Joshua Rothkopf

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For 784 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 44% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 53% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.6 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Joshua Rothkopf's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 Boyhood
Lowest review score: 20 The Ward
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 47 out of 784
784 movie reviews
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The movie isn’t particularly scary--not a crime when your goal is laughs. More egregious is the niggling fact that this simply isn’t as witty as "Shaun of the Dead," forever the yuks-meet-yucks standard.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Shutter Island is slumming: minor but enjoyably nuts.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Too many digital effects ruin the spell of a tactile world of evil objects scheming your demise. But even a mediocre FD is better than more Jigsaw.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Though wildly uneven, the film sometimes comes within screaming distance of the sick ironies of "Heathers." That's how loudly Goldthwait still knows how to yell.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The movie has a centerfold sheen to it--and some lesbianic soft-core flirtation to match--as its plot dives deeply into "Twilight"-esque heavy-melo meltdown in the last act. Cody throws one too many losses at Needy; the screenwriter loses her satiric way about halfway through. But for a while, this has real fangs.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    There’s still too much flashback material here about apprentices and evil cops. But if you’ve ever raged at nameless, insensitive service people, you won’t mind seeing them strapped into a rotating turret, the shotgun cocking.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Extract, for all its surface reminders of Judge’s 1999 cult hit, "Office Space" (it’s set around a suburban bottling plant), shows its maker taking the smallest step toward lesser comic matters of infidelity and bong abuse. It feels slightly beneath him. That’s not to say you should skip it.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    It’s a movie that tips toward overkill--even Ronan’s voice is amplified into a weird whisper. More quiet would have helped.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Berlinger is fully invested here, but a little distance might have helped.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Forgive the film its "Napoleon Dynamite" overquirk; a loving god is watching all, genuflected to on bedroom-wall posters and seen in the film's final five minutes--and if you're not a Rush fan, this is not your movie
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    You sense the Demme-esque working-class comedy that might have been.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The new film sometimes feels too snazzy in its jittery cinematography, but the stunts make it through the budget upgrade intact.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Giggles, not belly laughs, come frequently, and it’ll help if viewers love U.K. comics.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Watching the new film is like getting upsettingly full on insubstantial tapas: You would never say no to just one more, but there’s better.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The movie isn’t adventurous, but I’m sure glad it exists.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Moodysson hasn’t exactly descended to "Babel"-level pabulum with Mammoth, his first foray into English; these characters are too fascinatingly thorny, and he still has a supple way with a pulse-throbbing dance tune.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    For all his brilliance with choreography, Woo is flummoxed by the thousands of actual human extras, though there’s no denying his commitment to the finer points of battle tactics (yawn).
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Maybe this is a good time to mention that the director is Richard Linklater, usually a lot more versatile. Try to imagine a version of Linklater’s "School of Rock" that didn’t pivot on the manic music teacher played by Jack Black but instead, perhaps, on his boring roommate.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The problem here, though, is that the movie often feels fat instead of lean. A terribly purple folk score by Kate and Anna McGarrigle hypes the spiritual aspects of the Inuit way of life; you’ll die laughing on the tundra.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    A manufactured kid-in-jeopardy climax and Blake’s rehab stint blow the mood. Until then, this is great American acting.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    So while his live-action scenes leave much to be desired, Khrzhanovsky fills the margins of A Room and a Half with glorious doodles: yawning cats penning love letters to former flings; spectral violins floating high above the city; spiky silhouettes pouring out of a truck to bring violence to the ghetto.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The surprising thing here is how smoothly this over-iced cake goes down.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    This is meat-and-potatoes genre work, certainly superior to a Hollywood product like "Edge of Darkness," but not by much.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The film is vigorous exercise for those who prefer their mysteries knowing and knotty.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    you sense that "The Hangover" loomed large over this production. Still, Eve has a true flair for zingers, and the movie’s heart survives intact.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    There's lots of volume in these tunes--the soundtrack is killer--and at least everyone gets their rocks off.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Alas, it all comes off as hit and myth, mainly due to our leaden, buzz-cut hero, Perseus (Avatar’s Worthington, no Harry Hamlin), and zero sparks of heavenly-body chemistry or humor.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The doc dutifully allows for these varying viewpoints, but in a mode that’s not especially captivating, despite a guitar score by Brokeback Mountain’s Gustavo Santaolalla.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    It makes you laugh in fits and starts, but more often it feels toothless and exhausted, the kind of project that exists to give Ray Liotta work.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The Good Heart dilutes Cox’s gravitas with quirk.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    She has real sympathy--characters that might have been brittle, mockable creations in another writer-director’s hands gain resonance here. But the filmmaker also might have very little to say apart from the way guilt enters into life, and then suddenly recedes.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The meal here is mainly nostalgia, larded with a thick sauce of irony.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Can they really be setting up a sequel at the end, with Robin as an outlaw? Let’s hope so--that’s the movie you actually wanted.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The esteemed director, Ken Loach, isn’t really a fantasist--and it shows.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    When the movie remembers to be the drug-spiked, hard-R comedy you hope for, it’s more than just a fun romp (and, incidentally, superior to "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," the rom-com from which its Britpop libertine spins off).
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Like the vampires that cavort throughout it, this horror-comedy doesn’t have much chance of surviving the harsh light of scrutiny--but as a loopy, antiserious lark, it should prove plenty alive on the midnight-movie circuit.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    So even though the science fair was something your other classmates did while you mastered Pitfall!, the sights in Whiz Kids will no doubt stir you.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    A marvelous thought, credited to Orson Welles: You can handle shit with velvet gloves, but the gloves only get shittier; the shit doesn't get glovier. As wondrous as the regal Helen Mirren can be, it's a sad day when her queenly demeanor gets dunked in doo-doo.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Now, with this underwhelming sequel, Spain proves it can stand toe to toe with any nation in the manufacture of unnecessary follow-ups.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Crisply and efficiently, we're transported to the realm of the kidnapping thriller--and if Brit writer-director J Blakeson knew how to sustain tension for another hour and change, we'd be heralding the next Jonathan "Sexy Beast" Glazer.
    • Time Out New York
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Though play with fire she might, couldn't screenwriter Jonas Frykberg have played with a little button called DELETE? There's no reason why a two-hour movie should feel like three, nor require quite so much fidelity to Larsson's plot curlicues.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    A smart horror film will fatten its pigs before the slaughter, and the mock doc The Last Exorcism feeds its prize hog nicely.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    This disappointing dramatization, mounted with generic blandness by Jean-François Richet, makes no case for the man's larger significance, nor does any emotional digging at all. Such detachment was no doubt considered artistically shrewd-it's a big mistake.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The transformation that you anticipate never comes; the movie feels strangled.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The film's mood is so somber and minimal, it might be confused for deep. Had the plot (meager and one-last-job-predictable) zipped along, that wouldn't feel like such a problem.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Simply skip the first part entirely: "Killer Instinct" bulges with a disconnected jumble of nightclub attacks and fence-clipping escapes you've seen better elsewhere. Yet a tide change happens with the superior Public Enemy No. 1, which takes the subject's raging ego as its cue.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    It ends where you want it to begin.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    A completely unnecessary sequel, plays a lot like "The Godfather, Part III"-lush, self-parodic and cut adrift from urgency.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Despite a roster of off-kilter documentarians each directing an episode, Freakonomics only partly delivers the sense of traipsing into uncharted territory.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Lane, experiencing her career heyday, is sweet enough to have you rooting for her, even if her journey to the winner's circle is an odds-on favorite.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    If only the script had been content to stick with its let's-start-a-band verve. Like many a musical biopic, Nowhere Boy wants to explain away the man (as if a song like "In My Life" weren't explanation enough).
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The 3-D effects, so promising on paper, don't really add much-and, worse, there's a overreliance on slow-motion, which kills the fun.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Writer-director Von Trotta, an icon of the New German Cinema, doesn't have the technical chops for the fireworks you desire, so she settles for wan earnestness.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    It probably would have helped if Walker (who credits two other codirectors) had chosen just one of those avenues for deeper study; her doc has a vertiginous way of feeling arty and ephemeral at one moment, humane and maybe too earthbound the next.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Some moments are so deliciously shivery-our heroes' breath condensing in the air like in John Carpenter's "The Thing"-that you wish the film were naughtier and less nice.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Night Catches Us surges awkwardly in its latter third, suddenly aware that a promising setup isn't enough. Regardless, here is an honorable attempt to address a complex chapter of African-American pride, one that's usually hidden under hairdos and wah-wah pedals.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    A quintet of actors carve out a beautiful, ill-fated geometry in John Wells's layoff drama, which might play like a retort to "Up in the Air" if it didn't have shortcomings of its own.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The doc's straining for a larger, Varda-esque metaphor about the sad humans on the sidelines is ill-advised.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Firth is exceptional in letting us into his dissolving pride.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The funny thing? It all works reasonably well, especially if you have a yen for the urbane register of city kids and their amazingly cool parents.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The film definitely gets it up, but has some commitment issues.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The profusion of Dudes is - pardon the apt pun - game-changing. By turns a fierce megalomaniac and a Lebowskian monk, Bridges supplies more soul than any sci-fi sequel deserves.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The Way Back then takes its time, creeping through gorgeous locations in Bulgaria, Morocco and Pakistan, and basically feeling like a two-hour-plus version of the desert scene from "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly."
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    If The Woodmans has something profound to say-and it does, unwittingly-it's that art can't raise a child solo.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The movie's first hour happens to be its most absorbing. Director Alexei Popogrebsky sets up the quiet tensions between his two generationally divided characters like a chess match pocked with occasional power grabs.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Into Eternity has the grandeur of ominous suggestion, but might have benefitted from a director more creatively unbound-an Errol Morris ready to play around at the end of the world.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Just as soon as that rarest Lebowskian blend of casual pursuit and big-world conspiracy begins to emerge from the fog, Cold Weather appears to lose its nerve (or run out of money).
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Sometimes, the debunking is overshadowed by cringe-inducing graphics involving pills with little legs running toward a finish line.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Unknown is probably the movie "The Tourist" wanted to be, if it had a pulse. Its sheer momentum makes Neeson and Kruger more attractive than even Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    A largely sexless sex romp, has such a winning sense of middle-aged exhaustion to it that you might want to add a star or two, especially if you're familiar with the banalities of matrimonial bliss.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    You outsmart the movie way too soon.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Ultimately, the returns of the film's premise can't justify a nearly two-and-a-half-hour squirm. The savagery is honest, raw and hardly entertainment.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    With unexpected supernatural restraint, the movie approaches a religious parable; am I being unfair in wishing it had a touch more apocalyptic hysteria to it?
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    As brought to life in the stentorian tones of Ben Kingsley, the curator comes off like a driven visionary, but his actual efforts aren't dramatized enough. The paintings speak more articulately: doomy, dank colors and oppressive shapes.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Redemptively, the cast goes a long way: Jean Desailly is perfect as a jowly literary celeb deep in midlife crisis, while the aloof Françoise Dorléac is magnetic as his airline stewardess and all-too-scrutable love object.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    No matter how predictable his arc is, writer-director Thomas McCarthy (The Station Agent) never loses sight of the difficulties of cashflow and making one's weekly nut. You'll want to give his movie-and his secret weapon, the lovably neurotic Bobby Cannavale, as a recent divorcé hoping to co-coach the team-a pass for sweetness.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Illegal has caused a stir in Belgium, and the sincerity of the movie can't be denied. But there's little emotion to hold on to, apart from a mother's impotent concern about her wayward teenage son (Gontcharov), still on the outside.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Superb limb-erasing effects and lush cinematography are bonuses, though not so much the cloying presence of American Idol's Carrie Underwood.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Meek's Cutoff has found its passionate defenders, those who admire it almost because of its meandering, heavily politicized nature. Yet you might try it-and try it again-and still only grab a handful of dust.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    There's no Deep Throat this time, but Tom Wilkinson does his best Ben Bradlee as a hawkish legal mentor, while Kevin Kline coos menacingly as Lincoln's Nixonian war secretary, Edwin Stanton, a man seeking to hang prisoners out of political expediency. It all seems a little forced.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Cave of Forgotten Dreams feels stuck in a middling zone of too much conjecture and not enough scholarship.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Some viewers might give the movie a few extra points for its retro vibe of taciturn badassedness. But little punctures the wall of emotional remove-the pulse rate is way too controlled for entertainment's sake.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Based on a banned short story from the 1920s, Caterpillar might be read as a reaction to hawkish nationalism, but it's more a cry for the unknown soldier in the kitchen and bedroom.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The movie skips along episodically; it's not quite as sharp as a war narrative needs to be, even if its nightmarish psychology feels spot-on.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    There's too much coyness about the implicit romance across the table; several other tensions concerning female independence go mostly unexplored. But the film's quiet focus on a woman's anxiety is not unwelcome.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Had the big boy himself, Steven Spielberg, made his directorial debut with this slam-bang sci-fi thriller set in suburban 1979 (and not merely produced what amounts to an homage), he would have been celebrated as a gifted bringer of mayhem: a Michael Bay before there was one.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    As with so many modern fantasy films, the sequences here seem designed to go viral on YouTube in a flash of coolness, not necessarily linger in the mind or heart.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The movie works-to the extent that it does-because of its sharply un-PC script (credited to Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky) that sometimes feels like a Hollywood rewrite of "Election."
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The tale itself is extraordinary, so why not let it do the talking? When Crime After Crime sifts through the facts, we feel the pull of justice; those moments might be enough.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The sincere director, Oliver Schmitz, injects too much movie into his movie; life (above all) would have been enough.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Swaddled with a lacquer of nostalgia that passes for cultural insight, this one-night-in-sweatpants drama will make you yearn for a moratorium on teen movies-at least ones so aggressively dewy-eyed.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    When Sarah's Key leans into the horror (as it should), it's harrowing. Alas, that's only half the time.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The mood of this movie will brew with you for a while, even if it swirls around characters who aren't quite persuasive.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Comfortable with subtle Proustian detachment, the director has taken another stab at colossal scope, this time getting lost in the cerebral folds.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The middle section of the story is where Rise truly takes off, perhaps in ways that will have viewers forgiving the rest.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Breathtaking imagery competes with a scary lack of human interest in this hypnotic, potentially alienating documentary.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    But you do take the film home with you - to all your own toys - and that's what decent horror is supposed to do.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Love Crime soon plummets into a flashback-laden mess, a shame since it was marginally stronger as a psychosexual game of dominance.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    Gus Van Sant directs his players just shy of mush; he's a filmmaker capable of brilliant dares (Milk, Paranoid Park) and shocking whiffs (Finding Forrester, the pointless remake of Psycho). This one's kind of in the middle.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Joshua Rothkopf
    The effort - by Vedder & Co., as well as Crowe - is heroic, if not quite persuasive. Legends aren't made of longevity alone, and while you wouldn't wish Kurt Cobain's pain on anyone, you can't help but feel this band survived well past its meaning.

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