Chicago Sun-Times' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 4,736 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 74% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 24% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 9.3 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 We Live in Public
Lowest review score: 0 Movie 43
Score distribution:
4,736 movie reviews
  1. To see strong acting like this is exhilarating. In a time of flashy directors who slice and dice their films in a dizzy editing rhythm, it is important to remember that films can look and listen and attentively sympathize with their characters. Directors grow great by subtracting, not adding, and Eastwood does nothing for show, everything for effect.
  2. Coppola is a fascinating director. She sees, and we see exactly what she sees. There is little attempt here to observe a plot. All the attention is on the handful of characters, on Johnny.
  3. One of the greatest of all fantasy films.
  4. This is clearly one of the best of the year's films. Every time an animated film is successful, you have to read all over again about how animation isn't "just for children" but "for the whole family," and "even for adults going on their own." No kidding!
  5. The film is visually masterful. It's in black and white, of course.
  6. Here is the most passionate and tender love story in many years, so touching because it is not about a story, not about stars, not about a plot, not about sex, not about nudity, but about LOVE itself.
  7. The movie is carefully modulated to draw us deeper and deeper into the situation, and uses no contrived plot devices to superimpose plot jolts on what is, after all, a story involving four civilized people who are only trying, each in a different way, to find happiness.
  8. Once again, [Cameron] has silenced the doubters by simply delivering an extraordinary film. There is still at least one man in Hollywood who knows how to spend $250 million, or was it $300 million, wisely.
  9. In the world of this film, conventional piety is overturned and we see into the soul of a human monster.
  10. There is a word to describe Ponyo, and that word is magical. This poetic, visually breathtaking work by the greatest of all animators has such deep charm that adults and children will both be touched.
  11. Brokeback Mountain has been described as "a gay cowboy movie," which is a cruel simplification. It is the story of a time and place where two men are forced to deny the only great passion either one will ever feel. Their tragedy is universal.
  12. One reason for the fascination of Woody Allen's Match Point is that each and every character is rotten.
  13. The best approach is to begin with the characters, because the wonderful, sad, touching The Edge of Heaven is more about its characters than about its story
  14. One of the funniest, most intelligent, most original films.
  15. As a fictional, big-budget, 3-D, epic interpretation of Moses’ journey, Exodus: Gods and Kings is spectacular.
  16. Wherever you live, when this film opens, it will be the best film in town.
  17. The acting and the best dialogue passages have an impact that has not dimmed; it is still possible to feel the power of the film and of Brando and Kazan, who changed American movie acting forever.
  18. It's gloriously absurd. This movie has holes in it big enough to drive the whole movie through. The laws of physics seem to be suspended here the same way as in a Road Runner cartoon.
  19. In its own sloppy, raunchy, sophomoric, occasionally self-pleased and consistently energetic way, This Is the End is just about perfect at executing its mission, which is to poke fun at its stars, exhaust every R-rated possibility to get a laugh, and even sneak in a few insights into Hollywood, the celebrity culture and the nature of faith.
  20. Painful family issues are more likely to stay beneath the surface, known to everyone but not spoken of. Still Walking, a magnificent new film from Japan, is very wise about that, and very true.
  21. The movie heroes who affect me most are not extroverted. They don't strut, speechify and lead armies. They have no superpowers. They are ordinary people who are faced with a need and rise to the occasion. Ree Dolly is such a hero.
  22. Los Angeles always seems to be waiting for something. Permanence seems out of reach; some great apocalyptic event is on the horizon, and people view the future tentatively. Robert Altman's Short Cuts captures that uneasiness perfectly.
  23. Trucker sets out on a difficult and tricky path, and doesn't put a foot wrong.
  24. This is a powerful film and a stark visual accomplishment, but no thanks to Gabita (Laura Vasiliu). The driving character is her roommate Otilia (Anamaria Marinca), who does all the heavy lifting.
  25. Doubt has exact and merciless writing, powerful performances and timeless relevance. It causes us to start thinking with the first shot, and we never stop. Think how rare that is in a film.
  26. Movies about high school misfits are common; this is an uncommon one. Terri, so convincingly played by Jacob Wysocki, is smart, gentle and instinctively wise.
  27. A film like "Hoop Dreams" is what the movies are for. It takes us, shakes us, and make us think in new ways about the world around us. It gives us the impression of having touched life itself.
  28. This is a breathless, exciting story, heartbreaking and exhilarating at the same time.
  29. The movie is a satire that contains just enough realistic ballast to be teasingly plausible; like "Dr. Strangelove," it makes you laugh, and then it makes you wonder.
  30. Have I mentioned A Serious Man is so rich and funny? This isn't a laugh-laugh movie, but a wince-wince movie. Those can be funny too.

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