James Berardinelli
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For 2,764 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 65% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 33% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 5.9 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

James Berardinelli's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 65
Highest review score: 100 Jaws
Lowest review score: 0 Bachelorette
Score distribution:
2,764 movie reviews
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This movie has a driving plotline that "Ray" lacked - a love story. To me, that's what elevates this film.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The interaction between the three teenagers is well executed and plausible, despite the almost complete lack of a back story for any of them.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Not only could one argue that this is the best "serious" work the director has ever attempted, but it's presented in a way that even the most seasoned Allen fan will have difficulty recognizing the iconic filmmaker's fingerprints.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The movie is funny, energetic, and enjoyable -- the perfect film for a night or an afternoon out, regardless of what mood you're in. While the plot and characters don't boast any special depth, there's enough freshness to hold just about anyone's interest.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    Provocative, entertaining, and impeccably crafted.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Perhaps best of all, this is a rare instance in which the 3-D, while not an asset, is at least not a detriment.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    An unremarkable bio-pic about a remarkable man.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    For those who have gotten their Harry Potter fix entirely through the cinematic incarnation, the script is lucid and fast-moving.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The film offers food for thought, and reminds us that, in any war, one who understands the mindset of his opponent gains an important tactical advantage.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    There is not a false note in Cry, the Beloved Country. Every scene is an example of near-perfect composition and execution.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Touching, funny, sweet, and most important of all, real -- a welcome breath of fresh air.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Wow. For those with strong constitutions, The Raid 2 offers one of the most intense motion picture experiences available; it may also be the most violent movie ever to be released into theaters.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It's not startling or frightening enough.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Despite its good intentions, A Family Thing could easily have been a mediocre drama, but the excellent performances elevate the film considerably.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    With fresh dialogue and a willingness to show his protagonists in a less-than-favorable light, Demme has found a way to make this entry memorable.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Consider it "Free Willy" with the Loch Ness Monster. It's that kind of family-friendly movie - one that focuses on the friendship between a lonely boy and an animal.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Oscar's life has the potential to become a Greek tragedy, but Winick keeps things light enough that it resolutely stays a comedy.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Slow moving and low key, and, when the final credits roll, you feel like you have spent nearly two hours in the company of a few real people, not constructs of a writer's imagination.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Despite its many strengths, Thank You for Smoking hovers around mediocrity, and its lasting impression is like a puff of smoke that is dissipated by a strong gust of wind.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    There are times when 22 Jump Street is borderline brilliant. Unfortunately, those instances are outnumbered by segments that don't work for one reason or another.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    After a while, Factotum surrenders to monotony and only the performances are likely to retain the viewer's interest.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Offers nothing more spectacular than a character study. And, although The Good Girl's protagonist may be trapped by routine, that's one claim that can never be made about the movie.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Takes the traditional romantic comedy and tweaks it by way of "The War of the Roses." Rarely has strife between the sexes been so ruthless, so civilized, and so funny.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Tropic Thunder understands movies, understands the system in which they are created and, most of all, knows what it takes to make an audience roar with laughter.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    Taken as a whole, Mad Dog and Glory is a disappointingly mixed bag. What's on the screen is passably diverting, but I often felt as if I was seeing only half the movie. With this intriguing premise and cast, the film should have offered more complete entertainment.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    A silly script and uneven pacing.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The vision of director Alex Proyas lifts this film above its sad history.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    As a melding of new techniques and technology with old-fashioned methods of storytelling, it's an opportunity for the Magic Kingdom to remind audiences that, when it comes to putting fairy tales on screen, they remain on a higher level.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Offers a more satisfying cinematic experience than "Oblivion."
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Enjoyable in a shallow way, but there's nothing so special here that it warrants more than a cursory glance.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Mulan effortlessly blends serious, comic, and cute elements into a whole that should entertain the majority of movie-goers, regardless of race, gender, or age.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Despite an occasional narrative hiccup, this is a rich and moving motion picture.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    For most of the movie, Cody and Reitman jape at her until, in the last 20 minutes or so, they attempt to turn her into an object of sympathy. It doesn't work and, on balance, neither does Young Adult.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    As a means to bring a classic novel to the attention of a modern audience, McGrath's Nicholas Nickleby is a success.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Ana is a vivid, vibrant individual and the movie's focus upon her makes it successful and accessible.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Isn't just heartwarming and inspiring, it's a remarkable look at a group of children whose most noteworthy trait is that they are ordinary.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It's lively and vivid but ends up leaving the viewer indifferent to the central character, his life, and his dubious place in British pop culture.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo can stand on its own as Fincher's valentine to goth girl power, detective stories, and the grotesqueness of the human heart.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    If you're a fan of James Brown's oeuvre, the film will keep you interested. If you're not, Get on Up will quickly become tedious and will wear out its welcome long before the end of its 133-minute run.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The Wrath of Khan is a top-notch, fast-paced adventure that can be enjoyed equally by fans of the series and those who have never seen an episode.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Jim Carrey re-invents Horton much as Robin Williams did with the Genie of the Lamp in Disney's animated "Aladdin."
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    First time director Jonathan Frakes (who also plays Riker, the Enterprise's second-in-command) injects some badly-needed energy and inventiveness into a series that, prior to this effort, was sinking under its own weight and boldly going nowhere.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Although Hanks' film starts out strong, it finishes on shaky ground... A serio-comedy/fantasy whose light dramatic arc can't support the awkward and unnecessarily melodramatic ending.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    There are times when, as diverting as it can be, Next Stop, Wonderland feels like a lengthy prologue to an as-yet unmade film.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    O'Connor gives the film a dark, moody look, which is the best choice for so many roiling emotions. This is not a traditional stand-up-and-cheer fight movie; the undercurrents are too strong and deep.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The result is an involving experience for all but the most fidgety children and an opportunity for parents to enjoy (rather than endure) a motion picture with their offspring.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Like nearly any thriller, no matter how intelligently and tightly plotted, it is possible to poke holes in its fabric. But, as it's unspooling in the theater, it makes for a wonderful movie house experience. Here's a sleeper worth a few extra miles' travel to see.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Not only is Pleasantville a satire, a fantasy, and a visual marvel, but it's the best kind of feel-good movie.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Thirty minutes into Waiting for Guffman, my stomach hurt from laughing.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Cruise is chillingly credible as the cold, cruel Vincent. And Foxx shows unexpected depth and humanity as Max, whose night encapsulates the cliché about being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is a hard, challenging motion picture. It demands much from the audience, and repays that investment with powerful, engrossing drama that does not offer insulting, facile answers. House of Sand and Fog is gripping and unforgettable, one of the best movies of 2003.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Ultimately, Clockers probably attempts too much, and ends up seeming overcrowded as a result.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    An unabashed excursion into feel good territory.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Mrs. Brown will delight and touch any viewer who seeks it out.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It's smart, strange, unpredictable, and defies the formulas that typically define this sort of motion picture.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Black Book possesses a taut, exciting script that throws surprises at the viewer on a regular basis.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Although Like Crazy contains some emotionally on-target scenes, the movie as a whole feels glum and artificial. The characters, especially the male lead, are so low key that they're frustrating to watch.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This one is a creepy white-knuckle excursion into horror, where even the "boo!" moments are so well developed that they cause a jolt.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The movie that "Mars Attacks!" wanted to be, but wasn't. This is a snappy, clever, often-funny motion picture that provides the perfect blend of science fiction-style action with comic dialogue.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    With its lack of car chases, fist fights, and over-the-top melodrama, the film has to rely on solid acting, an intelligent script, and capable directing.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    As biographical crime thrillers go, Killer Instinct is a worthy entry to the genre, although the incompleteness of the story makes it difficult to evaluate on its own. The movie needs to be seen in the context of a greater whole for it to be fully appreciated.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    It offers a feel-good experience, but without the heavy dose of schmaltz that often accompanies such a production.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The action scenes are, for the most part, kinetic and exciting - things that have rarely been true of fights and chases in the superhero's previous incarnations.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Each conversation has at least one memorable line, and it's always delivered in such a casual manner that it blends right in.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Moments of light comedy keeps the tone from becoming too heavy without sabotaging the movie's dramatic underpinning.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is a rare, "feel good" motion picture that doesn't insult our intelligence while making its play for our emotions.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    An ordinary story told well. Taken as a whole, there's little that's special about this tale -- it follows a traditional narrative path, leaves the audience with a warm, fuzzy feeling, and never really challenges or surprises us.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Despite the clever premise and several laugh-aloud moments, the film as a whole underwhelms.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Although the specter of death hovers over the entire film, it is neither a grim nor a depressing experience. Arcand has injected a great deal of wit into the movie, and it meshes perfectly with the anticipated pathos.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Berg's picture is certainly an above average effort that provides a solid emotional punch.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    As a source of light pleasure and solid laughs, it delivers. This particular cookie may not fill the belly, but it goes down easy.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    While not stunningly original, is fresh and compelling enough to hold the viewer's attention through its entire running length.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Without a hint of regret, the filmmaker freely borrows from such diverse sources as Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino, Oliver Stone, and the TV program "C.S.I."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It tells its own story and, unlike with "Thor 2" and "Iron Man 3," we don't feel the absence of the rest of the team.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    An atypical Allen film. Some of his usual themes are present - in particular, his neuroses about sex and love - but this movie does not bear enough Allen hallmarks to single it out as his work.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It's quite engaging. It is competently constructed and often compelling, but it will not be mentioned in the same breath as some of its classic predecessors.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    When a director can take a reprehensible monster and, over the course of a scant 90 minutes, turn audience reaction from distaste to sympathy, that's the mark of an adept filmmaker. This occurs in Tsotsi.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The best medium in which to view Countdown to Zero is on The History Channel, not in a theater.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    There's no denying the film's power of compulsion and the sense that, when it's all over, it means something. Most viewers will be entertained and moved, and some will find their intellect aroused.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    There's nothing especially original about Unstrung Heroes, but the story is told with intelligence and sensitivity.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Structured as a comedy, albeit a dark one.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Grease works as a musical, a comedy, a light romance, and a gentle satire of teenage life during the '50s. In part because of its persistent high spirits, it's a delight to watch, even 20 years after it first appeared on the screen.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The extreme nature of the gore isn't beside the point - it is the point. Raimi goes so far over the top in presenting these displays that they take on a campy, almost humorous appearance. It's impossible to take all this blood seriously. So, instead of being sickened, we're strangely amused - and this is all intentional.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The acting is uniformly excellent, with Kyra Sedgwick and Fairuza Balk in particular deserving to be singled out for praise.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    What sets this apart from its many competitors for teen dollars is that not only does the movie feature a surprisingly edgy and intelligent script, but it offers a group of characters capable of holding an audience's interest for more than 90 minutes.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Motion picture cotton candy - sweet while it lasts, easily disposed of, and insubstantial.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    A smart movie that does not simplify or candy-coat the rigors of the teenage years.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It makes for a fascinating exploration of the human experience.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Director Zhang Yimou's ambitious attempt to blend martial arts action with Shakespearean melodrama. It's not a perfect marriage but it offers two hours of solidly over-the-top entertainment featuring incredible visuals and powerful performances by international icons Gong Li and Chow Yun Fat.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    What "Eternal Sunshine" did with magic and whimsy, The Science of Sleep accomplishes with confusion and pretentiousness.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    An enjoyable experience.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Joe Klein's novel -- is a cynical satire of life on the campaign trail. It's harsh, blistering, and possesses an edge that the film, a warmhearted comedy/drama, lacks.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The most interesting personality in Ed Wood is not the title character, but Bela Lugosi. So covered up with makeup that he's barely recognizable, Martin Landau gives a deeply-felt performance -- a eerie and stunning recreation of a man haunted by lost fame.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    As a movie, The Hoax isn't a fraud but it's not the real deal, either.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Sweet and light. It's a celebration of cultural diversity and an affirmation that, despite differences in race, religion, and societal norms, people are essentially the same.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The kind of daring feature that doesn't open every Friday at the local multiplex; its frank, sometimes politically incorrect approach towards the act and politics of sex is refreshing.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    A stunning kaleidoscope of a motion picture - a mosaic of images that gradually resolves itself into a powerful tale of tragedy and redemption.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It's refreshing for a romantic comedy not to follow the formula by rote. I only wish I could be as enthusiastic about the amount of screen time accorded to certain characters who are more tedious than endearing.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It is fair to argue that, at least in the case of Rampart, Woody Harrelson is better than the material in which he appears.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The Spanish Prisoner is for anyone who likes to think and feel along with the characters.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    Not only is it a thrill-a-minute ride, but it has one of the best film villains in recent memory, a hero everyone can relate to, dialogue that crackles with wit, and a lot of very impressive pyrotechnics.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    From that point on, the movie becomes distressingly predictable, with nary a surprise to be found.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Contagion is the best movie made to date about an epidemic/pandemic.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    As was true for "In the Company of Men," LaBute doesn't care if viewers are offended. Supported by a fine group of actors, he tells the story without compromises, and that gives us a refreshing alternative to multiplex fare.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Despite its themes of terminal illness, dysfunctional families, and the need to heal old wounds, the film spends more time provoking laughter than tears.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It has two modes: dark and darker, and dares to do some things with the Christmas motif that haven't been done since Norman Rene's "Reckless."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    District B13 is action porn. It's a series of amazingly choreographed, kinetic action sequences tied together by a laughably bad script and worse acting.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Cronos is more concerned with ideas and atmosphere than people.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Nothing if not versatile. And, although perhaps not as funny as one might expect given the setup, it successfully grows the main characters beyond their stereotype roots.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    While "quirky" is a good descriptor for the production, Lars and the Real Girl isn't so bizarre that mainstream movie goers will reject it. This is an offbeat independent production that could become one of those big little fall surprises.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Nothing, no matter how outrageous, is beyond Smith, and his willingness to flaunt cinematic taboos is one of the reasons why Clerks is such a unqualified success.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Thumbsucker is true to its nature, and that makes Justin's eventual transformation all the more rewarding.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Because of the dominance of the central figure and the way in which The Cruise has been assembled, it functions more as a character study than a travelogue, and that makes for an engaging time in a darkened theater.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    With Inglourious Basterds, Quentin Tarantino has made his best movie since "Pulp Fiction." He has also made what could arguably be considered the most audacious World War II movie of all-time.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It is an accepted truth that adapting a sublime novel does not always result in a sublime movie. To an extent, this is the problem with Never Let Me Go.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Its complex (yet not mystifying) storytelling, forceful character development, and superb cinematography make this a candidate for one of 2006's best offerings.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Comparisons to the original Bad Lieutenant are unnecessary; Port of Call New Orleans can stand - and fall - on its own merits, inconsistent though they may be.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    a 95-minute thrill ride from director Tony Scott, delivers the right level of adrenaline.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The end result is something that feels like it was put together from a jumble of Disney clichés tacked onto the skeleton of "Beauty and the Beast."
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Unfortunately, the running time is too short for us to get to know, or care about, the characters in a way that would make the film's themes strike a responsive chord.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Let's get this straight from the start: Slither isn't great art, but that doesn't mean it isn't good entertainment.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Seems breezier and less self-conscious than the Mike Myers franchise.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Revolutionary Road is a fine motion picture, but it's not a good choice to lighten a burden or brighten a night. It rewards in the ways that only tragedies can.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Take away Bruce Willis and this is straight-to-video material.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Palo Alto may not be the most exciting film about high school life to come along in the past few years, but it is among the most honest and words like "pandering" and "insulting" don't apply.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Overlong and unevenly paced, Cinderella Man hits stretches (especially between bouts) when it threatens to lose its audience.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The best part of the film, unsurprisingly, is William H. Macy's low-key portrayal of Bernie.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    A lot takes place during The Painted Veil's two-hour running length, but most of what happens occurs within the hearts and minds of the leads.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The chief pleasure to be derived from watching Cold Souls is that it's a journey into the unexpected.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    Relies on uncomfortable black humor and moments of sincere drama to involve viewers. But everything is encased in artifice and the movie becomes a chore to take in.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    [The film] occasionally had me convulsed with laughter.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is as anti-Hollywood a film as I have seen in recent months, one which takes conventional plot ideas and uses them not to season a melodrama, but to enrich fully three-dimensional characters and create a forceful motion picture.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The Avengers kicks ass.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The New World is beautiful and lyrical and, except for the ill-advised voiceovers, a treat for more than one of the senses.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Many times, films that combine comedy and drama do so in an uncomfortable and unwieldy manner. In Slums of Beverly Hills, the approach is natural and satisfying.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This is a comic amusement park ride – a wildly uneven movie that offers tremendous pleasure for the moment, even if it doesn't stand up well to post-screening analysis and scrutiny.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Isn't the best coming-of-age story to hit the big screen, but it skirts new territory, and does so with a flare that earns it a recommendation.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The cast is comprised of unfamiliar faces, which enhances the pseudo-reality of the milieu. The principals - Dane DeHaan, Alex Russell, and Michael B. Jordan - are professional actors with credits (many on television) to their names. But they are not "known" stars and that allows them to be accepted with ease into these roles.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    When it comes to Christmas movies, although most are quickly forgotten, a select few go on to become touchstones, beloved and re-watched by families year after year after year. Arthur Christmas may have what it takes to join the latter category.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    With its rapid pace, smart screenplay, and top-notch acting, this is one of the 2007 Oscar season's most appealing and compelling adult motion pictures.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The strengths of The Underneath -- its atmosphere and character-centered basis -- are also its weaknesses.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Solitary Man gives Douglas a chance to act, not merely posture or show off for the camera. It's some of the finest, least forced work he has done in years.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    A heist movie in the classic tradition - it details every aspect of the caper, from its genesis to its aftermath. The fact that there's political intrigue and espionage swirling around the edges only makes it more fascinating.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    So what keeps the movie from being boring? Nathalie... is like lewd Eric Rohmer - that is to say that what the characters have to say is INTERESTING.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Everything (not just the flesh) is vibrant with life.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The acting is top-notch, the characters are three-dimensional, and the dialogue is sharp and witty.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Some of the funniest scenes belong to Ice Cube's "angry black captain" who goes on profane rants that would make Samuel L. Jackson proud.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The plot is borderline ridiculous and certainly doesn't stand up to close (or even not-so-close) scrutiny, but there's a level of entertainment to be had watching it unfold in all its strangeness.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Goldthwaite's script has the honesty of someone speaking with the voice of experience.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    An incomplete movie, artlessly cleft in the middle. Cinema interruptus.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is not the first time Wright has shown his understanding for such things, nor is this the first occasion in which he has displayed a strong sense of comedic timing, but Scott Pilgrim vs. the World feels fresher and more inspired than his previous outings, and that makes it an excellent source of late-summer entertainment.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    A mildly enjoyable romantic comedy.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Agreeable enough motion picture, but not one that leaves any sort of lasting impression.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    While Changing Lanes isn't a perfect movie, it's watchable and compelling, and works on more than one level.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The Drop's unpredictability is organic rather than sensationalistic. The movie doesn't pull surprises out of thin air for the sole purpose of shocking an audience - it lets them develop naturally.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    "Capote" is the more intellectual of the two films; Infamous is the more emotional. They exist to complement, not eclipse, one another.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Stirring and emotionally forceful.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Gallo's script is quirky and filled with a number of hilariously strange comic moments.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    Because of the potential of the idea and Cronenberg's reputation as a film maker, it's a real disappointment to watch eXistenZ fall apart the way it does.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Carrey is forced to confine his antics to the needs of Liar Liar's unimaginative screenplay, and the results are mixed.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    There are no big-name stars. Barbara Serafian, who is excellent, has a thin, eclectic resume. She looks a little like Frances McDormand.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    An intellectually and emotionally exhausting and engrossing experience. It is drama of the highest caliber.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    Offeris an exhilarating, and occasionally touching, experience that has viewers leaving the theater caught up in an afterglow of wonder. These days, heros like William Wallace are as rare as motion picture displays of this high, uncompromising quality.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Kevin Bacon and Marisa Tomei make the most of their limited screen time, injecting straight comedy into a movie that occasionally comes close to losing its sense of humor.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The problem with End of Watch, a gripping police drama, is director David Ayer's stylistic decision to shoot nearly the entire movie tripod-less. Or, to put it another way, there's a whole lotta shakin' going on.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The best thing I can say about Apocalypto is that, despite belonging to an overpopulated genre, it's unlike any other movie to reach theaters this year and, because it is as visual an experience as it is visceral, it is best seen on a large screen.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It's better than most dramas showing in multiplexes.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Doesn't have any pretensions. It is what it sets out to be: an effective piece of big money, early summer entertainment designed to blow viewers away.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    That's what we get with The Adventures of Tintin - an unplayable video game that's fast-paced and amusing but never coming close to the best director Steven Spielberg has offered when in his "pure entertainment" mode.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The pervasive aura of creepiness more than compensates for the low body count and inventive use of sharp instrumentation.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Does what it sets out to do: educates about a mostly unknown historical figure (without doctoring the facts too much), entertains, and uplifts.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This film is the complete package, and offers a thoroughly satisfying two-plus hours in a darkened theater.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    A meditation on the pain suffered by a mother when her child turns out to be a monster, We Need to Talk about Kevin is the perfect tonic for holiday cheer.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    While Monster House is in no way groundbreaking, it's an enjoyable way to spend 90 minutes, and is suitable for all but the youngest children.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The film will almost certainly speak most strongly to those viewers whose age approximates those of the characters, but the narrative and performances are strong enough to involve anyone who gives this motion picture a chance.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Infectiously entertaining comedy.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It is not a step-by-step chronicle of German reunification, but it gives a perspective of the time. It's a bonus that this comes as part of an engrossing and well told story.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    An infectious mix of romance, mystery, and magic.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Charlotte's Web has all the requisite elements that a family film needs to succeed and endure: humor, drama, pathos, and an emotionally satisfying ending.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    For Your Consideration will not go down as one of Guest's crown jewels, but it's nevertheless engaging.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It celebrates art, hope, and dreams, and you don't have to like hip-hop to appreciate the message or the way in which it is delivered.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert is about the most fun you can have with three guys who like to dress up as women.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    The truth can indeed be stranger than fiction and, in this case, were the story to have originated in the imagination of the screenwriter, it could rightfully be criticized as artificial and contrived. But, disturbing and unlikely as it may be, this stuff actually happened, and pretty much as Craig Zobel relates it.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This is a film to be enjoyed on a psychological level for its keen understanding of the contradictory impulses that drive sexual and social intercourse.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    By offering opportunities to laugh, cry, and cheer, Little Voice satisfies in a big way.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Heaven's tone is all wrong. The movie tries to be ethereal, but ends up seeming goofy.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Miracle is inspirational and uplifting -- qualities we are as much in need of today as we were during the winter of 1980.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Unfortunately, a little too much pointless running around coupled with the underdevelopment of several key characters results in a movie that's never more than mildly diverting.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Nicely paced and fits the bill for those in search of two hours of spy-based action and martial arts. The movie has credibility issues, but none are insurmountable in the name of entertainment.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The film's emotional truth and honesty allows us to forgive a great many flaws.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The "nature" aspects of Bears are undercut by the need to turn this into a live-action Disney cartoon, complete with cuddly heroes and nasty villains.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The cinematic equivalent of cotton candy: certainly not unpleasant, but not especially satisfying despite the sweet taste.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Soul Food stays a cut above the average melodrama by keeping the characters grounded and the situations from becoming too ripe.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    It's funny, affecting, and appealing, and more worthy than much of what's out there. Often, coming-of-age stories rely forcefully on formulaic narrative developments but The Way Way Back remains fresh from start to finish.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    At times Client 9 feels frustratingly incomplete. Gibney hints at a conspiracy among Spitzer's enemies but is unable to fully substantiate this thesis.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The central problem with Rise of the Planet of the Apes is that it feels more like a piece of something larger than a complete motion picture.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This is a film for anyone who prefers to leave the theater smiling.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Visually, X2 is a sight to behold, with impressive special effects and a dynamic sense of place.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    While these may not be the most unusual themes to fashion into a motion picture, Rudolph's atypical approach to the characters and their situations makes for an intriguing, if not always pleasant, movie.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    With Honeydripper, Sayles has done what he always does: bring together a group of characters and allow us to relish their interaction. His affection for the characters is both obvious and infectious. We like them, warts and all.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    In terms of power and effect, Eyes Wide Shut approaches (but does not surpass) Kubrick's vintage work - it is thought-provoking and unsettling.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The characters are interesting and capture our sympathy and, although there are things to criticize about the final forty-five minutes, it brings the saga to a conclusion. There's a lot to like about The Place Beyond the Pines even if it isn't the feel-good movie of the spring.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Only now can we truly step back and admire the full tapestry that it has taken George Lucas and his ILM wizards nearly three decades to weave.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Not much happens during the course of the movie but, as with all good dramas, the protagonists are richly drawn and the events of their lives become of interest.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It’s far less engaging than the recent "3:10 to Yuma" remake and concentrates more on the details than the broad picture.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Gruesomely engaging.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The Italian Job isn't a masterpiece, but it gets the job done.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    A courtroom drama which is sufficiently different and thought-provoking that I can recommend it with a clear conscience.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Too many comedies have become routine and predictable - qualities that don't enhance the potential for good laughs. Neighbors retains sufficient spontaneity to give it a fresh, lively feel.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is a film of tremendous scope and emotional depth that uncovers the soul of a novel and brings it to life on the screen.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The movie as a whole is a mixed bag. It's overlong and a times sluggish. The fights and battles, designed to give an epic fantasy feel to the movie, are grave miscalculations.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is a beautifully-shot film, and director Robert Redford (who also provides the voice-over narration) has paid painstaking attention to detail.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    At its best, this could have been a passable distraction and at its worst, it could have been unwatchable. Barrymore manages to bring it in somewhere in between those extremes.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Yet, even on those occasions when the screenplay falters, the actors are there to take up the slack.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    A compelling piece of cinema.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It fails to sustain its comic momentum or high energy level. The first half is fresh and funny, but it doesn't last.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Lovers of drama featuring quirky characters will find things to appreciate.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The biggest weakness of the novel is characterization, and the same flaw is fully evident in the screen adaptation.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    After the chaos of "Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen," it's refreshing to encounter a science fiction film that respects the intelligence and attention span of an adult.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    There's a wit in Segel's writing that marks him as every bit Apatow's equal in this arena.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Frankly, Snow Angels is a downer. This isn't inherently a negative - after all, some of the cinema's most powerful motion pictures are downbeat. However, in this case, there's no emotional force behind all the gloom - just a sense that something's missing.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The acting is top-notch. Colin Farrell, who seems to be gravitating increasingly toward smaller films, effectively channels his manic energy. He and Brendan Gleeson display chemistry in the Odd Couple vein, occasionally giving rise to instances of humor. Ralph Fiennes plays one of the most twisted roles of his career.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    Just because a movie is ambitious and challenging doesn't mean it can't also be tedious and at times unbearable.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    By the time September arrives, This is the End will probably be in the running for "funniest comedy of the 2013 summer."
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Well-made, and it held my attention throughout, but this is one of those motion pictures where it's easier to admire than like the final result.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It is a dark, violent, sexually explicit motion picture that will surely offend timid viewers.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Moves slowly -- it's an unhurried, talky affair that consists primarily of members of the small group of characters interacting.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The real problem with Fahrenheit 9/11 isn't that it attacks the current Republican administration, but that it does so clumsily and with poor focus.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    It's not as crisply directed, and the plot holes are easier to find, but Die Hard 2 is filled with the same sense of good-natured, wisecracking fun that infused the original.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    John Wick is a rousing action thriller of the sort rarely encountered in theaters these days. The once popular genre, which was headlined by the likes of Stallone and Schwarzenegger during its heyday, has been a dying breed during the past two decades.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    The movie doesn't offer enough to make it interesting or even diverting.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Holofcener has an ear for dialogue, and, as is often the case with the best character- centered films, a chief pleasure is simply enjoying what the participants have to say to one another.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Typically, movies aimed at teenage audiences have little concern for things like intelligent scripts, credible characters, and meaningful dialogue. Better Luck Tomorrow contains all three, making it a hugely rewarding experience.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Darkly effective, and its grip lasts longer than we might be entirely comfortable with.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Compelling and life-affirming.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This is one of the director's mainstream efforts, although his penchant for the offbeat and oddly artistic has not been completely reined in. But there's plenty of unsparing, bone-crunching violence to dismiss the idea that Soderbergh is making an art film in disguise.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    Yes, A Late Quartet is disappointing. But it's also pretty bad.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Taken as a whole, Shallow Grave is a reasonably enjoyable (for those captivated by this sort of thing) black comedy/noir thriller that justifies at least a portion of the praise being heaped upon it from overseas.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Ronin manages to remain focused on the plot and the characters, even while staging increasingly complicated pyrotechnic set pieces and offering its share of white-knuckle moments.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It offers a solid two hours of pure, escapist entertainment.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The question hanging over Private Parts' financial success is whether enough non-Stern fans will venture to see what they may view as a "cult" or "niche" film. Most who take a chance, regardless of what prejudices they harbor against WXRK's top personality, will find themselves rewarded by a surprisingly pleasant two hours.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    As good as the lead actor is, he's not enough to save this picture from landing on the scrap-heap of uninspired, derivative, and grotesquely distasteful character studies. Ferrara is definitely no Martin Scorsese.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This is a great two-hour motion picture. Unfortunately, it runs 20 minutes longer than that.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This is the most mature animated feature since "Rango."
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is a deeply cynical movie and, in that cynicism, it finds truth.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The Hunger Games represents the best first book adaptation of any of the three series. It surpasses Christopher Columbus' "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's/Philosopher's Stone" by a whisker and Catherine Hardwicke's "Twilight" by considerably more than that.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Most viewers will discover this picture - and it is worth discovering - when it is released on DVD.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The Perks of Being a Wallflower tweaks the formula just enough to remain fresh and offer something a little new. It's sad, funny, warm, and nostalgic - kind of like high school, really.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    As long as you go into Garden State with reasonable expectations, its capacity to disappoint will be limited.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The plot runs out of steam just past the one-hour mark and the charade, although necessary to the story, goes on for too long. The ending is, of course, the requisite happy one, but it seems a little anticlimactic.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The film's climax is nothing short of hilarious. And Death at a Funeral doesn't discriminate when it comes to the type of humor it embraces it. Everything is in there, from physical hijinks to verbal repartee to naked man jokes to drugs and gross-out stuff.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It comes across as painfully politically correct, offering trite sermons on various "hot-button" issues (gun control and the greenhouse effect). The narrative follows an unwavering by-the-numbers strategy with an ending that echoes the "cornball" of Al Pacino's climactic Scent of a Woman speech.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Stranger than Fiction is a wonderful cinematic experience - a welcome way to spend a chilly autumn evening.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Cairo Time is a valentine to Egypt.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Will work better for younger viewers than older ones. There's not much plot to absorb and there's plenty of action, so this is the kind of spectacle that will appeal to those without long attention spans.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Technically and thematically, there's a lot in The Darjeeling Limited to arrest the attention. Emotionally, there's a void.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Solid family entertainment, and it's better than 2006's previous tepid animated releases.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Offers a clear-eyed chronicle of a female friendship that is more complex and honest than anything represented in a Hollywood film.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    It's nice to see Clooney choosing something offbeat (as opposed to "safe") for his first outing behind the camera. If he continues to develop, he has the potential to become a good director -- he's just not there yet.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Not a positive triumph, but it does bring a smile to the face and, perhaps in some cases, a tear to the eye.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Star Trek IV, while not a superior effort, is an effective and enjoyable sample of entertainment -- not good science fiction, but a lightweight piece of comic fantasy utilizing characters so familiar that they feel like old friends.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 38 James Berardinelli
    This movie works best as a sleep tonic. Somewhere isn't just frustratingly slow-moving; it's inert.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    The Book of Life represents Guillermo del Toro's most hands-on foray (to date) into the realm of family friendly entertainment; this is closer in tone and sensibility to one of Tim Burton's offbeat animated films than one of Pixar's more "vanilla" productions.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Parts of Ruby Sparks are glowing and gentle. Others are harsh. Still others are wrenching. The transitions are expertly handled, never seeming jarring or inappropriate. If the movie feels like two shorter pieces grafted at the middle, that's an intentional decision. The filmmakers give us something approaching a traditional romantic comedy before deconstructing it.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Satisfies on a visual and visceral level while leaving the intellectual one cold and shriveled and starving.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Although The Eclipse is technically a horror film, dealing as it does with issues of the supernatural, it has the heart of a romance and the tone of a drama. It's slow, thoughtful, and melancholy - at times seeming to forget that a ghost story is supposed to be at least marginally scary.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Batman is largely content to skim the surface and bask in the light of its visual style.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    World Trade Center is Stone's most potent motion picture since "Platoon," and may be the most accessible across-the-board since "Wall Street."
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    A firecracker of a story - sharply written, superbly acted, and fast-paced.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Rosewater does not have blockbuster potential but it is more entertaining than one might expect from this material and it leaves an indelible impression about the Iranian justice system - something akin to the inmates running the asylum.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The resulting tale of friendship and family touches plenty of crowd-pleasing buttons but comes across as more than a little derivative.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Has two strengths to recommend it: strong character interaction and a viciously accurate depiction of the modern corporate philosophy.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Gets the most bang for its buck by letting the camera linger on the spectacle, and allowing tension, not flashiness, to be its hallmark.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    The marriage of these two tales, however, should have ended in divorce court.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Not everything in City Island works - some of the secrets are obvious plot devices - but, in terms of feel-good, undemanding entertainment, this is as good as anything I have seen thus far in 2010.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Despite the weak dialogue, there are still some laughs to be had. At the end of this long journey, we're rooting for Harry and Erica to be together. For the movie to get us to that point, regardless of its motives and methods, it can't be all bad.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Voyeurism is a favorite pursuit of Americans, and The Girlfriend Experience works in large part because it indulges that pastime. The fascination with the film is that it offers an arm's-length opportunity to peer through a peephole into a lifestyle that will be exotic and alluring to most in the audience.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    All-in-all, the intelligence of the approach combined with good old-fashioned zombie blood-and-gore (as opposed to the slicker, sicker torture porn variety) makes this not only the most satisfying motion picture Romero has made in a long while, but one of the best of his career.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Mandoki has given us a powerful motion picture. Even those who disagree with the film's politics will be haunted by its message.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    May be the best family movie of the 2002 summer film-going season. There's a simple reason for this - the picture seems to have been put together with the recognition that some members of the audience may be above the age of ten.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    A compelling motion picture that illustrates an American tragedy and shows the transformation of a decent family man into someone whose struggles with addiction and association with the wrong man bring him to an untimely end, with no hope of retribution.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    Notting Hill does an adequate job, but this isn't one of those landmark romantic comedies that dozens of subsequent movies will seek to emulate.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Emma lacks the depth of passion present in the other Austen films, but, in large part because it's trying for something lighter and breezier, it's still fun.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 100 James Berardinelli
    Dead Again does not come across as a Hitchcock knock-off, but as a motion picture that incorporates familiar themes and approaches while maintaining its own integrity and identity. Not once during the entire production is there an obviously stolen scene or camera angle replication.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    It's a thrill-a-minute ride that concludes with a whimper, like a roller-coaster that has all the drops and twists early. Make no mistake, this is a good source of early summer fun, but with a little extra imagination, it could have been a whole lot more.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Tennant takes this familiar material and crafts a charming, captivating motion picture.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    A beautiful film, not only in the way it was photographed, but for the manner through which the characters are revealed to us.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    This is not a "nice" movie -- it deals with some pretty intense issues (like incest and suicide) -- but it is both bold and inventive, and works because of an unforced approach.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    On balance, one could argue that Seven Psychopaths warrants a better rating than a mediocre **1/2, but the aftertaste is so bitter that it diminishes the sweetness that started off the meal.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 James Berardinelli
    The content is actually pretty bland -- it's not incisive, it's not daring, it's not uproarious, and it's not very good.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Not a typical Disney family film -- thank god. Charming and thought-provoking, this is the kind of movie with the sweetness necessary to appeal to younger (although not too young) viewers and the philosophical richness to draw in veteran movie-goers.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Gut-wrenching, brutal, and powerful, American Me is not enjoyable in the conventional sense, but nevertheless stands out as one of the year's most impressive purely dramatic offerings.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    With Steven Soderbergh at the helm, this has become a whimsical, semi-comedic romp, complete with a score by Marvin Hamlisch that recalls kitschy '70s TV shows, cutesy captions, and a tongue-and-cheek approach to the entire story.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Gordon-Levitt wears three hats (director, writer, actor) and all of them fit.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    It's a superior thriller made with the guts and gusto that too many recycled entries into the genre fail to exhibit.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Enjoyable enough that the sprinkles of artificial sweetness in the mix don't do lasting or irreparable damage.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 James Berardinelli
    There's plenty going on but never any real magic.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 James Berardinelli
    Its unique take on a common subject lends freshness to the familiar and provides a worthy motivation for seeing this.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    This is an offering for mature viewers thrown out amidst a sea of summer flotsam. The title, Elegy, is perfect for the material. There is much tragedy and truth in what the makers of this movie have brought to the screen.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 James Berardinelli
    Dark City has as stunning a visual texture as that of any movie that I've seen...Visually, this film isn't just impressive, it's a tour de force.

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