Todd McCarthy
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For 1,380 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 2.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Todd McCarthy's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Up
Lowest review score: 0 Being Human
Score distribution:
1,380 movie reviews
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    An irresistible treat with enough narrative twists and memorable characters for a half-dozen films.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A gemlike picture crafted with rare and immaculate precision.
    • 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.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Enormously ambitious and masterfully made, Traffic represents docudrama-style storytelling at a very high level.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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
    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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    An enormously entertaining slice of biographical drama, The Aviator flies like one of Howard Hughes' record-setting speed airplanes.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    As deliriously smart escapist fare, The Incredibles is practically nonpareil.
    • 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.
    • 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."
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 92 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Boldly and magnificently strange, There Will Be Blood marks a significant departure in the work of Paul Thomas Anderson.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Up
    A captivating odd-couple adventure that becomes funnier and more exciting as it flies along.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    King of the Hill has all the rich satisfactions of a fine novel.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    A powerfully intimate domestic drama, Ordinary People represents the height of craftsmanship across the board.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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
    • 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.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 100 Todd McCarthy
    Meticulous care is evident in every aspect of the film. All three actors playing Pi are outstanding.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 90 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.
    • 82 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.
    • 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.
    • 89 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.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Like hard-edged "Masterpiece Theater."
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Barry Levinson goes deep with Liberty Heights, and the result is a grand slam.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    An uncommonly smart, sharp and irreverent American picture.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Good old-fashioned virtues of three-dimensional characters, fine dialogue, recognizable life situations and meat-and-potatoes content.
    • 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.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Brandishes the sort of intelligent wit and bracing nastiness that will make it more appealing to discerning adults than to teens who just want to have fun.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Has a sharper narrative focus and a livelier sense of forward movement than did the more episodic "Fellowship."
    • 40 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A markedly better picture than Roberto Benigni's far more sentimental Oscar collector.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Robert Redford's handsome, smartly constructed new film stands likely to capture the imagination of the educated, culturally inclined public.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Vastly entertaining.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A weightier, more nuanced and fulsome experience than the film the world has known up to now.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Technically superb and witty in an old-fashioned, veddy British way that will delight many adults but will sail over the heads of young audiences.
    • 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.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Ominously atmospheric study of police corruption dangles danger and sinister motives at every turn.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A flat-out hilarious mainstream comedy.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A spectacular demonstration of what modern technology can contribute to dramatic storytelling.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    An intensely imaginative piece of conceptual filmmaking that also delivers the goods as a dread-drenched horror movie.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    The script is faithful, the actors are just right, the sets, costumes, makeup and effects match and sometimes exceed anything one could imagine.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    The rough power, as well as the humor and sensitivity, of pop phenom Eminem is delivered intact in 8 Mile.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    George Lucas has reached deep into the trove of his self-generated mythological world to produce a grand entertainment that offers a satisfying balance among the series' epic, narrative, technological and emotional qualities.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Delivers enough thrills, kicks and cool moments to satiate geeks, fans and mere general viewers worldwide -- until the "Revolutions" installment wraps up the trilogy in November.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    This is not "E.T.," nor is it a kid's film nor even necessarily a major mass-audience film, although Spielberg's name, high public anticipation and the child-oriented campaign will make it perform like one.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A first-rate thriller with grit and intrigue to spare.
    • 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.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Gripping, highly dramatic thriller that more than confirms the distinctive talent of young Brit helmer Christopher Nolan.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Wickedly funny.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Truly beguiling romantic comedy.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A script as fresh and distinctive as any produced in the States in recent memory.
    • 93 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Brilliance of the action and effects are supplemented by a consistently superior and resourceful score by Tan Dun.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Entirely unpredictable and marked by audacious strokes of directorial bravado.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Bears all the earmarks of a magnum opus for Martin Scorsese: Fascinating and fresh material about his beloved New York City, an epic reach, an equally epic gestation period, a dynamic criminal element, combustible socio-political-religious elements, outstanding actors and sophisticated allusions to cinema history that inform and enrich the experience.
    • 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.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    T3 delivers the goods. A hard-hitting, straight-ahead sci-fi actioner with none of the pretentions and ponderousness that have put at least a portion of the public off of "The Matrix Reloaded" and "Hulk."
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Considerable intelligence and strategic finesse have been brought to bear on this handsomely mounted adaptation of Michael Cunningham's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, which was hardly a natural for the bigscreen.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A smart sex comedy that successfully swims upstream to spawn and score.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Manages the difficult feat of being an intimate, even delicate tale played with an appealingly light touch against an epic backdrop.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    This full-bodied adaptation of Dennis Lehane's involved and involving 2001 bestselling crime novel about old friends in Boston's working-class Irish neighborhood finds Clint Eastwood near the top of his directorial game with a cast of first-rate actors.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Wayne Kramer's sexy and often humorous feature directorial debut surrounds its sweet center with the energy, flash and risk of the gambling capital. Sterling performances by William H. Macy and Maria Bello as the long-shot lovers and Alec Baldwin as a temperamental casino operator.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    An intelligent, visually ravishing adaptation of Tracy Chevalier's best-selling novel.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Errol Morris delivers a compelling, thoughtful and entirely involving documentary in The Fog of War.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A faithful, powerful and superbly acted adaptation of Andre Dubus III's international bestseller.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Uses first-person on-camera accounts of the adventure by Simpson and fellow climber Simon Yates to backdrop newly shot you-are-there footage that brings home the awesome and harrowing aspects of their feat.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A dazzling delight.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Wang has made a dramatically confident move into the mainstream on his own terms with highly congenial material.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    If films about coping with memory loss and/or reverse-order storytelling now constitute a mini-genre, then Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is arguably the best of the lot.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Lightning strikes twice, but not as brilliantly as before, in Shrek 2. The welcome sequel to the monster 2001 Oscar winner about an ogre's unlikely romance with a beautiful princess successfully recycles many of the qualities that made the first one an instant animated classic and worldwide smash.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A very entertaining get-tough fantasy with political and feminist underpinnings.
    • 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.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    As carefully constructed, handsomely crafted and flavorsomely acted as a top-of-the-line production from Hollywood's classical studio era, Francis Ford Coppola's screen version of John Grisham's The Rainmaker would seem to represent just about all a filmmaker could do with the best-selling author's patented dramatic formulas without subverting them altogether.
    • 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.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Wonderfully acted and slickly mad. Acutely written with an eye to the motivations and ambiguities involved on both sides in such a relationship.
    • 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.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Crucially for such an elaborately dressed production, the characters all come thoroughly alive with their ready wits and pulsing emotions, overcoming the two-century gap with seeming effortlessness.
    • 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.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Tightly made and populated by a uniformly larger-than-life cast of characters , pic is a total delight for every second of its running time.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    With its strong premise, a couple of fine performances and highly polished tooling, The Jackal scores as an involving high-tech thriller that occasionally hits peaks of pulsating excitement.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Emerges as the best in the overall series since "The Empire Strikes Back."
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A gritty, intense and supremely accomplished sci-fier.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    In his bigscreen feature debut, director and co-writer Jonathan Mostow displays real flair for visceral cinema while adroitly sidestepping many of the usual tripwires of this sort of film, particularly silly coincidences, stupid decisions on the part of characters with whom you're supposed to identify, and superheroics performed by ordinary people.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Almost too much of a good thing, Peter Jackson's remake of the film that made him want to make movies is a super-sized version of a yarn that was big to begin with, a stupendous adventure that maximizes, and sometimes oversells, its dazzling wares.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Outstandingly realized on all levels.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    But where most rugged he-man films feature a few action sequences scattered throughout, director Renny Harlin keeps the adventure stuff in this reputed $ 65 million production coming at an astonishing pace.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Rebounding from his biggest career flopflop with "Havana," Sydney Pollack has done an ultra-pro job in giving spit and polish to this star-driven, sure-fire commercial project.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Lee takes a conventional, talking-heads-and-archival-clips approach to the material, but rewardingly establishes an intimate connection with his subjects by devoting considerable time to the personalities and families of the four victims.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Rib-ticklingly funny at times and genial as all get-out.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Grandly conceived and sensitively drawn.
    • 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.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Ambitiously tackling his biggest canvas to date, Clint Eastwood continues to defy and triumph over the customary expectations for a film career in Flags of Our Fathers.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    It's not really either an animal or a kids' film but rather a young adult drama that rings emotionally true.
    • 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.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Taken together, "Flags" and "Letters" represent a genuinely imposing achievement, one that looks at war unflinchingly -- that does not deny its necessity but above all laments the human loss it entails.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Conveying an astonishing array of information across a long narrative arc while still maintaining dramatic rhythm and tension, this adaptation of Robert Graysmith's bestseller reps by far director David Fincher's most mature and accomplished work.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    As vivid and suspenseful as Roman Polanski has made this claustrophobic tale of a torture victim turning the tables on her putative tormentor, one is still left with a film in which each character represents a mouthpiece for an ideology.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    An astonishing work of studio artifice, A Little Princess is that rarest of creations, a children's film that plays equally well to kids and adults.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A "GoodFellas" with heart, A Bronx Tale represents a wonderfully vivid snapshot of a colorful place and time, as well as a very satisfying directorial debut by Robert De Niro. Overflowing with behavioral riches and the flavor of a deep-dyed New York Italian neighborhood, the film also trades intelligently in pertinent moral and social issues that raise it above the level of nostalgia or the mere memoir.
    • 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.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    This handsomely produced period piece is easily the most emotionally effective bigscreen melodrama since "The Joy Luck Club," as well as the most intelligent.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A pounding, pulsating thriller that provides an almost constant adrenaline surge for nearly two hours.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A superbly wrought yarn set in the milieu of first-generation Russian mobsters in London that is simultaneously tough-minded and compassionate about the human condition, Eastern Promises instantly takes its place among David Cronenberg's very best films.
    • 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.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Jenkins brings a rigor, intelligence and eye for the slightly absurd to the proceedings that is instantly disarming.
    • 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.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Dazzlingly well made and perhaps deliberately less fanciful than the previous entries, this one is played in a mode closer to palpable life-or-death drama than any of the others and is quite effective as such.
    • 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.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Smart, droll and dazzling to look at and listen to, writer-director Tony Gilroy's effervescent, intricately plotted puzzler proves in every way superior to his 2007 success "Michael Clayton."
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Artistically on a plane with or near the vet filmmaker's best work, this period drama about a woman slowly discovering her metier is an artisanal creation par excellence.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    By getting Tyson to open up as he has, Toback has succeeded in illuminating one of the most polarizing, complex and -- the film almost forces one to admit -- misunderstood figures of our time.
    • 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.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Breaking through any period-piece mustiness with piercing insight into the emotions and behavior of her characters, the writer-director examines the final years in the short life of 19th-century romantic poet John Keats through the eyes of his beloved, Fanny Brawne, played by Abbie Cornish in an outstanding performance.
    • 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.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Immaculately crafted in beautiful black-and-white and entirely absorbing through its longish running time, Michael Haneke’s The White Ribbon nonetheless proves a difficult film to entirely embrace.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    It stands as a unique film-within-a-film, of significance for the historical value of the raw images, the memories they spur and internal evidence of how the Nazis staged scenes long assumed to be real.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    The thoughts may not be profound, but they are profoundly true to life,and the writer-director’s approach to young people’s concerns is remarkably universal and timeless.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    The best blue collar action movie in who knows how long, this tense, narrowly focused thriller about a runaway freight train has a lean and pure simplicity to it that is satisfying in and of itself.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Darius Khondji's cinematography evokes to the hilt the gorgeously inviting Paris of so many people's imaginations (while conveniently ignoring the rest), and the film has the concision and snappy pace of Allen's best work.
    • 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.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    It all moves along briskly, with a degree of visual grace and a solid feel for 3D.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Artist evinces unlimited love for the look and ethos of the 1920s as well for the style of the movies. The filmmakers clearly did their homework and took great pleasure in doing so, an enjoyment that is passed along in ample doses to any viewer game for their nifty little conceit.
    • 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.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Its sharp writing and essential credibility make this small, intimate tale fresh and involving.
    • 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.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Nutty, arcane and jaw-dropping in equal measure, this is a head-first plunge down the rabbit hole of Kubrickiana from which, for some, there is evidently no return.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    The director mixes moods with a playfulness that is both brazen and carefree and yet precisely modulated, yielding results that amplify the specific content of the screenplay. This makes for a film that, however cheap it was to make, is incredibly rich to watch.
    • 97 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Perhaps the nature of the story is such that the film can’t help but be obvious and quite melodramatic at times, but it gets better as it goes along and builds to a moving finish.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Reitman keeps a strong grip on all the aspects of the story to prevent it from becoming corny, unduly melodramatic or obvious.
    • 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.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    I Origins is a bracingly venturesome, exploratory work that achieves an exceptional balance between the emotional and intellectual aspects of its unusual story.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    James has done a wonderful job of telling a colorful life story.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    Darren Aronofsky wrestles one of scripture's most primal stories to the ground and extracts something vital and audacious, while also pushing some aggressive environmentalism, in Noah.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    The main performances are powerful, the visuals are bold and vivid, the final effect one of the gut having been punched and the mind stirred.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 90 Todd McCarthy
    A tough-minded, bracingly blunt look at the sometimes debilitating cost of doing business that casts an unblinking eye on the physical, emotional and moral bottom line.

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