Chicago Sun-Times' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 4,621 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 75% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 23% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 9.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 The Kite Runner
Lowest review score: 0 Chaos
Score distribution:
4,621 movie reviews
  1. All of this material, written by Seinfeld and writers associated with his television series, tries hard, but never really takes off.
  2. The movie leaves no heartstring untugged. It even has a beloved old dog, and you know what happens to beloved old dogs in movies like this. Or if you don't, I don't have the heart to tell you.
  3. The movie wants to be good-hearted but is somehow sort of grudging. It should have gone all the way. I think Fred Claus should have been meaner if he was going to be funnier, and Santa should have been up to something nefarious, instead of the jolly old ho-ho-ho routine.
  4. If you have seen ads or trailers suggesting that horrible things pounce on people, and they make you think you want to see this movie, you will be correct. It is a competently made Horrible Things Pouncing on People Movie. If you think Frank Darabont has equaled the "Shawshank" and "Green Mile" track record, you will be sadly mistaken.
  5. About as good as a movie with these characters can probably be, and I am well aware that I am the wrong audience for this movie.
  6. The identical premise is used in Sidney Lumet's "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead," which is like a master class in how Allen goes wrong.
  7. The movie has terrific if completely unbelievable special effects. The actors had fun, I guess. You might, too, if you like goofiness like this.
  8. Consider for a moment how this movie might play if it took itself seriously. Would it be better than as a comedy? I suspect so.
  9. An odd, desperate film, lost in its own audacity, and yet there are passages of surreal beauty and preposterous invention that I have to admire. The film doesn't work, and indeed seems to have no clear idea of what its job is, and yet (sigh) there is the temptation to forgive its trespasses simply because it is utterly, if pointlessly, original.
  10. The movie itself is good and shows promise, except for the ending, when Trier shouldn't have been so poetic. Not only does Reprise generate itself, it contains its own review.
  11. A brave and ambitious but chaotic attempt at political satire.
  12. Children should not be allowed within a mile of this film, but it will appeal to "Jackass" fans and other devotees of the joyously ignorant.
  13. Here is a 145-minute movie containing one (1) line of truly witty dialogue: "Her 40s is the last age at which a bride can be photographed without the unintended Diane Arbus subtext."
  14. This is a fairly bad movie, and yet at the same time maybe about as good as it could be. There may not be an 8-year-old alive who would not love it.
  15. It's one of those off-balance movies that seems searching for the right tone.
  16. This movie wasn't made for me. It was made for the people who will love it, of which there may be a multitude. The stage musical has sold 30 million tickets, and I feel like the grouch at the party.
  17. A mild pleasure from one end to the other, but not much more. Maybe that's enough, serving as a reminder that movie comedies still can be about ordinary people and do not necessarily have to feature vulgarity as their centerpiece.
  18. Well, you can't fault the actors. That must mean it's the fault of the writer and director. Take is a monotonous slog through dirgeland, telling a story that seems strung out beyond all reason, with flashbacks upon flashbacks delaying interminably the underwhelming climax.
  19. Don't ever let this happen again to James Bond. Quantum of Solace is his 22nd film and he will survive it, but for the 23rd it is necessary to go back to the drawing board and redesign from the ground up. Please understand: James Bond is not an action hero!
  20. Most of the running time is occupied by action sequences, chase sequences, motorcycle sequences, plow-truck sequences, helicopter sequences, fighter-plane sequences, towering android sequences and fistfights. It gives you all the pleasure of a video game without the bother of having to play it.
  21. Lacks some of the idiocy of your average teenage rom-com. But it doesn't bring much to the party. It sort of ambles along, with two nice people at the center of a human scavenger hunt. It's not much of a film, but it sort gets you halfway there, like a Yugo.
  22. The word preposterous is too moderate to describe Eagle Eye. This film contains not a single plausible moment after the opening sequence, and that's borderline. It's not an assault on intelligence. It's an assault on consciousness.
  23. It follows the well-worn pathways of countless police dramas before it.
  24. Assembled from the debris of countless worn-out images of the Deep South and is indeed beautifully photographed. But the writer-director, Deborah Kampmeier, has become inflamed by the imagery and trusts it as the material for a story, which seems grotesque and lurid.
  25. A pointless exercise in "shocking" behavior.
  26. This movie doesn't contain "offensive language." The offensive language contains the movie.
  27. I enjoyed Ashes of Time Redux, up to a point. It's great-looking, and the characters all know what they would, although we do not.
  28. If you don't already know who Bruce Campbell is, it will set you searching for other Bruce Campbell films on the theory that they can't all be like this. Start with "Evil Dead II," is my advice. Not to forget "Bubba Ho-Tep." In fact, start with them before My Name Is Bruce, which is low midrange in the Master's oeuvre.
  29. We got two gold-record singers and they don't sing? So? We got five Oscar-winning actors, and they don't need to act much.
  30. It looks great, it hurtles through its paces and is well-acted. The soundtrack is like elevator music if the elevator were in a death plunge. The special effects are state of the art. Its only flaw is that it's disgusting.

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