Baltimore Sun's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 2,001 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 55% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 43% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 The Battle of Algiers (re-release)
Lowest review score: 0 CJ7
Score distribution:
2,001 movie reviews
  1. It's the ideal capper for a cop comedy with a refreshingly wry, adult and humane attitude.
  2. Builds slowly but passionately, not dancing to some Hollywood tune, but finding its characters where they are and letting them be who they are.
  3. With Anything Else, Woody Allen proves himself an old dog capable of thinking up some new tricks.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Connery and Brown absolutely shine in their roles.
    • Baltimore Sun
  4. A wholesome, headlong extravaganza - a sort of North by Northeast sans high style and erotic innuendo.
  5. The Bread, My Sweet is not for the cynical, who will doubtlessly find themselves gasping for air before the film's over and demanding a reality check of anyone who actually likes it. Their loss.
  6. Elf
    Elf tries so hard to be a holiday classic, to be a sweet-natured, charming little piece of holiday gloss, it's tempting to declare it so and simply go with it.
  7. If, like me, you're both desperate to see new public-works systems in our own country and sensitive to the possible human and ecological damage, Up the Yangtze provides a devastating view of top-down, broad-stroke social programs.
  8. This movie will be remembered not for the notorious Bettie Page but for its showcase of the burgeoning Gretchen Mol.
  9. In the end, there's enough movie magic in The Prestige to keep you guessing, even after the film's over.
  10. What gives Notorious its staying power is what happens before AND after its hero's death.
  11. What makes the "Dolittle" movies stand out from this menagerie is the superb casting and matching of the animals and their human voices.
  12. There is undeniable power in Magnolia, in which small moments of truth are given epic gravitas, not just by Anderson's adroit cinematic style (no one's camera is more restless or inquisitive), but by the wisdom and compassion of the characters he creates.
  13. The sensuousness of Lemon Tree is its glory.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    It has enough humanity to let the humor tickle, and a subject that will evoke memories for anyone who has ever smoked a joint or just said no.
  14. A quietly resonant movie about the painful alliance between single mothers and their daughters, and the complicated drama of separation.
    • Baltimore Sun
  15. If you have a sneaky taste for the monstrous and a hearty appetite for the outlandish, the pulpy yet engaging Night Watch should leave you merrily sated.
  16. Isn't nearly the landmark comedy it thinks it is, but its quirkiness should appeal to the highbrow funny bone in all of us.
    • Baltimore Sun
  17. Weitz doesn't manage Pullman's feat of being rational and magical simultaneously. But he rapidly and intelligently opens up Pullman's world.
  18. The movie has a vibrant, sturdy pathos in the manner of Dickens.
  19. The year's most unsettling movie experience - and in this case, that's a very good thing.
  20. The Beautiful Country is not a happy film by any means, but it does offer a fragile hope, that beauty exists at the end of every journey, if only one has the strength to finish the trip.
  21. The real hero here is Ghobadi, whose love and respect for the culture in which he was raised shines through every frame.
  22. But the fine performances of all three leads rise above the cliches, giving the film a sense of reality that both impresses and inspires.
  23. Ben Affleck and Gwyneth Paltrow are so immensely appealing, and their chemistry together is so unforced, that their presence alone makes a movie worth seeing. Thankfully, Bounce has even more going for it.
    • Baltimore Sun
  24. Latifah's performance and the film's gentle heart should prove enough to win over even the most churlish.
  25. This movie leaves 'em laughing - and gasping.
  26. Shower makes for a lovely and poignant journey.
  27. At its best, the movie combines the musical and psychological meanings of a fugue. Sons and daughters and mother take up themes of dislocation and identity loss, and deepen them at every turn.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    La Promesse...presents an unflinching view of the victimization of vulnerable people, but the center of the film is not the immigrant experience. It is the portrayal of a father-son relationship and that turning point where a child must choose between a loved parent and his own sense of morality.
  28. Chaos, in miring itself in the inequities (not to mention obscenities) of male-dominated culture, is after greater truths.
  29. Wastes amusing beginnings.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    You don't have to be a Metallica junkie to get this film.
  30. So understatedly good.
  31. Looming large over all this is Jackson, who glowers and growls and acts the hero better than any actor out there.
  32. There's a persistent innocence to this movie that will work wonders on all but the most churlish.
  33. This is not a great film by any means, too filled with stock characters in stock situations for such praise. But if offers screen time for some fine young actresses, and addresses its story to an audience of teen girls who deserve something to identify with.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Gordon deserves credit for at least attempting to deal with political themes, and the tension isn't bad either.
  34. A film that immerses its audience in the Indian culture while telling a universally appealing story of grace under pressure.
    • Baltimore Sun
  35. Whenever its noble aims miss, Bruce Willis saves it.
  36. Siegel takes us to the brink of operatic melodrama, then lands us in a tragicomic spot: a psychological landscape of alternate life and make-believe death.
  37. The performers are tremendous, particularly Deschanel, who can travel to the end of an emotional tether and then suggest the mysteries of change and growth that lie beyond.
  38. Bening's performance makes up for a lot of deficiencies.
  39. Grisly, stylish and often weirdly funny, Blood Simple is a reminder of how rarely an original artistic sensibility is announced to the world and how much better movies are when that sensibility is allowed to keep going its own way.
    • Baltimore Sun
  40. It's easier to accept a breakup when it's clear that the two parties are mismatched, but a better, braver film would reveal what caused the initial attraction.
  41. The movie conveys the drama of the moment but eschews context. The result is an arresting yet frustrating experience.
  42. The best sections of Flushed Away, those featuring a nefarious French operative known as Le Frog (a hilarious Jean Reno), are also the most peculiarly British; no one lampoons the French with a better mixture of hard-earned loathing and grudging respect than the Brits.
  43. A comic-book rock band starring in a film that actually makes a point? Now that's something worth singing about.
    • Baltimore Sun
  44. The symmetry doesn't work. Capitalism is an economic system; democracy, a political system. Perhaps Moore should have come out and said what he really wants to see us adopt: a democratic socialism.
  45. Without restraint or subtlety, but with a lot of heart and energy, this movie tells a real-life tall tale.
  46. Madagascar doesn't do much, except make you laugh. All hail such a minimalist approach.
  47. Malibu's Most Wanted mines a well-worn comedic vein, but does so with a consistent good humor and surprisingly deft touch.
  48. For anyone who has ever had to balance what the heart yearns for against what the head insists must be, this film should hit home.
  49. True, the movie tends toward the treacly at times, and the children's mischievousness seems a bit forced. But Thompson's turn as a glammed-down Mary Poppins with an even more no-nonsense attitude is hard to resist.
  50. Keeps its eye on the big picture even when focusing on the small scene.
    • Baltimore Sun
  51. There's a lot of talk about sex in Sidewalks of New York, but precious little of it. And that's part of the point.
    • Baltimore Sun
  52. Craven's films aren't showy, but that should never be held against them. In their streamlined construction and rock-solid simplicity lay their brilliance.
  53. Light, engaging documentary.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Some of the most affecting moments in the film show Bukowski walking the streets of his Los Angeles, a barren suburban hell, as he reads his poems and the words appear on and then fade from the screen.
  54. The Crow, the death-haunted, mega-violent, pulpy, vigorous final film of Brandon Lee, may not qualify as much of a monument to a lost life -- what film could? -- but it's a hell of a movie.
  55. Let's get Sarandon and Jones into another movie soon; they're wonderful. Schumacher can direct and there's probably even a part for Brad Renfro. As for Grisham, he needs a course in remedial plotting.
  56. What's not to love?
  57. Whenever the movie threatens to become just another visit to hillbilly-land, the music starts up and the film's gentle, irresistible wonder takes hold. Songcatcher is a film very much worth catching.
    • Baltimore Sun
  58. An enjoyably complex sci-fi suspense thriller.
    • Baltimore Sun
  59. The movie contains few surprises but has plenty of heart.
  60. The film has a lot of right in it, including an ending that's suitably uncertain, but fraught with possibilities.
    • Baltimore Sun
  61. At times, Sex and Lucia is too precious for its own good; a movie that demands its own flow chart isn't always a good thing. And events turn on one coincidence too many. But Medem's exquisite craftsmanship and full-throttle eroticism make his film a morass worth the attempt to unravel.
    • Baltimore Sun
  62. Clearly a spiritual descendant of the old Looney Toons cartoons; it's not hard to imagine Daffy, Bugs, Porky and their pals in the starring roles here. And that's a cinematic pedigree worth cherishing.
    • Baltimore Sun
  63. A murder caper that could have been written by Agatha Christie during a pub-crawl.
    • Baltimore Sun
  64. As Laura, Rueda hits sublime notes of confusion, grief and wrath. She's sympathetic enough to make you root for her and complex enough to get you arguing afterward about whether Laura did anything to deserve all this.
  65. The cast of Rain is first-rate, especially Wierzbicki and Peirse, whose tense relationship is as loving as it is competitive.
    • Baltimore Sun
  66. Veggie Tales is one amusing salad.
    • Baltimore Sun
  67. Benton's version of The Human Stain feels under-energized and modest to a fault. Yet it still delivers a genuine sad sting.
  68. A cautionary tale that's harrowing, heartbreaking and -- especially given the times, when Americans seem all-too-ready to once again judge people as a threat solely by their appearance -- disturbingly resonant.
    • Baltimore Sun
  69. At its best, Tropic Thunder wrings divine madness from wretched excess.
  70. Ultimately, the film can't help but disappoint. Movies where you're continually waiting for the other shoe to drop are never as much fun as those where you never expected the first one to fall.
    • Baltimore Sun
  71. A sensational date movie.
  72. Romance, intrigue and old-fashioned movie glamour make a dazzling return in Girl on the Bridge, Patrice Leconte's sumptuous love story with a razor-sharp edge.
    • Baltimore Sun
  73. Arrives as a balm to seared adult psyches that have endured all manner of assaults at the multiplex this season.
  74. The only character with any personality in The Grudge is a Tokyo house, but not to worry - it's got enough mean in it to keep any horror movie afloat.
  75. Pucci pulls off Justin's transformation without resorting to histrionics; it's like a radio-station signal finally coming in clearly.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Much of Light It Up has a familiar feel. But there are enough redeeming insights to make the time you spend at this school worthwhile.
  76. A kinetically charged gridiron drama that is enormous fun to watch.
    • Baltimore Sun
  77. Jewison's focus on the Canadians' dogged do-gooderism might have actually prevented a good movie from being a great one.
    • Baltimore Sun
  78. Some adults may find the film unbearably simplistic, or its pace burdensomely slow. But it would be a shame if movie audiences have become so hyper-adrenalized that they can't appreciate a charmer like Curious George.
  79. Lively and inspirational, with terrific performances from a big star and a host of supporting players.
  80. Tells an important story about a story that might never have been told at all.
  81. Almodovar has created an ecstatic homage to the women who have inspired him all his life.
    • Baltimore Sun
  82. It may not tell us anything about terror in the new millennium, but the filmmakers' work is solid and affecting. In its own over-emphatic, sometimes clumsy way, it can move an audience to tears, cathartic laughs and cheers.
  83. Nobody does this stuff better than Disney, and there's plenty here to like.
    • Baltimore Sun
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Love, however implausible, is simply beautiful in Venus.
    • Baltimore Sun
  84. Washington is wisely cast as Marco; few actors command more instant respect, and the movie uses that to make his character both believable and sympathetic.
  85. This flight of fancy stays aloft on the power of its acting and its atmosphere.
  86. But there's a discomfiting side to her comic riffs, because in our all-too-concerned-with-image society, they ring far too true.
    • Baltimore Sun
  87. A campy riot of retro cool, a warm and fuzzy ode to the '70s buddy cops.
  88. "Happy Accidents" should retire Tomei's status as part of a show-biz urban legend and establish her once and for all as one of our most versatile and engaging performers.
    • Baltimore Sun
  89. An absorbing glimpse not only at the phenomenon of punk rock but also at British social history and the rock star mystique.
    • Baltimore Sun
  90. An engaging yarn and a moving character study, but it's also a sweet, sad glimpse of everyone's future.
  91. The movie needs more incident and complication; it's modest to a fault.
  92. You won't want to miss it if you care about movies that dare to chart intimacies in our age of spectacle, or about up-and-coming female performers and underused male veterans finding roles worthy of their gifts.

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