Chicago Reader's Scores

  • Movies
For 5,064 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 4.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Kundun
Lowest review score: 0 Untraceable
Score distribution:
5064 movie reviews
  1. About as entertaining as a no-brainer can be--a lot more fun, for my money, than a cornball theme-park ride like "Speed," and every bit as fast moving. But don't expect much of an aftertaste.
  2. This meticulous but ultimately rather pedestrian drama gradually won me over as a minor if watchable example of the "victory through defeat" brand of military heroism that John Ford specialized in.
  3. The film is all but crushed by Tom Cruise's screen-hogging demand that everything collapse and swoon around him. If the star gave us more of a rest, we might have more of a movie.
  4. Part of the minimalist humor growing out of this small-scale event is that they can barely remember anything, because the revolution scarcely made any difference.
  5. Whenever writer-director Oren Moverman moves past these scattered and admittedly voyeuristic moments into the lives of the two soldiers, the movie drifts into received wisdom and unconvincing romance.
  6. The altitude, extreme cold, quicksand, and crushing poverty are potent dramatic elements, but of course there's no mention of China's complicity in the area's economic ills; instead writer-director Lu Chuan frames the story as a showdown between the head ranger and the leader of the poachers.
  7. I enjoyed the invented trailers the directors fold into the mix, but despite the jokey "missing reels," these two full-length features are each 20 minutes longer than they need to be, and neither one makes much sense as narrative.
  8. A standard mix of performances, interviews, and gimmickry -- the image and sound sometimes loop or jump in a tiresomely literal attempt to translate the techniques of scratching and "beat juggling" into cinema.
  9. Director Bob Clark teamed with nostalgic humorist Jean Shepherd for this squeaky clean and often quite funny 1983 yuletide comedy, adapted from Shepherd's novel In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash.
  10. An unholy mess that becomes steadily more incoherent -- morally, dramatically, and conceptually.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The acting is mainly horrendous, the English dialogue frequently awkward, but they're overcome by the beautiful colors and settings and a grim sense of the uncanny spilling over into twisted humor.
  11. Zuniga's support is winningly low-key.
  12. Very slickly and glibly put together, with a sharp eye for yuppie decor and accoutrements; even Woody's habitual, fanciful vision of an all-white New York is respected.
  13. Singleton shows some genuine talent in handling character and action, and equal amounts of confusion and attitude when it comes to matters of gender and ghetto politics.
  14. Wyler lays out all the elements with care and precision, but the romantic comedy never comes together - it's charm by computer. [Review of re-release]
  15. It's mostly fascinating, though the unconverted may be in for a rough two hours.
  16. The movie is never less than entertaining, but it fails to satisfy—it gives us too little of too much. Oddly, much of its pleasure is in the acting, which up to this point hadn't been Carpenter's strong suit: Donald Pleasence, Adrienne Barbeau, and Harry Dean Stanton offer excellent turns.
  17. Sacrifices compelling drama for gratuitous whimsy and big-budget spectacle.
  18. Naturally, age and infirmity are a major subtext of Shine a Light (and, really, any movie featuring Keith Richards). No matter how cadaverous the Stones appear, they keep climbing onstage, and I’ll miss them when they’re finally gone.
  19. This story of a party girl (Audrey Hepburn) in love with a gigolo (George Peppard) allows Edwards to create a very handsome film, with impeccable Technicolor photography by Franz Planer. [Review of re-release]
  20. Even though I appreciate this movie's craft, I wish I hadn't seen it. It's a heady, progressive -- or perhaps elaborately conservative? -- romance, but it's also a tale of terrible suffering.
  21. Individually these elements are powerful, but they fail to mesh or collide with one another in any satisfying way, and the movie's score only exacerbates the problem.
  22. Never really delivers on that promise, mainly because its scenes of two brilliant men discussing the nature of the subconscious can't compare with Cronenberg's visual rendering of that subconscious in earlier movies.
  23. After she's forced to confess, director Marc Rothemund doesn't have much to do but marvel at her heroic defiance, and the film is overtaken by its talkiness, claustrophobia, and polarized morality.
  24. This adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's novel is commercial to the core.
  25. If you don't care about the first version, or what director Jonathan Demme's name once meant, the cast does an OK job with Daniel Pyne and Dean Georgaris's routine thriller script.
  26. Stiller plays a monster, and when Gerwig goes for him, declaring that she sees his tender side, the development seems like a fond indulgence on the part of writer-director Noah Baumbach.
  27. The cluttered narrative leaves little room for character development, though director Niels Arden Oplev does manage to accommodate plenty of gratuitous torture and rape.
  28. The project reeks of commercial calculation, which is just tolerable until Walker, in search of a story arc, follows two chorus members with serious illnesses into the hospital.
  29. Cox's style is a step beyond camp into a comedy of pure disgust; much of the film is churlishly unpleasant, but there's a core of genuine anger that gives the project an emotional validation lacking in the flabby American comedies of the early 80s.

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