Michael Phillips
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For 1,420 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 58% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 40% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 4.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Michael Phillips' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Fruitvale Station
Lowest review score: 0 What Goes Up
Score distribution:
1,420 movie reviews
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Doesn't provoke bittersweet inquiries regarding one poor actress' grisly fate. Nor does it stir up much provocation on the matter of why, as a popular audience, we're still taken with this lurid symbol of sex and dread and desire. Rather, the movie raises a much simpler question: Huh?
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The film is a fancy-pants muddle in terms of technique. And if Bloom doesn't do something about his smirky tendency to troll for audience approval, his career may be severely limited.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Only the architecturally refined bone structure of Kristin Scott Thomas' face rescues Keeping Mum from full-on tedium.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Levinson has written and directed in many genres. But rarely has he made a film as indecisive and diffident as Man of the Year.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Despite valiant efforts from Czerny and from the fine stage actress Vilma Silva, who plays one of Walsch's many saviors, the result would qualify as a blandly inspirational amateur hour if the running time weren't closer to two.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Writer-director Thom Fitzgerald's ambitious but hopelessly inchoate AIDS drama is actually three separate, sequentially-told stories.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The stalwart American hero of Turistas comes off as a dislikable blank in the hands of Josh Duhamel, of the TV series "Las Vegas." More relaxed is Melissa George, who co-stars as the Aussie.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The Good German is just stiff. When Soderbergh tries one of those patented swoop-in-on-the-diagonal moves at a key dramatic moment, the effect is comic. And at that precise moment, the story starts dying a slow, oxygen-deprived death.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    If the writers had the guts (and the jokes) to fashion a bittersweet comedy with a fully earned happy ending, Unaccompanied Minors probably wouldn't have been made. As is, it's a prefab slapstick-'n'-pathos stew that doesn't taste like anything.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Stranded in this charmless fantasy, Stiller is reduced to his old halting, squirming tricks.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    A mild and static attempt at sincere camp.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Formulaic romantic junk.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Black Snake Moan strikes me as hogwash. It fundamentally does not work; its consciously far-fetched, out-there notions of the things damaged people do in the name of love are reductive and go only so far. It's as if the premise were tethered to a radiator or something.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Calling a sequel Are We Done Yet? is like calling it "Enough Already."
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Ludicrous and overstuffed, it plows through the Big 10 of Biblical plagues.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    A clammy little number that might've been funded by the Department of Homeland Security.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Most of the ingredients for a strong, tough film are there, and they have been sadly botched by a few key collaborators.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The line between cool and cold is a thin one, however. Cool isn't the word for "Thirteen"; it's just smug.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Carell's pal and "Daily Show" colleague Jon Stewart has a cameo as himself, one of a chorus of godless media star non-believers who do not see God's larger plan for Evan. Yes, well. At least "The Daily Show" is funny.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Williams' grimace is starting to look desperate. Then again, no one comes off well in director Ken Kwapis' handling of this greasy screenplay.
    • 16 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The film suggests Lohan probably (allegedly) should've gone after her agent the other night, not the mother of an ex-personal assistant.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It's all very "Scarface"--the De Palma remake of "Scarface," not the Hawks original. In other words, it doesn't feel modern at all. It feels about a generation late and 400 years short.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Freshman Orientation is not incompetently made. Nor is it badly acted. But there’s not a fresh idea in it, and everyone on screen seems to be in a different comedy.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Lapica isn't yet enough of a writer or director (or an actor) to make the dramatic arc unpredictable in any way. It may be effective for some as therapy. It is far less so as cinematic storytelling.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    I find Lars and the Real Girl adorable in the worst way, bailed out only by most every member of its excellent cast.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    All you want from a movie like this, really, is a little brainless fun, and it keeps holding out on you. Everyone looks fatigued. Even Cage’s toupee seems ambivalent about having signed on for a sequel.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Diane Keaton--now there’s a trouper for you. She will not be caught giving less than 110 percent, even in a drab little heist comedy.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    CJ7
    CJ7 is roughly as grating as that “Flubber” remake.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The latest, Untraceable, owes everything to “Lambs,” and to “Se7en,” and to all the “Lambs” and “Se7en” knockoffs made by directors less talented than Jonathan Demme and David Fincher. In addition to being dull, the Portland, Ore. -set Untraceable is a monster hypocrite, wagging its finger at the mass audience’s appetite for strictly regimented, “creative” torture scenarios.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Jumper, the film, goes everywhere and nowhere.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The court scenes are rarely funny, either in the trash talk or the slapstick.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    As generic as its title, College Road Trip feels like a first draft, the one the studio brings to the rewrite team that, in this case, never got hired.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Despite honorable work from Theron, Robb and Stahl, Sleepwalking makes good on its title in a not-so-good way.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Moving slowly these days, Reynolds does less than no acting in this role, and he’s still the best thing in Deal.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Dempsey's pleasant enough, but he hasn't yet learned how to play against a mediocre script's obviousness. Monaghan has, which is gratifying.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The screenplay by Dana Fox (she was one of the rewriters of "27 Dresses") devolves into a series of humiliating pranks that always give the upper narrative hand to the male lead. Talk about depressing. I mean, that's what male screenwriters are for--to unfairly stack the deck against the female leads.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Staggers and wanders and feels far longer than its 85 minutes, and it's best considered a calling card for better things to come.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    After the insufferably dense mermaid mythology of "Lady in the Water," Shyamalan clearly wanted to keep things simple. He whizzed straight past "simple" to simplistic.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The Love Guru”does not bring out Myer's best, and aside from a deft early Bollywood parody, there’s nothing visually to help the fun along.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Not even Smith's charisma can mitigate the chaos that is Hancock.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The film has one objective: to smack its audience in the face with fleeting, competing wows, over and over.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It wanders and putters and follows its main characters around.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The appeal of the film version, such as it is, relates almost entirely to eye-for-an-eye, severed-limb-for-a-limb vengeance, two hours and 41 minutes of it, with just enough solemnity to make anyone who thought "The Dark Knight" was a little gassy think twice about which superhero myth THEY'RE calling gassy.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It's a seriously withholding action comedy, stingy on the wit, charm, jokes, narrative satisfactions and animals with personalities sharp enough for the big screen, either in 2-D or 3-D.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The movie itself is hyperactive and a jumble.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Ritchie, who shoots and cuts everything in RocknRolla like an ad for a particularly greasy brand of fragrance for men, delivers the beatings and killings in his trademark atmosphere of morally weightless flash.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It's rather sweet to think of Filth and Wisdom as Madonna's reconnection to her own boho Manhattan striver self a generation ago, and I did enjoy the last five minutes or so, when the movie essentially stopped and Hutz's band, Gogol Bordello, took over.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    I enjoyed Eliza Dushku's mad poetess, probably for the wrong reasons, but with a project this meager, you take your artful sneers and scenic diversions where you can get them.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Seven Pounds has a heart as big as all outdoors. Unfortunately it's made out of high-fructose bull.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Bride Wars really does not capture the mood of the moment. It comes from a different time, a different planet.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    This material is offensive. The film may end with a straight-faced reassurance that "no actual Torah scrolls were destroyed or damaged in the making of this motion picture," but it's perfectly willing to exploit the Holocaust for cheap, weak thrills.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Feels about 150 years out of date.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Astonishingly, Angels & Demons IS the same sort of lumbering mediocrity.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It's tough to get on board with these monsters. They don't get the banter they--or we--deserve, and the screenwriters lean on wearying stereotypes.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    A coming-of-ager that nearly slaughters you by minute 30 with the relentlessness of its protagonist's voiceovers.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The movie's heart, of course, is with poor addled Mike and his kids, but 17 Again works only fitfully to make the Efron/Perry character worth a story.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Ferrell may well shoulder the blame for Land of the Lost, even if he doesn't deserve it. He did, however, willingly participate in this coarse, sloppy big-screen version of the old Saturday-morning time-warp adventure.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Fox's cleavage is the only camera object that catches Bay's attention for more than a millisecond.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Easy Virtue may be a bauble, as Larita's described at one point, but Coward's examination of hypocrisy demands real skill. The style should suggest "whipped cream with knives," as Stephen Sondheim once described "A Little Night Music." Elliott's film is more like curdled milk with a spork.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    How big a bastard can Woody Allen build a screenplay around and still generate a modicum of audience goodwill? The answer: not this big.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The pacing throughout is languid. Your eye becomes fixated on the hideous 70s wallpaper behind them. If only the story's interstellar narrative developments had the intensity of that wallpaper. Rod Serling might've gotten a great hour out of it (the story, that is, not the wallpaper). It simply is not two hours' worth, no matter how many quantum leaps into the unknown Kelly takes.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    I wish the movie made emotional sense, because it’s all about getting in touch with whatever’s holding you back, but it doesn’t.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It's a serious drag to see how Ritchie has turned Holmes and Dr. Watson into a couple of garden-variety thugs.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Not so much character-driven as character-dragged--against its will.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Numbingly gory when it isn’t just plain numbing.
    • 17 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    There’s nothing wrong with All About Steve that a rewrite couldn’t fix, as long as the rewrite involved a different writer, a different character and a different story.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    This is “True Lies” without the striptease or the Arab-maiming.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The scenery's nice. But once you've said the scenery's nice, you're no longer talking about a movie worth talking about.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The poster’s the funniest thing about the project: Johnson, sporting a pair of fairy wings larger than his forearms, glaring at the camera.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Certain scenes in When in Rome signify nothing less than the death of screen slapstick, but I’m hoping it’s one of those fake-out movie deaths where it’s not really dead, not forever.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The acting's not the problem, and it's a nice thing to find Moore playing a human-scaled human being, with a recognizable human touch. The material has a hint of it too. But only a hint.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    We have to take the sexual tension on faith, as with everything in this formulaic glob of a script.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It may well be a hit, but me, I'm waiting for "Iron Man 2."
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The film is perfectly mediocre, which is heartbreaking, not heartwarming.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    A weak romantic comedy.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    As robust and clever an actor as Cox is, he can't make Jacques any less of a blowhard; Kari's wit simply doesn't come through in English, at least with this script.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The tragedy is that the performance comes to nothing. Nearly everything else in the film is vile.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Knight and Day may well suffice for audiences desperate for the bankable paradox known as the predictable surprise, and willing to overlook a galumphing mediocrity in order to concentrate on matters of dentistry.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    For me, the mechanics or even the (excellent) designs are not enough. Jeunet's archness keeps conventional empathy or engagement at bay, and by design maintains a tone of artificiality.
    • 20 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The Last Airbender (they couldn't use the series' "Avatar" title because another film got there first, without all the bending) is more about marshaling extras and interpolating tons of computer-generated effects and keeping the factions straight. It's a tough sit.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    What could have been a juicy, pulpy noir, based loosely on the real-life 1976 Mustang Ranch love triangle involving Joe and Sally Conforte and Sally's boxer paramour, instead has the dramatic consistency of rice milk.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    A remake for schlemiels, or at least easy marks when it comes to formulaic Hollywood comedy. But the film's peculiar sluggishness and nagging hypocrisy probably won't get in the way of its popularity.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Director Burr Steers milks them dry, like an overeager farmer at milking time, which is a paradox since this is the wettest picture of 2010, what with the sea spray and Efron's tear ducts and the general metaphysical mist.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It's reductive, insanely violent slapstick, but that's the phenomenon in a nutshell.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The choicest dialogue in Burlesque provokes the sort of laughter that other, intentionally funny films only dream of generating.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Aiming for a piece with the raw impact of "Precious," on which he served as executive producer, he (Perry) ends up with 134 minutes of misjudged intensity.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Their (The Brothers Strause) effects are pretty good, on a fairly limited budget. And that's about all you can say for Skyline.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The pathos really are shameless, arriving with killing regularity and false humility.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The sole memorable scene involving a little Focker in Little Fockers, though memorable doesn't mean amusing, involves Ben Stiller's male-nurse character administering a needle full of adrenaline to his dyspeptic and unhappily aroused father-in-law Jack Byrnes, played by Robert De Niro.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    It is, for what it is, a work of considerable care and craft. And it's completely soulless.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Take Me Home Tonight, believe me, you've already seen.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    On the whole, I'd rather be on Pluto, which isn't even a planet.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    An exhaustingly pushy, phallocentric and witlessly smutty spoof of early '80s medieval fantasies such as "Krull" and "The Beastmaster."
    • 65 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Hanna presents the problem of the well-made diversion that is, at its core, repellent.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The wastrel Sparrow ends up both overexploited and underpowered in this fourth outing.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Hangover II is more like a spitball meeting, a series of ideas that might, in theory, be good enough for a sequel, than it is an actual movie.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    Maybe this review is more about me than about Conan O'Brien, but I really couldn't get past the odor of self-congratulation emanating from nearly every scene in Conan O'Brien Can't Stop.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    A work of ineffable soullessness and persistent moral idiocy.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The events of the movie may be a little bit true, or a lot, but hardly any of it plays that way.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 38 Michael Phillips
    The first "H&K" caught people off-guard with its canny idiocy and zigzagging, picaresque treasure hunt premise. By now, there's no catching anyone off-guard with these two, except by way of the most off-color and off-putting means possible.