Chicago Reader's Scores

  • Movies
For 5,259 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 42% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 56% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 4.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 An Unreasonable Man
Lowest review score: 0 Cop Out
Score distribution:
5259 movie reviews
  1. This bloated 2006 historical epic flatlines early and never regains a pulse.
    • 38 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    The picture flogs a fake dichotomy between career and family for 119 minutes until Hudson digests a feeble moral that Laverne and Shirley would have covered in 25.
  2. Out of Sight engaged me less and less, until by the end I no longer cared which of the characters lived or died. Not even the engaging Jennifer Lopez, George Clooney, Albert Brooks, Don Cheadle, and Ving Rhames or the talented secondary cast can survive the abbreviations and last-minute shoehorning their characters receive.
  3. A feeble sequel to The Naked Gun that's about one and a half rungs down from its predecessor and a good four or five down from Airplane!
  4. Stunning vistas of New Zealand's rolling countryside aren't enough to carry this lame 2006 horror spoof.
  5. Costars John Cleese, Jean Reno, Alfred Molina, Andy Garcia, and Jeremy Irons look either bored or desperate, gasping for laughs in an airless screenplay.
  6. I haven't seen the original, and this mishmash -- doesn't make me want to.
  7. The cinematic equivalent of a tapeworm, this delivers few laughs beyond the initial chuckles of recognition. Seltzer and Friedberg (who also directed) have another script in development called "Raunchy Movie"; apparently one idea they haven't yet considered is "Watchable Movie."
  8. The direction is so muted and sentimental and the pacing so soporific that only Ciarian Tanham's saturated color cinematography of the sylvan countryside breaks the monotony.
  9. The bucketloads of sanctimonious message mongering ladled on by director Peter Hyams still can't disguise the sheerly mercenary basis of this 1986 project, a wholly uncalled-for sequel to Stanley Kubrick's 2001.
  10. The result is a dull and campy 97-minute bloodbath offering little distinction between good guys and bad.
  11. Cohen probably thinks he's Charlie Chaplin lampooning Hitler, but of course Hitler was still on top of the world when "The Great Dictator" came out in 1940; Cohen is actually Chaplin's antithesis, a first-world bully content to target the Other.
  12. This lame comedy was adapted from a recent British TV movie, though its (quite literal) money shots of the women squealing and hurling cash in the air reminded me of 80s greed capers like "Trading Places" and "A Fish Called Wanda."
    • 35 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    This one is overblown, over-dressed, and grandiosely dopey, packed with gargantuan sets and ludicrous action scenes and shot in unusually dark and dingy 3-D.
  13. A straightforward account of the debate between evolutionists and ID proponents might have been both entertaining and enlightening; instead this follows the avuncular Ben Stein (who cowrote the movie) as he jet-sets around the globe trying to prove that a cabal of Darwinians has conspired to destroy academic freedom.
  14. This never rises above the level of a plodding sword-and-sandal adventure, peopled with chiseled young beauties and bored industry hacks. Singh is a talented and eccentric visual artist with no creative future in the movie business.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    In Private Parts Stern is clearly presenting a sanitized version of his story--he had control over every aspect of the film and vetoed more than half a dozen scripts before choosing the one that pleased him--in an attempt to reach a whole new level of stardom.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Indie moviemaking reaches some kind of awful zenith of self-indulgence in this scriptless drama, entirely improvised and shot on cellphones.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Christian E. Christiansen directed this stinker, which lacks even unintentional humor.
  15. If old-fashioned jolts are what you're after, this nasty piece of merchandise delivers. But so does electroshock.
  16. This inept 2003 melodrama has become a Rocky Horror-style cult favorite...As someone who's watched more bad movies than you can imagine, I'm mostly immune to the so-bad-it's-good aesthetic, though I can see how, viewed in a theater at midnight after a few drinks, this might conjure up its own hilariously demented reality.
  17. The murder-mystery board game becomes a frantic, unfunny spoof (1985) under the direction of British TV writer Jonathan Lynn. The script recycles Agatha Christie's Ten Little Indians, with six guests invited by a mysterious host to spend the night in a creepy mansion, but instead of parodying the material Lynn simply surrounds it with extraneous pratfalls and wisecracks.
  18. Big, cruel, stupid actioner.
  19. The cat is computer-generated, as are his one-liners.
  20. This movie's story must have been computer generated along with its animation.
  21. A film about a junkie rock musician, played by Michael Pitt at his most narcissistic, doing nothing in particular for the better part of 97 minutes isn't my idea of either a good time or a serious endeavor.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    This graphically violent film suffers from cursorily developed characters whose primary function is to advance the creaky plot.
  22. Williams's overacting, Russell's pinched melancholy, and Highmore's unflagging chirpiness would be trying enough on their own, but the convoluted story, with its pileup of obstacles and coincidences, makes this sophomore effort by director Kirsten Sheridan (Disco Pigs) an exercise in dissonance.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    As the seconds tick down to midnight, Arkin becomes a reluctant hero trapped by a masked Collector in a maze of lethal invention--the Spanish Inquisition as imagined by Rube Goldberg--while trying to rescue the very family he came to rob.
  23. The players appear to be having a good time, though the situation is too sitcom-familiar to be funny.

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