Stanley Kauffmann
Select another critic »
For 456 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 39% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 58% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 4.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Stanley Kauffmann's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Away from Her
Lowest review score: 0 Hulk
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 44 out of 456
456 movie reviews
    • 99 Metascore
    • 90 Stanley Kauffmann
    One particular bit of luck for this reissue is the fact that Melville's cinematographer, Pierre Lhomme, was on hand to help with the restoration of this thirty-five-year-old film. The result is a paradoxical beauty. Very many of the scenes are in sunlight--Melville avoided such facile stuff as shadows for suspense--yet they are chilly. The seasons vary, but the general effect is of a bright winter day that is freezing.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 70 Stanley Kauffmann
    But the way that this picture has been so widely ravened up and drooled over verges on the disgusting. Pulp Fiction nourishes, abets, cultural slumming. [14 Nov 1994]
    • The New Republic
    • 94 Metascore
    • 80 Stanley Kauffmann
    Whatever the news-linked reasons for its revival, Pontecorvo's film is wonderfully worth seeing, or re-seeing, for its own sake.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 80 Stanley Kauffmann
    Payne's directing is alert, warm, patient. He knows that the surface must keep us interested until we go below it, and his confidence holds us.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Stanley Kauffmann
    Irons, busily offset by Silver, gleefully choreographed by Schroeder, gives the picture its real bravura reason for being. [19 Nov 1990]
    • The New Republic
    • 93 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    And Ben Kingsley--O rare Ben Kingsley!--is the Jewish accountant whom Schindler plucks from a condemned group to run his business and who combines gratitude with disdain, subservience with pride. (Actors who want to study the basis of acting--concentration--should watch Kingsley.) [13 Dec 1993]
    • The New Republic
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Stanley Kauffmann
    Sembène's love of his people and his commitment to the richness that underlies the poverty of their condition have always made his films gems of truth, as they do once again here.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 80 Stanley Kauffmann
    Whatever the virtues of The Queen--and it certainly has them--it simply would not exist without Mirren.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 70 Stanley Kauffmann
    There's a great deal in black America that has yet to reach the screen, and Lee is a prime candidate, in gift and gall, to help fill the gap. [July 3, 1989]
    • The New Republic
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    Leigh, the writer, ties up things somewhat neatly and is a touch homiletic. Leigh, the director of cast and camera, is masterly. [Sept. 30, 1996]
    • The New Republic
    • 90 Metascore
    • 50 Stanley Kauffmann
    Jordan would like us to believe that the three films are stages in a metamorphosis, but the stitching shows… Part Two, explored and expanded, might have made a good film, especially since Davidson gives a quiet, knowledgeable, perfectly poised performance. [14 Dec 1992]
    • The New Republic
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Stanley Kauffmann
    Steven Spielberg's new film begins as a monumental epic; then it diminishes; and, by its finish, is baffling. [August 24, 1998]
    • The New Republic
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    Any film that provides Ian Holm with a large role is off to a good start. The Sweet Hereafter gets off to that start and keeps going. [Dec 8, 1997]
    • The New Republic
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    The result is a peculiar small gem, a true Linklater gem. The verity of the film, rather than any novelty or twist, keeps us fixed.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 70 Stanley Kauffmann
    At least we know this Allen persona, whatever his current name; the other characters, starting from scratch, don't get much past scratch. Although the picture spreads its attention fairly evenly among them, most of them end up as supporting cast because they are only life-size puppets. [Feb 10, 1986]
    • The New Republic
    • 90 Metascore
    • 70 Stanley Kauffmann
    To see the flight captain and co-pilot checking the plane before takeoff, to watch the varied passengers settling into their seats, is more agonizing than watching passengers board the ship in all those "Titanic" films. With United 93 we see these people unknowingly stepping into a history that is still in terrible process. But as a work in (let's call it) the Akhmatova mode, it does not and could not succeed.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 80 Stanley Kauffmann
    A prime candidate for a time capsule, to disclose a century hence the current state of some of our civilization's discontents, including the ability to be convinced that one is telling the truth even when one is lying.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    The Truman Show is a reminder of the Beckett theme. The screenplay by Andrew Niccol starts from something like Beckett's abstraction and reifies it with details of contemporary culture, then moves on into fantasy. [June 29, 1998]
    • The New Republic
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Stanley Kauffmann
    Coppola handles her film with very pleasant economy, with a kind of warm precision. Her father, who was one of this picture's producers, can be as proud of her as we are grateful.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Stanley Kauffmann
    Like some wines, The Best of Youth travels well. From its earliest moments the film is intelligently seen.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Stanley Kauffmann
    Despite the fact that parts of this film remind us of past pictures with comparable themes, the director and his actors make it immediate, gripping.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 50 Stanley Kauffmann
    Scorsese's style, fierce as it is, doesn't accomplish what he clearly expected of it. Often, in many arts, fresh treatment can redeem familiar subjects, but it doesn't happen here. [Oct 22, 1990]
    • The New Republic
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    Gondry's virtuosity lifts the film far past science fiction into cinematic efflorescence. He shows us, more seductively than other directors have done, how freehand use of film can capture the flashes in our minds that slip between words.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 10 Stanley Kauffmann
    An overwrought, hollowly symbolic glob of glutinous nonsense... I haven't seen a sillier film about a woman and a piano since John Huston's "The Unforgiven" (1960), a Western in which Lillian Gish had her piano carried out into the front yard so she could play Mozart to pacify attacking Indians. [13 Dec 1993]
    • The New Republic
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    Overall, the effect is presumably what Eastwood wanted: we are present at a momentous event, not watching a movie.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 40 Stanley Kauffmann
    Brazil doesn't add up to much, not only because its cautionary tales are familiar, but because it has no real point of view, nothing urgent under its facile symbols. And the story winds on and on looking for a finish. Three or four times I reached for my coat prematurely. [17 Feb 1986, p.26]
    • The New Republic
    • 88 Metascore
    • 70 Stanley Kauffmann
    A slight conceptual nudge and Capote would have focused on (as the closing line tells us) its true subject: an American author's success story. That theme is there, all right, but because it is not centered it is repellent, as the film pretends to be an account of the author's descent into collateral agony...With the true theme of fame-hunger fully fashioned, the film would have been a more authentic American epic.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Stanley Kauffmann
    Extraordinary--delicate, seriously disturbing, and lovely.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 80 Stanley Kauffmann
    There is not much progress in the film: actions are repeated and repeated...Yet the film is sustained--and, for the most part, well sustained--by the children.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Stanley Kauffmann
    The brothers have given us another treasure. Once again they have made a drama of redemption, and once again they convince us that it is possible.