Boston Globe's Scores

For 5,239 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 0.6 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Bamako
Lowest review score: 0 The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)
Score distribution:
5,239 movie reviews
  1. Earle's song introductions, like those of his mentors Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark, are as meaty, pointed, and touching as the tunes themselves, and his spoken words -- full of humor and humanity -- are the heart of the film.
  2. The film is faithful to its absurdities, sometimes hilariously so.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The joy is in the details, and they are unrelentingly comic.
  3. The movie is like an extra-strength episode of MTV's ''Diary,'' which is like ''A&E Biography'' in the first person. Only ''Resurrection'' has a subject who's been dead for six years.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A honey, but your response to it may depend on where you fall on life's big curve.
  4. There's scarcely any dialogue, and the "hukkle" sound is universal enough to make subtitles unnecessary and to please an audience of any age and attention span.
  5. The performances by Plotnick, Leupp, and Roberson comprise a jarring special effect.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Looks brilliant while you're watching it and stands revealed as counterfeit only in the strong light of day. What Baldwin does, though, is the stuff of supporting actor Oscars.
  6. It takes almost an hour for The Legend of Leigh Bowery to make a case for Bowery's sort of genius, and in the last third, the movie gives a real sense of what made him him.
  7. A tidy soap opera. But it's a discreet, warmly made one, too. In a show of restraint, the intrigue never rises above mildly juicy.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Even if you think Cruise has never had a moment of doubt in his life, he makes Nathan's self-loathing palpable, and the character's regeneration has a hoarse, cautious purposefulness that's striking.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Dancing on the edge of dullness, ''Girl'' is continually saved by the look of things: the hush of an atelier in midafternoon, dust-motes swirling in a sunbeam, pigment blooming under mortar and pestle. Impatience is forestalled, time and again, by rapture.
  8. Part Marxist social drama and part Michael Moore corporation-needling, with fed-up residents trying to outsmart the big, bad naive company to keep their lights on for free.
  9. The reliable Mike Newell directs Mona Lisa Smile with such assurance that the important moments are never mawkish or dull, and he encourages the women to act with absolute conviction.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A gruesome, helpless spiral barely saved by an actress locating humanity where few would have cared to bother.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    All Peter Pan lacks is a Peter Pan with any discernible personality, no matter that Jeremy Sumpter is the first actual, genetic boy to play the role on film.
  10. If Millennium Mambo is the only chance to see Hou Hsaio-hsien's work at a movie theater, you'd better take it.
  11. Aileen is Broomfield working compassionately. Perhaps it's only because he knows he can't save Wuornos that he can offer her as she might have been: part wounded animal, part self-destructive martyr, and all tragedy.
  12. Demonstrates an idiosyncratic human touch. Kon is unafraid of the unseemly and unsightly. People are captured as they really might be.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Sometimes it gets into arcane talk of equipment that makes more sense for a Berklee College of Music engineering class than for a mass-market movie -- but as a probing look at a really nice-guy genius in the studio world, it succeeds admirably.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Less striking for its storyline than for the world it presents -- a rural moonscape of coal-dust, casual environmental disaster, and atavistic behavior.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The Dreamers isn't that bad -- actually, it's funny, affecting, interestingly twisted, and seriously erotic before it heads south in the final stretch.
  13. The last word in good-time mayhem.
  14. In Robot Stories, technology hasn't colonized human life, it's finding ways to make living (and loving) better.
  15. Lively and beautiful filmmaking. It may leave you scratching your head, but it shouldn't leave you cold.
  16. Gathers a sort of darkness as it comes to its oblique conclusion.
  17. What's unique about this documentary is that it grips history with both hands, shakes it, examines it, and exits with the entire wrinkled contents bravely in tow.
  18. There is a lot to recommend about James' Journey to Jerusalem. Its people are not among them. This searing little parable contains some of the more deplorable folks you're likely to see in a movie about faith.
  19. A jokey, junky potboiler.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    When Spartan is good, it's surprisingly gripping and fresh, and when it's bad, it's just another overcooked Hollywood paranoid thriller.
  20. This intimate, warmly made family portrait always feels true. The performances are particularly good.
  21. It is at least an "experience" that has to be labeled exhilarating.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    This is the art-film Carrey: repressed, lovesick, unshaven. Essentially he's doing the same intellectual sad sack played by John Cusack in "Malkovich" and Nicolas Cage in "Adaptation"
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Could fairly be described as a Robert Altman ensemble movie without the flab, or "Magnolia" with a mean streak and bigger laughs.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The film's comic observations are rich, droll, and more than a little sad: Everyone in this isolated community seems beaten down by life.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    This is a film lover's film, and as if to underscore the point, Bon Voyage opens and closes in a movie theater.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    So forget about taking anyone under 12. But if you want to see what a benign demon looks like when he's eating nachos and unwinding to Al Green, this is the movie for you.
  22. This is a smart piece of revisionist fluff that dares to question what happens after the royal honeymoon is over.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    So spectacularly bent that it exudes a contact cough-syrup high all its own.
  23. The movie's queer delight is contagious. You'll exit lip-synching.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Morlang is a repressed creep whose worst crime, as far as the audience is concerned, is dullness.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The anti-"Kill Bill." This is an old man's movie in all the good ways: gentle, humanistic, rich with observation, quietly aware of all that can't be solved by the sword.
  24. The movie is always entertaining and frequently smart about the new ground one girl will break to humiliate another.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Smartly filmed (aside from a few distracting editing fripperies), but it's so dazzled by its subject and saddened by his martyrdom that it never moves past the heroic politics of dissent.
  25. Angry and tragic, Carandiru is finally, in its own way, uplifting.
  26. At the heart of most of these encounters is talk about the nature of relationships -- cousins, twins, and peers. Mostly, though, Jarmusch displays an unexpected interest in the ironies and banalities of fame.
  27. Hardship and suffering don't drive this movie so much as a romantic's gloss on the two.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    What works best in Shrek 2 are the smaller roles, the pile-driving pop-culture jokes, and the moments of weird, early-Mad-magazine comic invention.
  28. Part of what hooks you to this movie is how Leth outsmarts his taskmaster, and how the two men have divergent, almost incompatible aesthetic ideals.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    In reality, it's messy in the way that life is, and with a rare and welcome obstreperousness.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    For fans of African music, "Sing" is a rich archeological dig; for newcomers with open ears, it might be a revelation.
  29. The mother-child dynamic here is the fraught stuff of any worthy melodrama.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    For every line of dialogue that's truly, glitteringly acid, though, there are five that are merely clever, and Lee, likable as he is, never really taps into the misery of the teen misfit.
  30. At its most effective, the movie is a chastening, sobering, and thorough work of film journalism, however shortsighted.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Imelda is at its most acridly useful when comparing the former first lady's recollections with others' less sanguine memories.
  31. It's hilarious -- and on purpose, too. This is the first satisfying adult summer comedy set in New England to come out of Hollywood since "The Witches of Eastwick" in 1987.
  32. Ben Stiller is like a guy on the 1919 White Sox. He's rigged to lose. His comedy is the stuff of failure, and sometimes it's pleasurable watching him flit around in funny get-ups, only to have a pretty costar put him down.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Here's a film made by grown-ups for grown-ups, on grown-up themes of statelessness and belonging. Yet you could show it to a 6-year-old and have him or her understand all the nuances of plot and characterization.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    An inspired dead-end stunt that keeps delivering snarky laughs far longer than it has any right to.
  33. It's the videotaped equivalent of a primary research data dump. But to quote Bette Davis by way of Edward Albee: What a dump.
  34. Where a lesser movie from a lesser director might sink into its own ponderousness, Sokurov uses the ambiguity of the father and son's relationship to craft a sort of erotic puzzle.
  35. The endearing and cheeky ensemble works hard, and Ken Scott's script finds ways of wringing irreverence from the apparent good nature of the situation.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    One last thought: Fahrenheit 9/11 is many things, but for pity's sake let's not call it a documentary.
  36. Raimi seems more comfortable being his outlandishly jokey, B-movie self, letting entire sequences play on the line between carefree schlock and Hollywood blockbusting.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Turns out to be thoughtful, creative, and generally worthy of its subject, with sins that are more of ambition and miscalculation than of execution.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    ''Bonjour" is especially lucky in having Shlomi Bar-Dayan, the 16-year-old misfit of the title, played by a young actor named Oshri Cohen, who's able to convey the impossibility of ever making sense of the world with a single bruised gaze.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The way Greengrass lets you feel the violence is impressive. Most movie heroes punch through armies without scraping their knuckles, but Bourne's a believable wreck by midpoint.
  37. Bobby marks a turning point for Colin Farrell, whose vulgarities and inelegance tend to get the better of his range.
  38. The ideas are generous and inclusive rather than divisive: Zinn wants history to be seen and to be experienced from every possible perspective.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The first "Candidate" was inspired pop art, a two-dimensional coloring book about 1962 America's subterranean political fears. Demme's film is more nuanced, less crazy-brilliant and, yes, probably less necessary, but it's still a confirmation of all the anxieties out there on the table and festering in our heads.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    When all is said and done, the movie's a steaming plate of corn -- and, indeed, that's part of the pleasure. Myles, though, delivers a fine comic performance with no strings attached.
  39. Spellbinding if ponderous.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Extraordinary.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The latest and most creatively unhinged film from director Takashi Miike.
  40. Penn's Kumar could become Jeff Spicoli for the generation of college kids who've never seen "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" but always seem to have a copy of "Dude, Where's My Car?" cued up at a moment's notice.
  41. Actually an above-average farce, at least as featherweight chick flicks go.
  42. There is no plot in Pen-ek Ratanaruang's exceedingly mellow situation comedy, and that's preferred, frankly.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A hardly fair, not especially balanced broadside that has the advantage of being correct.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Acridly funny.
  43. The Brown Bunny is certainly about how vain Gallo is. Yet rarely has narcissism produced such a handsome work of cinema.
  44. These people may be really, really dangerous, but they're also really, really polite.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Where most documentaries offer us facts to hold on to, his (McElwee's) are obsessed with the mystery of things we don't know and never will.
  45. Just as exciting and socially vivid as Bielinsky's. Yet, somehow it's more stressful. The American characters practically sweat desperation.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    For someone wanting to get noticed as a filmmaker, George Lucas couldn't have done much better than THX 1138, his 1971 feature debut that starts a limited run today in a new director's cut.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    No one has really been asking for a fusion of "Independence Day," Fritz Lang's "Metropolis," and an old Buck Rogers serial, but here it is anyway, and the only thing keeping it from greatness is a good story.
  46. Brims with forboding, but it pulses with candy colors and the hum of neon signs.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Once the cat is out of the bag, "Incident" becomes simultaneously entertaining and disappointing.
  47. Every moment... is a cleverly constructed live-action joke on aloofness: The world is ending, and these people are too self-centered to notice.
  48. A big, lascivious punch line about America's peculiar, embarrassed, hypocritical relationship with sex.
  49. This movie could have been a nagging, preachy headache had either man exhibited a tendency for self-righteousness. But both are friendly, almost humble about their mischief.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Begins and ends as a fulsome Kerry campaign bio along the lines of the famed Bill Clinton convention short, "The Man From Hope."
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    It also bears something you rarely experience in a football movie. Friday Night Lights has a soul.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Shane Carruth's extraordinary work of shoestring speculation throws you into a deep ocean of techno-jargon and lets you dog-paddle or sink like a stone.
  50. It makes a sane, civil, humanist case for marriage for all.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Of all the "Liaisons" adaptations, this may be the most sentimental.
  51. Gere is a pleasure, smiling and spinning and high-fiving his two classmates -- played by Bobby Cannavale and Omar Miller -- and the movie is happy and extremely likable.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    You can feel her (Bening) drag Being Julia uphill for an hour and a half until the final 15 minutes, when the ground finally levels out and the picture becomes fine, vengeful fun.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A rigorous and bracingly charming movie about moviemaking.
  52. Technically outstanding and the performances are strong.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A very good drama about the difficulties of being young, black, and gay. With a bigger budget and a sharper focus, it might have been a great one.

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