Los Angeles Times' Scores

For 8,327 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 58% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 38% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 0.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 61
Highest review score: 100 The Tale of The Princess Kaguya
Lowest review score: 0 Being Human
Score distribution:
8,327 movie reviews
  1. 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.
  2. The film is rescued from its own lumbering self-seriousness by Weber's sensitive portrayal of teen dynamics, but it's never as scary or as creepy as it needs to be.
  3. Old-fashioned in the worst sense, Bardwell's ghost story is heavy on Freud, light on fear.
  4. A technical amazement that points computer-generated animation toward the brightest of futures, it's also cartoonish in the worst way, the prisoner of pedestrian plot points and childish, too-cute dialogue.
    • Los Angeles Times
    • 33 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    My Brother is brimming with would-be life lessons. But the movie goes in so many directions, and follows through on so few of them, that all it transmits is a vague glow. It's watered-down chicken soup for the soul.
  5. Though the actors' chemistry sets off no fireworks and the story is never truly involving, the movie does manage to avoid being outright painful.
  6. Even by the non-Olympian standards of the disaster genre, San Andreas is chock-full of cliché characters, staggering coincidences and wild improbabilities.
  7. Try as they might, Nicole and Milo, as they are called in the movie, don't steam. Wispy vapors is about as good as it gets.
  8. Stay Alive spends a lot of time inside the video game system, and what will terrify the audience very early on is the realization that there's better acting in the video game than on the big screen.
  9. Cage's loop-di-loop performance, the movie's surviving asset, at least hints at the themes of institutional illness and mortal decline that must have fascinated Schrader.
  10. The go-for-broke plot twists are daring, but because there's no sense of background to the characters, one gets the sense it's all being made up as Baigelman goes along.
  11. There is an interesting kernel of a story about beauty, betrayal and brutality inside each of the film's scenarios and a cast that could handle anything thrown at it. But the kernel never pops, and all we're really left with is a whole lot of neo-noir corn.
  12. As over-the-top operatic and inexplicable as Dawn Patrol can be, producer and star Eastwood remains captivating and charismatic, ultimately serving as a grounding element within the swirl of emotional drama and almost saving the film from going overboard.
  13. A flimsy episodic feature.
  14. You'll be goaded throughout The Comebacks to think of "Bend It Like Beckham," "Remember the Titans," "Rudy," "Hoosiers," "Field of Dreams" and their ilk. What you also think about is how much this stuff worked better in "Airplane!" or "Blazing Saddles."
  15. Overall, Charlie Wilson's War is glib rather than witty, one of those films that comes off as being more pleased with itself than it has a right to be. It also suffers from being not all of a piece, with mismatched elements struggling to cohere.
  16. There's nothing wrong with remakes, but as this movie amply proves, there's often nothing right about them, either
  17. Only half as clever as it thinks and even less entertaining.
  18. Like Malkovich's out of control Russian accent, Rounders ends up reaching a place too hard to understand and even harder to believe in.
  19. Thinking too much about the contents will ruin what little pleasure there is in the experience.
  20. For all the time we spend watching Justin and Nicole negotiate their needs, we have no idea who these people are.
  21. It's neither very original nor very convincing. "Shakespeare in Love" did something similar by casting its writer protagonist as the hero of a story he himself might have written, but Becoming Jane lacks that movie's wit and playfulness.
  22. We have a fumbling and fawning - if sincere - tribute to the living legend and a director who has never seemed more out of his element.
  23. Redford and Carnahan would like us to ponder our role in their fate. And maybe we would, if the lecture weren't so dull and self-satisfied.
  24. Romance and capers exist in Lay the Favorite, they just aren't played well.
  25. Rather than the engaging enlightenment of the source, the film becomes bloated by confusion.
  26. Black comedy becomes funnier as the action becomes darker and more perilous, but The Hunting Party fails to locate the absurdity in the central situations and goes for midget jokes instead. In the end, you're not sure if you're supposed to be watching "The Three Amigos" or "Hotel Rwanda."
  27. Some of the language is smart, sinister and ironic in just the right ways, particularly when Addison, Eric Bana's serial-killing mastermind, delivers it. In other cases, the dialogue is so ludicrously off - either unnecessary, or unnecessarily misogynistic if a cop is doing the talking - that it's hard to believe the same person wrote it.
  28. Pawn's cops and robbers game could have been far better played.
  29. Director Tony Vitale, best know for "Kiss Me Guido," gamely tries to keep pace with Cupo's erratic storytelling and struggles to convey the inner life of Cupo's character.
  30. Weakly developed characters, a lack of substantive tension and an ending that's more startling than sound round out the minuses of this earnestly motivated but undercooked morality tale.
  31. The story and characterizations never get much deeper than "We're all special in our own way."
  32. 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
  33. Trashily in-your-face thriller, which leans heavily for its effects on intense sympathy pain, improbable reversals and the mystifying star appeal of Jessica Alba.
  34. It's a strange feeling to see the summer's most promising premise self-destruct into something bizarre and unsatisfying, but that is the Hancock experience.
  35. The big question here is why any of The Voices, as crisply made and stylish as it is, should matter or entertain. The cold truth is that it doesn't.
  36. It buzzes along for a while, the promising plot innovations inviting suspension of disbelief, before by-the-numbers implausibility, over-the-top valor and unsavory contrivances take over and the line goes dead.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Atmosphere is about all Cracks has going for it. Although it's nominally set between the wars, the movie feels rootless and adrift, less a fable than a story only half told.
  37. Unfortunately, writer-director Josh Shelov's sendup of the Manhattan private school culture flies off its comic rails after an engaging start, never to land back on solid ground.
  38. The melodrama of the Maugham original is too simplistic to involve, and the places the film's plot goes are so obvious that even the presence of quality actors can't create sufficient interest.
  39. 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.
  40. All told, this is going to make passable television. Eventually.
  41. A shaggy dog tale in more ways than one, the campy comedy Wasabi Tuna is the kind of film that can give dumb blonds a bad name.
  42. The film takes a long time to get going because of all the prolonged, glib chit-chat that loses whatever satirical edge it might have initially possessed.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The misfortune, of Michael Stürminger's low-boil melodrama is that it's entirely too familiar. Underneath the movie's cool surface beats the heart of a 1940s tear-jerker. It's a subzero "Stella Dallas."
  43. Driven by different agendas, history and movies often tell two irreconcilable stories, which is why, despite some glints of talent, Hancock has given us yet another film and another Alamo to forget.
  44. It's difficult to get into its "What would I do?" vibe, though, through so thick and transparent a barrier of contrivances.
  45. Relentlessly smarmy and contrived, and its pitch for the cause of prisoner rehabilitation preachy and heavy-handed.
  46. The campier aspects of the film are not enough to make up for its lapses into melodrama and just plain silliness.
  47. In essence, you get "It's a Wonderful Life" meets "Wings of Desire," swapping out the substance for self-help platitudes. If you can get past that, you can enjoy it as a 90-minute look at a lovely postcard.
  48. Trapped in a no man's land between seriousness and pulp trash, it plays like a combination of "Death Wish" and "The Hours." If that sounds like an awkward fit, it is.
  49. Parents and older siblings...may grow impatient with the uneven execution that weakens the genuine charm the film sporadically exhibits.
  50. Synthetic, strained and noisy, Yours, Mine & Ours is a clinker that doesn't bear comparison with the original. Quaid, Russo and others deserve better.
  51. A hopelessly muddled example of inspirational indie cinema.
  52. By ambitiously aiming to encompass the full scope and complexity of the social pandemic, Lost and Love winds up being all over the map.
  53. Overlong, overwritten.
  54. Allen's view of what's "deeply real" feels ever more deeply bogus as the movie progresses, his trademark wit having calcified into pastiche and unintended self-parody.
  55. Something we want to like more than we can. It's a mild family film with an excellent cast that never develops traction.
  56. A provocation, a coup de théâtre and three hours of tedious experimentation.
  57. Well-meaning and convinced it has something of value to say, its "Reach Out and Touch Someone" sensibility ensures that all its satisfactions will prove hollow, and so they do.
  58. Like the floundering filmmaker at its center, The Face of an Angel never seems sure of what story it wants to tell.
  59. Despite a finely wrought lead performance by Dakota Fanning, the drama feels more like the stuff of a mild — and dated — YA novel than an involving exploration of female experience.
  60. It's a snooze.
  61. With little room to feel for or even understand Anna Maria, Paradise: Faith rarely seems more than high art with low intentions.
  62. The film works hard at its inoffensiveness. Throughout, jokes are left on the table, setups never pay off in any significant way.
  63. Writer-director Joe Eddy's debut is sincere but relies on obvious tropes.
  64. Unexpectedly flatfooted when it should be light on its toes, Legend of The Fist fails to pack much of a punch.
  65. From the beginning to its very end, The Benchwarmers seems to be struggling to justify its own existence.
  66. Being big on improvisation doesn't necessarily mine nuggets of comic brilliance, and there are times you wish Argott and Joyce would have adhered more closely to the Matt Serword-penned script.
  67. The film is only slightly more boorish than the racy cult hit was on telly and would probably not be worth the celluloid expended were it not for the bookish, brainy Will McKenzie (Simon Bird).
  68. There's a strange sort of diffidence that seems to inhabit Dafoe and Roberts' performances, and the disconnect between the two Janes is simply insurmountable.
  69. The leads can't lend either spunk or gravitas to what was already a preposterous yarn 50 years ago.
  70. A romantic drama with some good qualities -- among them earnestness and strong performances -- but not enough to completely overcome the strain of its clichés.
  71. Amiable and upbeat though it is, the documentary Hollywood to Dollywood lacks a compelling reason to see it. Unless you are a Dolly Parton zealot, which its two protagonists definitely are.
  72. It isn't that nothing happens in Poolhall Junkies, it's that nothing interesting does.
  73. Transformers' multiple earthling story lines are tedious and oddly lifeless, doing little besides marking time until those big toys fill the screen.
  74. The Attorney is on the side of justice, but it's a ham-fisted dramatization of real-life events that mistakes anger for persuasion.
  75. The story is too silly, too woefully underwritten, to stake a claim on seriousness.
  76. Like a lot of other Asian sci-fi anime: a stunningly imagined world of the future populated with one-dimensional characters caught up in a trite plot.
  77. The film doesn't have nearly the bite - ferocious or delicious - that any self-respecting vampire movie really should. It's as if all the life has drained away.
  78. The first "Ghost Rider" film, directed by Mark Steven Johnson, was sort of a fizzy goof, the kind of movie where you don't expect much and then think, "Hey, that was actually kind of fun." Spirit of Vengeance, though, is undone by increased expectations, as promising more only makes it feel they are somehow delivering less.
  79. Unbalanced storytelling aside, Ozeki wisely works to keep the film focused on his actors.
  80. The movie never rises above a style-over-substance exercise.
  81. More entrails, more bare bosoms, more R-rated sex, more flatulence, more mayhem, more brutality and more violence. But it adds up to less and less.
  82. There's a great story at the heart of Matej Minac's documentary Nicky's Family, if only it were allowed to be told unvarnished.
  83. The film feels overstuffed and overcooked, as if the filmmaker were trying to get too much out all in one go.
  84. Unnecessary and silly.
    • Los Angeles Times
  85. Not a remake -- it just feels like one.
  86. In its portrait of a Restless City the film is strangely inert and feels like the work of image-makers, not storytellers.
  87. The film is haphazardly structured, undercutting its potential power.
  88. Unfortunately, there's a lack of structure, context and point of view to the largely gray, grim, hardscrabble world presented here.
  89. Writer-director M. Blash's sophomore film is ethereal and trippy, told less in scenes than in oblique snatches, not unlike the experience of emotional paralysis. This approach grows wearying.
  90. Aside from a couple of rescue set pieces that bookend it, the film is strictly low-wattage in terms of action.
  91. Almost from the beginning the message overwhelms the medium.
  92. The hour of mike time isn't as strong as such previous dispatches as "Seriously…Funny."
  93. This fourth "Spy Kids" picture isn't so much bad as it is just boring, lacking the buzz and brio of even some of the earlier entries in the series. It feels like someone is now just marking time.
  94. Awkwardly balanced between comedy and significance, with plotting that gets increasingly schematic and unconvincing, My Old Lady is bound and determined to get more serious than it is capable of sustaining.
  95. For all the soaring visual splendor of its past, present and future, it's hobbled by a murky plot that proves to be not all that original once it starts unraveling.
  96. All the possibilities of a richly drawn family squabble fade faster than the final days of summer.
  97. Ultimately the documentary falls short of explaining why Vreeland not only made his choice but maintained it.

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