New York Magazine (Vulture)'s Scores

For 1,772 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 44% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 54% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 0.9 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 The Cove
Lowest review score: 0 She Hate Me
Score distribution:
1,772 movie reviews
  1. A comic-tragic-sentimental genre hodgepodge that wants to make you feel all the feelings amid all that action spectacle. It doesn’t entirely deliver, but at times you can’t help but admire its strangeness.
  2. While the imagery in this retelling is impeccable, the story is strangely lifeless.
  3. The best thing about the new 300: Rise of an Empire is that Zack Snyder didn’t direct it. And the worst thing about it is that Zack Snyder didn’t direct it.
  4. Based on the popular video games, this is a movie with breathtakingly visceral racing scenes, and they are matched by a breathtakingly, breathtakingly terrible script.
  5. The ultimate effect of this film, directed by actor Diego Luna, is curiously cold — it never transcends the hagiographic nature of its material, despite a talented cast and a compelling subject.
  6. If Cheap Thrills ultimately does carry us along, it’s due largely to Healy’s performance and presence. He’s a figure halfway between schlemiel and criminal, and the film effectively works that full range.
  7. Alan Partridge awkwardly tries to wed the episodic spirit of the character with the feature-length demands of a theatrical experience. The result is a mess, but it’s got some choice bits. Even if you forget the film itself, you might find yourself quoting parts of it for years.
  8. You wish Rio 2 had the smarts and the inventiveness to match its scattered bursts of ambition.
  9. Hateship Loveship is in no way a comedy, but Wiig's enormous presence threatens to make it so. She can't disappear into the void, so the drama onscreen becomes hard to take seriously.
  10. Transcendence never quite succeeds at telling a story of scientific overreach. And it doesn’t really click as an action movie either. But as a human tragedy of man and monster, of beauty and beast, it has just enough genuine pathos that you wish it were better.
  11. Blue Ruin is more artful and evocative than any recent revenge picture, but it’s still drivel.
  12. A montage-happy, occasionally unpleasant film that’s still strangely watchable, The Other Woman is almost saved by a cast that’s … well, likable isn’t quite the word.
  13. Bloated and often boring and has absolutely no reason to exist, but that it also hits its marks. No fanboy will pass it up. No studio head will lose his or her job.
  14. It’s not a bad film, exactly, but it’s a jumbled, uncertain one, and it never quite makes a compelling case for itself.
  15. The problem is that he — unlike most modern sci-fi directors, who throw so much CGI at you that they make miracles cheap — seems peculiarly stingy when it’s time to deliver.
  16. Transporting, well acted, and occasionally powerful. It’s also a rushed, maddening mess.
  17. Jolie’s commitment to the part is admirable: She gives this Maleficent a real emotional urgency. But the rest of the movie lets her down.
  18. Watching the movie is at once electrifying and maddening.
  19. You spend a lot of the movie confused, but the great big reveals of its finale don’t feel very shocking at all. Yet it’s not a complete wash and, given the circumstances, that feels like an accomplishment.
  20. To be fair, some of it is good, very good. Jersey Boys has an easy, likable gait. It’s Eastwood’s most fluid film: He gets the swing of the music without fancy editing.
  21. Mostly uninspired and insipid, but it rallies, and builds up enough comic steam by the end that you might find yourself amused.
  22. They make you wish Haggis would put away the Great Themes, the belabored dialogue, the forced narrative dynamics, and just figure out a way to scale down his scope and tell smaller stories. Maybe it’s not all as connected as he thinks.
  23. The sequel, Planes: Fire and Rescue, is still a DisneyToon production, but it does aim higher, with a visual zip that was lacking from the first. It is, in almost all respects, a better movie. It’s still not particularly good, though.
  24. Clean, pleasant, and thoroughly unremarkable. It passes the time, but with that cast and that director, it should have been so much more.
  25. It starts off with a flourish and winds up limp, like a rabbit pulled out of a hat that turns out to be dead.
  26. The film never quite reconciles the banality of this love triangle with its far more interesting depiction of the rest of these characters’ lives.
  27. Let’s Be Cops has its moments, but it in no way distinguishes itself.
  28. You wind up with a movie that plays like a low-rent "Logan’s Run" crossed with a UNICEF commercial.
  29. Life After Beth is a reasonably fun, medium-gory horror comedy that’s better before the innards hit the fan.
  30. The highest-gloss revenge porn imaginable. It’s hard to believe that so much visual elegance has been brought to bear on material so ugly, and yet the disjunction is intentional, and the film is all of a piece.
  31. The real-life story behind When the Game Stands Tall sounds amazing. But for all its exciting sports scenes, the movie version falls flat as drama.
  32. Anyone who has ever ended a relationship and taken long walks in the rain will relate, at least until the characters open their mouths.
  33. Somewhere in this mess, there might be a very good movie.
  34. Tusk is not a particularly good movie, but the vivid anxiety dream at its heart makes it one of the most personal films this writer-director has ever made.
  35. Has its fun moments, and the dialogue, some of which was surely improvised, has a natural flow. But Soderbergh suffocates everything with stylistics. Soderbergh is exploring his navel.
  36. A movie like Hart's War, for all its realistic trappings, is essentially escapism. And yet it inadvertently pushes the 9/11 button. The real world is going to intrude a lot this year at the movies. Better get used to it.
  37. On the reasonable assumption that no movie featuring an Elvis impersonator can be wholly bad, I was prepared for a high old time at 3000 Miles to Graceland, which exhibits a plenitude of Elvi. The exhibition does not last very long, however. Less than a third of the way through, the filmmakers jettison the premise and trash their own movie.
  38. Some of this stuff is uncomfortably close to minstrelsy. Bad Company closes on a patriotic note in a brief scene that pays heartfelt tribute to the terrorist-thwarting sacrifices of the CIA. Timing is everything, I guess.
  39. In the end, Powell thanks his doctor for sharing the journey, but audiences who sit through this zoologically daft back-to-nature clinker may feel far less charitable.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Devoured by its own mechanical ostentation, generates no emotional involvement, and has a smart-ass, infinitely less powerful ending than the original.
  40. Stoppard and his director, Michael Apted, must be aware of how dry their film is, because periodically they work in little thriller divertimenti -- car chases and such -- that only serve to point up how un-thrilling everything is.
  41. The thinness of the movie, which is what is intermittently enjoyable about it, is at odds with its sob-sister pretensions.
  42. An arty sleepwalk. Thornton has developed a style of acting that goes beyond minimal into the near nonexistent.
  43. The necklace in this movie was crafted by the elite London jewelers Asprey and Gerrard -- out of cubic-zirconium stones. That's just about perfect. The Affair of the Necklace is a cubic-zirconium epic.
  44. Twisted and outrageous but ultimately artificial. Albert Brooks did this art-reality thing a lot better years ago in "Real Life," his takeoff on PBS's "An American Family," and was sidesplitting besides.
  45. Together, Lopez and Caviezel make quite a pair. Sorrowful yet hip, they seem to be inventing a new mood: designer melancholia.
  46. There's not much here for a great actor to sink his teeth into once, let alone twice.
  47. As murderous amusements go, the film is mildly diverting, but it's like a faint facsimile of a Claude Chabrol film.
  48. Glenconner is such a class-conscious caricature that he doesn't need the filmmakers to do him in; he does a sterling job all by himself.
  49. Sets up a cast -- and then proceeds to knock them down like ducks in a shooting gallery.
  50. This unrated documentary, which contains no hard-core shots, could have used more hog and less hedge, if you catch my drift: When Jeremy drones on about his quest to be cast in mainstream movies, dullness sets in.
  51. Thank God for Barrymore: When Beverly's water breaks and she looks down at her feet and cries, "This is so gross," you know how good this actress can be, and how good this movie might have been.
  52. Another in a long line of middling movies for Travolta, who must have been so stunned to regain his stardom with "Pulp Fiction" that he hasn't stopped working since.
  53. This is low-grade satire. The shocks to the system in Buffalo Soldiers are nothing more than cheap thrills.
  54. The Coens have a true feeling for the sleek surfaces of the genre, but they don't connect with its sordid, sexy undercurrent; that's why Crane is made to seem so passive.
  55. A glossy, depthless melodrama.
  56. For all its triteness, Sheridan's sentimentality has its poignancy: This adolescent boy is all set up to live out a halcyon life he'll never have.
  57. Parker "opens up" a play that was perfectly wonderful closed down. Wilde subtitled his masterpiece "A Trivial Comedy for Serious People." This movie seems intent on being a trivial comedy for trivial people.
  58. Compounds the problems of its predecessor, "Analyze This," while duplicating almost none of its humor.
  59. Why do filmmakers persist in remaking films that were already great to begin with? Why not instead remake bad movies that had terrific premises?
  60. "In the Company of Men," "Your Friends & Neighbors," and "The Shape of Things," at least held you. Possession piddles away as you're watching it.
  61. People who see Sinbad for its star power--a big selling point in the movie’s marketing campaign--are being oversold.
  62. Life imitates art, except there’s precious little of either here.
  63. I wish Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone had developed more of a life of its own instead of being essentially a flat visualization of the book.
  64. Brody doesn’t deserve this movie.
  65. It’s all strenuously camp.
  66. Schrader really isn't interested in Crane except as the straw man for his moral lessons about sin and sexuality and the nature of celebrity. Auto Focus is the perfect capper to Crane's career: Even in a movie about himself, he remains minor.
  67. Lynch needs to renew himself with an influx of the deep feeling he has for people, for outcasts, and lay off the cretins and hobgoblins and zombies for a while. Mulholland Drive is the product of David Lynch, Inc.
  68. Driven is recommended only to those gentle souls who want to know what it looks like to crash into a wall at 200 mph.
  69. Williams once knew how to be very still and yet allow us to see the plangent human being underneath. In One Hour Photo, Sy's scary ordinariness is a species of acting stunt. There's no there there.
  70. I found myself staring at his new one, In Praise of Love (Éloge de l'Amour), in a state of rapt annoyance and befuddlement. It's constructed in two sections, which are far more fractured and opaque than the simple description I will here try to set out.
  71. As the cowboy-hatted wild man who cooks up speed in his motel-room lab, Rourke, who looks at home in his tattoos, is mesmerizingly grungy. He strikes a rare note of authenticity in this otherwise phony fandango.
  72. It's difficult to work up a strong case of the heebie-jeebies when you keep getting thrown out of the movie by all the atrocious acting.
  73. The problem with all this don't-blink-or-you'll-miss-it dramaturgy is that ultimately everything is sacrificed for effect. When you're dealing, as Ritchie is, with explosions of real violence and viciousness, the hyperslick technique can't accommodate the real pain that comes with the territory, or ought to. What we're left with is a cackling amorality -- not a philosophy of life, just a posture.
  74. O'Sullivan's movie could easily have been made 60 years ago. This is not intended as a compliment.
  75. Spirit's narration comes to us courtesy of Matt Damon, who, having played a horse's ass in some of his earlier movies, perhaps thought it wise to inhabit the entire nag this time around.
  76. It's like being trapped inside a fever dream of Oscar-night production numbers.
  77. Mamet is so in love with the con that he's conned himself.
  78. Director Barbet Schroeder is too elegant an artist for this material, which veers between routine cop-movie conventions and high-toned malarkey that seems a lot closer to Dungeons & Dragons than to "Thus Spoke Zarathustra."
  79. Resembles a full-length promo for itself. The action, virtually nonstop, is a series of can-you-top-this? set pieces.
  80. Although that pairing (Martin/Latifah) alone may be enough to make this movie a hit, the material is thin and pandering and almost criminally negligent in bypassing opportunities for humor.
  81. With Joe Johnston directing instead of Spielberg, who executive-produces, and a scrum of screenwriters, none named Crichton, the franchise suffers some negligence.
  82. The only saving grace is that Caine and Duvall don’t overdo the southern-coot stuff.
  83. The cast…is first-rate, but each is given a single note to play.
  84. A weepie for audiences under the (mistaken) impression that independent movies are always more emotionally honest than Hollywood movies.
  85. Campion is dabbling in several different types of movie here: police procedural, film noir, romantic melodrama, sex fantasia. None really succeeds.
  86. This final installment jettisons most of the Zen mumbo-jumbo from the first two movies in favor of lots of very loud explosions. Since I didn’t take the mumbo-jumbo seriously to begin with, my letdown was minor, but aficionados may feel like they’ve been played for suckers.
  87. Director Mike Newell and screenwriters Lawrence Konner and Mark Rosenthal should have uncorseted their own imaginations. The girls on display are all tightly stereotyped.
  88. It isn't just the violence that is overplayed. There is so much creepy-Gothic Sturm und Drang in The Passion that at times it seems as if Clive Barker should get credit for the story along with Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
  89. It’s tough to be Tracy and Hepburn, let alone Doris Day and Rock Hudson, when you're trying to get your mouth around lines that wouldn't pass muster on a UPN sitcom.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 40 Critic Score
    Palmetto is an unconvincing, paint-by-numbers pass at American noir by the usually ambitious German director Volker Schlondorff (The Tin Drum).
  90. The film is a stodgy snooze, and Theron, who is about as expressive here as a porcelain doll, lacks all believability--she's followed her best performance (in Monster) with her worst.
  91. Maudlin.
  92. The empathy never lifts off -- never becomes poetry. It doesn't help that Leigh indulges his unfortunate habit of larding the soundtrack with draggy, mournful music, heavy on the cello.
  93. Beresford, can't bring this saga to life because Alma herself never fully comes to life; her contradictoriness, like the way she embraces Mahler only to rail against his "Jewish music," doesn't add up to a whole and complex human being.
  94. A hapless comedy that already seems about ten years out of date, Be Cool is a curious failure.
  95. The time shifts are awkward, and Egoyan displays little of the deftness of characterization he evinced in such movies as "Exotica" (1994) and "The Sweet Hereafter" (1997); the result is a cold scold of a movie.
  96. Steve Martin can be a delightfully spasmodic clown, but his Clouseau makes no sense.
  97. Yet another remake no one needs is The Omen.
  98. Stagedoor features unremarkable rehearsal footage (exhibitionists make poor subjects for vérité documentaries) and thoughtful but unsurprising interviews with camp counselors and parents.

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