For 1,398 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 59% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 39% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 5.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Michael Phillips' Scores

  • Movies
Average review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 The Prisoner or: How I Planned to Kill Tony Blair
Lowest review score: 0 I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell
Score distribution:
1,398 movie reviews
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Behind the camera, Gordon-Levitt shows serious promise.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Despite the movie's limitations, it's very satisfying to watch Louis-Dreyfus and Gandolfini enjoy each other's company on screen, as characters, because it's satisfying to watch them enjoy each other's company as performers.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    It is, however, just about perfect in its wrenching emotion, expressed by an actor clearly up to the challenge of acting in a Paul Greengrass docudrama — which is to say, acting with as little capital-A Acting as possible.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    The film has a quietly relentless quality. Redford is fully engaged and vital. I'll leave it to others to read greatness into All Is Lost. It's enough that it's good.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Enjoy the love in your life, and don't squander it: That's all Curtis is selling here, really. With Gleeson and McAdams at the forefront, About Time has a beguiling pair of rom-com miracle workers helping him close the sale.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    McConaughey is first-rate throughout, on top of every dramatic and blackly comic situation, even when the character isn't on top of anything.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    A far more Tyler Perry-ish mixture of comedy and tragedy than the easygoing "Best Man" was, back in the pre-Perry movie era.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Catching Fire has the bonus of a genuinely charismatic performer at its center. Jennifer Lawrence, now an Oscar winner thanks to "Silver Linings Playbook," emotes like crazy throughout "Catching Fire," but you never catch her acting.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Much of Nebraska is ordinary prose, but the best parts are plain-spoken comic poetry.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    It's entertaining, and following an old Disney tradition Frozen works some old-school magic in its nonhuman characters.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    At its best, Hobbit 2, which carries the subtitle The Desolation of Smaug, invites comparisons to Jackson's "Lord of the Rings" threesome.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Director Hancock knows a few things about directing crowd-pleasing heartwarmers, having made "The Blind Side." This one wouldn't work without Thompson.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Wahlberg remains one of our most reliable and least actorly of movie stars, innately macho but vulnerable enough to seem like a human being caught in an inhuman situation.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Even if you don't entirely buy this version of events, director Ralph Fiennes has given us a speculation that works as drama. It's an elegant bit of goods.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Small as it is, the film itself functions as a catchy, bittersweet waltz. You've heard it before, but the dancers are fun to watch.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    This movie comes at you with an idea or two, as well as every available gun blazing.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    It's an odd film, ultimately rewarding, because it's about an odd venture.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    The movie's fun. And now, thanks to our annual Neeson thriller, spring can come soon.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    A weirdly old-fashioned affair. If it weren't for the explicit sexual encounters, this could be an Ibsen or a Strindberg play, unclothed and unmoored from the late 19th or early 20th century.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    It's not a frenzied head-trip, the way Roman Polanski's "The Tenant" was, nor does the movie have half the energy and nightmarish allure of David Lynch's "Mulholland Drive." It's best taken, I think, as a jape and a wry male-centric fable on transgression and desire.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    The movie does its duty. It's a reliable commodity, delivered efficiently and well, like pizza.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    It's still worth seeing. This ambitious and powerful sphinx, a major force in a particular chunk of recent history, may not give away much. Watching and listening to how he doesn't give it away — that's the known known here.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Twenty minutes in, Hardy notwithstanding, you might be tempted to bail on Locke. Don't.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    One part smart, one part stupid and three parts jokes about body parts, the extremely raunchy Neighbors is a strange success story.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    McCarthy is following well-established story grooves here, but scene to scene, he allows the dialogue to breathe and reveal bits of character along with the more expedient bits of plot advancement.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    I'm not sure Edge of Tomorrow holds much repeat viewing potential among teenage movie consumers, since the movie's a self-repeating entity to begin with. But once is fun.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Be sure to hang around for the closing credits, which imagine all sorts of "Jump Street" sequels to come.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    The film's surprising, enveloping jazz score is often deliberately at odds with Niko's moody outlook.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Occasionally very funny, and moderately funny the rest of the time. In mathematical terms that adds up to pretty funny or "funny enough."
    • 79 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    Whatever audiences think of it, I'd say the latest "Apes" picture is just that: a solid success, sharing many of its predecessor's swift, exciting storytelling and motion-capture technology virtues.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Michael Phillips
    The events are complicated, though not complicated by cheap thrills or easy politics. It's a film of interest rather than throttling suspense. By the end, however, when Bachmann's future depends on a very simple nonviolent series of events, Corbijn's methodical approach pays off. And we care. We care about the protagonist's outcome.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    While Lunacy leaves you with the impression that Svankmajer is more expressive with cutlets than he is with his atypically human-dominated dreamscape, some of the images are doozies.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    100 percent right about our corrupt and hypocritical industry-controlled movie ratings system. Being right, however, doesn't automatically make for a strong documentary. I enjoyed a lot of it. Yet fully half of what's on screen is beside its own point.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Outlandish weddings aren't much of a satiric target, but Confetti isn't really going for satire; mild-mannered japes are more its style.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Though stylistically all over the place, it's not without interest.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    There's a tremendous amount of material here, and the script covers too much of it, often confusingly.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Many, I suspect, will fall for The Prestige and its blend of one-upsmanship and science fiction. I prefer "The Illusionist," the movie that got here first.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film works best when widening its focus to include the Federal Communications Commission's often baffling and hypocritical stances regarding what's OK to say, or show, on TV and radio, and what isn't.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The way director and co-adapter Armfield shoots it, the film's awfully pretty in its grimness, in the way "Leaving Las Vegas" managed to make train-wreck alcoholism more fake-lyrical than grungy.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's fitting that a drama trading in classified information would turn out to be such a cryptic bugger.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Eragon is a bit cheesy, but I rather liked it. It's sincere cheese... The special effects -- which include glowing-eyed heroes and villains, and flights over the mythical land of Alagaesia depicted in "dragon vision" -- are refreshing in their slightly out-of-date air.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    A scenic, well-behaved account of Potter's life and times.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The way Moncrieff has structured The Dead Girl, it's catnip for actors: Divided into five chapters, the script affords juicy roles requiring only a few days' work from each member of its impressive ensemble.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The results are corny beyond measure. Yet there's something sweet about them, in part because there's something sweet about hearing the line "Congratulations! Why didn't you tell me you pledged?" outside the realm of comedy.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Originally titled "Orchestra Seats," Montaigne takes a page from the "Amelie" playbook, without the fancy visuals or magical realism.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Wobbles between its comic and dramatic concerns; even those who buy the film more wholeheartedly than I might consider the overall tone uncertain.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    300
    This is a mixed blessing. For a story replete with open-air combat 300 is strangely claustrophobic. And for a film with lotsa flesh and even more blood, it's light on flesh-and-blood characters.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The results fall short of the grown-up comedy about seven-year itches it could've been, asking the Hamlet-like question: to scratch or not to scratch?
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's a better-than-average gay relationship film, largely because neither plot mechanics nor the same old camp intrude much.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Veber's early stage training serves him well both as an adapter (he wrote the "La Cage aux Folles" screenplay) and as a maker of originals though, truth be told, The Valet isn't especially original.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    You want big wows with this sort of entertainment, and the wows here are medium.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Zoo
    To what degree does Zoo test our limits of tolerance? In the end, not much, which is why Devor's strange, carefully composed objet d'art is a limited achievement.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The best thing in Diggers, besides the close-up of the back end of the Vista Cruiser, is the interplay between Rudd and Tierney. They really do seem like brother and sister, adults yet not entirely grown up.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    By the time Watanabe encounters a holy senile fool in the forest, the film has foregone contemporary urban “King Lear” territory for something a lot closer to the Lifetime Channel.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Dermot Mulroney takes the largest male role, that of the driven ex-soccer star and patriarch of the onscreen family. From certain angles he looks like a Shue too.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Where Surf's Up falls down is in its central relationships. (A few more jokes wouldn't have hurt either).
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Wildly uneven.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Nice. The film itself is more nice than good, but nice isn't the worst trait.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    As is, it's worth seeing, but you may get frustrated at the way Dellal raises provocative questions about ancestry and prejudice, only to lose them in the shuffle of so many mini-portraits of musicians, getting to know each other and each other's foreign yet familiar musical language, on a long 16-city tour.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Cassavetes, who wrote the script, proves her skill with actors in this woozy push-and-pull of slurred compliments and shaky hopes for whatever lies beyond the next day.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The climax of Transformers contains all that is proficient and slick and all that is drecky and soulless in Bay's work.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Rescue Dawn is Herzog's first English-language screenplay, and this is part of its problem: The hushed conversations between prisoners sound only fitfully idiomatic. Also--crucially--Herzog can't find a way to make his own big finish feel authentic, even if things did happen roughly this way.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Watching bear cubs and walrus pups struggling to survive against increasingly tough odds, and on ever-slushier ice shelves, has both its shamelessly manipulative side and its dramatically necessary side, as handled here. This proves one thing: Unlike global warming, some stories really do have two sides.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Moliere transforms into a fuller piece whenever Morante takes center stage.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    By accident or design the film is seriously unbalanced.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Doesn't quite work but is worth seeing anyway.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film is easy to take, though it must be said: It's almost 100 percent blather.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The acting is its chief strength. Russell Crowe brings a cocky charisma to Ben Wade.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The title of The Hunting Party doesn’t evoke much in particular. “War Correspondents Gone WILD!” would be more like it if the film itself--messy, but fairly stimulating--had more of the scamp in its soul.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It’s absorbing. The world came perilously close to losing so many Rembrandts, so many Klimts. The cultural casualties, near and actual, may be dwarfed by the millions slaughtered in the same churn of history. But we are what we create, and when emblems of a civilization are reduced to pawns of wartime, there is no victor.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Near the end, we hear Cobain reveal his disdain for adults who “can’t even pretend, or at least have enough courtesy for their children, to talk to one another civilly.” A painful and unexpected moment.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film is reasonably effective all the same, though Affleck has yet to learn how to conduct each scene like a musical score, paying attention to matters of tempo and dynamics.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Caine and Law may not be playing human beings, but Pinter’s sense of humor is at least more interesting than Shaffer’s. Caine in particular appears to enjoy honing his cold-eyed stare.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Much of this wordplay is clever, though there’s something off with the plotting.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Overstuffed, formulaic but very easy to take.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I enjoyed seeing Joss Ackland as well. The veteran character actor with the world’s lowest voice plays the diamond company chairman, and when he rumbles out orders, it’s like Sensurround never left us.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    All four stories are worthwhile, though together they’re an awful lot for one modest doc to cover. Yu’s integration of cinematic and theatrical elements is uneven, and a bit stiff.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    To be clear: The odds are in favor of you hating it. I hated a lot of it when I saw a barely dry work-in-progress print, 163 minutes long, at the Cannes Film Festival. It’s 19 minutes shorter and better now, though “better” is relative when you’re dealing with a whatzahoozy such as this.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Elegy is a curious example of misplaced good taste.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Too much of the film is a muddle, and it feels like work, not play.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The tunes are so good, you can’t believe the film itself doesn’t amount to more, especially with the rightness of the casting. Still, a few laughs are better than none.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film doesn’t hold together. But it’s the work of a real director, however fantastic his sensibility.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I wish it were truly special instead of an interesting near-miss.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Someday, if we’re all good little boys and girls, the world will hand us a Dr. Seuss film half as wonderful as one of the books. Meantime we have the competent, clinical computer animation and relative inoffensiveness of Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who! to pass the time.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    An estimated 4 million Latinas leave one or more children behind when they travel north to find work. They deserve a more nuanced film, but this one’s often affecting.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It’s uneven and, in many instances, avoidably cheesy.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's gut-grinding, to be sure. But a misjudged degree of cinematic dazzle obscures the outrages at the core of Standard Operating Procedure.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    This script bumps along, good ideas jostling with weak, derivative ones, and Seftel doesn't seem to know which way he wants to handle the material. Also, with Cusack playing yet another soul-fried wiseacre running on emotional autopilot, the piece doesn't have much of an engine.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    A grandly kitschy rendering of Genghis Khan's early years.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Mother of Tears can't rival the David Lynchian otherworldliness of "Suspiria," but at least you know you're in the hands of a director.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Then there's screenwriter Steve Conrad. He's interesting. He likes his protagonists to suffer a little en route to finding a better place, and not in the usual sitcomic ways.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Around the midpoint, Pineapple Express falls apart and keeps falling, and the comedy, spiced with considerable, unevenly effective violence in that first hour, goes out the window, and in comes all the gore and the bone-crunching.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Stupid, predictable and fairly funny.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The way it's shot and cut, it plays like a parody of a car commercial shot in the style of a Bond film.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    This one may be soft and derivative. But the actors establish a groove and stay on-message.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The new film seems a little nervous about the religious content; it's more interested in the swoony bits between Charles and Julia.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's a fairly entertaining bash, with a travelogue vibe established by director Larry Charles ("Borat"). It’s also smug as all hell.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film, which really is sloppy, slips around in terms of tone and goes every which way.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The most interesting thing about this slick but frustrating picture is the way it puts Crowe’s Hoffman at the center of our mixed feelings.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    With an uneven and overstuffed script you appreciate the corner-of-the-mouth comments as delivered by Steve Buscemi.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film should've aimed higher, given all that these people endured to have their story told.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The mordant wit and paradoxical melancholic bounce you find in a great many Eastern European filmmakers informs every joke and rosy sexual encounter in the work of Czech writer-director Jiri Menzel.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's less a western than a loping buddy picture.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The superfast running effects, with Edward dashing up mountains, or rival, evil vampires swooping here and there at amazing speed, look genuinely cheesy, like the guy running the race in the smart-phone ad. I'm surprised Hardwicke and her colleagues couldn't solve this one more effectively. Set pieces such as a vampire baseball game fall flat as well.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Role Models wouldn't be anything without Mintz-Plasse, whose character occasions what may be the cinema's first really funny Marvin Hamlisch joke, and whose camera presence is at once unfailingly modest and distinctive.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The funniest bit in the crude but diverting Soul Men really makes you miss Bernie Mac, who died in August, a few months after completing the picture.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I admired the craft more than I loved the results. But The Tales of Despereaux is still better-than-average animation.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Last Chance Harvey is what it is: a pleasant put-up job, held up by world-class pros.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's a procedural, often absorbing, rarely surprising, about a briefcase bomb and a near-miss. Yet there's no question the film feels dodgy and vague when it comes to the personalities and ideology of the men onscreen.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film is likable. Its messages, many of them Lord-oriented, are all equally heartfelt.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Not bad, not great, a little less pushy and grating than the usual.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The actors are strong, however, and Banks in particular shows some skill and wiles in keeping her rascally stepmother stereotype lively.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    While its globe-trotting itinerary recalls the mad whirl of a "Bourne" picture, nothing about this film's style resembles the second or third "Bourne" outings (which I loved).
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The action beats are so relentless, no sooner does one chase end than another begins.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Katyn will not join Wajda's list of masterworks. In its final flashback, however, when we're taken back to the forest and the details of what really happened, we see what we must see, the clear-eyed way we should see it.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Made with the full cooperation of the Pentagon, Brothers at War makes the war on-screen seem eminently winnable, eminently noble. Rademacher's desire to prove himself to himself, and to his soldier brothers, may stir different reactions among different audience members. And that's as it should be.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Crushingly realistic one minute and melodramatically hokey the next.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The filmmaker's access was impressive, the results moderately entertaining.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    This is the story of a complicated and fraught friendship, and I'm not sure Wright and his collaborators figured out how much Hollywood baloney and how much naturalistic grunge to apply to it.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Despite my McConaughey resistance I got more guilty chuckles from Ghosts of Girlfriends Past than "Failure to Launch" or "Four Christmases."
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's a very small film, undermined by a puttering rhythm and Pinter-worthy pauses in the second half and a resolution neither satisfyingly oblique nor conventionally pleasing.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film's pretty good about saying why so much in the culture encourages a political life in the closet, either tacitly or directly. But even The Advocate had a problem with calling it a brilliantly orchestrated conspiracy.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Since I sort of liked “Step Up 2: The Streets,” I’m not surprised I sort of liked the remake of Fame.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    50 percent good and 50 percent close.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Fairly inventive and exceedingly manic.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Glib and charming in roughly equal measure.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie is slick, predictable and, thanks mainly to Washington's canny underplaying, fairly diverting.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's the knockabout biblical lark Mel Brooks never got around to making.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    9
    Something has gone slightly awry, however, en route from the 11-minute film to the 79-minute edition of 9.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The best thing about the film is Viggo Mortensen’s performance. A stealth talent of many shadings, Mortensen has a way of fitting easily into nearly any period, any milieu.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The result is a Jewish “Death Wish,” to borrow Pauline Kael’s description of “Marathon Man,” amped up to epoch-changing proportions, made by a gentile writer-director with an unlimited appetite for celluloid, right down to its highly flammable properties.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Sloppy, grimy but quick on its feet, which puts it ahead of certain other (“The Hangover”) R-rated comedies (“The Hangover”) we’ve seen this summer (“The Hangover”).
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie slam-jams its overpacked story in a frenetic, needlessly complicated manner. It lacks for nothing in setting and atmosphere but comes up short where it counts: the characters.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    When the story’s twist arrives, you half-expect Twohy to throw in a couple of reels from "Dead Again," plus outtakes from "The Usual Suspects." It’s a lulu; I'm just not sure if it's the sort of lulu that will lead to great word-of-mouth.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    If you have any curiosity at all about how a fellow like George Hamilton became a fellow like George Hamilton, My One and Only answers the question by looking, fondly, at his primary caregiver.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    At its best, this uneven work represents Moore at the peak of his argumentative skills.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I’m flummoxed as to why the movie left me feeling up in the air, as opposed to over the moon. Partly, I think, it’s a matter of how Anderson’s sense of humor rubs up against that of the book’s author, Roald Dahl.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    In its way Campion’s film is a thing of beauty, but its characters’ inner lives must be taken on faith.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    For the film to be truer to the school’s reputation, it would have had to dig a little deeper.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Provides some compensatory satisfactions, thanks mostly to the actors, as they make the most of a series of pencil sketches.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Jim Carrey is good as Scrooge. There’s surprisingly little shtick in his performance.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The kids are magnetic.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Partly real and partly, increasingly, fantastic and outlandish in its wishful thinking.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie is shot and edited like a two-hour trailer for itself. As such, it's not hard to take, but you do tend to wonder when the film itself is going to start.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The script is half-a-fortune at best, and visually the picture is staid. But you stick with it, because it's Williams and because certainly no one since Williams has written this sort of embroidered dialogue.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Youth in Revolt isn't bad -- the cast is too good for it to be bad.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Jackie Chan co-stars in Morita's old role of the humble maintenance man who coaches the Bullied One. The older Chan gets, the simpler and truer he becomes as a performer.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I like its devotion to the drab outskirts of Sin City, and Buscemi's performance is right up his alley without being entirely predictable.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film moves along, in its paradoxically static way, at a pretty fair clip. I look forward to Green's follow-up.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The actors do a lot to dimensionalize the material. Parker's Chavis is especially sharp, creating a man with a subtly burning fuse.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film version stars a wonderful Swedish-Icelandic actress named Noomi Rapace as the hacker and Michael Nyqvist as the reporter. They are excellent and subtle and honest.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Date Night is a product substantially inferior to the material routinely finessed by Carell and Fey, on their respective hit shows, into comic gold.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Gets by for many of the same reasons "Date Night" got by, all of them performance-related.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie is ALL revenge, all the time
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    A movie like this can handle a large character roster, but it helps if the story retains clean lines and a sense of propulsion. Iron Man 2 sags and wanders in its midsection
    • 50 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's sort of fun, certainly more so than the "National Treasure" pictures, as well as less manic (a little less) than the recent "Mummy" films.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    But by not "saying" ANYTHING about the lives behind all the lovely, easygoing footage of infants making their way to their first steps and beyond, Babies feels a tad dodgy (and repetitive) by the hour mark.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Until a leaden third act, it IS reasonably entertaining.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    For the record: Josh Duhamel brings some welcome exuberance to the role of the goofball suitor, Hobart. Like Oh, he's fun to watch. This is something never to be underestimated
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Is the movie itself good? Half-good, I'd say - the second, more openly sentimental half.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The CGI is relentless and what you might call reverse-magical: The more we're hit with stuff, the less wondrous it becomes.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    For a good hour, this is the picture Kevin Smith was trying to make with "Cop Out."
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The second film lingers less determinedly on the degradation of Lisbeth and concentrates more on moving the narrative furniture around. The relationship between the main characters is the glue holding the balsa wood together.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Some actors are dinner. Kevin Kline is dessert, and his comic brio saves the film version of The Extra Man from its limitations.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Around the halfway point it starts getting interesting and the people who put it together are at least working in a realm of reasonable intelligence and wit and respect for the audience.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Noisy, unsubtle, but it gets the job done.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie is a paradox. It's ostentatiously restrained. You cannot say Corbijn lacks rigor. You can, however, say that when a talented director's approach too precisely mirrors the tightly calibrated performance strategy of his leading player, a movie risks stalling out completely.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I love Pete Postlethwaite as a rule, but here - as a murderous florist who pulls all the strings - he overacts his key scene so badly it's as if he did it on a dare. Also, Jon Hamm may rule on "Mad Men," but here he's stuck as a rather dimwitted FBI agent who's two beats behind the action, always.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Has its satisfactions, thanks mainly to a cast skillful enough to finesse what is effectively two films sharing the same screen.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's well-crafted, but I wish the film showed us an additional dimension or two of the central figure, who once said the great challenge in writing, any kind of writing, is "to write the same way you are."
    • 39 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie begins with a tragedy and eases into a more interesting blend of drama and comedy than we've gotten in this genre lately.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    RED
    Red starts repeating itself and spinning its wheels and looking for an ending, well before the ending arrives. The actors have considerable fun with it, though.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's easy to watch.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Larsson's leading characters have less to do in this wrap-up chapter. As Larsson wrote it and screenwriter and exposition-condenser Ulf Rydberg adapted it, it's a rather wobbly blend of courtroom drama and loose ends tied, albeit rather leisurely.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    127 Hours never calms down. You suspect you're only getting half the truth of what this ordeal must've been like.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    If the romantic comedy Morning Glory clicks with audiences, the McAdams factor surely will be the reason why.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Moderately funny though immoderately derivative.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The cast is enjoyable, with Jason Segel (as Gulliver's lil' pal, Horatio) and Emily Blunt (the local princess) a witty cut above for this sort of thing.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie version of that life, directed by Richard J. Lewis, gives the adaptation an earnest go. But the script lacks juice.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The result is a brisk trot through a story that is, at heart, a tough slog.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    For an hour The Rite, as scripted by Michael Petroni, delivers the expected, but with panache.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The Eagle becomes more interesting the further north it travels.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    His (Schwimmer) film deserves some attention for the remarkable performance from Liana Liberato as Annie.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Wilson does amusingly steely work, while Page goes bonkers, giving her gleeful nut job one of the more memorable horselaughs in recent American film history.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Are the results funny? In the margins, yes.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's fun to see that charming underreactor Neve Campbell, looking about 20 minutes older, back as Sidney Prescott.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's too bad Spurlock settles for so little here, beyond the surface gag.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It is a film of many ploooooches, meaning: stake in the chest? Ploooooch goes the sound effect. Yank it out again: ploooooch. Wipe. Rinse. Repeat.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The cast's newcomers mix and mingle with ease with the hardened alums of Disney and Nickelodeon TV series.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Director Jodie Foster's film reasserts the feverish, defiant, often gripping talent of actor Mel Gibson.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The results go only so far. Yet already Ferrell has come a long way as a seriocomic screen presence.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Still, the deadliest single element in this film can be traced not to Bacon's character, but to composer Henry Jackson, whose music seems determined to kill us all with waves of dramatic nothingness.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Just cute enough for some tastes, too cute by half for others.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    If the key performances in Beautiful Boy were any less honest, the film's half-formed suppositions would undo it utterly.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    For some reason I was under the impression Jim Carrey already made his penguin movie. Doesn't it seem like it?
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Timberlake is not afraid to make himself look like an idiot. He is, in fact, already the comic actor Diaz may yet become: a looker who knows how to use his looks to get away with murder.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Unlike a few other well-drilled young actress-singers we could name, such as the one whose name rhymes with "Riley Myrus," Gomez knows how to relax on camera.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Wysocki is a genuine talent, as is Jacobs, but the subject of Terri remains a pleasant blur.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    A Little Help settles for familiar and modest payoffs. It's not much. Yet Fischer clearly relishes the chance to play someone who's a demurely reckless mess.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie ends up being just sharp enough at its peaks to be frustrating in its valleys. But the laughs are there.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Many will find Apollo 18 silly and derivative. It is. Yet it's also a break from the usual hyperbolic, down-your-throat brand of silly and derivative scare movies.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Every time you start resisting, somehow the film makes the sale, again.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film wages an internal battle between its ripely sensual atmosphere and its often stilted pacing and plotting.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Drive begins extremely well and ends in a muddle of ultraviolence, hypocrisy and stylistic preening, which won't be any sort of deterrent for those who like its looks.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The best of Dolphin Tale takes it easy. Led by Connick and Judd, plus the crucially empathetic Gamble and Zuehlsdorff, the cast includes Kris Kristofferson as the seafaring old salt of a grandpa. The acting has a nice, low-pressure vibe, in contrast to the film's high-pressure peril.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film doesn't pretend to be anything other than what it is: a story of one woman overcoming low expectations. Gugino and Burstyn and the young performers playing the young players do likewise.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    There isn't a sophisticated or "adult" perspective to be found in The Rum Diary.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Anonymous is ridiculous, and like Oliver Stone's "JFK" it sells its political conspiracy theories by weight and by volume. But dull, it's not.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I like a lot of the film despite its drawbacks; its violence isn't rote or numbing, and there's a simplicity and elegance to the digital-countdown effect.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Such stalwarts as Judi Dench, Julia Ormond, Toby Jones and Dominic Cooper spice things up as characters of various degrees of familiarity.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    There is a good movie to be made about someone like Brandon, especially with someone like Fassbender, a performer of exceptional technical facility and a fascinating sense of reserve. McQueen's isn't quite it.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Cody would likely acknowledge she's working through her own contradictory feelings toward her protagonist - and that she may have been a draft or two away from shaping those feelings into a terrific black comedy, rather than a pretty interesting one.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Bird has serious promise outside the animation realm; in "Ghost Protocol" he errs, I think, by shoving the camera too close to the bodies in the frame, so that the momentum and spatial relationships become awfully hard to parse.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Take the theatrical flourish away from this story, however, and the story's thinness becomes apparent.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Pap, but easygoing pap with a cast you can live with for a couple of hours.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    If her movie cannot fully resolve the demands of the love story with the horrifying particulars of the context, she's smart and honest enough as a first-time filmmaker to make "Blood and Honey" off-limits for those who prefer easy viewing. Even with a subject such as this.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Wahlberg has the presence, the glower and the laconic line readings to guide us through a mess of pain, painlessly.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The play itself, some felt, was static. The charge I'm afraid will stick to the film version as well. But the acting is considerable compensation.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The Vow is agreeable enough. It may be puddin'-headed but it's not soul-crushing.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Director Espinosa shoots virtually everything in tight but wobbly close-up, and the human and vehicular combat often brakes right at the edge of visual incoherence. Just as often the brakes give out completely.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Schoenaerts is often affecting and just as often scarily intense. The film's intensity, by contrast, beams on and off.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film's occasional toe-dips into real-world politics, sectarian conflict and the horrors of war are demure and unruffling. What's missing is a point of view beyond Hallstrom's interest in making his actors look as attractive as possible.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The Raid is maniacal in its pacing and assault tactics. It's also, absurdly, rated R. Fantastic. I love that a film this gory secured the same Motion Picture Association of America rating as "The King's Speech."
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The Cabin in the Woods is pure mechanics, as if the shadowy Dharma Initiative of "Lost" switched agents and found itself at the center of a brain-bending ensemble drama.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Cohen at his best is both brazen and sly. As is The Dictator.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's pleasant as far as it goes. For all the blithe interaction among the central three performers, however, the material's conventional and predictable.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The interviews are often revealing and funny. And much of the music is tremendous.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    When you see and hear so many fans of so many backgrounds expounding on what "Firework" means to them, you realize that while a song may or may not be for you, it most certainly is for others.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Now comes The Dark Knight Rises, which makes "The Dark Knight" look like "Dora the Explorer" and is more of a 164-minute anxiety disorder than a movie.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The picture, intelligent but mild, has more of a 10-volt hum than a true spark.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie marches in predictable formations as well. But when Biel's rebel pulls over in her hover car and asks Farrell if he'd like a ride, your heart may sing as mine did.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Hedges is a determined romantic and a bit of a saphead. He's also humane.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The comedy works some of the time; the pathos, more so. There's an undertow of grief in 2 Days in New York relating to the passing of Marion's (and Delpy's) mother, who died in 2009.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I just wish Cronenberg hadn't adapted the book on his own. Behind the camera, he does remarkable things, turning Packer's limo into what Cronenberg himself has described as an upscale version of "Das Boot." But the playlets constituting the whole are thick, stubbornly undramatic affairs; the verbiage is lumpy, self-conscious.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's a scramble, marked by the unruly variety of visual strategies Lee prefers.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    This should've been a really good picture, especially with Hillcoat's crack ensemble. Instead it's a stilted battle waged between the material and the interpreters. It's up to you, the thirsty customer, to decide who won.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Even if the film should be retitled "For a Fairly Good Time, Call ..." at least we're not back on the couch with another variation on the same old group of arrested-development young adult males, hanging on to their adolescence with as much determination as their marijuana intake allows.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's more or less a grown-up picture, and not bad at that, though its muted and patient style has both its merits and its drawbacks. Still, as I say: not bad.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The drawback of the film's visual approach, however, is a considerable one. The relentless first-person shooting in End of Watch - figurative and literal - is less about YouTube factuality than it is about Xbox gaming reconfigured for the movies.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    There are times when the facile flimsiness of Hello I Must Be Going threatens to float right off the screen. But Lynskey has her ways of surprising us, even when nothing in the script itself is doing so.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The entire project is carefully wrought in visual terms and more than a little familiar. Sometimes even a well-applied pair of jumper cables can't do the trick.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Once it gets going and commits to its time-worn inspirational formula, it's not half-bad.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Feels different from most recovering-train-wreck stories. The movie is a tidy relaying of a messy situation involving two reasonably functional middle-class LA alcoholics, one of whom gets serious about cleaning up a lot sooner than the other.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie doesn't really work, but it's fascinating in the ways it doesn't. Then again, I enjoyed the spacey insanity of the Wachowskis' "Speed Racer," which they didn't even like in Asia.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I found the first 30 minutes of Wreck-It Ralph a lot of fun, the second and third 30 minutes progressively more routine.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    At its most frantic the cutting and staging here veers perilously close to Baz Luhrmann "Moulin Rouge!" territory for comfort. ... I'd rather have seen Wright's carefully elaborated production on a stage, instead of in a movie partly on a stage.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    I prefer [HBO's Hitchcock biopic] "The Girl," not because of its salaciousness but because it gets at something underneath the great (truly, great) director's skin.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Arnold's interpretation is taciturn, often entirely without dialogue, though it becomes increasingly conventional in its scene structure as it goes and as the actors hand off the key roles. In reality it's a bit of a slog. ... The movie plays like an idea for a 'Wuthering Heights' adaptation.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Extracting three generously proportioned films from Tolkien's books made sense. But turning the relatively slim 1937 volume 'The Hobbit' into a trilogy, peddling seven or eight hours of cine-mythology, suggests a better deal for the producers than for audiences.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The music's the best thing ... But it isn't enough to lift this middlebrow, middleweight and middling project ... above its misjudgments and limitations.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It displays a growing sense of fluidity and craft [from Apatow]. ... But much of the script feels oddly dishonest and dodgy.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    McQuarrie... is a real writer; his banter has snap and bite. His directorial skills are still catching up with his writing skills; the movie loses steam in the final half-hour.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    LUV
    An uneven but strongly acted debut feature from co-writer and director Sheldon Candis.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    For an hour or so, aided by the autumnal glow of Ben Seresin's cinematography, director Hughes maintains a firm handle on the story's turnabouts. Then the script goes a little nuts with coincidence and improbability.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The material settles for amiably familiar observations about the difficulties of growing old and the glories of being surrounded by beautiful music.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Levine has a strong instinct as a packager of moments, ladling on the alt-rock just so before ladling on another ladle's worth.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's junk, and it's excessively violent, which is a given. Approach it as a Stallone movie (which it is) or as a Hill movie (which it is), but it's more interesting as a Hill movie. If it gets this director back into the hard-driving action game, then it will have done its duty.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The results are pretty, and sometimes beautiful. They're also a tad stiff, and the dialogue and voice-over narration sometimes has the ring of a scrupulously faithful adaptation.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Wasikowska is a fine, intriguing actress, though I'm not sure anyone could make actual psychological sense of this woman. Nobody on screen — not Kidman, not Goode, not Wasikowska, not Jacki Weaver as Auntie Gin — seems entirely at home in the chosen (or guessed-at) style.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    As a series of sights, which movies like these are, Oz the Great and Powerful is more like "Oz the Digital and Relentless." Certainly this is true in its final half-hour, which seemed to me to be all explosions.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The best material in the film is the loosest, capturing the perpetually insecure and overcompensating Pineda in his early concerts, leaping, bouncing, careening around as if every moment in every song were an audition for the next moment in the next song.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    There's a good movie in this story. The one that got made is roughly half-good.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    At least there's Cage, who has become an astute voice actor, finding some odd, clever, energetic line readings consistently fresher than The Croods itself.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The script is corny and cliched and goes the way you expect it to go. But those things never stopped any movie from working with an audience.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    42
    Treats its now-mythic Brooklyn Dodger with respect, reverence and love. But who's in there, underneath the mythology?
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    For a while, Trance had me guessing, and more or less hooked. Then the violence, motivations, double-crosses and fantasy/reality tangles became tedious.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The movie struggles to turn the story into a paradoxical easygoing thriller, befitting the age bracket of its key ensemble members.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The first-person remembrances hit you where you live, while everything else (including a bland musical score by John Piscitello) often creates the opposite of the intended effect: It keeps you at arm's length from an extraordinary story.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's not without its payoffs; I enjoyed a lot of it. But overall last year's "Avengers" delivered the bombastic goods more efficiently than this year's Marvel.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    A roughly mixed but interestingly plotted offshoot of "Death of a Salesman."
    • 46 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's quite thin, but at least Black Rock plays its "kills" for more than stupid gamer's diversions.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Won't change your world, but it's attractive and Smith the Elder, lowering his voice to subterranean James Earl Jones levels, delivers a shrewd minimalist performance. His son may get there yet.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Snyder films the violence in Man of Steel the way he films most of the rest of the picture: Like a man chasing tornadoes and not even trying to keep subjects in frame. It's a choice, and not a bad one, necessarily — the Smallville farm scenes, in particular, respond well to the approach — but by the end it's a visually limiting one.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The stakes are high and the excitement's there and the results, as previously stated, are messy but fairly entertaining.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    There's something off in its scenes of Arterton's romantically unlucky loner showing up at Arthur's home, in the rain, distraught. If the movie weren't so determined to placate, you'd think you're in for a daring exploration of an affair between a 30-something emotional cripple and a 70-something sexy beast, unchained at last.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's a reasonably efficient baby sitter, done up in 3-D computer-generated animation of no special distinction. But the first one's weird mixture of James Bond bombast and hyperactive pill-shaped Minions (the protagonist Gru's goggle-clad helpers) had the element of surprise in its favor.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The film's not as good as its cast, but The Way, Way Back has its moments.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Uber-raunchy but pretty interesting as sex comedies go.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The actors — including Patton as Bobby's DEA colleague and sometime fling — cannot act what is not there. But with Washington, Wahlberg, Olmos and Paxton around jockeying for dominance, the standoffs have their moments.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Cameo appearances by everyone from James Franco (as Hugh Hefner, putting the moves on Lovelace at her own premiere) to Hank Azaria (as a film "investor") dot the grimy landscape.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The Butler tells a lot of different stories, some more effectively than others.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's an up-and-down movie, honest one minute and a fraud the next, but you stick with it mainly because of Hahn.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The sequel's not bad; it's not slovenly. Some of the jolts are effectively staged and filmed, and Wan is getting better and better at figuring out what to do with the camera, and maneuvering actors within a shot for maximum suspense, while letting his design collaborators do the rest. But Leigh Whannell's script is a bit of a jumble.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Modest and good-looking, the film starts as dark comedy and ends in pathos. Director Alvarez makes the Oregon scenery a character unto itself.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    It's big, brash and dramatically it goes in circles. The first two may be enough for most people, especially if they're into Formula One racing, to overlook the third.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The acting's strong; in addition to Moretz and Moore, Judy Greer is a welcome presence in the Betty Buckley role of the sympathetic gym instructor. But something's missing from this well-made venture. What's there is more than respectable, while staying this side of surprising.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Stupid but fun.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    A genial "Hangover" for the AARP set, Last Vegas is roughly what you'd expect, or fear, but a little better.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    A bit of a tweener, neither triumph nor disaster, a war-games fantasy with a use-by date of Nov. 22, when the new "Hunger Games" movie comes out.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    So how's this "Thor" sequel? It's fairly entertaining. Same old threats of galaxy annihilation, spiced with fish-out-of-water jokes.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    The Armstrong Lie gets going, and gets pretty good, when Gibney is able to focus on the 2009 Tour de France itself, a race fraught with old rivalries and backstage dramas. It's the movie he set out to make in the beginning, after all. But getting there is tough going.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Whitaker's performance is the rock here. Even when the confrontations and evasions get a little ridiculous, he's neither wholly saint nor sinner, but something like a human being.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Affleck, in particular, finds something fierce and noble in uneven material and in his character's rage. He's not like any other actor in American movies.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Maybe if I liked the first "Anchorman" a little less, I'd like Anchorman 2 a little more. Still, I laughed.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    In a rom-com, there's no rom without the com. Hart and Hall give it their all.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Olsen is pretty good, too, though with her bald-faced, moon-eyed disdain for everyone around her, the material loses some of its tension between repressed surface and roiling underbelly.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    This is digital fake-ism all the way. Audiences bought it the first time; they're likely to buy it a second time.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    When the actors are in cars, the movie's fun. When they get out to argue, or seethe, it's uh-oh time. Happily, director Scott Waugh comes out of the stunt world himself, and there's a refreshing emphasis on actual, theoretically dangerous stunt driving over digital absurdities.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Neither fish nor fowl, neither foul nor inspiring, director and co-writer Darren Aronofsky's strange and often rich new movie Noah has enough actual filmmaking to its name to deserve better handling than a plainly nervous Paramount Pictures has given it.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 63 Michael Phillips
    Vol. II turns into a battle (like most von Trier films) between the filmmaker's baser instincts and his searching ones.