New York Magazine (Vulture)'s Scores

For 1,798 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 0.8 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 War of the Worlds
Lowest review score: 0 Funny Games (2008)
Score distribution:
1,798 movie reviews
  1. The film bulldozes any genuine nuance or insight or even emotion in exchange for ready-made plot points and by-the-numbers catharsis.
  2. There is one nice pop-up scare against a dozen or so false, ineffectual ones - a poor percentage. As the title states, she is a woman and wears black, but she might as well be a hastily decked-out script girl for all her impact.
  3. The gut-whomping, high-concept romantic thriller This Means War is not a distinguished addition to director McG's oeuvre.
  4. Spirit of Vengeance is so focused and, as a result, so impoverished that you actually feel bad for Cage. The actor tries to bring the weird (though at this point one wonders if he can even do anything else) but the film more often than not leaves him high and dry, saddling him with standard-issue action hero lines and boilerplate action set-pieces.
  5. Watching the impossibly dry and somnambulant Good Deeds, you actually miss that crazy side of Perry. It's sort of ironic: Here's a film about a guy who's being false to his true self, and you realize the director might be doing the same.
  6. As a tribute for the awesome destructive power of the teenage libido, the house-party-gone-apocalyptic flick Project X is pretty compelling...Think "Girls Gone Wild" meets "Black Hawk Down." Unfortunately, it also appears to want to tell a story, with characters and things, and on that level it pretty much completely falls apart.
  7. In their move from 11-minute episodes on TV to 94 minutes, Tim and Eric have lost none of their hilarity or irreverence. But this time around, they somehow manage to be tedious, too.
  8. To be fair, when the story is moving, it's okay.
  9. Watching The Hunger Games, I was struck both by how slickly Ross hit his marks and how many opportunities he was missing to take the film to the next level - to make it more shocking, lyrical, crazy, daring.
  10. The Snow White comedy Mirror, Mirror turns out to be not that terrible - or maybe it's that the terrible first half hour wears you down so much that the rest seems relatively pleasant.
  11. If you can stay awake, you'll see a performance by ­Keaton that is radiant in its simplicity, all ditheriness shaken off. She's still ­peaking - ­someone give her a great role.
  12. The film would be better if it were gentler. It's broadly written and played, the actors too busy telegraphing their characters' emotions to let us contemplate their faces in peace.
  13. The finished product is in a different league than the whompingly terrible Men in Black II - it hits its marks. But it's not inventive enough to overcome the overarching inertia, the palpable absence of passion.
  14. It also comes as little surprise that she (Fonda) knocks the part out of the park, even if the film around her leaves something to be desired.
  15. As usual, it's Banks, who's turning great performances in lousy movies into some kind of brilliant career strategy.
  16. He's still a young guy, but all throughout Witness Protection I imagined Perry sitting glumly at a dressing-room mirror, like the aging Chaplin in "Limelight," forlornly rubbing makeup in his face - a tired, old clown stuck in a tired, old routine.
  17. I hope I'm not raining on Beasts of the Southern Wild's deluge to say it doesn't always live up to its pretensions. There's a lot of unshaped babble and draggy landscape shots, and the music, so lovely in small doses, is numbing when it's ladled over everything.
  18. Yes, it all gets kind of old, and yes, it's all over the place, but you'll probably find yourself laughing at least some of the time. Dick jokes, after all, can be pretty funny.
  19. It's a great metaphor - but not a great movie. Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris direct in a drably naturalistic style, and the script is thin.
  20. Streep and Jones make themselves small: She's chirpy; he's crusty. Incessant pop standards on the soundtrack supply the emotion the director can't. All that's missing are commercials for estrogen cream and erectile-dysfunction meds.
  21. Roach is too stiff a director to give Ferrell room to romp. Bits like the one in which he's challenged to recite "The Lord's Prayer" needed extra zigs and zags instead of variations on the same joke. A looser director like Adam McKay (Step Brothers) might have created a happier climate for improv.
  22. Believe it or not, there's a strange kind of lifelessness to the movie that makes you wish it were dumber -- that it was more obnoxious and louder and crazier.
  23. These numbers, frankly, display a professionalism and confidence that most of the rest of the movie can't match. And yes, that's the bad news.
  24. Although it's shot in lovely, dusty shades of brown with splashes of Coca-Cola red, John Hillcoat's Lawless is dead weight: listlessly classical and then bludgeoning.
  25. It's just a movie about a bunch of guys and gals returning home for their reunion, with the only twist being that it's loaded up with stars and recognizable faces. Unfortunately, that serves to highlight the film's greatest failing, which is that all these big names and faces are given practically nothing to do.
  26. If you want your movie to blow up the right way, you have to do better than the paint-by-numbers story and characters presented here.
  27. So even if Here Comes the Boom doesn't quite work as a comedy (it's not particularly funny), or a drama (it's not particularly poignant), it has an earnest charm that keeps us engaged.
  28. The grandeur of the Lord of the Rings trilogy [has] been replaced by something that resembles tatty summer-stock theater.
  29. I'm not sure any other actress today could have pulled this off without seeming cheap or manipulative. The same, unfortunately, cannot be said for the movie itself, which often traffics in the manipulative.
  30. The whole movie is like an NRA wet dream, with Robert Duvall as a crusty gun-range owner who pitches in to shoot bad guys. Jack Reacher already feels as if it belongs to another era.

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