Los Angeles Times' Scores

For 7,376 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 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 The Age of Innocence
Lowest review score: 0 Running Scared
Score distribution:
7,376 movie reviews
  1. Hittman's debut isn't just a brilliantly tactile study of the mounting sexual curiosity and frustration of 14-year-old Lila (Gina Piersanti); it's also an important landmark in the oft-ignored subgenre of realistic movies about female adolescence.
  2. Watching this film feels like a genesis moment — of sci-fi fable, of filmmaking, of performance — with all the ambiguity and excitement that implies.
  3. Ilo Ilo is writer-director Anthony Chen's first film, but breathtaking intimacy in storytelling is already second nature to him.
  4. Ida
    Spare, haunting, uncompromising, Ida is a film of exceptional artistry whose emotions are as potent and persuasive as its images are indelibly beautiful.
  5. By focusing on the personal side of the city game, Hoop Dreams tells us more about what works and what doesn't in our society than the proverbial shelf of sociological studies. And it is thoroughly entertaining in the bargain.
  6. Moodysson captures that moment — charged, goofy and transcendent — when personal style and wide-ranging outrage fuse in an all-encompassing manifesto.
  7. Heli is a stunning piece of filmmaking. It's a hypnotic, starkly beautiful, often disturbing drama that puts a working-class Mexican family in the cross hairs of its country's drug war.
  8. An extraordinarily intimate portrait of a life unfolding and an exceptional, unconventional film.
  9. A film of warmth, insight, humor and surprising originality… [It] isn't perfect, but when it's good, which is every moment John Cusack is on screen, it's a living joy. And when it's not-so-good--earthbound and not inventive enough--it s till almost single-handedly redeems the breed. [14 April 1989]
  10. Moves way past the predictable into the shocking. Indeed, the film is so expertly structured and paced that its denouement knocks you off your feet.
  11. Offers a riveting depiction of the classic collision of fate and character, with geography in this instance playing a crucial role.
  12. There is a wonderful natural quality to Jeong's storytelling that is enhanced by cinematographer Young-hwan Choi's graceful camerawork and by a dynamic, contemporary score from M&F.
  13. Amazing, rich in authentic period atmosphere and detail, an ever-changing cyclorama of a movie.
  14. This modest film has virtues that come out of nowhere. It takes familiar material and develops it with such tact and skill that we find ourselves moved and sort of amazed at the same time.
  15. Disco's exceptional acting ensemble is especially successful at capturing the brittle rituals of this specific group of genteel, well-spoken young people on the cusp of adulthood.
  16. A drama of extraordinary power and insight with dazzling performances from not only Spacey but also Danny DeVito (who may well be at his best ever) and from newcomer Peter Facinelli.
  17. A compelling entertainment because of Hill and co-writer David Giler's adroit cinematic storytelling skills and the powerful presence of Wesley Snipes and Ving Rhames, whose talent and intelligence are as impressive as their physiques.
  18. Eerie, quietly compelling... a fresh and mesmerizing experience...such an unsettling experience you find yourself still taking it all in well after the lights have gone up.
  19. A triumph for all concerned, it is especially so for the multitalented Chereau.
  20. Cho's weapons are a wildly imaginative sense of humor and the courage to be absolutely uninhibited.
  21. Arlington Road belongs to that splendid Hollywood tradition of dealing with serious, timely issues in the form of a suspense thriller.
  22. Irresistible, hugely satisfying feminist fairy tale.
  23. For an American film it is a groundbreaker in exploring the realm of sexual fluidity, and it does so with wit, wisdom and in a completely entertaining fashion.
  24. It is such a grand, romantic entertainment that it sweeps the viewer along in its swiftly escalating suspense.
  25. Lives up to its ambitiousness in all its aspects.
  26. Hank is but the latest of Thornton's strikingly taciturn characters in a whole string of movies, but for Berry, Leticia represents a big-screen breakthrough.
  27. If ever there was a prime example of art bringing order out of chaos, it is Steven Rosenbaum's 7 Days in September. -- The result is a narrative at once personal, admirably coherent and, above all, heartening.
  28. An across-the-board delight featuring a spot-on ensemble cast that treats the most awkward and embarrassing moments in the rites of passage with affectionate hilarity.
  29. Like the best of personal, independent cinema -- it is both marvelously observed and completely individual. There is no film like this film, and that is something you don't hear every day.
  30. Jackie Chan's best American picture to date, breathes fresh life into the virtually dormant comedy-western.
  31. In his knockout directorial debut writer Kevin Williamson taps into such universal memories with his shrewd and energetic dark comedy.
  32. Intelligent, poignant film.
  33. Highly entertaining and encouraging documentary.
  34. A diabolically clever psychological suspense movie.
  35. Biting and vicious, a styptic pencil on the battered face of "civilized divorce." It's also thoughtful, laceratingly funny, and bravely true to its own black-and-blue comic vision. [8 Dec 1989]
  36. A remarkably thoughtful drama, Lantana makes it clear not only how hard to come by any emotional comfort is in this life, but more important, why we can't give up on the struggle.
  37. An elegant, poetic fable of endurance.
  38. The result is a kind of ultimate romantic film, joining an almost Jamesian sadness and discipline to that extraordinary visual sensibility. It's not the kind of thing you see every day.
  39. All of this romantic back and forth unfolds gradually and in charming ensemble style. As the characters think about seducing each other, as they inevitably complicate their lives without being able to help themselves, the film is simultaneously seducing us.
  40. This is the best class of poetic realism, the kind you can believe in without a trace of hesitation.
  41. A smart, lively and unpretentious exploitation picture...Consistently funny and clever.
  42. Working Girl is the sparkling success that it is because of the sheer irresistibility of Melanie Griffith. [21 Dec 1988, Calendar, p.6-1]
  43. A witty and sophisticated sensibility brings individuality to the classic odd-couple comedy.
  44. It is a film of uncommon intelligence and rigor that illuminates a complex era, and the romance at its center is also one of exceptional passion and honesty.
  45. A luminous, piercing film from the Elizabeth Bowen novel, richly evokes a world of privilege on the verge of disintegration.
  46. A pleasure in all ways.
  47. In a sea of one-note symphonies, this touching feature is bleak and comic, heartbreaking and affirmative, romantic and tragic, gimlet-eyed and sympathetic, all at the same time.
  48. Moll, in only his second feature, evokes a sense of foreboding, playing the routine against the unnerving, the humorous against the sinister, with a wit and deftness that might have impressed Hitchcock.
  49. A wonder several times over.
  50. There is a sophistication about affairs of the heart, about the wisdom and the risks of romantic involvement that is more than quintessentially French. It's irresistible as well.
  51. A beautiful film that flows with a luminous ease and assurance.
  52. A small gem.
  53. This complex, sophisticated and increasingly suspenseful tale of love and betrayal, intrigue and redemption, is as elegant as its star and its settings.
  54. A mesmerizing, shimmering and amazingly successful adaptation of Time Regained.
  55. Has the same kind of humor, charm and sensuality that made "Like Water for Chocolate" the most popular foreign-language film until "Life Is Beautiful" came along.
  56. For so brisk and entertaining a film, sharp in its observations but light in its touch, Cooking has unexpected substance and is a formidable accomplishment in that it brings dimension to its nearly 40 principal characters.
  57. Not only is it Merchant's best directorial effort to date but also is among the finest films the Merchant Ivory company has ever made.
  58. Favreau, who wrote "Swingers," has now directed and written the hilarious Made, which re-teams him with Vaughn. The two play off each other so well that they recall fond memories of Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau.
  59. Malena the film is as beautiful and seductive as its heroine, with its ravishing Lajos Koltai cinematography and sweepingly romantic Ennio Morricone score.
  60. Complex, challenging and richly rewarding, it glows with the kind of wrenchingly selfless portrayals that are the hallmark of the Bergman classics.
  61. A hoot, a hilarious comedy that's smart and caring, yet sexy and ingenious enough that it just might stir up some of that elusive "Full Monty"-style box-office appeal.
  62. Wonderfully humanistic film. Yi Yi investigates the entire melody of life.
  63. A classic war film, at once elegiac and immediate, that takes you smack into the chaos of combat yet is marked by a detached perspective.
  64. Im Kwon Taek's exquisite Chunhyang brings to the screen one of Korea's most cherished folk tales, a timeless romance in which the lovers are challenged by differences in class.
  65. Being able to hear this kind of playing is a special moment in time, one we don't want to end and one that we're privileged to experience.
  66. For all its nonstop energy and high spirits, Can't Hardly Wait allows its characters to emerge as fully dimensional individuals; they've been written with care and perception and played with equal aplomb by a roster of talented young actors.
  67. For fans of this kind of roots music, it was an event you would have given anything to attend. Down From the Mountain lets you do that and gives you terrific seats in the bargain.
  68. A seamless model of form and content. (My only quibble is the poor quality of the digital video, which doesn't do justice to Johnson's work.)
  69. It is a bravura work that attests to Pineyro's command of a style rich in texture and nuance and also of multilayered material.
  70. Yet another Merchant Ivory triumph.
  71. Identifying herself with other minorities (whose members she mimics outrageously), Cho shatters racial and sexual stereotypes with merciless wit.
  72. Corrente's gift for evoking the lives of blue-collar men that made his debut film, "Federal Hill," so appealing blends perfectly with the antic sensibility of the Farrellys.
  73. Because Bay of Angels reveals rather than moralizes, because its concerns are character and psychology, it's a potent showcase for Moreau's gifts.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Circuitry plugs into the underground world of raves. The scene, complete with drugs and its own culture, is blissfully examined in a documentary that speaks the language of its youthful generation.
  74. A mature, accomplished piece of work, both funny and deeply felt, personal cinema of the best kind...Levinson has made the memory film we always hoped he would.
  75. Haneke illuminates beautifully the lives of his people with an eye for the revealing nuance and detail.
  76. Above all else expresses the timeless impact of Lily Bart's plight.
  77. Besides Montand's splendid performance, The Wide Blue Road's other treat is seeing a film that's both old-fashioned enough to believe that social concerns can lead to satisfying drama and well-made enough to deliver on that belief. A film infused with that kind of passion never goes out of style.
  78. A splendid instance of a surrealist vision that serves to heighten the impact of genuine emotions experienced by believably real people.
  79. In directing The Monkey's Mask from Annie Kennedy's adaptation of Dorothy Porter's novel-in-poetry, Samantha Lang displays considerable style and assurance, with Porter and McGillis giving beautifully nuanced portrayals.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A lovely piece of movie making: precisely controlled but with a lived-in scruffiness.
  80. A warm and feisty documentary that is as much inquiry as it is tribute.
  81. With the ambitious and ominous The Devil's Backbone, Del Toro rises to a new level of accomplishment, adding history and politics to his distinctive blend.
  82. The sweeping, confounding conclusion therefore unfolds with a beauty and an ease that seem truly organic. The Way We Laughed has that feeling of being a work of art.
  83. In recent years, South Korean cinema has fully flowered, producing both uncompromising highly personal films and crisp, intelligent genre movies, with Shiri the most spectacular example of the latter to date.
  84. Has everything a period romance should have, including a score by Michael Nyman and passionate performances by stars Ralph Fiennes and Julianne Moore.
  85. Breathtaking reverie worthy of Fellini.
  86. Remains a timeless, major work of a master.
  87. Abounds in psychological suspense and plays like a mystery film, even though the mystery at hand may be purely one of the human heart.
  88. Martel's sharp observations of the foibles of human nature are expressed perfectly in the telling images of cinematographer Hugo Colace and tight editing of Santiago Ricci.
  89. Carefully made, involving and old-fashioned, the superior work it's inspired gives it an impact that lingers even when the endgame is over.
  90. As the film, with its haunting score and inspired use of popular music, builds flawlessly to its resounding conclusion, it is accompanied by a pitch-dark humor that grows out of the sheer absurdity of the city's daily body count.
  91. An elegant study of devious mind games and emotional perversion, it makes the strangest of psychological dynamics plausible and involving.
  92. An extraordinarily intimate, deeply affecting and revelatory documentary on how pain and passion can come together in a creative artist.
  93. A heart-tugger made totally irresistible because of the combination of Kitano's wry, sly sense of humor and his rigorous detachment.
  94. Lucie Aubrac has it all: a tender romance, acute suspense, terrific acting, and a camera style and and score that are beautiful yet understated...a major work, possessing breadth, depth and passion.
  95. An accomplished film that continually takes us beyond our first impressions of people and situations.
  96. A film of stunning impact.
  97. A most-affecting experience, an impressive accomplishment in all its aspects.
  98. Not only is the film that good, it's also that wonderfully, inescapably Czech.

Top Trailers