Los Angeles Times' Scores

For 8,040 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 59% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 37% 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: 61
Highest review score: 100 Boy Meets Girl
Lowest review score: 0 Lethal Weapon 4
Score distribution:
8,040 movie reviews
  1. The writing-directing brothers are usually interested in the small stuff of everyday, but perhaps they've gone a little too small here.
  2. Though Pitt is as attractive as ever, "Seven Years" offers other things to look at and in fact functions better as a travelogue than as a drama.
  3. The film's greatest asset is Kelly LeBrock, who is triumphant. She may represent souped-up womanhood at its most fanciful but she does so with great warmth and a sharp sense of herself.
  4. By turns sexy and exasperating, hypnotic and confusing, this Mexican import is an art film for the patient, adventurous and, let's be honest, forgiving.
  5. The soul of the grape, that thing that elevates a wine to greatness, proves here as elusive on screen as in the bottle.
  6. Too flat and academic to come alive. The film's lack of dimension tends to render much of it banal, and Downey's lengthy harangues, as beautifully wrought as they are, are overly literary, which serves to make this intricate film seem all the more contrived.
  7. This skillfully made Italian heart-tugger was a success on home ground. Its star, Marco Filiberti, in an audacious writing and directing debut, has lots on his mind and much in his heart, and as a filmmaker displays a Douglas Sirkian flair for finding substance in melodrama.
  8. This film has much more to do with what goes on inside director Tim Burton's head than with any TV show, no matter how beloved. In fact, Dark Shadows is as good an example as any of what might be called the Way of Tim, a style of making films that, like the drinking of blood, is very much an acquired taste and, unless you're a vampire, not worth the effort.
  9. Leung manages to present a barrage of intriguing theories debunking our generally accepted beliefs and misperceptions about how HIV/AIDS is acquired, tested, diagnosed, defined and treated. It's a vital yet thorny approach whose inconclusiveness is bound to sadden or infuriate anyone who's lost a loved one to AIDS.
  10. You can't blame Hunt for perhaps taking on too much — at least she wrote herself a complicated role in this sorry age for front-and-center movie women — but it doesn't always make for a smooth Ride.
  11. Richard Ray Perez's documentary concerns the myth more than the man.
  12. Squanders an appealing performance from Costner.
  13. It looks as if no one bothered to deliver more than the minimum requirement of magic or artistry.
    • 26 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Tideland is equally evocative of the pastoral mystery of an Andrew Wyeth painting and the looming menace of "Psycho." The disparity is fitting, because as Tideland unfolds, it's difficult to tell if you're watching a fantasy or a horror movie, or one superimposed on the other.
  14. As it turns out, spending a couple of hours with emotionally arrested, socially moronic characters is not a whole lot more fun than spending a couple of hours with actual emotionally arrested, socially moronic people.
  15. There is something sharp, exciting and more original tucked within The Berlin File — and it is in moments a sleek, crackling film — but it all feels somehow misshapen.
  16. A film rich in atmosphere but emotionally as blunt as its title.
  17. Like Moore's film, Celsius hits too many topics with too broad a brush, resulting in yet another contribution to this campaign season's spin cycle of rhetoric.
  18. As advertised, A Knight's Tale does try to rock you. The problem is, it doesn't rock you nearly enough.
  19. The impulse to shtick it up to burlesque-level inanity is encouraged at every turn.
  20. Strictly for the very young who will find giggles in the anthropomorphic mash-ups and won't be too distracted by the predictably mawkish sitcom plot.
  21. Has to fight to hold our attention and it doesn't always succeed.
  22. There are lots of hilarious, off-the-wall incidents, and the film has a likable freewheeling spirit to go with its knockabout plot. But the film isn't as remotely funny as it means to be.
  23. Director Kevin Rodney Sullivan milks the film's one joke for all it's worth - which isn't much - before settling into the rote rhythms of a buddy picture.
  24. With two of the world's biggest stars in tow, the creators of The Devil's Own can be forgiven for figuring that nothing else really mattered. If you've got Harrison Ford and Brad Pitt, do you really need a coherent script? Unfortunately for everyone concerned, the answer is yes.
  25. Under Australian director George Miller ("Mad Max"), The Witches of Eastwick begins so promisingly. It has such smashing separate moments, so succulent a cast and so interesting a premise that watching it crumble into stomach-turning crudeness and "Poltergeist"-scale special effects is deeply painful.
  26. The teenager's journey through a nightmarish reverie presents hallucinogenic imagery that simultaneously dulls the senses and hot-wires the imagination, but it never fully engages emotionally.
  27. While it's difficult to dislike what this film tries to do, the way it does it is more problematic.
  28. A performer of formidable self-absorption, Johnston has inspired a film with the same trait, and the results are about what you might expect.
  29. A film that never quite manages to justify its existence.
  30. Guilty of squandering resources. Amusing as it goes about setting up its premise, in Witherspoon, the gifted veteran of "Election" and "Pleasantville," it has an actress willing to throw herself completely into the part to excellent effect.
  31. A dark piece of whimsy that enchants and befuddles in equal measure.
  32. [Aselton's] disregard for her male characters causes Black Rock to spiral into dudette "Deliverance."
  33. The cartoonish movie might have made for a funny half-hour short or sitcom pilot but runs out of track well before its conclusion.
  34. Danny Elfman's intense score contributes crucial energy, John Thomas' camera work is first-rate, but the ambitious Freeway ends up merely trashy.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The outline of a great story, but it never fills in the gaps.
  35. In the end Anna Karenina lets you down - visually stunning, emotionally overwrought, beautifully acted, but not quite right.
  36. As amiable art-house fluff, it's a passable way to kill time.
  37. Despite its dollops of good-natured humor and sentiment, Blow Dry is likely to play better on the tube as a likable-enough diversion.
  38. This journey into "Martha Marcy May Marlene" territory is never as tense and gripping as it should be, the incidents and most of the performances too tamped-down to spark a much-needed sense of animating friction.
  39. As its plot thickens, Waist Deep gets more outlandish. The whole mess empties out into an overextended car chase through Los Angeles.
  40. The noir atmosphere doesn't quite smother the dialogue's cheesy smell.
  41. In effect, aspects of Gibson's creative makeup -- his career-long interest in martyrdom and the yearning for dramatic conflict that make him an excellent actor, coupled with his belief in the Gospels' literal truth -- have sideswiped this film. What is left is a film so narrowly focused as to be inaccessible for all but the devout.
  42. Pattinson could have the makings of a brilliant career, something more than the hot streak he's got going as the "it" guy of the moment. The same problems plague the film, which is beautifully shot but its emotional potential unrealized.
  43. The film's anthropological interest in Indonesia is the smartest thing in an otherwise familiar scramble of kidnapped babes, expensive jewelry and millions of bullets.
  44. CQ
    The result is stylish but awfully slim.
  45. You might not "like" Perry's movie, but it's hard to deny the forensically assured sensibility at work.
  46. Make no mistake, it is lovely to look at this celebrity bedazzled bit of L.A. crime history for a while. But the movie ultimately leaves you feeling as empty as the lives it means to portray.
  47. None of this means that the film is necessarily enjoyable to watch, however, which is often the problem when the rigors of inspired storytelling can't live up to an imaginatively designed filmic world.
  48. Diablo Cody's glib teen-hip dialogue mostly feels like self-conscious splatter over a sorely lackluster scare flick.
  49. Only partially convincing.
  50. The structure, sliding between memories evoked by objects in the house and the common difficulties of moving day, should play with more elegance than it does. Instead, it feels awkward and frequently - as does the film on the whole - too on the nose, too obvious.
    • 14 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Relentlessly inoffensive, innocuous and vacuous, From Justin to Kelly is nowhere near as bad as its pre-release publicity would suggest.
  51. All I could think about while watching Jennifer Lopez prance through Monster-in-Law was how cool and poised she was in "Out of Sight."
  52. Scotsman not only lacks vision, a true sense of how to mesh Obree's sporting triumphs and personal setbacks, but it also lacks passion. What it needs, as strange and tacky as it may sound, is a bit more madness.
  53. 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.
  54. The results are decidedly more mind-numbing than bone-chilling.
  55. With each succeeding picture, Linklater seemed to grow as a filmmaker, just as his characters became more defined and developed. But with his fourth picture, subUrbia, he takes two giant steps backward.
  56. Melton and Dunstan have created little more than a hollow shell for an empty box.
  57. Listless, disjointed and disconnected, this meandering two-hour, 32-minute exercise in futility will fascinate no one who doesn't have a blood relation among the cast or crew.
  58. Bram, who also narrates (and writes, with co-director Judah Lazarus and Adam Zucker), may be earnest in his desire for enlightenment. But his approach feels overly self-serving; too much "Me," not enough "Kabbalah."
  59. Lazy, smugly self-satisfied movie.
  60. Peter and Vandy has the decided disadvantage of arriving a couple of months after the similarly structured "(500) Days of Summer," a movie sporting a sunnier sheen, more appealing cast and an actual reason to care about the outcome.
  61. It's a testament to the stars that they manage to sell the third act sentimentality after wading through so much screenplay triteness and unimaginative direction.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The specificity of Glory's setting and the ethnicity of its characters enrich the story without moving it one iota away from a mainstream frame of reference.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    What the new movie lacks in craft, suspense and metaphoric richness it makes up for with, um, gadgets.
  62. The scenes of servicemen feel somehow false, a screenwriter's idea of military life rather than the real thing. Myrick does an admirable job of spinning tension from a group of guys mostly standing around, but too often the film's portentous tone seems more silly than suspenseful.
  63. Sjogren's promising set-up, designed to unfold with understatement, ends up feeling remote and repressed when Sjogren miscalculates by burying her characters' emotions too far down.
  64. Abduction is just the third movie John Singleton has directed in the past decade, and it contains neither the passion nor the competence of his two previous genre efforts - "2 Fast 2 Furious" and "Four Brothers."
    • 31 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Kramer shows zero feeling for the nuances of a midlife sexual awakening.
  65. A tiresome addiction drama.
  66. Not out-and-out terrible enough to be completely dismissed, while also not particularly memorable either, perhaps the truest summation of the film is to say simply that the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a movie that exists.
  67. "Them" is spun from callow romantic notions, the sort that make for heady moments. What's conspicuously missing is any grasp of the lovers themselves.
  68. A concept, no matter how promising, is not a movie, and this picture has the bad luck to illustrate the difference.
  69. Talky, relentlessly affirming and as predictable as a paint-by-number.
  70. The film's single saving grace is Turner, who channels that legendary Catholic guilt like there is no tomorrow.
  71. Weirdly clueless.
  72. These guys have dumbed down a comic book.
  73. ATM
    Screenwriter Chris Sparling worked in confined spaces to far better effect before with the minimalist Ryan Reynolds thriller "Buried." He must have used his best ideas there.
  74. Writer-director John Chuldenko stretches a sitcom episode premise to feature-length breaking point in Nesting.
  75. Airbender, whether intentionally or not, is pegged almost exclusively to a small-fry state of mind.
  76. Isn't a remake, really. It's a "reimagining," which is a sparkly word for what happens to a beloved TV hit of yesteryear when it's cannibalized by committee.
  77. Unengaging and uninspired and that leaves far too much unexplored.
  78. If they had to make things up, couldn't they have made up something smarter?
  79. Like Freeway, the lovable stray dog at the center of this very teary comedy, Darling Companion has lost its way. Even the marquee ensemble anchored by Diane Keaton, Dianne Wiest, Kevin Kline and Richard Jenkins is not enough to rescue this motley mutt of a movie.
  80. After scoring big in 1998 with "Mary" - the zipper issue, the "hair gel" mix-up, the roving troubadours - their (Farrelly brothers) raw inventive edge has never been quite as sharp. Hall Pass, starring Owen Wilson and Jason Sudeikis, continues that creative slide into everyday crude.
  81. There's an underlying emptiness to Human Traffic and it's difficult to say for sure whether Kerrigan fully acknowledges it.
  82. Any sort of new insight into comedy's darker themes, to say nothing of life's, eludes Funny People. Instead Sandler and Rogen and the rest are left to wander aimlessly, with tedious comedy gigs, an even more tedious faux sitcom and relatively vapid relationships masquerading as a plot.
  83. It's too over-the-top, too lurid and at times simply too silly to represent any kind of valid commentary on the repressive '50s or the way in which institutions tend to destroy rather than cure. "Far From Heaven," which nailed '50s angst to perfection, Asylum could not be farther from.
  84. 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.
    • tbd Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Because Emory doesn't grapple fully with the issues that loom over the film, there is something soppy and soft-headed about Inlaws & Outlaws.
  85. The satire is sagging, the irony's atrophied and the funny is flabby.
  86. Pretty much all the things that made the original so original are filtered out of this un-original.
  87. It's really just an overstuffed story that comes off not as layered but rather as an unfocused jumble.
  88. Sophisticated romantic comedy for people who think "Corky Romano" is trenchant political satire.
  89. Fluffy and mild to the point of somnolence, it can't even get the full benefit of its strongest asset, Glenn Close's performance as the grasping virago Cruella DeVil.
  90. Kirkland manages to rise above the soap opera script with its improbable twists, stilted dialogue and internal contradictions to give a believable and often-sympathetic performance.
  91. 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.
  92. Efficiently told and features solid performances, but without the juicy character detail, vise-grip suspense or black comic intensity of its memorable forerunners, it unwinds as a boilerplate genre item.
  93. There is no real plot either; instead the narrative seems designed to get this prehistoric pair from one funny sketch to the next, which sometimes works and sometimes doesn't.

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