For 239 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 48% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 49% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 0.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Jay Scott's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Dead Ringers
Lowest review score: 0 Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 60 out of 239
239 movie reviews
    • 85 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The plot is squeezed dry in this bloody Valentine from Hollywood and becomes annoyingly predictable. Thriller stumbles on its own success
    • 78 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Ruthless People is a farce rather than a satire and it's far less ambivalent toward the behavior it depicts than All in the Family was - it actively encourages the audience to tee-hee over people being horrible to each other. Dale Launer's script is often extremely funny, especially when Midler is around, but it's an extended sick joke that doesn't realize it's got a disease. [27 June 1986, p.D1]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Rob Reiner's not up to it: when the movie is meant to be romantic, the tone is frequently mushy and sexless, and when it's meant to be anachronistic and satiric, it's vaudeville-vulgar.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Hurt is so good at capturing the charming and chilling Ned that he almost makes up for the film's two primary weaknesses: Kasdan's inexperience and a message of significant unpleasantness. [28 Aug 1981, p.P17]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 76 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The reach of this sprawling, ambitious epic often exceeds its grasp. It has something in common with its hero. [5 Dec 1981]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The technical packaging of his picture is terrific - with its high-tech Manhattan and its split screens and slow motion, Dressed to Kill is - but the goods it opens to reveal are shoddily second-hand. [26 July 1980]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 72 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Teenmeister John Hughes, begatter of Pretty in Pink and Ferris Bueller's Day Off, has permitted Planes, Trains and Automobiles to be promoted as his first "adult" feature, but it's actually a re-run of a movie he wrote in 1983, National Lampoon's Vacation, another primitive cartoon for the kinds of adults who find Neil Simon too sophisticated. [27 Nov 1987]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The trouble with Body Double is not that it sets "new lows" in the treatment of women or anything else, but that a stunningly original talent has willingly hitched itself to a derivative vision. The person De Palma really degrades is himself. [26 Oct 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Because it attempts so much more than Excalibur, the disappointment of Knightriders cuts deeper. Romero wants to tell the tale, to comment on it and to relate it to the present; he wants to bring contemporary satirical life to the myth, a service he performed cannily for the Dracula legend in Martin. [18 April 1981]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Kilmer is an improvement on Robert Hays of Airplane], but both gents perform with the facility you'd expect from a random sampling of Gentlemen's Quarterly models; like any svelte clotheshorse, Kilmer is good-looking yet self-effacing and he doesn't seem in the least perturbed that his wardrobe upstages him.[25 June 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Delicatessen is a carniverous sausage - lots of fat, a few meaty bits. [10 Apr 1992]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    There are lively, compelling scenes, particularly in the first hour - Raimi has an indubitable talent for camp mayhem - but the picture escalates into absurdity and the last half hour, essentially a chase sequence, is marred by suprisingly cheesy special effects. [24 Aug. 1990]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The Year of Living Dangerously is chic, enigmatic, self-assured - and empty. [18 Feb 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Fried Green Tomatoes was obviously cooked up with the best of intentions but, like the dish to which it refers, it's rudimentary eats - not quite junk food, but not quite nourishing, either. [03 Jan 1992]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Although Tom Stoppard's script lifts Ballard's spare dialogue directly from the page, the context in which it is placed is kitsch. [11 Dec 1987]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    First Blood is a gung-ho action flick fast enough and brutal enough to become Stallone's first non-Rocky hit; on the profound sympathetic levels it seeks to address, however, it is an emission of profound stupidity. [22 Oct 1982]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    With Redford, less is not more, less is nigh on to nothing. He's natural in The Natural, but he's artless: it has been years since he played the politician in The Candidate, but he's still running for office on screen. The gig he wants is God, and that's what he gets to play in The Natural, a Greek deity with an arm made of home runs and a halo made of Sun-In. [11 May 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    There are individual sequences alternately amusing and touching. [08 May 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The film is primarily an excuse for Chase to demonstrate that though he may be a movie star he has yet to learn how to create, let alone sustain, a character, and for director Harold (Caddyshack) Ramis and screenwriter John (National Lampoon's Class Reunion) Hughes to demonstrate that some movie stars get the colleagues they deserve. [2 Aug 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The larger budget has given Scanners a high-gloss Hollywood look, the editing is occasionally elegant and the special effects, which consist mostly of imaginative ways of turning actors into meat, provoke from the audience the desired response ("Oh, yuk]"), but he is careful to keep the violence within currently accepted boundaries. [19 Jan 1981]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Documentaries show us what can be seen; fiction features, to qualify as art, should visualize for us the usually unseen. Benny's Video, in which the thought processes of the characters are never delivered to the camera, is all surface. Its implicit claim is that by doing nothing, it is doing everything. But there are times, and this is one of them, when less is merely less. [27 Mar 1993]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The Bostonians, from the novel by Henry James, is the story of their relationship, one of the strangest in literature. Unfortunately, that strangeness has survived the transfer to the screen less than intact, and satiric oddity has been replaced by romantic banality. Redgrave's performance - red-eyed, quivering, opalescent - is peerless, the one incontrovertible reason to see the film. [23 Nov 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Altered States can be accused of many things, but never of harboring a new idea. Because the script's lessons have been drowned in fruity religious imagery, Altered States is at most an accomplished horror film, the kind of stomach-churning movie to which people like David Cronenberg aspire. [23 Jan 1981]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    When Christine's on the warpath, she foams at the grille. But her movie doesn't do right by her snottiness. Her movie, never scary but campily entertaining for about an hour, loses compression toward the end and the grumpy old thing finally sputters to a stall - gets flattened, poops out. [09 Dec 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The humour is based entirely on inversion which worked in your cartoons, and even on the TV show, but it's not enough to hold up a movie, even with the helping hand provided by a disembodied hand. [22 Nov 1991]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    It must be said that the closing sequence, in which Arthur meets the misbegotten Mordred on an orange battlefield illuminated by a shield-sized red sun, is an epic, Oedipal masterpiece of authentic mythic power, a sequence so strong it shakes the torpor from one's shoulders and induces regret that the rest of the saga has been so juvenile, so lifeless and so lacking poetry or Shakespearean sweep. [11 April 1981]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    The Two Jakes itself is less tragic than petulant, mired in a self-pitying remembrance of things past. [10 Aug 1990]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    In terms of psychology, it's an abysmal failure, too real to be symbolic, too symbolic to be realistic. [25 May 1990]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    David Keith, a native of Tennessee, had a tiny role in The Rose (as Bette Midler's soldier friend) and he is one of the few in the Brubaker cast whose accent is authentic and who appears to have the wherewithal to survive in a penitentiary. His scenes are the only respite from the movie's shrill, simplistic self-congratulation. [21 June 1980]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Jay Scott
    Neither Nicholson nor the talented Miss Steenburgen, in her film debut, could rise above the patched-together script. The promising parody of anti-mythic Westerns, and of mellerdrammers (the railroad wants to snitch Julia's land), decays into a love story whose parameters are all too narrow and all too familiar. [07 Oct 1978]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)

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