Steve Persall
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For 538 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 69% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 29% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 8.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Steve Persall's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 68
Highest review score: 100 Young Adult
Lowest review score: 0 I'm Still Here
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 51 out of 538
538 movie reviews
    • 51 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    The pleasures of Lovelace are in its casting choices, allowing a brio trio like Sarsgaard, Hank Azaria and Bobby Cannavale to sleaze up a pivotal scene, and an unrecognizable Sharon Stone to go full Jessica Lange as Linda's shamed mother.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    Leigh's characters merely act in a goofy and irritating fashion until their dramatic pay-off scenes. This uneven style cheats fine actors out of the chance to shade their roles rather than rely upon black-and-white emotions. [6 Mar. 1992, p.10]
    • Tampa Bay Times
    • 77 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    Chungking Express essentially tells two muted love stories set in a bustling locale, without fully involving the audience in either. [3 May 1996, p.5]
    • Tampa Bay Times
    • 61 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    The actors are so good that you wish Collyer offered them a richer arc to play, rather than just a topic.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    Gimme Shelter exists less as a social lesson than as a wobbly showcase for Hudgens' still-developing skills.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    It feels like a rush job, needing another draft or two for cohesion's sake, or for Allen to decide what sort of story he's telling.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    It's a pleasing tribute to Steadman, but there's a sense that Paul would really prefer to focus on Thompson's brand of altered-state brilliance, which has been covered in documentaries before. If you're a gonzo completist, For No Good Reason is a must-see.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    Calvary becomes a lurid Agatha Christie yarn with something important to say about the church and Ireland that McDonagh can't fully articulate. Pulp keeps getting in the way.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    I expected, even wanted to cry at The Fault in Our Stars, or at least choke up a little. Yet the transparent eagerness of this movie to break hearts, through means not entirely justifying that end, always pulled me back.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 58 Steve Persall
    The Rover fascinates and frustrates in equal measure, with Michod withholding details of plot and character so thoroughly that a nihilistic fog sets in.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Salt is a movie constantly painting itself into corners then tromping out with arbitrary twists and action distractions.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Will Forte plays his pitifully deluded creation to the hilt in a penknife movie. There's a lot of material here that only occasionally succeeds on Forte's insanely focused performance.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Without previous knowledge of Andy Diggle's comics, The Losers looks like every other globetrotting gunpowder flick in which good guy bullets never miss and bad guy bullets never hit their targets.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    If anyone gets a career boost from The Expendables it will be Dolph Lundgren, playing a drug-addicted loose Howitzer booted from the team and flipping to the bad side.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Imagine a stuffy Merchant Ivory production blended with muted Michael Crichton sci-fi and you have Never Let Me Go, at least as it plays on screen.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Wright is an insanely funny filmmaker (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz) yet only the front half of that description carries over to Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Whatever laughter Lottery Ticket earns is through familiarity with these exaggerated characters, and actors going the extra mile to make viewers believe they haven't seen this material before.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Unstoppable isn't unwatchable, but it is a letdown after "Speed" and some of the Speed-on-a-(fill in the blank with a vehicle) flicks that followed. Forget missing Hopper; even Keanu Reeves might make this movie more entertaining.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Hereafter doesn't feel like a Clint Eastwood film; it's more like a very special edition of John Edward's psychic TV show.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    As a rollicking comedy, it isn't.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    What nags me about Battle Los Angeles is that Liebesman never realizes what he set up to happen after the fade-out.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Brand is amusing, in a nutty "Get Him to the Greek" sort of way, while Moore delivered one of the funniest performances ever.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    As a cinematic effort, Atlas Shrugged: Part I is competent; in service to Ayn Rand's epic novel, it's less so.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    The Beaver plays like a thickly veiled confessional and plea for forgiveness. It's too creepy for comfort.
    • 30 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    I deferred to the wisdom of Grouchy Smurf (George Lopez): "I didn't hate it as much as I expected to. But I still hated it."
    • 36 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Conan the Barbarian has its small, insipid pleasures, if you're in the mood.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    The Raven isn't nearly as much fun as it should be.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    Close's performance is technically perfect and emotionally pinched, which is exactly what her role calls for, but it doesn't make a compelling movie.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    I spent several minutes not caring what was happening with the story but just observing the patchwork illusion of oversized props, short stunt doubles and computer grafting of big faces on small bodies. Nice work.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Steve Persall
    There are too many convenient romances, trumped-up crises and reversals of conscience to clear up while those poor whales suffer. Big Miracle isn't an entirely bad movie but a wholly misguided one.