Lawrence Toppman
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For 1,417 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 56% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 41% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 4.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Lawrence Toppman's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Shutter Island
Lowest review score: 0 Little Nicky
Score distribution:
1,417 movie reviews
    • 23 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Isn't satisfying or surprising. It doesn't even make sense from scene to scene.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Ronan, however, transcends the script. She's innocent yet wise, gentle yet forceful. She's the one thing in this picture that shows how great a movie The Lovely Bones might have been, had the people who made it believed in the book with all their hearts.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The sequel to the 2008 hit “Twilight” makes no effort to satisfy outsiders. It's strictly for devotees who won't balk at plot absurdities, clunky dialogue and patchy characterizations.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    It's "Braveheart" without historical significance and "Passion" without spirituality, though it dabbles in both, and it represents as brazen an act of career suicide as I can recall from a star director. If he were a first-timer, he'd never work again.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Reviewers sometimes insult actors by saying they don't vary their expressions across an entire movie. But until Knowing, I never thought that could literally be true. Nicolas Cage does widen his eyes with about 15 minutes left in the film.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    It's yet another warm, fuzzy, New-Age tale that cozies us into believing the grave doesn't mean oblivion.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Far be it from me to spoil the secret, but I will say this: The last reel should've been sent straight to the city dump.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    There's a potentially good story rattling around somewhere inside this broken, self-contradictory and finally meaningless film.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Recycling is a good idea in principle, but certain products should be sent directly to a landfill without re-use. Be Cool, the feeble film follow-up to "Get Shorty," is one of them.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    It's a disconnected, implausible story that aims for a tone of magic realism and falls short on both counts.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Goes wrong in less than two minutes, which may be a world record for sequels to decent movies.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Unimaginative.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The special effects excite at first but wear out their welcome.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The story's so sloppy that it contradicts itself constantly.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    There's one thing to be said for The Perfect Man: It confirms my belief that I'll never need to see another Hilary Duff movie until (1) she turns 30 or (2) she plays a crackhead in "Requiem for a Dream II."
    • 65 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The year's least necessary and most unimaginative remake slogs half-heartedly to its pre-destined conclusion without making a ripple.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    There's nothing wrong with Simpson's performance that a head transplant wouldn't cure, and the grinning Reynolds looks Botoxed into immobility.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The film seems almost intentionally bad in most ways, as if Gilliam were expressing a suicide wish for his directing career.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The writers supply character traits that seem to point toward a pay-off but never reach one. People all end up as tight-lipped, indistinguishable automatons who plummet 50 feet down jagged rocks with scarcely a scratch.
    • 19 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Utterly generic.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The truly appalling thing, though, is the stupidity of the screenplay by Richard Kelly.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    We don't need a discussion of plot in a review of a movie made from a video game, do we? Nor do we care whether the characters are complicated (no), the acting is sophisticated (no), the direction is competent (no) or the camerawork is clever (no).
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Gosling's been better elsewhere but delivers an adequate performance. McGregor and Watts seem baffled most of the time, as well they might be. Forster keeps us from drifting off with inventive camerawork; in this case, that's like saying a hideous suit has well-stitched lapels.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    I expected Get Rich or Die Tryin' to be gritty, scary, maybe disturbing or thought-provoking. What I didn't realize was that it would be so dull that any other effect it could have made was wiped away.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Most painfully, the semi-alert Owen and the leaden Aniston go together like sausages and syrup.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The hot comic du jour wants to startle us but is merely startlingly dull.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    What comes from the mouth of Johnny Depp...not the crucial spark of wit or insight that could encourage us to spend two hours with this cruel bore.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Writer Guillermo Arriaga earns most of the blame. He played similar games with narrative in the vastly better "Amores Perros" and "21 Grams," jumping back and forth in time to show relationships among subplots and characters. But "Burials" barely has one plot.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The "Puppetoonish" characters in Hoodwinked didn't bother me: They're primitive and inexpressive, but their personalities come through. In fact, the problem is that their personalities do come through: They're all wackily sarcastic, unfunny nonentities.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    There's nothing more painful than watching comics tank, and Looking for Comedy in a Muslim World is a 95-minute wince.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Martin, who plays Clouseau and wrote the script with Len Blum, has completely mishandled the character.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    ATL
    Director Chris Robinson moves his camera aimlessly, cutting in and out of speeches as if he were just as bored as I.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Is Josh Hartnett attracted to cinematic bombs, or do movies merely self-destruct once he signs on as the leading man?
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The writer-producer-director of American Dreamz makes nearly every mistake in the satirical book. His targets are either too easy or too dated. He's inconsistent in his attitudes toward them. His stereotypes are stale.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    I once said I'd watch Chiwetel Ejiofor act in any piece of disposable fluff, and now I have.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    This isn't nitpicking. Every bit of the tale is as full of holes as a wool sweater at a moth convention, and Shyamalan telegraphs each potential surprise.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    If you really must see Miami Vice (and you mustn't), buy a ticket to something better, then slip into "Vice" at the 95-minute mark and watch the last third of the movie. No one involved will profit by your curiosity, and you won't miss a thing of importance.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    When Allen revives his plodding "Manhattan Murder Mystery" as the even duller Scoop, I snore.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    "Man" is like a sour, half-formed version of a TV sitcom full of dislikable, disconnected characters.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Yet even the language, finally, becomes as inauthentic as the accents.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Writer-director Barry Levinson leaned on Robin Williams the way a one-ring circus relies on its lone acrobat. So they're jointly responsible for the film's utter failure.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Writer-director Coppola and her production team have gotten the look of the late 18th century right...But they've gotten almost everything else wrong.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe attempt light romantic comedy in A Good Year, and the results are as grindingly discordant as a punk band writing a suite of waltzes.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Harsh Times contains exactly 30 seconds of novelty.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The only interesting character is the dragon, who grows from an adorably dependent baby to a protective, intelligent adult voiced by Rachel Weisz.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    This movie is made by and for people who don't care about good storytelling.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Errors in logic will delight the attentive.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Attaching Chris Rock to I Think I Love My Wife is like chaining a Kentucky Derby winner to the merry-go-round in a petting zoo. His humor is hobbled, his personality dulled, his energy depleted. Who's responsible for this lapse in judgment? Chris Rock.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The filmmakers' ineptitude is staggering.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The storytelling is inept and illogical.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    It's marginally possible that Nancy Drew is spoofing high school adventure movies, and I almost hope so. Otherwise, it's unwatchable on every level.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Quirkiness is as essential to a small indie film as beef stock to French onion soup. But if you don't have enough of any other ingredient, you end up with a watery, barely edible broth.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Plays like some uninformed seventh-grader's view of gay men.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    It's almost impossible for a movie to go irrevocably wrong during the opening credits, but the ceaselessly irritating The Jane Austen Book Club does just that.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    You'll have to swallow this gooey confection whole or spit it out after the first couple of bites.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The final sad joke is this: Weitz took a wonderful story about the danger of severing a soul from its otherwise empty body and did that very thing to his source.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Lee sleepwalks through his part, even in romantic scenes with equally bland Cameron Richardson.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The film is a saggy, oddly mean-spirited takeoff of "Walk the Line."
    • 64 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    No movie this year will better embody Macbeth's description of life itself: "a tale ... full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."
    • 29 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Of COURSE it's bad. It was always going to be. But it's worse than necessary.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Director Doug Liman and a trio of writers eventually forget the rules they set up and hurl combatants to places they could never have seen or even known about: Who'd willingly project himself into the middle of a Chechnyan war zone?
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Just Will Ferrell doing the same man-boy shtick he usually does.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The script by Kristofor Brown and Seth Rogen and the direction by Steven Brill have a careless, never-gave-a-damn feel that's as insulting to viewers as the film is dull.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Speed Racer is chaotic as a six-ring circus, gaudy as a transvestites convention and soullessly cute as a robot puppy.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    As a film, it's flabby and utterly predictable.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Sandler proves even a hardened Israeli secret service agent can be an imbecilic juvenile.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    It's neither dull nor stimulating, neither off-putting nor engaging.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    We waited 10 years for a sequel to the movie version of "The X-Files" – and the best Chris Carter could do is The X-Files: I Want to Believe?
    • 58 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Solace is especially frustrating when it moves down interesting paths, then stops.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Allen's laziness is startling, even in so mechanical a filmmaker. He uses a monotonous narrator to tell us what the characters think and do, though he then shows them performing the actions that have just been described.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    OK, so no plot, really.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The best way to sit through Max Payne is by using minimal brain.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    A feel-nothing movie – a series of disconnected, implausible incidents that end as arbitrarily as they began, in an effort to inspire emotions the picture never justifies.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    A brazen title card declares this " true story." (Wow, not even "based on.") However many facts may be accurate, the movie feels contrived, with climax piled upon climax.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    As a vegetarian, I'm grateful that Around the Bend -- an extended commercial for KFC passing itself off as a heartwarming family drama -- is a loser.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The outtakes prove Analyze That could have been even worse.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    I also wondered how the movie got the title Cradle 2 the Grave. Nobody used the phrase; it didn't apply to any characters; it didn't even turn up in a song. Maybe the filmmakers were saving "Rotten 2 the Core" for the sequel.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Visually compelling, relentlessly loud and so shallow you need just a fragment of your brain to follow it.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Though the writing doesn't work, you have to give Burns credit for shrewd direction. He gets the best performances I've seen from Graham and Murphy.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Puts more miles on plot that was worn out long ago.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    If you get past the preposterous hypothesis at the start of Return to Me, you'll find a passably pleasant, utterly bland romantic comedy without a surprise to its 110 minutes.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    A long, slow pity party full of characters who constantly bemoan their fate while telling other people not to pity themselves.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    You can get all of this free on television any week, so why pay for it?
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    A punch-drunk lightweight. Inside the ring, it lands some forceful punches. Outside the ring, it stumbles around, swinging wildly at nothing, until it collapses.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    How bad, really, could it be? I couldn't have guessed.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    What starts as a cute premise crashes faster than a skateboard with an oak branch shoved between its wheels.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Excruciatingly flat comedy.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    A frantic, heartless hodgepodge of pieces from James Bond movies, Indiana Jones adventures, "Star Wars" and half a dozen legends.
    • 15 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    The assault is against our ears, as the soundtrack pours forth a stream of thrash and Goth music.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    A mind-numbing carnival of violence.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    You could dismiss it, as I do, as an impenetrable and insufferable ball of pseudo-philosophic twaddle.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Wilson brings low-wattage amiability to his part, as always. Hudson's mismatched with him but tries to set him afire.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Dark Blue proves again what a remarkable actor Denzel Washington is. Too bad he's not in it.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    He (Murphy) can't make chicken a la king from the chicken manure supplied by the writers.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Melvin Van Peebles wrote and directed the biting "Don't Play Us Cheap" 30 years ago to complain about racial stereotyping in films. But Hollywood never listened. It kept playing African -Americans cheap in mainstream comedies, whether the directors were white or black. Deliver Us From Eva -- is one of the worst recent offenders.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Feeble, vapid picture.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    See not only the original "Detective" but the Steve Martin-Bernadette Peters film "Pennies From Heaven." If you insist on giving Downey and company $8 instead, you'll be getting wooden nickels from Hell.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    If you're the kind of person who goes to the movies primarily to watch faces melt to pulp, you won't be disappointed.
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 65 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Movies can certainly be worse than bad sitcoms, and this is one of them.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Lawrence Toppman
    Williamson deals mostly in cliches, as if high schoolers weren't smart enough to appreciate anything subtler.