Christian Science Monitor's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 3,983 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 56% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 42% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.5 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 67
Highest review score: 100 The Secret of NIMH
Lowest review score: 0 The Green Hornet
Score distribution:
3983 movie reviews
  1. Director Ira Sachs, who co-wrote with Mauricio Zacharias, has a plangent feeling for the small-scale travails of “ordinary” people – who, of course, are only ordinary on the surface.
  2. Writer-director David Ayer doesn’t have the right graphic technique for a comic-book-style jamboree – he’s strictly a noirish-pulp guy – and the characters, all of whom are promisingly introduced, fizzle fast.
  3. I will never be comfortable with the concept of Bosch as charming prankster. Just one look at the paintings will cure you of that notion.
  4. The computer-animated portions that function as a real-world framing device are more tedious than fanciful.
  5. For a movie featuring so much emotional discord, Indignation has an overly cautious tone: It could have been made in 1951. I realize that this effect is largely intentional, but that doesn’t altogether excuse it.
  6. The documentary Gleason, a big Sundance hit, is difficult to watch – and that’s the point.
  7. Other welcome faces include Alicia Vikander as a CIA analyst who has a better bead on Bourne than her superiors; Julia Stiles, in a repeat appearance as the spy’s former contact; and Riz Ahmed as a Silicon Valley billionaire.
  8. I do hope there will be many more future installments. I’d like to spend more time with these folks.
  9. All I can say is, I certainly hope this dreary, bleary comedy doesn’t end up serving as a referendum on anything. That would be a disservice to women, not to mention movies.
  10. On its own limited terms, The Infiltrator, like its hero, delivers the goods.
  11. What the film is ultimately about is the extent to which love and caring can help turn a life around for a person deemed beyond reach.
  12. Kore-eda has a gift for portraying goodness that is quite rare. He does so without a whisper of banality.
  13. Which is not to say the movie is anything less than diverting. It’s just that diverting is often all it is.
  14. The result is that the wonderment, with nothing serious at risk, seems lackluster.
  15. With all this working against it, Les Cowboys strikes a fresh chord. The rise of jihadism has infused this revenge scenario with (all too literally) new blood.
  16. The mordancy of this movie will not surprise Solondz devotees, but unknowing audiences expecting a raunchy teen comedy from the film’s title should be forewarned. This is not “American Pie” in a kennel.
  17. In supporting roles, Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Rachel, the equally valiant house slave Newton makes his common-law wife, and Mahershala Ali as Moses, the leader of the renegade slaves, provide some powerful moments.
  18. The film’s most joyous performer is the bagpiper Cristina Pato, known as “the Jimi Hendrix of Galicia,” who is such a powerhouse that she could probably upstage the Rolling Stones (in their prime).
  19. There are some rollicky moments in Finding Dory, which comes 13 years after the markedly better “Finding Nemo,” both directed by Andrew Stanton.
  20. Vitkova’s direction is big on long lingering shots of dreariness. With a 2-1/2-hour running time, that’s a lot of dreariness.
  21. My worst fears were confirmed almost from the start. In order to inject some pep into the proceedings, Law has been encouraged to play Wolfe as a motormouthed rhapsodist who seems less inspired than unhinged. He’s exhaustingly exuberant.
  22. What separates Charles Ferguson’s Time to Choose from the many other documentaries about climate change is that, after dutifully presenting many of the usual horrifying climate statistics, it lays out a series of possible solutions, already available, to the crisis.
  23. The only real acting in this movie comes from Janet McTeer and Charles Dance as Will’s aggrieved parents. They bring some ballast to this blubberfest.
  24. What The Witness makes clear, especially for people who know very little about the Kitty Genovese case, is that the scenario of 38 apathetic witnesses was a gross misrepresentation of what actually occurred.
  25. The filmmakers are clearly on Wise’s side, but they are also eminently fair.
  26. Princess, as a singer, is the real deal, with a throaty resonance that at times recalls Nina Simone. What Kutiman, whom she eventually meets in Israel, has given her is a newfound and miraculous platform for her talent.
  27. Some of the franchise stalwarts, such as Jennifer Lawrence’s Mystique, are given too little to do. Most are given too much.
  28. The only heartfelt moment of this movie for me came in the end credits, with its dedication to the late Alan Rickman, who provided the voice for the blue butterfly (and former caterpillar) Absolem. What a voice, what an actor, what a loss.
  29. Writer-director Rebecca Miller never wrests her movie free of its associations with the films of Woody Allen and Noah Baumbach, and some of it plays like a generic indie film rom-com.
  30. The violence is cartoonishly garish and the yuks are few. Crowe, looking (deliberately I presume) flabby and somnolent, is more dead than deadpan, and Gosling, who appears at times to be doing a Lou Costello impression, is, to put it mildly, not in his element.

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