Los Angeles Times' Scores

For 7,177 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 60% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 37% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 0.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 Man on Wire
Lowest review score: 0 Vegas Vacation
Score distribution:
7,177 movie reviews
  1. It's big, cartoonish and empty, with an interesting premise that is underdeveloped and overproduced. [3 July 1975, p.Calendar 6]
    • 55 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    By our quote-unquote standards of contemporary comedy, it plays as uneven at best and often just flattens out for long jokeless stretches.
  2. Though assured in execution and not without a few moments of genuine tension — mainly emanating from Combs' flinty weirdness — Would You Rather is hardly a most dangerous game night at the movies.
  3. All the talking would be fine, but the dialogue is preachy, the drama too earnest and the action kind of sluggish, though it's hard not to get a jolt when Johnson jumps behind the wheel.
  4. Really the biggest problem with Dark Skies is that Stewart can never quite decide just what story he is telling — a slow-burn horror parable or paranoid invasion flick — or whether to focus on this character or that, instead struggling to string together scares regardless of how they fit together overall.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Mumia Abu-Jamal would be the perfect subject for an investigative documentary that explored his life and thought with a calm and even hand. Mumia: Long Distance Revolutionary is not that film.
  5. More than a gimmick, that self-conscious visual strategy suits the self-impressed creative-class characters, even as it is, finally, more interesting than they are.
  6. The war crimes and romance stories theoretically run on parallel tracks, but the overall pacing is ragged and the dialogue frequently out of step with the characters we've met.
  7. The film, directed by first-timer Rocky Powell, has a different happy ending in mind, one that adheres to rom-com formulas in a manner that should give it a second life on basic cable. Just don't expect to fall hard for it.
  8. 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.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Brad Leong's comedy has some nicely miserable character beats.
  9. The noir-ish contours of writer-director Ana Piterbarg's story yield a frustratingly dissipated movie, one with few storytelling pleasures and an overabundance of forced mood.
  10. It's massive, all the retaliation and the world saving stuff. And it's convoluted. Frankly no one should have to think that hard to keep up with the Joes.
  11. "Rubber" felt inventive and complex, but here Dupieux's absurdism is simply muddled, masking the fact he doesn't really have much to say.
  12. It starts out like a house afire, but by the time it's over we're the ones feeling burned. A slick heist tale with more twists than sense, this is one movie that ends up outsmarting itself.
  13. As a portrait of female strength and a celebration of the artistic spirit, Leonie too seldom comes fully alive.
  14. McGuinness has a commendable grasp of visual textures and rhythms. It will be interesting to see what she does with a stronger story to tell. Here, reaching for dramatic effect, she comes up empty.
  15. The promise it begins with doesn't pay off. And while Arthur Newman is not a complete disaster, it does leave you wishing the romance and the ride had been a whole lot smoother.
  16. There's still a nagging, cartoonish emptiness — and a trilogy-ending installment still to come.
  17. The great failing of The Iceman is not in giving us a monster, but in not making us care.
  18. With many languid scenes and little narrative momentum, Algrant may have been aiming for a more ethereal father-son heartbreaker. But all that comes across is twee hipster romanticism.
  19. A flavorless feast, with the movie's few mystical leaps clunkily handled.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    The director has steadfastly proclaimed his passion for the novel, but the film he's made of it too often plays as no more than an excuse to display his frantic, frenetic personal style.
  20. No One Lives is a cheap horror prank that's ultimately not clever or accomplished enough to sustain its eccentricities, and they are very bloody eccentricities indeed.
  21. While the plot is a non-starter, the margins of Gold and co-director Tammy Caplan's debut feature are scattered with other real-life magicians who make quarters vanish every time our attention does the same.
  22. Free Samples is a film about wasting time, and it feels like it. Despite clocking in at 79 minutes, Jay Gammill's comedy drags by no fault of its delightfully sour lead.
  23. For all the talent up on the screen — and one can't fault the performances — the movie just doesn't deliver.
  24. A sweet, sincere, yet ultimately tepid story.
  25. Violet & Daisy comes out of the gate guns blazing. Too bad it ends as a misfire.
  26. It's a handsome nothing, at least until you get sick of the screaming.
  27. Unfinished Song is a movie so geared toward hitting its spots, it amounts to emotional Muzak rather than something truly played live.
  28. The hour of mike time isn't as strong as such previous dispatches as "Seriously…Funny."
  29. Kramer, 10 years removed from his lone critical success, "The Cooler," and writer Adam Minarovich aren't exactly aping Tarantino, if only because they don't have the talent or inclination to aim that high.
  30. What could have been an empowering and amusing riff on the typically male underdog genre is mostly charmless.
  31. 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.
  32. The Rooftop is a bullet train to bananasville, its tonal eccentricities sure to wear out even the most dedicated connoisseur of silly cinema.
  33. A tonal jumble, veering between forced farce and tired, rom-com beats, with little feeling real or true.
  34. It's hard to remember when actors have stepped into such a no-win situation and mustered up such panache: Turturro may be on a sinking ship, but he manages to drown brilliantly.
  35. There's little that feels fresh, freaky or funny about one more batch of eccentric reactions to hungry corpses, one more attempt to creatively splatter, one more metaphor for zombie invasion.
  36. When Drift sticks to the likable, gently humorous contours of occasionally fractious brotherly love, broken up by thrillingly shot surfing footage, it has plenty of charm, period flavor and breezy visual breadth... Where the movie routinely disappoints, though, is in pursuit of a perfect storm of conflict story lines.
  37. The elder Makhmalbaf, who wrote and directed, puts many spins on this ethereal mood piece — it is by turns poetic, impressionistic, metaphorical and even a bit trippy — without satisfying such genre basics as structure, depth and resolution.
  38. Though individual set pieces are well done, the film inevitably leaves an empty taste behind it once it's done.
  39. We're the Millers is full of moments that feel as forced as the marriage of convenience — and contrivance — in the movie.
  40. [Guo's] film, which at first hints at a wry critique of materialism but ends up reveling in it, is a timely snapshot of aspirational glitz in the big city.
  41. With little room to feel for or even understand Anna Maria, Paradise: Faith rarely seems more than high art with low intentions.
  42. Unfortunately, there's a lack of structure, context and point of view to the largely gray, grim, hardscrabble world presented here.
    • 40 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Dark Tourist gets bogged down in insufferably slow-moving scenes — interestingly, when Jim is interacting with others, despite consummate performances from Cudlitz and Griffith.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Focused on the task at hand and exhausted from the effort, Stephen is often authentically moving, but on the ground, a manufactured awareness that this is all being filmed — along with a treacly score — mars the feel-good atmosphere.
  43. Aiming to discomfort, the film ends up retreating.
  44. A flimsy episodic feature.
  45. Though writer-director Bryan Anthony Ramirez keeps things moving apace, he trots out so many familiar tropes that it's often like watching a highlights reel from a lifetime's worth of urban crime dramas.
  46. This busy-yet-dull sequel feels like Wan robotically flexing his manipulation of fright-film signposts, an exercise more silly than sinister.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    While the film does not lack production values and panache, Gordon's direction often seems thoughtless.
  47. Baggage Claim promotes painfully outdated social mores.
  48. Solid performances aside, closing-credits comments from the movie's crew members on marriage and divorce offer fresher insights than any of the story's run-of-the-mill shenanigans.
  49. Cassadaga tries to scoop up enough tropes to satisfy a wide range of potential fright fans but lacks the cohesion to ever truly be effective.
  50. Inconsistencies cause more confusion than the magic Rose is presumably going for.
  51. May please non-discriminating fans of its co-writer/director/star (and more) Jackie Chan, but will likely leave most other viewers dazed, confused and eagerly watching the clock.
  52. The film's colorblindness does not make up for its latent sexism.
  53. Scenes can drag; they at times pay homage to the filmmaker's memories rather than drive the narrative forward.
  54. This somber work about the worthiness of living has little life in it.
  55. Sal
    Franco seems torn, on the one hand presenting his subject as a likably ordinary, self-involved actor and on the other sanctifying him as a would-be gay icon in a conformist industry.
  56. Busy, but not exactly invigorating.
  57. Despite the good intentions, structurally it's all over the place with an excess of montages, archival footage, interviews and information practically drowning out any chance to appreciate the richness of the German composer's beloved achievement.
  58. Many of the transitions between narrative and music are rough. The temptations of the street, all too real in the real world, feel forced. Confrontations become clichés. The substance of human motivation is missing. And thus the heart never beats as it should.
  59. Everything ultimately gives way to the stately, simplistic, inevitable pace of by-the-numbers biopics, from some woefully tinny, hit-and-run screenwriting to the usual difficulties surrounding the dramatization of an author's craft.
  60. Despite the story's melodramatic contrivances the creation of characters we actually care about is beyond this film's capabilities.
  61. As it zigs and zags, its plot unravels rather than tightens, and its curveball of an ending is bound to leave audiences feeling as double-crossed as some of the characters.
  62. The drama is undone by hyperventilating poetics and a busy time-hopping structure.
  63. This brief film often feels like an extended gripe session instead of something more profound or game-changing.
  64. The Nut Job features decent CG animation, especially of animals, but the writing isn't particularly clever, relying on obvious puns and slapstick humor.
  65. This brief, loosely-knit film never builds any empathy or tension.
  66. What makes this film particularly bedeviling is that you get the sense there is a nice guy behind this mess, one not so callous about matters of the heart. If anything, the raunch seems forced. The closer the film gets to real emotions, the more authentic it feels.
  67. Though the actors' chemistry sets off no fireworks and the story is never truly involving, the movie does manage to avoid being outright painful.
  68. 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.
  69. The Attorney is on the side of justice, but it's a ham-fisted dramatization of real-life events that mistakes anger for persuasion.
  70. It can't decide what kind of a film it wants to be and so ends up failing across a fairly wide spectrum.
  71. Though an admirable shake-up of the typically overbearing, munch-intensive undead yarn, The Returned is still a far cry from the smarts-and-shocks zombie allegories George Romero mastered.
  72. It's so predictable in its beats and pedestrian in its execution that a viewer can slip in and out of consciousness, confident she won't miss much and will know exactly where in the story she is when she awakes.
  73. Every time things between blue-collar David (Pettyfer) and pretty, privileged Jade (Wilde) get sticky — either kissy/gooey or teary/hurt-y — and the film could go deep, "Endless" morphs into music video territory.
  74. In terms of character and plot, not one element of the intended wild ride escapes self-consciousness or becomes the least bit involving.
  75. If "The Bible" was CliffsNotes for the Scriptures, Son of God is the cheat sheet. The two-hour film condenses about four hours of what already was hasty television, and it all winds up a little dramatically static.
  76. It is the most nonsensical crime caper to make it on screen in a while.
  77. Salva manages a few inspired scenes... But the lasting image Dark House offers is of the screenwriters hurling everything they can think of at the wall.
  78. Le Week-End is a sour and misanthropic film masquerading as an honest and sensitive romance. A painful and unremittingly bleak look at a difficult marriage, it wants us to sit through a range of domestic horrors without offering much of anything as a reward.
  79. Like many found-footage films before it, The Den never entirely suspends disbelief. It doesn't satisfyingly account for how the characters are producing all the footage.
  80. Artificially jacked up to feel like mean but serious fun, Sabotage mostly flings blood, vengeance, testosterone and clichés to the wall to see what sticks.
  81. Whatever emotional depths filmmaker Jessica Goldberg hopes to suggest, there's nothing stirring beneath the movie's static surface.
  82. An unconvincing, poorly conceived hybrid of end-of-the-world thriller and relationship drama.
  83. Berry's florid physicality has a certain silent-melodrama pull. The film around her, however, is lamentably by-the-numbers.
  84. Magical swords, evil doppelgangers, a sexy black muscle car, an unremarkable final showdown and lots of first-draft dialogue factor into this thankfully brief (about 80 minutes plus end credits) frightfest.
  85. A repetitive, sluggishly paced nocturnal rumination on why we bother reuniting with old friends we purposefully left behind.
  86. So much blandly sweeping, speechifying history and so little personalized dramatic focus turn No God, No Master into a series of issue-driven snapshots instead of something genuinely illuminating.
  87. Not unlike most of its Hollywood counterparts, though, this Hong Kong import can't resist the urge to dumb down a fascinating premise for the sake of mass consumption.
  88. Its core dance styles are a wonderfully frenetic fusion of tap and hip-hop and a truly novel blend of Japanese taiko drumming and K-pop girl-group choreography. Whenever actor Derek Hough and BoA stop leaping and twirling, though, Make Your Move is an underwritten mess.
  89. Unlike the teeming world living between the lines in Munro's story, there is not nearly enough in Hateship Loveship to keep you invested.
  90. Director Roger Gual presents little in the way of tantalizing culinary visuals, and that leaves the paper-thin characters as the main course.
  91. Ready for a singing and dancing "Reservoir Dogs"?
  92. Just the ticket for girls in their early teens.
  93. Implausible at every turn, it offers a dab of quirkiness and edge from writer-director Finn Taylor, but otherwise has nothing for audiences to embrace.

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