Scott Foundas
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For 774 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 53% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 45% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 0.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Scott Foundas' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Big Men
Lowest review score: 0 Reasonable Doubt
Score distribution:
774 movie reviews
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    At the end of a decade defined by much bellyaching about "the death of cinema" (including, on occasion, by this critic), Avatar concludes, appropriately enough, with an image of rebirth.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    What he’s (Jonze) ended up with strikes me as one of the most empathic and psychologically acute of all movies about childhood -- a "Wizard of Oz" for the dysfunctional-family era.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    With There Will Be Blood, Paul Thomas Anderson has taken a stab at making The Great American Movie -- and I daresay he’s made one of them.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    DiCaprio harnesses a terrific, buggy intensity reminiscent of "GoodFellas'" hopped-up Henry Hill (Ray Liotta).
    • 68 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    For those of us who prefer to judge Gibson solely in terms of his art, the movie is a virtuosic piece of action cinema -- particularly in its second half...And while there has been no shortage of recent films that decry the horrors of war and man's inhumanity to his fellow man, I know of none other quite this sickeningly powerful.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Politically shrewd, unexpectedly funny yet immaculately tasteful docudrama.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    The deep satisfaction of The Return of the King is in surrendering ourselves to the finale, in letting Jackson's superb storytelling (with due credit to co-screenwriters Fran Walsh and Philippa Boyens) surround us like a blazing campfire tale -- which it does, gloriously.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    It is the highest compliment I can pay Greengrass to say that he is a master of the mundane, the routine and the everyday.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Absolutely exhilarating...Pound for pound, it's more kinetically thrilling than anything Hollywood has produced in years, not least of all because it's real.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 70 Scott Foundas
    Brings a fresh perspective to age-old human dilemmas.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Ensemble casts like this are not easy to come by. Adams is something more than that -- a brilliant young comedian bursting into bloom.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    A brilliant portrait of adventure, activism, obsession and potential madness that ranks among helmer Werner Herzog's strongest work.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Making an altogether impressive big-screen directing debut, Jones exudes quiet control over this full-bodied Western, taking pleasure in his measured pacing, mixing somber authority with flashes of surrealist wit and luxuriating in the magnificent, vanishing vistas of his home state.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    For Denis’ film - which may be her most intricately constructed and intensely beautiful to date - is one that transcends words and stories, a movie to be felt rather than rationalized.
    • 99 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    The result is a brilliant and relentless thriller, painted in Melville's trademark shades of charcoal and midnight blue, marked by daring escapes, unimaginable moments of self-sacrifice and unconscionable acts of betrayal.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Superman Returns is a lush and enthralling piece of adventure storytelling that's both revisionist AND reverential, putting a timely spin on a timeless character without violating his primal appeal.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    I suspect that Death Proof will throw some of its director's admirers for a loop, though it may be the most revealing thing Tarantino has yet done -- a full-throttle expression of a singular artistic temperament disguised, like so many gems of grindhouses yore, as a glittering hunk of trash.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    A stunning work, revisiting controversial events with journalistic objectivity and a meticulous eye for detail.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    di Florio emerges with a serenely powerful, handcrafted film that navigates into a place Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once called "the tangled discords of our nation."
    • 71 Metascore
    • 80 Scott Foundas
    Time of the Wolf is tough medicine, to be sure. Yet, the movie builds to a note of cautious optimism that is as stirring as it is unexpected.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    To see this seamless "reconstruction" - consisting of some 15 entirely new sequences as well as augmentations to 23 others - is to behold a masterpiece revealed.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Fraught with a deep sadness and sense of yearning. Yet, it is also an enormously -- at times, even uproariously -- comedic film, not because it feels any obligation to be "funny" in some contrived, screenwriterly sort of way, but because Coppola has set out to make a movie set to the rhythms of real (rather than reel) life.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    What ultimately makes Before Sunset so special (and maybe the most resonant, least self-conscious “great movie romance” of its era) is its deep-rooted honesty -- the way it takes the bitter with the sweet and somehow leaves us feeling elated.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Watching *Corpus Callosum and marveling at its sprightliness, its joyous, imaginative air, its effortless attenuation to all that is wonderful and horrible and comical about modern technology, makes you want to jump up and shout for joy, too.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Inside Llewyn Davis is a revelatory showcase for Isaac, who sings with an angelic voice and turns a potentially unlikable character into a consistently relatable, unmistakably human presence — a reminder that humility and genius rarely make for comfortable bedfellows.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    A spellbinding, sensationally effective thriller with a complex moral center.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    The movie's sense of immutable desire resonates well after the lights have come up.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Spring Breakers seems to be holding a funhouse mirror up to the face of youth-driven pop culture, leaving us uncertain whether to laugh, recoil in horror, or marvel at its strange beauty. All I knew is I couldn't wait to see it a second time.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Landes's tone is never salacious or exploitative, nor for that matter pandering or sentimental. This is a sui generis work—warm, sporadically funny, deeply human, and altogether beguiling.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Throughout, Payne gently infuses the film’s comic tone with strains of longing and regret, always careful to avoid the maudlin or cheaply sentimental.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Her
    What begins like an arrested adolescent dream soon blossoms into Jonze’s richest and most emotionally mature work to date, burrowing deep into the give and take of relationships, the dawning of middle-aged ennui, and that eternal dilemma shared by both man and machine: the struggle to know one’s own true self.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Rachel Boynton’s extraordinary Big Men should come tagged with a warning: The side effects of global capitalism may include dizziness, nausea and seething outrage.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Miyazaki is at the peak of his visual craftsmanship here, alternating lush, boldly colored rural vistas with epic, crowded urban canvases, soaring aerial perspectives and test flights both majestic and ill-fated.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    So tastefully mounted and brilliantly acted that it wears down even the corset-phobic’s innate resistance to such things.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    The Dardennes once again find a richness of human experience that dwarfs most movies made on an epic canvas.
    • 97 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    Leigh has made another highly personal study of art, commerce and the glacial progress of establishment tastes, built around a lead performance from longtime Leigh collaborator Timothy Spall that’s as majestic as one of Turner’s own swirling sunsets.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Scott Foundas
    James cuts — as in all of his best work — straight to the human heart of the matter, celebrating both the writer and the man, the one inseparable from the other, largely in Ebert’s own words.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Up
    Up emerges as a gentle hymn to adventure of both the soaring, storybook variety and the smaller, less obvious kind -- the perilous, unpredictable and richly rewarding journey of ordinary, everyday life.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    At nearly six hours, pic's extreme length lets Giordana and screenwriters Sandro Petraglia and Stefano Rulli build up a novelistic rhythm, pulling the audience so deeply and forcefully into their story that it becomes like a enveloping dream; when it's over, parting with the characters is truly sweet and sorrowful.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    One of the year's most imaginative and uniquely exciting pieces of cinema.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A great sports drama first and a heart-wrenching triumph-over-adversity weepie almost never.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Zodiac may be the perfect meeting of filmmaker and subject ­-- an obsessive's portrait of obsession that is, finally, a monument to irresolution.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    What's appealing about Bond is precisely its unhip classicism -- its promise of clean, crisp excitement delivered without the interference of whiplash-inducing camera pyrotechnics, attention-deficient editing patterns, gratuitous color tinting and/or ear-splitting rock ballads.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Cronenberg holds up a mirror, but he leaves it up to us to recoil at what we see.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    It is Lynch's most experimental endeavor in the 30 years since "Eraserhead," that it will do nothing to draw new fans to the director's work and that, after two viewings, I cannot wait to see it again.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A small masterpiece of tone and form.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Fiercely intelligent, terrifying and absurdly funny documentary.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Bujalski takes a sledgehammer to the carefully ordered surfaces and dramatic conventions of narrative cinema, favoring instead an unpredictability in which the crosscurrents of quotidian life collide on the screen in a series of brilliantly alive patterns.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Lucas is a major figure, and Revenge of the Sith may be some kind of historic achievement -- the first movie in which it is fully impossible to tell where flesh ends and digital paint begins.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The comic, tragic and monumentally beautiful new film by writer-director Jia Zhangke (Platform).
    • 65 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Scaled like an epic but possessing the narrative simplicity of a fable, The Warrior unfolds over a brisk 85 minutes of screen time, keeping dialogue to a minimum as it celebrates the power of stories told through handcrafted, CGI-free images.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    It's a romantic comedy in which both the romance and the comedy are turned to such muted levels that any lower would require closed captioning.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A superior all-ages adventure pic made by a filmmaker who knows more than a thing or two about the genre.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    It's an unconscionably funny sex farce that, by its end, turns into a tender and honest romance, an acute portrait of loneliness and, believe it or not, a musical. This is a movie Blake Edwards might have made.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Almereyda has crafted an uncannily revealing portrait of a major American artist at work, all the more remarkable for the deceptive casualness with which it unfolds, as if Almereyda had just shown up.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Enormously absorbing.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The result is a glorious low-tech pleasure that may be the most lyrical, phantasmagoric boys' adventure story since Joe Dante's Explorers.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A superb, eye-opening and often absurdly funny deconstruction of the myths and realities of global terrorism that is marked by a balance, broadmindedness and sense of historical perspective so absent from many recent political-themed documentaries.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 80 Scott Foundas
    Isn't for everyone. It seems certain to confound as many viewers as it will inspire. But pic will foster a core critical contingent that will find itself transfixed and, ultimately, deeply moved by the film's ravishing power.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    By not even attempting to follow Sterne to the letter, Winterbottom and Boyce have triumphantly captured his impish creative spirit.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    I urge you to see the ineffably beautiful Three Times however you can, lest you go on thinking that Hou's greatness is merely the supposition of obscurantist critics intent on reserving their highest praise for those films that nobody else can actually see.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Sketches was produced for PBS's American Masters series, but it's in theaters now and deserves to be seen on the largest possible screen.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The Puffy Chair is the funniest, saddest and most emotionally honest "romantic comedy" to come along in years, even if I've yet to encounter many over the age of about 35 who like the film, or even get it.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Snakes was the most exuberantly trashy delight of this summer movie season or last.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    At a time when most American movies, studio made or "independent," seem ever more divorced from anything approximating actual life experience, Half Nelson is so sobering and searingly truthful that watching it feels like being tossed from a calm beach into a raging current.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Like two of the year's other standout American films, Kelly Reichardt's "Old Joy" and Ryan Fleck's "Half Nelson," it's a movie of ideas in which the ideas flow effortlessly out of the material instead of being plastered on top with a heavy cement roller (as in "Crash," "Babel" and "Little Children").
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    For most of its running time, it's an enjoyably unpretentious celebration of the guilty pleasure we can take from a stupid-as-all-get-out car chase or from watching things blow up real good. Then, in its final half hour, Wright and Pegg ratchet up the absurdity tenfold and enter the realm of the sublime.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Zoo
    A breathtakingly original nonfiction work by Seattle-based filmmaker Robinson Devor (whose "Police Beat" was among the highlights of Sundance's 2005 dramatic competition).
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Outside of "Grindhouse," it may be the most bang for your buck to be had in a Los Angeles movie theater this season.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A 90-minute, years-in-the-making comic wind-up machine that begins by mocking its own audience for paying good money to see what it can watch at home for free and proceeds from there through the most wickedly funny arsenal of assaults on big government, organized religion and corporate America this side of "Borat."
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The result is a film marked by eruptions of brutal violence, but also passages of extraordinary tenderness.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The Last Winter won’t win many fans among those who place the saving of union jobs above the repairing of the ozone layer. But this is a horror movie with many inconvenient truths to tell about the ways in which we are willingly destroying our planet.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    It’s the sort of buoyant, all-ages entertainment that Hollywood has been laboring to revive in recent years (most recently with Hairspray) but hasn’t managed to get right until now, and the glue holding it all together is the incomparable Adams (an Oscar nominee for 2005’s Junebug), who gives the kind of blissful screwball performance that seemed to go out of fashion after "I Love Lucy" left the airwaves.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Tim Burton has taken a hallowed classic of the modern musical theater, hemmed in the narrative from well over two hours to well under, cast confessed nonsingers in the principal roles, and somehow managed to make something magical out of it
    • 66 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    In most horror movies, it's a given that we should root for the heroes to make it out alive, but Diary of the Dead isn't nearly so certain, and so it terrifies us all the more.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A mostly superb bit of modern horror from the writer-director-editor previously responsible for the Frankenstein story "No Telling" and the urban vampire pic "Habit."
    • 54 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    For those of us who find Lelouch an unbreakable habit -- the guiltiest of guilty pleasures -- watching And Now Ladies & Gentlemen comes close to sheer moviegoing bliss.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Love it or hate it, Northfork is a cinematic vision (visually and textually) unlike any with which most moviegoers, even arthouse regulars, will be familiar.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Matthew Barney delivers his masterpiece in Cremaster 3, unquestionably the 35-year-old sculptor-performance artist-filmmaker's most linear, most narratively inclined work to date.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A debut of enormous craft, surety and resourcefulness -- a superlative, soul-baring non-fiction work that will generate torrential word-of-mouth among auds lucky enough to catch it.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Scott Foundas
    The movie's tag line, which promises (among other things) “No stereotypes,” is one of those rare cases of truth in advertising. That Brown also happens to have captured some genuinely awesome surf footage -- often the only raison d’être for such films -- feels like a bonus.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Sad, tender, wise and beautiful film... It's a profound tribute to lives lived on the fringes of society -- to the introspective loners who are the most observant chroniclers of our times.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Razor sharp and funny as hell, Incident at Loch Ness is the harpoon hurled into the hot-air balloon of “reality” entertainment.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The film's extraordinary shifts from windswept sorrow (Mahmut watching from a distance as his ex-wife departs Istanbul for a new life in Canada) to deadpan comedy (the cousins' carefully engineered capture of a household rodent) are uniquely, triumphantly their maker's own.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    This richly textured parable feels every inch the work of a master.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The film unfolds at a deliberate pace, with a soundtrack occupied less by dialogue than by the sounds of water flowing and crickets chirping. And if you listen carefully enough, you might just hear the sound of one hand clapping.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Testud, who learned to speak Japanese phonetically for the role, is nothing short of sublime, her expressive face morphing from tear-stained frustration to slaphappy delirium with the speed of lightning flashing across the Tokyo sky.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Simply put, it represents the work of a filmmaker so exhilaratingly in command of his craft that he can, among other things, turn a single image of two people standing next to each other -- fully clothed, their bodies not quite touching -- into one of the most sublimely erotic moments we have ever beheld on the screen.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    There's a kind of rawness on the screen that most movies never approach.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    What dazzles still about David Lynch's Blue Velvet is its total authority: Not a single false gesture. No shock delivered solely for its own sake.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Gibson has made a big, bold, nightmarishly beautiful film not just about the dawn of the Christian faith, but about the awful tendency of human communities (wherever and whenever in the world they may exist) toward self-preservation, intolerance and mob rule.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    It's the director's most complexly ordered film to date - a labyrinth of ids, egos and alter egos waiting around blind corners - and may be the movies' most deliriously inventive narrative spiral since "Adaptation."
    • 54 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    In the post-Columbine era, Koury's film has its finger on something particularly potent.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    A superior example of fearless filmmakers in exactly the right place at the right time.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Three words of advice to those who haven't yet seen it: Run, don't walk. Composed of excerpts from hundreds of locally shot movies past and present -- from grade-A prestige pictures to unrepentant grade-Z schlock -- Los Angeles Plays Itself serves as Andersen's exhaustive but never exhausting attempt to reconcile the myriad identities of the world's moviemaking capital.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    This is classical activist filmmaking of the first order, a movie with the power to turn hearts, change minds and, just maybe, right the wayward course of an entire city.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    This superb debut feature by Korean-American director So Yong Kim seems to be constructed entirely of the ineffable and intangible, those fleeting moments that most movies treat as throwaways.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Markedly grander in scale, although never at the expense of its richly human (and half-human) characters, “Into Darkness” may not boldly go where no “Trek” adventure has gone before, but getting there is such a well-crafted, immensely pleasurable ride that it would be positively Vulcan to nitpick.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    The haunting final image suggests how quickly such stories can be lost...which makes Beyond the Hills, above all else, a powerful and necessary act of reclamation.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Scott Foundas
    Perverse, funny, and ultimately profound.