Charlotte Observer's Scores

  • Movies
For 1,436 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 56% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 41% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 The Squid and the Whale
Lowest review score: 0 Waist Deep
Score distribution:
1,436 movie reviews
  1. A Kafkaesque series of interwoven stories that depict the hopeless lives half the populace there (Iran) must lead.
  2. It depicts a world close enough to our own to be terrifying, yet different enough to rouse curiosity.
  3. Whatever you think of gay people (or politicians), you may find the movie compelling viewing.
  4. Begins and ends quietly, like stirrings of thunder from a distant storm. In between comes a tragedy that rolls over us like a compact hurricane.
  5. A wild, self-indulgent but completely captivating extravagance.
  6. A handsome tribute to an era as quaintly distant as tail-fin Chevrolets and A-bomb scares.
  7. The grandest presence here is Eastwood. His directing, like his acting, is minimal: unhurried, spare, unforced, rather somber.
  8. The leads blend as seamlessly as any young-old character coupling I've seen. The prosthetically altered Gordon-Levitt, unrecognizable at first, really resembles Willis.
  9. It's possible to groan, chuckle, wince and be moist-eyed, sometimes in a span of seven or eight minutes.
  10. As usual, Almodovar finds unusual camera angles to break up the straightforward storytelling. But for the first time I recall, not a single male character is crucial to his story, and no actor has a leading role. You won't miss them.
  11. At bottom, all Payne's films make us smile, often ruefully but hopefully.
  12. Atmosphere is the main virtue with which this "Devil" can tempt us.
  13. Greene's words haunt us like a prophecy from half a century and half a world away.
  14. Breathtaking masterpiece.
  15. If we admire anything about him, it’s entrepreneurship; there’s something uniquely American about a guy outrunning his own death by turning suffering into profit. And as a judge asks, why shouldn’t a dying man be allowed to try any remedy for his disease?
  16. The real joke is that the picture's most conventional elements, the superbly acted entanglement between the complicated Orlean and the boastful but unexpectedly thoughtful Laroche, would have made a compelling movie all by themselves -- if written by someone other than Charlie Kaufman.
  17. This isn't a cheerful movie. But director Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu and writer Guillermo Arriaga tell these stories with authority and verve, making 2½ hours zip by.
  18. Corpse Bride had me at the maggot.
  19. The film is visually sumptuous, morally ambiguous, dramatic and dreamlike, with a narrative as engrossing as any live-action movie of 2013. It’s easy to follow yet hard to shake.
  20. Yet for all the fun the sequel provides, the series shows signs of wearing out quickly, unless characters get developed thoroughly and in unexpected ways.
  21. Most documentaries put us inside people's heads. The dazzling, experimental Pina puts us inside people's feet.
  22. As we bounce over rough seas on the Maersk, we know just what will be lost if the Somalis don’t keep their trembling fingers off their triggers. As the title suggests, this is not a movie about an incident: It’s a movie about a man who stays very real to us.
  23. Watching it again reminded me how remarkably the sound engineers did their jobs. Listen to the subtly amplified heartbeat - Ripley's? the ship's? - that pulses under the soundtrack through the last 15 minutes.
  24. Haneke peels back the layers of Georges Laurent as slowly and dispassionately as a scientist dissecting a diseased mouse. The ending arrives with the power and inevitability of Greek drama.
  25. What does it say about a picture when the highest praise must go to impressive scenery?
  26. The movie ends so abruptly you might wonder if a piece is missing, and it relies on one extraordinary coincidence I couldn’t swallow. Yet scene by scene, I found people I knew or wish I knew: Ben’s romantic advice to the straight but awkward Joey would give any boy confidence about himself.
  27. The result is one of the twistiest thrillers in recent memory.
  28. He (Chomet) keeps us waiting for a narrative payoff that will equal that visual splendor, and he makes us think that many small inspired touches will add up to something memorable. But when he opens his hand at last, there's nothing in it.
  29. The story might have worked as well without that stick-in-the-craw coincidence, which was inserted to maximize the horrors of Nawal's past.
  30. Cinematographer Cesar Charlone, whose burnt-orange view of the favela made "City of God" striking, conveys Africa's slums with equal force in somber browns and simmering yellows. At times, the inhabitants seem to be on fire in their surroundings, a fitting image for a land consigned to a hell of unhappiness.

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