Joe Morgenstern

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For 2,198 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 42% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 56% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Joe Morgenstern's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Lowest review score: 0 Just Married
Score distribution:
2198 movie reviews
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    This is less a film in the lustrous Pixar tradition than a Disney fairy tale told with Pixar's virtuosity. As such, it's enjoyable, consistently beautiful, fairly conventional, occasionally surprising and ultimately disappointing.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    With all its flaws, though, The Grey Zone deserves to be respected, and to be seen.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Affecting but formulaic.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Mama itself is above average as a piece of filmmaking, even if its scare quotient is middling or below. That's OK with me. I was content to be impressed by the skill of the first-time director, Andrés Muschietti; absorbed by the performances and smitten by some startling images.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Ms. Kawase’s sweet, slow film — very slow, I’m obliged to say — becomes a meditation on solitary lives lived at the margins of society; on old age, and on the urgency of telling our stories, which may sometimes include recipes.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Mike Leigh's latest film preserves the mystery of why another marriage has flourished over decades. That's not the stated subject of Another Year, but it's at the center of this enjoyable though insistently schematic comedy.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Eventually, though, Ghost Town buckles beneath the weight of contrivance -- so many ghosts to dispel, so many lessons to learn.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    The tone is earnest, with dialogue that sometimes plods when you want it to fly — a running time of 127 minutes doesn’t help the pacing — and a couple of pieces of casting are infelicitous: Jim Parsons gives a flat performance as the fictional Paul Stafford, NASA’s lead engineer, and Glen Powell is years too young to play John Glenn, who looks like a gung-ho frat boy.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    A smart entertainment that trades on Mr. Jackson's forceful presence, a cast of extremely likable young actors and lots of basketball action.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    The new version is out of scale with the basic premise -- too much rain, too much water, too much doom, gloom and intricate eccentricity.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    This English heart-warmer isn't all that kinky. It's actually quite sweet-spirited, as well as unswervingly formulaic.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    It's a diverting mess, sometimes even a delightful mess.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Its ironic complexities tease the brain without pleasing the heart.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Will the extremely extravagant special effects prove sufficient to sustain the picture? Surely they will, this time. Still, there's a sense of fatigue in the scenes that don't involve high-tensile webs and high-tension suspense.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    It’s a marvelous story about science and humanity, plus a great performance by Benedict Cumberbatch, plus first-rate filmmaking and cinematography, minus a script that muddles its source material to the point of betraying it. Those strengths make the movie worth seeing, but the writing keeps eating away at the narrative’s clarity — and integrity — until it’s impossible to separate the glib fictions from the remarkable facts.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    At the center of this swirl of events, poignant recollections and utter pandemonium, Ms. Portman’s Jackie is a mesmerizing presence.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    The problem isn't a lack of substance, and certainly not a dearth of talent, but a shortage of fun.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Though Hannibal the movie is unresolved in ways the book is not, that isn't Mr. Hopkins's fault. He's still a star for all seasons, and seasonings.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    I know this sounds like great fun, and some of it is, but there's nowhere near enough good stuff to fill the 114-minute running time.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    A movie you want to like, and a movie you can enjoy if you cut its slackness some slack.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    The movie is a pleaser, for the most part, even though the attitude it takes toward its subject is often problematic.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    This Flubbery fantasy won't win any prizes for elegant craftsmanship or originality, but it's entertaining, good-natured and a slam dunk to be a hit with young kids.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Mr. Del Toro is a fearless actor, and his Jerry, a heroin addict lurching toward redemption, is the heart and soul, as well as the haunted, rubbery visage, of a story of grief and loss that would be fairly lifeless without him.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    By all that's unholy, this third edition of the high-emission franchise should have been at least as awful as the second one was. (The first one was good fun.) Yet it's surprisingly entertaining in its deafening fashion, despite the absence of Vin Diesel and Paul Walker, the co-stars of parts one and two.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    It's a deafening, sometimes boring, occasionally startling and ultimately impressive war movie with a concern for what it is that makes us human.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Anger is the rocket fuel of drama. Of the four women in Nicole Holofcener's Friends With Money, only Frances McDormand's Jane is flamingly angry, and she's the most vivid character in the group.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Trumbo doesn't pretend to be tough-minded about its subject, and its failure to date the letters is an annoyance. But the substance of those letters, along with documentary footage and a touching appearance by Kirk Douglas, throws a baleful light on a bleak chapter of American history.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    In the wake of Walker’s death, it constitutes a farewell of fitting elegance.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    A little humanity can go a long way to make up for a movie's shortcomings, and there's more than a little in Ladder 49, a surprisingly stirring celebration of heroic firefighters.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Joe Morgenstern
    Mr. Ayoade's new film, adapted from Dostoyevsky's novella "The Double," is at least as startling as "Submarine" in its visual design, eerie environments and unusual premise. But it's lifeless, for the most part, a drama suffocated by its schematic style.

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