For 1,480 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 42% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 55% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.8 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

J.R. Jones' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 58
Highest review score: 100 Encounters at the End of the World
Lowest review score: 0 The Informers
Score distribution:
1480 movie reviews
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    Elon's documentary is fascinating precisely because its high moral tone is compromised by self-interest.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    Some have called this neo-noir, but aside from the setting there’s nothing "neo" about it; as in classic noir, the characters are slowly but surely ensnared by their own baser impulses.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    A biting academic fable about the importance of aggression over intellect.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    Good-humored and enormously entertaining but also sentimental and a little dishonest.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    Its mix of personal reminiscence (Mario made his screen debut playing Sweetback as a boy) and cultural history is fascinating. This engages in a fair amount of mythmaking itself, but its lesson in self-empowerment is both vivid and sincere.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Illuminating with their energy and wit.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 J.R. Jones
    Winterbottom and screenwriter Tony Grisoni were clearly motivated by conscience, but I can't help thinking that Stephen Frears's "Dirty Pretty Things," a much more conventional and contrived movie about third-world refugees, will have a greater social impact than this murky art-house item.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Ronald Bronstein, who wrote and directed the disquieting indie Frownland, steps in front of the cameras for this similarly lo-fi drama, and his loose-limbed performance as the brash, irresponsible father of two young boys establishes him as a genuine triple threat.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Morris's trademark device of superimposing giant type over his talking heads - Willing! Manacled Mormon! - often made me wonder if Morris were exposing the world of tabloid journalism or participating in it.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 J.R. Jones
    Emotionally charged but not entirely honest documentary.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    It's become a critical cliche to say that everyone in the U.S. should see a particular war documentary, but even the most selfish citizen might want to check out The Ground Truth, because unlike the Iraqi victims of the war, the American ones are all around us.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    A fascinating allegory of modern-day Iran.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 J.R. Jones
    The scenes between husband and wife are spectacularly awkward and arresting, though the movie grows more dubious the nearer the guys get to their shooting session in a local hotel room.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    This fascinating video documentary covers a nine-month rehearsal of Shakespeare's final play by inmates at the Luther Luckett Correctional Complex in La Grange, Kentucky.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 J.R. Jones
    Inception delivers dazzling special effects and a boatload of stars, but it sags and eventually buckles under the weight of its complicated premise.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 100 J.R. Jones
    Of course no Western director can make a movie about Africa without being accused of colonialism himself, and some critics have faulted The Last King of Scotland for focusing on its white hero as black corpses pile up around him. But although the movie takes place on an international political stage, it's still a drama of individual allegiance.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Writer-director Celine Sciamma breaks little ground here, but her story is nicely scaled to the gender-rigid world of childhood, where boys playing soccer together take as much pride in their spitting skills as any scored goal.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    Carion might have found a more artful way to dramatize the case's geopolitical impact, but this is still pretty interesting stuff.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Despite a few bloodcurdling shocks, this handsome Spanish ghost story from producer Guillermo del Toro follows in the suggestive, richly romantic tradition of the old Val Lewton chillers.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Genuinely sad: few bands have burst onto the scene with such a perfectly realized look, sound, and philosophy or been more trapped by their own meatheaded genius.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 J.R. Jones
    A harrowing drama spun from the most mundane material.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 40 J.R. Jones
    There's a lot less here than meets the eye.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Italian writer-director Emanuele Crialese is best known for the art-house piffle "Respiro" (2002), a sun-kissed fairy tale that didn't prepare me for the weight and solidity of this historical drama about a Sicilian peasant family immigrating to the U.S.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    This second feature doesn't resonate with nearly as much power, but its suspenseful story of two generations of career criminals in the city's northerly Charlestown neighborhood has a similarly haunting quality.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    Robert Wieckiewicz is good as the conflicted protagonist, but the most valuable player here is cinematographer Jolanta Dylewska, who turns in handsome work even though most of the action transpires in inky blackness.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    As the furiously passive-aggressive title character, Jonah Hill delivers a craftier comic performance than anything in his box-office hits (Superbad, Get Him to the Greek), but what really elevates the story above its shticky premise is the combined neuroses of all three characters.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    The equation of Gilliam with Quixote is so obvious to everyone involved that Fulton and Pepe can hardly be blamed for adopting it.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 J.R. Jones
    Yu's portrait of Darger, which clocks in at 82 minutes, skims over the only aspect of his life that commands respect: his craft.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 J.R. Jones
    Herzog's wrenching interviews with the victims' relatives, may not turn anyone against capital punishment, but they're gripping nonetheless. Incidentally, the spiritual inquiry Herzog aims for here has already been rendered onscreen, in Steve James and Peter Gilbert's powerful documentary "At the Death House Door" (2008).
    • 74 Metascore
    • 70 J.R. Jones
    Contemporary footage of sea creatures, reptiles, and insects serves to illustrate various chapters in our journey from the ocean floor to the megastore, and though the film's science isn't exactly rigorous, its photography and music are splendid.

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