New York Observer's Scores

  • Movies
For 658 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 1% same as the average critic
  • 53% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 5.9 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 56
Highest review score: 100 Argo
Lowest review score: 0 Some Kind Of Beautiful
Score distribution:
658 movie reviews
  1. Not a masterpiece, perhaps, but technically polished, with inspired performances and enough suspense that by the time Mr. Hamm found the redemption that freed him from his own demons, I was so wired I needed a Valium.
  2. The entire movie is about as sexy as a root canal.
  3. This is an oddball tale that is well worth telling, but Mr. Carrey simply cannot resist turning it into a Three Stooges routine in drag.
  4. Too small and dark to appeal to a large audience, it's not a movie to cherish.
  5. It's a fatiguing, low-key character study that drags along annoyingly and pleads for patience, but stick with it and you'll find the engrossing centerpiece performance by Ms. Theron a captivating reward that is well worth the effort.
  6. A well-meaning but desultory descent into darkness based on a memoir of the same name by Amy-Jo Albany, daughter of Joe Albany, the great jazz pianist who died in 1988 at age 63. The book, published in 2003, was subtitled Junk, Jazz and Other Fairy Tales From Childhood, and that just about covers it.
  7. This dumb movie turns from dubious to preposterous.
  8. One thing that defies debate: Zac Efron is going places as an actor of value. But he deserves better movies than Charlie St. Cloud.
  9. The movie, which has all the freshness and insight of a Movie of the Week on the Hallmark channel, is a first for the writer-director, which probably accounts for its lack of any definitive style or focus.
  10. My boy Viggo is always fascinating, but the movie is a concept searching for a story.
  11. As the narrative builds, the movie shows how the harassed and impatient Chinese-American finds tolerance, acceptance of others, inner salvation and love. A lot for one movie to negotiate, not always successfully, but the enjoyment factor is obvious.
  12. The movie doesn’t know if it’s a teen fantasy-romance or a more sophisticated satire that the material can’t support.
  13. Unfortunately, there aren’t many thrills and the pace is so slow that I fell asleep from tedium waiting for something that resembled a goose bump.
  14. For the Edgerton brothers and for their protagonists, The Square works on several levels, as it shows how far two people will go for love and profit--in more ways than one.
  15. By the way, for reasons nobody bothers to explain, Las Vegas is played by New Orleans. Go figure.
  16. The formulaic cat-and-mouse game played to the death rattle by Michael Douglas’ rich, vicious corporate maniac and Jeremy Irvine’s nice, clean-cut, homespun country boy in Beyond the Reach is so old it’s hairy.
  17. True Story trips and stumbles so much in the telling that you don’t know what to believe, and instead of one man’s irony you end up with two men’s lies.
  18. The best thing about Super 8, by far, are the kids, all perfectly cast. The script does a much better job making them believable and real than the adults...The rest of the movie steals shamelessly from...
  19. Young Mr. Eisenberg and a fine cast give Holy Rollers the ballast it otherwise lacks, but we've been down this road so often that there are times when I could only wonder why I was watching it at all.
  20. A good cast and the speed-dial theme of eco-terrorism should really add up to a film of more substantial mind over matter than the dull, talky and ultimately pointless espionage thriller The East.
  21. Liam Hemsworth, the Ben & Jerry Flavor of the Month, is a sexy Australian centerfold without a trace of an accent who can actually act. His love interest is Teresa Palmer, a fellow Aussie who recently starred in the zombie flick "Warm Bodies." They may be camera-ready smoothies who take their clothes off often enough to keep the teen dweebs drooling.
  22. Not everything from Ireland travels as well as the whiskey. Like mud-thick porridge, Shadow Dancer, another dreary, confusing conspiracy thriller about the Irish “troubles,” is one of them.
  23. The result is not without a few moments of exhilaration, although the overall effect is more like the Bard of Avon meets "Glee."
  24. Directed with a pulsating fervor by Neil Burger, Limitless is absurd but entertaining action-adventure escapism. Bradley Cooper is versatile and virile, and a valiant leading man.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The movie achieves the kind of rhythm of an opera, alternating between arias of animated poetry and the recitative of normal speech.
  25. Stranded is no blockbuster, but it manages to pass the time better than most of them have done in this summer of discontent.
  26. Written by Emma Thompson, it’s literate and respectful, but a dose of lithium in a champagne glass that is too stolid to ever come alive.
  27. One of the least likable characters (Cox) in recent memory--irascible, but with moments of real tenderness--he’s the reason this strange movie takes on a perverse charm that is uniquely its own.
  28. The dependable Australian actor Guy Pearce is always welcome, even in a well-meaning dud like 33 Postcards.
  29. You can't fault the theme that life's darkest moments brighten when two people need each other, but there's no drug strong enough to get me through another movie like Love and Other Drugs.

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