For 1,052 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 2.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Keith Phipps' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 57
Lowest review score: 0 A Life Less Ordinary
Score distribution:
1,052 movie reviews
    • 90 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    It’s both unfailingly exciting and overly familiar, a restless but risk-averse film that’s a little too content to borrow from what’s worked before.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Though Wan is stepping away from horror, at least for now, to direct the next The Fast And The Furious sequel, the latest Insidious entry suggests he’s a long way from running out of new tricks, or at least finding infinite variations on old ones.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    The film is a bit of a slog, but in the end, it's a slog worth taking, thanks to a strange, moving ending that reduces the samurai era's codes of warfare, class, and honor down to two men meeting face to face.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Handsomely shot by Brazilian director Walter Salles and beautifully played by the two leads, The Motorcycle Diaries would amount to little more than a minor, softly politically conscious coming-of-age story, if not for its historical context.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Years from now, Team America will better convey the political character of 2004 than a stack of Time magazines. Staying funny helps even more.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Though Smith loses many of his past efforts' familiar trappings--Jay and Silent Bob are now confined to the production-company logo--Jersey Girl plays to Smith's strengths like no film since "Clerks."
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    With The Conjuring, [Wan] once more turns the familiar terrifying, making it easy to fear what’s behind that closed door, or under the bed, or just around the corner, making a creaking noise that doesn’t sound quite right.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    That makes it hard to watch "Billy Elliot" director Stephen Daldry's adaptation without thinking of the one Almodóvar might have made -- which surely would have been warmer, less self-consciously tony, and less relentlessly arid than the one that did get made.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Teghil is a winning lead.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Unlike in similar past efforts, Sayles never finds a way to bring it all together. Individual moments of considerable impact alternate with stretches that go nowhere.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    In McKay, Ferrell has found an unusually simpatico collaborator for the type of humor that's made him a comedy force: outsized, unexpectedly sweet, and unrelenting.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Dinosaur 13 is haunted by the nagging sense that only one side of the story is getting told.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Keith Phipps
    Freeway is full of nice touches—such as making the villain a psychologist— that play off the expectations of a familiar story. While also working as a conventional thriller, its many twists on the fairy tale make it work on an almost subliminal level.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Too much of Leatherheads feels like studied motions, and its charms never plaster over a story that takes forever to get going, and doesn't go too far once it does.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Hot Rod keeps a sweet tone that's filled with affection for its characters, and enough laughs to become this summer's most mildly recommendable comedy.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    It's a tender, but sometimes untended, portrait of the artist as a young man-and occasionally as a young asshole-that's handsome, dutiful, and finally, a little dull.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    It's more haunting than it has any right to be, thanks to its love of long, lonesome highways and the way the violence of the past bleeds into the present.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Henson's characters maintained an essential innocence while sending up the very idea of entertainment. They put on a show with quotation marks around it, but the irony never felt cynical. When it isn't getting bogged down in unearned sentiment, The Muppets gets that right.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Anyone looking for handsomely presented, kid-friendly thrills need look no further.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    An unassuming wisp of a movie, Midnight In Paris finds Woody Allen penning a love letter to the City Of Lights, albeit one whose sentiments could easily fit on a postcard.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Ramona And Beezus has the undeniably nice, pleasantly uninspired feel of film designed to kill time with the kids on a rainy weekend.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    How could someone so frail and terrified at the mere thought of acting in front of the camera become the biggest movie star in the world? And how could someone so unknowable become so familiar? Then the film makes the mistake of trying to answer these questions.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Spielrein's name is less familiar than the others, but the film suggests she deserves to be more than a footnote in the history of psychoanalysis.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    There are formulaic moments aplenty in Pride, the "inspired by a true story" tale of Philadelphia swimming coach Jim Ellis, but in its first scenes, at least, it deserves some credit for doing the unexpected.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    If only the emotions of the performances, the themes of the story, and Wright's cinematic virtuosity synced up more often. A lopsided abridgement that speeds through the plot doesn't help.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    A better film would have matched Arnett's seemingly effortless intensity throughout. This okay film does merely okay by it.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Wanted is a queasily unapologetic power fantasy about becoming a better person through violence.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Mostly The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel stays focused on the cutesy, low-stakes personal journeys of its English characters, characters it would be hard to care about if they weren't brought to life by actors who give the film substance and gravity it doesn't otherwise know how to earn.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Which makes it all the more frustrating that the film doesn't quite work, and that it drags from episode to episode--some are brilliant, most merely intriguing--with little momentum.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Offers a concise summary of Burroughs' life and works. Maybe too concise. At a mere 88 minutes, it feels a bit glancing. But as an introduction or refresher course, it gets the job done.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    its moments of greatness--and there are more than a couple--feel weirdly disconnected, stuck in a movie that doesn’t know how to put them together, or find a good way to move from one to the next.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Adams' winning performance and the light touch director Kevin Lima (a veteran of animation and live action) brings to scenes not tasked with advancing the plot all suggest that, silly as they may look once you take it apart, irony-free, romantic fantasy--animated and otherwise--still has a place on the big screen.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    It's as subtle as a spinning kick, but some films aren't built for subtlety.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    The best thing about Taymor's Tempest is also the worst: It's not stunning but it is sturdy, a handsome-enough showcase of a film that never really comes to life. It plays like a challenge politely declined.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    No Strings Attached isn't a BAD piece of formulaic product.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    It's a postcard-lovely movie that, in spite of its best intentions, ends up feeling a little touristy.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    The Hulk himself looks more steroidal than superheroic, as if the expressive beast from the first film had been replaced by a WWE star.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Without "The Wire" and its like as a point of comparison, Texas Killing Fields might seem the natural heir to a gritty '70s cop drama. But with great contemporary TV around, it seems strangely incomplete.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Johnson sets viewers up for greatness, but ultimately offers much milder pleasures. The film isn’t an outright con, but it’s easy to feel a little misled by the end.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    It's the journey that matters, however, and sometimes the film doesn't seem to know where it's going.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    One of the film's oddest aspects is the way the 2002 footage appears more dated than the scenes from 1978.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    The plot is only semi-comprehensible, but the nearly non-stop musical numbers-brilliant conflations of glam-rock and showtunes-and transgressive sexual energy keep things moving.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    The film is at its best when it isn't afraid to be earnest.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    The film is much more intriguing in its dread-inducing opening half, when Moll's assured direction keeps suggesting that something horrible will be happening soon, then, when it does, that something even more horrifying may follow.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    It's a heartbreaking tale, a sliver of a tragic history still unfolding, but one that Braun largely leaves others to document.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Though the film never balances the grown-up stuff with the gross-out gags, it suggests the Farrellys might be able to do mature after all.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    After a compelling opening act and some shocking late-film developments, the film feels disengaged from the action at hand and the issues raised.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    The way-too-familiar climax feels less like a comment on destiny than like watching a finely crafted but soulless product roll off an assembly line.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    The film lays on its politics-as-chess-game metaphor a little thick, however, and its refusal to leave the corridors of power to see the impact of its developments on the country at large makes it feel stuffy after a while.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    Made with affection and access but not enough structure.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    It's an imperfect film, but it's the kind of imperfect film of which it would be nice to have seen Shelly make more.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 67 Keith Phipps
    You have to give She's All That points for unironically staying true to its genre in its purest form, one Kevin Williamson-like bit of dialogue aside.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Mackenzie's film could almost use one or two lurid touches in place of its stately distance. Then again, a more stylized approach might have allowed less room for Richardson, whose unsparing performance makes other elements almost irrelevant.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Roberts' script and direction show sparks of wit, but the plot comes lifted from countless heist films.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    The lovable characters remain, but they never do much of interest in a sequel that's safely above average but superfluous.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Machine makes its look-to-the-future-not-the-past message as clear as a Grammy acceptance speech, but as an exploration of regret and the elusive quality of time, it falls well short of "Memento," another film starring a sad-eyed Pearce.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Though he never quite rescues the film, Bardem continually suggests the tensions bubbling under the surface that Dancer itself never penetrates.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Brett Ratner remains a director of no great distinction, but here, he proves himself an adept orchestrator of battle scenes, clearly presenting the forces on both sides, and using clear, coherent editing and dynamic compositions.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    A slow, meditative movie-an appropriate choice given the subject matter-that ultimately fails, in spite of clearly heartfelt good intentions, because of its almost inhuman detachment.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Love Liza needs more than mood on its side. A moment of recognizable human behavior would have been a fine place to start.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Though it's tough to find much fault with a film so sweet, Piglet's Big Movie never lives up to its title.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    The film refreshingly portrays its kids as part of a diverse group trying to succeed in a country in which they can never find secure footing. That’s the big-picture story here, and one even the occasional underdog cliché can’t obscure.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Like its immediate predecessor, Muppets Most Wanted has one tremendous advantage, even when it missteps: Muppets.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    By the film's halfway point, the subplots have all started to head in the most obvious directions imaginable, which is too bad, since they all have real potential. Ferrera's story of spending the summer as an out-of-place ethnic element in the milk-white suburbs stays interesting the longest, in large part thanks to her performance.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    For much of The Patience Stone, Farahani is the movie, and as she shifts from fear to despair to anger to emotions she’d never previously considered, her magnetic presence goes a long way toward putting a human face on the film, more successfully than the material around her.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Panayotopoulou's background in photography shows in the way she lets her chiaroscuro lighting mirror her characters' emotions. It also shows in the still-life quality that Hard Goodbyes never quite gets beyond.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    For those who like Carrey and are waiting for a film they can honestly say they enjoyed through and through, this ain't it.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Tying The Knot's central point remains insistently stated. It would be hard for anyone to watch it and still think of the demand for same-sex marriage as a mere passing fancy.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    It's a stylish, cleverly plotted, perpetually unpredictable film with another electric (albeit brief) performance from Penn. So why is it so unaffecting?
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Wong’s usual concerns overwhelm the film, and though his pairing of fisticuffs and longing is sometimes awkward, he surrounds the awkwardness with some of the most beautiful images in his career. In Wong’s world, beauty goes a long way.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    When the suspense setpieces do come, many of them are staged with considerably less imagination—with cheap jolts underscored by an intrusive score—than would be expected from director Wes Craven.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Occasionally, the film invites a more dynamic touch than the careful slowness Cholodenko carries over from "High Art." But that same care gives the movie a seductive quality that would have been lost in a more hurried approach.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    It's passably gripping and occasionally lively.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    In the end, Chaos is as compelling as it is confounding, and it's compelling in large part because of the confusion it stirs.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    It's clumsy, but also strangely refreshing. To children raised on "Spy Kids" and "SpongeBob SquarePants," it may look as primitive as a daguerreotype, but never underestimate the persuasive powers of a cute animal.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    As Ouimet, the always-terrific Shia LeBeouf is an oasis of depth in a film that otherwise can't pass up a sports-film cliché.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Only a truly great director can make a film of high artistic merit, filled with personality and memorable scenes, that's still a borderline disaster. (Think One From The Heart or 1941.) So the heartfelt and woefully miscalculated Elizabethtown may be the film that marks Cameron Crowe's arrival as a truly great director.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Unfortunately, Russell paces the film as if trying to demonstrate what eternity feels like. When the plot begs to move forward, the film keeps lingering over friendly fawns and long walks through the forest.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Short and shapeless but nonetheless welcome documentary.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    While not dwelling on plot eventually gets P.S. in trouble during the slack finale, it gives Linney and Grace plenty of room to maneuver.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Pretty painless by kiddie movie standards.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    If nothing else, the sweep of Workman’s cradle-to-grave approach helps place Kane in a broader context, making it one chapter in a long life and a drama-packed career. The only trouble with the film is that Welles’ story has been told many times over, and Workman struggles to find anything new to say.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Big Eyes contains comedy and tragedy, too, but they pair much less agreeably here, in part because each of the film’s two protagonists belongs much more to one world than the other.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    But while Only The Strong Survive is essential viewing for soul fans, as a documentary it never makes the needed connections among the artists, their music, and the lives they lead.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Despite the sharp dialogue...and carefully managed dramatic rhythms, Match still can’t help but seem a bit cramped, particularly once the plot starts to take some predictable turns and the shouting starts. It’s a fine line that divides the intimate from the claustrophobic.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    When the general pleasantness of the atmosphere and the cleverness of the screenplay don't carry the movie, Wilson does -- at least until a hurried, confounding finale that reveals its casualness as sloppiness.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Eventually Stein's habit of dodging its own issues grows frustrating.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Director Chris Terrio adapts Amy Fox's play with flashes of wit, moments of insight, and some fine performances. But Heights' characters move along such preordained paths and perform such familiar movie actions that they might as well sport antennae.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Content to let his work speak for itself, Giger has little to add to the conversation, and while it’s intriguing to see him working in—or sometimes just ambling through—a house filled with his work and sources of inspiration, Sallin too often lets these scenes crowd out the story she’s trying to tell.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    For everything here that’s new and exciting, there’s much that’s way too familiar. The kids are so one-dimensional and unpleasant, it’s hard to care once they start dying off.... Unfriended is often more innovative than scary, too, with some memorable but not particularly chilling and hilariously foreshadowed death scenes.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    A solid, interesting B-movie, in another season it would seem a good deal fresher.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Young costars carry the film, creating real characters from a generally flat script and Peter Care's largely undistinguished direction, both of which conspire to keep Altar Boys' danger at a distance.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Though he (Jordan) directs with admirable skill, his usual touches don't drive the film--which occasionally threatens to lose its shape.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    The fun wears thin once it becomes clear that the only trick the film has to offer is footage of the women fighting and bonding over their shared love of the handsome but uncharismatic Verástegui.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    When it unexpectedly shifts back into its initial thriller mode, Walk On Water loses in human drama what it gains in tidiness, revealing itself as a film that carries more weight in its light scenes than its heavy moments can sustain.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Stallone and Schwarzenegger have all the gravity here, and keep pulling Escape Plan in the direction of an old-fashioned tough-guy action film, one filled with nods to their onscreen pasts and offscreen exploits.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Caine played Alfie as an incorrigible S.O.B. who at least made for good company. Law makes him a delicate boy with self-control problems who can't stop talking, and his charm runs out long before the film ends.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Keith Phipps
    Achieves a dullness that defies its pedigree and its story's potential.

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