For 852 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 65% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 32% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 3.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Jay Carr's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Terms of Endearment
Lowest review score: 0 The Skulls
Score distribution:
852 movie reviews
    • 58 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Under Siege is dumb formula stuff, sensory jolts by the numbers. [09 Oct 1992, p.89]
    • Boston Globe
    • 57 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The sequel goes down the tubes by spreading itself across four time zones and inviting comparison to the original by spending most of its time back in 1955, where another mess must be set right. [22 Nov 1989, p.35]
    • Boston Globe
    • 58 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    You couldn't ask for a better setting for a horror movie. What you could ask for is a better script.
    • Boston Globe
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Alien Nation quickly abandons any possibility of an equivalently fascinating world for the formulas of a routine cop movie. [7 Oct 1988, p.40]
    • Boston Globe
    • 68 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    It's two hours of slumming in a vision of hell hatched from bourgeois comfort. That, and not its unsavory subject matter, is what makes it bummer theater.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Except for a few coups de style, Amateur is a screenful of cool nothingness. [05 May 1995]
    • Boston Globe
    • 22 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Isn't even worth a glance.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Village of the Damned has everything you want in a horror movie but the horror. [28 Apr 1995, p.90]
    • Boston Globe
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Takes a vacation from quality.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Consumerism is running more amok than ever, but this satire of it isn't.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Part of the reason Pet Sematary is so pedestrian is that its leads - Dale Midkiff and Denise Crosby - are uncharismatic. And director Mary Lambert, of Siesta and music video fame, doesn't know how to build and pace her material. [21 Apr 1989, p.46]
    • Boston Globe
    • 16 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Awful in ways that are just clever enough often enough to make it intermittently watchable.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    A lot of striking pictures in this would-be feminist "Braveheart," but a film that's pretty flat and earthbound because of the limitations of the figure at its center.
    • 14 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Meretricious without being entertaining, it's an easy game -- and an easier film -- to sit out.
    • Boston Globe
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    A fatally insubstantial film.
    • Boston Globe
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation is yet another factory product that plays more like a marketing strategy than a comedy. Like the other farces bearing the National Lampoon brand label, it's a comedy of obliviousness - family man Chevy Chase refuses to alter his sentimental notions of family rituals despite repeatedly being slammed in the face with evidence of how far short of his expectations they fall. Here, the word "vacation" is a misnomer. The Griswold family, headed by Chase, doesn't go anywhere. Neither does the film.
    • Boston Globe
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Flirt has its moments, and Ewell and Nikaidoh are auspicious additions to the Hartley rep company. But Flirt will appeal mostly to Hartley completists. [23 Aug 1996]
    • Boston Globe
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Road House is the kind of action movie whose rigging is so blatant that there can be no air of heroism about it. Although Swayze and Sam Elliott, in the role of his mentor, have the decency to look sheepish most of the time, there's no end to the cynicism and merchandising on screen, especially in the sex scenes. [19 May 1989, p.45]
    • Boston Globe
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    It seems endless. It's also unusually crude and stupid, even for an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    In the Mouth of Madness is firmly lodged in the armpit of boredom. [03 Feb 1995, p.55]
    • Boston Globe
    • 55 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Occasionally wills itself to rude, crude life. But most of the time it's pretty limp.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The tame, confused script eventually sinks the film, although Field shows skill directing actors.
    • Boston Globe
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    It's not boring to watch, but in the end it's too lame and too tame. [21 Apr 1995]
    • Boston Globe
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Isn't going to be a contender
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Avalanches are nothing compared to the deadening touch of the stereotyping and audience-insulting simplicities in the scenic but brain-dead Vertical Limit.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    It's a lame and painfully overextended satire of homophobia.
    • Boston Globe
    • 54 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    What the Hughes brothers have come up with is, to borrow another phrase from that bygone age, a penny dreadful.
    • Boston Globe
    • 15 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Berlinger has approached Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 with intelligence and even a bit of thematic heft. But, frankly, the cheap thrill is gone.
    • Boston Globe
    • 57 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Ultimately, the film's self-censoring will to sweetness and innocence is even more fatal than the flimsiness of the plot. [22 Nov 1991, p.33]
    • Boston Globe
    • 21 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The screenplay, with its relentlessly schematic characters saying relentlessly schematic things, is so moronic that it makes you long for a documentary on the real Cape League.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    A sodden-looking film.
    • Boston Globe
    • 55 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    By now, Rocky of the drooping eyes and damaged brain has turned guru, emphasizing heart, soul and family ties when the evil promoter starts goading him and playing mind games with his protege. Stallone, said to be following Arnold Schwarzenegger into comedy, is starting earlier than anyone realized. [16 Nov 1990, p.78]
    • Boston Globe
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Sadly unworthy of Douglas.
    • 9 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    So heavy and lifeless that you keep waiting for those three little front-row kibitzers from "Mystery Science Theatre 3000" to appear at the bottom of the screen to start goofing on it.
    • Boston Globe
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Never having decided whether it wants to be comedy or a sentimental hand-wringer, it tries to be both and winds up being neither.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The problem in The One isn't the black holes in the universe, to which the characters refer at periodic intervals, but the black hole on the screen. The One is a zero.
    • Boston Globe
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Mostly plays like an artificial stupidity experiment. Zappy visuals aside, it's essentially a reactionary take on science, stemming from the movies' traditional belief that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, and a lot of knowledge is worse. Think of it as Faust Goes to the Lab, with an ambitious doc serving as Mephistopheles. [6 Mar 1992, p.30]
    • Boston Globe
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Maudlin script mars teen love.
    • Boston Globe
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Strenuously as it tries, and pulse-poundingly successful as the embassy rescue scene is, Rules of Engagement never engages us.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    A few of the sequences are bad enough to be funny, especially the ones involving Sheen skulking around alien central in a red jump suit, falling down a lot, as if directed by Ed Wood. [31 May 1996, p.52]
    • Boston Globe
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The Disney people have taken such obvious care in making Return to Oz that it's a shame it didn't turn out better. It has its moments - mostly visual - but when it isn't a grim downer, it's largely inert. [21 Jun 1985, p.21]
    • Boston Globe
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Such an utter piece of fluff so conceptually barren it might as well be a music video.
    • Boston Globe
    • 55 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    One could argue that ''Lock, Stock'' and Snatch are essentially the same movie - crime comedies marked by an outlandish visual style. Which raises the question of whether Ritchie has the range to do anything else.
    • Boston Globe
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Blurs the line between black comedy and black hole.
    • Boston Globe
    • 16 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Full of atmosphere and visuals, it's empty of anything that really matters.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Despite its good looks and expertly turned performances, it trivializes Kafka and his work. The simplistic optimism behind it is more terrifying than anything we actually see on screen. Sitting through Kafka is like watching somebody staff a suicide hotline by telling callers to just lighten up. [21 Feb. 1992, p.28]
    • Boston Globe
    • 69 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    An abundance of style and an almost total lack of substance make Wong Kar-wai's Happy Together a visually arresting but ultimately unrewarding excursion. [31 Oct 1997]
    • Boston Globe
    • 51 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    It plays like a pilot for what I imagine will be network TV's first all-gay sitcom.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The images are pretty, and Gene Quintano's screenplay gets everybody from point A to point B, though with no discernible knack for wit or subtlety.
    • Boston Globe
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Although 1492: Conquest of Paradise is a classier failure than Christopher Columbus: The Discovery, the glum truth is that both are lost at sea. [09 Oct 1992, p.85]
    • Boston Globe
    • 44 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Even allowing for differences in national styles, Kikujiro sprawls and stumbles. It's a road movie that turns into its own detour.
    • 17 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Causes one to wish... that movies about the supernatural could make contact with supernatural script doctors.
    • Boston Globe
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Sitting through it is like waking up on Christmas morning to find a stockingful of styrofoam.
    • Boston Globe
    • 14 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Mixed Nuts is that cinematic oddity: a film that's pretty awful, yet almost perversely endearing -- despite the tiredness with which it plays out its labored jokes before bringing them together in a gooey Christmas ending. [21 Dec 1994, p.94]
    • Boston Globe
    • 65 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Soapdish should have been a laugher. But this new spoof of TV soaps isn't nearly as funny as the real thing. Soapdish holds only the merest sliver of entertainment. [31 May 1991, p.28]
    • Boston Globe
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Starts by cheating death and ends by cheating us.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    May not emerge as the biggest disaster of the holiday movie season, if only because we haven't yet seen all the other year-end films. But it is a huge high-energy misfire, bringing Tom Cruise, Penelope Cruz, and Cameron Crowe to earth with a thud.
    • Boston Globe
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Trips early and never gets up off the floor.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Writer and director Tim Disney raises a provocative point about how radical and inconvenient true faith can be.
    • Boston Globe
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Offers little in the way of pleasure, even to its target audience -- the easily pleased and undemanding.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    See Spot Run isn't solely responsible for the dumbing down of movies, but it's part of the dismal phenomenon.
    • Boston Globe
    • 52 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Hook touches neither fantasy nor soulfulness nor yearning. Mostly, it's benign spectacle in which the actors keep yielding the camera to some expensive playground or other. Hook is neither wistful nor primal. It's film's most expensive wind-up toy. [11 Dec. 1991. p.53]
    • Boston Globe
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    It's "Beach Blanket Bingo" revisited, but with a Eurocast and more exotic locations.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Mostly a screenful of nothingness.
    • 15 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Isn't as funny as it is crude, and isn't as crude as it is labored.
    • Boston Globe
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    There's no getting around the fact that it's an uneven exercise that shows signs of having gestated too long. [04 Jun 1999]
    • Boston Globe
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The action is mostly witless and predictable. One measure of its desperation and lack of respect for its audience is the frequency with which it labors to wring humor from flatulence and excrement gags.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Hits mostly flat notes, then a few really sour ones.
    • Boston Globe
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Larceny at its most labored.
    • Boston Globe
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The Dead Pool is not a subtle movie or a bloodless one, although it does manage to put its own twist on the usual car chase sequence. [13 Jul 1988, p.59]
    • Boston Globe
    • 63 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    The more intense it gets, the sillier it looks. The only thing worth watching in this wannabe noir is Christian Clemenson's performance as Spader's permanently bummed-out pot-smoking brother. Clemenson alone fills the screen with the kind of individuality that makes you steadily deepen your belief in his character. But he's not enough to keep Bad Influence from degenerating into a ludicrous turn-off. [09 Mar 1990, p.27]
    • Boston Globe
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    A lame little flat liner.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    Stumbles over its own clumsiness until it goes down for the count.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Jay Carr
    John Patrick Shanley's Joe Versus the Volcano starts out so brilliantly, so hilariously, so imaginatively, that even as it's cracking you up, you begin worrying that the rest of the film can't possibly be that good. Sure enough, it isn't. In fact, it deflates pretty alarmingly. But at least it has that beginning. [9 Mar 1990, p.27]
    • Boston Globe
    • 55 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Back to the Future III has no future. The reason is that it never works up much of a past as it sends its gull-winged DeLorean time machine back to the Old West. In effect, it goes back to the Age of Steam and runs out of gas. [25 May 1990, p.45]
    • Boston Globe
    • 55 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Phar Lap wastes its brilliant potential through embarrassingly inept acting, a cloying soundtrack, stereotyped characters and pedestrian direction. [13 Jul 1984]
    • Boston Globe
    • 10 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    A crass, witless knockoff of better films.
    • Boston Globe
    • 35 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    The flat tire of summer movies.
    • Boston Globe
    • 25 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    This one, a comic vacuum, is close to amateurish. [22 May 1992, p.32]
    • Boston Globe
    • 35 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Slides instantly into the realm of the forgettable.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Virtuosity doesn't really compute, but there's going to be more of its kind of cyberaction, not less. [4 Aug 1995, pg. 51]
    • Boston Globe
    • 36 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Lethal Weapon 3 is a big, dumb, noisy, comic strip of a movie that begins and ends in flames.
    • Boston Globe
    • 28 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    The only thing that keeps Cool World from imploding is that Bakshi turns it into a series of animator's riffs, with little explosions of toon action erupting like video game novas into the foreground of the story that isn't happening. [10 Jul 1992]
    • Boston Globe
    • 22 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    The kind of comedy that takes the fun out of stupidity.
    • Boston Globe
    • 27 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    A lame romantic comedy that is neither romantic nor comedic.
    • Boston Globe
    • 40 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    For all its antic grasping it lies flatter on the screen than its graphic novel source lies on the page.
    • Boston Globe
    • 23 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    A reassuring little cheeseball of a movie.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    It plays like a crude "Godfather" parody, the sort that might amuse as a 10-minute sketch on "Saturday Night Live," but curdles and collapses as a 143-minute film. [09 Dec 1983]
    • Boston Globe
    • 20 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    The most dumbed-down mob comedy in years. It's the kind of movie you tie around the ankles of a stiff you're tossing into deep water and never want to see again.
    • Boston Globe
    • 23 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Staying Alive, the sequel to John Travolta's "Saturday Night Fever," plays like wet cement. [16 Jul 1983]
    • Boston Globe
    • 40 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Nightwatch quickly declines from creepy to silly. [17 Apr 1998]
    • Boston Globe
    • 37 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    A sequel whose time has come - and gone.
    • Boston Globe
    • 28 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Van Sant winds up with disconnected, dispirited pieces that never come together and lift off the screen with a whoosh of sly high spirits. [20 May 1994]
    • Boston Globe
    • 39 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    The Bodyguard is a misfire. It's one of those perplexing but complete failures where all the ingredients show up, but somehow manage never to jell into anything convincing. [25 Nov 1992, p.35]
    • Boston Globe
    • 44 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    A supernatural thriller that is neither super, natural, nor thrilling.
    • 18 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    A flagrantly retro example of a tired genre that would vanish in a puff of smoke if anger management classes were to enter the picture, or if it would ever occur to any one of its endless stream of victims to reach for a light switch before proceeding into a spooky place.
    • Boston Globe
    • 33 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Gooding plays the worst role I've ever seen him play in a movie...he perpetuates a kind of black stereotype that should have become history years ago.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Fletch Lives isn't a total zero. Three, or maybe four, of Chevy Chase's wisecracks work. But everything else about the film is feeble and poky. Even its tastelessness lacks the coarse energy of vulgarity. It's hard to believe that the world has had to wait five years for this witless, insipid sequel to "Fletch," an original that's easy to top. [17 Mar 1989, p.45]
    • Boston Globe
    • 34 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    The question in Red Planet isn't whether there's any life on Mars, but whether there's any life in the film. The answer is no.
    • 20 Metascore
    • 25 Jay Carr
    Pretty lame stuff. Already it seems to be passing with the speed of light into the limbo of utterly forgettable "who-will-I-take-to-the-prom?" movies.

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