Michael Rechtshaffen
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For 591 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 59% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 36% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Michael Rechtshaffen's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 57
Highest review score: 100 Charlotte's Web
Lowest review score: 0 I Know Who Killed Me
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 75 out of 591
591 movie reviews
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    This first feature by veteran visual effects supervisor Eric Brevig has its transporting, if benign, charms.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Thanks mainly to his (Jackson) considerable presence, Coach Carter works more effectively than expected.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Curiously, despite the ever-energetic Tony Scott at the throttle, the sleek new edition isn't as transporting as it should have been.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Writer-director Marni Zelnick makes an assured debut, coaxing considerable production value out of her limited budget while weaving in an understated, enlightening conservation message that feels organic to the story.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Boasting two terrific performances by Uma Thurman and Evan Rachel Wood as the adult and teenage versions of the same character.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Ending with neither a bang nor a whimper, the finale falls somewhere in between. It's an improvement over its concurrently shot, babbling predecessor, but it ultimately fails to capture any of that jaw-dropping sense of exhilaration that made the original such a must-see event.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    With his stirring visual sense very much intact here, Salles sets the creepy mood eloquently, but the picture -- ultimately fails to reward all the little shivers with any satisfying jolts.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Whether the con is truly on or the filmmakers have simply taken an awful lot of poetic license where the post-Michael Moore documentary format is concerned, moviegoers certainly have less amusing ways to be bamboozled.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The plot's pretty lame, the dialogue is downright hokey, and the characters are a bore, but somehow Final Destination 3 (an oxymoron if there ever was one) still delivers a certain degree of over-the-top amusement.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Phillippe's tongue seldom ventures far from his cheek in addressing the cult of celebrity, he maintains a nice technical grip on the tension and intensity — at least until things start to unravel toward the end.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Strip away all the flimsy copycat stuff, including the cheesy retro synth score, and what lurks beneath is a perceptive portrait of contemporary thirtysomething relationships, no silly sleuthing required.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Although some of the supporting performances can be a bit choppy, director Schirmer sets an effectively unsettling naturalistic visual tone, bathing all those dark impulses in sunny Indiana daylight.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Unfortunately, where episodes of the series used to take their cue from a question posed by one of Carrie's columns, writer-director Michael Patrick King never finds that focus, and Sex and the City loses its tart edge in the process.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While the end result feels a tad overstuffed at 92 minutes, it's entirely understandable if, after more than half a century of being identified as "that guy," Miller's in no hurry to relinquish the spotlight.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    That butting of heads, as performed by actors as strong and soulful as Craig and Schreiber, lends Defiance an emotional charge, even as the film itself struggles dramatically to find its way out of those woods.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Proves lightly entertaining in spite of its more heartfelt tendencies.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Filmmaker Nicholas Mross takes a straight-ahead, even-handed approach to the controversial payment system.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Uneven but nonetheless emotionally gratifying.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Disney’s Tinker Bell and the Legend of the NeverBeast might not ever be accused of risk-taking, the new adventure does feel a shade or two darker than previous installments.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    No doubt about it, the show's certifiably bizarro, stream-of-consciousness sensibility has made the transition notably intact, which should please its young male fan base.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Although the film has its undeniably immersive, convincing moments, the merging of dramatic re-creations and on-camera "performances" proves less seamlessly executed than those masterfully coordinated land, sea and air missions.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Gretchen Mol delivers a delightfully exuberant lead performance, the film itself seldom goes beyond skin deep.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Emotions run raw in this behind-the-scenes look at drummer Patty Schemel and her drug-fuelled run with the 90s grunge rock band, Hole.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Darling's documentary is garden-variety filmmaking, but it does an effective job in illustrating how years of fiscal crises have forced academia and industry to forge alliances that once would have been considered unlikely.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While screenwriter Howard Himelstein and director Mike Barker have done a workable job of drawing the Wilde social satire out of the drawing room, the film never quite manages to travel at the same buoyant velocity as the acerbic wit.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A fresh, young energetic cast is this wobbly musical comedy's main claim to "Fame."
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Maybe Roth was too busy paying tribute to all his childhood influences to take the necessary steps, but even in this uneasy era of SARS and other airborne horrors, his flesh-eating virus movie never convincingly gets under the skin.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The laughs tend to come in fits and starts, built around individual set pieces rather than being generated organically out of the storytelling.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Saving the day is Harrelson's low-key, rooted performance, adding an unexpected layer of poignancy when things take a decidedly darker turn.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Jamie Foxx finds his funny bone is firmly intact in the effervescent, urban-flavored romantic comedy Breakin' all the Rules.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The movie comes up short on inspiration despite a stellar voice cast that includes James McAvoy and Emily Blunt and a toe-tapping songbook by Elton John and Bernie Taupin.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Michael Keaton and Brendan Fraser turn in a pair of sturdy performances, the film itself proves to be a harder sell, especially because it looks and sounds like Mamet but proves to be a flimsy knockoff.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Unfortunately, the whole seldom adds up to the sum of its illustrious parts, and Jarmusch's trademark deadpan quirks seem to have gotten lost in the translation.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Emerges as a frustrating cop-out.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    After a promising start, this quirky comedy falls flat despite Eckhart's best efforts.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Audiences expecting a good time will instead be rewarded with wildly unsympathetic lead characters and uncomfortably long stretches without a laugh in sight.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Jay Lee's grotesque little horror film makes up for in audacity what it might lack in finesse.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Jackass 3D can never be accused of stinting on its spring-loaded arsenal of projectile bodily fluids, neither does it approach that sublime, laugh-until-it-hurts level of gross-out nirvana that made the first two installments so darned irresistible.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    An often funny if slight satire that's never as edgy as it thinks it is or as sharply focused as it needs to be.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The cheap and cheerful picture has its humorous moments thanks to Steven P. Baer's broad but buoyant script and a supporting cast of character actors who know how to hit a good line home.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While its cast delivers uniformly breezy performances, most everything else about Ramona's move to the multiplex feels unremarkable.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    You'd think the team of Rob Reiner, Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman might have had the right stuff. Alas, their labored efforts fail to lift The Bucket List out of its flatlining state.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    There's seldom a dull moment -- but nor are there any that allow viewers young or old to invest in its elite team of furry characters to any satisfying or lasting degree despite the presence of an energetic voice cast.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Delusions of Guinevere is a savvy if uneven satire.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Awkward comic timing and uneven performances spoil the desired effect.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    This flaccid psychological thriller keeps spoiling its own surprise by constantly signaling the big plot twist.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The Forecaster, a documentary study of the rise and fall of commodities advisor Martin Armstrong, would have paid greater dividends by taking a more impartial approach to its subject.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Bates and co-writer Mark Bruner seem to be going for a satirical tone that falls somewhere between David Lynch and Seth Rogen, but deliberately cheesy effects and a sluggish pace sink the early potential.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The production squeaks by on the visual charm of art director Ian Hastings’ period touches and warm autumnal hues. The voice talent is a decidedly mixed bag.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Attempts to pass itself off as a fast-paced caper picture doubling as a socially conscious apartheid drama but ends up equally unconvincing in both departments.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Travolta has/is a blast in an action-thriller-comedy that otherwise comes up short.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A big fluff ball of a sex farce that's so light and flimsy it's a wonder they were able to thread it through the projector.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Very much bearing the creative imprint of Robert Rodriguez, but directed by Nimrod Antal, the new edition, in its best moments, is an unabashed B-movie that plays like a jacked-up "Twilight Zone" with award-winning actors delivering the pulp-infused dialogue.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    When all is said and done, their Pulitzer-winning photographs prove more potent than this well-intended but frustratingly generic picture.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Directed with aching purpose by Lawrence David Foldes from a script he wrote with Grafton S. Harper, the lavish-looking but hackneyed memory play is small-screen fodder at best.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A technically impressive but talky sci-fi drama that never quite comes to life.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    In the absence of a more conventional storytelling approach, this series of brief, fragmented glimpses of the harsh challenges that shaped Lincoln's early life never allows you to get sufficiently close to its celebrated subject.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A little charm and inventiveness would have gone a long way to tone down some of the picture's more obnoxious impulses.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Though it's nice to see Mendes take a looser, not quite so studied approach to his filmmaking, some stops along the way -- like a detour to visit Burt's suddenly single brother (Paul Schneider) -- feel dramatically off-course.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A backwoods psychological thriller delivered faux-documentary-style, with mixed results.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A tasteful melodrama courtesy of the easy chemistry between its two leads and a generally restrained touch from Tony-winning director George C. Wolfe in his feature debut.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    An often imaginative though less than magical family feature.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    ParaNorman is an amusing but only fitfully involving animated caper.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While it certainly looks swell thanks to director John Moore's striking visuals, the wings of this rebuilt "Phoenix" have been clipped by generic scripting and a short supply of dramatic tension.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Will primarily strike a chord with Latina-skewing audiences with minimal crossover potential.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Heigl is terrific, this uninspired romantic comedy is considerably less so.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Unable to decide whether it wants to be a rambunctious family comedy or a tender romantic comedy, the Dennis Quaid-Rene Russo vehicle strains to be both and ends up falling short of both marks.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The clash of cultures isn't exactly groundbreaking but Qasim "Q" Basir's feature debut is told through the eyes of a young, black American Muslim, a perspective that has rarely been seen.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A darker, grittier creature that, while benefiting considerably from Dion Beebe's HD cinematography, is a frustratingly inert affair -- a long and talky excursion that fails to engage the viewer from the outset.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A beautifully shot (by Oscar-winning cinematographer John Toll) but dramatically empty pursuit picture set in the untamed West.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Screenwriter Victor Hawks' inclusive, all-God's-children message is above reproach, but his lead character is ultimately too good for the movie's own good.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Can't decide what it wants to be when it grows up.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Groundswell Rising is an undeniably passionate but frustratingly one-sided examination of the controversial method of gas extraction.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The storytelling has all the dramatic complexity of a paint-by-numbers set, and you know exactly where all this is headed from the get-go.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Tedious portrait of a troubled Rolling Stone.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Pretty much any sign of creative life gets left out in the cold in Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs, the monotonous, strictly by-the-numbers third edition of the wildly lucrative digitally animated franchise.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While leads Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis are amusingly on point as a pair of mud-slinging contenders for Congress, the platform is a wobbly political satire that flip-flops chaotically between clever and crass, never finding a sturdy comedic footing.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    It might have been inspired by actual events, but End of the Spear is, literally and figuratively, simply too dull to make any impact.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    An awkward mix of proficient 3-D animation, detailed technical recreation and strained storytelling that stalls on takeoff.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While superbly acted, the dramedy plays out like a tepid "Big Chill" at best.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While Shearer admittedly makes an impassioned directorial debut, the film plays out like a data-heavy, extended investigative report with an academic emphasis on scientific findings over portraits of human suffering.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    G
    Despite the updated setting and some on-the-money performances, the sleek if dramatically flimsy results make for a less than great "Gatsby."
    • 35 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The largely uninspired Clone Wars feels landlocked. In the absence of any extensive innovation, the video game-ready results play more like a feature-length promo for the imminent TV series of the same name than a stand-alone event.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    The picture never successfully comes off the written page.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    There's definitely a workable, reality TV-based angle at the core of Last Stop -- something along the lines of "No Reservations" but with scattered human remains instead of Anthony Bourdain.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    A heartfelt but dramatically flat portrait of a couple grappling with one tragedy whose lives are profoundly affected by the outcome of another.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Every bit as vulgar, sophomoric and thoroughly tasteless as 1999's Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo. But what is most annoying is the sequel's capability of inducing laughter even as one hates oneself for so easily succumbing to the total silliness of it all.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    An awkward blend of live action and animation.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    An improvement of sorts over the lifeless 2005 edition.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    It's business as usual at Camp Crystal Lake, with very little in the way of fresh jolts or an innovative visual style that would have really revitalized the hokey franchise.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Billy Crystal and Bette Midler hustle to peddle the threadbare material that makes Andy Fickman's comedy a perfectly tolerable, if uninspired, moviegoing experience.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Hartley's kooky cosmopolitan caper can never be accused of slumming, but the shift from dry, offbeat wit to politically charged drama is a little jarring, to say the least; it's a bit like taking in Woody Allen's "Annie Hall" and having it morph mid-way through into "Shadows and Fog."
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Director Tim Johnson (DreamWorks’ Antz) and writing team of Tom J. Astle and Matt Ember (Epic), keep the momentum humming and the amusing bits reasonably entertaining, but they can’t vanquish the prevailing feeling of deja vu, and that the Boov are merely Minions of a different hue.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Less horrific than it is horribly didactic.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Never achieves the propulsive traction and outrageous/endearing balance that made "The Hangover" such a smash this time last year.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    Although the performances are uniformly on point and the dialogue is tartly British, the film ultimately fails to earn its riotous stripes.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    This portrait of strong, independent women grappling with change in their individual lives holds initial allure, but the effect proves ephemeral.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    While several members of the cast valiantly fill the void where they can, these fish out of water could have made a greater high-definition splash if they had been thrown an occasional line or two rather than counting on inspiration to wash over them.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    After a promisingly tart start, the strident satire stumbles and falls into a sitcom-y hole from which it never emerges, despite the game efforts of its dynamic ensemble.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Michael Rechtshaffen
    In Arnold's absence, an important ingredient of the "Terminator" iconography -- namely, the fun factor -- is in short supply.

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