Lawrence Toppman
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For 1,420 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 The Secret in Their Eyes
Lowest review score: 0 Little Nicky
Score distribution:
1,420 movie reviews
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    This coming-of-age portion is the less interesting half, though it has the more interesting Michael. We have seen Fiennes play an emotionally detached introvert so often that he brings nothing new to the role, apt though he is.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Blessedly, the kernel of the writing remains undisturbed, and its arguments are still powerful.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Button has a wide-eyed innocence that almost never palls. It strays far from the mind of F. Scott Fitzgerald, but often enough it came near to my heart.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Gripping but gap-filled Seven Pounds will have half your brain asking "How could this be?" and the other half saying, "Shut up and go along for the ride!" Listen to the latter voice.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The director is a cinematic equivalent of his subject, but a man who was able to reach middle age and examine that culture's good and bad points with a clear, detached mind.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie feels operatic at times. Tempestuous arias play on the soundtrack, and Puccini figures directly.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie may best be appreciated by people who know the references. All five monsters come from low-budget science fiction films of the 1950s.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Mottola also wrote the screenplay, which is most fresh and honest when dealing with supporting characters.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The Soloist does have the courage to be true to the real Ayers' fate at last, after the exaggerations end. And the smart, hard-working Foxx and Downey ensure that their scenes all stay grittily honest.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Ang Lee adds to the mythology with the sweet, gentle Taking Woodstock.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Daybreakers is more serious, from its A-list cast to its political commentary, with blood as a metaphor for oil. Like the best genre films, it has something on its mind.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    It’s the first Pixar effort that feels less like a creative outpouring and more like an obligation met to satisfy a distribution schedule.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie should come with the tag line “Don't try this at home,” because the method has near-fatal pitfalls. Yet the characters' clumsy emotional growth shows us there's hope even for a stumbling father and two sons groping toward peace.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The writing is haphazard at times, though the situations are funny enough in themselves to sustain our interest.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie seemed a disappointment at first, until I decided I was missing the point: It’s actually a drama about the way people treat a celebrity – with fear or reverence, as a source of income or reflected glory– and the way their own personalities change around him, while his stays the same. In that way, the film’s a small triumph.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    “Blood” may carry us into the past, but the unhappy effects linger today, like pollution darkening a sky that never turned completely blue.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Here’s a paradox: The millions of people who have read Stieg Larsson’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo are the panting target audience for the Swedish-language film adaptation. Yet they’re also likeliest to be disappointed by this carefully crafted drama, while people who haven’t read the book are likely to enjoy the movie and wonder what the literary fuss is about.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    On the scale of summer action films, this is to the “Transformers” sequel what an Andy Warhol print is to a first-grader’s refrigerator painting.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    I spent The Kids are All Right wondering whether director Lisa Cholodenko was affectionate toward her self-absorbed characters or gently mocking them. In the end, I thought she was both and liked the film more.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Its main pleasure lies in watching Bush thaw under gentle emotional heat applied by the few people who haven't given up on him.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Because the tale is straightforward and conventional, it needed and got terrific acting.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    RED
    One of those rare action comedies that actually delivers action and comedy.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The acting is so exact and the timing so crisp that it delivers precisely the satisfaction you'd anticipate.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Like all his (Aronofsky) films, it's lurid, visually stimulating, thoughtful, absurd in spots, well-cast and unrelentingly intense.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Mitchell keeps the direction simple and well-behaved, usually just pointing the camera at the speaker, but you can see why this topic appealed to him.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    An honest, basic story set forth with brevity, skill, care and intelligence.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Fans of their grossest stuff needn't fear: The Farrellys are still the guys who put the last three letters in "crass," and their potty humor was too extreme for me once or twice.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Sitting through Source Code is like watching a chef coax a beautiful soufflé into perfect shape for 80 minutes, then drop a bowling ball on it.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Hanna's a memorable creation, a girl who carries danger with her like a plague.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    His (Branagh) Thor has more complex characters than the usual "Transformers"-style melee; though that may not be what the readers of Marvel comics now want, it satisfied me most of the time.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Super 8 takes its place among the best B-grade science fiction movies of this generation by copying the best of the past 50 years.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The story might have worked as well without that stick-in-the-craw coincidence, which was inserted to maximize the horrors of Nawal's past.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The two actors are at their best when Emma and Dexter get emotionally naked. It's mildly enjoyable to listen to the self-deprecating banter people use to conceal anxieties, but we connect to them most deeply when they bare their souls.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The deliberate editing and quirky cinematography (both done by Cahill) sometimes seem at odds with each other but never get in the way of the story's honesty.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Madden has the wisdom to give most of the heavy emotional lifting to Mirren, who continues to shine at the age of 66.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Though the movie short-changes us emotionally, it delivers a credible, disheartening picture of greed and panic.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Nobody puts the "angst" in "gangster" like a European director. When the director's a Dane, you can count on gloomy, chilly visuals and deliberate pacing. And when the director is Nicolas Winding Refn, who made the "Pusher" series in his native country and "Bronson" in England, you can expect intense, often brutal spurts of violence.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The filmmakers do everything they can to balance levity and leavening. The subject says "drama," and the three supporting women deliver well-shaded, understated performances. (Howard shows us how weakness can be just as destructive as malice.)
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Ides can't be said to enlighten any but the naive, and it's not likely to shock us into positive political action So what pleasure can we get from this movie? Quite a bit, as it happens.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The Fords give us old-fashioned predators: Zombies shuffle slowly, silently, patiently forward, as implacably destructive as Time itself. Meanwhile, the Fords play off our memories from books, TV news and other movies.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Anonymous is fun – if you take the anti-Shakespearean tale as events set in an unreal, alternate universe.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    It's funny, in a can't-look-away-from-the-train-wreck way, and it's brutally honest. But it's not pretty.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    For certain movies, the adjectives "formulaic" and "predictable" are complimentary. War Horse is one of them.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Did anybody expect it to be a metaphor for modern America?
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie has entertaining cameos, too, especially one by Holly Robinson Peete. At 23, she played Officer Judy Hoffs on the TV show. At 48, she plays … Officer Judy Hoffs, the oldest undercover cop on Jump Street. Absurd? Of course. But pretty funny, too.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Every decade or so, someone proves animation can tell a serious adult story.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Whedon has made a superb template of an action film.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Director Christopher Nolan, who wrote the script with brother Jonathan, gets so many of the big things right that I wished they had taken more time with the little ones.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    For much of the film, Jérémie comes off as sullen, then unsettled, then just creepy. Yet at the end, as he struggles to start over, he engages our pity.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Satrapi and Parronnaud give us clues but no solution. The fun, for those of us who like fairy tales, is in guessing.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie doesn't need to preach a "we're all equal" message. When we watch the boys bond with their new kin over food or music, then see the lines of Palestinians plodding through armed checkpoints to reach jobs or visit Israeli friends, we get the point.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    I think Foy simply wants to deliver well-gauged terror and make a few points about personal responsibility and the need to overcome our fears. That he does quite well.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Mirren simply is, and she takes Hitchcock up a notch with every look and line.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Jackson imposes a sense of grandeur but mostly loses Tolkien's sense of fun.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Van Sant moves easily from dreamy, impressionistic narratives to conventional, less stylized storytelling, and he does the latter job well in Promised Land.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Muschietti does an excellent job of revealing just enough about Mama as we go along (and just enough of Mama herself) to show he's in control of this genre.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    LUV
    The big names in the cast add atmosphere in small doses, especially when Haysbert and Glover combine.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Hoffman and Harwood aren't afraid to show us old people who are rude, demanding, unreasonable and foolish, though the final overall mood remains blissful. Hoffman might have more to say as a director, if anyone in Hollywood cares to find out.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    What Levine does have is a gently gruesome way of amusing us, converting the uneasiness of a wooer from another species into the everyday anxieties of a young man around a girl he likes.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The balance between human interaction and mechanical mayhem works well until the end, when flying suits and exploding bodies fill the screen.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Is it too much to ask that he take a risk next time and kill somebody off, however much we’re used to having them in the “Trek” universe?
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    These veterans realize they’re all playing cogs in the director’s plot-twisting machine.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    David Goyer, who wrote the script for Man of Steel from a story he concocted with Christopher Nolan, found a new way to make us care: The title character is disturbed by everything in his adopted home.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    I think the trilogy has come to its natural conclusion: However you interpret the ending, we’ve spent enough time with these two people.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Only in the last half-hour do the usual Emmerich absurdities pile up: I laughed outright at the character who, past 65 and diagnosed with a massive brain tumor that will kill him within months, cannot be stopped by a ferocious beating, being stabbed in the neck with a sharp implement, then being crushed against a wall by an SUV moving at a minimum of 30 mph.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Sometimes you have to praise a movie backwards. In a season of clamorous action pictures, dopey comedies and grisly horrors, The Way Way Back is notable for what it doesn’t do. It doesn’t yank on your heartstrings, though you’ll be touched gently at last.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The director mixes the colors of his palette carefully. He uses (but never overuses) slow-motion, aerial shots, extreme close-ups and quick cuts, avoiding any self-consciously “stylish” display. He varies the pace of scenes and the angle of shots enough to keep the movie flowing, but we never feel we’re watching someone show us how clever he is.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Roger Deakins, probably the best living cinematographer never to win an Oscar (he’s 0-for-10), was behind the camera. So the picture never lets us down visually, even when the story occasionally strays.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The presence of Robert Redford gives the character weight, if not depth, because we bring to the film everything we know about the actor from other movies. Redford’s characters have seemed unflappable for more than 40 years: sometimes cool, sometimes cocky, but almost always master of a situation. To see him beginning to flounder is to see a new Redford, one who catches us off guard.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    At the center of the film lies a moral question, not a literary one: Should Ginsberg abandon the potentially visionary Carr when he turns out to be a liar, an exploiter and an emotional traitor? Should he, in fact, “kill his darling” when Carr commits a heinous act and asks Ginsberg to lie for him?
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    That dragon represents the best and worst things about the film. He’s terrifying yet slightly droll.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    This isn’t a history lesson. It’s pure entertainment, an excuse for good actors to romp through a twisting, well-told tale.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Formulaic, yes. Settled with as many reconciliations and promises of happiness as “A Christmas Carol,” absolutely. But a familiar pleasure, nonetheless.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Fiennes isn’t naturally an outgoing performer, and he’s playing the most extroverted author in English history. So he does his best work in intimate moments, when Dickens finds himself at a loss for words.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    If you’re worried that the re-teaming of Clooney and Cate Blanchett in a World War II movie signals something like “The Good German,” fear not: She’s better here, playing a French art historian who worries the Americans will “rescue” the art in order to steal it for their own country.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Pavich gives the Chilean-born Jodorowski his full say in the documentary, partly in Spanish and partly in expressive if slightly fractured English.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Fading Gigolo, a movie as slight and tender as its leading character, leaves you feeling you’ve just seen one of the few Woody Allen movies Allen didn’t write or direct.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Guy Pearce isn’t as physically formidable as Clint Eastwood or Charles Bronson in Leone’s classics, but he’s just as determined and dangerous.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    As in “Restrepo,” we never have the sense that Junger makes judgments. Near the end, soldiers in their 20s say their bonds with other servicemen run immeasurably deep, and they never expect to have relationships this meaningful with anyone else again.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The film’s fast, amusing, good-looking and not overlong, which is all sensible non-geeks ask of such movies.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    The story has overtones of “On the Waterfront.”
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Lawrence Toppman
    Denzel Washington doesn’t demonstrate how great he is with first-rate scripts such as “Flight.” He does it by elevating sophisticated pulp like The Equalizer to a higher level.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie fails the credibility test right here. As those of us who were social rejects in high school know, the two qualities that would defeat any prom candidate are extra weight and a blotchy complexion. Laney has porcelain skin and a sveltely curvaceous figure, so she's a candidate for prom royalty. [29 Jan 1999, p.6E]
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 55 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    Writer-director Pedro Almodóvar crammed actors he’s worked with over the years into a movie so wacky it defies analysis.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    What made “District 9” special was attention to details: You believed in the characters, their society and their surroundings. The big effects in Elysium work fine. But the people never become individuals, and the vagueness and coincidental nature of the storytelling undermine its structure.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    Just as I was starting to think of it as a “motiveless psychos terrorize rich family” movie (a la “The Purge”), it gave me good reasons to watch.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    Gomez is a nonstarter as an actor, alternating dully between petulance and indifference. Hawke compensates with a vivid, ferocious performance that doesn’t go over the top.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    Lawrence gives the same committed, heart-rending performance, and she’s even more saintly than before: The script never lets her fire an arrow except in self-defense, and she stubbornly defies Snow in public, though she knows the probable consequence is death. Hutcherson has more personality this time, yet Peeta doesn’t deepen as a character.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    Director John Lee Hancock and screenwriters Kelly Marcel and Sue Smith spend about a third of the film exploring Travers’ childhood in Australia, and there the film succeeds.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    He decided early on what he wanted and pursued it straightforwardly all his life. That rarely yields riveting drama, however well-intentioned filmmakers may be.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    A pleasant, snappy, by-the-numbers buddy comedy.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    A melodrama that reaches the heart but hardly ever convinces the head.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    It’s just a popcorn movie – but it’s loud, smashing fun, if you accept it as a high-tech piece of silliness.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    If you wanted to, you could see this movie as an allegory about people who love each other but can never connect. Or maybe it’s a warning to parents who turn a blind eye to children’s failings until the family self-destructs.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    Well, this is the best adaptation of Block – in fact, the only decent one.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    Fear not. It’s as silly as the first, a shade faster and nastier (though also sloppier) and features a new psycho more dangerous than anyone in the original.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 67 Lawrence Toppman
    The Hobbit concludes as it began: in a welter of continuous action, with characters who have become archetypes but seldom rise above that level, and with a host of ideas J.R.R. Tolkien didn't put into his short novel.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Fair, overlong James Bond from the second shelf.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Some scenes achieve dramatic greatness and emotions that reach to the heart's core. Almost as many have the tinny ring of a badly counterfeited coin.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    An unassuming, brief and cheaply entertaining boxing movie. It's long on punching and short on character, but you wouldn't go to a Hill movie to see "Raging Bull."
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Most of the actors keep an icicle-stiff upper lip except for Winslet, who darts around like a finch with a beak full of sunflower seeds, and Burrows, who exudes a musk of refined sexiness.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    If you like films short, sweet and soothing, this may be exactly your "Dish."
    • 82 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    He (writer/director David Gordon Green) fired his arrow straight at a worthwhile target, but it fell a little short.
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Writer-director Lisa Krueger bends over backward to make everyone happy.
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie runs out of steam before its finish, but she (Kidman) doesn't.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    95 breezy minutes that typify cotton-candy filmmaking.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The details of the story, crucial in a picture that's at least partly a mystery, remain a tangled blur.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Far too clever for its own good.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Blethyn glides through the proceedings elegantly, a comic swan among ducks.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Easy to like.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Amiable bundle of broad, easy laughs rather than bitingly fierce satire.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It flies apart when it clumsily introduces humor at a funeral or an application for death benefits.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Foster and Yun-Fat each show about three-quarters of their characters.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Your reaction will depend on your response to the title character, who's meant to be God or one of God's messengers.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Without Gibson, this soufflé would fall pancake-flat.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Goes down easily enough.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It is a gimmick, rather than an idea worth exploring.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    May wrestle with big ideas, but it does so through a succession of small emotional moments.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    What makes Blade 2 marginally better than "Blade," especially if you thought the first was a hollow spectacle? It has a plot.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    A sometimes clever, sometimes clumsy movie.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    By the end, I felt like a beetle going round and round in a toilet bowl that just wouldn't stop flushing.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It delivers cop-genre thrills at the pace required and reminds us Omar Epps is a star in the making.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Won't startle or surprise you but will satisfy your need to see good actors at work.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The setup doesn't make sense from the get-go.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Whatever he (Shyamalan) did, he shouldn't have tried to send the same lightning bolt down to Earth in the same place.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Who else in Hollywood would've met a non-actor with spina bifida (Rene Kirby), created a role for him, then shot him dancing and skiing on his hands to show how easily he fit into society?
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The part that caters to older fans is funny and satisfying, if unbelievable. The part that plays to action-movie devotees is muddled, unsatisfying and unbelievable. Luckily, the first part is about two-thirds of the movie.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The vigorous, unsubtle acting provides consistent pleasure, once you stop expecting it to seem realistic.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's cheerful nonsense from blithe beginning to obvious end.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's gently funny, modestly scary in spots, full of valuable but low-key observations about life.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The sense of loneliness and disaffection makes its effect. Guédiguian offers no answers, and the hope he supplies is almost surreal.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The pleasure comes from watching the clever rodents do their stuff. Computerized images have been kept to a minimum, and real animals provide most of the film's atmosphere.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Starts as a tart little lemon drop of a movie and ends up as a bitter pill. I'm glad to have seen it, for I appreciated Campbell Scott's dominant performance and Jesse Eisenberg's breakthrough. But I hope writer-director Dylan Kidd mixes less acid into the next drink he pours.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The film delivers the goods, reptile-wise. Though the computer-generated villains look a bit clumsy at ground level, they're superb in the air.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    A holiday fable that's not destined for immortality but goes down more easily than most of the pap Hollywood tries to feed us every Christmas.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Few actors can match Carrey's ability to change his features and body language.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Hawn always appears to be acting with a vengeance, but Sarandon just breathes her part.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Over the course of 108 minutes, The Royal Tenenbaums drops downward on the humor scale from hilarious to funny to quirky to pretentiously bizarre to chaotic.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's not the dark comedy it wants to be - that would be "M*A*S*H" with a more modern setting and more gruesome consequences - but it's worth a look.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's watchable from start to finish, despite lapses in common sense, and it boasts a terrific cast of over-40 actors.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Offers high-speed helicopter chases, fireballing explosions, deadly laser guns, futuristic technology gone amok, multiple car crashes, two Arnold Schwarzeneggers for the price of one - almost everything except a plot that makes sense.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Kapur’s contradictory feelings about his material result in a movie that works against itself. As righteous and consistent as his anger may be -- it’s displayed from the opening title cards to the final shot -- it doesn’t blend successfully with the story.
    • 20 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Spade, who almost invariably plays smug or smarmy characters, proves he really can act.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    When we're outside Frank's body, Osmosis Jones drags. When we're inside him, it zooms.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The film, though seldom sleepy, is often hollow.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Production values are acceptable in the Klasky Csupo vein. If you know that company, you're prepared for animation that isn't conventionally attractive: flat backgrounds, characters with big heads, pushed-in faces and beanpole limbs.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The characters, irritating as they can be at first, grow on you as they grow up.
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The juice in "Man" comes from supporting characters.
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Director Steven Shainberg and writer Erin Cressida Wilson argue that everyone deserves the love that makes them happiest, and that these two will remain miserable until they stumble upon each other.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The supporting cast is almost uniformly good, from Conchata Ferrell as a sympathetic waitress to Erick Avari as a corporate type with a surprisingly big heart and a hidden silly streak. Turturro relishes his quiet overplaying and steals the bulk of his scenes.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The script's hokiness flattens the performances.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I don't mean to be negative, but I want Orny Adams hung naked over a pit of snapping crocodiles. That said, Comedian is a lightweight but appealing backstage film about two performers.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Vardalos is of Greek ancestry, which makes stereotyping permissible: She can tease Greeks, just as Italians can safely mock Italians or Jews can poke fun at Jews. But isn't it demeaning to reduce your heritage to clich?s?
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Parker's afraid that we'll be bored by the language alone, so he throws in absurdities.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Proves two things irrefutably. First, Fishburne doesn't get enough work that tests his acting abilities… Second, Luke's breakout performance in "Fisher" was no fluke.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    For all the story's bland familiarity, it has winning moments. Allen's no actor, but he projects a likeable personality.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    One of many small reasons to like The Recruit is that it pays homage to Kurt Vonnegut, a forgotten old lion of literature.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Nicholson operates in full-bore demonic mode in Anger Management, eclipsing gentle star Adam Sandler and satisfying everybody who's been waiting for Hollywood's Wild Man to cut loose once more.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Uproarious imbecility.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Ray Liotta and Jason Patric do some of their best work in their underwritten roles, but don't be fooled: Nobody deserves any prizes here.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    If only Hollywood studios weren't so addicted to happy, oversimplified endings, the film might leave us shaken instead of slightly stirred.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    DiCaprio is up to all but the heaviest emotional lifting; when he enters a maniacal phase, you wish for Martin Sheen, who did the "back to the jungle" thing better in "Apocalypse Now."
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Paul Schrader's movies depict dark nights of the soul, but sometimes you feel like you have to end the dark night with a shower. Auto Focus is such a movie.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The loosely autobiographical 8 Mile, an uneven but watchable drama about life in Detroit's slums, begins the shrewd transformation of vitriolic rapper Eminem into a mainstream figure.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Its familiar story has pleasing quirks.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It ends with the corniest convention of all: an absurd mano-a-mano between good and evil.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I do wonder why a gay director's best-known movies about straight guys, Talk to Her and "Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!," suggest that satisfying relationships with women are most easily achieved if they're 1) unconscious or 2) in bondage.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Many shallower movies these days seem too long, but this one is egregiously short.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Certainly satisfies our hunger for a light, bright dessert, yet it may leave you hungry for more.
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 26 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Technically, the film can stand with most releases. The cast includes veterans Hal Linden, Paul Rodriguez and Jennifer O'Neill, all of whom do good work.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The strongest parts of the film aren't these money shots, but the buildup to the gunplay.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Few modern thrillers aspire to look this striking.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Chaotic, sometimes funny.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The film goes from stylish to ghoulish to foolish.
    • Charlotte Observer
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Inside Moonlight Mile, an honest and heartbreakingly true movie is struggling to get out.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    A mixed bag with a huge amount of heart.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    A conventionally violent, do-or-die ending on such an unconventional movie.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The good-hearted Galaxy Quest delivers fun and confusion in equal measure, as it gently tweaks the fanaticism of "Star Trek"/"Star Wars" fans while validating it at the same time.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It combines elements of "Lord of the Rings," "Star Wars" and James Bond flicks with generically satisfying results.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I think Garland and Boyle just want to make our flesh creep by showing someone else's flesh decaying. If that's their aim, they achieved it.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Good idea for a movie about rebellious Asian Americans doesn't fully pan out.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Characters behave arbitrarily and incredibly, and a clumsy resolution brings the film to a thudding halt.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    About halfway through Irreversible comes the longest sustained act of violence I've seen onscreen.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I admire Cameron Crowe for daring to write and direct a movie as strange as Vanilla Sky. I lament the casting of Tom Cruise and Penelope Cruz in the leads.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    How odd that some of the most appealing elements of this new animation should be action sequences as old as cinema itself.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    This isn't really a narrative: It's a collection of mostly unrelated scenes, about half of which pay off.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Coppola lacks a firm grip on this material, and it starts to get away from her midway through.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Asks questions worth pondering. I only wished the writer-director-editor answered more of them.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Entertaining and preposterous in nearly equal amounts.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    You can also see Sylvia without realizing she could be witty and bemused, qualities apparent in her posthumously published novel, "The Bell Jar." This book, which spoke to sensitive girls of the 1960s like few others, is mentioned once in passing in the film. We never see her writing it or learn what it means to her.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The only thing they don't take time for is characterization, which the story badly needs.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    A gently pleasing if mostly undramatic picture.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Polly works best when writer-director John Hamburg gets his mind out of the water closet, and it's in there about two-fifths of the way. The rest of the time, he's assembling a hit-and-miss comedy with reasonable numbers of laughs and lots of personality from its two leads.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    For all the irrelevant silliness, though, the movie never loses sight of its romantic center, and the script doesn't cop out with phony miracles or sudden changes of direction.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The main message of this drama is driven home with emotional hammer blows.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Performances are simple and complementary, and Hidalgo's potential death scene sustains suspense as much as is equinely possible.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Will dazzle you while establishing the world in which it takes place. After that, you may wonder whether Guillermo del Toro got amnesia halfway through.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    All the actors give performances so low-key they're almost minimalist. That works, except when we're supposed to believe every woman would throw herself at the closed-off Joe.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Garner bounces around gleefully as the young spirit enveloped by this adult body. She's young enough herself to remember what it was like to be that age, and she has the vulnerability, zest and slightly over-the-top reactions of a seventh-grader.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It requires an almost childlike faith to get into the spirit of Stroke of Genius, an old-fashioned willingness to believe that the world was once this way - and might, somehow, become this way again.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I never did sort out the gangsters fighting for control of a 19th-century town, nor did I figure out exactly what happened to the main henchman. But I was rarely bored.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    We get pleasure watching two sets of likeable, convincing actors move toward their foreordained futures. The film's affecting ending proves familiarity needn't breed contempt, after all.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Yet for all the fun the sequel provides, the series shows signs of wearing out quickly, unless characters get developed thoroughly and in unexpected ways.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    As a movie, it's a mixed bag with a huge amount of heart.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's a passably made, grittily acted slice of life in Texas that veers not an inch from the norm for this sort of picture.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Bits can be extremely funny. I howled at the ranting, mustard-splotched, wiener-waving Michael Moore.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Like a palate-cleansing sherbet in place of an entre?. It's mildly flavorful going down, leaves us hungry for something more substantial and fades from memory the moment we've finished it.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Has more psychological complexity than the average suspense drama, and the results prove more satisfying than not.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    While the 29 pages of his (Van Allsburg's) mini-classic would have made a superb half-hour TV special, Zemeckis and writer William Broyles Jr. have created a steroidal monster with a heart about one size too small.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    A marginally above average crime caper with one big plot twist that's pretty tough to believe but mildly interesting to consider.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's the most claustrophobic, airless movie of the year, a menage a quatre among unstable, manipulative, needy people who prey on each other like sharks at a feeding frenzy of the emotions.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    If you wanted this "Snicket" movie (and the presumed flood of sequels) to be faithful to the novels, you have come to the wrong franchise.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The real stars are the orchestrators and musicians who swaddled Spacey in a gorgeous blanket of sound.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Weitz has done one remarkable thing in "Company" that doesn't strike you until later: He's given us a functional family that overcomes difficulties with patience and effort.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Bride has atmosphere and charm, but the exotic flavors have often been toned down to avoid complaints.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Maybe this is a case of too many cooks spoiling a simple broth: The movie had four producers, five executive producers, three writers (credited ones, anyhow) and three editors.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Heartwarming drama.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I groaned at cliches and grinned at jokes in roughly equal measure.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Multiple lobotomies. That's the only way to explain what happens in the middle of Hitch, whose first hour sets up one of the brightest romantic comedies in months and whose second hour tears it down.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Willis, who'll turn 50 a week from Saturday, has this kind of hero down pat. He may never again get or demand the complicated dramatic roles I think he could handle, but he's well-cast.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Starts as sweetly impossible and ends as impossibly sweet.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Whatever you think of Melinda and Melinda, you have to admire Woody Allen for this: After years of criticism that he didn't use people of color in films, he's written two interracial romances.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Bullock good, but King reigns in movie sequel.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    An old-fashioned suspense drama with an old-fashioned belief at its core: Justice can be done in the world, and the United Nations is the global organization to do it.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Except for the irritating Rockwell, the cast suits the characters.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Though it starts slowly, it lumbers toward greatness in the last third and restores him [Lucas] briefly to the top of his class.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The performances do shine out through this dramatic miasma.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    This is strictly a picture for the target audience, though it seems to hit that target regularly.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Puts a fun, frothy spin on the 1960s TV show before sinking back into the mundane.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Watching Wedding Crashers is like stuffing yourself with raw cookie dough. It's a guilty pleasure that goes down easily, but you can't help wondering what it would've tasted like if someone had finished the job.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    This giddy summer extravaganza does deliver aerial thrills with eye-dazzling visuals and ear-smacking (though beautifully designed) sound.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I didn't believe most of what I saw until the last 20 minutes, and whaddaya know? This thriller finally cast the spell it had been trying to achieve and lifted itself above the pack of late-summer, clean-out-the-studio-attic releases.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Tthe kind of movie the clergy can recommend to anxious parishioners.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Crowe likes to work with large ensembles...But he doesn't know when we've had enough, however interesting they all may be; he's like a guy who decorates a Christmas tree with so many ornaments that you can't see the foliage.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    North Country resorts to theatrics a judge would squelch after one outburst, as director Niki Caro and writer Michael Seitzman aim for a "Spartacus" feel.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    You must cast aside all rules of our space-time continuum to appreciate a fantasy like this one, though even then you might consider 130 minutes to be too much of a good thing.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Handsome and competently acted and prettily shot and all the other things critics say when what they really want to scream is "Aaaaaaaargh! No more Jane Austen adaptations, ESPECIALLY not Pride and Prejudice.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I recommend it to anyone who needs proof that people past 60 have dreams, skills and/or sex lives.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Perhaps the director should make only silent movies. Scenes where characters communicate via eyes and body language usually work here, even if we don't know exactly what's going on.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Last Holiday floats along on the broad shoulders of one of our most able dramatic comedians. Without her, it would sag like a punctured souffle.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Performances keep the film afloat and focused whenever it threatens to drift. Deschanel, Harris and Warner are ideally cast. You might not think Ferrell would be, but he gives a different performance than I've seen from him.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The credits say DiNorscio, who died during filming in 2004, never informed on anyone. But is that such a great thing? If you live in a sewer, is it so terrible to be a rat?
    • 77 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Feuerzeig leaves a lot of territory unexplored. Why did people overlook his suffering and bizarre behavior for so long? Were they cold-hearted profiteers, onlookers enjoying a freak show or honestly ignorant of his troubles? Are there links between Johnston's creativity and madness?
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    What keeps this from cloying? Universally good performances, led by Banderas' blazing intensity.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Most crucially, we don't learn what brought the four women together; Olivia's so much younger than the others that there's no reason to think they'd ever have befriended her.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Director Brett Ratner can't make chicken a la king out of chicken droppings, and that's what writers Simon Kinberg ("XXX: State of the Union") and Zak Penn ("Elektra") supply.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's a pleasant but insubstantial excuse for a film.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The casting is weaker this time. Watching Peck crumble under fear and doubt was like seeing a skyscraper implode; Schreiber's more of a whipped puppy for most of the film.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The summer's most anticipated film, and it gives fans what they want - then more of what they want, and more, and more, until gluttony becomes force-feeding.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It's watchable, due to the rotoscoping technique...It's also as lightweight as the smoke rings blown by one of many perverse, dull characters.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    All of Barnyard is odd. Oddly funny much of the way, oddly serious when it makes room for the early death of a beloved character or the hushed birth of another, oddly musical with its melange of hip-hop and reggae and hard rock and bluegrass.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The picture feels like an entertaining short story, competently executed at undue length, and that's its origin.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Lane, perhaps the most underrated actress of those deemed employable in their 40s, wonderfully embodies the mogul's wife.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    With its twist, the movie leaps into a fresh realm of fantasy. But director Marc Forster and first-time screenwriter Zach Helm don't know what to do when they get there, and the film's greatest asset almost becomes its undoing.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Everyone's entitled to a slump, and this is only the first blah film in five for Guest.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    If you want my rock-solid statement on whether The Fountain is a masterpiece or a muddle, check with me in 2026.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    There's an extraordinary subplot in Blood Diamond, sandwiched between a main story meant to arouse outrage and a Hollywood-clumsy finale meant to provoke a standing ovation.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Letters covers less emotional ground than its predecessor, because Eastwood and first-time writer Iris Yamashita (who shares a story credit with Paul Haggis) allow Japanese soldiers only three modes of behavior.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The result is a beautiful painting come to stately, intermittent life.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Cool. Stupid. Juiced-up. Feeble. Stripped-down. Self-indulgent. Clever. Sophomoric.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    If the longest and beefiest "Spider-Man" movie to date were a baseball player, it would be tested tomorrow for steroids. That won't stop "S-M 3" from hitting a home run at the box-office, where fans will roar.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Hector Elizondo, who has appeared in all 15 of Marshall's features, turns up as a Basque rancher and adds a bit of sparkle. I just wish Marshall's good luck charm was not a 70-year-old actor but a fresh, honest screenplay.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    When will the people who adapt comic books into films realize that less can be so much more?
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I can safely say I've never seen anything as ridiculous as Live Free or Die Hard. I'm not saying my 10-year-old self didn't enjoy a lot of it.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It paints its world in pastels, but the subject cries out for vivid colors.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It takes its plot from the 2001 German film about a workaholic chef, dumbing down the original slightly and inserting a couple of phony crises. You're spared not only subtitles but subtlety.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Movies about artists play fast and loose with truth, but this is a hoot.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie gets full marks for earning its G rating: no violence, no cursing, no sex or nudity, no drugs, not even a rogue cigarette blotting the landscape. It's easier to achieve this rating when your hero barely speaks and has little consciousness of the adult world, but "Holiday" proves it can be done-and should be more often.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Johansson, hair dyed brown to make her seem less glamorous, spices up this bland role.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    In the end, your reaction to "Hour" may depend on your feelings about humanity's collective common sense.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Journalists have a saying for someone who neglects or downplays the most important part of a news story: He buried the lead. That's what Paul Haggis does with "In the Valley of Elah," which submerges two important storylines beneath a pointless, unsatisfying whodunit.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I can tell you in nine words whether you'll want to see The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford: Writer-director Andrew Dominik wants to be Terrence Malick.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    To my detached eye, this slender biography suggests that Curtis went from a faintly interested glam-rock wannabe of 16 to a mildly talented performer to a quietly glum fellow of 23 whose frustrations drove him to suicide.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie Rendition asks, admittedly in a one-sided way, whether the ends justify these means.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Cook has as much depth as a coaster, so it's impossible under any circumstances to imagine Binoche falling in love with him. Her complicated, heartfelt performance is the reason to see the film: When she's around, she pierces the soothing gray nothingness with shafts of sunlight.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Steven Zaillian never seems completely at home with these characters, not because he's white but because he's a cerebral screenwriter frustrated with a story that gives him little that's meaningful to say. Like Washington and Crowe, he's a chef functioning here as a short-order cook: The meal's perfectly edible but falls short of delicious.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    All true, but not new -- and not especially compelling.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    People's eyes still look as glassy and dull as a taxidermized possum's. But if you're going to Beowulf to experience the sweeping passions that only real eyes can convey, you're missing the point.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Fairly entertaining, repetitive exhortations of a televangelist who looks like Kurt Russell playing Elvis Presley with 12 additional teeth.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    There's plenty to admire in the performances and atmosphere, but the writer-director needed someone to pull him up short.
    • 97 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    It makes "The Death of Mr. Lazarescu" and "12:08 East of Bucharest," the last glum Romanian movies about life under dictator Nicolae Ceausescu, seem merry.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    One thing the movie does well is skewer Bill Clinton. Though Hayes works for him and nominally defends him to detractors, we see old sins rehashed: Gennifer Flowers, Monica Lewinsky, his impeachment.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Thirty minutes into Be Kind Rewind, you may wonder what you're doing in the theater. Sixty minutes into it, if you have stayed, you will know.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Green knows how to convey a mood visually and develop tension with his camera. He just doesn't give people enough interesting things to say or know when to shut them up.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Someone watching Stop-Loss with younger eyes might feel the heat of the main soldier's dilemma more than I did, but I couldn't help thinking director Kimberly Peirce was presenting us with abstract ideas in the forms of half-realized characters.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    If you're an elementary schooler or someone who finds Gerard Butler irresistible even when fully clothed, Nim's Island may be a treat to watch. If not, it's likelier to be a chore.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    An endearing, well-acted trifle with lovely intentions.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Is it a bad thing that Disney has commercialized, denatured and inflated the story to make it indistinguishable from any handsome sword-and-sorcery epic? Perhaps not, for it IS handsome on its grand scale.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Fanboys won't mind the absence of depth or emotion; they may even welcome it for making the film more representative of its comic-book origins. The rest of us, however, cannot rejoice at the overspending and overkill likely to come in Hellboy III.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    So the science in this film of Jules Verne's science fiction classic is ludicrous. Well, how's the fiction? Not terrible.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Has its heart in the right place and its head shoved well down into a box of clichés.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The movie's a crazy quilt of pot jokes, sarcastic put-downs and pop culture references both obvious and obscure.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    So I was curious to see why we needed a two-hour documentary about the three-hit wonder who cast away his career halfway through life and coasted on celebrity status for 30 years. After seeing Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, I'm still not convinced we do.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    If inciting boredom is the worst sin a filmmaker can commit, being timid is right behind it. Whether I agree with your point of view or not, I want to hear it.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    The romance seems tacked on as a way to humanize this character; there's no reason the nurse would take up with a brash, secretive American.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Monaghan gives a solid performance, and Billy Bob Thornton has sarcastically funny bits as an FBI agent.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Alfred Hitchcock once said, "Drama is life with the dull bits left out." Well, Rachel Getting Married is drama with the dull bits left in.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    I can't explain the film's main problem without giving plot points away; suffice to say that, after decades of watching Earth, Klaatu's team of observers has missed a crucial event you and I witness every day. I can tell you about the secondary problem, though: too much money.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet do exactly what’s asked of them as Frank and April Wheeler, who may be ironically named: They spin emotional wheels constantly but get nowhere.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Lawrence Toppman
    Jon Favreau, J.K. Simmons, Thomas Lennon and half a dozen other capable comedians drift in and out. Yet the movie seems long even at 105 minutes.

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