New York Observer's Scores

  • Movies
For 649 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 6.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 56
Highest review score: 100 The Theory of Everything
Lowest review score: 0 Hall Pass
Score distribution:
649 movie reviews
  1. Michael Caine is such a consummate actor that it's a major cause of concern to see him in Harry Brown, another hateful vigilante flick the wags in England have already labeled Dirty Harry Brown for reasons that are immediately obvious.
  2. Better films about senior citizens displaced by a greedy housing market have been made. (Anyone for Vittorio De Sica’s Umberto D, or Ira Sachs’ recent heartbreaker Love is Strange, about a homeless elderly gay couple?) But the humorous script by Charlie Peters (based on a novel by Jill Ciment), fluidly directed by Richard Loncraine, makes this an agreeable experience.
  3. The D Train is so confusing it’s hard to track what anyone had in mind.
  4. Surprising, inventive and crisply, merrily written and directed by Derrick Borte, The Joneses is a brisk, captivating entertainment. Think Ozzie and Harriet on speed.
  5. Gun Hill Road is worth seeing for the acting. The great character actress Miriam Colon makes a brief but memorable appearance as the strong matriarch of the household, and Ms. Santana, a true transgendered teen who has never acted before, is especially wrenching.
  6. I love the publicity quotes by Baz Luhrmann stating that his intention was to make an epic romantic vision that is enormous. Also: overwrought, asinine, exaggerated and boring. But in the end, about as romantic as a pet rock.
  7. A master stroke of enchantment from one of the few legitimate cinematic geniuses of the modern cinema, with a nimble and tender performance of enormous elegance and charm by Colin Firth that is heart-meltingly romantic.
  8. To Rome with Love has moments of isolated charm, but it's only moderately entertaining, it isn't very funny, and it's entirely too long.
  9. Like any good cautionary tale, Puncture tells a suspenseful story responsibly, creating food for thought and leaving the audience both enlightened and entertained.
  10. May not appeal to every taste, but it marks an arresting feature debut for Jordan Scott, a director who is well worth watching.
  11. It’s a universal, American “anyone can make it” success story that has uplifting appeal onstage, and in Mr. Eastwood’s capable hands, the joy spreads like apple butter.
  12. 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.
  13. The script, by Melissa James Gibson, is as scintillating as a dead rodent.
  14. Let it be said that Ms. Streep is galvanizing, even as the film slogs through too much information and not nearly enough illumination.
  15. The Girl sounds like a real mess. It isn’t. It’s just a slow, well-made human interest story on a very small scale, ultimately touching but as inconsequential as a slice of pineapple at a Hawaiian luau.
  16. A benign slice of life about suburban angst on Long Island. It's not much, but thanks to the noble efforts of a very good cast, I've seen worse.
  17. If you’re patience doesn’t wear out, the movie culminates in that clever shock ending that not only explains everything but gives what you’ve just seen a rewarding jolt.
  18. What passes for a plot has been done a thousand times before — in much better films than A Single Shot.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 25 Critic Score
    It might be time for Johnny Depp and Tim Burton to start thinking about seeing other people. Alice in Wonderland, their seventh film together, is so thoroughly soul-deadening and laborious that the prospect of an eighth collaboration feels like the sword of Damocles.
  19. I wish all the agony in The Big Year was leading up to something fascinating in the end, but the most inviting thing in the movie was the exit door.
  20. While the folks back at the Pentagon say stuff like “Where are our Navy Seals?” the audience is treated to jaw-dropping action sequences, enhanced by awesome special effects and staggering cinematography.
  21. Aiysha Hart delivers a mesmerizing performance.
  22. Big Ass Spider, lazily directed by Mike Mendez and unwisely written without a trace of necessary camp by Gregory Gieras, aims for satire and settles for stale shtick. It ends with the song “La Cucaracha,” leaving the door open for more insects to come. Cockroaches, anyone?
  23. Too small and dark to appeal to a large audience, it's not a movie to cherish.
  24. At an obvious crossroads in his life, Woody Allen has been thinking about guilt, morality, consciousness and the limitations of the intellect. I wish he had done it in a more entertaining and satisfying film than Irrational Man.
  25. Awkward music cues and choppy camera work add baggage to a film so overwrought that its excesses seem more unintentionally silly than bleakly disturbing.
  26. Written and directed by Mike Pavone, with a fine, understated, atypical performance by Ed Harris, it may be a feel-good family picture centered on kids, but it offers talismans to live by for people of all ages.
  27. It is not a sequel, just another retread of tired material in a franchise that is more than ready for the big comic book bonfire. And why the title? There is nothing amazing about it.
  28. Considering the subject, ripe with titillating possibilities, it's surprisingly about as sexy as a week-old meat loaf. Tastefully directed by Tanya Wexler, it is a total joy from start to finish.
  29. No contemporary film that promotes love instead of war should be overlooked. Private Romeo will undoubtedly be regarded by some as a curio, but it's a sweet, sympathetic and surprising one, highly recommended to the adventurous spirit in an enlightened and changing world.

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