Chicago Reader's Scores

  • Movies
For 5,216 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 The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada
Lowest review score: 0 Evita
Score distribution:
5216 movie reviews
  1. Grossly unimaginative.
  2. Allen doesn't get us to care much about any of the characters here.
  3. This interminable contest between two narcissists, stretched out over many miles and years, is supposed to have something to do with romance.
  4. But it's also Howard's and his audience's misfortune that a good time can be had by all only if nothing of substance gets said.
  5. Distributors are clearly scraping the bottom of the barrel with this flimsy exposé of presidential adviser Karl Rove.
  6. This ambiguously pitched comedy--its idea of sexy humor is a cheerleader farting--shoots for camp without bothering with satire.
  7. The first-time director, Harold Ramis, can't hold it together: the picture lurches from style to style (including some ill-placed whimsy with a gopher puppet) and collapses somewhere between sitcom and sketch farce. Male bonding remains the highest value of the Animal House comedies: women are trashed with a fierceness out of Mickey Spillane.
  8. This asthma-inducing adventure set on K2 starts out seeming as if its corny storytelling and phony-looking settings were designed to show that it's as much about genre-movie conventions as anything else.
  9. This 1979 movie adaptation of the cult TV series is blandness raised to an epic scale. Robert Wise's bloodless direction drains all the air from the Enterprise.
  10. To judge from this agonizing documentary, sniveling man-child Joaquin Phoenix was put on earth to make us appreciate Crispin Glover for the level-headed fellow he is.
  11. Too slavish in its devotion to 50s sci-fi conventions to work as parody or camp, this indie comedy by "The X-Files" alumnus R.W. Goodwin sinks under the weight of its homage.
  12. If DiCillo had been going anywhere with this, I'd have gladly followed. But setting up petty ironies and pathetic references to Woody Allen seems to be his only goal.
  13. Jessica Lange brings so much energy and personal involvement to her portrayal of Frances Farmer that you can't help but feel sorry for her; nothing else in the film remotely matches her talent and dedication, and she seems alone—and even slightly absurd—in her feverish creativity.
  14. Would have proved the point if it weren't so mechanically scripted.
  15. The insultingly trendy post-postmodern tale rationalizes its own product placement by using overkill.
  16. 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.
  17. The movie's notion of humor is exemplified by Bradshaw's extended nude scene, which might be termed "roughing the viewer."
  18. Like Robert Altman's "M*A*S*H" this has a banquet scene posed like The Last Supper, but the basic idea--toothless satire trimming a dull star party--reminded me more of "Ready to Wear."
  19. If I were a Christian, I'd be appalled to have this primitive and pornographic bloodbath presume to speak for me.
  20. This comedy is an ill-fated attempt to remake "Risky Business" (1983) for the 21st century, complete with a wind-chimey score, the hero posing in his underpants, and a cynical happy ending.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Overall, though, the flashes of competence just emphasize the extent to which the film has no idea what it's doing.
  21. The young sweethearts amuse themselves by donning steampunk outfits and crashing the funerals of dead children, which may seem quirky and sweet if you can disregard the awful grief of such gatherings; the problem is that, once you manage this, the main characters' grief doesn't register either.
  22. These ideas may well have cohered in Chuck Palahniuk's best-selling satirical novel, which I haven't read, but in this screen adaptation by writer-director Clark Gregg they seem more like an assortment of gimmicks.
  23. To call this campy would be charitable.
  24. The set-up is tediously slow, while the later murders are packed so tightly it's like watching a blender on high speed.
  25. This is mostly a listless hodgepodge of half-improvised whatever, the seven lead characters so flatly conceived they're like the Keystone Kops (without the chops).
  26. An exceptionally stupid movie.
  27. The picture seems deliberately trite, blunt, and manipulative, as if the producers didn't trust their audience to respond to anything else.
  28. I missed the first half hour of this Zorro adventure, and it's a tribute to the idiot-proof screenplay that I had no trouble following the rest.
  29. An extravagant mess.

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