For 933 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 51% higher than the average critic
  • 5% same as the average critic
  • 44% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 6.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Noel Murray's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 To Be and to Have
Lowest review score: 10 P.S. Your Cat Is Dead!
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 29 out of 933
933 movie reviews
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    When El Bola isn't drawing cheap sentiment from the sight of a bruised and scarred little boy, Mañas raises vexing questions about how and why parents leave lasting impressions on their children, and whether good intentions really matter.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Offers watchable light entertainment, even though the prospect of the most respected national cinema indulging clunky cop-movie stereotypes is, if not scandalous, then at least disappointing.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Moreau is magnetic as the wise-but-neurotic scribe, though the same can't be said of Demarigny, whose timid portrayal of a reverent fanboy sucks the energy out of most of his scenes. Dayan's direction is even more problematic.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    If von Carolsfeld had worked more surprises into her style and presentation, Marion Bridge wouldn't live down to its genre stereotype so readily.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Fast-paced, and entertaining in a soapy way, but plot demands require almost all of the dialogue to be flatly descriptive.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The lack of a splashy style puts the tales of the rescued and their rescuers properly at the center, but whether viewers connect will depend in part on how saturated they are with Holocaust lore.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The writer-director's overthinking on the matter is part of what's wrong with her debut film, which is sensitively shot, deeply felt, and dry as dirt.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Predictable and corny, but to their credit, Cary and Rose strive to make the situation real.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Gloomy Sunday's success in transcending its own clichés and conventionality -- at least until the morose finale -- is due in part to the story's primal romantic pull, aided by attractive actors who either stare longingly into each other's eyes or cavort in states of undress.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Cutesy and slight, but it's also polished and well-lit, and Muyl makes a weeklong hike roll by pleasantly, reducing it to about 80 minutes of screen time.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    As one man's vacation video, it's outstanding, but as a documentary, it lacks verve, stylistically or journalistically.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    A little slow for a crime story, and a little obvious with its anti-capitalism message.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Love Object's plot is reminiscent of Guy Colwell's underground comic-book series "Doll," only Colwell dealt more with sex toys as emblematic of the systematic objectification of women, while Parigi just uses the concept for a bunch of weird shocks, dark laughs, and a fairly repellent twist ending.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    La Vie Promise's style is too slick for the subject matter.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Intended to be shamelessly heart-tugging and even uplifting in an odd way, but it's recommended mainly as an acting showcase.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    For the most part, Fire Dancer presents an energetic mosaic of a displaced culture.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Though its milieu is often ugly and its story fairly soft, You'll Get Over It gets by thanks to its cast. The French film industry has a knack for finding attractive, expressive young actors, and this movie is no exception.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The absence of style can be numbing, but it serves a purpose, positioning the documentary as a public record, not a work of art. As such, the film is eye-opening.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The Take tells a compelling story of courageous, industrious people, but it begs for a second act.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    La Petite Lili isn't conventional or crowd-pleasing enough to appeal to audiences who like their foreign films safely sentimental, but it's also not daring enough for those who expect art to hurt a little.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    As a story, it never develops beyond the routine. Still, the aesthetic philosophizing works as a framework for daring visual experiments.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Kim weaves these clichés into effectively nerve-wracking setpieces, though between the jumps, A Tale Of Two Sisters becomes mired in ponderous melodrama.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    In the end, it all gets to be too stifling. The film looks amazing, and there may be no better way to adapt Darger's work to the screen. But Yu's decision to limit the comments on Darger's enduring appeal keeps the audience locked in his cramped room too long, without a window of context.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Makes effective drama, but ultimately it's just an outrage machine, designed to get the viewer fired up by the sight of warring ideologues preaching to their own.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Someone as attuned as Varda to the quality of an image should know that a flat, disposable medium like video makes images harder to internalize.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Intimate Stories stays doggedly, purposefully minor, in part because director Carlos Sorin and screenwriter Pablo Solarz want to explore the casual interactions of people doing nothing.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Given the complexity of this case and of the Satmar/Zionist feud, the documentary would've benefited from some dryly expert talking heads and a more conventional structure.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Has a free-ranging mood, mixing tragedy and comedy irregularly, but Jeong's film is equally free with genre, and entertains its audience openly before pouring on the astringent.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Looks and sounds better than the average indie film debut.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    If the people in Chrystal are intended to be authentic, why do none of them look like they've ever seen the inside of a Wal-Mart?
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Jacobs focuses almost exclusively on Dobson's theories and mission, which he illustrates by contrasting jaw-dropping images of the sun's surface with people ignoring Dobson's entreaties to "Come look at the sun."
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Has more flavor than leftovers have a right to.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The sensual sex scenes and raw violence of God's Sandbox make it pretty much an exploitation film, and as an exploitation film, it isn't bad.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The documentary is short, vividly shot, and packed with interviews in which desperate young men and women let loose their personal philosophies. In fact, there's so much philosophizing that there's not much time left for rap.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Beautifully shot and crisply edited to emphasize the Mass Games' pageantry, but amid the synchronized blocks of performers, Gordon singles out the cranky coaches and giggling schoolgirls, subtly emphasizing how the individual endures even when she's trying hard not to.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Mostly though, The Goebbels Experiment proves that historical figures have the worst perspective on themselves.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The Piersons are warm, funny people, and most of Reel Paradise shows them comically bickering with each other and laughing at the absurdity of the whole project.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    For people who are Minutemen fans and movie buffs, We Jam Econo is kind of a mixed blessing. Watt and Hurley tell the Minutemen story well, but Irwin relies too much on corroborating interviews from punk vets like Flea and Ian MacKaye, who talk about how great the band was without offering much fresh insight.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Beautifully lit, with some inventive but unobtrusive framing, and the moody jazz score unifies the multiple storylines without overwhelming them. Yet while the movie never goes slack, it never really transcends its good intentions either.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    It'd be great if Rooms For Tourists had a clearer point, or something significant to say about the human condition, but even in spite of its low budget, cruddy look, and modest aspirations, the movie is art of a kind.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Taylor does her cause no real favors by trotting out only the most articulate, most clearly railroaded exonerees. It should be just as chilling to learn that even the shady get screwed.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    It's a straightforward, relatively style-free piece, primarily of interest to those who want to hear Zizek's pronouncements. But what distinguishes the film is Zizek's peculiar self-awareness, which borders on paranoia
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    There’s a matter-of-factness to Israel: A Home Movie that’s disquieting, as it shows the joy and determination of a nation in the making, and the dismayed faces of those elbowed aside.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Nothing Can Hurt Me is frustratingly unfocused, petering out considerably after its first hour.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    All four of the main performances are so strong that they deserve more space to develop and intertwine. Instead, at times, Blood plays like one long “previously on” montage for the series that inspired it.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Marking...does her best to keep it lively, mixing in actual security-camera footage and animated re-creations, along with pieces of old tourist promotions, newsreels, and industrial films. But Smash & Grab’s overall tone is too reserved, given the subject matter.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    This is a small film about a society of castoffs, and while it’s beautifully acted and often moving, it’s also predictable, because it keeps wresting itself into familiar forms.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Philibert allows even those who’ve never heard a second of Radio France to experience what the network is like, on both sides of the speakers.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Red Obsession is informative, and entertainingly so, with its honeyed Russell Crowe narration and sweet tracking shots through sun-dappled vineyards.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Even at its goofiest, Through The Never brings back the communal appeal of those early concert films, which were often just a way for young fans to bond with other young fans over the music of entertainers who seemed to understand what they really wanted.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Dark Touch is meant to touch a nerve, not merely spook. It’s about deeper fears, and realer monsters.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Toad Road is sloppy and under-realized, but it should connect with anyone who’s ever made terrible choices for no good reason.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The movie as a whole has an immediacy that’s appealing even in its weaker second half.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Spinning Plates is a slow starter... But the documentary finds more of a rhythm once it moves beyond generalities and starts getting into particulars.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Taken in the right spirit, The Pervert’s Guide To Ideology is a lot of fun, like watching a movie with a friend, then going out for drinks and talking late into the night. Just don’t expect to get a word in edgewise.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Birth Of The Living Dead excels in Kuhns’ gathering of critics, academics, and filmmakers to analyze how and why the film works so well.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Even though Gondry and Chomsky’s very different sensibilities don’t mesh in such a way that either man’s work gains substantially from the alliance, they’re each such good company individually that Is The Man Who Is Tall Happy? is still entertaining.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Mettler is in no hurry to get to any particular point in The End Of Time. The film leaps from subject to subject—slowly, and somewhat haphazardly.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Some Velvet Morning is absorbing and enraging, sure to spark debate both about its meaning and its method. More importantly, it’s a phenomenal performance piece, with LaBute capturing the incredible gifts of two masters of pretense.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Bogliano provides a steady series of jolts, all the way to an ending that’s twisty but ultimately unsatisfying.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    While the movie isn’t a consistently riveting four hours, Hoogendijk does keep finding images and moments that demystify the museum business while making the art seem all the more magical.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Generation War never becomes great, but it overcomes its stiff start in large part due to its scope.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    7 Boxes is way too simple, but it mostly works, because every twist of the plot and turn of the street leads back to this one kid, who’ll do anything to make enough money to become someone other than himself.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    The main problem with Jodorowsky’s Dune is that a significant amount of what makes Jodorowsky’s work special gets lost in Pavich’s fairly ordinary approach to the documentary form.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    What saves Chinese Puzzle—making it not just tolerable, but likable—is how well Klapisch uses New York. The movie embraces the whole city.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Dormant Beauty always comes back to the difficult decisions that family members have to make for each other, contrasted with the huffiness of outsiders who try to project their own beliefs onto someone else’s business.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Ravenous is misbegotten in multiple ways. It isn’t scary enough to be an effective horror movie, or funny enough to be much of a comedy... But say this for Ravenous: It isn’t generic.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Too much of Ari Folman’s half-animated science-fiction feature The Congress feels just a bit off—but every now and then, the concept, the performances, and Folman’s visual flair combine to produce something extraordinary.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Shawn’s adaptation mostly follows Ibsen’s original text, which is what keeps A Master Builder on the level of a well-meaning but only intermittently electrifying exercise.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    While Murdoch exhibits masterful control in a recording studio, he isn’t a natural-born filmmaker. Much of God Help The Girl feels haphazardly stitched together, with pieces missing or placed in the wrong order, as though Murdoch didn’t get all the footage he needed.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    While Memphis is similar in style and in assurance to the lower-ambition Pavilion, it reaches toward something it can’t fully grasp.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    After establishing the AFFA’s complex, corrupt social structure, Stone and Logan wimp out considerably in the second half of Any Given Sunday, piling on the sports-melodrama clichés.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Hellaware is short enough that its doggedness never gets tedious, but the film’s near-total absence of curveballs exposes either a limited imagination, or a lack of time and money to flesh out the premise.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Simien is clearly a talented, witty writer, with a fantastic sense of character development and dialogue, but he makes a lot of rookie mistakes as a filmmaker, from trying to cover too much ground in one movie to making stylistic choices that render Dear White People visually incomprehensible.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Because the tone is so erratic, it’s hard to know whether its anticlimactic quality is a botch on Araki’s part, or a purposeful bit of genre subversion.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    On Any Sunday: The Next Chapter is doggedly down the middle, mixing sports action with talking-head interviews, set to an eclectic soundtrack of rock and country music. The movie feels scattered, jumping too quickly from subject to subject, with little of the original’s visual poetry.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    There’s a sketchbook quality to La Última Película; it’s like notes for a movie that never really got made. Because the film is stubbornly unpolished, it all but dares viewers to scratch their heads and say they don’t get it.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    While the plot relies too much on generalities, the film as a whole thrives on specifics.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    While La Sapienza is unsatisfying as drama, it’s frequently beautiful just as a tour through architecturally significant Italian buildings. And it’s intellectually engaging as an elaboration of their larger meaning.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    It’s a mash-up of familiar genre elements—too familiar, frankly—given a welcome sense of scope and shading by the location.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    What saves 1001 Grams from being excruciatingly cute is that it does have a clean look and a pleasant tone, and it’s about a subject that’s both unusual and entertaining.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Noel Murray
    Big Game tries a little of everything, but ultimately settles into being a scrappy, lower-budget spin on the Big Dopey Action Movie genre. And as with nearly every stab at the BDAM, the audience’s satisfaction will depend largely on just how dopey they expect it to be.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    It isn't a biography of the legendary photographer, and it's not exactly an essay. Mostly, Bütler fills the screen with Cartier-Bresson's photographs while people explain their greatness.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    Anyone looking for history lessons from Rae's documentary will have to be patient and alert enough to pick through the poetry.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    Like a lot of Gitaï's films, Free Zone is part history, part allegory, and part art. Both the history and art hold their fascinations.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    After the first hour, it's clear the movie isn't going to offer any surprising new insights into messed-up modernity.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    It may be truer to the lives of his amateur cast to watch them engage in mumbly, inarticulate conversations between rounds of failed skate tricks, but it isn't especially cinematic.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    Heading South's gender politics keep the movie from being too simple, since these women's self-indulgence can be read as a kind of unfettered (and even laudable) feminism, instead of just unintentional racism.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    It's no "trip through the dark to appreciate the light." It's a nightmare from start to finish.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    If only Snow Cake had hewed closer to this idea of showing what an adult autist's life and experiences are like, rather than getting caught up in Rickman's rote re-awakening, it could've been as powerful as it strains to be.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    As an expression of from-the-gut anti-war rage, Redacted is admirable, but as art, it's undercooked.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    The film seems even more one-note when compared to the recent indie feature "Chop Shop," which also follows young immigrant hustlers in NYC, yet takes the time to provide a fuller picture of the city and its opportunities. Zalla prefers to wallow in the dead-end, an approach that's initially powerful, then numbing.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    Full Grown Men often becomes as intolerably silly as the twee Amerindies it's reacting to.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    The paltry amount of live performances is a crime. In some ways, Smith singing "Gloria" live would've been all the context anyone would ever need.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    The movie is exciting at times, moving at times, and watchable throughout, but fans of The Germs and L.A. punk may start to pine for what's missing around the time Michele Hicks shows up.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    A respectable enough little ghost story, but it loses a lot of sparkle by being similar to such other guy-talks-to-the-dead thrillers as "The Sixth Sense" and "Ghost Town."
    • 25 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    Most of the last hour of Memorial Day feels like a retread at least, and horribly exploitative at worst.
    • 20 Metascore
    • 58 Noel Murray
    Though The Informers is by no means great--nor wholly true to the vision of Ellis, who co-wrote the screenplay with Nicholas Jarecki--moments sprinkled throughout the film capture Ellis' particular mix of flip yuppie satire and lived-in paranoia better than any big-screen version of his work to date.

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