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. The kind of movie beloved by people who never go to the movies, because they are primarily interested in something else--the Civil War, for example--and think historical accuracy is a virtue instead of an attribute.
  2. Just when it seems about to become a real corker of an adventure movie, plunges into incomprehensible action, idiotic dialogue, inexplicable motivations, causes without effects, effects without causes, and general lunacy. What a mess.
  3. All very nice, sometimes we smile, but there's nothing compelling.
  4. Although I did not understand the story, I would have appreciated a great deal less explanation. All through the movie, characters are pausing in order to offer arcane back-stories and historical perspectives and metaphysical insights and occult orientations. They talk and talk and somehow their words do not light up any synapses in my brain.
  5. While the lead actors deliver lovely performances, it’s a shame they have to work with material so ham-handed and overbearing.
  6. Everyone in The Boy Next Door has to behave like an idiot at least once or twice, just so the movie can keep going. It’s an act of mercy when it finally grinds to a halt.
  7. It is happy to be goofy.
  8. There must be humor here somewhere.
  9. If you like the comic strip, now in its 56th year, maybe you'll like it, maybe not. Marmaduke's personality isn't nearly as engaging as Garfield's. Then again, if personality is what you're in the market for, maybe you shouldn't be considering a lip-synched talking animal comedy in the first place.
  10. The kind of movie Mad magazine prays for. It is so earnest, so overwrought and so wildly implausible that it begs to be parodied.
  11. If the movie is a lost cause, it may at least showcase actors who have better things ahead of them.
  12. A pleasant, genial, good-hearted, sometimes icky comedy that's like spending a weekend with well-meaning people you don't want to see again any time real soon.
  13. It’s badly written and inertly directed, with actors who don’t have a clue what drives their characters. This is one of those rare films that contains no chemistry at all. None. The actors scarcely seem to be in the same scenes together.
  14. I laughed, yes, I did, several times during Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo. That's proof, if any is required, that I still possess streaks of immaturity and vulgarity.
  15. Sweet, in its meandering way. It has no meanness in it, no cynicism, no desire to be anything other than what it is, an evocation of the fun of living your life as a skateboarder.
  16. There's so much flashing forward and backward, so many spins of fate, so many chapters in the journals, that after awhile I felt that I, as well as time, was being jerked around.
  17. The movie crosses two formulas -- Fish Out of Water and Coming of Age -- fairly effectively. Because it isn't wall-to-wall action but actually bothers to develop its characters and take an interest in them, it was not at first considered commercial by its distributor, New Line, and languished on the shelf for two years.
  18. Here's a case of two actors who do everything humanly possible to create characters who are sweet and believable, and are defeated by a screenplay that forces them into bizarre, implausible behavior.
  19. Love may or may not be endless, but there’s no limit to what can be contrived in a movie like this.
  20. Slap-happy entertainment painted in broad strokes, two coats thick.
  21. The movie is silly beyond comprehension, and even if it weren't silly, it would still be beyond comprehension.
  22. So heavy on incident, contrivance, coincidence, improbability, sudden reversals and dizzying flash-forwards (sometimes years at a time) that it seems a wonder the characters don't crash into each other in the confusion.
  23. It's not the romcom that's so entertaining, anyway; it's the slapstick.
  24. The physical look of the picture is splendid. The screenplay is dead on arrival. The noise level is torture.
  25. The movie should be praying to St. Jude, patron saint of lost causes. Maybe he could perform a miracle and turn this into a cable offering, so no one has to buy a ticket to see it.
  26. There's a point at which the plot crosses an invisible line, becoming so preposterous that it's no longer moving and is just plain weird.
  27. Here’s proof two females can make a bickering-opposites-action-comedy that’s just as lousy and sour as any clunker starring two guys.
  28. Through superhuman effort of the will, I did not walk out of The Hot Chick, but reader, I confess I could not sit through the credits.
  29. The movie is a paid holiday for its director, Harold Becker. I say this because I know what Becker is capable of.
  30. The movie itself is genial and unfocused and tired.

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