New York Magazine (Vulture)'s Scores

For 1,717 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 Horse
Lowest review score: 0 The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)
Score distribution:
1,717 movie reviews
  1. One of the sharpest and funniest movies about the music business ever made.
  2. No other concert film has ever expressed so fervently the erotic root of rock. Seeing it is the opposite of taking a trip down memory lane; it's more like a plunge into the belly of the beast.
  3. So intimate and sensual and funny and psychologically self-revealing that it makes most of what passes for sex in the movies look like cheap hysterics.
  4. A hushed, small-scale masterpiece that moves into the shadowlands of tragedy.
  5. Jackson has a genuine epic gift: Few filmmakers have ever given gross-outs such resplendence.
  6. An astounding, one-of-a-kind movie.
  7. A rare example of first-rate filmed opera.
  8. You've seen the rest; now see the best.
  9. A love affair between performer and filmmaker. The director shows off his ardor by eliciting from his actors aspects of their gifts that they themselves may not have known they had.
  10. The most visceral and cumulatively powerful account of civil war since Gillo Pontecorvo's "The Battle of Algiers."
  11. The most deeply and mysteriously satisfying animated feature to come along in ages.
  12. It has what the most heartfelt Disney animated features used to have: rapturous imagery matched with real wit.
  13. The most joyously cinematic movie I've seen this year. Chomet's astonishing imagination conjures images you could swear you've seen in your dreams.
  14. Jackson is rare among the makers of epic movies in that he knows how to do the small stuff, too. The Return of the King has “heart”--how else could it pump out all that blood?
  15. The most powerfully entrancing children's film in years. Of course, a true kid's classic is just as magical for adults.
  16. Sweetest, funniest, most humane movie I've seen all year.
    • 90 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The sleek beauty, crafty wit, family warmth, and impeccable slapstick suffusing The Incredibles immediately vaults it to a new, higher level of entertainment.
  17. The visually stunning Sin City has grit to spare and a thrilling undercurrent of morality.
  18. Steven Spielberg's War of the Worlds is huge and scary, moving and funny--another capper to a career that seems like an unending succession of captivations.
  19. Brilliant, tightly focused, and momentous.
  20. One of the most realistic documentaries I've ever seen--and, dry as it is, one of the most devastating in its implications.
  21. The Queen is the most reverent irreverent comedy imaginable. Or maybe it's the most irreverent reverent comedy. Either way, it's a small masterpiece.
  22. You should see Happy Feet--not only because it's stupendous, but also because it features the best dancing you'll see on the screen this year.
  23. Bird clearly knows the great silent clowns: The slapstick he devises is balletic.
  24. For all its portentousness, this is the best Harry Potter picture yet. In some ways, it improves on J.K. Rowling’s novel, which is punishingly protracted and builds to a climactic wand-off better seen than read.
  25. Might be the most provocative teen sex comedy ever made; it is certainly one of the most convulsively funny.
  26. Above all is Langella, achingly vulnerable under layers of flesh. In one scene, alone, he eats peanut butter intensely, thoughtfully, and nothing he could do as Hamlet would seem deeper or more poetic.
  27. The film is a masterpiece in which “locked-in” syndrome becomes the human condition.
  28. Anderson’s fearless, bighearted filmmaking is an antidote to the toxic cloud of Manifest Destiny. He has made a mad American classic.
  29. The new Pixar picture Wall-E is one for the ages, a masterpiece to be savored before or after the end of the world.
  30. I've never seen a movie with this mixture of fullness and desolation. Rachel Getting Married is a masterpiece.
  31. Cantet's real-time classroom scenes are revelations: They make you understand that teaching is moment to moment, an endless series of negotiations that hang on intangibles—on imagination and empathy and the struggle to stay centered. This is a remarkable movie.
  32. It has taken an animated film to go where live-action dramas and even documentaries haven't--to tickle our synapses and slip into our bloodstream.
  33. Hats off to Olivier Assayas's plain yet hauntingly beautiful Summer Hours, a true--albeit nonsecular--meditation on art and eternal life.
  34. The end of The Cove is as rousing as anything from Hollywood. Manipulative? Sure--but isn't that fitting? Capitalism has driven an entire village to massacre dolphins and keep its work hidden.
  35. Pantheism, Cameronism: In Avatar, what's the diff? Now he's king of a world he made from scratch.
  36. For grown-ups, the film will touch something deeper: the heartfelt wish that childhood memories will never fade.
  37. For all the horror, it's the drive toward life, not the decay, that lingers in the mind. As a modern heroine, Ree Dolly has no peer, and Winter's Bone is the year's most stirring film.
  38. The self-satire of The Kids Are All Right is so knowing, so rich, so hilarious, so damn healthy that it blows all thoughts of degeneracy out of your head.
  39. This is, no doubt about it, a tour de force, a work that fully lives up to its director's ambitions.
  40. The vision is as hateful as it is hate-filled, but the fusion of form and content is so perfect that it borders on the sublime.
  41. Spielberg has been ridiculed for shooting his actors from below against impossibly Spielbergian skies and a denouement that lays the love on copiously. But there's nothing simpleminded about how he uses movie magic, as a spell to dispel nihilism, to save us from the worst of ourselves by summoning up the best.
  42. Everything he did in live-action movies with rolling boulders and runaway convoys he does bigger and better - by a factor of ten - in every frame. At the end of two hours, my jaw ached from grinning.
  43. The Deep Blue Sea is not a showy or pronounced movie. Open yourself up to it, however, and it might destroy you.
  44. Once the action starts - and it starts very quickly - The Raid is relentless, breathtaking in its sheer propulsive majesty. But it's also shot through with moments of bleak poetry amid the carnage.
  45. The Avengers is both campy and ­reverential. Comic-Con nerds will have multiple orgasms. I had a blast.
  46. Pi has designed his own terrarium to keep from staring directly into the abyss. It's not denial. It's faith in something else: the transformative power of storytelling. The film is transcendent.
  47. As a moral statement, Zero Dark Thirty is borderline fascistic. As a piece of cinema, it's phenomenally gripping - an unholy masterwork.
  48. Something sacred passes between Trintignant and Riva. The actress's eyes signal deep awareness as the sounds coming out of her mouth become animalistic.
  49. Fruitvale Station will rock your world — and, if the life of Oscar Grant means anything, compel you to work to change it.
  50. It’s true that the number of whales in captivity isn’t huge. But they’ve now become the mightiest symbols of our cultural hubris — of our inability to manage creatures we have the power to capture and imprison. It’s a metaphor for the ages.
  51. This is by light-years the most entertaining movie of the year. How many apocalyptic sci-fi action extravaganzas leave you feeling as if the world is just beginning?
  52. Osder has made a documentary that’s astonishingly in the present tense.
  53. The movie is as cornball as all get-out and — once you discern the narrative arc — as predictable. But then there’s the part that’s — as we serious cinephiles like to say — infuckingcredible.
  54. The movie is a slot machine that never stops spitting quarters.
  55. The LEGO Movie is the kind of animated free-for-all that comes around very rarely, if ever: A kids’ movie that matches shameless fun with razor-sharp wit, that offers up a spectacle of pure, freewheeling joy even as it tackles the thorniest of issues.
  56. Living with Mason and his parents over time you feel an intimacy, an empathy, a shared stake. I’m not saying Boyhood is the greatest film I’ve ever seen, but I’m thinking there’s my life before I saw it and my life now, and it’s different; I know movies can do something that just last week I didn’t. They can make time visible.
  57. What's remarkable is how often the photographer's subjects allow themselves to be caught on film; it's as if they understood implicitly that Nachtwey was there not only to agitate for reform but to memorialize their agony. He does both.
  58. I've never seen another movie that so clearly expresses the sensual sustenance that great folk culture provides its practitioners.
  59. It's an elliptical tragedy in which the fate of its characters takes on a larger significance while never losing its intimacy.
  60. Michel Bouquet's performance makes Anne Fontaine's How I Killed My Father required viewing.
  61. The lifelong friends in Fred Schepisi's marvelous Last Orders actually seem like lifelong friends.
  62. Wiseman lets the material breathe in a manner unique to the subject.
  63. It's a truly prodigious piece of work, resembling a career summation far more than a maiden voyage.
  64. It would be a mistake to regard American Splendor as an anthem for the common man. It is the UNCOMMON that is being celebrated here.
  65. A comedy in the best sense--it draws its life from the pitch-perfect authenticity of its characters.
  66. A mesmerizing documentary.
  67. Polanski’s strongest and most personally felt movie.
  68. Moodysson captures exactly the preening narcissism and gumption of these frazzled would-be revolutionaries trying to wriggle out of their bourgeois straitjackets.
  69. Linklater must have recognized a kindred spirit when he read Belber's play. He's given us a reality-fantasy game, a psychodrama, a harangue, and a detective story all rolled into one.
  70. The funniest and most emotionally charged erotic road movie since Bertrand Blier's "Going Places."
  71. The Pinochet Case is a searing album of remembrance from those who, having survived, suffered most.
  72. A movie that really zips along; it offers some of the same pleasures as the silent slapstick comedies, particularly the Keaton films, with their sense of how sheer velocity carries its own wit.
  73. A flashy, nasty triumph
  74. Sophisticated and nuanced, and every character is bursting with emotional contradictions.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    A brilliant, disturbing, but unstable and half-crazy piece of work.
  75. Belzberg doesn't intervene during the moments of violence, believing that the film can force social change only by showing the worst. If she is correct, then this film should move mountains.
  76. At its best, the film compares favorably to its obvious antecedents, "Rififi" (which Melville once hoped to direct) and "The Asphalt Jungle."
  77. What it's really about is the euphoria that talent can bring to those who are possessed by it. That euphoria lights up the screen.
  78. Beautifully directed by Phillip Noyce, the film -- is a full experience, a love story and a murder mystery that expands into a meditation on the deep deceptions of innocence.
  79. The script, instead of being what we tolerate in order to savor the visuals, is a delight all by itself.
  80. A first-rate zombie movie. The best tribute I can offer is that it makes you want to go out directly afterward and down some expensive single-malt scotch.
  81. Spellbindingly original -- Like the wild orchid, Adaptation is a marvel of adaptation, entwined with its hothouse environment and yet stunningly unique.
  82. Achingly funny movie...Guest has cultivated a stock company of players whose work together is so intuitively sharp that it seems to redefine the boundaries of acting.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Andrew Davis, the director of "The Fugitive," one of the best thrillers of recent years, has added pace and heat and explicit sexuality to the material without whipping up phony excitement.
  83. Coppola both wrote and directed, and there’s a pleasing shapelessness to her scenes. She accomplishes the difficult feat of showing people being bored out of their skulls in such a way that we are never bored watching them.
  84. Linklater, whose previous movies include "Slacker," "Before Sunrise," and "Waking Life," may be the most versatile director of his generation. School of Rock is his most unabashedly mainstream movie by far, and yet it’s commercial in the best way.
  85. The jamboree is beautifully shot and directed, by Chris Menges and David Leland respectively, and there is a haunting touch: the presence of George’s son, Dhani, on guitar, looking near-identical to his dad in his twenties.
  86. Sean Penn is so frighteningly good in this movie that he outdoes even the best of his earlier work.
  87. It’s a magical little movie about a most unmagical subject.
  88. Tsunashima gives a deft performance in a role that starts out as caricature but becomes full-bodied. Collette commands the screen virtually the entire time.
  89. What reveals Pontecorvo as an artist, and not simply a propagandist of genius, is the sorrow he tries to stifle but that comes flooding through anyway--the sense that ALL sides in this conflict have lost their souls, and that all men are carrion.
  90. As a piece of inspirationalism about human stamina, Touching the Void is peerless, but what it doesn't--perhaps can't--explain is why people place themselves in such peril.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Antz, with its deadpan witticisms, its heart-stopping shifts of perspective, is completely entertaining, a kids' movie that will leave grown-ups quoting the best lines to one another.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The movie is a volatile combination of ambitious mythmaking and nasty reality, and like most of Spike Lee’s work, it is also an inextricable combination of good and bad.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    Writer-director Richard Kwietniowski has never made a feature before, but this debut effort is a triumph, a buoyant and elegant achievement -- romantic and ruminative yet always precise, a comedy of longing propelled by a strong current of satirical observation.
  91. Kim exalts nature--life’s passage--without stooping to sentimentality. He sees the tooth and claw, and he sees the transcendence. Whether this is a Buddhist attribute, I cannot say, but the impression this movie leaves is profound: Here is an artist who sees things whole.
  92. Free speech isn't merely a shibboleth in The Agronomist. As embodied by Dominique, it's a fire-breathing force.
  93. Most of the time we are with Cruise and Foxx, and their interplay is never less than galvanizing.
  94. While making his new film, he (McElwee) imagines that his boy is looking back at his screen image from some distant point in the future, when McElwee himself is gone. No child of a moviemaker could ask for a more beautiful bequest.

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