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 Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Lowest review score: 0 Left Behind
Score distribution:
1,436 movie reviews
  1. Handsome and competently acted and prettily shot and all the other things critics say when what they really want to scream is "Aaaaaaaargh! No more Jane Austen adaptations, ESPECIALLY not Pride and Prejudice.
  2. Classically scary.
    • Charlotte Observer
  3. The results require immense patience but also reward it immensely.
  4. Squid keeps you on your toes, but payoffs will have you smiling - maybe in rueful recognition of the truth - in scene after scene.
  5. Somewhere inside "School" lurks a heartwarming or hilarious movie, perhaps both.
  6. In an era when most scripts are written by committees of monkeys, hearing one man's intelligent voice is an almost forgotten pleasure.
  7. Careful casting adds to verisimilitude. Nobody carries off a chilly authority figure like Tilda Swinton, who represents the chemical company; Pollack, who has more or less stopped directing, now embodies urbane amorality as an actor; Wilkinson, whose career has mostly been devoted to repressed or depressed characters, enjoys his turn as a bright-eyed fanatic.
  8. Has an honesty few movies seek or achieve these days.
  9. The most violent scene is dreamlike, and more direct killings are often seen at an angle or from a distance. The camera placement is thoughtful and effective, never titillating.
  10. Gibney also made the Oscar-nominated "Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room," and he gets remarkable access to people you wouldn't expect to talk to him (including U.S. interrogators charged with crimes at Bagram).
  11. Cedar is mostly interested in the father-son dynamics, and he cast excellent actors. Lewensohn, a famous Israeli theatrical director, makes his film acting debut, while the veteran Ashkenazi ("Late Wedding") handles his low-key role with bearlike grace.
  12. So wild an approach demands straightforward performances that don't draw attention to themselves, and that's what the actors supply.
  13. Warms the heart while chilling the bones.
  14. Alfred Hitchcock once said, "Drama is life with the dull bits left out." Well, Rachel Getting Married is drama with the dull bits left in.
  15. The two leads don't have sexual chemistry together, but that's part of the point.
  16. If you're tired of false holiday cheer, Lilya 4-Ever will provide a corrective to the spiritual eggnog force-fed to us all season. The climax takes place during Christmas, though one that would make Tiny Tim grateful for his crutch and cold chimney corner.
  17. succeeds as an action film, character study and metaphor for our own terrorism-obsessed time.
  18. Melissa Leo is one of America's most underrated character actresses, and Frozen River confirms that opinion.
  19. If you used this guy's umbilical cord for fishing line, you could land a world-record marlin.
  20. Reflective, touching, intimate portrait of a samurai facing action in his waning years.
  21. The usually quiet Zellweger is the revelation: Like her character, the actress seems happily amazed to find herself crossing a polished dance floor, sheathed in silk and diamonds, having the naughty, self-glorifying time of her life.
  22. A documentary that's as chaotic, rude and funny as the band could be.
  23. He (writer/director David Gordon Green) fired his arrow straight at a worthwhile target, but it fell a little short.
    • Charlotte Observer
  24. Lynch does "explain" what's happening via a plot twist two-thirds of the way through "Drive," which will satisfy you (as it did me) or leave you asking, "Is that all there is?"
  25. It mocks folk musicians of the 1960s, who could sometimes be full of hot air. It also acknowledges that protests 40 years ago, often spearheaded by bards and balladeers, blew much-needed fresh air into post-Eisenhower society.
  26. Comedy comes from an exaggeration of reality, not reality itself -- and on that score, Diablo Cody's first screenplay gets high marks.
  27. To call it a masterpiece is premature: That's a title to be earned only in retrospect. But I've seen it twice now and can't imagine what I would change. It fits together tightly as a suspenseful puzzle, yet it's also emotionally rewarding and sardonically funny.
  28. After 30 minutes, I wondered why I was watching a drama about a quarrelsome couple who seemed so obviously wrong for each other. After 60 minutes, I knew. After 90 minutes, I cared. By the end, I was riveted.
  29. They've made a thrilling traditional nautical picture from untraditional books.
  30. Nobody fires a shot. Nobody topples a kingdom. But as Ivan Locke’s life unravels behind the wheel of his car, which he drives almost from the first frame to the last, we can’t look away.

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