Stephen Holden
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For 2,015 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 47% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Stephen Holden's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 58
Highest review score: 100 Stand Clear of the Closing Doors
Lowest review score: 0 Bio-Dome
Score distribution:
2,015 movie reviews
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    Once again, the lesson that more is not necessarily better, something rarely learned by blockbuster sequels, is forgotten.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    A kind of apocalyptic 21st-century "Ordinary People," Beautiful Boy, directed by Shawn Ku from a screenplay he wrote with Michael Armbruster, is so high-mindedly determined to avoid sensationalism that it sidesteps critical dramatic content and sabotages its own ambitions.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Holden
    The semi-improvised performances, which seem so natural that it is tempting to confuse the actors with their characters, bring Baghead into the realm of group therapy observed through one-way glass.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    It is best appreciated as an immersion in a three-dimensional toyland outfitted with enough whimsical gadgetry to fill a thousand playrooms.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    Although the film, with its home movies and family reminiscences, portrays him as a heroic crusader for justice, it is by no means a hagiography of a man who earned widespread contempt late in his career for defending pariahs.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    This visually stylish work, with its vintage glamour photos, film and television clips, and snippets from a 1951 B-movie, "Racket Girls," is more of a scrapbook than a coherent history of the sport during its rough-and-tumble infancy.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    What saves Train of Life from sinking into sudsy Holocaust kitsch is its sustained comic buoyancy.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    Ultimately, A Silent Love transcends its problem-play situation to ponder how the best laid plans for an arranged marriage are no match against the vicissitudes of passion in a romantically besotted culture.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Holden
    Despite the movie's considerable visual splendor, the pacing of Warriors of the Rainbow is clumsy, its battle scenes chaotic and its computer effects (especially of a fire that ravages the Seediq hunting forest) cheesy.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Holden
    This proudly old-fashioned movie will pull any trick in the book to hold your attention. And it needs those tricks: Damien Chazelle’s screenplay is sloppy, ludicrous and ultimately devoid of suspense.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    The biggest weakness in Nina's Tragedies, is the character of Nadav. His shadowy presence leaves the movie without a solid center around which to spin its tales.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    An unpretentious, well-acted ensemble piece that doesn't aspire to be a portentous generational time capsule like "The Big Chill," "American Graffiti" or "Diner." But it has enough markers - a grown-up, married white rapper who break dances; a karaoke bar - to suggest an approximate date.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    Trucker sometimes feels like a performance in search of a movie.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    The film's energy begins to flag after less than an hour, and as its pulse slackens it turns into a quirky allegory, punctuated with brilliant visionary flashes that partially redeem a philosophic ham-handedness.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    The cinematic equivalent of a visit from a cherished but increasingly dithery maiden aunt.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    Despite the intensity of their performances, Ms. Watts and Mr. Dillon are only fleetingly convincing as these desperate young Americans trying to maintain a foothold.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    Maddeningly, purposefully evasive.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    With its icy cynicism and desolate settings, the film evokes the work of the young Roman Polanski in his sadistic trickster mode.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Holden
    With the ferocity of a drill instructor and the boundless confidence of a self-help guru who combines psychobabble clichés with embarrassingly explicit confessions, Ms. Lynch's Gayle redeems the movie from utter banality.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    Red
    Once Avery's mission assumes a Freudian dimension, the allegory loses its moral force and changes from a meditation on justice, power and inequality into a gory melodrama.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    The movie is as blunt as its title. It portrays such behavior as "evil" without offering any deep insights or revelations, beyond handing out the plot equivalent of a lollipop at the end of the movie as compensation for the vicarious anguish.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    Although Mr. Leguizamo wisely underplays a role that is just short of saintly, the character is still a filmmaker's bogus, bleeding-heart contrivance in a movie that is much less truthful than it pretends to be.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    May be an expertly manipulated exercise in psychological horror, but that's all it is. Don't look for the kind of metaphoric weight you'd find in a movie by David Lynch or David Fincher.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Holden
    Although there's plenty of opportunity for low comedy in the notion of an emperor and an oaf exchanging roles, The Emperor's New Clothes, much to its detriment, doesn't pursue them.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 40 Stephen Holden
    After the painstaking buildup, the revelations are disappointingly predictable.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    A suds-filled political melodrama that bashes the Roman Catholic Church in Mexico with a contempt that verges on hysteria, could be accused of many things, but timidity is not one of them.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    Superior acting elevates a small, overcrowded ensemble piece set in rural upstate New York into something a little deeper and truer than the mawkish disease-of-the-week movie it threatens to become.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    If Daybreak weren't so powerfully acted, its accumulating anguish would be too much to bear. As it is, all three couples, especially Knut and Mona, verge on caricature.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Stephen Holden
    Rona Munro's screenplay for Oranges and Sunshine is unnecessarily flighty. As the story ricochets between Britain and Australia, the film often loses track of time and becomes fragmented as it struggles to integrate too many subplots. What holds it together is Ms. Watson's calm, sturdy performance.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Stephen Holden
    Because the film doesn’t begin to explore the wider implications of that loss of trust, its findings don’t add up to more than a sardonic gloss on a provocative subject.

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