New York Magazine (Vulture)'s Scores

For 2,096 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 52% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 1.1 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 63
Highest review score: 100 Waltz with Bashir
Lowest review score: 0 Funny Games (2008)
Score distribution:
2,096 movie reviews
  1. Potent enough to make me wish it were less clunky. It certainly won’t convert the jingoist fighting keyboardists, who probably won’t care that the president at the time the film is set — 2010 — is Obama, under whose watch the use of warrior drones has escalated exponentially. For them, Dick Cheney’s “dark side” still shines brightly.
  2. Despicable Me 2 does have plenty of what made the first film so entertaining — its wedding of James Bond–like gadgetry and visual invention with goofy slapstick, and the dizzying fun had with shrink rays, piranha guns, elaborate evil spaceships, and the like.
  3. Beyond the Mafia-like code of silence, it comes down to this: The guys at the top reserved their compassion for priests like Father Murphy in the belief that the boys were young and would get over it. No one of true faith will get over Maxima Mea Culpa.
  4. More often than not, Moore goes for the guffaw, and as enjoyable as that can be, it falls short of producing the kind of devastating, in-depth analysis that might really challenge the hearts and minds of ALL audiences, left and right. At the very least, this approach undercuts the effectiveness of Moore’s own case.
  5. Hoffman has his specialty, though, and it’s not inappropriate here: He always looks supersmart and yet his reactions to what goes on around him are superslow.
  6. Thor: The Dark World gets a lot more entertaining in the second hour, when the shape-shifting Loki is sprung from his cell (for complicated reasons) and immediately begins trading bitchy insults with his forthright, manly brother.
  7. Stunning, and it has the added bonus of being about an era that is virtually new to movies. As a dramatic achievement, however, it is not quite so amazing.
  8. A kind of psychological whodunit, but without the thrills. The clue-making is rather desultory, as if Cronenberg were indulging a narrative strategy he didn’t really care for.
  9. Complicated thriller that gets more interesting as its complications pile up.
  10. So how's the Mamet "Rocky"? Fast. Lively. In your face. Very watchable. And, like its predecessors, so bizarrely convoluted it barely holds together on a narrative level. But the underpinnings are consistent.
  11. What hallucinogen was Turturro on when he came up with this plot? It’s so crazy that it’s … fun.
  12. This underdeveloped romance seems to be lacking an act, or two, or maybe even three. But it’s filled with such great music that the emotions are there regardless. Not unlike "Once," the movie itself feels like an excuse for the music. And as with "Once," that’s not always a bad thing.
  13. I'm all for films that don't flow from the usual Hollywood test tubes, but A Civil Action is basically the standard formula with a dash of downbeat.
  14. What Now? Remind Me is all over the place, but it never feels messy or lax.
  15. The Grand is a seesaw, but the setting--the high-stakes poker subculture--is remarkably fertile and the actors are a treat.
  16. Miguel Arteta’s rollicking Youth in Revolt is one of several recent movies to elevate the generic coming-of-age teen sex comedy to a plane of surrealism.
  17. It’s so smart, so winsome, so utterly rejuvenating that you’ll have to wait until your eyes have dried and your buzz has worn off before you can begin to argue with it. And you should argue with it — even if you had a blast, as I did, and want to see it again with the kids, as I do — because it’s a major pop-culture statement with all sorts of implications, both vital and nutty.
  18. As Ain’t Them Bodies Saints moves along, its elliptical approach to drama goes from keeping us on our toes to dulling everything down.
  19. Max
    Noah Taylor does startlingly well by this role, but the conceit behind the film is a bizarre piece of wish-fulfillment.
  20. The chronology is confusing at times, but the film is never not fascinating.
  21. Entertaining documentary.
  22. But the question hangs: Does this artificial, three-hankie scenario justify its 9/11 appropriations? Dry your eyes and decide for yourself.
  23. I doubt many things — almost everything, to be frank — but I have no doubt that my Heaven Is for Real audience slept better that night. Whatever works.
  24. The talented writer-director Scott Frank comes awfully close in his adaptation of one of Block’s better novels, A Walk Among the Tombstones. I’d be way more enthusiastic if Frank hadn’t swapped out the book’s horrific, unforgettable ending for something so conventional, I can barely remember it a few days later.
  25. Cameron Crowe is a romantic bordering on utopian, and his authentic family values - biological and surrogate - shine through in his enchanting We Bought a Zoo.
  26. On the whole, this is a good B-movie that hits it modest marks.
  27. It left me bemused instead of moved, but true Andersonites will likely float away in a state of nirvana.
  28. The movie version of Goosebumps replicates that balancing act. It’s a cheerful, nasty delight.
  29. An ungainly, intermittently harrowing omnibus filled with moments of piercing sorrow and rage.
  30. As a technical achievement, K-19 is right up there with Das Boot. Don't expect much dramatic depth, though. The fathoms descended in this movie are strictly nautical.
  31. It doesn’t come close to the emotional heft of those two rare 2s that outclassed their ones: Superman 2 and Spider-Man 2. But Iron Man 2 hums along quite nicely.
  32. A jaw-dropper: a delirium-inducing crash course in international trash.
  33. Not every sight gag works, and there's a brief stretch in the middle where the action becomes landlocked. But once we're out to sea the movie goes swimmingly--its three protagonists fighting, flailing, and often on the verge of drowning as their tiny skiff surges toward the land of the Inuit.
  34. Howard A. Rodman's script has a lot of juice, and the rhythms are so pregnant that the air vibrates with something, even if you're not sure what.
  35. Like his "Wendigo," the film has a lot of mumbo jumbo about ancient spirits revived and angered by human disrespect--the old Indian-graveyard paradigm, as clunky as ever. But the context is overpoweringly eerie.
  36. Hyams's film, which may at first seem like a glorified VOD entry in a forgotten franchise starring has-been action stars, is an admirably tense sci-fi/horror adventure that somehow turns its considerable limitations into virtues.
  37. The best thing in Gilroy's "Michael Clayton" was the final scene between George Clooney and Tilda Swinton, the one in which the vise tightened click by click on Tilda. This is another vice-tightening sequence, but scary instead of triumphant, and with a long and explosive punch line. Finally, a sequence we can follow! After this, Gilroy owns us.
  38. Scene after scene rockets past dumb, past camp, past Kabuki, and into the Milky Way of Silly where laws can be made up and discarded as long as what happens gets laughs.
  39. It's deftly calibrated and acted with relish: Kasdan is really good!
  40. This is a film made by a wiser man who recognizes that everybody's looking for salvation in their own way. In the end, as the camera revisits the cast of broken, fallen characters, we may realize that Red Hook, as far as Spike Lee is concerned, is a state of mind.
  41. Hideously depressing but also enraging documentary.
  42. It's still possible to have a good time at this movie, and the primary reason is De Niro.
  43. The result is that rare Hollywood genre film that earns its intensity rather than forcing it upon you.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    This entertaining but rather peculiar movie asks extraordinary questions, and I wish it were better equipped to give the answers.
  44. Delpy may be starting to channel Woody Allen's directorial skills, but Rock has fully appropriated the Woodman's barbed comic anger.
    • 79 Metascore
    • 70 Critic Score
    It's a new Neeson as Dr. Alfred Kinsey, all spiky-haired and harried, and he's enormously appealing in the role.
  45. Kargman is light on her feet, and she has chosen to follow a fascinating group of kids preparing for the 2010 Youth America Grand Prix.
  46. Has William Hurt ever been this perfectly cast? He uses his groggy self-importance to make the pastor the victim of evil and the very fount of it.
  47. The Village is a better movie (than Signs) --probably his best since "The Sixth Sense"--but it indulges Shyamalan's penchant for messianic uplift.
  48. Venus is worth seeing for the scenes between O’Toole and Vanessa Redgrave as the woman he abandoned--the mother of his children.
  49. It’s a graceful, engaging film — I enjoyed it. But it could have been called "The Tasteful Dozen."
  50. Mamet doesn't take the material as far as it can go -- we're left with a pleasing fable about the battle of the sexes and the virtues of persistence in a just cause. The neatness of it all is both appealing and appalling, and perhaps this combo is what finally hooked Mamet.
  51. The Incredible Hulk is weightless--as disposable as an Xbox game. It's also fairly entertaining: swift, playful without pitching into camp, and acted with high spirits.
  52. It has a bad, slapstick first act but by midpoint becomes strangely compelling, tapping into the fantasy of reliving one's high-school years (which did a number on us all) and getting it right.
  53. Koreeda's compositions have a sympathetic detachment that Americans rarely value but is, for many Japanese, the whole point of art. That means you can contemplate the wonder in these glowing young faces without feeling as if you're on an intravenous drip of corn syrup.
  54. Furious 7 kicks the biggest and hardest, but it’s far from the best. Lin has handed the keys to James Wan, the cunning horror director of "Saw" and "The Conjuring," and though the thrill isn’t gone, the finesse is.
  55. It shows us things — obscene and hilarious, yes, but also just as often harrowing and unforgettable — we never thought we’d see. It’s ridiculous, but it has a ragged nobility all its own.
  56. The Murmelstein interview didn’t make it into Shoah, and Lanzmann sat on it, saying in a written prologue that he finally decided he had “no right to keep it to himself.” I wish he’d brought it out in Murmelstein’s lifetime. (The rabbi died in 1989.) He deserved the chance to be heard by the people who hated him most — who probably still would hate him but come away with ­respect.
  57. Dragon 2 is at its best when it quiets down and dares to be intimate.
  58. In Bloom feels, more than anything else, like a war movie.
  59. What makes An Unreasonable Man so compelling is its perfectly fluid line. Simply put, the private Nader and the public Nader are the same: There are no contradictions with which to grapple, no byways to explore.
  60. As much as its premise may sound like the start of a bad joke, Peter Ramsey's movie preserves just enough genuine childhood wonder in its whooshing, high-tech theatrics to make it a delight.
  61. Milk is one of the most heartfelt portraits of a politician ever made--the man himself remains just out of reach.
  62. Most of The Dead Lands, in fact, adheres to a fairly simple action film template. But the dynamic between the characters works because Fraser keeps it tough.
  63. It’s probably no great loss, but here and elsewhere the seams show. And in this sort of movie it’s often more fun before we get our bearings and have time to say, “This makes no sense.”
  64. The director seems to be drawing a line from the horror of the war years to the infantilism of the Boomers and rock; the father lost his innocence, and the son froze his.
  65. As a onetime dramaturg and Brechtian, I enjoyed the chin-wags and the glimpses of Streep in rehearsal--especially her quivering admission that she can't bear the thought of anyone seeing her process.
  66. Kick-Ass is a compendium of all sleazy things, and it sings like a siren to our inner Tarantinos.
  67. Dredd 3-D places you firmly in an unreal, dreamlike world and rouses you with its unexpected grace and its rhythms and its movement. The plot ceases to matter after a certain point: This is a great big beautiful music video, and there's nothing really wrong with that.
  68. I was happy watching these actors, happy going behind the scenes of a sober classical music ensemble instead of another druggy rock group, happy hearing Beethoven for a couple of hours. The movie is haut-bourgeois to the bone, but so am I: Let's hear some chamber music and have a little laugh and a cry!
  69. A loose-limbed documentary about the hip-hop D.J. scene that, for know-nothings like me, is highly informative without being in the least academic.
  70. Van Warmerdam has a way with images that are both playful and horrific, and you may find yourself chuckling at Borgman as much as you recoil at it. It’s destined for cult status.
  71. It’s overbaked art-pulp. You’re always thinking, What fresh horror is around the next bend?
  72. In this otherwise rather schematic swatch of social catharsis, Brazil's Fernanda Montenegro gives the best performance by an actress I've seen all year.
  73. Rust and Bone doesn't come together, but it's a triumph of non-actorish acting.
  74. If Amy Pascal loses her job over this, it will be an outrage. The only thing about which we disagree is The Interview. She hated it; I think it’s a blast.
  75. It’s not just vérité--it’s battlefield vérité; it triggers your fight-or-flight instincts.
  76. As much of her (Steen) as there is, you'll want more.
  77. Wahlberg grows into the part. He may not be right as a precocious, self-loathing intellectual, but he's very much at home playing a dickhead who's gotten in too deep. And as The Gambler becomes less about its protagonist’s dashed intellectualism and more about the gathering danger of his predicament, the film gains power.
  78. The film has weight in ways that you don't quite expect. Or maybe it's just Scott's subdued, slow-burn performance, which may have intended to convey stupidity but actually helps create an overall mood of convincing despair.
  79. It has vivid characters, a strong sense of place, and a free-floating hopelessness that never precludes the possibility of meaningful action.
  80. It isn’t much of a movie (unless your aesthetic was formed in high-school science class), but it will be hugely informative to aliens who land on this planet in a thousand years and wonder why there’s no welcoming committee.
  81. There are no bad guys, and no real violence. Horror fiends looking for cheap thrills may be disappointed. But those with a flair for the offbeat might find themselves unnerved and riveted.
  82. The movie's evolution from somber spiritual torment to icky body horror to fetishistic sex to wild lyricism (vampires pogoing off buildings) to Grand Guignol splatter is exhilarating.
  83. The stage is set for a wonderful movie, and yet The Luzhin Defence, based on the Vladimir Nabokov novel The Defense, never courts greatness.
  84. It's a pure (guilty) pleasure trip. That's pleasure, De Palma–style -- twisted, dirty, voyeuristic, a vast glissando of amorality.
  85. He's [Pitt] not particularly inventive - with his appraising eyes and a toothpick in his mouth, he's like Redford without the edge - but he uses his stardom cannily, to kill with softness.
  86. Taken--in the hands of director Pierre Morel (District B13), with Neeson in nearly every shot--works like gangbusters. The Frenchies have made the filet mignon of meathead vigilante movies.
  87. Rufus Norris’s debut film, Broken, is a fractured, tonally scrambled British coming-of-age movie with flashes of greatness and an intensely felt performance by a young actress named Eloise Laurence.
  88. Sleeping With Other People is a rare American non-homogenized rom-com, and it’s delightful even when you’re not sure what you’re watching.
  89. Pacino in low doses can be fulsome, and this is 10,000 cc’s of super-concentrated Al and his patented air of electrified stuporousness — which means it’s always on the border between thrilling and insufferable.
  90. Niceness also takes the edge off Patrick Creadon's otherwise revitalizing documentary.
  91. Great on atmosphere and less good on everything else. That’s not entirely a knock.
  92. A glancing, disjointed little movie that captures as well as any film I've seen the mind-expanding mojo of rock and roll at the dawn of the counterculture - particularly rhythm-and-blues-oriented rock, particularly the Rolling Stones, the group that synthesized R&B and made it commercial.
  93. Captain Jean-Luc Picard would be enough for one lifetime, but given that Sir Patrick is now living out an exuberant second adolescence as a Brooklyn hipster and throwing himself into parts like these, it’s time to proclaim him another reason to love New York.
  94. The best thing in the movie is Stewart. She was the leggy hobo-camp teen in love with Emile Hirsch in "Into the Wild," and she's better at conveying physical longing than any of the actors playing vampires.
  95. M. Night Shyamalan has come up with an unoriginal faux-doc horror picture that actually works like a demonic charm.
  96. For these kids to sing and dance with all their hearts, they need to go to a place in themselves that should be closed down forever. The glories of War/Dance are torturously won, and all the more glorious for it.
  97. Neither movie (Capote/Infamous) gives you the whole picture, but it's fun to see them both and rearrange the pieces in your head.
  98. Honoré has proven you can make a movie musical in which style doesn’t upstage content--a movie musical that blossoms from the inside out.

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