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 6.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 55
Highest review score: 100 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
Lowest review score: 0 3000 Miles to Graceland
Score distribution:
3,655 movie reviews
  1. Simply put, it represents the work of a filmmaker so exhilaratingly in command of his craft that he can, among other things, turn a single image of two people standing next to each other -- fully clothed, their bodies not quite touching -- into one of the most sublimely erotic moments we have ever beheld on the screen.
  2. It's not a happy film, but there's much incidental, quotidian happiness in it. Like Lynne Ramsay's lovely "Ratcatcher," the movie is far from sentimental about children.
  3. Makes no attempt to entertain us. Much of this extraordinarily tactful movie, like "Rosetta," is shot in close-up, focusing on the back of Olivier's neck, as if inviting us to see the world as he does.
  4. DiCaprio harnesses a terrific, buggy intensity reminiscent of "GoodFellas'" hopped-up Henry Hill (Ray Liotta).
  5. Surprises you with a kind of hardheaded romanticism.
  6. Faster and, if possible, furiouser than its predecessors.
  7. (Linney and Ruffalo) are just beautiful enough, in fact, to be in the movies and still remain convincing as authentic folk, and their performances are tremendously moving.
  8. Polanski, wisely, doesn't interpret or explain. He seems to have decided that in the face of such meticulously planned horror, the best one can do is get the details right.
  9. Not only relates the astounding story of the expedition and its unimaginable hardships, it presents a thoughtful study of a time when there were adventurers who might actually respond to an advertisement reading "Men wanted for hazardous journey. Low wages, bitter cold . . ."
  10. It is undeniable in its poignancy, an ecstatic vision of what might have been, though as much for its story as for the fact that the whole thing dissolves like a paper fan in rain, an evanescent masterwork.
  11. Line for line, Knocked Up isn't quite as funny as "The 40-Year-Old Virgin," which got most of its laughs from the friction between prissy Carell and his sex-crazed stoner co-workers. But it is equally good as a nutty anthropology of marginal living and as an illustration of how much energy it takes to do nothing in a work-obsessed society.
  12. Ghobadi's genius seems supercharged rather than weighed down by his higher calling, and his imagery is so boilingly alive that we come away from it feeling exhilarated rather than depressed.
  13. The film unfolds at a deliberate pace, with a soundtrack occupied less by dialogue than by the sounds of water flowing and crickets chirping. And if you listen carefully enough, you might just hear the sound of one hand clapping.
  14. To watch Joplin, Rick Danko, Jerry Garcia and Mickey Hart, all massively wasted, giggling and jamming, is a delight tempered by the knowledge that Joplin would be dead just months later, with the rest but one following after.
  15. At a time when most American movies, studio made or "independent," seem ever more divorced from anything approximating actual life experience, Half Nelson is so sobering and searingly truthful that watching it feels like being tossed from a calm beach into a raging current.
  16. This is classical activist filmmaking of the first order, a movie with the power to turn hearts, change minds and, just maybe, right the wayward course of an entire city.
  17. The bleakness and poignancy are inescapable in About Schmidt, a character study that has the emotional richness of the great Italian and Eastern European films of the 1960s, in which humor and pathos rode up and down on the seesaw together.
  18. Jonathan Demme's superb film of Neil Young's 2005 performance at Nashville's Ryman Auditorium is as fervent a musical homage as was Demme's bubbly tribute to the Talking Heads, Stop Making Sense (1984).
  19. Mitchell retools his play magnificently, opening it up into a vibrant cinematic work.
  20. For Denis’ film - which may be her most intricately constructed and intensely beautiful to date - is one that transcends words and stories, a movie to be felt rather than rationalized.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The movie's a rave and a half.
  21. One of the best films of the year thus far.
  22. The Host is a miracle of breathless play with form and tone that also seethes with attitude and ideas, from pure movie love to pointed sociopolitical commentary to a bleak existentialism about the inherent cruelty of our world.
  23. Grisbi is hard (new subtitles bring out the chill of the gangsters' argot) and gray: a meditation on what we are left with when life has let us down, played out in the haunted eyes of Jean Gabin.
  24. This isn't a profound film, or even an important one, but then it isn't trying to be. It's so diverting and so full of small satisfying pleasures, you don't realize how good it is until it's over.
  25. Speaks so eloquently for itself, there's not much more for me to do than urge you to get over to the Nuart for the one week it's playing in Los Angeles.
  26. Frances Reid and Deborah Hoffman's heart-stopping, Oscar-nominated documentary about the Truth and Reconciliation Commission is narrow in focus, but broad in its reach for insight into the power of public drama.
  27. A triumph of invisible craftsmanship that embraces so much specific detail that none of the women ever comes across as an emblem or an abstraction.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Perfectly situated in the maelstrom of the personal and the political, Sound and Fury creates a space for serious, obstinate contention.
  28. The kind of small film -- morally ambiguous, graceful in its admission of imperfect knowledge, at once specific and universal -- that expands our understanding of the emotional economy of family life, with its ebb and flow of love and hostility, secrecy and egregious candor. You must see this film.

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