Los Angeles Times' Scores

For 7,763 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 59% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 38% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 0.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 The Deep Blue Sea
Lowest review score: 0 Empire Records
Score distribution:
7,763 movie reviews
  1. Drains the original story of its satire and juices up its shtick, schmaltz and special effects.
  2. It's not objectionable (which is saying something these days) but neither does it have any compelling reason to be seen.
  3. Revenge may be sweet, but this is one "Monte Cristo" that leaves a sour taste.
  4. It is a slack and preachy business that never comes to grips with its underlying theme of homophobia.
  5. Wasabi dawdles and drags when it should pop; it doesn't even have the virtue of enough mindless violence to break up the tedium of all its generational bonding.
  6. Director Michael Bay's filmmaking style is so frantic and frenetic that it's often impossible to figure out exactly what is happening.
    • 24 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    It contains, perhaps, one pinkie-toe bone of surprise in its skeleton of cliche.
  7. Not even a sincere and heroic effort by Nicolas Cage can redeem the film's essential phoniness.
  8. This premise is ripe with possibilities, but in an apparent -- and definitely misguided -- attempt to make his movie more commercial, Wilkinson has made the younger brother a murderer on the run.
  9. While clunky in pacing -- and in periodic attempts at humor -- Green Card Fever has been well-photographed by Scott Spears and makes some provocative points.
  10. Uptown Girls is more downer than upper.
  11. It isn't just that there's something unsettling about a film that aestheticizes a crematorium; it's that there's something trivializing about the very effort.
  12. Its dark-edged crime-caper plot is so formulaic it seems almost ritualized. Yet Ice Cube and Mike Epps enact their standard odd-couple tango with such ease and brio, you'd think they'd never seen such movies before.
  13. Promising as it seems in theory, everything in this new version, like Lena Lamont's image in "Singin' In the Rain," falls apart as soon as the talking starts.
  14. It isn't that nothing happens in Poolhall Junkies, it's that nothing interesting does.
  15. Feels like detention -- without the possibility of recess.
  16. Looks good but overstays its welcome.
  17. A reminder of the difference between exhilaration and exhaustion, between tension and hysteria, between eroticism and exhibitionism. The line may be fine, but it is real enough to separate the great thrillers from the also-rans. And Basic Instinct is not a great thriller.
  18. The genre's recent past has set the bar quite high, and Treasure Planet doesn't quite make it over.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Like the song, the movie is bouncy and catchy but disposable pop material.
  19. Not exactly terrible, merely stale and pointless.
  20. From its standard-issue action to its halfhearted dialogue and acting, that's one situation even two Schwarzeneggers aren't enough to solve.
  21. Charlotte Gray, for all Blanchett's radiance and intelligence in the title role, is a bore.
  22. As for Schneider, he may be obnoxious and unhandsome, but he is, more important, talented and fearless, the driving force of this brash, not-so-predictable comedy.
  23. It's a copy all the way, a disheartening attempt to capitalize on the success of the original.
  24. Features an aggressive, in-your-face romanticism that's noticeably lacking in genuine warmth. While its story of lonely misfits searching for love has appealing moments, more often it turns into an overbearing fable overburdened with fake joie de vivre.
  25. With The Rose Technique, producer-writer Ray Stroeber came up with a promising idea, but director Jon Scheide plays this pitch-dark comedy far too straight.
  26. The route to the film's dramatic and poignant climax is so hard to follow that the pleasure, the potential for which is considerable, has been substantially diminished.
  27. Moves with the suffocating deliberateness of a river of molasses.
  28. Long-winded and ultimately uninvolving.
  29. Carpenter's heart doesn't seem to be in this lackluster space adventure set in 2176. What's more, his stars -- Natasha Henstridge and Ice Cube -- don't exactly energize the proceedings.
  30. As has happened before in less extreme circumstances, filmmakers with purportedly serious intentions punish their viewers for watching their envelope-pushing depiction of sex on the screen by presenting it in the most profoundly negative context imaginable.
    • 29 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    It delivers the stars in unguarded moments that should give fans--if not everyone--some kicks.
  31. A bland romantic comedy that comes up short on both laughs and love.
  32. The result is exposition overkill and a dragged-out finale that turns what should have been a Tear Duct Special into a deflating experience, making what worked in the book unacceptable on the screen.
  33. Not so much a remake of a film as it is a remake of an overcooked performance--a case of ham imitating ham.
  34. The well-intended Group is nevertheless problematic. It's relentlessly grueling, as therapy can be, and not everyone will be able to see a reason to watch it.
  35. All told, this is going to make passable television. Eventually.
  36. A handsome, intelligent film of rigorous austerity; unfortunately, for all its seriousness of purpose and fine performances, it's also a boring film about boring people.
  37. In all his athletic scenes, leaping through doors, leaping between uptown and downtown trains, leaping on an assortment of villains, Swayze is just fine. It's the movie's big cosmic questions that throw him; for these he's reduced to a look of total stupefaction--not the movie's finest moments. [13 July 1990, Calendar, p.F-1]
    • Los Angeles Times
  38. (Lipnicki) is pressed into the service of mugging and shtick that would test the mettle of Roberto Benigni.
  39. There's more than a little Oedipal melodrama tossed into the mix. But the movie rarely gets as sappy or as contrived as one keeps expecting.
  40. Style is content in action movies, but when all the style originates elsewhere, it's just plain lazy.
  41. This new romantic comedy from the U.K. lands on an emotional gold mine only to spin it into synthetic straw.
  42. It's hard to imagine anyone enjoying it except for those seeking to see people up there on the screen unhappier than themselves.
  43. Highly problematical. The trouble with "Trouble" is one of temperament. Denis' formality and seriousness make the horror genre a risky business for her, especially when sex is combined with outrageous gore.
  44. It's the most outwardly sleazy of all Lynch's movies, the rawest and raunchiest, the least circumspect. Full of striptease and scandal, violence, orgy and feverish nightmare, the movie is a kind of mass opening of the sewers that always lay beneath Twin Peaks' placid streets... But it does cap off a pop-cultural landmark, with all the bad taste and high style required. [31 Aug 1992]
    • Los Angeles Times
  45. LaBute can't avoid a fatal mistake in the modern era: He's changed the male academic from a lower-class Brit to an American, a choice that upsets the novel's exquisite balance and shreds the fabric of the film, corrupting all of LaBute's good work and robbing it of the impact it would otherwise have.
  46. Screenwriter Dan Schneider and director Shawn Levy substitute volume and primary colors for humor and bite. Granted, it's a kids' flick, but kids today have enough savvy about the movie industry to report for Variety.
  47. That bland, opaque quality is a disadvantage here; whatever else [Depp] is capable of, making audiences feel his pain is not at the top of the list.
  48. Mostly I Spy, with more dead spots than a Jerry Lewis telethon, is content to mark time. That gives us, and perhaps the cast as well, the opportunity to reflect on how satisfying this film could have been if anyone had thought it worth their while to provide real material for the talent to work with.
  49. Has its moments here and there, but not nearly enough of them to add up to a satisfying movie.
  50. Solondz's filmmaking style tries to make a virtue out of flatness and distance, and is always more comfortable indicating where feelings would go than actually providing them.
  51. The result is crass but reasonably harmless, although to hear one of the guys hold forth on how much he's learned about family and loyalty in just one week living with the DOGs is enough to make a person gag.
  52. Proyas is trying simultaneously to create a pure thriller and sci-fi nightmare along with his tongue-in-cheek critique of artifice. And this doesn't work out quite so well.
  53. Jackpot has much that is sweet and funny, but it is not overly original--and it is overly long and not as coherent as it might be.
  54. Has the makings of that rarest of ventures, an adaptation that is true to the spirit of the original as well as its own time and place. But as Payback wends its way toward its conclusion, its promise dissipates and its pleasures wane.
  55. It's a drag how Nettelbeck sees working women -- or at least this working woman -- for whom she shows little understanding; there's a puritan, even punitive, cast to the way she sees her character, whose pathology she digs at with the tenacity of a truffle hound.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Complacent yet competent animation kids will enjoy despite its mundane nature.
  56. The South takes another beating in Sweet Home Alabama, but that's nothing compared with the one conferred on the sweetheart personality of its pint-sized Gen. Sherman.
  57. It's not a bad idea, and it has the right cast and the right look. But, sad to say, it lacks the pace and energy to make it come alive and therefore remains more of a literary conceit than a movie.
  58. A fantasy, a fairy tale, but its characters and the emotions they elicit become painfully real.
  59. Controlled Chaos unfortunately also reveals that Zendel's talents do not equal her ambitions.
  60. Harlin's skill compensates for a lot of narrative preposterousness, even it is overmatched this time around.
  61. No one comes out of Hollywood Homicide looking good, but the film fades fast.
  62. It's an overly familiar setup played out by overly familiar types but, curiously, what invests XX/XY with its tension is that there's no sense that Austin Chick, the film's capable young director and writer, knows what he feels about any of this.
  63. Certainly sexy, entertaining and provocative -- in several senses of the word -- but it's also tiresome as only a French film can be when everyone in it has only sex and amour on his or her mind and is deadly serious about both.
  64. Manages to capture enough honest moments to make it watchable, but it's never really funny enough to recommend to anyone who's outgrown short pants and kneepads.
  65. The film has been hailed as something of a literary thriller; it's not. The stultifying pace and Moskowitz's filmmaking laziness are forgivable, but it's exasperating and indicative of our low expectations for the documentary form that a film that taps the likes of Leslie Fiedler could be so devoid of ideas. Reading is fundamental; so is thinking.
  66. Despite strong portrayals by Guttenberg and his co-star, Lombardo Boyar, and sequences that attempt to open the play up, it remains too much a filmed play, and worse, one that has not been effectively paced. As a result, it doesn't come alive until it's drawing to a close that's unexpectedly touching, if more than a little sentimental, but too late to redeem the preceding tedium.
  67. Reitman's attempt to show he can re-create the success of his biggest comedy ever. What he proves instead is that, given time and money, a comedy director can devolve into a lower life form.
  68. If The Mexican proves anything, it's that eccentric features need a particularly delicate touch to be successful. With a film like this, how close you come doesn't matter: Off by a little is as debilitating as off by a lot.
  69. Gallops along at a quick, easygoing clip. Grown-ups may have to scrub the sugar from their frontal lobes. But it's not about them, is it? Never was. Never will be.
  70. The result is hit or miss, with a laugh here and there, ultimately creating an aura of hopeless and drawn-out improbability.
  71. What's wrong with Megiddo is not its good-versus-evil theme but the clunky, unpersuasive manner in which it has been expressed.
  72. Does go on too long, leading to inevitable dead spots.
  73. Frankly, the film's real surprise is that it doesn't collapse under the weight of its sanctimonious posturing and howling pretension. The film is crammed with high-cultural references and people playing "smart," but none of it adds up.
  74. All-out burlesque rather than spoof from the outset, the film becomes less and less amusing. Wayans has a wild zaniness that can be hilarious, but how many bodily function jokes, ultra-crude sexual innuendoes and quite a lot of men and women simply punching each other out can one movie endure?
  75. Not as much fun as it should be. Few of its numerous actors make a lasting impression and Burton's heart and soul is not in the humor but (remember the "Batman Returns" backlash) in deadpan postmodern horrors, of which this film has a few.
  76. Its twisty film noir world of down-on-their-luck men and unfathomable women is vintage B-picture material, but, in the grand B tradition, the games it plays are more ambitious than successful.
  77. Maxwell has populated his film with paragons rather than people. Worse, they talk and talk and talk; this film is in danger of talking itself to death before the Union and the Confederacy are able to decimate each other.
  78. The endless gore and violence make the experience torturous -- and not just for the victims in the movie.
  79. Scorsese and his team have created a heavy-footed golem of a motion picture, hard to ignore as it throws its weight around but fatally lacking in anything resembling soul.
  80. These guys have dumbed down a comic book.
  81. A movie that desperately wants her (Latifah's) hip, her edge and mostly her blackness but doesn't know what to do with the human being who comes with the package.
  82. Noé, with his Nietzsche-for-knuckleheads nihilism and extreme-cinema ambitions, clearly fancies himself a visionary, but mounting a camera on a roller coaster or putting a story into rewind doesn't make a film formally adventurous or interesting. Conceiving of a gay club as an antechamber to the inferno and sexualizing a woman's rape, however, do make it titillating.
  83. Youthful audiences won't be attracted to a love story between two 54-year-olds in the first place, and mature audiences will be turned off by the language, not necessarily out of prudishness, but out of its sheer crassness.
  84. A concept, no matter how promising, is not a movie, and this picture has the bad luck to illustrate the difference.
  85. The problem rather is the wholesale embracing of what has become de rigueur in animation, the practice of treating major characters as if they were stand-up comics working a room in Las Vegas.
  86. Without question, the whole thing's absurd -- this is, remember, about a guy stuck in a phone booth -- but for its first 40 minutes or so it's also mildly entertaining, fueled by the nuttiness of the setup and Schumacher's energy.
  87. The whole trippy experience is like being held at gunpoint by a Jehovah's Witness at the front door while George Gobel holds forth in the living room on Nickelodeon.
  88. Depp's performance reminds us that, yeah, it's only a movie -- just not a good one.
  89. Evokes the fear, anger and conflict that swept over the country at the time, but it doesn't offer sufficient fresh insights to justify doing so.
  90. Something we want to like more than we can. It's a mild family film with an excellent cast that never develops traction.
  91. Rich in authentic locales but is unevenly directed by Andrew Molina and is hazy in its chronology. Hayata's story in all its myriad implications might well have been better told in documentary form.
  92. Limp spoof.
  93. The four actors are very good, and it's a shame they aren't working from a more focused and original concept. Written by Fusco and Michael Garrity, there's nothing awful about Stealing Time except that it mixes familiar ingredients with pretty bland results.
  94. This is the latest addition to a new type of drug movie -- one that exploits addiction for a lot of self-adoring showboating.
  95. There's scarcely a whiff of originality in the zombie horror picture House of the Dead, but Uwe Boll has directed it with enough energy and style that it adds up to passably mindless if grisly fun.
  96. There's nothing wrong with remakes, but as this movie amply proves, there's often nothing right about them, either

Top Trailers