Chicago Reader's Scores

  • Movies
For 5,156 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 4.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Dogtooth
Lowest review score: 0 Evita
Score distribution:
5156 movie reviews
    • 96 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Lester serves up a helping of what, on this side of the pond, we came to think of as kicky, mod British filmmaking
  1. Charlie Chaplin finally got around to acknowledging the 20th century in this 1936 film, which substitutes machine-age gags for the fading Victoriana of his other work. Consequently, it's the coldest of his major features, though no less brilliant for it.
  2. Enchanting and impressively crafted.
  3. Walt Disney Pictures and Pixar Animation Studios join forces on an entertaining computer-generated, hyperrealist animation feature that's also in effect a toy catalog.
  4. Ford's admirers have rightly tended to play this down in favor of his later and more personal westerns, but there's much to admire here in Gregg Toland's sun-beaten photography and Henry Fonda's meticulous performance as Steinbeck's dashboard saint, Tom Joad.
  5. The founding of Facebook becomes a tale for our times in this masterful social drama.
  6. It's one of the best movies about revolutionary and anticolonial activism ever made, convincing, balanced, passionate, and compulsively watchable as storytelling.
  7. Wilder trades Cain's sun-rot imagery for conventional film noir stylings, but the atmosphere of sexual entrapment survives.
  8. The movie is hugely compelling on a moral and emotional level - I was completely hooked - yet it also revealed to me in numerous small and concrete ways what it's like to live in a contemporary theocracy.
  9. The movie's first half is largely free of dialogue, playing like silent comedy, while the second act offers a breathtaking tour of the cosmos.
  10. A great film, rich in thought and feeling, composed in rhythms that vary from the elegiac to the spontaneous.
  11. A veritable salad of mixed genres and emotional textures, this exciting black-and-white cold war thriller runs more than two hours and never flags for an instant...A powerful experience, alternately corrosive with dark parodic humor, suspenseful, moving, and terrifying.
  12. Tarantino's mock-tough narrative--which derives most of its titillation from farcical mayhem, drugs, deadpan macho monologues, evocations of anal penetration, and terms of racial abuse--resembles a wet dream for 14-year-old male closet queens (or, perhaps more accurately, the 14-year-old male closet queen in each of us), and his command of this smart-alecky mode is so sure that this nervy movie sparkles throughout with canny twists and turns.
  13. Shot on a year's worth of weekends on a minuscule budget (less than $20,000), this remarkable work--conceivably the best single feature about ghetto life that we have--was selected for preservation by the National Film Registry as one of the key works of the American cinema, an ironic and belated form of recognition for a film that has had virtually no distribution. It shouldn't be missed.
  14. Such is the extraordinary achievement of The Hurt Locker: it has the perspective of years when those years have yet to pass.
  15. Payne's entertaining but familiar comedy lacks the insolence of his "Election" and the freshness of his work with Kathy Bates in "About Schmidt."
  16. Ties everything together with a dazzling synthesis of pagan animism, heroic quest mythology, orientalism, Pre-Raphaelite imagery, 1950s sci-fi creature features, and Hollywood war epics.
  17. I haven't seen the shorter version, but I would hate to lose one moment of the gripping 66-minute sequence-really the heart of the movie-in which Carlos plots and executes his spectacular 1975 raid on the meeting of OPEC ministers in Vienna.
  18. Frightening, funny, profound, and mysterious.
  19. The juxtaposition of liberal Jewish attorney Dershowitz (Silver) and von Bulow working together on the latter's defense makes for some engagingly offbeat drama, with some interesting insights into the legal process.
  20. The first Ang Lee film I've seen that I've liked without qualification.
  21. Spielberg does an uncommonly good job both of holding our interest over 185 minutes and of showing more of the nuts and bolts of the Holocaust than we usually get from fiction films. Despite some characteristic simplifications, he's generally scrupulous about both his source and the historical record.
  22. Yang seems to miss nothing as he interweaves shifting viewpoints and poignant emotional refrains.
  23. The film was hugely successful and widely praised in its time, though it's really nothing more than the old C.B. De Mille formula of titillation and moralizing--Roman orgies and Christian martyrs--with only a fraction of De Mille's showmanship.
  24. Perhaps the most formally ravishing-as well as the most morally and ideologically problematic-film ever directed by Martin Scorsese. (Review of Original Release).
  25. This has loads of swagger, but for stylistic audacity I prefer Anderson's more scattershot "Magnolia."
  26. Buñuel conjures with Freudian imagery, outrageous humor, and a quiet, lyrical camera style to create one of his most complex and complete works, a film that continues to disturb and transfix.
  27. It binds up introductory lessons in music appreciation, Freudian psychology, and fanciful history with a pulp thriller plot.
  28. Captivating, mesmerizing, spellbinding.
  29. The result is a film that hovers just beyond our grasp--mysterious, beautiful, and, very possibly, a masterpiece.

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