For 1,063 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 41% higher than the average critic
  • 4% 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)

Keith Phipps' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 Das Boot
Lowest review score: 0 The Avengers
Score distribution:
1,063 movie reviews
    • 81 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    It’s a studied movie that gives itself over to bursts of intensity, and between them sometimes threatens to become as spellbound by its subjects as they become with each other.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Only the finale threatens to undo all that hard work. Though well-done, the last act leans less on the facts of the case than on Hollywood contrivances, heightening the tension with embellishments that feel at odds with the methodical, deliberate film leading up to them.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Developed by Mitchell and the actors, the characters don't always seem consistent from moment to moment, but a sharp sense of humor and comfortable performances by a committed and--it must be said--remarkably limber cast help smooth over the rough edges.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Gripping action and vulnerable heroes writ large. It boldly goes somewhere different and makes it hard to leave the film not hoping for a return voyage soon.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    The final effect is less haunting than was probably intended, but Butterfly Kiss is worth a look.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Though it's a stylistic change from what Zhang's been up to lately, this isn't entirely new territory for him.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    An ingenious, maddening film inspired by the "many lives of Bob Dylan."
    • 81 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Klayman captures the earlier parts of that story so compellingly that the finale's "to be continued" quality ends up playing into the film's unspoken goal: raising awareness of one man's ongoing attempts to better the world through art.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Played with black humor that never gets in the way of the horror, Natali’s film cleverly exploits Dren’s uncanny semi-humanity.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    The pleasure here, as before, comes from watching skilled professionals team up for a job well done.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    It’s a great-looking film--and an impressive use of 3D--but ultimately, the story makes it memorable.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Red Riding’s depiction of the avarice and corruption possible when regions become kingdoms unto themselves feels simultaneously cynical and true.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    Yes, it's fundamentally business as usual, but it's the best kind of business as usual, and it finds everyone working in top form. Abrams imports and enlarges "Alias'" smooth, stylish, yet remarkably visceral approach to action, and the actors pack a satisfying amount of drama into the moments between action scenes.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 83 Keith Phipps
    It's a film with its own identity, the simple, thrilling story of a handsome god who falls to Earth and reminds everyone what heroes do.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Eason's twist of fate and too-sudden ending seems as rooted in Washington Heights as the music that pours from the neighborhood's car windows, the smoke that billows from its late-night eateries, and the stoic resignation inscribed on its inhabitants' faces.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    A combination of criminal smoothness and overloaded neuroses, Cage pulls off the lead role better than any actor imaginable.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Teeters on the brink of New Age ludicrousness, but it never goes over: Like Kieslowski and others, Shyamalan knows that what makes for lousy metaphysics can make for powerful metaphor, and in the end he creates a deeply, surprisingly affecting film out of a little bit of smoke and brimstone.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Bielinsky's debut is a fine con picture, but at its best, it achieves even more, presenting the profession as a lifestyle with almost existential ramifications.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    It isn’t a hopeful story, but it is a story of how committed people have fought and struggled to create the possibility for hope in the future.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Heavy is the kind of deliberately slow-paced character study that allows carefully realized performances to shine.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    When the credits roll and the mood breaks, Japanese Story finally reveals itself as more dewy-eyed than deep, but as long as the mood holds, it holds fast.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    As specific as the film is to Italy at the turn of the turbulent 1970s, it’s also a film about how power first corrupts, then makes mad those who possess it.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    An early shot of two turtles crawling through the classroom establishes the film's deliberate pace, and To Be And To Have benefits from the care.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Now an invaluable time capsule, the film has to transcend its own conceptual messiness.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Already as dark as London soot, the comedy hardly needed work to bring it in line with the Coen brothers' sensibility, but the remake moves to a beat of its own, one unexpectedly in sync with the gospel music dominating its soundtrack.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    With its sharp wit and its portrayal of how broken families sometimes fit back together, Lilo would make a fine summer double feature alongside "About A Boy," another film that stays funny while dancing around a tiny abyss.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    "I knew the children here had something to say," Goldberg says in voiceover early in the film. That statement may sound slightly maudlin, but the film that follows is anything but.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Jeong's movie is at its best when it forgets about everything but the interactions of its cast, whether they're together or communicating via one of Cat's cleverly orchestrated cell-phone scenes.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Herzog is still the only person who could have made Grizzly Man. His admiration for Treadwell has its limits, but he understands, better than most directors, what it means to follow dreams into the belly of the beast.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    It could all be done much more efficiently, but any other approach would lose Tsai's unique mix of stone-faced comedy and dewy-eyed lyricism.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    An oddly effective mixture of technical prowess, well-executed cliché, and unexpected political poignancy.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Turtles Can Fly creates a haunting reminder that collateral damage can't always be measured in casualty rates, and that it goes on long after the news cameras have left the scene.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Nicole Kidman -- continuing the string of remarkable performances that have followed "Eyes Wide Shut" -- finds plenty of fodder in the long-delayed Birthday Girl. A grimy thriller with a wicked streak of humor.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Delivers the goods, if the goods you're in the market for happen to be a clever romance concerning William Shakespeare that's unlikely to cause anyone to reassess their notions of Shakespeare, romance, or enjoyment.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Investing a lot of time on each corner of his three-sided character piece, director Ira Sachs (who co-wrote the film with Michael Rohatyn) has created a film as dramatically intense as it is opaque.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    It's impossible not to admire what, apart from "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon," may be the most ambitious action film since "The Matrix."
    • 62 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    In the end, the camper-lot prostitution serves as trapping for a weirdly touching coming-of-age film that leaves its heroine sadder but wiser.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    As a marriage of big-budget filmmaking and old-fashioned scare tactics, it easily ranks alongside last year's "The Others."
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Effective as a drama as it spirals Golbahari deeper into her nightmarish world, Osama is similarly powerful as a fictionalized account of the Taliban's obscene wish for a world where the stringent enforcement of religious laws took the place of instinctual human kindness.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    For a film that clearly required a small army to make, it often feels thrillingly off-the-cuff, which keeps with The Lego Movie’s themes of creativity and weirdness: Nobody’s following an instruction book with this one.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    For all the memorable dialogue and elegant camerawork (courtesy of Javier Aguirresarobe), it’s Blanchett’s movie, and her performance tells yet another story, that of a woman losing control.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    However complicated the historical issues at play, the poetic introspection that consumes The New World's characters could only take place in a Terrence Malick movie. But, here at least, history and lyrical drift go together surprisingly well.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    The satire is headline-fresh, the action scenes keep pace with summer blockbusters, and no one shoots an evisceration with as much skill.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Some of the points seem too easy, some of the revelations practically announce themselves in advance, and there's never any sense of excitement or suspense as to where the whole thing is heading. But it still works, most of the time.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Fontaine gives her film the tone of a psychological thriller, with the potential of violence always lurking beneath the surface.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    A truly scary horror film, something akin to a lost art these days.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    The Wings Of The Dove is thought-provoking in a full and lasting sense; it'll stay with you long after its dubious final scene.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Swimming Pool returns Ozon to the psychological complexities of "Under The Sand" and his early mini-feature "See The Sea," and he again proves himself a master of building shocking moments from a series of seemingly insignificant gestures and throwaway lines.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    May register most immediately as a snappy whirl of visual gags, double entendres, overheated romance, and comically oversized living quarters, but beneath the exuberance of this fond counterfeit is a heartbeat as powerful as that of any film anchored in the present.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Amy
    She was, the documentary argues, a complex artist, one of awe-inspiring talent and many frustrating contradictions, and one who deserved better than to become just another punchline on her way to the grave. Kapadia provides a heartbreaking reminder of what we lost when we lost her.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    While most literary adaptations look flat and pretty, the fine performances here set Emma apart.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Memorable, deeply affecting movie.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    It's funny, too, though marked by an uneasy humor that's usually difficult to achieve. Anderson handles it with expert ease: At this point in his career, he moves the camera like a skilled dance partner, investing the smallest gesture with significance.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    A deft, three-dimensional performance from Dern, playing an almost entirely unlikable character, aids incalculably in exposing what happens when political factions lose touch with the realities of the issues for which they claim to provide answers.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Where Noyce could easily have given Branagh a mustache and tilted the film toward old-fashioned melodrama, he leans on tactics that are less obvious and more effective.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    It only takes rat trainers and CGI artists to create swarms of vermin, but it takes a twisted kind of genius to treat them as equals.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Gunn, a B-movie enthusiast who got his start at Troma, has found a way to bring funkiness and humanity to a galaxy-spanning blockbuster, one filled with dogfights and floating fortresses, but also with heroes quick with a quip, fast on the draw, and more than a little beaten up by the universe.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Cop Land emerges as a first-rate morality play in the form of an effective, if occasionally unwieldy, crime drama.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    "Adolesence can kill you," Birot has said in an interview. In a film that leaves the "you" intentionally vague, moment after moment she shows how.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    As the film goes along, themes and even lines of dialogue resurface, and Jarmusch's comic sensibilities grow more assured.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Yet for all the heady ideas at play, Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes remains a visceral film, one of movement, action, unexpected developments, and disarming poignance.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Most importantly, the director, script, and cast (rounded out by Judi Dench and well-placed imports Donald Sutherland and Jena Malone) all recognize that Austen is about much more than pretty costumes and knowing looks.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Whedon’s handling of the personal material is what makes Age Of Ultron extraordinary. Remarkably for a film so overstuffed, no character gets neglected.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Neither Molina nor Lithgow are stranger to big performances, but here, they offer studies in restraint, underplaying dramatic moments in ways that make them all the more powerful.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    The film offers a rare and fascinating firsthand look at two sides of the modern immigrant experience.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Rossi (who is handicapped himself) gives the film a magnetic presence, playing the part as a mix of sweet-natured good intentions and frustrating limitations.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    For as long as director and co-writer Jacques Audiard focuses on the central relationship, his stylish film stays on steady footing.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    While Michôd never satisfactorily develops the central relationship, The Rover is still a showcase for two strong performances.
    • The Dissolve
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    What's more impressive, and in the end more important, is the high standard of storytelling that Pixar continues to meet by locating both humor and emotional depth in worlds created out of lines of code.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Out of that clever setup, Changing Lanes pulls both the promised taut suspense and a much deeper film: an ethics thriller.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    A funny, unexpectedly inspiring story of excess, poor choices, and unwavering high-mindedness, all tied to that quintessential bit of rock wisdom: Icarus did fall, but first he flew.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Hoffman (Soapdish, One Fine Day) leads a first-rate cast in an intelligent, fully realized adaptation of Shakespeare's most popular comedy that's at once highly cinematic and true to its source.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Mixing horror and humor is no mean feat, but Shaun Of The Dead tightens throats in fear without making the laughs stick there in the process.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Webber displays a great sense of understatement and a keen eye for careful framing, with cinematographer Eduardo Serra beautifully re-creating Vermeer's signature play of shadow and light.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Ali
    Ali becomes less the story of a boxer than the story of one man hanging onto his soul. With so many wrong ways to dramatize that process, Mann's approach seems all the more right.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    A funny, tightly plotted, well-conceived comedy that transcends both Crystal's '90s curse and its horrible title.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    When it's on its game, and it frequently is, South Park's portrayal of its foul-mouthed, pre-teen, construction-paper-like protagonists' navigation of the absurd adult world around them cuts as deeply as any other current comedy.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Director Zacharias Kunuk captures that feeling well, but he never quite develops it into a theme epic enough to fill Atanarjuat's scope. His film is by turns mesmerizing and trying, with enough of the former to make the latter worthwhile.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    It finds no clear answers, but that suits both the horrific event and this haunting, elusive film.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    In some respects a less tidy film than before, particularly when it veers off into a subplot involving a Nazi soldier played by Siegfried Rauch, the new cut mostly retains the original's virtues while adding details and episodes that make it more recognizably a Fuller film.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Directed with depth, efficiency, and wit by Bryan Singer, the film suffered only from a tendency to seem like a setup for an even bigger movie...Fortunately, bigger usually equals better here, and when it doesn't, it equals just as good.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Were he only trying to remark on that world's creepiness, Cronenberg would still succeed brilliantly, if coldly, but his sympathy makes the film.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Shooting in dreamy black and white, Stuhr finds quiet poetry in shots of his character wandering the countryside with his new friend, and deadpan comedy in scenes of the camel patiently watching his new owners eat dinner, his head filling a window frame as he waits for scraps.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Evans is a revelation here, delivering a haunted performance that his previous work has only suggested he had in him. He gives the film a solid center, allowing others in the cast to explore the extreme.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    MC5's mix of showmanship, hippie idealism, and brawling Detroit muscle makes it tough to categorize, and A True Testimonial carefully moves through each step of the progression.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Why it works is anyone's guess. It's fair to argue--and the film makes this argument itself, with no great subtlety--that Godzilla embodies Japan's nuclear anxieties in the aftermath of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    It's important for the film to establish the concentration camp as a hell on earth from the start, but Schlöndorff has more in mind than creating another reminder of the inhumanity of fascism.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    One the truest-feeling political portraits in years, as well as a fine piece of drama.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Using a single set for each act and cutting minimally, Jacquot seems to recognize his limited ability to make the opera cinematic.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Pawlikowski's off-balance compositions and affection for odd close-ups suggest the influence of Wong Kar-Wai, but the film's low-key observational spirit owes as much to Mike Leigh.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    While director Joe Mantello (who also helmed the stage production) often uses the opened-up space of the movie well, he doesn't always avoid some of the common pitfalls that come with adapting plays.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Filled with video-game in-jokes, Spy Kids 3 comes roaring to life in action scenes based on different gaming genres, each of which takes full advantage of the 3-D effects.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Mostly content to observe with wary admiration, the film doesn't offer any answers, and life robs the story of any sort of resolution, leaving only footage of one remarkable example of charity in action.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Gaghan brings in many more players, but edits the film into the lean, propulsive shape of a thriller. That ends up being something of a problem; some sub-plots never fully untangle and characters get lost as Gaghan rushes toward a conclusion that, taken on its own, is the stuff of a slightly hysterical leftie pamphlet.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    To concentrate on the minor faults of a fable as beautiful and unusual as Pleasantville would be missing the point.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    Zombie fills The Devil's Rejects with thrilling setpieces, pays homage to his inspirations without outright ripping them off (most of the time), brings back some cult-movie icons (hello, Mary Woronov and E.G. Daily), and works in some profanely clever dialogue.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Keith Phipps
    This sort of film lives or dies by its promise of bullet-dodging, stylishly clad women throwing themselves into impossible feats of daring, and when the time comes for action, Yuen displays a rare gift.

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