For 1,301 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 44% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1.2 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Rick Groen's Scores

  • Movies
Average review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Lowest review score: 0 The Avengers
Score distribution:
1,301 movie reviews
    • 35 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    It's all meant, I suppose, to conjure up cold visions of Terminators and Robocops past, or, in this post-9/11 world, of bin Ladens and Bushes present. If so, conjure at will.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Dumb and Dumber 'n the hood.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    With no help from the dialogue, Kidman doesn't have a clue how to make clueless interesting. Not for lack of trying. Her efforts, which often consist of channelling Elizabeth Montgomery by way of Marilyn Monroe, are painful but insistent.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Meant to be a nodding aside to the film buff, with plenty of in-jokes for the cognoscenti, Crimewave ends up as a random list in dire need of a good file-clerk. [3 July 1987]
    • 34 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Being risibly bad, The Happening is at least worth a laugh. Exactly one laugh, by my reckoning, and completely unintended but no less full-throated for that.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Can't have an American Thanksgiving without a turkey.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    LawAbiding Citizen smells a bit musty these days. Indeed, in an era when the debate has shifted from too little state vigilance to too damn much, this thing seems almost quaint.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 75 Rick Groen
    In truth, what follows is less disturbing than intriguing – to audiences hip to the mechanics of horror flicks, it's rare fun to be fooled, and this one is pretty damned clever.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Sure ain't a movie. Nope, it's a product, pure and very simple and carefully tested to sell to the widest possible market.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Confused, and confusing.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 63 Rick Groen
    No one is likely to mistake Excess Baggage for a great movie, but it is an intriguing piece of pop sociology.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    In your typical subpar Hollywood romcom, there’s only one tedious love story to put up with. Well, Valentine’s Day (such a clever title) does a whole lot better than that: It offers 10 tedious love stories to put up with.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Certainty, then, is the watchword, and you can be certain of three things: There will be plenty of juvenile energy to power the vehicle; there will be a few mild chuckles en route; there will be no reason to remember the ride the instant it ends.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    It’s hard to argue with the title here – Safe Haven, indeed. This is all about safety in the Hollywood workplace. Why make a movie when making a Hallmark-card-with-dialogue is so much less risky?
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    It's all rather wacky and hard to follow or fathom, although maybe that's attributable to Virginia's schizophrenia veering off on its delusional phase.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 63 Rick Groen
    For a novel written nearly 300 years ago by a dour Irish cleric with a mad-on about the material world and a satiric mindset dark enough to flirt with misanthropy, it's amazing how well Gulliver's Travels travels. Even Jack Black can't ruin the thing, although not for lack of trying.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    The children are engaging yet the script and direction are not, which leaves the thing to get all bogged down in its own derivative mechanics.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Joe Pytka does display an occasional nice touch with mood and atmosphere - at its infrequent best, the humor here is almost wry. But his editing is as jumpy as a mare in heat. [19 Aug 1989]
    • 33 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    RV
    Yes, Virginia, there is a poop fairy, which is why studio heads persist in tucking the likes of RV under their pillows, confident they'll awaken Monday morning to find all that brown turned straight to green.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    A sustained if wildly uncoordinated assault on our senses, complementing those feverish jump cuts with a cliché of equally stunning proportions
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    While computer games can boast an abundance of nifty graphics and odious villains and plucky protagonists on long journeys, they're invariably a tad wanting in the cinematic essentials -- you know, stuff like plot and characterization and theme.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    C'mon, in matters of haunted-house inhabitation, settling into an ex-mortuary is like renting above a dentist's office -- ashen faces and ghastly screams come with the territory.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Laugh? Well, once.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    In lieu of a movie, we get a series of car chases rudely interrupted by the occasional smattering of dialogue.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    54
    There are easily 54 reasons to dis 54, but let's start and finish with the obvious: The script plays like a proud offering from the lead hand at the Cliché Factory.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    I confess to a deep uncertainty about whether this can be rightly called a movie. A bunch of scenes, maybe... I confess to a cynical belief that Lola isn't actually a role but just a succession of costume changes.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 75 Rick Groen
    Being Human is just that, and it's a profound delight. [06 May 1994]
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    The tuneful melodies of their favourite band grace the soundtrack, but let's not confuse this with a rock 'n' roll movie -- the music is just the blank canvas awaiting the higher art of the gross-out.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Imagine, if you dare, the outtakes from all those merely bad romantic comedies. Now further imagine that these discarded bits, the stuff that failed to make even the failures, found their way out of the waste bin and into a splicing machine and onto a projector. Do that and you're inching toward a full appreciation of this particular barrel, and the bottom it so brazenly scrapes.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 75 Rick Groen
    UHF
    The laughs just keep rolling as 'Weird Al' makes a movie. Overheard from a still-convulsing woman after a recent screening of Weird Al Yankovic's UHF: "I'm sorry, but that's funny." I'm sorry, but she's right. Yuks you feel obliged to apologize for are yuks nonetheless. And UHF prompts a lot of apologies.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    Watching inept American actors and wishing they were badly dubbed into Japanese isn't any fun at all.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Max Payne, game or movie, has precious little to say.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    Forgettable.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    The only surprise here is the real star of the show, who turns out to be not Halle Berry, not even Bruce Willis, but a flat computer screen in all its hard-driven glory.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Gosh, what to say about House of 1000 Corpses? That it's about 999 too many, for starters. Then again, in a picture where the body count is the whole point and the only purpose, carping about the math rather misses the mark.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Will be construed by the faithful as an embarrassment of riches and by the rest of us as cruel and unusual punishment.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    This isn't a movie so much as a marketing strategy -- a moving poster loosely disguised as a motion picture.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 63 Rick Groen
    In an era when the words "President" and "penis" can occupy the same sentence and prompt nothing but yawns, this picture actually manages to surprise, to startle, yes, to administer a series of small but genuine shocks.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    [Walken's] every minute on screen is filled with that level of jittery invention, and, watching him at play, not even the flintiest temper could resist a wide grin. Envy can surely be a trial, but Saint Christopher is there to ease our troubled journey and see us smilingly home.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    Add them up and the sum has a certain mathematical inevitability: Really annoying characters, really annoying movie.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    A dull, formulaic romance comedy with an ulterior motive and a sly message. Remarkably, the message is this: "Please Re-elect George Bush."
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    I doubt that Lawrence is conscious of this process. Nevertheless, stuck in a dull commercial feature, a very good actor happens upon a new solution to an age-old problem: She improves the script by transcending it, and steals the picture by abandoning it.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 63 Rick Groen
    Damned if Parker hasn't done it again. An intermittently good filmmaker but a consistently bad polemicist, he may well sway opinion here -- but, oops, not in the hoped-for direction.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    A lightweight flick about a heavy-duty subject, A Dark Truth plays like a TV movie back in the days when TV wasn't worth watching.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    Not just bad, but weirdly, fascinatingly bad.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 63 Rick Groen
    The concept is high but everything else is merely fair to middling, one more or less watchable B-movie in megabucks clothing.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    But Keaton is a mistake. He's an actor with an innate sense of irony firmly grounded in the here and now. Even as Batman, skepticism was his forte; true belief falls way outside his range.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Hey, it’s all good clean fun.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Like a tone-deaf singer at a benefit concert, John Q. is a bad movie appearing on behalf of a good cause.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Adam is back to lining his pockets again.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    Somewhere, back in the mists of time, co-writers Eric Bress and J. Mackye Gruber must have flapped their gums in the fond hope of crafting a script; today, that whisper of hot air has swollen into a feature flick that rains down upon us a veritable torrent of inane plot.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    A layabout movie -- not risibly bad, just relentlessly sub-par.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    For the price of a ticket, and 100 minutes of your time, how many laughs are enough to qualify as just compensation? Will four or five do? Let's be generous and count five.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    If laughs are the currency of any comedy, then this one pays minimum wage and, worse, makes you work damn hard even for that pittance.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    As for the locals, they speak like extras from "Fargo," although, on this go-round, that weird Swedish accent has somehow lost its power to amuse.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    Characters already too wicked to be credible start doing stuff simply too stupid to be believed, with no help from a cast way too overmatched to be useful.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    A crashing bore.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    Pretty much what you'd expect -- just another haunted house that happens to float.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Writer/director Gus Van Sant, who's built his reputation on the romantic decadence of "Drugstore Cowboy" and "My Own Private Idaho," completely misses the poetry and the irony of the book. [20 May 1994]
    • 28 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    Valuable life lessons always come at a steep price, and this one is no exception. Sorry, but you'll have to shell out for The Divide and then suffer through its nearly two hours of bloody inanities. Weigh the balance, make your choice.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    It’s just such a shining example of a dull studio comedy.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    The pretty good stuff comes early, when Nic and Ron, weary of wasting women and children, suffer an attack of conscience and desert the Crusades.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 63 Rick Groen
    Far more than most action stars getting on in years, Bruce Willis has aged nicely into the role. Maybe it’s that shaved pate of his, a bullet-head that still looks primed for any chamber.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Neither boring enough to qualify as pornography nor vital enough to generate a controversy.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 12 Rick Groen
    But the best, most irrefutable reason why Sex and the City 2 deserves one-half a shining star. It’s worse than Sex and the City 1, and that alone is a remarkable achievement.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    You might believe that a movie comedy requires no visual rhythm, and that entire scenes -- especially those big set-pieces -- benefit greatly from a shooting style devoid of imagination and unremittingly flat. If so, A Guy Thing is surely your thing. Enjoy.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 12 Rick Groen
    [Pitof's] managed to create an entire digitalized city that has all the allure of an underground parking garage. And his action, it's cluttered; his editing, it's confused. The result: blandness butchered, hamburger chopped, kitty littered.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    A 0-star Comedy that is nonetheless guaranteed to rake in multimillions.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    For all its current political incorrectness, the original film at least attacked hypocrisy; this one practises it.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    View from the Top never gets off the bottom -- comedies don't come much flatter.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    As for Keitel, he pops up in a brief cameo as a housing contractor, with a dump-truck full of sand, the one that De Niro is standing right behind. The pair engage in a heated argument, as they once did so memorably those many years ago, and then the truck dumps that load exactly where you know it must. An esteemed actor gets buried but, what-the-fock, the franchise laughs on.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    It's always rather sad to watch gifted performers stranded in a tepid thriller. You can see them, as professional pretenders, trying to believe that they're creating a character, but the lie is transparent -- all they're really doing is advancing a retarded plot.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    The whole mess turns nuttier by the second. A black comedy, you ask? I wish. There are plenty of laughs here, but nary a one is intentional.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    Basic Instinct 2 is double trouble -- the femme is to die for, the film is to die from.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    In the case of When in Rome, oh to do what the Romans used to do: Toss the bloody thing to the lions.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    A few early laughs scattered around a plot as thin as it is repetitious. There's talent in this picture, both before and behind the camera, but virtually none of it gets on the screen.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    Dragonfly has more plot than a figure-skating competition, and just about as much credibility.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    When a movie ostensibly on a serious subject is so God-awful silly, is it impossible to be offended, or impossible not to be?
    • 24 Metascore
    • 63 Rick Groen
    If physical appearance creates its own class system (in high school and beyond), then Qualls is perfect for this proselytizing role. He has that rarest of movie-star faces -- one that over comes the tyranny of beauty.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    As cinematic flops go, nothing falls quite as hard as a failed black comedy.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 12 Rick Groen
    Consequently, as star vehicles go, Ford Fairlane runs straight over the very guy it's meant to transport. Some will see that as the movie's greatest fault, others as its only virtue. Take your pick, and come out swinging. [13 Jul 1990, p.C1]
    • 24 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    The movie pretty much blows.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    The Love Guru is a comedy like the Leafs are a hockey team.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Here's the title: Couples Retreat. And here's the review: Couples, Retreat. Yep, just find the verb, treat it as a command, and vamoose, unless you harbour an abiding curiosity about how eternally long 100 minutes can feel.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    God forgive me, but I worship the Bad Dialogue Fairy -- he gets me through these endless nights.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    And De Bont's effects are wildly over the top, devoid of the stylish cuts and intriguing angles that enriched the original. In fact, there's so little panache in his destructive action that it begins to seem like a weird act of self-destruction.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Ho, ho, horrible.
    • 20 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Never one to shrink from the challenge of parodying the already parodic, along comes Marlon Wayans to do in A Haunted House what he once did in "Scary Movie." And do it much, much worse.
    • 19 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Frankly, about 20 minutes into this dud, I was rooting for the alien beasties -- their diagnosis seemed dead-on.
    • 19 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    One Star (and only for quoting Knee-Chee).
    • 19 Metascore
    • 50 Rick Groen
    A mundane sitcom with feature pretensions, the kind where the comic "situation" is simply a coat-rack for hanging a rag-tag assortment of inflated sight gags and telegraphed punch lines.
    • 19 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Remember that the director, the renowned Mike Mitchell, is the genius who helmed "Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo," and be sufficiently generous to accept that such a high level of excellence is hard to sustain.
    • 18 Metascore
    • 12 Rick Groen
    You will die at the hands of Zed's unborn son. Shucks, those wicked witches sure had a way of taking the fun out of life. Luckily for scheming kings, sadly for blameless movie-goers, such party-pooping prophecies are now mainly confined to formulaic flicks like The Beastmaster. [23 Aug 1982]
    • 18 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    No less laughable is the ending, where Ritchie neatly reflects today's prevailing attitude -- that audiences can't be trusted to handle a hint of ambiguity, but can live happily with flat-out stupidity.
    • 16 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    There's nothing even mildly intriguing, or remotely galvanizing, about Showgirls.
    • 15 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Is this movie so god-awful bad that it's hilariously good? Can't be bothered deciding. Figure that's an answer in itself.
    • 14 Metascore
    • 38 Rick Groen
    What's up with director John McTiernan? The man has got to get a career of his own -- sponging off the pale leavings of Norman Jewison just won't do.
    • 13 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    Calls itself a movie. It has words and pictures like a movie, and will appear in theatres like a movie, and will damn sure charge admission like a movie. But, truth be told, that's pretty much where the resemblance stops.
    • 12 Metascore
    • 0 Rick Groen
    The incomprehensible leads to the inexplicable which ends in the indecipherable.
    • 12 Metascore
    • 25 Rick Groen
    Quite an artful dissembler. Despite all evidence to the contrary, this clunker has somehow managed to pose as an actual feature movie, the kind that charges full admission and gets hyped on TV and purports to amuse small children and ostensible adults.