Boston Globe's Scores

For 5,352 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 0.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Citizenfour
Lowest review score: 0 Gigli
Score distribution:
5,352 movie reviews
  1. A one-trick action thriller that feels like a poor cousin of an episode of ''24." Call it ''12."
  2. The fundamental value put forth in Brown’s “Sunday” sequel is not fearlessness but “family.”
    • 41 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Almost but not quite as obnoxious as its title. Little kids will love it. You’ll need a hazmat suit.
  3. It seems endless. It's also unusually crude and stupid, even for an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The bad news, for those looking forward to The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause with anything like enthusiasm, is this: Bernard the Elf is history.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    In this bilingual morality movie about love, family, and fate, however, the unpredictability turns out to be highly predictable.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    21
    The movie's chief audience, consequently, will probably be gullible and young, responding to the cliches only because they haven't seen them before. They have a word in Vegas for these people: Suckers.
  4. Dukakis gets off some of the film's best lines and keeps the worst from sinking the whole affair; Polley's role is limited, but her character's audition for a feminine hygiene commercial is by far the best thing here.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    2 1/2 hours of tumescence disguised as a motion picture.
  5. Cox doesn’t so much chew the scenery as inhale it. Dano looks on in awe.
  6. Franco can be exhilarating in movies -- tremulous, unhinged, a little wild. Here his jaw never stops quivering and his eyes stay welled up, advertising a breakdown that never comes. Not that Myles has a presence a man would fall apart over. She's too professional to drive anybody crazy.
  7. Eckhart doesn’t really do any of that classic grunting as Frankenstein 2.0, but maybe he should have.
  8. It's actually a pretty lousy thriller.
  9. The film logs almost all of its laughs when it's at its crudest, meanest, and most unfiltered. Everything else - and that is to say most of the movie - is a big, fat, derivative waste of time.
  10. Occasionally wills itself to rude, crude life. But most of the time it's pretty limp.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Hints at a place where desire, fear, pleasure, and power all intersect, but it never actually goes there.
  11. Finding Home is well meant and earnest but is stretched to almost twice what would have been a comfortable length.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Butter dearly wants to be a hot-button social satire that plays rough with sacred cows: Midwestern power-moms, the religious right, race, sex, you name it. Mostly, it wants to be an Alexander Payne movie from the 1990s. "Citizen Ruth," say, or "Election." Instead, it's a shrill, cartoonish mess.
  12. The tame, confused script eventually sinks the film, although Field shows skill directing actors.
    • Boston Globe
  13. Seeing her (Kidman) in junk like this is a bit like watching the Queen of England eat a Taco Bell chalupa.
  14. Noe's summation is an ideological sucker-punch from a filmmaker who gets off on abusive relationships. He may as well have thrown a big ''whatever'' up on the screen.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A "great poet" movie, the poet in this case being Dylan Thomas, and it's utter bollocks.
  15. The horrible anticipation he [Aja] builds is derailed by a gimmick that makes the twist in, say, ''Fight Club" seem perfectly logical. To say more would be to ruin the movie, and why should I do that when its own makers have done it for you?
  16. The limp script actually has the characters spout ''Let's get outta here!'' more than once. Or maybe that's just a wise member of the audience talking.
  17. It’s just like the Kenny Rogers song says: “You’ve got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em.” It’s time for this Gambler to walk away.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A noisy and lazy stopgap movie that goes absolutely nowhere and takes 2 1/2 hours to get there.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Primeval is a hoot if you're in the mood, though, and it gets points for trying to stuff a little globo-think into the minds of Friday night mayhem fans (who will probably rebel, since only one skull pops like a grape).
    • 50 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Not good enough to take seriously and, sadly, not bad enough to be any fun.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Big Eyes may not be Tim Burton’s absolute worst movie — we’ll always have “Planet of the Apes” — but it’s pretty close to the bottom. It’s also the film that reveals his weaknesses as a director and, by their absence, his strengths. Gaudy, shallow, shrill, smug, the movie proves beyond a whisker of doubt that Burton has little interest in human beings unless they can be reduced to cartoons.
  18. At the very least, a movie like this requires coherence to stay afloat. Barring that, it needs a star to distract us.
  19. The one-sidedness of Farmageddon isn't just an artistic failing. It's an argumentative failing, too.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Del Toro does remind you of Brando here; unfortunately, it's the Brando of ''Apocalypse Now,'' the one with the green face and puffy line readings. Jones fares better, even if he wears the same grieving-for-humanity expression throughout the film.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    A veritable rip-off of 1995's "The Usual Suspects," Beach's crime caper not-so-subtly apes Bryan Singer's use of multiple red herrings and flashback-heavy interrogation scenes, but lacks the stylistic flair and sophisticated narrative skills to pull off a similar feat of cinematic intrigue.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Works hard to give quirk a bad name.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    It was possible to hope that Blade II would turn out to be good. Well, forget it.
  20. Nothing works. Or some of it works, but that doesn't matter because what's working is so deeply, painfully boring.
  21. Audiences are going to want to brace themselves, too – for a movie that refuses to recognize when it’s going too far, with its wince-eliciting jokes about jailhouse rape in particular.
  22. It's not boring to watch, but in the end it's too lame and too tame. [21 Apr 1995]
    • Boston Globe
    • 30 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    If most December movie releases are epic-length and Oscar-ambitious, then Punisher: War Zone has to be considered Hobbesian counterprogramming: It's nasty, brutish, and short.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Young children and adults with high pain thresholds will enjoy the movie during its brief pause on the way to your On Demand menu.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    It must have looked great on paper. On screen, it’s a soapy mess that even Joan Crawford in her delusional late-period prime couldn’t save.
  23. Some bad movies can make you feel awful for the people who made them and worse for the audience that shows up. The actors, the script, the camera: There's nowhere good they can go. For Greater Glory is that kind of bad movie: a total embarrassment.
  24. Unlike most of what Moore has been in, Dedication is unlikely to delight retirement homes on movie night. But it's not imaginative, lively, or true enough to speak to its intended audience of American Apparel shoppers, either. It's a slog.
  25. The most popular facial expression for victims in The Grudge 2 is something I'd like to call "deep befuddlement." This time "deep befuddlement" goes double for paying customers.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Watching Arthur and the Invisibles is like sticking your head in a Gallic pinball machine: It's hectic, technically impressive, and your skull starts to pound after a while.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A torpidly precious love story about death-obsessed adolescents, the film's becalmed and embalmed in its own sensitive self-pity.
  26. The Hollywood version of one of those fawning "60 Minutes" segments about musical prodigies. For most of it, I could hear the congested awe of Morley Safer.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A peppy, fast-moving, wafer-thin amusement that's fine for kids if you don't mind a lot of Three Stooges-style martial arts. For grown-ups, it's the equivalent of a 59-cent tin globe.
  27. Isn't going to be a contender
  28. It plays better as exasperating comedy than genuine horror -- although there is something terrifying about being stuck in a movie whose idea of a bogeyman is a scarecrow with an eating disorder.
  29. If Bunraku were serious about subverting or reinventing the genres it's cobbled together, Moore would play the gunslinger or the samurai or the crime boss. But no. All she gets are a couple of scenes that demonstrate that she still looks great soaking wet.
  30. The young cast comes through with appealing, naturalistic performances. But Weber’s programmatic, preachy story and emotional manipulation is so blatant that it verges on the fatuous.
  31. Avalanches are nothing compared to the deadening touch of the stereotyping and audience-insulting simplicities in the scenic but brain-dead Vertical Limit.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Noisy, silly, gratingly upbeat, and piously sentimental, 'Cheaper by the Dozen 2 is what passes for wholesome family entertainment these days. It's the sort of movie to send small children and grandparents out of the theater hugging each other and strong men in search of bourbon.
  32. Perhaps Employee of the Month, which was typed then directed by Greg Coolidge, is unfolding in the key of satire. But you'd have to be a dog to hear it.
  33. Human trafficking is an awful societal issue, and Trade happens to be an awful movie about human trafficking.
  34. It's a lame and painfully overextended satire of homophobia.
    • Boston Globe
  35. Funny about retribution, though - it's a tricky thing to make time for when you've still got mutant zombie hordes after you. The real premise turns out to be a busy rehash of the first movie's story line.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The top-secret message this pigeon is carrying reads ''Wait for the DVD."
  36. What the Hughes brothers have come up with is, to borrow another phrase from that bygone age, a penny dreadful.
    • Boston Globe
  37. It’s like Bob Fosse night at the martial-arts studio. Most of the killing here is done with bladed throwing stars that, like the ninjas themselves, arrive from nowhere. They appear to have been used to edit the film as well.
  38. The Bounty Hunter does give Christine Baranski, as an Atlantic City entertainer and Mama Aniston, another opportunity to enthrall us with her drag-queenliness.
  39. Berlinger has approached Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 with intelligence and even a bit of thematic heft. But, frankly, the cheap thrill is gone.
    • Boston Globe
    • 24 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Always the way in horror flicks: These first scenes, when the characters are being tenderly established and the concept is still young, are the best.
  40. Because Spun is so plotless it's almost avant-garde, we're meant to be delighted with its assortment of set pieces.
  41. Drillbit Taylor sounds like a rediscovered blaxploitation movie or a name near the top of the NFL draft.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    When actors are as great as De Niro and Pacino, watching them in a movie like Righteous Kill is deadly.
  42. Dylan and Nikki are an awkward match at best, and their combined story is about as creative/convincing as a Hallmark card.
  43. The best thing in Meet the Spartans is the swift kick in the bombast it delivers to the oh-no-not-us homoeroticism of "300."
  44. It’s unclear what Amy Adams did to deserve Leap Year, but all that’s missing from the movie is a set of jailhouse bars over her scenes.
  45. With a plot devoid of suspense and characters without complexity, Rand's iconic line elicits merely a yawn, or a shrug.
  46. Offers cliches instead of chills.
  47. Creaky, earnest melodrama.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    An attempt to turn the 2005 nonfiction bestseller into a high-energy docu-romp, Freakonomics is a misconceived botch.
  48. The movie is swept up in earnest self-importance.
  49. How funny that Pryce, a tweedy Brit playing a bad guy, should be the one person doing anything remotely heroic for this dud.
  50. Bertrand does his jelly-belly best to keep Starbuck a comedy. But even the broadest shtick can’t prevent a movie that features a Busby Berkeley-style group hug from becoming a male weepie. Or a testimonial to Planned Parenthood.
  51. The screenplay, with its relentlessly schematic characters saying relentlessly schematic things, is so moronic that it makes you long for a documentary on the real Cape League.
  52. Unfortunately, Mann also leans on ill-fitting story elements that he might easily and smartly have avoided, and the movie’s rhythms and credibility pay for it.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Perhaps because Campbell is a purist at heart, My Name Is Bruce is as awful as anything he has done - a broadly silly gore comedy in which no gag is too cartoonish to be indulged in at least once and preferably three times.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    It's a disappointingly limp small-town farce played several shades too broadly by a cast that has done better work elsewhere.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    When is a comedy not a comedy? When it’s not all that funny.
  53. For better and worse, the movie is more attractive and competently assembled than its schlock peers. That's refreshing, but it hardly excuses the appalling lack of suspense, intermittent tastelessness, or shockingly low camp quotient.
  54. Aside from the clever punning of the title, Spare Parts ends up as jury-rigged and programmatic as Stinky, the robot in the movie. And, unlike Stinky, it is dead in the water.
  55. Almost nothing works in this movie.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The greater embarrassment is that so many millions of dollars have been wasted on an entertainment that feels so smug, so pointless, and so thunderously empty.
  56. Thunder falls into the common mistake of many children’s films — it underestimates its audience.
  57. In the end, the thing that Cussler's fans will probably object to most is the nonsensical way Sahara manhandles his story.
    • 13 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Innocuous amusement for 5- to 8-year-olds and other people stuck in the anal stage of development.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    All that's missing is coherence. Call it Blunderbuss Satire.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    So unfocused is Shonda Rhimes's screenplay and so flabby is Marshall's direction.
  58. It can seem sometimes that Hollywood has a monopoly on stupid, obnoxious comedy. Anyone who sees Klown will learn otherwise. Comedy can be just as stupid and obnoxious in Danish.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    We haven't had a good Frankenstein, Dracula, or Wolf Man movie in a long time, so here's one where the whole gang shows up. One catch: It's not good.
  59. It tries to bridge the gap between pop culture and cultural elitism, between high art and the common commodity that everyone else buys tickets to see. A worthy goal, but it results in a movie that has none of the virtues of either.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 38 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Silly, obvious, clumsy, and just gruesome enough to keep jaded genre fans from angrily throwing popcorn at the screen.
  60. Oranges and Sunshine is like a Mike Leigh movie drained of all its bodily fluids.
  61. Almost all mainstream movies steal from other movies, but the better ones get away with it because they possess some distinctive identity. The best that Ken Scott’s Unfinished Business can come up with is Vince Vaughn — as the straight man.
  62. A sodden-looking film.
    • Boston Globe
  63. This story could have gone in a number of more inspiring allegorical directions but winds up your average bedtime story instead.
  64. Ignore the hype. You won't find anything startling or memorable in the derivative Hide and Seek.

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