Todd McCarthy
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For 1,417 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 51% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 47% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 2.5 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Todd McCarthy's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Youth
Lowest review score: 0 Showgirls
Score distribution:
1,417 movie reviews
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Dawn of the Planet of the Apes manages to do at least three things exceptionally well that are hard enough to pull off individually: Maintain a simmering level of tension without let-up for two hours, seriously improve on a very good first entry in a franchise and produce a powerful humanistic statement using a significantly simian cast of characters.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Youth is a voluptuary’s feast, a full-body immersion in the sensory pleasures of the cinema.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Rourke creates a galvanizing, humorous, deeply moving portrait that instantly takes its place among the great, iconic screen performances. An elemental story simply and brilliantly told, Darren Aronofsky's fourth feature is a winner from every possible angle.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A career high point for Ralph Fiennes as both an actor and director, this unfussy and emotionally penetrating work also provides lead actress Felicity Jones with the prime role in which she abundantly fulfills the promise suggested in some of her earlier small films.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    The violence of the inter-American drug trade has served as the backdrop for any number of films for more than three decades, but few have been as powerful and superbly made as Sicario.
    • 98 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A prodigious achievement that conveys the fabric of modern American life, aspirations and incidentally, sports, in close-up and at length, Hoop Dreams is a documentary slam dunk.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Stunningly made and incisively acted by a large and terrific cast, Michael Mann's ambitious study of the relativity of good and evil stands apart from other films of its type by virtue of its extraordinarily rich characterizations and its thoughtful, deeply melancholy take on modern life.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    An enormously entertaining slice of biographical drama, The Aviator flies like one of Howard Hughes' record-setting speed airplanes.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Up
    A captivating odd-couple adventure that becomes funnier and more exciting as it flies along.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    It's the selective but cumulative use of seemingly arbitrary but significant experiences that gives Boyhood its distinctive character and impressive weight.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    This spirited and often very funny lark accomplishes something that most films in the bygone Hollywood studio era used to do but is remarkably rare in today's world of niche markets: It offers entertainment equally to viewers from 4 to 104.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Classily and classically crafted in the best sense by director John Crowley and screenwriter Nick Hornby, this superbly acted romantic drama is set in the early 1950s and provides the feeling of being lifted into a different world altogether, so transporting is the film’s sense of time and place and social mores.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Ever-eclectic director Jon Favreau, who briefly pops up onscreen as a Stark minion, maintains a brisk but not frantic pace, and, in concert with lenser Matthew Libatique, production designer J. Michael Riva and the first-rate visual effects team, has made an unusually elegant looking film for the genre.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    At once the most realistic and beautifully choreographed film ever set in space, Gravity is a thrillingly realized survival story spiked with interludes of breath-catching tension and startling surprise.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Originally conceived as one film, the two-parter that has finally emerged can now be seen as a truly epic work.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    As deliriously smart escapist fare, The Incredibles is practically nonpareil.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Represents that filmmaking rarity -- a third part of a trilogy that is decisively the best of the lot. With epic conflict, staggering battles, striking landscapes and effects, and resolved character arcs all leading to a dramatic conclusion to more than nine hours of masterful storytelling.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    An astonishingly good and daring film that richly develops several intertwined thematic lines, The Crying Game takes giant risks that are stunningly rewarded.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Two things stand out: the extraordinary command of cinematic technique, which alone is nearly enough to keep a connoisseur on the edge of his seat the entire time, and the tremendous portrayals by Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman of two entirely antithetical men
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A searingly visceral combat picture, Steven Spielberg’s third World War II drama is arguably second to none as a vivid, realistic and bloody portrait of armed conflict.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A powerfully intimate domestic drama, Ordinary People represents the height of craftsmanship across the board.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A gemlike picture crafted with rare and immaculate precision.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A fabulous and passionate love letter to the cinema and its preservation framed by the strenuous adventures of two orphans in 1930s Paris.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Driven by a brilliant, ferocious performance by Michael Fassbender, Shame is a real walk on the wild side, a scorching look at a case of sexual addiction that's as all-encompassing as a craving for drugs.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A scorching blast of tense genre filmmaking shot through with rich veins of melancholy, down-home philosophy and dark, dark humor, No Country for Old Men reps a superior match of source material and filmmaking talent.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Fully justifying the decision, once thought purely mercenary, of splitting J.K. Rowling's final book into two parts, this is an exciting and, to put it mildly, massively eventful finale that will grip and greatly please anyone who has been at all a fan of the series up to now.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Meticulous care is evident in every aspect of the film. All three actors playing Pi are outstanding.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Emotionally powerful and stylistically sure-handed, this true story-inspired drama begins small with the disappearance of a young boy, only to gradually fan out to become a comprehensive critique of the entire power structure of Los Angeles, circa 1928.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    King of the Hill has all the rich satisfactions of a fine novel.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    This is a gorgeously made character study leavened with surrealistic dimensions both comic and dark, an unsparing look at a young man who, unlike some of his contemporaries, can’t transcend his abundant character flaws and remake himself as someone else.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Blasting onto the screen at warp speed and remaining there for two hours, the new and improved Star Trek will transport fans to sci-fi nirvana.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Staying at the top of his game when most of his contemporaries have long since hung up their gloves, Clint Eastwood delivers another knockout punch with Million Dollar Baby.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    It's very much an art piece, to be sure, but it feels like a genuine one that, while meditated, speaks fluently and truly for the place, people and culture it so indelibly depicts.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    This is one hot, provocative, revelatory and astonishing documentary, one sure to provoke enthralled interest and controversy wherever it is shown worldwide.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    This is one vintage film that fully lives up to its classic status and should play with outstanding success to contemporary audiences of all ages.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    An irresistible treat with enough narrative twists and memorable characters for a half-dozen films.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Precise, lucid and thrillingly disciplined, this story of boundary-testing in the early days of psychoanalysis is brought to vivid life by the outstanding lead performances of Keira Knightley, Viggo Mortensen and Michael Fassbender.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Mel Gibson is always good for a surprise, and his latest is that Apocalypto is a remarkable film. Set in the waning days of the Mayan civilization, the picture provides a trip to a place one's never been before, offering hitherto unseen sights of exceptional vividness and power.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Only Lovers Left Alive is an addictive mood and tone piece, a nocturnal reverie that incidentally celebrates a marriage that has lasted untold centuries.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Ida
    Frame by frame, Ida looks resplendently bleak, its stunning monochromes combining with the inevitable gloomy Polish weather and communist-era deprivations to create a harsh, unforgiving environment.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    After a five-year wait since "Sideways," Alexander Payne has made his best film yet with The Descendants. Ostensibly a study of loss and coping with a tragic situation, this wonderfully nuanced look at a father and two daughters dealing with the imminent death of his wife and their mother turns the miraculous trick of possibly being even funnier than it is moving.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    But the filmmakers have invigorated and enriched the story through the use of a thousand details, a strong sense of time and place, outstanding characterizations and a display of energy and cinematic flair that marks an advance on "My Left Foot."
    • tbd Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    For American viewers of an intellectual/historical persuasion, there could scarcely be any documentary more enticing, scintillating and downright fascinating than Best of Enemies.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Particle Fever succeeds on every level, but none more important than in making the normally intimidating and arcane world of genius-level physics at least conceptually comprehensible and even friendly to the lay viewer.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    The film's exhilarating originality, black comedy and tone that is at once empathetic and acidic will surely strike a strong chord with audiences looking for something fresh that will take them somewhere they haven't been before.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Boldly and magnificently strange, There Will Be Blood marks a significant departure in the work of Paul Thomas Anderson.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    The film is terribly smart in every respect, with ne'er-a-false note performances and superb craft work from top to bottom.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    In every sense, The Great Museum (Das grosse Museum) imparts a feeling of privilege — privilege on the part of those (the Hapsburgs) who built and opened Vienna's extraordinary Kunsthistorisches Museum in 1891, privilege among those lucky enough to work at such a rarified establishment and privilege on the part of any viewer of Johannes Holzhausen's wonderfully evocative and droll documentary.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Remarkably funny and entirely convincing, film pulls off the rare accomplishment of being an in-drag comedy which also emerges with three-dimensional characters.
    • 95 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    The film's power steadily and relentlessly builds over its long course, to a point that is terrifically imposing and unshakable.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Rare proof that a gigantic production in contemporary Hollywood can possess a distinctive personality and its own approach to storytelling, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World proves as bracing as a stiff wind on the open sea.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Makes everything in the rival Marvel universe look thoroughly silly and childish. Entirely enveloping and at times unnerving in a relevant way one would never have imagined, as a cohesive whole this ranks as the best of Nolan's trio, even if it lacks -- how could it not? -- an element as unique as Heath Ledger's immortal turn in The Dark Knight. It's a blockbuster by any standard.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    The pleasure is doubled in Spider-Man 2. Crackerjack entertainment from start to finish, this rousing yarn about a reluctant superhero and his equally conflicted friends and enemies improves in every way on its predecessor and is arguably about as good a live-action picture as anyone's ever made using comicbook characters.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Clint Eastwood has crafted a tense, hard-edged, superbly dramatic yarn that is also an exceedingly intelligent meditation on the West, its myths and its heroes.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    The Usual Suspects is an ironic, bang-up thriller about the wages of crime. A terrific cast of exciting actors socks over this absorbingly complicated yarn that's been spun in a seductively slick fashion by director Bryan Singer.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Mesmerizing in its incremental layering of a bizarre, tragic and thoroughly warped character study, Foxcatcher sees director Bennett Miller well surpassing even the fine work he did in his previous two films, Capote and Moneyball.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Enormously ambitious and masterfully made, Traffic represents docudrama-style storytelling at a very high level.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Had the aura of an instant classic when it was released, and the good news is that it looks at least that good, if not better, on the eve of its 20th anniversary reissue.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A gritty, intense and supremely accomplished sci-fier.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Avatar is all-enveloping and transporting, with Cameron & Co.'s years of R&D paying off with a film that, as his work has done before, raises the technical bar and throws down a challenge for the many other filmmakers toiling in the sci-fi/fantasy realm.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Exploding Raymond Carver's spare stories and minimally drawn characters onto the screen with startling imagination, Robert Altman has made his most complex and full-bodied human comedy since "Nashville."
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Sam Mendes' much-anticipated second effort after his Oscar-winning "American Beauty" finds him working in a very different key while displaying an even more pronounced attentiveness to tone, genre variations and artistic niceties.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A seductively structured and superbly acted suspenser that breathtakingly piles swindle upon scam without giving away the game until the very end.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Driven by fantastic energy and a torrent of vivid images of India old and new, Slumdog Millionaire is a blast.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A riveting, thematically probing, richly atmospheric and just occasionally troublesome work, a deeply inquisitive consideration of the extent of trust and mutual knowledge possible between a man and a woman.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Brilliance of the action and effects are supplemented by a consistently superior and resourceful score by Tan Dun.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A beautifully observed, small-scale study of personal foibles, romantic uncertainty and two sides of the sadly predictable male animal.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Ominously atmospheric study of police corruption dangles danger and sinister motives at every turn.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    One of the best Westerns of the 1970s, which represents the highest possible praise. It's a magnificent throwback to a time when filmmakers found all sorts of ways to refashion Hollywood's oldest and most durable genre.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Performed with matchless aplomb and made with plush professionalism, pic serves up pure pleasure from beginning to end.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    An exemplary and dynamic work that goes about as far as a narrative film can in both analyzing a complex personality and portraying a cultural scene.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Toy Story 2 is to "Toy Story" what "The Empire Strikes Back" was to its predecessor, a richer, more satisfying film in every respect.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A frank, intimate look at a phenomenal popular artist and his extraordinarily dysfunctional family, Crumb is an excellent countercultural documentary.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Expert story construction and compelling thesping and direction make all the narrative elements pay off as if calculated by a precision instrument in which all the parts are working perfectly.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A remarkably vibrant and frank look at one precocious teen’s emerging sexual life — a film with the stuff of life coursing through its veins and sex very much on its brain.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Barry Levinson goes deep with Liberty Heights, and the result is a grand slam.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Although the story is built around the automatically emotional situation of an imperiled kid, scripters Richard Price (who appears briefly as an uncomfortably handcuffed victim of Sinise in the early going) and Alexander Ignon and director Ron Howard largely steer clear of milking the easy melodrama.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Gripping, highly dramatic thriller that more than confirms the distinctive talent of young Brit helmer Christopher Nolan.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Brandishing an ambition it's likely no film, including this one, could entirely fulfill, The Tree of Life is nonetheless a singular work, an impressionistic metaphysical inquiry into mankind's place in the grand scheme of things that releases waves of insights amid its narrative imprecisions.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A very entertaining get-tough fantasy with political and feminist underpinnings.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    This reworking of a popular Hong Kong picture pulses with energy, tangy dialogue and crackling performances from a fine cast.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Last year's "The Prisoner of Azkaban" seemed dark, but this excellent fourth film derived from J.K. Rowling's books is the darkest "Potter" yet, intense enough to warrant a PG-13 rating.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Jenkins brings a rigor, intelligence and eye for the slightly absurd to the proceedings that is instantly disarming.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Dramatically gripping while still brandishing a droll undercurrent of humor, this beautifully made film will certainly be embraced as one of the best Bonds by loyal fans worldwide and leaves you wanting the next one to turn up sooner than four years from now.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    This absorbing drama provides Denzel Washington with one of his meatiest, most complex roles, and he flies with it.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Audiences will be excused for any feelings of déjà vu the new film might inspire. That won't prevent them from watching it in rapt, anxious silence, however, as the gruesome crimes, twisted psychology and deterministic dread that lie at the heart of Harris' work are laid out with care and skill.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    The timing in the Clooney-Farmiga scenes is like splendid tennis, with each player surprising the other with shots but keeping the rally going to breathtaking duration.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    As originated by Grisham and adapted by Akiva Goldsman, this is a story of elemental emotional and legal issues splashed across a large canvas, and director Joel Schumacher has done a solid job of keeping the many components in focus and balance.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Looks to please the book's legions of fans with its imaginatively scrupulous rendering of the tome's characters and worlds on the screen, as well as the uninitiated with its uninterrupted flow of incident and spectacle.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Structurally and thematically similar to John Frankenheimer's original but entirely different in style, feel and nuance, this political thriller about a brainwashed soldier being positioned for the White House provides a delectable network of dramatic tripwires that teases the mind and quickens the pulse. This is brainy popcorn fare.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Rib-ticklingly funny at times and genial as all get-out.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    It all moves along briskly, with a degree of visual grace and a solid feel for 3D.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Argo is a crackerjack political thriller told with intelligence, great period detail and a surprising amount of nutty humor for a serious look at the Iran hostage crisis of 1979-81.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Taking advantage of a splendid cast, a sharply focused script and the fresh English setting, "Gosford Park" emerges as one of the most satisfying of Robert Altman's numerous ensemble pictures.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    All but stealing the film is Cooper, who seizes a rare opportunity as an extroverted, rather than buttoned-up, character to bust loose like an uncaged alligator.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Effectively building dread and emotional tension as tragic incidents triggered by human stupidity and carelessness steadily multiply, this film, like "21 Grams" in particular, employs a deterministically grim mindset in the cause of its philosophical aspirations, but is gripping nearly all the way.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Grandly conceived and sensitively drawn.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A spectacular demonstration of what modern technology can contribute to dramatic storytelling.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Through immaculate use of picture, sound and time, the director adds another panel to his series of pictures about disaffected, disconnected youth.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Her
    This is a probing, inquisitive work of a very high order, although it goes a bit slack in the final third and concludes rather conventionally compared to much that has come before.

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