New York Magazine (Vulture)'s Scores

For 2,132 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 0.9 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 She Hate Me
Score distribution:
2132 movie reviews
  1. 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.
  2. His palette here is deep-toned, with bottomless blacks and supersaturated oranges and blues--as if the Walt Disney of "Pinocchio" had collaborated with Goya.
  3. You've seen the rest; now see the best.
  4. The coup de grâce is especially graceless because everything we know is already visible in Marinca’s eyes. The actress is extraordinary.
  5. The movie nails all this, and it’s smashingly effective as melodrama. But McQueen’s directorial voice — cold, stark, deterministic — keeps it from attaining the kind of grace that marks the voice of a true film artist.
  6. Bird clearly knows the great silent clowns: The slapstick he devises is balletic.
  7. 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.
  8. Haynes has calibrated the film so precisely to Blanchett’s talents that he couldn’t have rendered her better with animation.
  9. It's an entertainingly cynical small movie. Aaron Sorkin's dialogue tumbles out so fast it's as if the characters want their brains to keep pace with their processors; they talk like they keyboard, like Fincher directs, with no time for niceties.
  10. As a moral statement, Zero Dark Thirty is borderline fascistic. As a piece of cinema, it's phenomenally gripping - an unholy masterwork.
  11. What makes it so good is that no one is bad. These humans, desperate to do right, are caught up in a perfect storm of inhumanity. The evil is in the ecosystem.
  12. Before Midnight counts on our previous investment to keep us riveted. We are. And we want them back in spirit on that train to Vienna as much as they do. What’s next — After Sunrise?
  13. The movie has momentously disturbing ideas but a fine grain, its images suitable for framing — or hiding away in the attic.
  14. The most deeply and mysteriously satisfying animated feature to come along in ages.
  15. Perhaps the most awesome thing in Mr. Turner is how Leigh and cinematographer Dick Pope hint at Turner’s paintings in their landscapes — not to make the film look painterly but to suggest what Turner saw before transmuting reality into art.
  16. The Hurt Locker might be the first Iraq-set film to break through to a mass audience because it doesn't lead with the paralysis of the guilt-ridden Yank. The horror is there, but under the rush.
  17. The new Pixar picture Wall-E is one for the ages, a masterpiece to be savored before or after the end of the world.
  18. 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.
  19. Sweetest, funniest, most humane movie I've seen all year.
  20. 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?
  21. This teeming, tear-duct-draining, exhaustingly inventive, surreal animated comedy is going to be a new pop-culture touchstone. In all kinds of ways it’s a mind-opener.
  22. Shot by shot, scene by scene, it's a fluid and enthralling piece of work. I wasn't bored for a millisecond.
  23. Something sacred passes between Trintignant and Riva. The actress's eyes signal deep awareness as the sounds coming out of her mouth become animalistic.
  24. This tight, relatively low-key, step-by-step procedural has a stronger impact than any horror movie.
  25. Joel and Ethan Coen’s Inside Llewyn Davis is an exquisitely crafted tale of woe with heartfelt early-sixties folk music — and an overarching snottiness.
  26. The film is a masterpiece in which “locked-in” syndrome becomes the human condition.
  27. 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.
  28. 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.
  29. Anderson’s fearless, bighearted filmmaking is an antidote to the toxic cloud of Manifest Destiny. He has made a mad American classic.
  30. Smashing for much of the way; as a piece of fantasy moviemaking, franchise-style, it beats the bejesus out of "Harry Potter."
  31. As the spiritual subtext took over, I couldn’t help but feel that something essential had been lost. The state overwhelms the individual; so, too, by the end, does this beautiful, strange movie.
  32. For grown-ups, the film will touch something deeper: the heartfelt wish that childhood memories will never fade.
  33. This small, grim documentary about Indonesia is actually a bigger and grimmer movie about all of us — our capacity for both breathtaking evil and, occasionally, profound bravery.
  34. Lonergan is the master of taking a scene that starts off as something familiar, then sending it spinning off in another direction, and then pulling back at just the right moment, as the viewer’s imagination hurtles ahead to fill in the gaps.
  35. 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.
  36. 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.
  37. At its best, the film compares favorably to its obvious antecedents, "Rififi" (which Melville once hoped to direct) and "The Asphalt Jungle."
  38. 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.
  39. Little Men has a melancholy edge, but it’s not really a depressing film. For all the despair onscreen, what remains afterwards are its luminous characterizations and big-hearted filmmaking.
  40. It confronts, but it doesn’t exploit. It’s about one of the most horrifying events of recent years, and yet it’s defined by its austerity, its sense of quiet. It is as much about the complex, dull horror of memory as it is about the brute, sharp horror of that day.
  41. So Polley has gone meta — exuberantly, entertainingly, with all her heart.
  42. Taxi is a strange movie. These are nonprofessional actors, and the film veers between documentary realism and playful staginess.
  43. 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.
  44. It’s a near masterpiece.
  45. The Gatekeepers doesn't play like agitprop. The storytelling is strong, the images stark. The camera roams among multiple monitors showing multiple satellite views while an ambient score works on your nerves.
  46. Ida
    The movie’s chill is hard to shake off. It’s a grimly potent portrait of repression, of what happens to a society that buries its past in an unmarked grave — and lives its present in a state of corrosive denial.
  47. 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.
  48. The brilliance of Gett: The Trial of Viviane Amsalem is that, without a shift in tone, the film begins to seem like a tragedy populated by clowns, its males clinging to ancient laws to compensate for feebleness of character.
  49. The most visceral and cumulatively powerful account of civil war since Gillo Pontecorvo's "The Battle of Algiers."
  50. Her
    In Her, Jonze transforms his music-video aesthetic into something magically personal. The montages — silent, flickering inserts of Theodore and his ex-wife recollected in tranquility — are sublime.
  51. It has what the most heartfelt Disney animated features used to have: rapturous imagery matched with real wit.
  52. In totalitarian societies, artists have found all sorts of ways - some brilliantly imaginative - to disguise their political protest, but Panahi has no subterfuges left. This Is Not a Film ends with a whimper that is a bang. He must be freed.
    • 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.
  53. Rahim is an exciting, unpredictable presence, and Arestrup’s César has a stature that’s nearly Shakespearean.
  54. 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.
  55. 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.
  56. Brilliant, tightly focused, and momentous.
  57. Jarecki shows off this footage as evidence of a truly dysfunctional family in various stages of denial. What it reveals at least as much is the modern phenomenon of reality-TV self-exposure carried to such lengths that, by comparison, the Osbournes look like the Cleavers.
  58. The movie is a slot machine that never stops spitting quarters.
  59. Satrapi’s parents ship her off to a French school in Vienna, but she’s rudderless, ungrounded. She’s drawn back to a devastated Tehran, where she can’t design a life, either. This great film, by Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud, is that life, designed. It freed her mind; it frees ours.
  60. The resulting film is bizarre to the point of ­trippiness, yet it’s one of the most lucid portraits of evil I’ve ever seen.
  61. 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.
  62. Ulrich Mühe gives a marvelously self-contained performance. There isn't an ounce of fat on his body, or in his acting: He has pared himself down to a pair of eyes that prowl the faces of his character's countrymen for signs of arrogance--i.e., of independent thinking.
  63. The most miraculous thing about Man on Wire is not the physical feat itself, 1,350 feet above the ground, but that as you watch it, the era gone, the World Trade Center gone, the movie feels as if it's in the present tense. That nutty existentialist acrobat pulled it off. For an instant, he froze time.
  64. Of Men and War’s compassion is matched only by its relentlessness.
  65. Except for a screamingly funny climax in which he attempts to kidnap Pamela Anderson (who reportedly wasn't in on the joke), I found the Borat feature (directed by Larry Charles, who does similar duties on "Curb Your Enthusiasm") depressing; and the paroxysms of the audience reinforced the feeling that I was watching a bearbaiting or pigsticking.
  66. Magical and melancholy, The Tale of Princess Kaguya comes from the other mad genius of Studio Ghibli, Isao Takahata, who co-founded the beloved Japanese animation company alongside the great Hayao Miyazaki back in 1985.
  67. The movie doesn’t expand in your mind — it shrinks along with its protagonist, its conclusion a reductio ad absurdum.
  68. Mad Max: Fury Road is certainly a blast and a half: You don’t just watch it, you rock out to it.
  69. A meticulous, thoroughly engrossing lesson in how not to win friends (or wars) and influence people (or potential terrorists).
  70. A haunting, morbidly romantic melodrama with obvious links to "Vertigo," but from a reverse angle.
  71. Like his protagonist, Bahrani never gives up on William; his camera never stops probing. He loves West's face, and he honors its mystery.
  72. It’s sensational in the open air and subtle in smaller, enclosed spaces. It has sweep and intimacy. And, yes, we need this movie now.
  73. It comes together neatly, perhaps too neatly to be … poetry. But it's not prosaic, either. It has a lucid grace.
  74. For most of Eternal Sunshine, I found myself fighting off Gondry's hyperactive intrusions in order to get at the melancholia at its core. Fortunately, the idea behind this movie is so richly suggestive that it carries you past Gondry's image clutter.
  75. 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.
  76. 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.
  77. It truly is a movie about politics, and it’s among the more mesmerizing ones you’ll see — even if you know very little about Zimbabwe itself.
  78. The funniest and most emotionally charged erotic road movie since Bertrand Blier's "Going Places."
  79. Aside from yet another solid performance from Catherine Keener-playing a Harper Lee just preparing to publish "To Kill a Mockingbird," and here to act as Capote's unheeded moral conscience-that's the ONLY reason to see Capote.
  80. As a go-for-it music movie, Whiplash is just about peerless. The fear is contagious, but so is the jazz vibe: When Andrew snatches up his sticks and the band launches into a standard—say, Hank Levy’s “Whiplash”—it’s hard not to smile, judder, and sway.
  81. It becomes a meditation on the dual nature of film, on a "reality" at once true and false, essential and tainted.
  82. Wes Anderson’s latest cinematic styling is The Grand Budapest Hotel, an exquisitely calibrated, deadpan-comic miniature that expands in the mind and becomes richer and more tragic.
  83. It may not always succeed, but the lovely, perplexing Winter Sleep is a very personal film from one of the world’s foremost filmmakers. It’s well worth your time.
  84. The movie goes on for three hours without an emotional letup — it’s finally overwhelming.
  85. 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.
  86. A hushed, small-scale masterpiece that moves into the shadowlands of tragedy.
  87. Away From Her is a twilight-of-life love story, one that harshly demolishes our romantic notions of love and loyalty, then replaces them with something deeper and, finally, more consoling.
  88. That's the beauty of Mafioso: that what begins as a comedy of disconnection becomes a tragicomedy of connection -- of roots that go deep and branches that span continents.
  89. As he proved in his Iraq-centered "No End in Sight," policy wonk turned documentarian Charles Ferguson has no peer when it comes to tracking the course of a preventable catastrophe.
  90. Jackson has a genuine epic gift: Few filmmakers have ever given gross-outs such resplendence.
  91. It's a prizewinning combination, terribly English and totally Hollywood, and Firth is, once more, uncanny: He evokes, in mid-stammer, existential dread.
  92. Up
    By all means, see Up in its 3-D incarnation: The cliff drops are vertiginous, and the scores of balloons--bunched into the shape of one giant balloon--are as pluckable as grapes.
  93. Birdman is the very definition of a tour de force, and Iñárritu’s overheated technique meshes perfectly with the (enjoyable) overacting—the performers know this is a theatrical exercise and obviously relish the chance to Do It Big. But what comes out of the characters’ mouths is not so fresh.
  94. 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.
  95. Once the surprise of seeing something so miserable depicted with such wit and poetry wears off, you’re left with a nagging ugh, as well as the feeling that this emotional/psychological syndrome isn’t nearly as universal as Kaufman thinks it is.
  96. Gomorrah isn't memorable. The structure feels random, and the characters remain at arm's length. Next to HBO's "The Wire," which depicted an enormous financial ladder and also brought to life the characters on every rung, the movie is small potatoes: excellent journalism, so-so art.
  97. The emotional honesty of this movie rescues it from sentimentality. To Be and to Have is about more than a dedicated teacher and his pupils; it’s about how difficult and exhilarating it is to grow into an adult.
  98. Brooklyn doesn’t quite capture Brooklyn, but its ambivalence about being Irish is gloriously epic.
  99. It’s breezy, then suspenseful, and gradually, crushingly sad. On its own terms, it’s a perfect film.

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