For 1,365 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 0.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Jack Mathews' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Hairspray
Lowest review score: 0 Dischord
Score distribution:
1,365 movie reviews
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    There's solid chemistry between Cruise and the stunning Newton, a superb actress previously restricted to such ethnic roles as Sally Hemings in "Jefferson in Paris" and the title role in "Beloved."
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    So far beyond Bollywood, I think it's set in the suburbs of L.A.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    While the football sequences are carefully constructed, the sensation we get from the blizzard of images and teeth-jarring sound effects is of having our head used as the football.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Shines an admiring light on some lawyers who endure low pay, terrible win-loss records and the occasional scorn of family, friends and the media for "defending the bad guys."
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Ends up a portrait through a rose-colored lens, turning a social parasite into a Greek hero.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Gilliam's first fully equipped playpen and if he musses it up -- I mean, really musses it up --well, prodigies will be prodigies.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Mostly a lazy string of setups and sight gags, of tongue-in-cheek confrontations between the two stars that barely amount to sketches.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Whether it's any good depends on your expectations.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It's sort of like getting off the plane in a strange place without a guide. We can figure it out, but it takes some work, and the music is more of a distraction than an aid.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    One of those bright ideas for a TV sketch that convinces someone it's too good to waste on the small screen. It's not.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    By turns brilliant and tedious, imaginative and mundane.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    In any case, this is the image of the marquis we would know had he been handled by a top publicity team.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    No second or third act... a one-joke premise and a hundred punchlines.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    There's no avoiding the fact that it's a one-joke movie, 86 minutes in the telling, and without any serious social underpinnings, it grows old pretty fast.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Pretty much a road to nowhere.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Powerful theater.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Meadows is very good with the boys' relationship, and achieves his and Fraser's central goal of showing how childhood bonds can be simultaneously fragile and strong.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Enjoy Christmas in Paris, if you don't have enough problems of your own, with this slice of family life from French director Daniele Thompson.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    This is ensemble work at its best.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The saga might have worked better as a novel, where we could cast the characters with our imaginations, and keep them straight.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    If Mussolini had a Monica Bellucci to inspire his troops, we might still be trying to take Palermo.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    An unabashed celebration of her (Amalia) distinctive voice.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Rather than heightening our sense of empathy, we become numbed by the repetition.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Most of the film is so purposefully bound by its construct that it feels more like a creative-writing project (sure, give it an A) than a movie (B-).
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Ultimately, it's too much information coming too fast.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    That (cinéma-vérité) feel is absolutely convincing, as are the performances.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It could do without any kind of love story, let alone the one it got.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A fragmented, episodic feel and a conclusion that seems both remote and remote-controlled.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    There is really nothing wrong with Peter Chelsom's Town & Country that younger stars would not have solved.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    An ambitious film that sticks with you long after you have left the theater -- because of both what it achieves and what it does not.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Less a complete story than a work-in-progress.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Dumb fun is the best way to describe The Independent, and I mean that as a compliment.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    More amiably mindless summer distraction than just about anything Hollywood has to offer this season.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A riveting story.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It's just twice as much as we need to know about the Sex Pistols.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    If you care more about the quality of the movie than the food, language or location, there's no choice: Order Chinese.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    You won't find many insights into the personalities, or even a hint of the demons that plagued Garcia until his death, but seeing the two men together -- keeps a smile on your face and your feet tapping throughout.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Treats the poets not as creative equals but as a groundbreaking genius and a jealous, vindictive hack. Wordsworth is Salieri to Coleridge's Mozart.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    He (Hogan) and the other backers of the movie are betting that Dundee has been gone long enough to make him seem fresh, or -- like that old uncle -- at least welcome.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Turturro's Luzhin is a cinematic soulmate of Dustin Hoffman's Rain Man and Geoffrey Rush's David Helfgott.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The romantic subtext of their characters' relationship is the film's chief liability, and feels forced and undeveloped.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The Stockholm syndrome, that strange psychological malady by which hostages bond emotionally with their captors, is the central theme in this intimate melodrama.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Feels less like history than a bad episode of "Mission: Impossible."
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    If it's not one of the five best of 1999, it's a personal best for Weaver, and that's pretty good.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The film's asset, in a walk, is Bening, whose comic timing puts Shandling to shame.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Not quite as funny as it wants to be. Mostly, it's just silly. But as always, the Coens are entertaining themselves first.and their quirky individuality has served them and their fans well so far.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    An amazing physical specimen, beautifully photographed and edited. If you think of it as your own opium dream, you may dismiss the lousy story as a mere side effect.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    We never really learn what Lee thinks of this man, other than that he is worth every second of a 130-minute documentary.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A popcorn movie with a protein center, satisfying neither taste.
    • New York Daily News
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    I'd never seen anything like it, and can say that I hope to never see anything like it again.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Has the integrity of good dialogue and enough of a writer's preserved craftiness to make it a worthwhile date-night attraction.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Glover, wearing his close-cropped hair in a pompadour and striking beady-eyed, furrow-browed poses that scare the hair off a tarantula, makes it as much fun as a rat revenge movie can be.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Ultimately, it's the casting and the story that are too good to be true. If a newspaper's classified ad section could document a success like this one, there would never be a slump.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The story, which was inspired by an Albanian novel and the Greek tragedies of Aeschylus, ends with a literary patness. But it's still a potent tale of fraternal love and the loss of innocence.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    That's a lot just to justify a cute title, but cuteness is the engine driving the slight, obvious but occasionally very funny film.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It is driven by the finely expressed -- if nearly mute -- performance of Lemercier. We learn a lot about this woman and her emotional state from Lemercier's subtle body language. As for Lindon's Jean, well, it's enough that he's there and doesn't require batteries.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A light-footed comedy that suggests that for even the most desperate, love is just around the corner.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Frears story's grotesque subject offers an opportunity for a sick audience payoff that is more "Death Wish" than social commentary, and he takes it. It works -- you'll laugh! you'll gulp! -- but it's cheap.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A missed opportunity to shed light on one of America's most turbulent times.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It takes us about half the film to adjust to its quirkiness, and we leave the theater with both laughter cramps and the feeling that it should have been funnier a lot longer.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A speculative re-enactment of the 1999 Columbine slaughter, told from the point of view of two suburban high school nihilists as they videotape themselves preparing for the last and "best day" of their lives.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Ultimately, The Four Feathers is strong where its predecessors were weak (in the authenticity of combat) and weak where they were strong (in the larger-than-life quality of the characters). It's not a good exchange.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Whether you're charmed or bored by the movie depends entirely on your feelings for Amelie, a young woman whose hyper-quirky personality both takes some getting used to and grows old fast.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A feast of imagery.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Much of this is pretty funny, in its perverse, disorienting style, and there's an irrepressible sunniness to the relationship between Lola and Hlynur's mother.
    • New York Daily News
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Princess is far more contemplative than "Run Lola Run," far less energized, and the little tricks of fate that made his last film so unique seem like sophomoric affectations here.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Inexplicable human bondage is a literary staple of film as well as literature, but Kurys ("Entre Nous"), usually so sure-handed with her actors, has trouble making this bond compelling.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Chamber is chockablock with action (including a far more exciting game of Quidditch) and crafty special effects.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Among the unforgettable images is that of artificial limbs floating to earth on parachutes, while below, one-legged men on crutches race each other to the prizes.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The ethical issues driving Michael Hoffman's The Emperor's Club almost outweigh the improbable arc of its story, and Kevin Kline's endearing performance as a prep school classics teacher is almost worth the price of admission.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Written to skewer the upper class of its time, the script is now just a broad joke-fest, clever lines batted back and forth like badminton shuttlecocks.
    • New York Daily News
    • 37 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    With any sitcom, the freshness is ultimately in the writing, and I think the jokes are better here than in Analyze This, and the actors are more comfortable together. I don't know if De Niro is softening or has lost his edge, but he now seems content mocking himself.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    At one point, Junge complains that her memories are banal, and they are -- But when sounds of war penetrate the bunker and the end is near, the details become high drama.
    • New York Daily News
    • 38 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Plays like a long TV sketch, but with an array of characters, themes, subplots and situations just clever enough to keep it moving, and to give cover to its underlying cynicism.
    • New York Daily News
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Barry, with a raspy Southern accent, gives a chilling portrait of a man who is absolutely sure he killed JFK. Whether he's a psychopath or a schizophrenic is not satisfactorily answered, but it's a fascinating question nonetheless.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Once again, the director's eye is faultless as he captures both the essence and beauty of the art of Jang Seung-up, Korea's legendary 19th-century painter. But he doesn't capture the artist's soul.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It's frightening because it's so effective in fomenting fear and because it's so easy to recruit bombers among repressed and hopeless societies.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Gerstel's efforts are a testament to her own humanity and a ray of inspiration for some ultimate peace. But it also speaks to the near futility of individual forgiveness in a continuing tinderbox of hatred.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The film is at its most compelling when the witnesses are telling their stories, and at its least in covering Pinochet's circuitous legal route to Britain's House of Lords.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Treu and screenwriter Jessica Barondes may not have their ears to the ground that's trod by real kids, but as they did with their previous film, "Wish Upon a Star," they're allowed to dream.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    So much is so good about The Recruit that you'll wish the ending were better. It's like opening the last lid in a Chinese box and having a clown figure pop out on a spring.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Heartbreakers is too long by a half-hour, and there are entire sketches (including a horrid nightclub sequence with Weaver trying to sing in Russian) that could be mercifully sacrificed.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A safety-first, tried-and-true inspirational story that stays the course right down to its "It's a Wonderful Life" ending.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Julie Taymor's beautifully stylized but nauseatingly violent adaptation of Shakespeare's first play.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It's galling to see such a low-life canonized in a film, but it's also riveting drama.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A curious entry in the current wave of raunchy youth comedies. It's refreshingly free of scatological humor, but even while aiming higher, it can't raise its focus above the belt.
    • New York Daily News
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    You watch with amazement their physical movements, how closely their lips match their overly precise, prerecorded dialogue, yet they're not human enough to get us past the stunt factor and lost in the drama.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Hoffman is a fine actor in a rut, working on a string of socially alienated characters who are variations on the same theme. That's too bad, because the story being told around his static presence is amazing.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    In the end, Phantom needed more human and less digital scale. The magic of "Star Wars" lay in Lucas' ability to play the human comedy in a fantastic future. With Phantom, he has brought the series to the brink of total artificiality, the future as a video game.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Might be thought of as "Memento" for people who didn't get "Memento."
    • New York Daily News
    • 31 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Becomes a very conventional suspense film, replete with virtually every cliche of the genre, some used more than once.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The best performance comes from Venora.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Given the tragic events that actually happen, "Nickleby" ends not knowing what it was supposed to be. But those first two acts are nearly worth the price of admission.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    As delicious as this premise is, Cats & Dogs is about as funny as a hairball left on your pillow.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The result of Moskowitz's sleuthing is Stone Reader, a combination mystery, book celebration and -- sorry to say -- intrusively annoying self-portrait of the filmmaker.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    The standout in the cast is James Todd Smith, whose acting talent may soon persuade him to shed his adolescent stage name of LL Cool J and concentrate on mainstream film roles.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    Moves as slowly and deliberately as it sounds, but Seigner and Serrault are extremely effective in roles often requiring them to work alone, or together in loaded but wordless exchanges.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    It's certainly not scary; it's not even suspenseful. The tension in Hannibal is purely sexual.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A slicker, faster-paced, high-tech upgrade that lifts the sprightly spirit and the main action set piece from the original while developing its own twists and a new ending that, though a bit too pat and eager to please, is a vast improvement.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 63 Jack Mathews
    A thing of beauty and imagination.

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