Chicago Sun-Times' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 4,734 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 Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome
Lowest review score: 0 Wolf Creek
Score distribution:
4,734 movie reviews
  1. Plays like an anthology of the best parts from all the Saturday matinee serials ever made.
  2. Pocahontas was given the gift of sensing the whole picture, and that is what Malick founds his film on, not tawdry stories of love and adventure. He is a visionary, and this story requires one.
  3. The first time I saw The Straight Story, I focused on the foreground and liked it. The second time I focused on the background, too, and loved it.
  4. Put the two parts together, and Tarantino has made a masterful saga that celebrates the martial arts genre while kidding it, loving it, and transcending it.
  5. The most accurate movie about campus life that I can remember.
  6. It takes on the resonance of classic tragedy. Tragedy requires the fall of a hero, and one of the achievements of Nixon is to show that greatness was within his reach.
  7. Shot in beautiful tones of black and white (and silver and gray), Nebraska is steeped in nostalgia, regret and bittersweet moments. Yet it’s also a pitch-perfect cinematic poem about the times we live in.
  8. Unflinchingly directed by Steve McQueen, led by Ejiofor’s magnificent work, 12 Years a Slave is what we talk about when we talk about greatness in film.
  9. It is a film with a political point of view, but often its characters lose sight of that, in their fascination with each other and with the girl.
  10. 'Return of the Jedi' is fun, magnificent fun. The movie is a complete entertainment, a feast for the eyes and a delight for the fancy. It's a little amazing how Lucas and his associates keep topping themselves.
  11. David Schwimmer has made one of the year's best films: Powerfully emotional, yes, but also very perceptive.
  12. A smart, intense and moving film that isn't so much about sports as about the war between intuition and statistics. I walked in knowing what the movie was about, but unprepared for its intelligence and depth.
  13. That could have been a good movie, but predictable. Mike Nichols' Silkwood is not predictable.... We realize this is a lot more movie than perhaps we were expecting.
  14. A family film of limitless imagination and surprising joy.
  15. One of the greatest of all American films, but has never received the attention it deserves because of its lack of the proper trappings. Many "great movies'' are by great directors, but Laughton directed only this one film, which was a critical and commercial failure long overshadowed by his acting career.
  16. Spacey, an actor who embodies intelligence in his eyes and voice, is the right choice for Lester Burnham.
  17. Powerfully, painfully honest.
  18. Not only does this second movie match the charm, wit, animation skill and intelligent storytelling of the original, I think it even exceeds it.
  19. The other key character is McCarthy himself, and Clooney uses a masterstroke: He employs actual news footage of McCarthy, who therefore plays himself.
  20. Leconte brings his film to transcendent closure without relying on stale plot devices or the clanking of the plot. He resorts to a kind of poetry. After the film is over, you want to sigh with joy, that in this rude world such civilization is still possible.
  21. Animals is a stark, brilliant, uncompromising, beautifully acted piece of work that deserves to be mentioned with “Panic in Needle Park” and “Requiem for a Dream” as a cautionary tale about drug addiction that doesn’t glamorize but also steers clear of proselytizing.
  22. You hire an actor for his strengths, and Downey would not be strong as a one-dimensional mighty-man. He is strong because he is smart, quick and funny, and because we sense his public persona masks deep private wounds. By building on that, Favreau found his movie, and it's a good one.
  23. A movie for more than one season; it will become a perennial, shared by the generations. It has a haunting, magical quality because it has imagined its world freshly and played true to it,
  24. At a time when digital techniques can show us almost anything, The Blair Witch Project is a reminder that what really scares us is the stuff we can't see.
  25. Allen's writing and directing style is so strong and assured in this film that the actual filmmaking itself becomes a narrative voice.
  26. Breathtaking and terrifying, urgently involved with its characters, it announces a new director of great gifts and passions: Fernando Meirelles.
  27. Each character in this movie is given the dramatic opportunity to look inside himself, to question his own motives as well as the motives of others, and to try to improve his own ways of dealing with a troubled situation. Two of the characters do learn how to adjust; the third doesn't. It's not often we get characters who face those kinds of challenges on the screen, nor directors who seek them out. Ordinary People is an intelligent, perceptive, and deeply moving film.
  28. There are many documentaries angry about the human destruction of the planetary peace. This is one of the very best -- a certain Oscar nominee.
  29. Arthur Penn's Little Big Man is an endlessly entertaining attempt to spin an epic in the form of a yarn.
  30. It is a mystery, this business of life. I can't think of any under cinematic undertaking that allows us to realize that more deeply.

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