Chicago Sun-Times' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 4,716 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 9.4 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 Muscle Shoals
Lowest review score: 0 Dirty Love
Score distribution:
4,716 movie reviews
  1. 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.
  2. Benton has made better movies, but this one has no organic reality.
  3. 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.
  4. A conspiracy thriller that begins well and makes good points, but it flies off the rails in the last 30 minutes.
  5. The movie isn't as funny or entertaining as "Evil Dead II," however, maybe because the comic approach seems recycled.
  6. The movie was produced by Seinfeld, and protects him. The visuals tend toward the dim, the gray and the washed-out, and you wish instead of spending a year with their store-boughts, they'd spent a month and used the leftover to hire a cinematographer.
  7. To be fair, this tawdry dose of pulp fiction ("inspired by real events") is not a complete waste of time. It offers the marginal pleasure of an all-star cast slumming their way through a thicket of routine plotting, almost laughable dialogue and the constant blaze of tommy guns.
  8. Da Sweet Blood of Jesus is a bold but wildly uneven, bloody mess of a film, sunk in large part by the subpar performances by nearly every major character in nearly every major role.
  9. The films portray the Klan as criminal, racist and anonymous, but those have always been its selling points; it is not portrayed as boring and stupid.
  10. There's no way I can recommend this movie to anyone much beyond the Tooth Fairy Believement Age, but I must testify it's pleasant and inoffensive, although the violence in the hockey games seems out of place.
  11. Watching the movie, I enjoyed the settings, the periods and the acting. I can't go so far as to say I cared about the story, particularly after it became clear that its structure was too clever by half.
  12. A plot like this is so hopeless that only acting can redeem it. Lopez pulls her share of the load, looking geuninely smitten by this guy and convincingly crushed when his secret is revealed. But McConaughey is not the right actor for this material.
  13. It's just a sound-and-light show, linked to the marketing push for Pokemon in general.
  14. It's so impossible to care about the characters in the movie that I didn't care if the vampires or werewolves won. I might not have cared in a better movie, either, but I might have been willing to pretend.
  15. 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.
  16. Contraband is based on an Icelandic thriller named "Reykjavik-Rotterdam," which leads you to suspect that neither New Orleans nor Panama City is particularly essential to the plot. That film starred Baltasar Kormakur, who is the director of this one, perhaps as a demonstration that many stars believe they could direct this crap themselves if they ever had the chance.
  17. The skullcap moment appealed to me. It was new. Not much else is new in Survival of the Dead.
  18. A screenplay with the depth and insight of a cable-TV docudrama.
  19. Spike Lee misjudged his material and audience. He doesn't find a successful way to express his feelings, angers and satirical points.
  20. You have to be very talented to work with Meryl Streep. It also helps to know how to use her. The Iron Lady fails in both of these categories.
  21. About the best Friday the 13th movie you could hope for. Its technical credits are excellent. It has a lot of scary and gruesome killings. Not a whole lot of acting is required.
  22. The film expends enormous energy to tell a story that is tedious and contrived.
  23. It's a rambling, unfocused biography of Wyatt Earp, starting when he's a kid and following his development from an awkward would-be lawyer into a slick gunslinger. This is a long journey, in a three-hour film that needs better pacing.
  24. Slides too easily into its sentimentality; the characters should have put up more of a struggle.
  25. 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.
  26. The movie is more concerned with the story line (premiere-fire-threat-rescue) than with painting the time and place.
  27. G
    The problem with G is not merely that the ending doesn't work and feels hopelessly contrived. It's also that the plot adds too many unnecessary characters and subplots, so that the main line gets misplaced.
  28. Possesses the art and craft of a good movie, but not the story.
  29. The film's redeeming feature is that it knows how sad these people are, and finds the correct solution to their problems: They meet in the flesh.
  30. It tries to be the best bad movie that it can be.

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