Michael O'Sullivan
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For 1,052 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Michael O'Sullivan's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 Mr. Nobody
Lowest review score: 0 Lethal Weapon 4
Score distribution:
1,052 movie reviews
    • 48 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Admission is not especially funny. The trailer can’t seem to make up its mind. On the one hand, it looks like a satire of academia. On the other hand, it could be a gentle rom-com. In truth, it’s neither.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    At its core, The Company You Keep is a good, solid thriller about a fugitive trying to clear his name. But it’s a much more interesting movie at the edges.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    As usual, Marling is a pleasure to watch for the psychological complexity and contradictions of her character. This time, the story almost lives up to the performance.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Crystal, 65, and Goodman, 61, are a long time out of college, but they somehow manage to carry off the callowness of youth.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    On one level, The Attack is a mystery, but not the kind you think. It’s obvious from the start who detonated the bomb; the only question is why. It’s a question that probably cannot be answered to the satisfaction of anyone living outside Israel or the occupied territories.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    It’s a story of standing out and blending in, sometimes at the same time.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    It's a gorgeous and, believe it or not, riveting documentary . . . about sheep.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    It’s an informative, if slightly unstructured, narrative, yet it plays more like a horror story.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Whatever your belief system, this much is gospel: Movies like The Conjuring are less about the battle between God and Satan than the battle between the silly and the scary.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Populaire is a mostly delightful and entirely unironic throwback to the kind of film they stopped making about 50 years ago.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    It’s a compelling, even stirring, tale.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Under the direction of George Tillman Jr., these two young performers exercise remarkable restraint, never milking the material for unearned tears.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    It’s as affecting as drama as it is effective as horror. It wrenches, even as it unnerves.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    God Loves Uganda clearly lays the blame for it at the feet of the American evangelical movement. The movie doesn’t really argue its case, preferring to stand back, in quiet outrage, as the representatives of that movement are shown with the match in their hands.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Ender’s Game is more than a parable about bullying, or a disquisition on the concept of the “just war.” It’s also a rousing action film, especially in Imax.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    By the end of this troubling film, the cognitive dissonance that it highlights — between the theoretical glorification of the illegal Mexican drug industry and its actual cost in blood — is jarring. It’s an important film, but Narco Cultura is also maddeningly hard to watch.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    The second part of Peter Jackson’s “The Hobbit” trilogy goes a long way — and at 2 1/2 hours, I do mean long — toward righting the wrongs of the first movie, which was even longer.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    The film is an effective, even heartwarming, tale of one man’s commitment to teaching that playing by the rules is more important than winning.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Tim’s Vermeer makes a convincing case that Vermeer could have painted the way Jenison says he did. It also makes a pretty powerful ancillary point: that some people are both geniuses and geeks.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    The films are highly entertaining and highly disturbing, in the latter case for both the right and the wrong reasons. While admirably delineating moral decay, which eats away at one character like a virus, the movies never really get at the seed of evil.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Elaine Stritch’s strength, along with the film’s, comes from her honesty. She is herself, even when — maybe especially when — she knows she’s being watched.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Director Neil Burger (“Limitless”) has crafted a popcorn flick that’s leaner, more propulsive and more satisfying than the bestseller that inspired it.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    It plays out with all the suspense of a thriller. Assisted by acclaimed editor Walter Murch, Levinson wisely shapes the story not around the hardware, which was plagued by malfunctions and other delays, but around the people tasked with making the LHC run.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Trinca delivers a marvelously unfussy performance, rendering her complex character gradually, along with the effects of the opposing forces that tear at her.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Oculus director Mike Flanagan has crafted a satisfyingly old-fashioned ghost story that, in its evocation of shivery dread, is the most unnerving poltergeist picture since “The Conjuring.”
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    For No Good Reason rambles too much for its own good, compared to more traditional documentaries. The most rewarding parts of the film feature Steadman simply talking about his influences (Picasso, among others) and his youthful goal of changing the world through art.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Fed Up isn’t so much a warning to the ignorant shopper or a tip for the unimaginative chef as it is a rallying cry. It succeeds in firing up the choir. Whether it will convert the complacent is an open question.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Days of Future Past is, in itself, as intoxicating as a shot of adrenaline. It’s what summer movies are meant to be.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    The first half of Cold is tense and suspenseful, albeit in a conventional way; the second half is sickeningly compelling. It’s hard to watch and hard to look away from.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Puenzo has a knack for plumbing the heads and hearts of teenage girls. The director coaxes a mesmerizing, unmannered performance out of Bado, who is making her feature-film debut.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    If you have a shred of idealism left, it’s hard to watch Citizen Koch without a mounting sense of despair and outrage over the influence that money has come to wield over modern elections.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Violette mostly avoids the pitfalls associated with movies about writers by limiting the scenes of Violette scribbling furiously in a notebook.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Dawn of the Planet of the Apes works both as allegory and action-adventure film. The internecine conflict between apes mirrors the troubled history of our own race.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Though the setting is a retreat from the world, where not terribly much happens, within its confines Lorenzo gets an eye-opener about both human frailty and interconnectedness, courtesy of someone even more troubled than he is.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    As the movie makes clear, none of these conditions are reversible. Music isn’t a cure for anything. But it does seem to be a key to unlocking long-closed doors and establishing connections with people who have become, through age or infirmity, imprisoned inside themselves.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Franco’s hand-held camerawork draws the story forward as unfussily as a shepherd leads a sheep, and yet with a kind of ghastly grandeur. This is functional filmmaking more than it is flashy. But there is, at its heart, a single virtuosic performance.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    In addition to “pervert” — which Wojtowicz makes sound like a badge of honor — the film offers many other seemingly contradictory assessments of Wojtowicz, mainly from his own mouth: troll, Goldwater Republican, McCarthy peacenik, crazy man, crook, romantic. He was all of those things and more, as The Dog makes vividly obvious.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Jealousy is less cynical than it sounds. While certainly no love story, this dry-eyed tale feels achingly, maybe even exhilaratingly alive.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Duplass and Moss are so good, and their reactions to the frankly nutty circumstances of the film are so plausible, that the preposterous premise of the story hits home both conceptually and emotionally.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    As incomplete as the narrative is, The Maze Runner delivers on almost every other level.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    The story of The Boxtrolls, in lesser hands, might have turned out only so-so. Under Laika’s loving, labor-intensive touch, it takes on a kind of magic.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Despite the story’s familiarity, its star manages to turn its many tropes into a winning formula.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    The Book of Life may use state-of-the-art animation, but it derives its strength from the wisdom of antiquity. It only looks new, but it’s as old as life (and death) itself.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    As a storyteller, Amalric is a master of manipulation, first leading the audience in one direction and then another. The Blue Room is a hall of mirrors, reflecting every detail but making it hard to know where you stand.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Listen Up Philip makes literary talent seem less like a blessing than a curse.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Rosewater doesn’t hector, nor does it giggle about the issue of press freedom. It’s an impressive and important piece of storytelling.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    The fate of these birds, which, the film tells us, could live into their 40s, becomes as engrossing as many a human drama.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Michael O'Sullivan
    Yes, it features some of the most rapturous footage of calving glaciers and ice floes — alternately freezing and thawing — that you’re likely to have seen (much of it captured on equipment designed and built by the filmmaker). But it is the simple glimpses of ordinary life in an extraordinary place that are the most stirring moments in the film.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Eavesdropping on the glib conversations of witty urbanites can be a pleasant diversion, but after so much volubility, you might find yourself wishing that they would all just shut up and dance.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Genial rather than an affront to good taste. It's also pretty darn funny.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    If anyone can sell the idea of ... some psycho "Sherlock Holmes," it's Samuel L. Jackson.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Satisfies a hunger for the basics: a decent mystery to chew on, a bit of juicy suspense, maybe a plot twist as garnish. The fare is all on the standard menu, but it goes down well just the same.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    The two-hour film never feels a minute too long.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Upon this fine mess shines Janeane Garofalo like a ray of sarcastic sunlight as FBI agent Shelby...With her gift for sweet bile, the sardonic Garofalo makes every second on screen a treasure to be cherished.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    If you saw the French version, well, here it is, in Disney language, with John-Hughes-style slapstick.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    It might make you tense, it might make you nauseous, and its clangorous roar could well give you a migraine headache.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Both wry and sobering, if such a thing is possible. In Jerusalem, apparently, it's inevitable.
    • 14 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    A turbo-charged remake that should alienate no fans of the adrenalized 1975 original.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Much to my surprise and delight, the movie is nothing like its marketing.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    What a shame, therefore, that in its puritanical treatment of the only strong female character, the otherwise politically correct police story is blithely unaware of its own closet misogyny.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Very funny in a way reminiscent of "Babe: Pig in the City."
    • 36 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    An innocent comedic revenge fantasy that somehow manages to be sweet and wickedly satisfying at the same time.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Trenchant and visceral, American History X may not be perfect, but it's a darn sight better than good.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Enriched by a strong and unforced supporting cast, "Bread" nourishes the heart, even if its fairy-tale ending feels tacked on and unnecessary.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Maybe not wonderful, but still pretty darn good.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    The acting of the main cast is uniformly nuanced, and, except for some bad makeup on Mendy's father, the film never looks as low-budget as it must have been.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Offers up the kind of pleasures that only a summer movie can...The cast is good-looking, the soundtrack is loud, the plot is stupid.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Not the sharpest political humor I've ever heard, but it gets my vote for the stupidest fun I've had in a long time.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    An odd and oddly endearing romantic black comedy.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    A thoughtful and surprisingly affecting portrait of a screwed-up man who dared to mess with some powerful people, seen through the eyes of the idealistic kid who chooses to champion his ultimately losing cause.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    In a role that challenges our very notion of morality, Cox comes across as both predatory and fatherly, sometimes at once, in an acting turn as astonishing as it is stomach-turning.
    • Washington Post
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Fitfully amusing comedy from director and one-time sitcom king Garry Marshall, the fantasy is alive and well among little girls of all ages.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Surprisingly brusque yet likable film.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Highly watchable stuff (not to mention listenable, with a relentless but not overly obtrusive hip-hop soundtrack propelling the action).
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    At least it's a pleasant walk, with attractive people and nice conversation
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Delivered with the kind of English aplomb that PBS audiences around the country have come to know and love. It must be the accent.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    When it comes right down to it, the talking animal thing is sort of secondary to what is, at heart, just a simple but perfectly satisfying little story about a boy who wants to keep his dog.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Shakespeare asked, "Or in the heart, or in the head?" It's not a new question by any means, but it's one that is given a fresh and refreshing adult twist by Decena's heady yet steady-handed Dopamine.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Sobering yet faintly optimistic documentary.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Mind you, there's lots to like, if not love, in this London-set, star-studded comedy. Unfortunately, there's a little bit to hate, too.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    54
    An entertaining and surprisingly serious look at the infamous New York discotheque, with a genuine nostalgia for the late '70s and early '80s.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Will probably win over as many fuddy-duddy fathers as fillies with its mixture of sweetness tempered with genial cynicism.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Is Along Came Polly a great film? No, probably not, but it is a very amusing one.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Although the rest of the story plays out with melodramatic predictability, it's timely, not to mention refreshing, to see an affirmation of true love over hot sex, along with a reminder that the two aren't necessarily mutually exclusive.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    What separates Calvin and Eddie from the typical comic hero -- and each "Barbershop" movie from the standard yuk-fest -- is that these folks know how to back up all the hot air with meaningful action.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    By equal measure tragic and hopeful, it is both a love song to escapism and a warm embrace of the real world.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    A parody of B-movies stupid enough -- and yet with just enough brains -- to appeal to the most discriminating fans of the genre.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    A chick flick for guys, with a pH balance in perfect equilibrium between the crass and the sweet.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    A touching documentary on the immigrant experience -- or at least one very tough slice of it.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Gently entertaining tale.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    One rousing, if rote, adventure.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    I will admit that this TV skit stretched out to a filament-thin 83 minutes is idiotic, but I mean that in a good way.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Its egotistical, wishy-washy and otherwise flawed protagonists are no less heroic because they look -- and act -- like you and me. On the contrary, they are more so.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    In the end, it may leave its audience, young and old alike, just as charmed as its bewitched young heroine.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Unlike some of its recent ilk – "Spider-Man," for example – The Punisher is, no disrespect, a thoroughly morose and bilious affair. That is precisely what I like best about it.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Fortunately, Jackson and Spacey have enough sassy wit and crackling intensity between them to keep The Negotiator from becoming hostage to its own inanity.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Corny? Oh, yeah. But it's also reasonably good fun.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Gets most of its juice from listening to groups of people who were students and activists in segregated Clarendon County, S.C., and Prince Edward County, Va., during the years leading up to the case.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    By going back to its origins and dusting itself off, the King Arthur story has proved itself to have a very contemporary resonance.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 70 Michael O'Sullivan
    Admirably restrained melodrama.

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