Todd McCarthy

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For 1,548 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 1 point higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Todd McCarthy's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Changeling
Lowest review score: 0 Showgirls
Score distribution:
1548 movie reviews
    • 93 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    This material cant help but be interesting, even compelling up to a point, but its prosaic presentation suggests that the story's full potential, encompassing deep, disturbing and enduring pain on all sides of the issue, has only begun to be touched.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Surprisingly lacks a feeling of personal urgency and insight that would have made it a distinctive, even unique contribution to the considerable number of films that deal with the war in general and Holocaust in particular.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    From a sensory point of view, the film is a pleasure, the images having been manipulated in various ways to evocative effect, Anderson’s voiceovers proving more amusing than not, and the music taking mostly lively turns.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Jewish and academically inclined audiences worldwide will respond to numerous aspects of this unusual drama, although it is paradoxically both too broad and too esoteric for the general art house public.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    The ultimate effect of [Östlund's] studied techniques is more restricting than beneficial, which, combined with a protracted running time, faintly self-righteous air and a perplexing, misguided coda, produces a sense of letdown at the end despite the strength of much that has come before.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    On their own, individual scenes are effective enough in semi-farcically portraying the ignorance, avoidance and/or downright denial by the practitioners of bad loans. Together, however, they are wearying in their repetitive nature.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    The pervasive chill, ugly feelings and downward spiral of the narrative make this a work that requires an equally sober, serious-minded attitude on the part of the viewer.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    More pictorially arresting than intellectually coherent.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    On its own terms, the plotting of "Devil" is absorbing, and the pieces actually fit together pretty decently. On the other hand, when scenes directly call to mind similar ones in "Chinatown," this effort's stepchild relationship to the classic is forcibly demonstrated.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    While rambunctious and passably humorous, this offspring isn't nearly as imaginative and nimble-minded as the forerunner that spawned it.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Blue Ruin is a talented but sophomoric low-budgeter that straddles the divide between genre thriller and art piece with mixed results.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    While pic remains sympathetic and appealing, the endless dialogue and repetitive settings become wearing through the couple's one long night together, and the artifice of the premise may contribute to the difficulty the film has in coming to romantic life.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    A pictorially unusual but dramatically listless tale.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    This aggravatingly empty would-be suspense piece puts all its trust in its star to save the day, but even this compulsively watchable performer can’t elevate such a vapid, undeveloped screenplay.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    [A] mostly engaging but only fitfully inspired serio-comedy.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    The audaciousness that marked Todd Haynes’ earlier work has been supplanted by self-important preachiness in Safe.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Whit Stillman's stiff directorial approach ill suits the sensual ambiance of the club scene so intently depicted, and the mostly self-conscious, uptight characters seem to have made a left turn out of "Metropolitan" and walked through the wrong door to turn up in this flamboyant druggie scene.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    The mash-up of elements combine with a singularly unpleasant roster of characters to create a work of genuinely off-putting quirkiness.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    As usual, there are only fragments of thoughts, nothing is developed, and it will be left only to the tiny band of die-hard Godardians to try to make any meaningful sense of the disparate fragments stitched together here.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    More than the film that surrounds him, Jack Black is worth the price of admission in Bernie, an oddball May-December true life crime story that would have profited from being a whole lot darker and full-bodied than it is.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    With Gere’s character so lacking in memory and mental clarity, the film provides very little for an audience to latch on to. Tedium quickly sets in and is only sporadically relieved in this labor of love that simply doesn’t reward even the patient attention of sympathetic viewers.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    In trying to merge this alarmist theme with an old-fashioned murder mystery, the filmmakers throw at least one plot-twist sucker-punch too many, leaving the viewer with an “Oh, come on” reaction to the entire film.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    It is nonetheless imaginative in a highly familiar and ultimately tedious way.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Goes down like stiff medicine, leaving one feeling exhausted relief when it's finally over.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Beautifully made pic will spur newsy media coverage and possible consternation on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian divide, but members of the general public will be glancing at their watches rather than having epiphanies about world peace.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    The lead performances have power, whereas pictorially the film is pretty rough and ordinary.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Stylistically audacious in the way it employs six different actors and assorted visual styles to depict various aspects of the troubadour's life and career, the film nevertheless lacks a narrative and a center, much like the "ghost" at its core.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    A nice looking but heavily formulaic DreamWorks animation entry.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    There is amusement to be had, engaging actors to admire and beautiful craftsmanship to behold, but the entertainment quotient is below their usual standard when it comes to the films they target for a mass audience, of which this is one.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    After impressing well enough in his previous big screen directorial outings, Abrams works in a narrower, less imaginative mode here; there's little sense of style, no grace notes or flights of imagination. One feels the dedication of a young musician at a recital determined not to make any mistakes, but there's no hint of creative interpretation, personal feelings or the spreading of artistic wings.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    The only problem is that the great majority of screen time is devoted to the kind of loutish, drunken, small-minded, confrontational macho posturing that, in assorted ethnic stripes, has been paraded across the screen innumerable times in recent years.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Director David Gordon Green has created some fresh, penetrating, beautifully drawn scenes of one-on-one intimacy…But some of what surrounds these interludes is variously misguided, fuzzy and borderline pretentious.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Apart from startling, out-there comic turns by Robert Downey Jr. and Tom Cruise, however, the antics here are pretty thin, redundant and one-note.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Although the humor helps, the Groundhog Day-like repetition gets tedious; it makes you feel more like a hamster than a groundhog — or rather a hamster's wheel, going round and round, over and over again.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Director Spike Jonze's sharp instincts and vibrant visual style can't quite compensate for the lack of narrative eventfulness that increasingly bogs down this bright-minded picture.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Lacks narrative push...atmospheric drama that casts a minor but distinctive spell.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    A study of the urban dope-dealing culture and its toll on everyone who comes in contact with it, the picture has an insider's feel that is constantly undercut by the filmmaker's impulse to editorialize.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Holes will no doubt speak clearly and appealingly to its intended early teen audience.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    A witty and sometimes surreal sci-fi comedy, Men in Black is a wild knuckleball of a movie that keeps dancing in and out of the strike zone.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Adds relatively little insight to the public understanding of wayward military behavior more incisively analyzed in "Taxi to the Dark Side."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    A Judd Apatow clone that's one of the few recent R-rated raunch fests the ubiquitous auteur of larky crudeness actually had nothing to do with, I Love You, Man cranks out the kind of lowball humor that makes you gag on your own laughs.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Oddly, too, the film is somewhat shortchanged by its great star, Johnny Depp, who disappointingly has chosen to play Dillinger as self-consciously cool rather than earthy and gregarious.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    That the film mostly falls flat has far more to do with the largely unconvincing material rather than with the co-stars, who are more than game for often clownish shenanigans Black and his co-writer Anthony Bagarozzi have concocted for them; in fit and starts, the actors display a buoyant comic rapport.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    A coming-of-age piece that is slight to the point of anemia, Unstrung Heroes sports a willful eccentricity that almost immediately becomes annoying.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Deliberately unvarnished shock piece designed to give pause to anyone with a daughter approaching teenhood.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    Achieves some glancing poetic effects during its first hour, but becomes gross and exploitative during the shooting rampage of the final act.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Butler is in no way a hot-headed or contentious piece of agit-prop, unlike so many other election year documentaries; like Kerry himself, the film speaks to the mind, not the emotions.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    There is unquestionably enough lively material here to snare one’s attention but, even at just 76 minutes, many will feel that this cruise has gone on plenty long enough.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    The film is offbeat, silly, disarming and loopy all at the same time, and viewers will decide to ride with that or just give up on it, according to mood and disposition.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    River of Grass works much better as a jokey , theoretical piece of genre revisionism than as a real movie.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Intelligent scripting, solid thesping and eye-catching location shooting aren't enough to make a compelling modern film of The Painted Veil.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    An unsuccessful attempt to get inside the head, under the skin or through the looking glass of Bush administration Secretary of Defense and Iraq War proponent Donald Rumsfeld.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    A balanced, evenhanded film about a subject who has always managed to provoke intemperate reactions.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Malick's exalted visuals and isolated metaphysical epiphanies are ill-supported by a muddled, lurching narrative, resulting in a sprawling, unfocused account of an epochal historical moment.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    This reflection on the past, love and death through the prism of layers of theatrical endeavor is both serious and frisky, engaging on a refined level but frustratingly limited in its complexity and depth.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    The pain feels cushioned and secondhand, the characters are not terribly sympathetic or interesting other than for their misfortune, and the film shows little interest in analyzing the situation other than to point fingers at greedy CEOs.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Nowhere to be found is any dramatic surprise, heightening of the pulse or genuine pulling of heartstrings. Gary Winick's direction consists of button pushing, and the mechanics are palpable at every step.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Craig Zobel effectively sets all its surface parts in motion but, crucially, doesn’t sufficiently develop that turbulent undercurrents of tension and intrigue that are called for in the hothouse circumstances.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Garcia’s take, however beautiful physically, is intellectually opaque and creatively cautious, leaving the interested viewer, whether or not a believer, with much to wonder about but little to actually chew on.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Reasonably intelligent, well-crafted and dramatically understated.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    Pic fails to provide any hard facts or make any incriminating connections that a reasonably informed person doesn't already know about, so intellectually Moore is largely preaching to the converted in this blatant cinematic 2004 campaign pamphlet.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Eventually, the impression is created of notes for good scenes full of pungent observations and sharp asides, but without fully developed drama or emotion, leaving a sketchy, wispy feeling when all is said and done.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    The gambits in Ghost Dog seem simply like literary and cinematic games devoid of any larger meaning.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Achieves a certain poignancy through its sensitivity to mortality in a context where illness and death are often thought of primarily in terms of gossip, blown deals and lost money.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Feels too piecemeal and ultimately inconsequential.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Watching a bunch of people take a drug trip is seldom either entertaining or edifying, but Chilean director Sebastian Silva manages to make it at least tolerably amusing.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    The performances are all sincere and solid and the situation is easy to respond to emotionally. But as a case history in the annals of political repression, it feels like a bit of a side show.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Despite a sprinkling of laughs and eye-catching moments, this adaptation of a popular comicstrip reps a middling effort from the house that "Shrek" built, a rather narrowly conceived tale that makes only modest hay from the overworked conflict between wildlife and encroaching humans.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Cronenberg assumes a distinctly clinical approach to the emotional, social and business shenanigans on display here, a perspective that has brilliantly served some of his overtly psychological, horror and sci-fi pieces but gives this one a brittle and airless feel.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    A sporadically funny romantic comedy with all the dramatic plausibility and tonal consistency of a TV variety show.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    An oddly schizophrenic fantasy thriller that ultimately succumbs to a fatal case of sentimentality.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    A potentially fun premise soon turns into no fun at all in Cop Car, a seriously imagination-challenged low-end action thriller.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 plays like a second ride on a roller-coaster that was a real kick the first time around but feels very been-there/done-that now.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Life may be as unfair and arbitrary as Solondz portrays it, but it is arguably more diverse in its moods and its ups and downs. The pic may not be a dog, but nor is it likely to become anyone’s best friend.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    The gifted fantasy/sci-fi/horror specialist has made a film that's very bloody, and bloody stylish at that, one that's certainly unequaled in its field for the beauty of its camerawork, sets, costumes and effects. But it's also conventionally plotted and not surprising or scary at all, as it resurrects hoary horror tropes from decades ago to utilize them in conventional, rather than fresh or subversive ways
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Avengers: Age of Ultron succeeds in the top priority of creating a worthy opponent for its superheroes and giving the latter a few new things to do, but this time the action scenes don't always measure up and some of the characters are left in a kind of dramatic no-man's-land.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Never less than watchable and loaded with trademark negativity so extreme it's sometimes funny, the new film is nonetheless saddled with a protagonist so narrowly and unlikably presented that, in the end, he doesn't seem worth the time devoted to him.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    The story is undoubtedly weird, but perhaps more so on paper than on the screen, since Russell and his actors have played it mostly straight in attempting to confer psychological validity on all the untoward developments.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Coppola’s attitude toward her subject seems equivocal, uncertain; there is perhaps a smidgen of social commentary, but she seems far too at home in the world she depicts to offer a rewarding critique of it.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Amusingly eccentric rather than outright funny.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    The sensitive macho Schoenaerts is pretty much center-screen throughout this sleekly made suspense piece based on a script more loaded with holes than the numerous bad guys he either shoots or stabs to death.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    What they have done is taken a few second-hand ideas from noir and speculative fiction and mixed them in occasionally striking ways, even if, in the end, the result isn't all that much fun.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    The film represents the director in a more pensive, even philosophical vein, less interested in propulsive cinema and more reflective about what would seem to mean the most to him—dreams, and the ability to make them come true. This is what The BFG is about but, unfortunately, that is basically all it’s about and by a considerable measure too explicitly and single-mindedly so.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Inspiring if not inspired, Lee Daniels' The Butler is a sort of Readers' Digest overview of the 20th century American civil rights movement centered on an ordinary individual with an extraordinary perspective.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Duplass and Moss are put to the test to carry the film entirely on their shoulders and unquestionably carry it off... On the other hand, viewers will have widely disparate reactions to spending 90 uninterrupted minutes with these characters.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Often a gutsy, intelligent writer, Toback has yet to prove himself decisively as a director, and this, his first fictional effort behind the camera in a decade, shows his talents to be as variable as ever.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    Despite its undeniably pure and earnest intent, Solaris is equally undeniably an arid, dull affair that imposes and maintains a huge distance between the viewer and what happens onscreen.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 40 Todd McCarthy
    Worst of all, it just feels tired and recycled.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    The Client is a satisfactory, by-the-numbers child-in-jeopardy thriller that will fill the bill as a very commercial hot weather popcorn picture.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    A minor affair, a confection based on dalliances and the way a set of sophisticated theater people handle them, that lacks true distinction.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    It is far from unpleasant to watch an attractive cast led by Kirsten Dunst parading around Versailles accoutered in Milena Canonero's luxuriant costumes to the accompaniment of catchy pop tunes. But the writer-director's follow-up to her breakthrough second feature, "Lost in Translation," is no more nourishing than a bonbon.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    This is a dish that has been prepared over a low heat for a long time, which makes for some pretty slow-going early on.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    A humdrum straight line of a film, Monsters University never surprises, goes off in unexpected directions or throws you for a loop in the manner of the best Pixar stories. Nor does it come close to elating through the sheer imagination of its conceits and storytelling.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    If you’re going to attempt a quasi-farcical look at the behavior of thirtysomething strivers in Hollywood, you need to cut more sharply and dig more deeply than does L.A. Times.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    When Coppola finds creative nirvana, he frequently has trouble delivering the full goods. Tetro represents something of a middle ground in that respect.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    Unswervingly sincere and dramatic without surprise or revelation, screenwriter Joe Eszterhas' longtime pet project may be personal, but it offers little to audiences that hasn't been served up in quantity in the past.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    The overall enterprise, for all its intrigue and visceral impact, feels overly thought out, affected and forced in its stylization.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Todd McCarthy
    There is a trumped-up quality to the action climaxes that is disappointingly perfunctory, and the story's final revelation is simultaneously far-fetched and unsurprising.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    More than even the most faithful of the earlier episodes, this film feels devoted above all to reproducing the novel onscreen as closely as possible, an impulse that drags it toward ponderousness at times and rather sorely tests the abilities of the young actors to hold the screen entirely on their own, without being propped up by the ever-fabulous array of character actors the series offers.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Todd McCarthy
    A superficial look at the '50s sex icon, picture feels like it was researched via press clippings rather than attempting a fresh rethinking of its era and provocative subject.

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