indieWIRE's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 984 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 73% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 25% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 12.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 74
Highest review score: 100 The Red Turtle
Lowest review score: 0 Hillary's America: The Secret History of the Democratic Party
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 44 out of 984
984 movie reviews
  1. The Witch becomes a focused portrait of fixed rituals crumbling in the face of inexplicable forces, evoking the fear of change lurking in the shadows at every moment. Despite the setting, its scares are uniquely contemporary.
  2. Smart in spite of its irreverence, "Future Folk" is the weirdest, most enjoyable fusion of genres you'll see this year.
  3. A disorienting puzzle of a movie with many exhilarating pieces, Anomalisa nevertheless maintains a straightforward trajectory involving Michael's internal strife.
  4. The story transitions from a believable portrait of young culture junkies into a showcase of Matt's burgeoning rage so well that it practically implicates viewers in the process.
  5. Thru You Princess develops a fairy tale quality that calls into question the nature of its production. However, the air of manipulation throughout the story only helps to pronounce its themes.
  6. The tense, involving result confirms Sciamma's mastery over the coming-of-age drama, a genre too often reduced to its simplest ingredients.
  7. The first-time director's refreshingly credible portrait of a boho character with Middle Eastern origins rectifies the aforementioned canonical gap in a witty, naturalistic generational snapshot.
  8. Despite the unruly music at its center, the filmmaker has crafted a uniformly gentle ode to growing up.
  9. With a keen eye for the capacity of fine art to address a complex range of attitudes and experiences, Museum Hours effectively applies Cohen's existing strengths to a familiar scenario and rejuvenates it by delivering a powerfully contemplative look at the transformative ability of all art.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Shot like a dream, spoken like an elegy, it takes nonfiction where it seldom wants to go – away from the comforting embrace of fact and into a realm of expressionistic possibility.
  10. At every turn, the movie casts a haunting spell.
  11. With its persistent inventiveness and a lack of unearned sentimentality, the movie provides an antidote to a lot of lazily produced dramas about death, American or otherwise.
  12. Film Socialism is a weighty, intentionally cryptic product that's easy on the eyes and heavy on the mind.
  13. Mills fashions the set-up for an overwrought, thoroughly depressing character study into an oddly charming comedy. It's a midlife crisis gently portrayed with sympathy rather than grief.
  14. Weekend builds into a powerful encapsulation of an identity crisis over the course of three passionate days.
  15. Pull back from the moment-to-moment thrill of Inside Out and it gets very deep: The scenario implicitly questions standard definitions of free will by suggesting that we're all slaves to ghosts in the machine.
  16. Portraying a generation so energized by possibilities that it was bound to be let down, Eden offers a wise assessment of the interplay between fantasy and reality on the path to adulthood. The seductive rhythms are a perfect match for a movie that analyzes the unstoppable flow of life.
  17. '71
    '71 constantly thrills without sensationalizing its surprises. The war-is-hell ethos drives it forward, so that the movie retains its suspense in conjunction with its dour outlook.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The film offers no answer, instead choosing to examine the conundrum of a man who repeatedly washes his face when things get too overwhelming, right before heading back out to the streets.
  18. Nathan never condescends to Pug or his cohorts, instead smartly allowing their brazen maneuvers to run the show.
  19. A remarkable refashioning of the Holocaust drama that reignites the setting with extraordinary immediacy, Son of Saul is both terrifying to watch and too gripping in its moment-to-moment to look away.
  20. A labyrinthine descent into the grotesque extremes of a Disneyfied society, Escape From Tomorrow is surreal for many reasons and wholly original because of them. It's also a daring attempt to literally assail Disney World from the inside out.
  21. A less controlled and slapdash character piece than "In Bruge," McDonagh's new movie benefits greatly from a plethora of one-liners that toy with crime movie clichés in the unlikely context of writerly obsessions.
  22. Hyams delivers a remarkably satisfying action-thriller hybrid that constantly pushes ahead. It's one of the best action movies of the year simply because it keeps hitting the right beats.
  23. Her
    Certainly his most deeply felt achievement, Her is both distinctly Jonze-like and something altogether different, as if the filmmaker has gone through a software update not unlike his artificial character.
  24. Herzog naturally plays up the enigma at hand with epic grandeur, occasionally overdoing it but usually hitting the mark.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    "Absolutely Fabulous” captures the irreverent fun of the series using an appropriately absurd plot device and does not read like a tired excuse to put the characters back in a room together.
  25. More meditation than movie, Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life is bound to mystify, awe and exasperate in equal measures.
  26. With time, the filmmaker achieves a small miracle by stringing together the movie's concise segments into an emotional whole.
  27. More traditional in terms of atmosphere and plot, Drug War nevertheless features a tense, unstoppable momentum, a morally ambiguous protagonist and hugely involving action scenes.
  28. Incredibly heartfelt to a large degree because of its cast.
  29. Striking a complex tone of tragedy and uplift at the same time, Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter both celebrates the escapist power of personal fantasies and bears witness to their dangerous extremes. It's the rare case of a story that's inspirational and devastating at once.
  30. Although not exactly heartwarming, Amour has a more contained vision of human relationships than Haneke's previous films without sacrificing its bleak foundation. It's his most conventional movie about death -- and the most poignant.
  31. While it has many familiar ingredients — from the atmosphere to the ensemble of Anderson regulars in nearly every role — in its allegiance to Anderson's vision, everything about The Grand Budapest Hotel is a welcome dose of originality.
  32. It's incredibly uneventful and devastating all at once.
  33. Gandolfini deserves an Oscar for Enough Said not because it's the culmination of everything that came before it but rather because it goes in a completely different direction. And his least characteristic achievement is also one of his best.
  34. Suleiman's most poignant moments are largely wordless. Nothing feels more affecting than Suleiman's ubiquitous frozen stare. Although he never utters a sound, his silence speaks volumes about the inability to resolve the social ramifications of Middle Eastern strife.
  35. Nobody else could fit the role of a crestfallen rocker that Paul Dano embodies in director So Yong Kim's remarkable For Ellen.
  36. A comedy of remarriage buried in intellectual abstraction and cinephilic obsessions, Certified Copy wanders a bit but never loses focus, with the only certainty being that its gimmick is genuine.
  37. Moment to moment, Birdman manages to shift gears, its roaming camera revealing new surprises as it glides along. That degree of unpredictability provides it with the ultimate response to the sea of formulaic mediocrities at the center of its critique.
  38. Under the Shadow" smartly observes the emotions stirred up by a world defined by restrictions, and the terrifying possibility that they might be inescapable.
  39. Brilliantly combining archival material, voiceovers, contemporary interviews and a variety of hand-drawn animation, the movie deconstructs the process of self-mythologizing from the inside out.
  40. On the whole, by ceding control to his subject, Hawke makes a persuasive case for Bernstein's guru-like outlook on the value of finding personal gratification in art above all else.
  41. Filled with considerable dread and mystery, 10 Cloverfield Lane functions just fine as a standalone genre title. But as a spiritual sequel to the original, it builds out the so-called "Cloververse" far better than could be expected from even the most straightforward of tales.
  42. An ode to art for art's sake, Inside Llewyn Davis is the most innocent movie of the Coens' career, which in their case is a downright radical achievement.
  43. TransFatty Lives stands out less for its inherently emotional topic than the appealing personality at its center.
  44. Cutting between various chilling anecdotes of sinister late night visions and horrifying reenactments, The Nightmare manages a tricky balance of visceral fright and sincere investigation. It's a rare non-fiction achievement that earns the ability to freak you out.
  45. A delicately wrought ensemble piece with first-rate turns by Gillian Jacobs, Keegan-Michael Key, and Birbiglia himself, Don't Think Twice scrutinizes its playful setting and finds an ideal entry point for exploring creative desperation.
  46. While it doesn't always earn its heft, Winter Sleep is both subdued and rich in details, its plot growing slowly over a series of extensive conversations. It's a robust, challenging experience he's been building toward with his previous features, as well as an adventurous step above them.
  47. Even as The Keeping Room plays with formulaic ingredients, it manages to combine them into an eloquent portrait of gender, race and the constant march of time without overstating any of its potent themes.
  48. Bizarre and challenging when it's not outright goofy, Wiener-Dog never feels remotely compromised. Somehow hilarious and gloomy at the same time, it represents a big middle finger to anyone who wishes Solondz would lighten up.
  49. Representing lower-class violence taken to an extreme, the cannibalism cannot be contained by police work. The movie's gradual build to a thrilling, appropriately bloody climax intensifies this disconnect.
  50. As a sociological experiment, Five Star offers plenty of talking points, but its real triumph is that the cast delivers, yielding a story in which the heightened suspense emerges organically from a gritty foundation of realism.
  51. To Die Like a Man deserves your attention for showcasing a filmmaker with the capacity for bold narrative trickery that doesn't come at the expense of emotional investment.
  52. Directors Katie Graham and Andrew Matthews' directorial debut (from Matthews' screenplay) centers on a highly unlikable character who has alienated himself from social responsibility -- and forces you to sympathize with him against all odds.
  53. At times, Frances Ha strains from emphasizing the characters' snarkiness and disregarding plot. By routinely going nowhere, however, the movie eventually finds a distinctive voice that carries it through.
  54. A Bigger Splash has neither a clear center nor a clear moral, and it's all the better for it. This is a film about behavior, not plot — and how people are ruled by emotion, and not logic.
  55. Ignore the precise religious context and it stands perfectly well as a restrained look at personal convictions in the face of certain death.
  56. Kazan has fun with a silly premise and smartly plays it straight when the occasion calls for it, while keeping the cutesy, fantastical extremes of the material at bay. It's less fairy tale than shrewd exaggeration on the pratfalls of desire.
  57. Creed does justice to its roots while trying something new.
  58. Computer Chess excels at conveying the frustrations of feeling trapped by forces beyond one's control, the complexities of humanity irresolvable by any neat code.
  59. Dickinson's hauntingly naturalistic look at disgruntled young adults trapped in the country following an urban disaster plays like "Martha Marcy May Marlene" transported to a post-apocalyptic survival narrative -- with lots of yoga and sex.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Like its central character, Listen Up Philip exudes a kind of highbrow affectation that charms more than it alienates.
  60. In each tense moment, Miss Bala has a lot to say in a few words.
  61. Poitras, an expert filmmaker as keyed into pace and mood as the topic they support, delivers a mesmerizing look at both how Snowden managed to release his information as well as why it all matters.
  62. Love Is Strange is a sophisticated take on contemporary urbanity infused with romantic ideals and the tragedy of their dissolution.
  63. While not designed to entertain on the level of style and spectacle that one expects from a Bond film, this tense period drama from the director of "Man on Wire" presents a far more credible take on the daring exploits of British agents.
  64. Anchored by a sensational Charlotte Rampling as its lead, the movie combines Haigh's perceptive style with shades of Mike Leigh's "Another Year" to create a quietly moving and deceptively tragic look at aging romance haunted by past mysteries.
  65. Like "Afterschool," Durkin's first feature explores the dangerous extremes of youth vulnerability.
  66. The poetic rhythm with which Hartley brings three movies of events to an end is a tight, gripping expression of closure.
  67. Playing make believe with murderers, Oppenheimer risks the possibility of empowering them. However, by humanizing psychopathic behavior, The Act of Killing is unparalleled in its unsettling perspective on the dementias associated with dictatorial extremes.
  68. Swanberg once again shows a capacity for capturing small moments that exist outside the direction of the plot. At the same time, the effective fragments of "Drinking Buddies" take his oeuvre in a new direction by accumulating into a reworking big picture.
  69. There's no doubting that Holy Motors is an ungodly mess of images and moments, some more alluring than others, but it sure leaves a mark.
  70. Director Lenny Abrahamson seamlessly translates Donoghue's work into cinematic terms with his relentlessly compelling adaptation. However, the drama owes just as much to its two stars, Brie Larson and newcomer Jacob Tremblay, whose textured performances turn outrageous circumstances into a tense and surprisingly credible survival tale.
  71. Stillness dominates, from the first shots of cornfields at sunrise to the final one that finds Helmer lying among them. When "It's All So Quiet" comes full circle, the title is virtually an understatement.
  72. In the struggle to tell a story, Panahi reveals the redemptive power of art. No longer issuing desperate pleas, he has turned to cinema for the sake of survival.
  73. This is an idea familiar to anyone who has waded through Bigelow's universe of conspiratorial agendas in which no good deed goes unpunished, and might not be a good deed at all. Cartel Land plants that dilemma in our backyard, and ends with the tangible perception that it won't go away anytime soon.
  74. That the movie succeeds both as a high-stakes crime thriller as well as a far quieter and empathetic study of angry, solitary men proves that Cianfrance has a penchant for bold storytelling and an eye for performances to carry it through.
  75. One of the greatest comedy sequels ever made.
  76. Though at times almost too peculiar for its own good, The Lobster brings Lanthimos' distinct blend of morbid, deadpan humor and surrealism to a broader canvas without compromising his ability to deliver another thematically rich provocation.
  77. Exhibition infuses its cerebral exposition with a strong dose of humanity.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The Club is a bold and bracing allegory of a church tainted by scandals.
  78. If you can groove with Jarmusch's patient, philosophical indulgences and the wooden exteriors of his characters' lives, the movie rewards with a savvy emotional payoff about moving forward even when the motivation to do so has gone.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Whishaw's sensitive performance gives Lilting its emotional intensity.
  79. Despite the cerebral formalism that pushes it forward, Mond has made a genuine tearjerker.
  80. A viscerally charged movie that foregrounds surface tensions and gripping performances, Ginger and Rosa is the filmmaker's most accessible and technically surefooted work to date.
  81. I Wish embraces blissful ignorance, even celebrating its child characters' naivete.
  82. For American audiences, each gag has added appeal because it contains an uneasy humor that's often explored but never fully exploited in these parts.
  83. You couldn't ask for a more appropriate genre of music to carry a movie. As Didier explains the bluegrass appeal, "the banjo sort of snarls," bringing a primal form of energy that even he can't put into words. It's also the element that manages to rescue "Broken Circle" from the meandering nature of its structural looseness, which sometimes distracts from a thoroughly involving story.
  84. Unable to express the sorrow of Cory's passing or the larger sense of detachment from the world it represents, most of the people in Putty Hill try to remain disaffected. By pestering them with questions, Porterfield gets under their skin - and, in the process, ours as well.
  85. Mr. Turner is a first-rate match of director and subject. Less an explication of the man's genius than an immersion into its essence.
  86. Is the Man Who Is Tall Happy? bears the stamp of Gondry quirk but allows it to feel a lot more intimate than anything he's done since "Eternal Sunshine."
  87. Farhadi's new movie confirms his unique ability to explore how constant chatter and anguished outbursts obscure the capacity for honest communication.
  88. Simmien both mocks and provokes the nature of our seemingly progressive times by illuminating misguided assumptions and fears embedded in forward-thinking discourse. But Simien's relentless screenplay is never too self-serious or didactic, instead pairing culturally-savvy brains with a goofy grin.
  89. While Entertainment lacks the focused critique of "The Comedy," it nevertheless offers a fascinating look at the tension between personal aspirations and the harsh realities holding them back.
  90. Duplass' feisty energy is matched by DeWitt's constant smarminess, while Blunt's shy, fragile behavior balances off the forceful personalities surrounding her.
  91. With the shift from conventional rock doc into something more sophisticated, As the Palaces Burn remains enthralling all the way through.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Even after a superbly made two-hour-long documentary, Kuti keeps many of his secrets to himself.
    • 67 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    There's a dramatic cognitive dissonance at play, and Dolan takes for granted that the audience will be willing to suspend disbelief. That's where he missteps. In choosing not to build out Tom's psychological framework, Dolan risks alienating more than a few viewers.
  92. The contrast between the movie’s traditional execution and Stritch’s domineering powers create the lingering sense that she may be the project’s true auteur.

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