Boston Globe's Scores

For 5,027 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 56% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 42% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Crimson Gold
Lowest review score: 0 The Black Waters of Echo's Pond
Score distribution:
5,027 movie reviews
    • 75 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    One of the funniest yet most depressing movies in Martin Scorsese’s long career — a celebration and evisceration of male savagery, financial division. It’s like “GoodFellas,” only (slightly) more legal, which is very much the point.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The Past, the new film from Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, is taut, quiet, democratic, observant — a fine meal made with rare and subtle ingredients.
    • 84 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    An electrifying, at times heartbreaking documentary from the Egyptian-born, Harvard-educated documentarian Jehane Noujaim (“Control Room”).
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    If the movie’s about anything, it’s about the tension between what we owe our families and what we owe ourselves.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The first great cinematic experience of 2014.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Should you see it? Of course you should. Anything Miyazaki does is worth your time. But the movie’s a gorgeous, problematic anomaly in an illustrious career.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The deeper Tim’s Vermeer takes you, the peskier and more profound the questions get.
  1. A taut, expertly constructed, and suspenseful police procedural, it also explores the issues of loyalty, trust, betrayal, and revenge that those engaged in such morally ambiguous if essential activities would prefer not to think about.
  2. Of all the great monster mothers in cinema history, Cornelia Keneres (Luminita Gheorghiu, who sets the standard other performances should be judged by this year) ranks high on the list.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    She’s a diva — she knows it, we know it, the director knows it — but over the years Stritch seems to have learned that the only way to deal with that is honestly. So she’s a paradox: a diva with no illusions about herself.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    What does it add up to? What’s it all about, Wes? In a word: evanescence.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Seems calculated to shock, but what’s most disquieting about Nymph()maniac is how funny, tender, thoughtful, and truthful it is, even as it pushes into genuinely seamy aspects of onscreen sexuality. Obnoxious he may be, but von Trier knows how to burrow into our ids.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    The Lunchbox isn’t an example of bravura moviemaking or cutting-edge style but simply a tale told with intelligence, restraint, and respect.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    In retrospect, it’s obvious why the film was never produced: The director was a lunatic.
  3. His film aspires to a poetry about barbarism that will not let us forget.
  4. “The Fog of War” (2003), about McNamara, won Morris a best documentary feature Oscar. The Unknown Known takes its title from a favorite phrase of Rumsfeld. It also accurately describes its subject, whose smiling inscrutability makes him consistently fascinating and often maddening.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 88 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    What’s under the film’s surface is intriguing enough, but it’s the surface itself that holds you in a dark trance. A portrait of alienation filmed from the alien’s point of view — or is it just a woman’s? — the movie’s a cinematic Rubik’s Cube that snaps together surprisingly easily, yet whose larger meanings remain tantalizingly out of reach.
  5. Despite the seeming inevitability of tragedy and despair, In Bloom remains true to its title. Though political and personal upheaval threatens to overwhelm them, Eka and Natia’s clarity and courage resist the ignorance, injustice, and rage all around.
  6. Sentimental and has its heart on its sleeve, but never heavy-handedly so, and its delicacy and tenderness will get to you if you give it half a chance.
  7. As each scientist chronicles his or her story, one is impressed by the place that unswerving motivation and determination has assumed in the work.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Jensen's charming film, is perhaps one of the first in which the actors are credited not by the size of their salaries and egos, but by their vocal ranges.
  8. In the end, Fighter, despite its newsreel footage, is less a document of wartime experience than of the mentality one needs to maintain in order to be a fighter.
  9. It's not afraid to play cornball when it isn't playing baseball, but The Rookie gets away with it.
  10. For an anonymous Saturday afternoon, it's the best lump of coal Hollywood can jam in your stocking.
  11. Reminds us that the human dynamic can do a lot that explosions can't, even when the film flirts with formula.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    It's messy, but in the end satisfying, a film worth making, a journey worth taking.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    In addition to the film's two extremely likable stars, the strong supporting cast features a who's who of rising African-American actors.
  12. Apologies to Conrad Rooks, but the only reason his 1972 film, Siddhartha, is getting a 30th-anniversary rerelease is the appeal of seeing Sven Nykvist's amazing cinematography restored to its full splendor.
  13. It isn't afraid to genuflect to heroes and heroism and has everything it needs to connect with the resurgence of patriotism after Sept. 11.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Takes you inside a kingdom you've never seen the likes of before. Not only is it an IMAX film, with all the superlatives (six-story screen, 12,000 seat-rumbling watts of digital sound) this implies, but it's also computer-generated 3D animation.
  14. A comedy of chaos, an ensemble comedy, with characters swirling around one another unaware, in their uniform desperation, of how funny they are.
  15. Sometimes gets bogged down in its own wordiness.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Doesn't try to be anything it's not. It's happy being a funny, shoot-'em-up, run-for-your-life, green-guts monster movie. And as green-guts monster movies go, it's a beaut.
  16. Small, sharply written, incisive comedy examines, with smarts and style and sexiness, the very nature of modern romance - gay, straight, and in between.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    There's death, domestic violence, alcoholism, racism, attempted suicide, and a mental breakdown. Naturally, it's a comedy about the eccentricities of Southern women.
  17. The story is a mess. But On Guard was directed by the reliable Philippe de Broca, who imbues the whole affair with high-calorie silliness.
  18. The kind of film that could easily be undone by its own high-minded ambitions and dissolve in a pall of uplift. But it stays the course and gives the season two of its notable performances.
  19. A steadily engaging and winningly humane film that loves its characters.
  20. It is Close's performance that gives the movie its oomph and will leave adults with smiles as wide as the kids'.
  21. Ali
    Ali, in short, is far from a seamless success, but it does get the big things right and it respects a subject who commands respect.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    A chick flick of a particularly intelligent, ruthless, and loving sort.
  22. Warm, wry, endearing.
  23. The film not only works better than expected but gets the important things right, starting, of course, with Zellweger's Bridget and Bridget's mind-set.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    An illuminating and entertaining study of an underground culture that has become part of the American mainstream.
  24. It's a charmer.
  25. Full of elegance but hampered by lack of depth.
  26. Has that rarest of qualities in movies that think of themselves as religious. I'm talking about the vision thing. And the ability to make morality entertaining.
  27. A solid two-bagger, not a home run.
  28. Cleverly mocks the modern chronicler, raising questions that linger long after the film is finished.
  29. Stylish and arrives at a satisfying cumulative weight, even if it isn't Austen pure.
  30. A lively and affectionate cross between an infomercial and a genuflection.
  31. Engrossing and eye-opening in several respects and even, when you least expect it, humorous.
  32. A solid, humane, old-fashioned film in the best sense of the term.
  33. Aims its big, bold mother-daughter conflicts straight at the heart by way of the tear ducts, and connects.
  34. (Washington's is) an astonishing performance, partly because it's so devoid of histrionics, and it has Oscar nomination written all over it.
  35. Wrestling gets in America's face and Blaustein gets in wrestling's face. It's a fascinating tango.
  36. Enough originality and emotional weight to keep you engrossed even when it lapses into some pretty standard moves at the end.
  37. One of the most warmly beguiling romantic comedies the Southern Hemisphere has sent our way in ages.
  38. A big, handsome throwback to star-powered historical costume movies.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 75 Reviewed by
      Ty Burr
    Touches smartly and wistfully on a number of themes, not least the notion that the marginal members of society - the ones who get spit out on the sidewalk with no idea of how it happened - might benefit from a helping hand and a friendly kick in the pants.
  39. Sensationalism and doom are not on screen here; Jacquot offers a relatively peaceful moment in Sade's life.
  40. The film's flaws seem unimportant, and it passes the big test, making you want to find out what happens to these characters, even when what does happen is predictable.
  41. Like Schumacher, director Gregor Schnitzler is more preoccupied with his characters' looks than their behavior. You might not buy the ideas. But you'll definitely want the T-shirt.
  42. It offers pleasures of a kind that fewer and fewer films even seem to remember, much less aspire to.
  43. A gritty, immediate, down-and-dirty satire with a down-and-dirty look.
  44. A small film and, ultimately, a satisfying one.
  45. A sleek little poison pill of a movie.
  46. Filled with affection and verve and will do very nicely until the next shipment of Latin jazz comes along.
  47. It's all glossy urban fairy-tale stuff, laid on with style to spare, given added resonance by a mini-pantheon of French movie goddesses.
  48. Hurls its Holocaust at us in a series of justifiably horrific images.
  49. A long, warm, satisfying farewell encounter.
  50. Goes soft in the end, but not ruinously so. Meanwhile, its loose cannons bounce off one another deliciously.
  51. It's rare that a crime movie achieves such emotional complexity, but this one is smartly layered.
  52. Mother's peace crusade ennobles Irish Town.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    The situation is comic and yet quite serious, as are the ways in which language is used.
  53. Gallo has delivered a clever suspense comedy that, thanks to a taut script, creative direction, and first-rate performances from its leads, gives Double Take more weight than one would expect from a genre crowd-pleaser.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Becomes a creepy yet amusing look at how he tries to take control of the film being made about him.
  54. It's one of the few films that persuades you that it went out to meet the war and bring it to us with verisimilitude.
  55. Intoxicating fun.
  56. I can't imagine anyone not feeling entertained by Happy, Texas.
  57. I'd take a chance on it anyway, even if it stumbles and loses its way.
  58. Branagh and Love's Labour's Lost all but will themselves into liftoff. They achieve it, and in doing so, they somehow make it right to our pleasure centers with their generous embrace of stardust and pizazz.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    There is a palpable edge-of-the-seat tension and a number of complex ethnic issues that linger after the movie ends.
  59. Is a chamber romance, in that there's nothing grand or sweeping about it, but it's got all the style it needs to go with those glorious Tuscan settings.
  60. The performances are disarming and Mumford is the kind of comedy that grows on you if you give it a chance.
  61. A deft, elegant, melancholy tapestry of flawed outreach, and the big reason it succeeds is Podeswa's courage in dispensing with a lot of exposition and trusting the audience - and the faces of the actors - to fill a lot of what otherwise would be gaps.
  62. A little Hitchcock and some good Psycho fun at the beach.
  63. Give it a chance and you'll probably share the cast's collective impulse to dive in and embrace it.
  64. A train worth catching.
  65. Avoids the potentially suffocating pall of uplift hovering over its quite exhilarating story.
  66. Movingly recounts a hitherto untold story in the voices of the people who lived it.
  67. Rat
    Rat may be lightweight, but it's never cheesy.
  68. Starts out as a somewhat weary farce of infidelity, but turns into something a lot more gratifying, namely a comedy of mercy.
  69. What Merchant, Ivory and Co. arrive at is a sort of handsomely illustrated Cliffs Notes version of the novel.
  70. Breathes fresh life into old formulas.
  71. There's an engagingly homegrown quality to much of the footage.
  72. Both a lovingly crafted remembrance of things past and a deliberate broadening and darkening of the canvas Levinson previously filled in "Diner," "Tin Men," and "Avalon."
  73. The sweetly enticing Smiling Fish and Goat on Fire repays the bit of patience it asks.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    A charming and funny look at the independent filmmaking business and the thin line between a masterpiece and a $9 nap.
  74. The Crimson Rivers could teach many an American thriller a thing or two about sophisticated creepiness.

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