For 838 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 40% higher than the average critic
  • 6% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 9.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Robert Abele's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 53
Highest review score: 100 Neighboring Sounds
Lowest review score: 0 Not Cool
Score distribution:
838 movie reviews
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Robert Abele
    Touches of empathy and self-awareness invariably crystallize the unsettling emotions of revisiting one’s past life.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 50 Robert Abele
    What initially augured a spiky portrait of late-age restlessness recedes into a woefully generic case of shopworn cross-generational uplift, sprinkled with tired wisecracks.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 50 Robert Abele
    When Table 19 tries to be a goofy humiliation comedy, it’s barely engaging. (The pratfalls are numerous and laugh-free.) But when it settles down into something like an indie ensemble about disappointment and the comfort of strangers, Blitz finds a more effortless tone.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 40 Robert Abele
    Rock Dog stays firmly in the realm of the pleasant but unremarkable, an air-guitar effort when a stab at virtuosity might have yielded something more memorable.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Robert Abele
    It’s got some future-world smarts that sporadically elevate it above the junk that dominates this genre, and they help carry it through the routine spatter-and-gore moments and sci-fi clichés.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 20 Robert Abele
    Fist Fight is so ineptly assembled, shoddy-looking and devoid of comic tension or creative lunacy — like a movie comprised of outtakes — that you half-expect the filmmakers not even to deliver a fist fight.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 70 Robert Abele
    John Wick’s world is elegant and vicious, full of slaughter and courtesies and, if “Chapter 2” can’t quite replicate the original’s sense of discovery, its ending still made me wish “Chapter 3” could start right away.
    • 25 Metascore
    • 25 Robert Abele
    Horror films that backstory the audience to death lose all hope of mining what’s eerie and unsettling about the unknown, and Rings is a perfect example: it doesn’t so much spread its familiar myth as dilute it.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 30 Robert Abele
    Moore is primarily known as an actor but this is the third feature he’s directed, and he proves surprisingly unable to get layered performances out of some great actors.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 35 Robert Abele
    It’s as if Haley viewed his star’s strengths — laconic wit, unforced masculinity, polite romanticism — as the only elements needed for a Sam Elliott showcase, rather than as the building blocks from which to mold an original character.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 80 Robert Abele
    Kelly, who is credited with Stacey Miller for the screenplay, is shrewd enough to keep the movie from being a dramatized op-ed piece about betrayal, instead making roiling uncertainty, loneliness and melancholy the marquee emotions.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Robert Abele
    There’s little doubt prison reform needs to address the severe effects of locking up kids for life, but They Call Us Monsters feels like a well-meaning skim rather than an impassioned, expertly reasoned plea for mercy.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 50 Robert Abele
    Without its lead, whose full-throttle portrait is at least a burning flame, Gold wouldn’t work on any level.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Robert Abele
    Though the documentary’s early musings about athletic integrity in general are ultimately usurped by a tale of personal responsibility and nefarious global power, the disruption feels acute and essential.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 70 Robert Abele
    It’s made with campfire-spooky care rather than an abiding need to impress you with his gifts.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Robert Abele
    What’s painfully clear is that all the artfully composed shots, hinky situations and extra conceptual surprises can’t make this Detour all that compelling beyond its crisp artifice.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 0 Robert Abele
    Like a fog that corrupts your ability to be entertained, Top Coat Cash is genre amateurishness that neither thrills nor makes sense.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Robert Abele
    The Ardennes is an odd mixture of glum-chic style and emotional curiosity, a story of brotherly tensions that primarily comes off like a movie posing as a story of brotherly tensions.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 30 Robert Abele
    Title’s command of the material is haphazard, her direction not artful enough to know when expository clunkiness is undercutting the chance to dig into the meat of personalities in deterioration.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 40 Robert Abele
    Instead of a grand lark of fast fists and derring-do, we get a lumbering, choppy voyage of minimal excitement.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 70 Robert Abele
    When I, Daniel Blake regrettably piles it on at the end, it’s Loach growing weary of humanizing details and desperate to shake you up with consequences, didacticism and speechifying. It’s the finger-pointer in him, but as this movie frequently shows in its best moments, he’s still a practiced veteran at open-arms affection for the dignity of the downtrodden.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 70 Robert Abele
    It hasn’t always been easy trying to figure out what’s going through the mind of the 44th president of the United States, but Barry is a satisfyingly curious, honest attempt to make his inner struggle a beautiful part of this groundbreaking statesman’s biography.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 30 Robert Abele
    Cinematic life...is in short supply in this ambitious but leaden cautionary tale, which tries to pep things up with energetic fight scenes in the avatar worlds, but can’t escape the wooden acting and zipless storytelling.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 20 Robert Abele
    The Hollow Point is all hollow, no point.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 30 Robert Abele
    As a big sci-fi entertainment, it hardly feels like a movie about the problems of two emotionally desperate people in a crazy situation, and therein lies the problem.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 Robert Abele
    It’s an invitingly austere movie, designed for both searching believers and curious others. The film can be cinematically rigorous, but it’s never ritualistically flashy.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 40 Robert Abele
    Slick and silly, Sword Master rarely reaches the thrilling heights of the many kinetic twirl-and-slice epics directed by its producer, the legendary Tsui Hark.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Robert Abele
    [A] stunningly assured, darkly gripping first feature.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Robert Abele
    There’s plenty of intelligence and atmosphere in play here.... But the prevailing tone is of pressure applied and nothing released, a genre exercise that plays as educational rather than exhilarating.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 30 Robert Abele
    A busy but witless and stale comedy that rehashes every raunchy gag we expect from R-rated comedies, it also wears its hackneyed sentimentality and cookie-cutter underdog story beats as proudly as adhesive nametags.

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