L.A. Weekly's Scores

For 3,656 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 6.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 55
Highest review score: 100 I'm Going Home
Lowest review score: 0 Lolita
Score distribution:
3,656 movie reviews
  1. We never seem to be looking at actors, but at people; never at scenes, but at life unrehearsed.
  2. It's a cheerfully deranged stunt, executed in a spirit of infectious lunacy that powers the resulting film to its strongest laughs, and weirdest depths.
  3. What ultimately makes Before Sunset so special (and maybe the most resonant, least self-conscious “great movie romance” of its era) is its deep-rooted honesty -- the way it takes the bitter with the sweet and somehow leaves us feeling elated.
  4. The Incredibles creates so seamless a mood of exhilaration that we resent being pulled out of it.
  5. Crowe has made a hugely entertaining, nearly pitch-perfect film about rock & roll.
  6. It’s our great good fortune, and Pekar's, that this movie -- which won the Grand Jury Prize at this year's Sundance Film Festival, followed by the FIPRESCI Award at Cannes -- is as true to the dyspeptic spirit of its source as anyone could have imagined.
  7. At his best, Altman turns us into interlopers who have stumbled into a world that seems to predate us and persuades us it will continue to teem with life long after we leave the theater.
  8. It is the highest compliment I can pay Greengrass to say that he is a master of the mundane, the routine and the everyday.
  9. Carrey is a genius at registering the rage behind television's sunny smile, while Laura Linney excels as his wife.
  10. Above all else, though, Capturing the Friedmans is a vividly personal, devastating story of a family that was hopelessly compromised years before it was scapegoated for crimes that two of its members may or may not have committed.
  11. Fraught with a deep sadness and sense of yearning. Yet, it is also an enormously -- at times, even uproariously -- comedic film, not because it feels any obligation to be "funny" in some contrived, screenwriterly sort of way, but because Coppola has set out to make a movie set to the rhythms of real (rather than reel) life.
  12. And like all great family sagas, The Best of Youth, while tipping its hat to the painful confusion of living life forward, reels it backward to give it the thrilling significance of time and place.
  13. The Lives of Others wants us to see that the Stasi -- at least some of them -- were, like their Gestapo brethren, “just following orders." You can call that naive optimism on Donnersmarck's part, or historical revisionism of the sort duly lambasted by the current film version of Alan Bennett's "The History Boys." I, for one, tremble at the thought of what this young director does for an encore.
    • 89 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The film is artfully made, its occasional excesses of style moderated by the plain force of the content and the passion of the testimony.
  14. The most seamless piece of sensuous expressionism Zhang has created since "Ju Dou" (1990).
  15. The movie survives beautifully both as an elegant thriller and as a study of the twisted infantilism that shapes the fanatic heart.
  16. The gimmick is simple but devastatingly effective: Never once breaking character or acknowledging that he’s in on the joke, the Jew-fearing, grammatically challenged reporter ingratiates himself with his unsuspecting, average-American victims before uproariously turning the tables on them.
  17. So daring, well-made and tirelessly inventive that I kept asking myself, “Why isn't this even better? Why isn't it moving me?” One huge problem is the hero... he's played by 42-year-old Jim Carrey, whose still-bottomless need to be loved invariably smacks of desperation and self-pity.
  18. Why Capote liked the movie so much (or said he did) isn't entirely clear, for though it's a gripping piece of American Gothic, it's as thematically timid as it is formally flamboyant.
  19. Once feels handmade in the best sense, an impressionistic feast for the senses cobbled together from lovely grace notes and a warm palette of reds and yellows.
  20. To see the film in this meticulously restored and remixed version is like watching it for the first time, so clear is the sound, so vivid the sights.
  21. Zwigoff pulls off something in Ghost World that seems a minor miracle -- he creates someone with a complex inner life.
  22. The triumph of Capote is that it both grants and shares with him that twisted brew of obsessive identification and monstrous detachment that is the fertile burden of the artist.
  23. Easily the most brilliant of the genuflections bestowed on the American gangster movie by the French New Wave.
  24. One of the great movies about childhood innocence accidentally violated by adults...Reed, an often inconsistent filmmaker, handles the brutal mechanics of the plot superbly, with the marbled interiors of the embassy contrasting sharply with his almost neo-realist outdoor shots of postwar London.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    Falters precisely because there's not enough stumbling, and far too much striding gallantly forward.
  25. A delirious fable about every creature's need for espace.
  26. Up
    Up emerges as a gentle hymn to adventure of both the soaring, storybook variety and the smaller, less obvious kind -- the perilous, unpredictable and richly rewarding journey of ordinary, everyday life.
  27. No parent who's been roped into leading the troops to a matinee need fear being bored: gags are, Simpsons-like, conceived to tickle several generations at once.
  28. Unfolds with such leisurely, terrible beauty, it takes a while to realize that what we are witnessing is the children's long slide into beggary, exacerbated by the slow torture of faint hope.

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