Joe Morgenstern
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For 1,879 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 41% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 57% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 0.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Joe Morgenstern's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 We Are the Best!
Lowest review score: 0 Life or Something Like It
Score distribution:
1,879 movie reviews
    • 50 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    Instead of biting wit, though, the movie settles for sketch humor, standard-brand raunch and toothless slapstick that trivializes everything it touches.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    (It doesn't hurt that Ms. Redgrave gets to play opposite Franco Nero, who was once the love of her life and is the father of her son.) Not even she can transform lines like "Destiny wanted us to meet again."
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    Comes on like an overproduced coma, and leaves you comatose by the end. In between are 127 minutes of intermittent chaos that feel like a lifetime.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    This dreary drama telegraphs every punch, emotion and plot point with a dedication that would have done the old Western Union proud.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    A deeply dreadful movie -- no, a shallowly dreadful movie -- that's too unpleasant and repetitive to be entertaining, even as camp.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    The lesson here is simple: In the digital realm, the bigger the worse. What looks distinctive and believable in short takes and small doses can turn blatantly phony and deadly familiar when the scale is pumped up. Prince of Persia pumps itself up to the bursting point, and bursts.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    Cowboys versus aliens is a concept that may make you smile in anticipation, but wipe that smile off your face before buying your ticket.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    This new Alfie is earnest -- irony is so last century -- and not angry at all, since working-class anger would mean nothing here, because class means nothing here. Nothing means anything here.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    Guess Who is, impurely and simply, a comic premise borrowed, turned around and dumbed down to the level of sketch or sub-sketch humor.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    The narrative core suffers a conspicuous meltdown, though not before Mr. Mann gets to stage a few impressive action sequences, the best and loudest of which concerns a shootout in a curvilinear tunnel. As for the climax, set against a massive torchlight parade through the streets of Jakarta, it’s very elaborate, and terribly dumb.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    Operates in a dead zone roughly equidistant between parody and idiocy. You do get the connection between tongue and cheek, but much of the humor still goes thud.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    The crucial evidence has to do with rigor mortis. The movie's a stiff too.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    It's dispiriting to see how little attention the filmmakers have paid to the dramatic - read human - possibilities of the original, or how much they've been overwhelmed by technology's demands. It's as though rogue programs took over the production.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    I can't find much slack to cut the film, except to say that it's a potboiler cooked in an upscale Teflon pot.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    The only reason to see this dreary parade of deception and venality is Mark Wahlberg's performance as a disgraced ex-cop caught up in the thick of menacing events he can't understand. It's striking how this tightly focused actor can find his own firmly grounded reality in the falsest of surroundings.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 0 Joe Morgenstern
    Any notions of demolishing black stereotypes -- and what else could have possessed Mr. Smith to do this? -- are dashed by the coarseness of it all, and by the narrative incoherence; a surprising plot twist turns a sloppy action-comedy into a totally different movie, and an even worse one.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    There's nothing to be said in favor of sitting through garbage, and this movie is awash in the stuff, both figuratively and literally: One of its main locales is a vast garbage dump.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    There's no transcending a prosaic plot and several flat performances.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    If glum were good and bleak were best, Hart's War would be a standout.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    A movie's script is its fate, which means this one is doomed.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    Ever so slightly defective in the area of coherence; it plays as if it should have been written by a committee but they didn't bother to convene one.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 49 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    Mr. Statham, the specialist in English tough guys who was so affecting in "The Bank Job," has more to offer than The Mechanic has the grace to receive.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    In all candor, and with all the amity I can muster, Divergent is as dauntingly dumb as it is dauntingly long.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    Relevance can't rescue this would-be epic from the swamps of inertia, absurdity and sentimentality.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 48 Metascore
    • 30 Joe Morgenstern
    What's missing is an emotional center. This Sinbad, with its flying ship and becalmed script, seems destined to be DreamWorks's version of Disney's "Treasure Planet."
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 48 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    Adam Sandler's 50 First Dates isn't just slovenly and smarmy but creepy.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 48 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    What's missing is dramatic subtext and surprise, as well as any playfulness that might have kept us guessing about the plot.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    If I could find some facet to praise, I'd be glad to do so, but the production's mediocrity is all-pervasive -- story, character, graphic design, even music -- and it all points to a failure of corporate imagination, or maybe just nerve.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 48 Metascore
    • 10 Joe Morgenstern
    Built from an alloy of absurdium and stupidium, with the latter, heavier element dominating the mix.
    • Wall Street Journal
    • 48 Metascore
    • 20 Joe Morgenstern
    By the end I could have used a Bulleit to the mouth.

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