L.A. Weekly's Scores

For 3,655 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 51% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 6.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 55
Highest review score: 100 There Will Be Blood
Lowest review score: 0 Here on Earth
Score distribution:
3655 movie reviews
  1. What comes off as clever at first quickly wears out -- even the sudden cutaways to spectacular surf footage can't save this wipeout.
  2. Cage's avenger is named Milton; this reference to the author of Paradise Lost is the sole hint that Old World culture ever existed in Drive Angry's convoy of hyperbolized-unto-parody Americana: bad drawls, obese gawkers, roadhouse demonology, coochie-cutter shorts, and engines revving under guitar stomp.
  3. If the teen in your life drags you along to this movie, act like you're doing him a favor -- and try not to let on that you sort of liked it.
  4. Its tone is as disjointed as if this were a first effort.
  5. At times, both swans and humans appear oddly out of sync with their flat backgrounds, while the film's few musical flights of fancy never achieve visual liftoff.
    • 17 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Still, it’s hard to despise the movie, especially when Peter Stormare shows up over-enunciating the most brilliantly awful English accent of all time.
  6. Like a lot of recent queer-themed cinema that aspires to be politically charged, Maple Palm takes a hot-button issue (here, it's homophobic U.S. immigration policies) and reduces it to dry sloganeering and shameless emotional manipulation of the audience.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Writer-director Caroline Roboh's moralistic paean to Jewish self-knowledge is so solemnly high-minded that one almost feels bad admitting that the film's only spark comes from its occasional tawdry ludicrousness.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    There's no excitement or terror in watching the 3-D execution of 2-D actors giving 1-D performances, just the steadily diminishing returns of the same eye gouge delivered ad infinitum.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    As a director, newcomer Frank E. Flowers shows a flair for visuals and characters, but as a writer, he needs work. The Tarantinoesque nonlinear structure he employs would be risky even in Quentin's hands, and is downright self-sabotaging here.
  7. Lame comic-strip excuse for a biopic.
  8. Baffling too is The Rock's choice to follow up his acclaimed performance in "Be Cool" with a role that requires him to do little more than widen his eyes and grunt lines.
  9. The one saving grace is a sweet, affecting performance by Werner de Smedt.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Rather than simply releasing the uncomfortably amusing clips on DVD as a "Jackass"-style compilation, executive producer Vin Di Bona and Gold Circle Films president Paul Brooks have spliced them into the umpteenth unfunny cinematic variation of the "sensitive guy and obnoxious womanizing best friend try to get laid" story, with nary a laugh to be had unless you're one of those who finds toilet scenes and prison-rape jokes to be automatically hilarious.
  10. Singleton has neither the emotional nor intellectual depth to do justice to his thesis. He is too in awe of the stereotypical hood lifestyles and macho posturings that he's trying to critique.
  11. Notable actors such as Thandie Newton, Judi Dench, Keith David and Colm Feore are little more than stiff-necked toy figures jostled around to accommodate Twohy's Wagnerian spacescapes, crappy dialogue and CGI-dependent action.
  12. It's a mean-spirited exercise in stilted outrageousness.
  13. Quickly reveals itself to be a hyper-stylized flick (lots of odd angles and studied production design in the service of flashbacks and dream sequences), but the glossy sum effect is that of a film student straining for a weightiness he can't pull off.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Cerda's striking creep-show atmospherics, desaturated palette and off-kilter editing rhythms are a style in search of a movie: The muddled "Twilight Zone" payoff here is hardly enough to justify a sluggish two-character round-robin of "Don't look in the basement!" The last thing a filmmaker named Nacho needs is more cheese.
  14. Is there a Razzie Award for worst casting? If so, it’s one of several that can be reserved early for this fourth, spectacularly lousy screen version of Jack Finney’s 1954 novella "The Body Snatchers," which some bright light envisioned as the ideal starring vehicle for the Cold Mountain herself, Nicole Kidman, and for Daniel Craig, last seen as the most poker-faced James Bond on record.
  15. The movie’s cumulative idea is that, forgetting the delusions of midlife panic, this is all there is, you’re already living the best possible life -- a message of sedentary wisdom betrayed when the actual film is as undeniably dreary as a plate of gummy Chicken Parmesan Tanglers.
  16. The tediously convoluted plot involves the foursome’s attempt to pay him back, a labored venture that involves crooks with names like Dog and Plank, a man on fire, some fine cinematography, plenty of gore though no real point.
  17. Why the devotion to such dull material?
  18. Branagh has cut, pasted and aggressively abridged Love's Labour's Lost, and piled it high with fancy visuals to make sure we get the drift.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    Amounts to an assault of jarring music cues and peek-a-boo scares that starts off mechanical and ends up utterly desperate.
  19. By the time a not terribly surprising tragedy hits and these crazy kids get theirs, the movie doesn't so much end as finally keel over.
    • 34 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    When you don't find yourself wondering about dialogue that's drowned out by rushing rivers and footfalls in the brush, something is very wrong.
    • 8 Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    With stronger actors and real writers, this might’ve been a vintage comedy you could sink your...nope, not going there.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 30 Critic Score
    This spineless feel-good nonsense means to warm the cockles of your heart. Somebody check the oven: My cockles were charred.
  20. Black Snake Moan is, at its core, a fairly straightforward variation on George Bernard Shaw -- "Pigsfeetmalion," if you will. One day, when he outgrows his terminal adolescence, Brewer might be the perfect filmmaker to tackle Faulkner or Tennessee Williams.

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