Chicago Sun-Times' Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 5,428 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 8.3 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 71
Highest review score: 100 Whale Rider
Lowest review score: 0 Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo
Score distribution:
5428 movie reviews
  1. It's a long, shapeless, undisciplined mess, and every once in awhile it generates a big laugh.
  2. From its juvenile double entendre title to its fascination with prison rape and homophobic humor, “Get Hard” practically announces itself as an offensive, tired and unimaginative comedy in nearly every scene. And yet I didn’t hate it because Will Ferrell and Kevin Hart had such terrific comedic chemistry.
  3. The Shack is a well-acted and sometimes moving but far too often slow-paced and unconvincing spiritual journey.
  4. They had a great idea here. It's too bad they didn't follow it through on a human level, instead of making it feel made up and artificial and twice-removed, from the everyday experience it pretends to be about.
  5. As an idea, the film is fascinating, but as an experience it grows tedious; the concerts lack closeups, the sex lacks context, and Antarctica could use a few penguins.
  6. That the new Casanova lacks such wit is fatal. Heath Ledger is a good actor but Hallstrom's film is busy and unfocused, giving us the view of Casanova's ceaseless activity but not the excitement. It's a sitcom when what is wanted is comic opera.
  7. The movie is pleasant enough, but never quite reaches critical mass as a comedy.
  8. They are, in fact, likable. That's why their comedy is so sad.
  9. The big action set pieces fizzle. And that’s not good for a fantasy adventure movie, especially when the fantasy component is frequently undercut by sub-standard special effects.
  10. Nymphomaniac Part 1 grows flat and monotonous, and comes across as just what it is: half a film.
  11. Strives hard to replicate the screwball comedy but ends up being a lot more screwball than comedy.
  12. The plot is lame, but that doesn't matter, because Dumb and Dumber is essentially pitched at the level of an "Airplane!"-style movie, with rapid-fire sight gags.
  13. My own feeling is that the film is one more assault on the notion that young American audiences might be expected to enjoy films with at least some subtlety and depth and pacing and occasional quietness. The filmmakers apparently believe their audience suffers from ADD, and so they supply breakneck action and screaming sound volumes at all times.
  14. A sometimes wickedly funny but ultimately sour, loud, draining tale of one of the most dysfunctional families in modern American drama. And that’s saying a lot.
  15. Director Scott Derrickson and his co-writer, Paul Harris Boardman, deliver a routine procedural with unremarkable frights.
  16. The Distinguished Gentleman prefers to give us measured laughs at a leisurely pace, and then it settles for the sellout upbeat ending. Ho hum.
  17. The Fog is encouraging because it contains another demonstration of Carpenter's considerable directing talents. He picked the wrong story, I think, but he directs it with a flourish. This isn't a great movie but it does show great promise from Carpenter.
  18. A few loopholes I can forgive. But when a plot is riddled with them -- I get distracted.
  19. Soppy and sentimental, it evokes "Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood" without improving on it.
  20. On a technical level, there's a lot to be said for Die Hard. It's when we get to some of the unnecessary adornments of the script that the movie shoots itself in the foot.
  21. House of Wax is not a good movie but it is an efficient one, and will deliver most of what anyone attending House of Wax could reasonably expect, assuming it would be unreasonable to expect very much.
  22. A big, clunky movie containing some sensational sights but lacking the zest and joyous energy we expect from Steven Spielberg.
  23. All very nice, sometimes we smile, but there's nothing compelling.
  24. The kind of movie where you walk in, watch the first 10 minutes, know exactly where it's going, and hope devoutly that you're wrong.
  25. This is a very far from perfect movie, and it ends on an unsatisfactory note.
  26. Black somehow feels reigned in; shaved and barbered, he's lost his anarchic passion and is merely playing a comic role instead of transforming it into a personal mission.
  27. Because the film is well-acted and written with intelligence, it might be worth seeing, despite my objections. I suspect my own feelings.
  28. It's an overwrought Gothic melodrama that has a nice first act before it descends into shameless absurdity.
  29. Until the plot becomes intolerably cornball, there's charm in the story.
  30. 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.

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