John Anderson

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For 223 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 54% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 44% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

John Anderson's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 61
Highest review score: 100 Hard Eight
Lowest review score: 0 Bio-Dome
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 27 out of 223
223 movie reviews
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 John Anderson
    There are not a lot of moments in documentary cinema that equal Citizenfour. Ms. Poitras was already at work on a film about government surveillance when Mr. Snowden presented himself, and she’s something of a lightning rod, too, one with little evident sympathy for Obama administration data mining.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 John Anderson
    Camp X-Ray isn’t anti-American, despite much of Ali’s rhetoric. It is about the evils of ignorance, wherever it rears its ugly head.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    World War II is often called the “last good war,” which has also meant that it was the last global conflict out of which the studios could make an unabashedly heroic movie. Fury is not that movie. And because it is not, it provides a few psychic disturbances beyond its shocking gore, burning soldiers blowing their brains out, children hanged from trees by the SS and imminent rape.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    Naturally, Mr. Murray is a joy to watch. And he has brought so much joy to so many grumpy people he deserves whatever accolades he can accrue, even for a career-assessment comedy like St. Vincent.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 John Anderson
    It also happens to feature a pair of performances that eclipse all else around them.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 John Anderson
    If the screenplay to Kill the Messenger were a news story, any capable copydesk would have kicked it back to the reporter — not for a shortage of facts, but a lack of dramatic soul.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    The taste with which one is left is not savory, exactly, but it certainly lingers.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 John Anderson
    Director David Mackenzie's gripping, convincing and convincingly violent convict drama owes its authenticity largely to the experiences of ex-prison therapist Jonathan Asser, who wrote its screenplay. But the opening 10 minutes are a virtuosic example of virtually wordless filmmaking.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 John Anderson
    One of the brighter aspects of Life of Crime, which otherwise ambles along good naturedly, is the casting.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 40 John Anderson
    In their engaging, fast-paced and ultimately ludicrous combo of espionage and mayhem, the makers of The November Man give us a very Putin-like villain in Arkady Federov (veteran Serbian actor Lazar Ristovski).
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 John Anderson
    With a mood and setting worthy of a murder story by Jack London, this audience-friendly, atmospheric work could be remade as a thriller, although that’s really what it is already.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 John Anderson
    What's so unfunny about peace, love and understanding? Plenty, it turns out. But for much of the movie, viewers will be asking themselves where the conflict is. And, by extension, the drama.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    Guaranteed to fan antigovernment sentiments among its audiences, Dinosaur 13 is less about paleontology than it is about prosecutorial overreach, political gamesmanship, dinosaur swindlers and true crime — if in fact crimes were even committed, and/or committed by the people accused.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 John Anderson
    Frank is a genuine original in a summer sea of sameness, and a darkly comedic manifesto against the cultural status quo.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 John Anderson
    Anita may be a tribute doc, but it’s one with real heft.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    The screenwriter/playwrights have processed the characters’ last words in ways that imbue them with as much humanity as possible.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 10 John Anderson
    Fredrik Bond’s direction and Matt Drake’s screenplay deliver a charisma-free trip into a world of gratuitous violence, contrivances and tedium.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 John Anderson
    The Square is journalism, but Noujaim’s agenda is greater than mere reportage.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 John Anderson
    For all its immersion in the roar, grease and danger of Formula One, the fact-based Rush — about the sport's great rivalry of the 1970s — is also more predictable than a pit stop, something well-suited to Mr. Howard. He's made perfectly palatable pictures, but never a truly great one, partly because he has such a weakness for the commercial and a consequent gift for the obvious.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 John Anderson
    "Witty and brisk" is not the name of a French breakfast cereal, but it does describe a certain brand of French film, the type that coquettishly flirts with comedy while sprinting in the direction of dry, sophisticated charm. Such is Haute Cuisine.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 John Anderson
    There's a near-sacred history in Hollywood of non-U.S.- born directors providing fresh perspectives on America. Miloš Forman. Alfred Hitchcock. Ang Lee. Ernst Lubitsch. Billy Wilder. For Prisoners, a stress-inducing trip into child abduction, the director is Quebecois filmmaker Denis Villeneuve, who gives us an American "hero" guaranteed to push many buttons, many times, and who might not have been allowed to be quite so awful, under a different director's lens.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 40 John Anderson
    A documentary as messy as the movement it tries to portray, 99%: The Occupy Wall Street Collaborative Film possesses energy, passion and about a dozen documentaries inside it yearning to breathe free.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 John Anderson
    Even as Cecil lives his life slightly adjacent to history, building a heroic film around him requires herculean effort.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 John Anderson
    There aren't many bright spots in Lovelace, although one is Amanda Seyfried's intoxicating smile, and another is the retinal insult delivered by a 16mm projector flaring out at the audience during the movie's opening moments, and which feels like an accusation. It's the odd film that indicts you just for watching. But Lovelace is an eccentric piece of cinema, made by unlikely people.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 John Anderson
    To call Lake Bell a magnetic, intelligent, blithely screwball leading lady in the Carole Lombard tradition might be selling her short. With In a World… , a rollicking laffer about the cutthroat voiceover biz in Los Angeles, she proves herself a comedy screenwriter to be reckoned with.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 10 John Anderson
    Shockingly, the kind of cringe-inducing material upon which Mr. Mazer has built a career as a writer for Sacha Baron Cohen ("Bruno," "Borat," "Da Ali G Show") doesn't work when rendered by types who could have been cast in "Notting Hill" (someone even makes a Hugh Grant joke). It's rather close to excruciating.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    Mr. Damon brings both a weary optimism and convincing physicality to Max, who is no revolutionary. He just wants to live, and is willing to don an exoskeletal combat suit and fight robots to do it.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 John Anderson
    Like the film itself, Porter’s handful of devoted, charismatic attorneys do a righteous job of reminding people that the accused are innocent until proven guilty, and that the criminal justice system seems otherwise disposed.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    Witty, wacky, multicharacter comedy My Best Day features a rural milieu that’s authentically American.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 John Anderson
    Some parts of the film are drily academic, but much of it is quite beautiful and artfully put together by the director.

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