Boston Globe's Scores

For 5,451 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 Dig!
Lowest review score: 0 Gigli
Score distribution:
5,451 movie reviews
  1. You'll care what happens in this film with more than enough freshness and originality to avoid succumbing to girls-on-the-run cliches.
  2. A tender genuflection to the women's energies that keep that spinning world from keeling over.
    • 94 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Yet what I felt when the lights came up at the end of this visionary, titanic, relentless experience was something different: a strange relief that it was, at last, over.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    One of those lovely little movies that starts out being about a handful of people and ends up being about all of us. That’s a tricky act to pull off and the talented writer-director Ira Sachs stumbles occasionally over moments of self-conscious lyricism. But then the film recovers its balance, looks at its characters with fondness and with faith, and quietly soars.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    An engrossing and enraging drama of one chimpanzee and his life's journey across a landscape of human folly.
  3. It's a meditation on life and death, but it's less somber and more light-handed, subtle, and mischievously funny.
    • Boston Globe
  4. Volver brims with personal and cinematic allusions, but no one hungry for a well-told tale from a master storyteller is required to understand them.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Poised at the midway point between an ultraviolent video game and a neo-classic dance musical. As midnight-movie mash-ups go, it's pretty amazing.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Such smart, whiz-bang fun that you may not realize what it's about until you're safely home.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Feels both masterful and hesitant - it’s the work of a born filmmaker who’s still not quite sure what she wants to say.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Poetic, surreal, and curiously powerful.
    • Boston Globe
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    For all its pessimism, the movie prompts a viewer to search his or her own memories for actions rather than reactions, and to mull over the differences between the two. It's a dark little ride, but at the end the lights hesitantly flicker back on.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    It’s a movie that floods you with emotion when you least expect it.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Cantet's script and direction are flawless, and, matched step-for-step by Jocelyn Pook's mournful score, he builds the tension to near unbearable levels.
  5. It's slick, sleek, and stylish, and if it doesn't quite redefine cool, it certainly offers a snazzy update.
    • Boston Globe
  6. The movie takes the ABBA jukebox musical that ate London, and is still eating Broadway, and turns it into a surprisingly sensuous experience.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A Hijacking tells a simple story whose ripples ultimately turn into tidal waves.
  7. There was little mirth or innocence in the world that Wharton was able to write her way out of (she was much happier living in Paris), and Davies and his leading lady lift the silks to reveal it as the minefield it was.
    • Boston Globe
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    War Witch deals with a reality so horrific that the film’s touches of magical realism are welcome, even necessary — the only way to retain one’s bearings and sanity in a world without signposts.
  8. You expect virtuosic technique from Spielberg, and it's there, in spades. What you don't expect is heartfelt romanticism. But that's there, too... Always is a terrific-looking throwback to those large-scale '40s cinematic stews of romantic longing. [22 Dec. 1989, p.43]
    • Boston Globe
  9. The season's brightest piece of counterprogramming.
  10. The Pillow Book is Peter Greenaway's most stunning and accessible film since "The Cook, the Thief, His Wife and Her Lover." Dense, gorgeous and inexorable - once you give yourself over to its logic - it's a boldly erotic explosion of Asian chic, taken to places no film has gone before. [20 Jun 1997]
    • Boston Globe
  11. It's refreshing to see Gondry's moviemaking still possessed by the community spirit he caught a few years ago with "Dave Chappelle's Block Party."
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    It's a honey of a performance: controlled, achingly human, and funny in the deepest ways.
  12. The film works because Raimi's motor-rhythmed pop sensibility was ready to take off in this movie, and does, in a series of wonderfully hyperkinetic comic-strip lurches. [24 Aug. 1990, p.34]
    • Boston Globe
  13. As full of joy as pain, it's a perspective we need to see more often.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Pixar is so good at what it does that every other kiddie-entertainment purveyor -- including parent company Disney -- flounders in comparison.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Creative, colorful, and unexpectedly wise, The Painting is the latest offshore animation to show to kids burned out on computer-generated Hollywood toons.
  14. Stark, haunting, epic, and mournful, The Claim is a mountain of a film.
    • Boston Globe
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Polite but emotionally devastating, How I Killed My Father throws such questions out like smart bombs, and they detonate long after the end-credits have rolled.
  15. The observations coalesce into a cogent whole, providing insights that are never overtly stated.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    You're left with the bewilderment and joy on Kane's face as he plays the old songs, and the sense of ghosts just behind his back.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Pascale Ferran's Lady Chatterley is sensual in escalating degrees of heat, but the film's eroticism, which is substantial, is laid on with a caress. The movie's a slow-motion swoon back into Eden -- a nature documentary about humans -- and it's hypnotic.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    In the tradition of ethnographic dramas from "Nanook of the North" to "The Fast Runner," Tulpan drops us in the middle of a godforsaken nowhere and marvels at the people who live there.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Wild Tales rockets along with sleek, amoral charm and a masterful sense of cinematic storytelling; it’s worth noting that one of the producers is Spain’s Pedro Almodóvar.
  16. The vividly realized squalor, cruelty, and ugliness engulf everything, including the narrative.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    With pained gentleness, her film insists we make our homelands within us and take them wherever we go.
  17. The movie is the product of his (Friedman) big, shiny love of forgotten soul legends whom superstardom (and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I might add) has eluded.
  18. I liked these characters, and suddenly not having them in my life anymore, simply because Denis has decided to start the closing credits, devastated me.
  19. The film sends you home moved and in a tuneful mood.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    An agit-doc of unusual depth. It has a point -- that the primary business of America over the past half-century has been waging war -- and it supports that point with nuance, research, and a willingness to hear the other side of the argument.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Compston's performance and the downer milieu, presented with appropriate paint-peeling profanity, are more than enough to keep an audience riveted and ultimately moved close to tears.
  20. The movie is a block of paper that, when Tsai's finished with it, becomes a chain of snowflakes. Loneliness doesn't often get such a gorgeously ornate tribute.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A miniature masterpiece of documentary observation.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    If you're not in the mood, the whole thing will probably seem pretty silly. But if you are -- oh, if you are -- I Am Love may be the richest, tastiest truffle you're likely to savor all summer.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A fitting, expertly made final chapter, freighted with hard-won emotions, shot through with a sense of farewell, and fully aware of the epic stakes involved.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Because Demme genuinely likes people and is interested in them, Ricki and the Flash feels like “Stella Dallas” as remade by Jean Renoir — it’s a humanist suburban fable.
  21. It's a celebration of free expression that treats youth like a fierce and beautiful animal, and never attempts to tame it. In Pump Up the Volume, the "why-bother" generation finds a voice, and begins to bother. [22 Aug 1990, p.47]
    • Boston Globe
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Elegant, insistent movie -- a great gray filmmaker's finest in years.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Philomena is a tearjerker of rare honesty and craft.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    It’s noted that General Tso himself was a guardian of Chinese tradition and would himself shudder at what the dish named for him has become. On the other hand, what does “authenticity” even mean when it comes to cuisine that has assimilated into another culture along with the people who make it? The best food — the kind we want again and again — always tastes like home. Wherever that is.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The Hunting Ground does a fine and fierce job of portraying campus sexual assault as a national disease. It never dares to suggest that it’s a symptom.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Just because David Foster Wallace would almost certainly have hated The End of the Tour doesn’t mean that it’s not a worthwhile movie. And in fact James Ponsoldt’s dramatic adaptation of Rolling Stone journalist David Lipsky’s memoir about his 1996 road trip with Wallace is pretty excellent: heartfelt, probing, funny, above all touching.
  22. Writers Nicholas Stoller and Judd Apatow remake is more devilish, hitting its targets with the reckless glee required for a round of Whac-A-Mole.
  23. "This was the Rosa Parks moment,'' another participant says, "the time that gay people stood up and said, 'No.' ''
    • 91 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    It is first and foremost a moral tale, and an overpowering one.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Grueling yet ultimately exhilarating.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The first great cinematic experience of 2014.
  24. Compared to his previous films, The Dance of Reality offers a nearly coherent narrative and a gentle, reconciliatory tone.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Mines laughs from the ways in which its antihero's reductive philosophy consistently goes kerflooey in his face, but there's a weary sadness to it as well.
  25. By the movie’s end, viewers will have had a soul-searing brush with the unthinkable that far exceeds any real horror film of recent memory, and surpasses in its impact more traditional features and documentaries about the subject.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Nothing if not a celebration of our willingness to be gulled by life's charming strangers.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    It's an inside-the-park home run -- a small, lovingly overwritten comic drama about fate, failure, and primal longing. To put it in words a Sox fan would understand, the movie hurts good.
  26. Eyes Without a Face, outre as it is, never tires as hypnotic, touching, ghastly fun.
  27. This emperor verges on dementia, having no apparent clue how to function.
    • 86 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Richly allusive and eloquently stylized.
  28. Resonates with intelligence and a poignancy made more sorrowful by what happened to all of us, but especially to New Yorkers, on that terrible day.
    • Boston Globe
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    An exquisitely filmed, emotionally transfixing epic about a white South African boy's journey to return his pet cheetah to the wild.
  29. A subtly comic, ultimately moving film about modern adult relationships.
    • Boston Globe
    • 88 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Formally, the movie's a lasting pleasure: Reed's incisive direction; Greene's easy yet weighted dialogue; the farseeing deep-focus photography of Georges Perinal; Vincent Korda's luxuriant sets.
  30. An inventive, propulsive office thriller.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    There's a delicate balance here between expression and belligerence.
  31. It's also [Coppola's] most gloriously extravagant film since "One from the Heart." [12 Aug 1988]
    • Boston Globe
  32. Mad Dog and Glory is the funniest and most original studio comedy since "White Men Can't Jump." What makes it fun is its ability to find new ways to do old things. [5 Mar 1993, p.61]
    • Boston Globe
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Thorough and sadly engrossing documentary.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    No
    No is a comedy, but of a dangerous sort. Its eyes are open and the laughs tend to stick in your throat.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The scene appalls but doesn't offend; it's a "Worst-Case-Scenario Survival Handbook'' nightmare that resonates on the metaphysical level.
  33. Such moral outrage, apart from the artistry in which it is embedded, tells us that the forces of change are stirring in Iran.
    • Boston Globe
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    I’m not sure Lore holds up to repeated viewings — Shortland’s style is so feverish it could quickly turn precious — but it demands to be seen at least once.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Even more than "Chicken Run," Were-Rabbit is a tiny plasticine masterpiece.
  34. It's easily the best of the movies I've seen by the various "Saturday Night Live" alumni, and part of the reason it's funny and satisfying is that it doesn't strain. [09 Jun 1983]
    • Boston Globe
  35. Astounding. It is also bizarre, challenging, and, at times, admirably overreaching. In short, it's the kind of ambitious little film that can leave critics in a swoon and American moviegoers scratching their heads.
    • Boston Globe
  36. Another triumph of modesty from a master who deserves real, paying audiences, not just the adoration of besotted film critics.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The joke's on us, it turns out; as a director, Affleck has come through with a sharp, morally ambiguous piece of pulp crackerjack.
  37. Despite its ultimate nuttiness, has a quiet, consuming power that sneaks up on you and doesn't go away. This is something new and ambitious for Von Trier: a work of compassion.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Like a nightmare you recall during waking hours, and then only in its vast outlines, Antichrist has the power to haunt beyond words. For better and for worse, it is exactly the movie von Trier wanted to make and a piece of staggeringly pure cinema.
  38. It's practically a primer on how to rework a literary classic into an impressively restrained movie with something fresh and intelligent to say.
  39. Angst-ridden, yet graceful, stylish, and optimistic allegory about swerving off one road and finding your way back via another.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The director can work wonders within his celluloid universe, but when the time comes to hand us back to reality, he stumbles. With this movie, that hurts.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Does Antarctica attract dreamers or create them? It's a thread that runs throughout the film.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A proudly Calvinist work - I mean the comic strip character, not the philosopher - that understands the delights of deep play.
  40. Brilliantly, the movie becomes a double coming-of-age story. The parents' political awakening parallels their daughter's.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Some movies rest on an actor's face, and The Counterfeiters has a great one.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Self-consciously poetic and shot within a luscious inch of its life, the film's also an engrossing heartbreaker: a family saga that spans continents, political administrations, and decades of travail to arrive at a harder, wiser place.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The ''R'' rating is understandable, but absurd. This is a family film in the most complicated and, ultimately, most cheering sense.
  41. It's hugely entertaining.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    This is one cinematic novella that stays with you for quite a while.
  42. Who knows what movie Lonergan was searching for in all that footage? But what emerges from the tinkering and legal skirmishes is an occasional marvel, a kind of everyday highbrow social X-ray, Paul Mazursky by way of Krzysztof Kieslowski.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    I have seen the future of Hollywood movie stardom, and its name is America Ferrera.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The film is startlingly even-handed.

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