New York Magazine (Vulture)'s Scores

For 1,891 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 45% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 53% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1 point higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 Fruitvale Station
Lowest review score: 0 Only God Forgives
Score distribution:
1,891 movie reviews
  1. I realize that Fosse's dark sizzle might seem a bit dated today, but surely something halfway snazzy could have been devised for this movie. It's toothless.
  2. The film is too wan and distanced to sweep you up, but it holds you.
  3. It’s the difference between artistry and knowingness. About Schmidt doesn’t bring us deeply into the lives of its people because it’s too busy trying to feel superior to them.
  4. Extraordinary Measures has a soppy piano-and-strings score, but the primal fear of loss sharpens every scene.
  5. Demme’s Manchurian Candidate is far from a disgrace, but it's not freewheeling enough, not strange enough to make sense of our gathering dread.
  6. Kick-Ass 2, a movie that, for all its predictable sequel-ness, manages to conjure up pretty much the same dark magic that the earlier film did, albeit with more troubling results. Believe it or not, Kick-Ass 2 is even more of a provocation than the first Kick-Ass.
  7. Depressing, disgusting, and dated, Edmond is worth braving to experience America’s best-known serious playwright at his most gruesomely undiluted.
  8. It's not bad, exactly; the songs are catchy, the cameos are okay, and some of the jokes work fine. Set your expectations super-low, and you'll probably be fine.
  9. The screenwriter, James Solomon, does the poor job only a liberal could at making the case for a Cheneyesque "dark side," and he isn't helped by Kline's wooden acting. Too bad. The Conspirator is eloquent enough to let the other side have its say.
  10. For all its calculation and manipulation, there's a very human movie somewhere within Marigold Hotel. You might just have to wade through a thousand clichés to get to it.
  11. A great deal of energy is expended on metaphysical ruminations that become ever fuzzier. The film is intended as an allegory, but it works best as a jailbreak romance. In this movie, lowbrow trumps highbrow every time.
  12. The prolific Patrice Leconte takes a break from mythic, life-and-death scenarios with My Best Friend, a sitcom that threatens to take a rockier emotional path before swerving back into the comfy zone. It’s better when it’s threatening, but Leconte knows his audience.
  13. Devos is especially fine as a woman whose inner solitude carries depth charges.
  14. Yes, I cringed at the casting, too, especially when, watching the trailer, I heard Parker deliver the narration in the same voice she used for Carrie in "Sex and the City." But Kate is funnier - less arch - than Carrie, and Parker reminds you what a dizzy, all-in, high-risk comic actress she can be when she's not too busy showing off the couture.
  15. Talk to Her affects some people very deeply, while others, like me, find it high-grade kitsch.
  16. For all its indirection, Meek's Cutoff is an utterly conventional film. But it's worth asking whether Reichardt's drowsy rhythms, stripped-down scenario, and female vantage add up to something illuminating. And here's where she earns at least some of those plaudits she's been getting.
  17. In the movie's best moment, an American sniper takes out a bad guy by a pier while a pair of hands reaches out of the water to grab the body so it doesn't make a splash and alert the other baddies.
  18. It's a sinuous, bittersweet odyssey, and although the filmmaking lacks finesse, the actors, especially Mandvi, with his bright, sorrowful beauty, and the great Om Puri, who plays Ganesh's father-in-law with an infernal crankiness, are always worth watching.
  19. The movie should be seen with a large, responsive audience--the better to live with it in the moment instead of worrying about where it’s going.
  20. The whole movie is a good try.
  21. A sentimental, feel-good look at a family in mourning, but Jake Gyllenhaal rises above the clichéd script with a brilliantly creative performance.
  22. The combination of childlike glee and grown-up precision is a wonder. The movie actually earns the right to exist, which is no mean feat.
  23. The pretty good thriller Lockout peaks with its first shot...When the camera moves and the plot kicks in - as it must - the movie loses its witty economy. Things get cluttered.
  24. Everything unfolds elegantly, understatedly. The movie is a Grisham in Le Carre clothing.
  25. Fortunately, most of the malarkey in this movie seems intentional in the same Sunday-afternoon-serial way as the Indiana Jones movies (some of which Johnston worked on).
  26. Sam Rockwell plays Barris with a hipster’s shimmy that’s creepily effective -- The problem with making a movie about a hollow man is that, when things start to get heavy, you’re stuck with nothingness at the core.
  27. If you can forget what it’s saying, Divergent is fairly entertaining.
  28. The Kings of Summer is far from original, but it’s also far stranger than it seems, in ways both good and bad.
  29. The best scene is when Hellboy and Abe get drunk and sing out raucously, which after "Hancock" suggests a trend toward superhero alcoholism.
  30. It would be easy to dismiss as 100 percent ersatz if it didn't rekindle at least some of the old excitement - and if the magic of Spielberg's older movies didn't filter through, like light from a distant galaxy.
  31. Though worth seeing, should be better than it is.
  32. This time around, Harry Potter has more to worry about than the Dark Arts -- though parts of The Chamber of Secrets are spellbinding, he seems to be suffering from a bit of sequelitis.
  33. It’s absorbing for a long while, at least half its two-hour running time — an evocatively photographed soap opera with actors who are impossibly gorgeous and yet human-looking — but it goes on and on, piling on twists, adding devices so clunky they’d have embarrassed most nineteenth-century problem-dramatists, refusing to jell despite the actors’ prodigious suffering.
  34. Despite its exuberant perversities, Waters’s take on erotomania is almost quaint.
  35. The new 9/11 movies aim to rekindle feelings that most of us have, by necessity, moved beyond. But there’s more than one way to move beyond, as suggested by the spottily affecting ensemble psycho-comedy The Great New Wonderful.
  36. Leconte films in an austere yet invigorated style; the action never settles into stiff tableaux.
  37. The first Allen picture since "Sweet and Lowdown" that doesn't leave a bad odor in its wake.
  38. The problem is that the film gets too wrapped up in the myth to tell an effective behind-the-scenes tale.
  39. Fry's saving grace is his love of actors. The younger and less familiar performers are more than adequate, but it's the older guard that shines. Broadbent is marvelously rummy.
  40. Now it feels almost quaint, like a throwback. You watch it and, despite all the au courant techno geekery on display, you feel like you’ve stepped into a time capsule. It’s a nice feeling at first. If only the movie were better.
  41. A frightening, infuriating, yet profoundly compassionate documentary about the indoctrination of children by the Evangelical right.
  42. Writer-director Billy Ray is so eager to be fair-minded about everything and everyone that you can't help thinking he's a patsy, too. If he directed a movie of Othello, he'd probably try to make us feel warm and fuzzy about poor, misunderstood Iago.
  43. Shyamalan wants to be the metaphysical poet of movies, but he's dangerously close to becoming its O. Henry. The best surprise ending he could give us in his next movie would be no surprise ending at all.
  44. The jumping around is as deft as a hippo in a tutu, and the director, Gavin Hood, never finds a rhythm.
  45. Frances Ha is an irritant when it lingers. When Baumbach’s touch is more glancing — when he cuts before the humiliation — it sings.
  46. Writer-director Andrew Niccol throws around a lot of intriguing ideas in this film, and even though his ambitions are more expansive than his talent, he's managed to come up with something that credibly resembles the shape of things to come, Hollywood-style.
  47. Watching Spike Lee’s decent but unmemorable remake of Park Chan-wook’s 2003 revenge picture "Oldboy," I kept trying to figure out why he’d done it.
  48. Pretty much the whole movie is a series of poses, static and uninvolving, except for cinematographer Eduardo Serra’s lighting, which makes everything look convincingly Vermeer-ish. I’d like to see what he could do with Rembrandt.
  49. It's an entertainingly cynical small movie. Aaron Sorkin's dialogue tumbles out so fast it's as if the characters want their brains to keep pace with their processors; they talk like they keyboard, like Fincher directs, with no time for niceties.
  50. As a result, Jarhead is utterly predictable (boys endure tough training; boys encounter another culture and are baffled), studded with first-rate performances.
  51. It's hard to know whether to marvel or weep when James Carville goes into his Bill Clinton–meets–Looney Tunes act in Rachel Boynton's knockout documentary Our Brand Is Crisis--the context is so morally topsy-turvy.
  52. Birdman is the very definition of a tour de force, and Iñárritu’s overheated technique meshes perfectly with the (enjoyable) overacting—the performers know this is a theatrical exercise and obviously relish the chance to Do It Big. But what comes out of the characters’ mouths is not so fresh.
  53. You can believe this man (Jones) left his family because he felt born into the wrong tribe. Now if only he had picked the right movie . . .
  54. The tasteless bombardment that is Les Misérables would, under most circumstances, send audiences screaming from the theater, but the film is going to be a monster hit and award winner, and not entirely unjustly.
  55. The movie does get under your skin (the tremulous misfit girl, Hannah, might be a breakout role model), but the way it has been put together reminds me of those animal shows where the crew nudges the gazelles in the direction of the lions with multiple cameras standing by.
  56. The best new addition to the corp is Alan Cumming’s Nightcrawler.
  57. A scantily clad revenge memoir.
  58. It might seem as though there is nothing new to be done with the crime thriller, but The Code (La Mentale), directed by Manuel Boursinhac and written by Bibi Naceri, provides a new twist.
  59. A Joyful Noise overcomes. The big numbers are a gospel-pop-funk fusion that made me think, Hmmm, this seems very processed - before I noticed my feet were tapping of their own accord. How can you resist that wah-wah funk guitar?
  60. Secretary is deeply conventional: Edward and Lee accept their bondage as the way to a more fulfilling life. It's the filmmakers who need to be spanked.
  61. The key to a good B-mystery is that all the actors should be a little stilted. You should never know the difference between an actor acting badly and an actor doing a masterful acting job of someone acting badly. In Non-Stop, there is much excellent bad acting.
  62. It also helps that they've got actresses like Gabrielle Union and Taraji P. Henson doing the heavy lifting of trying to show real emotion while still keeping things light and on the comedy track.
  63. The movie goes soft. But it has the unpretentious energy and charm of a good YA girls' novel.
  64. Efron's stopped-clock seriousness is more convincing on a melancholy loverboy than it is on a melancholy soldier. We can't quite sense the harrowing torment of lives lost before his eyes, but we can sense the sweet anguish of being around the woman you adore. It'll have to do.
  65. At its best, 22 Jump Street is less an action comedy than a loosely plotted revue, and though it’s not as witty as either Joe Dante’s "Gremlins 2: The New Batch" or Edgar Wright’s "Hot Fuzz" (in which the directors evinced genuine love for their chosen genres), it’s sure as hell better than a straight buddy-cop sequel.
  66. Still, it does eventually become a bit tedious, and for all the breathless kineticism of the film's second act, you may find yourself twiddling your thumbs. It's a cool game, to be sure, but watching someone else play it gets old after a while.
  67. It would be barely passable under normal circumstances, but in 3-D it's a circus of excellent FX.
  68. It's a rich idea -- a Hartley-esque variation on the theme of American Innocents Abroad. And it works superbly until -- well, Grim's the word.
  69. A lovely minor achievement. It would have been major if Breillat had been more expansive with respect to Anaïs instead of contentedly letting her go on about her lumpish ways.
  70. Taking Sides has a padded-out, stagebound quality that is anything but lyrical. And Szabó, a Hungarian best known for "Mephisto" and "Colonel Redl," is not at his best here.
  71. It’s fast, rousing, and blessedly brief.
  72. Despite the clunkiness, Estevez's commitment to his father's generation’s idealism (and its murder) commands respect.
  73. As cheap as the whole set-up is, the actors make wonderful music together - even if there's not much left of Eastwood's vocal cords except a handful of dust.
  74. She lip-syncs convincingly to Piaf's songs. Even when she overacts like mad, she makes you think she’s Piaf overacting like mad--the little sparrow with the foghorn pipes.
  75. The best part is Jemaine Clement as Benjamin’s grandiose genre hero, Dr. Ronald Chevalier. Even if you love him on "Flight of the Conchords," you’ll be unprepared for his genius--and charisma.
  76. 42
    Helgeland’s epic about Jackie Robinson’s first year in Major League Baseball is uneven — often exciting, and just as often shallow and ham-handed — but if there’s one thing to which it remains true, it's that the almighty American greenback and the all-American athlete are the great destroyers of bigotry.
  77. The movie isn't a dud: It has exuberant bits and breathtaking (money money money) effects. But it's supposed to be fun and inspirational, and it's too leaden for liftoff.
  78. But even with bits that are crazily inspired, Forgetting Sarah Marshall is depressing. The Apatow Factory is too comfy with its workers’ arrested development to move the boundary posts. If they could find scripts by female writers that dramatize the other side of the Great Sexual Divide, it might be a place of joy--and embarrassed recognition--for everyone.
  79. It’s the writer, Diablo Cody, and the director, Jason Reitman, who have screws loose. Or maybe they’re just desperate to make their film a chick "Rushmore" or "Garden State."
  80. The film is superbly acted (especially by Macdissi, who makes the father a borderline hysteric), but it's hard to know what to feel except, "How can any girl navigate this oversexualized culture?"
  81. The effect is a bit like watching "Gone With the Wind" with a dumpling substituting for Scarlett O’Hara.
  82. What saves it is Dennis Quaid.
  83. Baldwin is so good in the coming-of-age gangster drama Brooklyn Rules that it's like watching a voodoo priest.
  84. The Sitter feels slapdash and quick, but you might not want to have it any other way.
  85. Should be remembered for a pair of performers -- Derek Luke and Viola Davis, whose cameo as the mother who abandoned him cuts through the sap like an acetylene torch.
  86. It may not entirely work as a movie, but The Muppets shines as a piece of touching pop nostalgia.
  87. I’m not sure Morris clinches his case, but I’m not sure he wants to: His aim is to throw a monkey wrench into the cogs of our perception.
  88. A bit too satisfied with its own sweet sensitivities.
  89. Appropriately pulpy — fuss-free and fast.
  90. The problem might actually be (gasp) Michael Shannon himself — shocking, because he’s one of our greatest actors — who is only half-right for this film’s portrait of Kuklinski.
  91. Aside from yet another solid performance from Catherine Keener-playing a Harper Lee just preparing to publish "To Kill a Mockingbird," and here to act as Capote's unheeded moral conscience-that's the ONLY reason to see Capote.
  92. I think of Waitress as an overstuffed, overcooked pie--too ungainly to eat all of, too generous to pass up, too heartbreaking to contemplate for long.
  93. It's one of the weirdest achievements in film history: Temperamentally, Spielberg and Kubrick are such polar opposites that A.I. has the moment-to-moment effect of being completely at odds with itself.
  94. Attains a level of quiet grace. It's too bad that I can barely remember the movie after only a week. Nothing lasts, indeed.
  95. At least the movie never bogs down. But you only get a taste of what made the Clash for a brief period the most exciting band on that side of the Atlantic.
  96. Better approached as an “oooooh” and “awww” fest.
  97. Most of the movie works because the blonde Weixler has a darling-daffy face (a pinch of Alicia Silverstone, a dollop of Drew Barrymore) and a should-I-or-shouldn’t-I ambivalence about sex that’s part realism, part screwball.
  98. Miss Potter hardly deserves ridicule. It's sweet with lovely Lake District vistas and a heartfelt endorsement of land conservation. It will certainly play well with older audiences and the kind of adolescent girls who draw faces in their O's.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    An off-kilter thriller with a sad-sack hero.
  99. The film has one indelible asset: Mark Strong, who plays the Jordanian spymaster Hani. He's sleek and lounge-lizard sharp like a young Andy Garcia, and he could be bigger than Garcia. The Jordanian holds all the cards, and opposite two superstars, Strong is the only actor who holds the camera.

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