Chicago Tribune's Scores

For 5,181 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 63% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 35% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.9 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Greenberg
Lowest review score: 0 Did You Hear About the Morgans?
Score distribution:
5181 movie reviews
  1. Writer-director Robert Eggers' "New England folk tale" film isn't likely to go bonkers in the popular culture the way "Blair Witch" did. But it's an infinitely richer, more meticulous, more elegant and more unnerving horror film — the best since "The Babadook," and very likely a 21st century classic in its hardy yet malleable genre.
  2. Extraordinary.
  3. It put a smile on my face that never left for 117 minutes.
  4. Jafar Panahi of Iran is one of his country's great filmmakers, and Offside is his best movie to date.
  5. Kubrick's contributions are his wit and his eye. The wit, too much at times, is as biting as in "Dr. Strangelove," and the production, while of another order, is as spectacular as in "2001." [11 Feb 1972]
    • Chicago Tribune
  6. It's a movie that's so personal, naked and vulnerable that you can understand why some of its humor seems rough, some of its visuals excessive. But Crooklyn has a quality not as obvious in any Lee film since "Do the Right Thing": the sense of a whole world opening, rich and real, before your eyes. [13 May 1994, p.A]
    • Chicago Tribune
  7. Moskowitz may soon find himself in the same boat as many of the artists he is analyzing, because Stone Reader is going to be one tough act to follow.
  8. All the "Star Wars" movies will continue to entertain us for many years to come. They were grand fun, and this last one's a corker.
  9. A timeless romantic thriller that steeps us in one of those great artificial movie worlds that become more overpowering than reality itself.
  10. The wondrous cinematography is by Gokhan Tiryaki. It is not an easy picture. Not many masterpieces are.
  11. It works from a specific place and lets audiences relate to that place, and the people in it, like trusted intimates.
  12. This is one of the real finds of 2008.
  13. This is an amazing movie, released at a frightening time and made under remarkable circumstances.
  14. A gem made by a filmmaker who loves life, and knows how to capture its ebb and flow and sweet complication.
  15. David Lowery's film A Ghost Story is best seen a second time, though obeying the customary rules of time and cinema, you'll have the mysterious pleasure of seeing it a first time to get there.
  16. 25th Hour struck me as one of the best movies of 2002, but it's also a film that will strike some of its audience as ethically dubious or threatening.
  17. My Left Foot celebrates the nurturing, healing power of the family unit while avoiding every cliche about the disabled. [2 Feb 1990, p.C]
    • Chicago Tribune
  18. A hard-core movie with a soft, light-hearted center and an edge like a knife.
    • Chicago Tribune
    • 89 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Most important, several elements -- the film's tough, new ending; a sly, fleeting dissolve of a unicorn, not in the original; and a brilliant, trompe d'oeil flicker of life in a shot of a still photograph -- bring Deckard's existential dilemma into focus. [11 Sept 1992]
    • Chicago Tribune
  19. No
    No succeeds, wonderfully, because it knows how to sell itself. It is cool, witty, technically dazzling in a low-key and convincing way.
  20. I loved this movie madly, and so will many of you.
    • Chicago Tribune
  21. Georgia, written with rare honesty and economy by Leigh's mother, Barbara Turner, and very sensitively directed by Ulu Grosbard, is a tough-minded look at show business and families. [10 Jan 1996]
    • Chicago Tribune
  22. Though much of Naked Lunch is flip, hip and hilariously funny, it never wanders far from a profoundly melancholic undertone - Cronenberg's unshakable sense of loneliness, isolation and anxiety. [10 Jan 1992]
    • Chicago Tribune
  23. Day-Lewis... the role of a lifetime.
  24. A kinetic delight, Reprise comes from director Joachim Trier, born in Denmark but raised in Oslo, Norway, and it’s a highlight of the filmgoing year so far.
  25. Like most Godard, it can be watched repeatedly, always yielding new secrets and beauties. Most profound of all, perhaps, are those incredible black-and-white images of Paris.
  26. Moviegoers should be almost as entranced by the teeming, glorious landscapes and dark, bloody battlegrounds of Two Towers: astonishing midpoint of an epic movie fantasy journey for the ages.
  27. "All right" doesn't begin to describe it. The Kids Are All Right is wonderful. Here is a film that respects and enjoys all of its characters, the give-and-take and recklessness and wisdom of any functioning family unit, conventional or un-.
  28. This is a great and necessary document in support of a two-state solution. Even those who don't believe in such a solution may find their minds changed by The Gatekeepers.
  29. This is a sumptuous work, from its unconventional title sequence of a woman dancing hard in the streets to its provocative ending with conflicting quotes from Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr .[30 June 1989, Friday, p.A]
    • Chicago Tribune
  30. The word masterpiece costs nothing to write and means less than nothing in an age when every third picture and each new Clint Eastwood project is proclaimed as such. After two viewings, however, Letters From Iwo Jima strikes me as the peak achievement in Eastwood's hallowed career.
  31. It's as thrilling and lushly beautiful a movie as has been released all year, matched only by Zhang's epic "Hero." And I think this film is the more powerful.
  32. An improbable masterpiece -- a bizarre mixture of grandly operatic visuals, grim brutality and sordid violence that keeps wrenching you from one extreme to the other.
  33. A movie about the passions of simple people, and it's done with such extraordinary empathy and commitment that it all but pulls you under. [29 November 1996, Friday, p.A]
    • Chicago Tribune
  34. The fans of their best work -- "Blood Simple, "Raising Arizona," "Barton Fink" -- now can add Fargo to the list, pushing the Coens to the first rank of contemporary American filmmakers. [8 March 1996, Friday, p.B]
    • Chicago Tribune
  35. 1966 French masterpiece -- the finest, most deeply personal work of a filmmaker who has been compared, justifiably, to both Dostoyevsky and Bach.
  36. Extremely moving, exceedingly droll, flawlessly voice-acted.
  37. A brilliant work of the imagination capable of truly seizing and igniting our fantasies.
  38. Its sense of humor is more sly, more sophisticated and more interesting than most PG-13 or R-rated comedies at the moment. The film may be animated, and largely taken up with rats, but its pulse is gratifyingly human.
  39. David Cronenberg's The Fly is that absolute rarity of the '80s: a film that is at once a pure, personal expression and a superbly successful commercial enterprise. [15 Aug 1986]
    • Chicago Tribune
  40. A rare example of a literary film that preserves the best of its source while creatively filling up on it.
    • Chicago Tribune
  41. Nobody ever gathered together a sharper, more pungent international "Golden Age" cast (including Claude Rains, Sydney Greenstreet, Peter Lorre, Paul Henreid, Conrad Veidt, S.Z. Sakall, Marcel Dalio, Leonid Kinskey, John Qualen and Curt Bois) in a more imperishable exotic movieland cabaret (Rick's) than Warner Bros. producer Hal Wallis and director Michael Curtiz did in this greatest of all Hollywood World War II adventure romances.
  42. This is a small, tight, starkly claustrophobic film, closer in impact to Elie Wiesel's first-person account of the concentration camps, "Night," than to the artful, slightly suspect emotional catharsis of director Steven Spielberg's "Schindler's List."
  43. This French documentary gives us unprecedented intimacy and sweep.
  44. It's a glorious film, in large part because it is a reminder of in what low regard we often hold those of "a certain age." You'll come out of the theater full of respect and admiration for these people.
  45. This one slice of the American experience amounts to one of the best films of the year.
  46. Beautifully wrought, darkly funny and finally devastating, My Own Private Idaho almost single-handedly revives the notion of personal filmmaking in the United States. [18 Oct 1991]
    • Chicago Tribune
  47. Stylish, ingenious and gleaming with charm, wit and malice, it's another expert blend of domestic drama and crime thriller, a vivisection of the bourgeoisie.
  48. As magnificent as a high-masted 19th-century British warship, as explosive as a Napoleonic-era ocean battle seen above the cannon's mouth... probably the best movie of its kind ever made.
  49. One of the most excitingly contemporary musicals ever made.
    • Chicago Tribune
  50. It's Chekhovian screwball, a perfect little tale of love (or thereabouts) in bloom among the weeds of an ordinary life. It feels like a classic already.
  51. I love it, not simply because I love Chekhov or because I've loved so much of Ceylan's earlier work. I love it because the director, having come into his own as a master international filmmaker years ago, gives us so much to see and think about, so many astringent observations about life's compromises and longings.
  52. Through technical virtuosity at every artistic level -- including the brilliant acting debut of playwright Jason Miller as the doubt-filed priest who assists Von Sydow in the exorcism -- The Exorcist becomes more than a shocking movie: a film with a strong, positive force.
  53. While I may argue with the little guy's taste in musicals, it's remarkable to see any film, in any genre, blend honest sentiment with genuine wit and a visual landscape unlike any other.
  54. A wildly original movie with astonishingly varied moods and influences.
  55. Leigh is an artist not at all blind to the world's darkness and pain. But the generosity and togetherness he and his company show in Secrets and Lies is something the movies -- and the world -- truly need. [25 October 1996, Friday, p.A]
    • Chicago Tribune
  56. This dark, melancholic film is a reminder -- never more necessary than now -- of what the American cinema is capable of, in the way of expressing a mature, morally complex and challenging view of the world. [7 Aug 1992]
  57. The film is a singular achievement, a piece of realist cinema with the pull of a suspense thriller.
  58. Brilliant documentary.
  59. An indelible portrait of an American family at its most blithely macabre.
  60. This is the Paris -- and the mad, beautiful young Parisienne -- we look for in dreams.
  61. Davies has said that he loves the "poetry of the ordinary." In that sense, he doesn't just wax nostalgic about the good old days, but rather, he makes us question and reevaluate those things we may not remember so readily-not the general, but the specific.
  62. This is a picture that may sound sappy but probably will enrapture audiences lucky enough to catch it. [19 May 1995, p.L]
    • Chicago Tribune
  63. Sensational, grandly sinister and not for the kids, The Dark Knight elevates pulp to a very high level.
  64. It's perhaps only because it can't be seen in its full glory on television that "Lawrence" isn't ranked more highly on some recent all-time "best film" lists. But it belongs near the very top. It's an astonishing, unrepeatable epic.
  65. A film which should gratify any audience starved for intelligent dialogue, realistic portrayals of romance and lovely, non-cliched open-air photography.
  66. Borat is a rarity: a comedy whose middle name is danger, or as the Kazakhs say, kauwip-kater.
  67. From its initial first-person, behind-the-wheel viewpoint to its final implication of all-pervasive surveillance, Panahi creates a fascinating hybrid that becomes a microcosm of Tehran.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Gordon's documentary proves better than 90 percent of the manufactured stories out this summer. One can breathe a sigh of relief that it was done right and not cobbled into another bad fictional comedy.
  68. I have written elsewhere that love stories seem to be in short supply these days, as they have been in the last decade of American movies. . . . But the hunger for love on the screen is there, and director Spielberg gives it to us in "E.T.," and because the lovers are a little boy and a little creature, we accept it. Of such simple concepts, timeless entertainments are made.
  69. A spellbinder: provocatively conceived, gorgeously shot and masterfully executed.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Armstrong and screenwriter Robin Swicord have pared the work's sentimentality and bolstered its intellectual content, [21 Dec 1994]
    • Chicago Tribune
  70. It's tantalizing, delectable and randy, a movie of melting eroticism and toothsome humor.
    • Chicago Tribune
  71. A brash romantic comedy that has a serious purpose at its core.
    • Chicago Tribune
  72. This is a terrific movie: jolting, savage, horrifically funny, nightmarishly exciting but also brainy and compassionate.
  73. Takes a simple story and molds it into something eloquent and menacing.
  74. A dazzling mosaic, alert to the ebb and flow of human resilience in the face of everyday crises.
  75. For its first hour is as exciting an action picture as the Die Hard films. The tension and humor level tail off a bit toward the conclusion, but Steven Seagal and Chicago director Andy Davis clearly declare themselves as top-flight talent.
  76. It's simply a treat to watch Sandberg's style on display in Annabelle: Creation, filled with circling dolly shots that reveal and conceal evil in torturously teasing ways, effective narrative use of practical lighting for dramatic effect, and heart-pounding sound effects and a score of screaming strings.
  77. With humor, honesty and awe, Feuerzeig's portrait may love Daniel Johnston, but it won't give his parents much hope.
  78. Two suggestions as you watch it: Never take anything for granted, and keep your hand on your wallet as you leave the theater.
  79. Much of the action takes place in the couple's haphazard apartment, but the movie really does feel like a movie, with Farhadi's camera unobtrusively energizing the close-quarters exchanges, both verbal and non-verbal. The acting is splendid.
  80. It's a movie of uncommon eloquence and elegance, acted by a truly gifted cast.
  81. There's a zest and brilliance in Neil Jordan's racy heist thriller The Good Thief that makes it almost intoxicating to watch.
  82. An off-center but exceptional boxing film I prefer in every aspect, especially one: It feels like it comes from real life as well as the movies.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    As Nirvana's Kurt Cobain acknowledges in the opening quote, without the Pixies there would be no "Smells Like Teen Spirit."
  83. Has some of the wit, sass and sexual candor of an "Annie Hall." But it covers the same kind of territory with more bite and bile.
  84. Haneke’s vision is gripping. The craftsmanship, classically shaped narrative and icy visual beauty cannot be denied.
  85. A good and eloquent Wyoming-set love story with a great performance at its heart.
  86. With 20 additional minutes of screen time, the director's cut of Richard Kelly's genre-splicing "Donnie Darko" offers new viewers a second chance to discover his mind-bending masterwork.
  87. It's a lot. But if you're at all inclined, it's just right.
  88. Young Goethe in Love wants only to engage an audience with a capital-R Romantic ideal of Goethe's first love. It does so very well. And it was well worth the effort.
  89. This is a true New York movie, though in its ear and eye for atmospheric beauty it feels more French.
  90. Had this ambitious head trip come to pass, it might've made Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey" look like "Go, Dog. Go!"
  91. It's a brutally convincing movie about two hell-bent young Turkish-German lovers dancing on the edge of destruction in a Hamburg underworld of drugs and casual sex. Yet it's also compassionate and even tender.
  92. Chabrol's final picture was designed with Depardieu in mind. It's a small work. Yet it's so pleasurably well-made, so obviously the work of major talents in a comfortable groove, why carp about the scale or ambition of the project?
  93. Belongs to that brand of sweeping, conflict-era drama epitomized by "Saving Private Ryan," "Gone with the Wind" and TV miniseries "North and South."
  94. Dafoe manages to draw us into the mystery, anguish and joy of the holy life. This is anything but another one of those boring biblical costume epics. There is genuine challenge and hope in this movie. [12 Aug 1988, p.A]
    • Chicago Tribune
  95. A breezy diary from a pair of first-time farmers, as well as a wry rebuke to a nation devoted to eating cheaply but not necessarily well, King Corn makes its points without much finger-wagging.
  96. The movie is a small marvel of contained spaces, exploited beautifully by Kusama and cinematographer Bobby Shore.

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