Maitland McDonagh
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For 2,229 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 43% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 4.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Maitland McDonagh's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 54
Highest review score: 100 King Kong
Lowest review score: 0 Zombie! vs. Mardi Gras
Score distribution:
2,229 movie reviews
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    But the real marvel is that beneath the ghoulish in-jokes and horror-geek allusions, there's a core of the same bittersweet truth that makes the best fairy tales resonate from one generation to the next.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    The appealing Knightley goes in a promising young actress and comes out a star, but the faultless cast of veterans and fresh-faced newcomers imbues every character with flawed and immensely appealing humanity.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    But overall, Jackson goes for the magic by sidestepping every error of judgment and failure of imagination that brought the ponderous 1976 remake thudding to Earth before Kong ever did. He delivers three solid hours of breathless, enchanting entertainment.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    Cornish's raw, nuanced performance and Shortland's sympathetic but unsentimental portrayal of Heidi's fumbling steps toward maturity are underscored by Sydney-based band Decoder Ring's catchy, angst-ridden score.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    It concludes Park's trilogy on a dual note of circular tragedy and fragile hope, while working equally well as an introduction to his universe of retribution and repentance or as a stand-alone thriller with a darkly feminist twist.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    A thrilling return to form.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    Despite the absence of dialogue -- the mice squeak and the oak creatures caw like ravens -- Cegavske imbues her scrappy little creatures with disturbingly complex personalities. And if the tale's moral is less than clear, its haunting images speak directly to some dark, preverbal corner of the heart.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    Director Carl Franklin, who also adapted the screenplay from Walter Mosley's prize-winning novel, isn't particularly concerned with the machinations of mystery plots. Nor is he seduced by the temptations of noir visual style (although Tak Fujimoto's camera work is plenty stylish).
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    Crammed with outrageous turns of fortune and quicksilver shifts in tone, Almodovar's film is held together by performances so subtle and complex it's hard to single out only one as exceptional. But Cruz is astonishing.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    Del Toro's film ranks with the best examinations of children's inner lives, but be warned: Its haunting insights are best left to adults.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    Fincher gets it all right, and Donovan's hippie-dippy "Hurdy Gurdy Man," which bookends the story, has never sounded so hauntingly menacing.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    By turns awe-inspiring and deeply human.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Maitland McDonagh
    That Ledger stands out in such a powerhouse ensemble is a tribute to his radically unhinged interpretation of a familiar character: The lank hair tinged seaweed green, the darting tongue and faint lisp that call constant attention to the ghastly rictus of his mouth, the nightmarishly smudged make up… taken together, they make previous Jokers feel like, well, jokes.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Maitland McDonagh
    Enthralling or infuriating.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Avrich's colorful account of Wasserman's career starts out looking like a puff piece, but quickly reveals a refreshing willingness to delve into the dirty side of a glamorous business.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    The film's tone is set by a bravura opening sequence that follows a single bullet from a factory conveyer belt to its resting place in a child's skull, and by Cage's flawlessly sardonic voice-over.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    For all the bloodshed, it's fundamentally a cold, cold fable, the icy whisper that turns every happy thing to ash.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Bleak, darkly humorous and surprisingly unsentimental, Michael Winterbottom's film has the desperate air of a cri de coeur, and unlike many fiction films about war, its use of real-life footage seems in no way inappropriate or exploitative.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    It's wonderfully satisfying: Collette, MacLaine and Diaz are exceptional, and the mix of humor and heartbreak is perfectly calibrated.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    This tribute to old-fashioned hard-boiled detective fiction is laced with Hollywood satire and snappy, lightning-fast dialogue.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    British documentarian Peter Bate frames a mix of archival materials and re-creations with a "trial" at which Leopold listens to testimony against him from within a wood-and-glass booth, like Nazi Adolf Eichmann at Nuremberg.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Feels astonishingly fresh, filled with subtle performances and devastatingly understated images - Sautet's final shot of Davos alone in a Paris crowd is a killer.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Though the film's downbeat ending was softened for U.S. release, it's still a long way from happy.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    The thorny heart of Steven Spielberg's sober, fact-based political thriller about Israeli retaliation for the murder of 11 Olympic athletes by Palestinian terrorists is the knowledge that vengeance is a self-perpetuating murder machine that drags successive generations into a mire of tit-for-tat bloodshed.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Xiao's bittersweet film is superficially a swoony love letter to the cinema. But her valentine has a hidden sting, rooted in some hard truths about movie mania.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    The film's title refers both to tiny, fish-shaped vials of liquid heroin and the small fry flitting around the edges of the urban drug scene.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    If your idea of fun involves zombies, monstrous physical transformations and alien slugs bent on world domination, look no further than James Gunn's gleeful homage to all things gross and horrible actually makes good on the "horror comedy" label by being both flat-out creepy and darkly funny.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Casually paced and filled with telling detail, Yamada's delicate drama with swordplay (there's not much, but what there is packs an emotional wallop) transcends its specific setting in its depiction of Katagiri's internal struggle.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Miike's goofy, gallant, action-packed fantasy deserves to become a classic family film.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    The film rests entirely on Poupaud's shoulders, and he rises to the demands of a complex, deeply unsympathetic role.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    The result is hypnotic.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Mirren, who's played her share of queens in the past, is hypnotic.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    The film's prestige is a doozy, both dazzling and preposterous, but if you're watching closely -- as Cutter advises in the film's first few minutes -- it's flawlessly set up.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Nelson's film eschews sensationalism, and knowing how the story ends in no way diminishes its visceral impact.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Barbarously beautiful and gut-wrenchingly (literally) violent, it's a mesmerizing vision of the past refracted through the dark obsessions of the present.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Murphy is a revelation as James, and what American Idol castoff Hudson lacks in technical acting craft she makes up for in raw energy and a voice that could melt the rhinestones off a beauty queen. To complain that Beyonce pales by comparison is to fault her for nailing the essence of the infinitely malleable Deena.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    It's a lavish entertainment that revels in lurid colors and yet more lurid emotions.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Skrovan swears that during two years of filming, Nader's only demand was, "Make sure you talk to people who oppose me."
    • 85 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Boon's film is both funny and heartbreaking, a supremely confident mix of political satire, free-floating paranoia, fractured family dynamics and the kind of comedy that regularly reconfigures itself into tragedy.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    The vicious clamor the film occasioned in the U.K. is simply the measure of how volatile a subject the relationship between England and Ireland remains more than eight decades after the film's events, and the thinking viewer can hardly help but see parallels between the Irish insurgency and all subsequent guerrilla conflicts.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    While Rachel's story is fiction, many of its incidents are rooted in historical events carefully researched by Soeteman and the film's briskly staged action and stunning reversals of fortune ensure that its two and a half hours fly by.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    It's as laceratingly entertaining as its predecessor.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Audacious, hypnotic and utterly breathtaking.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    It's a high-energy blast.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    It's sometimes wrenching to watch, but it's too gripping to turn away from.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    It's the rare action picture whose adrenaline-driven thrills neither overshadow the characters nor degenerate into cartoonish preposterousness.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Like "Air Guitar Nation," the stranger-than-fiction cast of characters is fascinating, and their high-stakes machinations are nothing short of mind-boggling.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    An icily seductive parable about family, power, unconventional justice and the perils of answered prayers.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Bar-Lev also explores the freakish popular appeal of child prodigies, the family dynamics that come into play when a child's celebrity and earning capacity overshadows the adults', and the remarkably conflicted and contradictory admissions drawn from Brunelli about Marla's work.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Tim Burton's grand guignol fantasy transforms Stephen Sondheim's 1979 musical-theater piece into a cheerfully gothic morality tale.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    McCarthy's flawless casting may be the film's greatest strength: Veteran character actor Jenkins and his costars vanish into their characters -- their performances are so subtle and unforced that they don't feel like performances at all.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    Margaret Brown's documentary is actually an examination of the racial divide in a city that claims there is none.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Maitland McDonagh
    David Lynch lite.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    An exhilarating, funny and deeply sad story of growing pains that works on two levels; it's a feel-good story that quietly undermines the notion of gain without loss.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Brooding ghost story is rich with psychological and political implications that never obscure its fundamental creepiness.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Errol Morris' characteristically distanced documentary is empathetic without being especially sympathetic.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Beatty's contribution to the ranks of recent political satire is bold, merciless and frequently very funny, and his performance is just plain fearless.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Maguire and Douglas are extraordinary (though Douglas feels a little old for his role, which seems to have been written for a man in his early 40s); even Downey Jr. delivers a sharp, understated performance.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Witty and beautifully textured.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Campbell Scott's fiendishly mercurial performance as razor-tongued womanizer Roger is a revelation but it's only one of this nimble film's pleasures.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The roots of Steve James's disturbing documentary lie in youthful idealism.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    It's a mixed blessing, in some ways even richer and more atmospheric than the original version, in others attenuated and logy.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Overall the film is a fascinating glimpse into an insular world that gives the lie to many clichés and showcases a group of dedicated artists.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    An intensely internalized portrait of external pandemonium, a slippery, insidiously haunting work of poetry rather than brilliantly realized pulp.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    First-time feature director Tucker displays an astonishingly assured touch, allowing his phenomenal cast to creep into their characters' skins and surrounding them with images of shimmering and slightly threatening beauty.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    In light of the aesthetic of ugliness that informs von Trier's Dogme films, it's easy to forget how subtly beautiful his work once was.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    An astonishing movie that keeps you off-balance from the first scene.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Meticulously observed and devastatingly well-acted.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The film's extra-special trick, the one that kicks in under your radar because it's so busy with all the flash, is that it makes you care deeply for Lola and Manni.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    While both the novel and the film are weighted in favor of Bill's (Cruise) character, it's Kidman who gives the film's standout performance.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    It's as chilling as Algernon Blackwood's elegantly unnerving "The Willows," played absolutely, unsettlingly straight.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    A fantastic symphony of decay (Decay + Fantasia = Decasia), simultaneously heartbreakingly beautiful and exquisitely sad, pieced together from snippets of old films on the verge of oblivion.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    This ode to the peculiar strength and flexibility of love, romantic and platonic, is simultaneously perverse, overwrought, deeply creepy and truly moving, a high-wire act that finds humor in the grotesque and hope in emotional malformation.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The second version of Graham Greene's sad and prescient 1955 novel about American involvement in Vietnam hews far closer to the book than the first, preserving the sophisticated ambiguity of his depiction of a tangled struggle for power played out on both personal and political fronts.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Anderson strikes a near flawless balance between looseness and structure, and indulges the occasional flight of cinematic fancy without undermining the movie's emotional integrity.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Black comedy of the deepest, richest darkness laid over an aching meditation on the atrophy of dreams.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The movie's greatest strength lies in phenomenal performances that reach from the leads right down to the smallest supporting roles.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The film satisfies on both visceral and emotional levels.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    A brilliantly realized series of sucker punches, a philosophical howl disguised as a muscular guy movie.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    This dazzling pop allegory is steeped in a dark, pulpy sensibility that transcends nostalgic pastiche and stands firmly on its own merits.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Ritchie appears to have been paying attention to what made "Reservoir Dogs" (a huge hit in the UK) work, rather than coming away convinced that the formula for success begins and ends with pop-culture allusions and scarcely digested "homages" to classic crime films.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Absolutely breathtaking documentary whose close-up shots of birds in flight are so freakishly intimate that the film is compelled to open with the statement they're not special effects.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    It's a shimmering, thorny, and consummately self-aware valentine to a paradise, however illusory, lost.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The horror of LaBute's articulate, self-deluded characters is that they're both sharply drawn and just vague enough that you can insert face here.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Tarantino maintains a flawless balance between flat-out action, quirky dialogue, stylish homages to the glistening shadows of film-noir thrillers, the sun-baked brutality of Westerns (American and Italian), the ritualistic rhythms of Shaw Brothers martial-arts pictures from the 1970s and quietly dramatic moments, shifting between them with quicksilver facility.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The aliens, meanwhile, are a fabulously nasty lot of slimy, tentacled, malevolent telepaths, but all their superior technology is no match for our red, white and blue ingenuity. Take that, space bullies!
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The rare sequel that actually improves on the original, this robust entertainment's intelligence and emotional impact belie conventional wisdom that summer movie spectaculars are by nature brainless nonsense and only a stupid snob would complain about their cynical insubstantiality.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    There isn't a one-note character in the mix, and they respond with haunting, subtle performances that feel utterly natural and unaffected. It's a striking debut for Estes, and a remarkable showcase for the cast.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    An extraordinary technical achievement.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    Offbeat documentary filmmakers Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato dissect the history and legend of perhaps the best known and most profitable pornographic movies ever made.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    This is absolutely not a film for all tastes, but it's a masterpiece of pitiless power whose audacious, ambiguous climax strikes a note of insane romanticism as haunting as it is perverse.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    An intoxicatingly beautiful, maddeningly elliptical and utterly enthralling meditation on the fleeting pleasures and haunting aftermath of doomed romance.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 Maitland McDonagh
    The only constant in Park's brilliantly cruel world is this: No matter how badly things seem to be going, there's a twist of fate lurking around the next curve that will make them worse.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Frothy, sentimental and thoroughly good-natured, Malcolm D. Lee's tale of coming-of-age at the roller disco doesn't have an original bone in its body, but it's as energetic, eager to please and endearing as a sloppy, wriggling puppy.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It features truly monstrous bogeymen in the Reavers, cannibalistic renegades who, legend has it, went to the edge of the universe and were driven mad by the abyss.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Though the story meanders, the film's look is nothing short of breathtaking.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    But it's also old-fashioned family drama that invites audience participation ("Don't you go making eyes at your cousin's husband, you little slut!"), and is surprisingly satisfying, in a gooey kind of way -- like macaroni and cheese or peach cobbler, perhaps.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Until the disappointingly conventional ending, in which dad and the head baddie go it mano a mano on the streets, this dark drama -- based on a 1956 Glenn Ford picture of the same name -- negotiates its narrative twists and turns with professional aplomb, even daring to make the hero an arrogant schmuck.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The writers get the mix just about right, and first-time Bond director Martin Campbell moves things along fairly briskly.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Beautifully acted and emotionally devastating.

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