Sheila Benson
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For 86 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 56% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 42% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 8.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Sheila Benson's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 69
Highest review score: 100 The Grifters
Lowest review score: 10 Coming to America
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 51 out of 86
  2. Negative: 11 out of 86
86 movie reviews
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    You can't roll monstrous boulders straight at audiences any more and have a whole theater-full duck and gasp with fright--and pleasure. We may be plumb gasped out. And although Harrison Ford is still in top form and the movie is truly fun in patches, it's a genre on the wane. [24 May 1989, Calendar, p.6-1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    Although it, too, is gorgeous to look at, this skeletal thriller is as direct and spare as its Mennonites. [08 Feb 1985]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    These and wickedly funny backstage snapshots of moviemaking are the good times of Postcards, but even they can't hide its emotional starvation. [12 Sep 1990, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    Possibly because Stone empathizes so enormously with co-writer Kovic, who came back from Vietnam at the age of 21 paralyzed from the chest down, the director has lost the specificity that made "Platoon" so electrifying. In its place he uses bombast, overkill, bullying. His scenes, and their ironic juxtapositioning, explode like land mines. [20 Dec 1989, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 64 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    For all its mosaic of nice details, Silverado is still a faintly hollow creation-constructed, not torn from the heart. For a generation of kids to whom the Western is a new adventure, there probably will be action and distraction enough to dazzle. Those who need to be deeply stirred by this redoubtable form will still have to wait: Silverado is good but not great. [10 Jul 1985, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    The pace of the direction and-especially-of the screenplay by playwright-television writer John Kostmayer-begins to crawl, weighing down everything. [06 Apr 1990]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 42 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    Everyone who grew up with the full range of the Oz books is deeply in Murch's debt. However, the framework surrounding Return to Oz is dark and, I suspect, terribly frightening for very young children. [21 Jun 1985, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    Heart may be what the movie needs most, but a bit of clarity wouldn't hurt either. Even here in gangsterland, where random characters are cherished and non sequiturs are considered wisecracks, there is a difference between complications and impenetrability, and this plot is a bloody thicket.. [5 Oct 1990, Calendar, p.F-10]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Sheila Benson
    Written with his trademark artfulness, nicely acted and gorgeously pretty, Tequlia Sunrise finally blows away into slick unsubstantiality. [2 Dec 1988, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    For all its good intentions, for the thrillingly staged moments in the film's first quarter-for all the sweeping movement of thousands of people streaming through the streets of Shanghai-and for all its not-inconsiderable craft, the film's grave problem is a lack of central heating: We don't have a single character to warm up to. [09 Dec 1987]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    There's more length than depth to Labyrinth. The Baryshnikov staging of "The Nutcracker" has more to tell about a girl on the edge of young womanhood, with more poignancy and a more palpable sense of transition, than all the technical wizardry Henson and crew have offered so lavishly-and without a single pop song, either. [26 Jun 1986, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    Did you miss "Pretty in Pink," with the glowing Molly Ringwald? No problem. Some Kind of Wonderful, which has the same director -- Howard Deutch -- also has the same story... The real complaint, however, is that Hughes has absolutely nothing new to report -- no fresh perspectives, no gratefully received maturity, nothing added or depleted. [27 Feb 1987]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 78 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    With Manhunter, there seems to be some danger that style has overrun content, leaving behind a vast, chic, well-cast wasteland. [15 Aug 1986]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 79 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    It's strange that in this somber inspection of moral fiber and what causes it to fray, De Palma couldn't have made his hero at least as interesting as his villain, and both of them at least as complicated as they were in life.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    But the climax of "Close Encounters" was breathtaking and the climax of The Abyss is downright embarrassing; in the light of day, its payoff effect looks like a glazed ceramic what's-it your 11-year-old made in crafts class. It's criminal. [9 Aug 1989, Calendar, p.6-1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    The film's greatest asset is Kelly LeBrock, who is triumphant. She may represent souped-up womanhood at its most fanciful but she does so with great warmth and a sharp sense of herself.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Sheila Benson
    Under Australian director George Miller ("Mad Max"), The Witches of Eastwick begins so promisingly. It has such smashing separate moments, so succulent a cast and so interesting a premise that watching it crumble into stomach-turning crudeness and "Poltergeist"-scale special effects is deeply painful.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 40 Sheila Benson
    It's big, cartoonish and empty, with an interesting premise that is underdeveloped and overproduced. [3 July 1985, p.Calendar 6]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 50 Metascore
    • 40 Sheila Benson
    Sanitized for our protection and in the hands of director Adrian Lyne, 9 1/2 Weeks is a swooningly silly cautionary tale about the bad and the beautiful; a pair whose sexual tastes might have surfaced after a night of watching "Bolero" on videocassette. [21 Feb 1986, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 56 Metascore
    • 40 Sheila Benson
    Wall Street wants to be a shrewd piece of movie making, our own insider's tip, but it's tinny and thin and close to moral bankruptcy. As for its veracity, it's probably no closer to Wall Street than "The Bad and the Beautiful" was to the skills of movie making. And it's a lot less fun. [11 Dec 1987, p.1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 46 Metascore
    • 40 Sheila Benson
    In this stately and fairly slavish representation, directed by Richard Attenborough, what pokes through with the pain of a broken bone is how thin the material really is. [12 Dec 1985]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 46 Metascore
    • 40 Sheila Benson
    At all times the wretched high-concept, low-intelligence story contrives to bring everything down to its sudsy level. [22 Nov 1985]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 52 Metascore
    • 40 Sheila Benson
    In all his athletic scenes, leaping through doors, leaping between uptown and downtown trains, leaping on an assortment of villains, Swayze is just fine. It's the movie's big cosmic questions that throw him; for these he's reduced to a look of total stupefaction--not the movie's finest moments. [13 July 1990, Calendar, p.F-1]
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 73 Metascore
    • 40 Sheila Benson
    Unfortunately, director Michael Lehmann's point of view is swivel-mounted: He doesn't have the courage of his cynicism. [31 Mar 1989]
    • Los Angeles Times

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