For 415 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 65% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 34% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 9.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Stephanie Zacharek's Scores

  • Movies
Average review score: 68
Highest review score: 100 Boyhood
Lowest review score: 10 Oldboy
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 20 out of 415
415 movie reviews
    • 85 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    The economics of star casting aside, what would Take Shelter have been like with James McAvoy or Mark Wahlberg or Jake Gyllenhaal at its center?
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    The picture's finale isn't as smart as it ought to be. Cornish tries to make a damning social statement, but the only thing you take away from the movie is how cool it is to kick alien ass.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    Sleeping Beauty is best experienced as a piece of fragmented poetry rather than a strict ideological tract.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    Is it entertainment? Is it satire? Is it art? It's probably a little of all three, and yet ultimately not quite enough of any.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    Naranjo keeps the action tense but understated; instead of allowing explosions and shootouts to pile up, he rations them in taut doses.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    To Rome with Love - rangy, vaguely ridiculous and trepidatiously optimistic - is Allen's film for tomorrow.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    What Cedar captures here is the way a father and son can be bound so tightly they almost choke the air out of one another. You can't exactly call it affection; it's that far more complicated thing we call kinship.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Stephanie Zacharek
    Rather than rushing to determine the cause of death – of love, or of a country -- it stubbornly keeps listening for a heartbeat, even though there may not be one.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    At times Jonah Hex carries whispery echoes of The Searchers and Sam Peckinpah.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    The funniest bits in the movie are, by and large, the small, offhanded gags stuffed into the corners.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    The problem is that just as we’re getting to know these characters as people, the movie pulls a veil over them: It loses its nerve and mutates into an only mildly compelling crime drama, albeit one whose protagonist is maybe more tortured than usual.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Debra Granik's Winter's Bone is one of those movies -- like last year's inner-city down-a-thon, "Precious" -- that can't quite make a distinction between profundity and plain old bleakness.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    The picture is well-crafted; it just doesn't breathe.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Barney's Version is too much of a sprawl to have much of a lasting emotional effect.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    The idea, in the end, is that even lovable loonies can do a lot of damage.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Nothing says "Awards Season" like feel-bad cinema, and with Biutiful, Iñárritu hauls out the big guns. He also, maddeningly, has one hell of a weapon in his star, Javier Bardem.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    The picture is so fluttering and tender, so guileless, that you almost can't believe it was made by an old hand like Van Sant. Then again, maybe you can.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    A small movie with modest ambitions, and accordingly, it packs only a modest emotional punch.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    It's all just too cute for words, and more's the pity. Because in the end, No Strings Attached is more meaningful for what it does rather than for what it says along the way.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Thus ends one of the most understated shark-attack sequences, ever; it's almost Bressonian, except it's not boring.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Cold Weather is partly a movie with an actual plot, not just a portrait of young twentysomethings adrift in unfulfilling circumstances.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    So while X-Men: First Class at first takes its source material with just the right amount of self-deprecating seriousness, it founders in the second half, when it becomes overburdened with squirrelly plot mechanics and an excess of self-evident dialogue.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Foster's performance is crisp and forthright and surprisingly moving. There's something affecting about watching this disciplined, no-nonsense actress deliver her lines to a hand puppet - she's always game, if not exactly relaxed.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Probably not as good as you hoped or as bad as you feared.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    The whole enterprise is surprisingly painless, albeit in an icy-cool, numbed-out way.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Bay doesn't care about your soul, he just wants your money - but he at least makes sure you go home feeling exhausted and spent rather than vaguely dissatisfied. It's a fair exchange.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    It goes through all the motions, properly and efficiently, and yet it's missing some core warmth. Watching Real Steel, I kept thinking of Brad Bird's retro-modern cartoon "The Iron Giant," and of how that picture humanized a metal alien so effortlessly.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Aside from having murder on their minds, these three are a lot more well-behaved than the "Hangover" guys.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    Tower Heist is overstuffed with actors, and yet Ratner manages to give each of them one or two good moments.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 70 Stephanie Zacharek
    For now, 21 Jump Street is a small puff of fresh air simply because it's not, like umpteen other releases coming down the pike, based on a comic-book series.