New York Magazine (Vulture)'s Scores

For 1,872 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 Happy Feet
Lowest review score: 0 Funny Games (2008)
Score distribution:
1,872 movie reviews
  1. My kind of Christmas movie--profane, subversive, and swarming with scuzzballs.
  2. The poetic Swedish vampire picture (with arterial spray) "Let the Right One In" has been hauntingly well transplanted to the high desert of Los Alamos, New Mexico, and renamed Let Me In.
  3. Audiences for this film should have no such qualms: When the camel lolls his jaws at dinnertime, or sways his Bactrian bulk, you may decide you've never seen anything quite so hilarious -- or magnificent.
  4. However cheeky and blasphemous, this is, at heart, a rather sweet little fable. Which of course would mean nothing if it weren’t explosively funny.
  5. Sensationally effective.
  6. When superb craftsmanship, discipline, and risk-taking (toning down Diaz and MacLaine; treating Collette as a desirous leading lady) are applied to accessible, even frivolous material, the results can be deeply pleasurable. In Her Shoes isn’t a masterpiece, but it’s the best Saturday-night movie millions of people are going to go to.
  7. The most blessedly traditional sort of documentary. It follows the twisty, complicated rise and fall of Enron in steady, chronological order, from the mid-eighties to the present.
  8. As both men lie to loved ones to keep their exchange alive, the tension builds and becomes unbearable.
  9. It's the perfect moment for the ridiculous but riotously enjoyable revolutionary comic-book thriller V for Vendetta-which will doubtless outrage conservatives and unnerve fuddy-duddys but liberate the rest of us with its magisterial irresponsibility.
  10. At times it's plodding and inchoate, but there's certainly nothing else like it in the movies right now, and it has at least one great sequence.
  11. It's one of the best kinds of documentaries--not calculated but serendipitous.
  12. The first two thirds and change of I Am Legend is terrific mindless fun: crackerjack action with gnashing vampires barely glimpsed (and scarier for that) and how’d-they-do-that New York locations that retroactively justify the traffic jams.
  13. Certainly for any fan of Cave’s, 20,000 Days on Earth makes for a creative, enthralling journey through the man’s world.
  14. This vital documentary gives you a world of hurt, prescribes nothing, and calls the ultimate questions you can ask as an American.
  15. A hell of a picture. And shrewd.
  16. Creepily evocative.
  17. Like Someone in Love has rather simple, sentimental, melodramatic underpinnings, but the vantage changes everything. It opens up this world — and the next. It’s an enthralling journey.
  18. Much more kid-oriented than any other computer-animated movie thus far. In other words, it's much more Disneyish. I enjoyed it.
  19. Sicko is Moore’s best film: a documentary that mixes outrage, hope, and gonzo stunts in the right proportions; that poses profound questions about the connection between health care and work.
  20. Moving Midway is thrilling.
  21. Brown explores a potentially enraging subject--rigidly upheld racial segregation in the country's oldest Mardi Gras celebration, in Mobile, Alabama--but her touch is so unforced and her gaze so open that no one is bruised.
  22. Westfeldt, now 42, belongs to a generation (and class) of people for whom nothing about having kids is easy. Her intensity feels just right - better than in any film I've seen in years - for How We Breed Now.
  23. In the end, What If belongs to Zoe Kazan. And both she and it are wonderful.
  24. They’re great stories, and it’s through them that Jodorowsky’s Dune shows us how the greatest movie never made, in its own crazy little way, somehow still came to be.
  25. Premium Rush is that rare bird: a chase picture that's just a chase picture - and a dandy one.
  26. It’s a hyper-aestheticized meditation on the meaning of history, visually astonishing, dramatically stilted. No masterpiece, but quite a feat (and quite effete).
  27. Save the Date works best when it's getting under your skin, and it does that when it's capturing the queasy halfway point - part sadistic, part bittersweet - of still loving somebody while trying to move on to someone new. It's a kind of subtlety that movies, especially American movies, rarely do well, but this quietly unassuming, secretly brilliant little charmer nails it.
  28. A sci-fi saga that manages to be at once stirring and screwball, gut-busting and gut-wrenching, and more fun than you had at any bigger-budget movie this past summer.
  29. By all odds, Tarnation should have been an unwatchable, masochistic morass, but Caouette's love for the broken Renee--which is the true subject of the film--is awe-inspiring.
  30. [A] haunting, beautiful movie.
  31. Philippe Claudel's direction is both probing and delicate, and Scott Thomas's face, even immobile, keeps you watching, searching for hints of her character's past, unable to blink for fear of missing something vital.
  32. Gloria doesn’t lie about a woman’s dwindling options. It’s rife with disappointment and humiliation. But bleakness does not preclude buoyancy. It still manages to leave you with the urge to dance.
  33. The Korean director im Kwon-Taek has made more than 90 films since his first in 1962, and perhaps this explains why his latest, Chunhyang, seems so effortless and masterly. Based on a highly popular eighteenth-century Korean folktale, it's a movie that, stylistically, mixes the traditional with the avant-garde; the narrative may be ritualistic, but there's a let's-try-it-on-for-size friskiness to the filmmaking.
  34. There's nothing in David Ayer's cop drama End of Watch that you haven't already seen, but the film has moments so riveting that you might not care too much.
  35. My Winnipeg is overloaded and digressive--it comes with the territory--but it's also grounded in a place, Maddin's Manitoban hometown, and it's painfully engrossing.
  36. The actors playing parents and spouses (among them Steve Buscemi, Halley Feiffer, Portia, and Kevin Hagan) are stunningly believable. I'm not sure how Morton made sense of her character's ebbs and flows, but I never doubted her. She's a mariner in uncharted seas of emotion.
  37. What a mind-bending odyssey ensues--a tale of good old-fashioned American free expression at war with good old-fashioned American capitalism.
  38. You can't make this stuff up. You can, however, capture it on film for all time. Trouble the Water is ineradicably moving.
  39. Exposed, abandoned, branded as traitors, the Wilsons finally have no choice but to tell their story, the latest chapter of which is this potent Hollywood melodrama.
  40. Fortunately, it never dips into bathos. These two actors SHOULD be noticed. They've crafted the most ingenious résumé of the year.
  41. Paddington is decidedly, proudly unhip. It’s a lovely, endearing chocolate-box of a movie.
  42. Le Week-End is a marital ­disintegration–reintegration drama that opens with a dose of frost and vinegar and turns believably sweet—and unbelievably marvelous, in light of what had seemed a depressing trajectory.
  43. Hedges keeps everything in balance: The sadness and frivolity all seem to be part of the same emotional continuum. He’s made a lingeringly poignant little movie.
  44. The cutting is hyperkinetic, yet Lee is always in synch with the cast’s phenomenal energy. He’s in their thrall--and so are we.
  45. Operates as stealth art: stately, moving, beautifully acted, and urgently subversive to our own status quo.
  46. Romantic comedies involving people moving on after divorce are a dime a dozen, but rarely are they as generous, sharply observed, and humane as Angus MacLachlan’s Goodbye to All That.
  47. Django Unchained doesn't merely hit its marks; it blows them to bloody chunks. It's manna for mayhem mavens.
  48. It's so money! It's so fun!
  49. An elaborate techno-heist thriller, The Italian Job features some spectacular chase scenes, but for a change, the people doing the chasing are also worth watching.
  50. What she (Ullmann) does achieve is a couple of scenes of lacerating power.
  51. Still, in its own Saturday-morning-serial kind of way, Attack of the Clones is a commendable example of the sort of movie we once loved and then outgrew. Of course, if it was even better, we wouldn't feel as if we'd outgrown it.
  52. It elevates female sacrifice into an aesthetic. The movie isn't about suffering, really. It's about how you look when you suffer, how you dress up for it. Style is all.
  53. Salles hasn't reinvented On the Road, but rather turned it into a rambling, beautiful, and occasionally even heartbreaking museum piece.
  54. If Timbuktu has a “takeaway,” it’s a deeply humanist one and so, in this context, political: that there’s no such thing as a monolithic Muslim culture; that the threat is nowhere near as great to Westerners as to the people of Mali, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, etc.; that ideology is deaf and blind and anti-life; and that cinema (and all art) can blow it to what I’d once have called Timbuktu.
  55. It’s an unshowy, quietly intense drama with grace notes in every scene — and a hellish punch.
  56. Narrated by Rhys Ifans with the dryness of a dessicated toad, Exit Through the Gift Shop is both an exhilarating testament to serendipity and an appalling testament to art-world inanity.
  57. The actors are in a nice place--poking fun at themselves without spilling into travesty. Fogged by self-absorption, Coogan makes you like him most when he's most dislikable; he has a fool's vulnerability.
  58. The Dardennes' most accessible film. Their handheld camera catches tiny flickers of emotion that few filmmakers come near; you feel as if you're watching the movements of a soul.
  59. A meticulous, thoroughly engrossing lesson in how not to win friends (or wars) and influence people (or potential terrorists).
  60. Marvelously funny.
  61. Dope isn’t perfect — it’s got a couple too many endings, and it loses the romantic subplot for a distressingly long time. But it moves with amazing energy, the dialogue and soundtrack and imagery a constant stream of pop-culture references, in-jokes, and digressions.
  62. Half-amazing, half-ridiculous, thoroughly exhilarating.
  63. The mystery of the artistic process is left mysterious -- as it should be.
  64. The hotel scenes go on a tad long, but what holds us is that we’re right in the room as history is being made — with the guy, the actual guy, soon to be notorious all over the world.
  65. The Afghan boys’ kite-flying contests are the emotional core of the film, and Forster and his crew bring the camera into the sky and make it dip and soar along with the kites. It’s a thrilling spectacle, although it’s also tinged with a peculiarly emasculating aggression.
  66. It all adds up to a searing portrait of social misery.
  67. It’s the equal of "No End in Sight" in its tight focus on the nuts and bolts of incompetence, and it surpasses any recent melodrama in the empathy it evokes for both its victims and--surprisingly--victimizers.
  68. Anton Chekhov's The Duel is convincingly-yes--Chekhovian.
  69. Crosses the blood-brain barrier like … like … whatever the drug is, I haven't tried it, thank God. The movie eats into your mind - ­slowly.
  70. It's also breathtaking to watch a throwaway studio sequel break its corporate chains before your very eyes and become something thrilling and dangerous and alive.
  71. Most teen movies are cocktails of melancholy and elation. This one is best at its most un-transcendent —when it most evokes that period when we never knew what we were supposed to do with the pain.
  72. Downbeat as it is, Half Nelson is a genuinely inspirational film--a terrifically compelling character study and a tricky exploration of the links (and busted links) between the personal and the political.
  73. Against a radiant backdrop of decay and rebirth, nothing needs to be said; everything in this lovely film is crystalline.
  74. It's a genuine genre vampire picture; and it's Swedish, winter-lit, Bergmanesque.
  75. This sensationally engineered promo film makes Justin Bieber look like a true force of nature.
  76. Gabe Polsky's ingenious, touching documentary Red Army looks at the other side of this myth, the seemingly faceless, allegedly robotic players who made up the Soviet team. There, Polsky finds a story even more epic and powerful than the Miracle on Ice.
  77. The film is saying that, left to their own devices, all men would devolve into a morass of monastic grouches. Kitchen Stories is a prime piece of comic anthropology.
  78. I was utterly gripped by The Italian. The only problem is that I was rooting for the bad guys.
  79. Has a poignant undertone: We may feel we already know in our bones just how suffocating this culture is; but the people who made this movie seem to be discovering each fresh horror for the first time. It's like watching a virgin sacrifice.
  80. It's a frisky, funny roundelay starring Stefania Sandrelli, and it features enough shouting and arm-waving to power a windmill.
  81. Apocalypto turns into the best "Rambo" movie ever made. The worrisome part is that Gibson doesn't think he's making a boneheaded action picture. For him, torture and vengeance are the way of the world. This is Gibsonian metaphysics.
  82. A sense of unease, of incompleteness, is, I think, the appropriate response to this movie. Instead of trying to fill in the blanks, Curran and Gross leave things open and ambiguous. Just like life.
  83. Scattershot but rousing documentary.
  84. A part with this much sobbing, hand-wringing, and mournful gazing into the middle distance could be, in the wrong hands, a laugh riot, but Lawrence’s instincts are so smart that she never goes even a shade overboard. She’s a hell of an actress.
  85. This Bond is haunted, not yet housebroken, still figuring out the persona. In Casino Royale, the reset button has been pressed in the manner of "Batman Begins."
  86. As the political rhetoric between Washington and Tehran becomes dangerously overheated, Offside offers an intimate antidote: an affectionate glimpse into the cultural schisms that young Tehranis face every day. Western audiences will cheer the rebellious girls on.
  87. Ought to have been an eye-roller. What a surprise that it's so seductive. The Woodman lives!
  88. For all the limitations of its setting and palette, this is a gorgeous, visually exciting movie.
  89. For my money, Flags (however clunky) cuts more deeply, but Letters is more difficult to shake off. Together, they leave you with the feeling that even a just and necessary war is an abomination.
  90. Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels is in the scabrous mode, and I like it better than "Trainspotting" -- it doesn't pretend its shenanigans are revolutionary.
  91. If Penn really lets these actors sing, his watchful camera also knows how to respect their silences.
  92. It's Lawrence who knocked me sideways. I loved her in "Winter's Bone" and "The Hunger Games" but she's very young - I didn't think she had this kind of deep-toned, layered weirdness in her.
  93. The final twist is both baffling and repulsive, but as an evocation of the triumph of evil, it's peerless.
  94. Although Paltrow is radiant (and she nails the character’s ditzy sense of entitlement), it's Phoenix's movie. He is, once again, stupendous, and stupendous in a way he has never been before.
  95. Each film in Nicolas Winding Refn's mesmerizingly brutal Pusher trilogy can stand on its own, but it's fun to see all three and observe the way the bad guys in one become the sympathetic heroes (or anti-heroes) in another.
  96. It’s a bracing antidote to the usual “Beautiful Mind”–style Hollywoodization of mental illness.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    An expertly woven narrative, as nail-bitingly effective as any good Hollywood thriller.
  97. Sylvie Testud gives such a ferociously controlled performance that the messy murder seems like a necessary release.
    • 83 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    The best movie ever made about a man of God -- which is to say, the most honest and morally the most ambiguous.
  98. Delightful, insightful documentary.

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