Movieline's Scores

  • Movies
For 693 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 69% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 29% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.3 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 65
Highest review score: 100 Somewhere
Lowest review score: 5 The Roommate
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 41 out of 693
693 movie reviews
  1. A movie like Norwegian Wood is a peculiar case – its intentions are sterling, and it's hard to pinpoint any technical flaws. The problem, maybe, is that it's trying too hard; Tran has such firm control over the storytelling that the resulting picture has no room to breathe.
  2. What ultimately makes the film compelling is the extent to which it uses the shared language of cinema to telegraph the caustic feelings of a people toward their own history.
  3. Between the Truffautish voice-overs and Jacques Demy-style musical interludes, it's a wonder anyone in this sort-of drama, sort-of comedy ever gets any rest.
  4. Either in spite of or because of its whimsically convincing quality, Man on a Ledge is reasonably fun to watch along the way.
  5. But there's so much going on in Big Miracle that the biggest miracle of all – the whales at the center of the story, get lost amid all the criss-crossing love stories, political wheeler-dealing and well-intentioned but inadequate rescue missions.
  6. Doesn't turn out to be as gauzily sentimental as its beginning (or its marketing materials) suggests.
  7. Wanderlust is an agreeable comedy that peters out halfway through.
  8. Seyfried has spent too much time lately in vehicles that aren't worthy of her, "Red Riding Hood" being the most egregious example. Gone at least takes her seriously – except when, to delicious effect, it doesn't.
  9. At what point do we stop applauding the Duplass brothers for their gumption and stick-to-itiveness and admit that, maybe, their storytelling just isn't so hot? Or that their characters sometimes seem more like groovy-cute constructs than believable people?
  10. The picture is also weirdly compelling, maybe most notably for the way Dafoe's character - who is, in this respect, perhaps a stand-in for the Bronx-born Ferrara - seems to be grappling less with the idea that the world is ending than that the city is ending.
  11. Bully is much better when it sticks to simple storytelling. And storytelling, not grandstanding, is the thing that just might grab the attention of, say, school administrators, people who can have some effect on how bullies are dealt with.
  12. It's still a kick to watch Kathleen Turner don a housedress and trade soothing pieties with Richard Chamberlain. The Perfect Family feels like it could have been more than that, but I suppose counting its blessings is the more Christian thing to do.
  13. It's a film that should be appallingly twee, but more often than not is actually scruffy and sweet, thanks to a nicely underplayed turn by Chandler Canterbury as the kid, Kelsey, and the chemistry between Jason Ritter and Jake Sandvig as hipster grifters Ben and Alan.
  14. The picture is at least spirited, a jaunty trifle that's low on eroticism but high on cartoony coquettishness. Like the little motorized whatsit that is its subject, it does have its charms.
  15. So why can't I love Moonrise Kingdom? For all the movie's technical meticulousness, the storytelling still has a wiggly-waggly quality, like a dangly loose tooth.
  16. On the whole Bel Ami is highly watchable.
  17. Though it's a bit of an oddity, it's an affecting curio suitable for both Hardy enthusiasts and Winterbottom fans alike.
  18. In its own way and to its own detriment, William Friedkin's splattery, southern gothic return to the screen seeks to amuse as well as shake and stir.
  19. Like much of the movie, Norton's presence has a patient, diligent quality to it, as if what's on screen is just a slog to get through before some promised fun in the next installment.
  20. Premium Rush is a half-entertaining, half-exasperating movie.
  21. Turns out to be a disappointingly standard addiction story in its second half also serves as a reminder that Hollywood tends to be more invested in these types of self-serious movies than most actual audiences.
  22. Scripted by playwright Tom Stoppard, the film labors to fit Tolstoy's sprawling story into its two hour and ten minute runtime by drawing its characters with minimal lines.
  23. The latter half of The Impossible is so disappointingly movie-ish, tying a bow on the events after portraying them too vividly to allow them to be wrapped so neatly. It wrings out tears with an industrious efficiency that leaves you feeling manhandled after the exhilarating, terrifying footage that's unfolded before.
  24. Apatow's film comes across as overstuffed and understructured, a collection of elements that hasn't really been assembled into a story and could do with the backbone.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 65 Critic Score
    Beat by beat, Jack Reacher is just like Child's paperbacks in the best possible way: it's fast, fun, and smarter than it looks.
  25. Kári relies too heavily on the fleeting rewards of situation for the film to come together as an involving story.
  26. Designed to be both essential history lesson and costume weeper, Princess Kaiulani comes up short on both fronts: Deadly earnest intentions and lack of dramatic gumption ensure that the story of Hawaii’s favored daughter remains under-told.
  27. While Survival of the Dead does its best to work up a decent allegorical bent -- this time involving territorial pissing matches within a country under siege -- its power is diffused (and frankly, confused) by its execution.
  28. Straining for a timeless, family-friendly tone, Allen winds up with something closer to an unironically -- i.e. absurdly -- wholesome rehash of "Leave it to Beaver."
  29. Completely harmless and inoffensive, and at the very least, Shyamalan appears to be having a little fun here.
  30. Mirren tricked out in mid-70's pimp wear -- ahead of her time, she even brandishes a cane -- has a certain charm, but novelty alone can't keep Love Ranch's tiresome tropes and plodding storyline from dragging the film down through the Nevada dust.
  31. Based on a true story which director Marco Amenta explored 12 years ago in documentary form, The Sicilian Girl feels powered by unfocused preoccupation, rather than by a more compelling creative ambition.
  32. Peepli Live opens out slowly to encompass several factions of Indian society, including the press, local, state, and federal politicians, and the shady elements binding them all together. It's a meticulously engineered design that a show like The Wire took several years to execute; here the strain shows within the first half hour.
  33. The degree to which they are willing to share their bodies with the world, seeming to reach out for it with each impossible extension, drawing it in with every reeling arabesque, suggests a desire for engagement that is visceral, human, and true in all the ways this film is not.
  34. Despite these two actors' decent - and occasionally very charming - performances the film stacks the odds of the audience caring about Heigl and Duhamel against a narrative vacuum that favors eye candy and cheap effect over emotional logic.
  35. The story is so bounteous that Goldwyn can't quite get a grip on it.
  36. Chastain, an incandescent redhead with a heart-shaped face and round, shining eyes, does more justice to the part than it deserves.
  37. It's hard to tell what Wild Target is offering, besides the pleasure of its company.
  38. The film presents the rare instance of a true story that has been fictionalized and yet seems bent on cleaving to its least useful facts.
  39. It's difficult to get a firm grip on most of what Disco and Atomic War, constructed in a mish-mash collage style, has to offer.
  40. Hickenlooper too often approaches his subject with the filmmaking equivalent of a wry chuckle.
  41. The animation itself is technically gorgeous, a class act all the way. But there's so little to be found in the faces of the characters, or even in the way their limbs move (much of it adopted, cleverly enough, from Tati's own physical style), that it's not clear what we're supposed to feel for them.
  42. Disappointingly ordinary film.
  43. It goes down like a canned but genial '80s comedy: Without fanfare or much nutrition; part of your balanced breakfast.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    There's an enchanting, and very Western, musicality in Certified Copy, a mash-up that charms; Mad Decent - master masher, dj and producer Diplo's label - aptly describes it. (Diplo and Buñuel would've loved each other).
  44. A concerted effort to make a scary movie without spilling a drop of blood, Insidious is earnest to the point of suffocation about scaring you silly.
  45. Though the film concerns events contained within the roughly 50 square blocks of the East Village, it suffers from the narrative equivalent of urban sprawl.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    You can't help but feel that the ambition of Henry's Crime was determined by the near anonymity of its title - the movie seems to be ensconcing itself into the Witness Relocation Program.
  46. Unfortunately, Silver's movie doesn't cut deep enough: It glosses over some thorny questions and hammers too fixedly on others.
  47. Despite heavy-handed characterizations, Devine and Bassett make their stake in the union felt, and it's anything but superficial.
  48. Portman is also a producer of Hesher; it is the first of her new company's films. It's not too tough to see what might have drawn a producer to the project: The story's mix of the mythical and the mundane has become an indie staple, and Hesher's edge might have proved artful instead of shredding everything in its path. For any actress, however, the part of Nicole is embarrassingly thin.
  49. Despite its tai chi pace and genre-friendly characters, it's almost impossible to tell what's happening in the intriguing, intractable Road to Nowhere.
  50. Takes forever to get going and then goes nowhere.
  51. The film is so busy rifling through genres that it fails to develop a coherent flavor of its own.
  52. Getting a movie's setup right is one thing. But following through on an intriguing premise is the hard part, and that's where Matthew Chapman's The Ledge, a thriller that wrangles with intricate ideas about faith and religious extremism, goes splat.
  53. The scenes between the young actresses are the film's most compelling: Both first-timers, Manamela and Makanyane are possessed of extraordinary faces and plain attitudes.
  54. In the end, the action sequences are just overblown and dollar-squandering, with no particular payoff in the entertainment department. The supporting actors - particularly Jones, Tucci and Luke - are the thing to watch here; they do all they can to keep the movie's gears running smoothly.
  55. Though the picture is lovingly and often quite strikingly shot and styled, there are too many dangling and swiftly clipped threads for the film to amount to more than another tasteful Sunday matinee set against one of the worst atrocities of the 20th century.
  56. Like the Inuit and their many words for "snow," Jake has a thousand squinty faces and they all mean "Bugger off."
  57. Del Toro loves his creatures. Maybe he loves them too much: He always wants us to get a good look at them, and that's one of the things that saps the spookiness from this Don't Be Afraid of the Dark.
  58. The Debt shortchanges itself severely with the weight it gives the portion of its story set further in the past.
  59. While it's not quite enough to fuel a whole feature, the premise of Tucker & Dale vs Evil is a slice of meta-genre brilliance.
  60. Johnny English Reborn never quite ignites, even though it starts out promisingly enough.
  61. Despite this new expansion in scale, Immortals lacks the inexorable forward momentum of its role model "300," as well as that movie's audacious, gleeful fascism and oblivious, accidental homoeroticism.
  62. Robin Williams, who's sometimes too overbearing in real-life live action, makes a great cartoon-character voice.
  63. Unfortunately, outside of the proxy satisfaction it will give those who are dying to see the grim reaper let loose on the set of a very special episode of "Glee," the pleasures of Don't Go in the Woods can't quite compensate for its straggly bits.
  64. A well-intentioned, pleasant-enough picture that shoots off in too many directions to ever ignite.
  65. In the end Red Tails is mostly about the coolness of flying. Its heart is in the clouds, instead of with the men at the controls.
  66. But it's to little Benny that the film's heart belongs -- an adorable kid who seems to live only half in this world and the rest of the time in his own imagination, Benny's on a regimen of Ritalin and Lithium and other meds that sometimes leave him even dreamier than is his norm.
  67. There's no doubt that Being Flynn is an attempt at something painful and genuine – the movie itself yearns to make a connection, even if it can't quite locate the most effective channels.
  68. Jennifer Westfeldt's sort-of romantic comedy Friends with Kids is on to something, even if in the end it suffers from a failure of nerve.
  69. Comes across like the creation of a precocious student. I don't mean that to be a damning critique, though Detachment is a mesmerizing misfire -- it's just that it has the uncomplicated earnestness and hyperbolic melodrama of teenage poetry.
  70. A movie about childhood nightmares that plays too much like an actual, incoherent nightmare to make a good movie, Intruders is a psychodrama divided against itself.
  71. How much you enjoy Damsels will depend on your tolerance for Stillman's particular brand of duct-taped Sperry Topsider whimsy. It's a comedy! It's a musical! It's a trip down memory lane to revisit the blissful confusion of our - or someone's - college years!
  72. As lukewarm as We Have a Pope may be as a piece of filmmaking, Moretti doesn't tread particularly gently into sacred territory. The picture could be more irreverent, but at least it dares to suggest that popes are people too.
  73. The Lucky One aspires to but never reaches the grandly melodramatic heights of the über-Sparks adaptation "The Notebook," though a reconciliation embrace in an outdoor shower of some sort seems deliberately staged to evoke the earlier feature.
  74. It was a stroke of genius, at least a miniature one, to cast Black in this role – he's made to play the affable teddy bear who could snap at any moment.
  75. A handsome-looking thing, with fairly grand period costumes and reasonably lavish sets. So much for production values: In every other way the picture is stiff and unyielding, hampered by a clumsy plot and diorama performances. The whole thing has the feel of a second-rate living-history exhibit.
  76. It's hard to say whether Sound of My Voice is a wholly bogus and pretentious indie enterprise or a weirdly compelling bit of low-budget storytelling.
  77. The picture is broken down into narrative chunks that ultimately don't tell much of a story – what you get instead is a series of mini-climaxes held together by banter between characters.
  78. Girl in Progress feels a little trapped by its own conceits: It plays with the idea that all rebellion is in some sense performed and makes a caricature out of the immature, attention-hungry mother, but it never liberates its characters from their molds.
  79. Its occasional entertainment value aside, the picture is also blithe to the point of being flimsy.
  80. Actually, The Intouchables isn't bad - its merely shameless, but at least it's overtly so.
  81. Most wonderful of all is Josh Brolin as the young Agent K. It's so easy to believe that Brolin could turn into Jones, given a couple of decades.
  82. Why can't heroines just be heroines anymore, instead of micromanaged personalities who may as well have the words "Role Model" tattooed across their foreheads?
  83. It's a slender story of mourning that manages some lovely bits of mood while also being dreary and a little preposterous in its spareness.
  84. It's imaginative only in a stiff, expensive way. Scott vests the movie with an admirable degree of integrity – it doesn't feel like a cheap grab for our moviegoing dollars – but it doesn't inspire anything so vital as wonder or fear, either.
  85. I was with the movie every step of the way, right until the final credits began rolling – at which point I realized that the whole thing made no sense whatsoever, and that none of my nagging questions about what the hell was going on would ever be answered. There's a distinction to be made between being a dupe and being had.
  86. Combines a deviously tragicomic take on the approaching annihilation of mankind with a irritatingly unconvincing and unnecessary love story.
  87. The divide between Tatum as performer and Tatum as actor gives the film an interesting unsteadiness.
  88. The movie muddles to a rug-pulling ending that doesn't, despite its efforts, shed new light on what's come before.
  89. The picture coasts along quite nicely on the strength of its contemplative sensuality, its macaron colors, and the exquisite beauty of its three chief actresses, Léa Seydoux, Virginie Ledoyen and Diane Kruger. Oh, and there's nudity in it too, not to mention lesbian undertones – or are they overtones?
  90. Step Up Revolution is also not a movie you watch for its incredible story and dialogue. The film doesn't even share much connective tissue with its predecessors save for an appearance from Adam Sevani as Moose.
    • 65 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Had the movie been made with two different lead actors, I surely believe the movie would have been unwatchable.
  91. Ferrell and Galifianakis both do what they've proven they can do so well in the past, while McDermott, clad in all black, is surprisingly good in a comedic role.
  92. Sometimes funny, sometimes shrill and wildly uneven, Bachelorette demonstrates film and television's continuing struggle to provide a platform for funny women in the realms of R-rated comedy and the tug-of-war between the desire to push boundaries and fears about likability.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    Gere does his best to give Arbitrage an agitated energy, but Jarecki's fatalism works against the film.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    So it's too bad 10 Years isn't, you know, funny.
  93. Trouble With The Curve is an ode to the old ways of doing things, both in terms of acting and baseball.
  94. Bella's an empowered badass in this last installment, wielding newborn strength while showing unusual self-control and learning to use her new abilities - and that's why things feel off.

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