Los Angeles Times' Scores

For 8,105 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 0.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 61
Highest review score: 100 Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome
Lowest review score: 0 Nothing Like the Holidays
Score distribution:
8,105 movie reviews
  1. The reality it confronts is so gripping, we cannot turn away. This may not be the most sophisticated retelling of what happened while Berlin burned, but what a story it is.
  2. Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley, as high school seniors Sutter and Aimee, bring such an authentic face of confidence and questioning, indifference and need, pain and denial, friendship and first love, that it will take you back to that time if you're no longer there, and light a path if you are.
  3. In this sinister but gorgeous and compelling film by director Tomas Alfredson, being human and acting human don't always go together.
  4. Drumming is able to swing from lighter comedic moments to dramatic insights while making it seem effortless.
  5. A sort of middle-aged "Before Sunrise" unfolds, meandering and talky. But from the get-go these characters' colloquy is a mutual provocation, not a romantic seduction.
  6. As viewers of his Enron film will testify, Gibney is a scrupulous director, and Taxi to the Dark Side is filled with detailed factual information.
  7. For all its genuinely funny moments and its mix of outrageousness and insights, Down and Out remains curiously unsatisfying in the way it resolves the Nolte character.
  8. Intensely specific in story yet wide-ranging in themes, with a tone that turns on a dime from comic absurdity to close to tragedy, this is brainy, bravura filmmaking of the highest level, a motion picture that is as difficult to pigeonhole as it is a pleasure to enjoy.
  9. What Marley and its wonderful performance footage leave you with most of all is the joy the man took in the music that set him free and enchanted the world.
  10. We don't go to Michael Haneke films for comfort, but to gaze through a glass darkly. That vision -- tense, provocative and unnerving -- is on full display in The White Ribbon, which could be considered a culmination of this difficult director's brilliant career.
  11. Off-and-on cynical and sentimental, Russell's darkly comic tale shows how much can be done with familiar material when you're burning to do things differently and have the gifts to pull that off.
  12. It's a nervy, quasi-documentary scheme that's often successful, perhaps more so than you'd expect for this kind of a hybrid endeavor. But Macdonald's technique eventually turns out to be as distancing as it is involving, paradoxically undercutting the reality as often as it enhances it.
  13. Director Demme has done other potent and meaningful films, but The Agronomist defers to none of them in its effectiveness and its power.
  14. Best and most unexpected of all, Rachel Getting Married dares to mix the bitter with the sweet. It understands that life-altering situations like weddings not only bring out the worst in human behavior but also the finest.
  15. Buster Keaton isn't dead, he's alive and well in Finland, where under a new identity he pursues his own particular brand of deadpan absurdism to wonderful effect. If the name Aki Kaurismäki doesn't mean anything to you, it should, and Le Havre may be the film to make it happen.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    For how well this finely crafted work captures the pressures of inner-city poverty, single-parent families and abusive relationships, one of its strengths lies in its ability to also gracefully locate the drama in filling out a college application.
  16. As directed by Rachid Bouchareb, himself born in France to Algerian immigrants, "Days of Glory" is a kind of a North African "Saving Private Ryan," a taut, involving film that delivers all the things we look for in war movies and does so with intelligence and integrity.
  17. Two teen girls forge an explosive connection in a compelling Pawel Pawlikowski film.
  18. The jokes are quick, with clever jibes alternating with double-crosses and the occasional murder, and the streamlined plot unrolls like a colorful ball of twine.
  19. While the plot twists in Read My Lips may be too intensely melodramatic for some tastes, the performances of the two leads are impeccable, just about compelling our belief.
  20. I can't think of another good movie this year that's as tough to watch as Moodysson's, but, then, I can't think of very many movies that are as good.
  21. While most films are fortunate if they succeed on any level, The Return works easily on several, making as powerful a mark emotionally as it does visually and even allegorically. Yet the film so catches you up in its compelling story, you're almost not aware of how masterful a piece of cinema you're watching.
  22. May be the most hopeless, despairing comic-book movie in memory. It creates a world where being a superhero is at best a double-edged sword and no triumph is likely to be anything but short-lived.
  23. Filmmaking at its most fearless, with Ostergaard creating a suspenseful, harrowing account of his original key subject, known only as "Joshua."
  24. People fall in love in every country, but nowhere is the experience put on film with the flawless style, empathy and emotion the French provide. Mademoiselle Chambon is the latest in that line of deeply moving romances, an exquisite chamber piece made with the kind of sensitivity and nuance that's become almost a lost art.
  25. The storytelling is straightforward, with a classical sheen, even as mischief and hallucination puncture the serene surface.
  26. Masterfully keying the compact performances into a striking lighting scheme that often bathes the musicians and dancers in warm golden or somber indigo hues representing the cycle of life, Saura's spare, elegant staging and the fluid, intimate cinematography by the great Vittorio Storaro ("Apocalypse Now") create an intoxicating effect.
  27. As the summer heats up, let Frozen River wash over you; let its bracing drama and the intensity of its acting restore your spirits as well as your faith in American independent film.
  28. Drugstore Cowboy, an electrifying movie without one misstep or one conventional moment. [11 Oct 1989]
    • Los Angeles Times
  29. In the hands of two of the craft's best, the most ordinary of moments become illuminating, penetrating.

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