Vincent Canby
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For 169 reviews, this critic has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 52% lower than the average critic
On average, this critic grades 4.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)

Vincent Canby's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
Average review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Raiders of the Lost Ark
Lowest review score: 10 Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 87 out of 169
  2. Negative: 27 out of 169
169 movie reviews
    • tbd Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Stuffed with plummy English accents and the most inauthentic classroom scenes since those of "Billy Madison," Life, Translated has a childlike innocence that seems targeted toward a preteenage audience.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Red Heat is a topically entertaining variation on the sort of action-adventure nonsense that plays best on television. Mr. Hill's touch is heavy when he takes himself seriously. However, he has a real gift for instantly disposable fantasy.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Miss Duvall is superb - genteely ladylike one minute, a woman of volcanic passions the next.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Lethal Weapon 3 isn't that much worse than the two earlier films.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    The biggest, longest, most expensive Leone Western to date, and, in many ways, the most absurd... Granting the fact that it is quite bad, Once Upon the Time in the West is almost always interesting, wobbling, as it does, between being an epic lampoon and a serious hommage to the men who created the dreams of Leone's childhood. (Review of Original Release)
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Peter Weir’s The Year of Living Dangerously is a good, romantic melodrama that suffers more than most good, romantic melodramas in not being much better than it is.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Within the limits and cliches of utterly predictable material, Mr. Coppola is still finally able to make this one from the heart.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Last Action Hero is something of a mess, but a frequently enjoyable one. It tries to be too many things to too many different kinds of audiences, the result being that it will probably confuse, and perhaps even alienate, the hard-core action fans.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Although its aspirations are high, the film works only fitfully when Mr. Singleton exercises his gift for vernacular speech, for finding the comic undertow in otherwise tragic situations, and even for parody.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Mr. Almodovar's comic invention runs out too soon, leaving the audience to giggle weakly in anticipation of the big laughs and disorienting shocks that never arrive.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    More problematical is the tone of the film, which attempts to be both compassionate and goofy, though the events are funny only if they are seen as farcical.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    In much the way that Raymond stays detached, the performance seems to exist outside the film but, instead of illuminating Rain Man, it upstages the work of everyone else involved. [16 Dec 1988, p.C12]
    • The New York Times
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Watching it is like spending a day at an amusement park, which is probably what Mr. Spielberg and his associates intended. It moves tirelessly from one ride or attraction to the next, only occasionally taking a minute out for a hot dog, and then going right on to the next unspeakable experience.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Though Mr. Billingsley, Mr. Gavin, Miss Dillon and the actress who plays Ralphie's school teacher are all very able, they are less funny than actors in a television situation comedy that one has chosen to watch with the sound turned off.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    The movie is sorrowful, funny and beautiful. It is also, finally, very unsatisfactory.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    It's big, colorful, slightly vulgar, occasionally boring and full of talent not always used to its limits.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    The film recreates Toby and Caroline's aimlessness, but without appearing to understand it enough to make it as moving and important as it ought to be.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    After Hours is not, ultimately, a satisfying film, but it's often vigorously unsettling.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    However, like many album covers, Purple Rain, though sometimes arresting to look at, is a cardboard come-on to the record it contains.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Mr. De Niro and Mr. Grodin are lunatic delights, which is somewhat more than can be said for the movie, whose mechanics keep getting in the way of the performances. [20 July 1988, p.C15]
    • The New York Times
    • 58 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Class Action won't put you to sleep. Yet it vanishes from the memory as fast as anything dreamed in the conventional manner.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    A comedy so lazily hip and so laid back that it often seems to be asleep.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    JFK
    The movie, which is simultaneously arrogant and timorous, has been unable to separate the important material from the merely colorful.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 60 Vincent Canby
    Unfortunately the plot thickens so rapidly and so lumpily that one very soon loses interest in spite of the quite stunning and gory special effects.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    It all goes decisively wrong when Jerry Schatzberg, the director, and Garry Michael White, who wrote the screenplay, decide to saddle the pair with a poetic vision that suddenly makes everything needlessly phony.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    It's also very well written by Jerry Juhl and Jack Burns and directed by James Frawley ("Kid Blue," "The Big Bus") with a comic touch that never becomes facetious.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    Like "Blood Simple," it's full of technical expertise but has no life of its own... The direction is without decisive style. [11 Mar 1987, p.C24]
    • The New York Times
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    In 9 1/2 Weeks, he has created a work that might well qualify as a truly nouveau film. Here is a movie in which actors impersonating characters are blended into the decor so completely that they take on the properties of animated products, no more or less important than exquisitely photographed strawberries.[21 Feb 1986, p.C17]
    • The New York Times
    • 78 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    Mr. Mann may well become a very good theatrical film maker but, among other things, he's going to have to learn how to edit himself, to resist the temptation to allow dialogue that is colorful to turn, all of a sudden, into deep, abiding purple. Time after time scenes start off well and slip into unintentionally comic excess.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    The movie is extremely long (two hours and 34 minutes) and so slow that by the end you feel as if you've been standing up even if you've been sitting down.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    Stir Crazy is an energetic but spiritless shambles.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    Sometimes funny and, in the way of small-screen entertainment, so perfectly predictable that one could mail in the laughs.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    Watching Star Trek — the Motion Picture...is like attending your high-school class's 10th reunion at Caesar's Palace. Most of the faces are familiar, but the décor has little relationship to anything you've ever seen before.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    The screenplay, by Daniel Petrie Jr. and Jack Baran, has a number of funny lines and situations, but the end result looks fiddled with by people attempting to ''fix'' things.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 50 Vincent Canby
    Scrooged works in fits and starts. The mundane demands of the sentimental story keep interrupting what are, essentially, revue sketches, a few of which are hilarious.
    • 66 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    It's neither funny nor solemn. It has the personality not of a particular movie but of a product, of something arrived at by corporate decision.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    It is funny, unpretentious and fast-paced. It has a kind of comicbook appreciation for direct action and no time whatsoever for mysticism or for scenery for its own sake, though most of it was shot in Morocco and is fun to look at.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    In spite of its authentic scenery (it was filmed in Belize), this Mosquito Coast is utterly flat.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    Something Wild is often "Something Wrong."
    • 51 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    Cute is the operative word for the movie, which stars some good actors doing material that is not super.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    Truly, Madly, Deeply should be enchanting, but it isn't. Everyone pushes too hard, especially Mr. Minghella, the writer and director. There are a few amusing lines and a lot of terrible ones, including Nina's overwrought response, early in the film, when her sister wants to borrow Jamie's cello: "It's like asking me to give you his body!"
    • 58 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    The movie finally is never very convincing. Even the special effects aren't great. Mr. Connery, however, wears the movie as if it were a favorite old hat. He makes it look good.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    Except for Mr. Lloyd, the film is so sweet-natured and bland that it is almost instantly forgettable.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    Mr. Blake's screenplay and Mr. Costner's direction of it are, with the exception of three memorable sequences, commonplace. The film is painstakingly composed of small details of frontier and tribal life that should be riveting. Most of the time they aren't.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    The movie plows through one outrageous sequence to the next with the momentum of a freight train.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    It's a big, expensive, time-consuming, essentially mechanical operation.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    Tremors wants to be funny, but it spends too much time winking at the audience. More than anything else, it looks like the sort of movie that might have been put together so that tourists visiting Universal Studios could see a movie being made.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    Hook is overwhelmed by a screenplay heavy with complicated exposition, by what are, in effect, big busy nonsinging, nondancing production numbers and some contemporary cant about rearing children and the high price paid for success.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    This time, though, Mr. Lynch's conceits are less often pleasurably disorienting than out of focus.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    It's more cheerful than funny, and so insistently ungrudging about Americans and Japanese alike that its satire cuts like a wet sponge.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    A surprisingly cheesy horror film to come from Mr. Carpenter (''Halloween,'' ''Escape From New York,'' among others), a director whose work is usually far more efficient and inventive.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    White Nights is only tolerable when Mr. Baryshnikov is on screen, especially when he is dancing alone or with Mr. Hines, with whom he does a couple of ballet-tap numbers that are of an order of excellence that has nothing to do with the rest of the movie.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    The movie has the fuzzy focus of someone who has stared too long at a light bulb. Narrative points aren't made and the wrong points are emphasized. It could also be that too much footage was shot so that, when the time came for editing, a lot of essential material had to be cut out.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    The Last Emperor is like an elegant travel brochure. It piques the curiosity. One wants to go. Ultimately it's a let-down.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 40 Vincent Canby
    The only remarkable thing about Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather, Part II is the insistent manner in which it recalls how much better his original film was...Even if Part II were a lot more cohesive, revealing, and exciting than it is, it probably would have run the risk of appearing to be the self-parody it now seems.

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