Christian Science Monitor's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 3,534 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 4.2 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 Last Days
Lowest review score: 0 Identity Thief
Score distribution:
3,534 movie reviews
  1. One of the sweetest and most heartfelt movies ever made about a life in the theater.
  2. An amazing, galvanic experience. It's about the hushed-up story of Benito Mussolini's first wife and child, but no one will ever mistake this movie for a standard biopic. It's too raw, too primal.
  3. Altogether fascinating.
  4. Granik filmed in actual locations and enlisted many locals as actors. They blend unobtrusively with the professionals in the cast.
  5. Fan's camera moves sinuously through these people's lives and gives a human face to a national panorama.
  6. A remarkable movie about a remarkable friendship. It honors the audience's intelligence, which makes it a double rarity.
  7. A breathtakingly beautiful achievement in every way.
  8. A quintessential Mike Leigh performance. It deepens as it goes along until, in the end, in its final close-up, it overwhelms.
  9. Despite its length, it is one of the most consistently engrossing and powerful movies ever made.
  10. It's a transcendently uplifting tragedy.
  11. These paintings speak to us; they both compress and elongate time. In Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Herzog is reaching for ways to comprehend what he imagines to be the emblems of the birth of the modern soul.
  12. Says Lauro: "This is about as close as you can get to the way it sounded during slavery days." Lauro and McGlynn understand, too, that these clips must be experienced whole. They let the music unfold in real time, not snippets.
  13. A semi-improvised, microbudget marvel with a range of feeling that shames most big-budget star-driven movies.
  14. Clooney and Payne are coconspirators, too. They know that the story they are telling is too emotionally complicated to muck up with a lot of preening and artifice. They head right into the sad and crazymaking humor of the situation. This is a modest marvel of a movie.
  15. A Separation is not the work of a constrained artist. It's a great movie in which the full range of human interaction seems to play itself out before our eyes.
  16. The reason we feel so close to Socha, a man who at first seems nothing more than a racist scoundrel, is that his moral odyssey, with its advances and retreats, is so emotionally believable.
  17. A marvelously captivating animated feature.
  18. In Panahi's case, he is insuperably handicapped by his current constraints. And yet, despite everything, here is This Is Not a Film, which is emphatically a film – and an extraordinary one.
  19. By holding the shot, as she so often does in this film, Takesue is encouraging audiences to take a deep, long look at things they might otherwise miss.
  20. The performances by Phoenix and Hoffman are studies in contrast. Phoenix carries himself with a jagged, lurching, simianlike grace while Hoffman gives Dodd a calm deliberateness. Both actors have rarely been better in the movies. The real Master class here is about acting – and that includes just about everybody else in the film, especially Adams, whose twinkly girl-next-door quality is used here to fine subversive effect.
  21. Photographic Memory is about the permanence and impermanence of what we choose to preserve: on film and in our heads (which is often the same thing). I would like to think that one day Adrian might look at this documentary and see it as a supreme act of paternal love.
  22. Before Midnight is the fullest and richest and saddest of the three movies in the trilogy. Make it a quartet, I say.
  23. I have rarely seen a movie that better expressed the revivifying nature of music. (Many of the women, not surprisingly, grew up singing gospel in church choirs and had preachers for parents.)
  24. The fierce, questing intelligence of these students and educators is a perfect match for Wiseman’s own.
  25. Her
    The wistfulness in this movie is large-souled. Theodore may worry that his love for Samantha makes him a freak, but Amy knows that “anybody who loves is a freak.” All this may sound touchy-feely in the worst way, but Jonze is trying to get at how we seek romantic connection in this brave (or not so brave) new world. Like Theodore, he risks looking foolish.
  26. There is no need for Murmelstein to break down here. In The Last of the Unjust, it’s as if the whole world is weeping.
  27. A lousy title for a marvelous movie.
  28. The enchanting French-Belgian animated feature Ernest & Celestine is so liltingly sweet and graceful that, a day or two after I saw it, it seemed almost as if I had dreamed it.
  29. Maier is a great artist who discounted adulation entirely. Her life was a masquerade; her genius, quite literally, was unexposed.
  30. It’s the ultimate time-travel movie into the future, a “flowing time sculpture,” in Linklater’s own words.

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