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 5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Maitland McDonagh's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 54
Highest review score: 100 In the Shadow of the Moon
Lowest review score: 0 The Hottie & the Nottie
Score distribution:
2,229 movie reviews
    • 81 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    As M, Dench knows she has a tiger by the tail and isn't fazed in the slightest. Reservations aside, the film marks the beginning of a new phase in James Bond's history, and it promises to be a gripping one.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Strong performances and sharp dialogue distinguish Jeff Lipsky's melancholy second feature, which charts the two-year course of a "perfect" relationship whose flaws are evident from the outset.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Levy and Guest train a glaring spotlight on the self-absorption, vanity, delusions and histrionics of the movie community, but clearly love them even at their silliest.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Seething with suggestions of perverse pleasures and inchoate horror, this dark fairy tale won't win the Pennsylvania-born, London-based Quay brothers any new fans -- it plays to the converted, and the converted know who they are.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Though Estevez's achievement doesn't quite live up to his ambitions -- the climax of Altman's "Nashville" (1975) evokes the same brutal loss of innocence to more shattering effect -- it still contains enough powerful moments to balance the weaker sections.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Bielinsky's "Nine Queens" was a complex romp through the machinations of high-stakes con artists, but this intricately plotted mystery ventures into darker psychological territory and never misses a step.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    An utterly preposterous but entertaining sci-fi action brain-bender.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Solomonoff cuts back and forth between 1984 and 1976, gradually revealing the truth of what happened, but the mystery is less important than the complex relationship between Natalia and Elena, which was sorely tested by events beyond their control.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Roth's screenplay, steeped in the peculiar rituals, lock-jawed repression and smug sense of superiority of the WASP ruling class that both shaped America's intelligence community and made it vulnerable, is less interested in derring-do than back-room deals and the day-to-day drudgery of spying, driven by the notion that espionage is a cynical high-stakes game played with people's lives and the ante is human decency and connectedness.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    No, it isn't as magically enchanting as the 1952 children's classic by E.B. White, any more than a museum-shop print of La Giaconda is as mysteriously beguiling as Leonardo's original. But this respectful, live-action adaptation of White's gentle tale about an undersized pig, a clever spider and the everyday marvels that too often pass unnoticed is a charmer nonetheless.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Though O'Toole, whose ruined beauty Michell emphasizes in frequent and tight close-ups, and newcomer Whittaker have a striking rapport, the film's most haunting moments pair him with Vanessa Redgrave -- amazingly, this is their first movie together -- as his ex-wife. They evoke a lifetime of love, betrayal, regret and forgiveness in the space of a few lines, then move on without missing a beat.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    A deep and astonishingly authentic streak of melancholy runs through this fifth sequel to the 1976 sleeper that made both struggling actor Sylvester Stallone and hard-luck slugger Rocky Balboa international stars.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    "Charlie's Angels" director Joseph McGinty Nichol (aka McG) shows surprising restraint with this emotionally freighted material, weighting the movie heavily towards relationships.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The screenplay, which differs significantly from the novel, is uneven, but the distorted mirror it holds up to the present is disturbingly clear.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Though at heart a tightly-wound, bitterly bleak comedy of manners, Eyre's film is less funny than brilliantly squirm-inducing, a dissection of bad behavior via rapier-sharp dialogue.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The mockumentary conceit gives a vivid immediacy to the material, and the PAL digital video cinematography is often surprisingly lyrical -- certain shots of empty, fog-shrouded San Francisco sites more than make up in eeriness what they lack in special-effects decrepitude.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    A delirious fever dream of pulp-western conventions by way of 1950s Hollywood melodrama, Thai filmmaker Wisit Sasanatieng surreal oddity unfolds in heavily manipulated colors so rich they seem ready to leap off the screen, punctuated by spasms of over-ripe dialogue, floridly dramatic songs and maniacal villainous laughter.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Unlike most mainstream filmmakers, Ratnam doesn't try to include something for everyone, but he does deliver several handsome production numbers.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    For rip-snorting pop entertainment, it's one discomfiting, nasty piece of work, and ain't that a kick in the head.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Opening with the Mohandas Gandhi epigram "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind," it humanizes the bombers without excusing their actions.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The twists and turns continue until the very end of Choi's mesmerizing, high-energy romp, whose 139 minutes zip by like a round of speed poker.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's not earthshaking or life-changing, but it's cute, occasionally predictable and only requires ACTUAL idiots, like Barry, to act like idiots. As formula entertainment goes, that's a pretty sweet deal.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Phillippe has the unenviable task of trying to make O'Neill equally interesting, but an eager beaver with some unresolved family issues is no match for a poisoned soul methodically laying the groundwork for his own inevitable fall. The unfortunate imbalance makes long stretches of the film feel dull, but when Cooper is on screen it's mesmerizing.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Thompson's stories are familiar, but she weaves them together with such assurance and good humor that they're equally soothing and thoroughly enjoyable.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    A workmanlike piece of storytelling elevated by fine performances.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The person who can resist a formerly homeless senior citizen gradually restored to sufficient stability to the degree that he can take in his own "castaway cat" is hard-hearted indeed.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    300
    It may not be by-the-book history -- a relative term in any event, when discussing the ancients whose worldview embraced men, gods and monsters -- but what a spectacle!
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Like "Secret Things," the film is ultimately infuriating, subtle, self-indulgent, astute and disingenuous, which makes for great -- if divisive -- conversation.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Wahlberg acquits himself well, and the supporting cast -- which includes pioneering rocker Levon Helm in a scene-stealing cameo as an aging gun buff who knows a thing or two about cover-ups, Ned Beatty as a corrupt politician, and a Strangelovian Rade Serbedzija -- is so strong you almost wish the film were longer so they could have more screen time.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Without their efforts, ordinary moviegoers would never know that air-guitar competitors must craft a series of one-minute routines, some to songs they've only just heard, or that their efforts are judged on the 4.0 to 6.0 scale used to rank competitive figure skaters. Important to know? No. Fascinating? Absolutely.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Shrewder than you'd think and not half as dumb as it looks.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Linear storytelling was never Herzog's strong suit even under the best of conditions. His strength lies in capturing lucid lunacy on film, and Manoel da Silva's descent into the jaws of madness is a straight shot into the heart of darkness, a place familiar to both Herzog and Kinski.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's vivid evidence that great music and stories transcend time and place.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Overall, Grindhouse may well be the Beatlemania of sleaze-movie viewing, but since the real thing is gone it's the best that many fans will ever have.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Seeks to set the record straight. But Gere's sneaky, ingratiating presence keeps it dishonest to the last frame.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Resnais cuts constantly between the various narrative threads, signaling each change of scene with a superimposed shower of snowflakes; it's a highly artificial device, and a deceptively lovely one that reinforces the sense that all Ayckbourn's characters are slowly succumbing to an emotional chill.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The best thing about Fracture is the way in which it defies genre cliches and turns all Hopkins' mannerisms into assets.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Raimi and company deftly balance spectacle and character-based drama, occasionally tweaking the comic-book mythology but always respecting creator Stan Lee's idea that costumed crime-fighter Peter Parker's life as Spider-Man isn't all derring-do and public accolades.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Sigourney Weaver and Alan Rickman imbue screenwriter Angela Pell's characters with a quiet authenticity that's surprisingly moving.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    This sly, subtle and very French psychological drama dissects the relationship between three insecure Sorbonne students and their deeply flawed idol.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Deraspe's film begins as a mystery and becomes a razor-sharp dissection of the self-promotion, pretension and deeply cynical inner workings of the art world. But her greatest achievement is painting the business of art as venal, corrupt, mendacious and built on false surfaces without suggesting that art itself is a form of glorious deception.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    As is always the case with compilation films, some segments are far better than others. But they're all so brief that the least of them passes quickly and the best are small miracles of economical storytelling.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    28 Weeks Later is flawed -- the constant reappearance of one key character verges on the absurd -- but it knows where it's going, and it gets there in a chilling blaze of fire, blood and poisonous fog.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Spare, elegant and tailor-made for intense discussions over dark coffee, Boe's film is a slily bold and delightfully inventive variation on an age-old theme.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Filmmaker Barry Hershey's impressionistic documentary about the casting process is the antidote to years of comic "audition montages," those guaranteed laugh-getting freak-show parades of no-talents mangling monologues and pulling nutty stunts in hopes of standing out from the crowd.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The story is compelling enough that even glib phrases like "healing through hip-hop" can't drag it down.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The movie opens with the dismal statistic that most teachers quit after three years. Akel and Mass see the humor in the situation, but the laughs are small and sad.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Clever, fast-paced and surprisingly moving.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Lafosse's razor sharp dissection of relationships strained to the breaking point is hypnotic in a road-accident kind of way.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Veers regularly into disease-of-the-week territory but is rescued by the powerhouse performances of Ken Watanabe (who was instrumental in getting the film made) and Kanako Higuchi.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's a great place to visit, even if you wouldn't want to live there.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Jim Brown and Gary Burns hang a powerful antisuburban diatribe in the form of statistics, expert opinions and pictures worth a thousand words on the experiences of the Moss family.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Sleek, stylish and ephemeral as a fireworks display, Ocean's Thirteen is the definition of light, but not totally brainless, entertainment.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Funny, perceptive, bawdy, tragic and philosophical, pretty much everything a viewer -- or a listener -- could ask for.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It aspires to greater moral ambiguity than the average crime thriller, and if it doesn't entirely succeed it nevertheless avoids the lazy moral bankruptcy of movies like "Lethal Weapon 4."
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    A cut above the noisy, pop-culture joke-larded norm, and it's much more than a "Happy Feet" knockoff.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's just a clever, pointed little fable about the price of complacent conformity, slavish worship of the status quo, and trading freedom for the illusion of safety, wrapped in a sugary-sweet, Jordan-almond-colored coating that looks good enough to eat.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Gypsy music is the music of pain, poverty and oppression, all of which she's experienced; it's their blues.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Thalbach's passionate performance is the film's center, but she's aided by a strong supporting cast, Jarre's propulsive score and the gritty locations: It was shot at the very shipyard where real-life history was made.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The film's climax, which cuts back and forth between the 16-year-old Dongo (Silas Radies, whose younger brother plays Dongo as a ten year old) making his dangerous debut with the fly-by-night Aurora Circus and the 2002 competition that takes him back to Hungary for the first time in years is nothing short of riveting.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Horror buffs in search of a fresh take on the usual grue should embrace it wholeheartedly.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Director John Dahl keeps a firm hand on Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely's razor-sharp hit-man-in-rehab comedy, which mines the same dark vein as "Gross Pointe Blank"(1997) and "Matador"(2005), and the payoff is both slily funny and startlingly fresh.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    This being a Michael Moore film, the filmmaker is as enraging as the subject: His belligerent court-jester shtick wears thin fast and undermines the segments on universal health-care systems in Canada, the U.K., France and Cuba.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    A small slice of a suspended life, intimate and filled with the mundane details most people forget when the waiting is over and their real lives begin.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Charging Albert's film with looking too much like an American chick flick is to give it short shrift: For all the drinking, dancing and group hugs, by the end of their 36-hour trip down memory lane, the women's problems remain unresolved and poisonous secrets are still leaking out.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The devil is in the degrees. Pineyro and Ferrer have a fine old time teasing the viewer with the ongoing search for the corporate mole.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Cheadle and Ejiofor are riveting together; they have the kind of apparently effortless chemistry that makes every scene they share a delight. With a dynamite soundtrack under their feet, the two of them rock the house.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    For all the flash and flutter, the movie overall lacks, well, HEFT.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Urzua's unsentimental story of shattered idealism is specific to Cuba, but anyone whose path to adulthood was paved with disillusionment, -- whether they were betrayed by faith, family or institutions – will understand her melancholy nostalgia.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Best of all, though the Simpson clan is 18 years older, they're not one bit wiser.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Wright's haunting performance is the anchor that keeps Ruscio's film from vanishing down a rabbit hole.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    There's no time wasted and no showy effects to detract from the situation -- just sheer tension.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Weighty and downbeat though that sounds, Delpy's film is delightfully light, especially when it's parsing the infinite variety of horrible French cabbies.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It has a creepy power all its own.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    DiCillo's short, sharp snapshot about celebrity and life on the fringe has nothing new to say, but it says it with considerable charm and affection.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    This good-natured genre piece gets the job done while sneaking in a couple of pointed observations about contemporary Latino immigrant life.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's funny without being toothless, adrenaline turbocharged without being mean and utterly deranged in the best sense of the word.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Though the portentous title is taken from the Old Testament -- Elah is where little David took on Goliath -- the film's concerns are painfully timely and forcefully articulated.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    And if the film's 11th-hour CGI effects aren't entirely convincing, the notion that oil itself is haunted by the restless spirit of every once-living thing that time reduced and mingled into the earth's black blood throws off a primordial chill.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Neither trite nor pandering, and that's what makes the film better than most of its peers.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    If the film ultimately amounts to little more than a middle-aged coming-of-age story, it's richly imagined and filled fanciful touches in keeping with its passionate subject.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Neither Ketchum nor the filmmakers take an exploitative approach to the material; their focus is the way the youngsters' petty cruelty erupts into murderous sadism.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    While Gilroy deploys the occasional exploding car, the film's climax is all words -- angry, carefully sharpened words -- with the stopping power of large-caliber bullets.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Outsourced is a sweet, good-natured surprise that takes the cliches out of an overworked genre and makes them seem almost fresh and entirely charming.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Fans of Lehane's Kenzie-Gennaro books will lament the fact that starting with the fourth book means losing the couple's extensive backstory, but the essence of their fragile, damaged bond comes through even if you don't know what shaped it.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Its vivid sense of place and time make it compulsively watchable, even at a running time of two and a half hours.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    By the time Reilly's shaggy life story winds down, it's hard not to wish he'd been your friend, too.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's a hugely entertaining slice of sunbaked Gothic.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Special kudos to Adams, who nails the distinctive body language of Disney's spunky good girls and manages to make Giselle's relentless optimism seem charming rather than a sign of mental deficiency.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Steeped in what may be the ultimate postmodern irony: Talen's impromptu, defiant piece of performance art with political undertones has actually taken on a spiritual dimension.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The Savages is funny in the if-you-didn't-laugh-you'd-cry way and superbly acted by all involved, including the supporting cast of home-care attendants, nurses, hospital administrators, intake personnel and nursing-home staff.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    De Felitta's portrait of Paris -- who died in June 2004 -- isn't always flattering, but it is genuinely moving on many levels, none of which require knowledge of or even interest in jazz.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Delivers equal parts overwrought tedium and mind-bending beauty, spiked with brilliant throwaway images that more than make up for Kelly's heavy-handed hot-button pretensions.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Diablo and director Jason Reitman never undercut Juno, whom Page brings to a fully rounded life (no pun intended) that verges on the frightening: Her vulnerable center doesn't belie her formidable exterior -- it just makes her more than a sitcom-patter machine.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Ambitious, deeply flawed and studded with sequences that achieve pure, majestic greatness.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's about ordinary people living in the shadow of nagging, day-to-day racism, and about the music that reminds them of what's right with the world rather than what's wrong.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The filmmakers know the tropes of spooky movies: Glowering shadows, squeaking playground equipment, eerie storms and half-glimpsed forms, but the film rests on Rueda's subtle, intense performance, rooted in every half-articulated anxiety that ever gnawed at a parent's brain.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    It's a serious and well-researched consideration of natural childbearing vs. hospital delivery that explores the larger social conditions and assumptions that shape women's choices.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    Portabella has no interest in conventional biography -- it's hard not to suspect that he included the tale of Felix Mendelsson (Daniel Ligorio) discovering the score for the "St. Matthew Passion" wrapping a meat delivery precisely BECAUSE it's probably apocryphal.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 75 Maitland McDonagh
    The film's resolution is both haunting and satisfying.

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