishes both familiar and fresh. It's the first really good movie of 2001.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Spider-Man is an almost-perfect extension of the experience of reading comic-book adventures.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A strong, gritty, powerful piece of film making, and one of the three or four best movies made about the Vietnam era.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Whether Adam Sandler can actually act is not actually answered in Paul Thomas Anderson's Punch-Drunk Love. But he's great in it.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Gently hilarious comedy.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Clever, compelling, funny and unpredictable, and it has a lollapa-looza of an ending.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Funny, insightful, unpredictable and blessed with pitch-perfect performances, Ghost World is one of the year's best movies.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The effects in "T3" are spectacular, and the action sequences -- particularly the fights between the good and bad terminators -- are exhilarating.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    May be the year's most derivative film, but it's also the most original.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Breathtaking.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A smartly written, confidently directed film that delivers big laughs while developing two of the year's most earnest characters and some of its most rewarding sentiments.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    School of Rock may be to Black what "The Nutty Professor" was to Jerry Lewis, or "Groundhog Day" was to Bill Murray - that rare, perfectly tailored opportunity to play against one's broadest impulses. Not to neutralize them, necessarily, but to tame them and turn them into something very human and charming.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A two-hour, one-joke comedy that never gets old, Stuck on You is the most mature, consistently funny and satisfyingly sweet movie in the rollicking careers of brother filmmakers Bobby and Peter Farrelly.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    A brilliantly spare and poignant tragicomedy that projects such savage self-criticism of China's "economic miracle" that the film has been banned at home.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    We're treated to two smashing performances from Morel and Blanc, and all of the mysteries raised before are satisfyingly resolved.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    As tawdry as this may seem, Bertolucci is not trying to one-up himself. He was 27 when the student riots occurred and very much a participant in a revolution that was both complex in its implications and naive in much of the behavior. He has caught that perfectly
    • 58 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    If you're at all curious about what it feels like to be inside a race car going 200 miles per hour at Daytona International Speedway, I don't think there's a better, quicker or safer way to find out than Simon Wincer's documentary.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Man on Fire, with a best-ever Denzel Washington, is the first (nonreligious) sure thing to hit the multiplex this year.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The strength of McKay's film is not in identifying a cultural period, but in giving voice to so many great theater people. Their passion is infectious, their stories are priceless and their humor is boundless.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The naturalistic dialogue is a masterful bit of writing, credited to Linklater and his "Sunrise" co-writer Kim Krizan, as well as to the two stars.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    If you're in the mood for a horror movie, this ought to do you.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    It's not as clever, or as consistently funny, or as well-cast as "Shakespeare in Love," but Richard Eyre's Stage Beauty is the most fun I've had with the Bard since that 1998 Oscar winner.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Ray
    Every once in a while, a performance pops out of a Hollywood movie that is so brilliant and unique to the matching of actor to role that it's impossible to imagine anyone else achieving it.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    Does a meticulous job of summarizing these notorious events, but it is the stories of Liuzzo's five children that gives it fresh emotional power.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    It's a sensation - both a milestone in computer-animation and a likely Christmas classic.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    The face-to-face interviews laced throughout the movie are fascinating and often laugh-out-loud funny. Ask people to talk dirty and you don't know what they'll say.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 88 Jack Mathews
    But there were few, if any, better performances in 2000 than the one Blanchett gives here, and Raimi's crafty blend of dramatic realism and supernatural knowledge is one of the year's best directing con jobs.