New York Observer's Scores

  • Movies
For 527 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 6.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 55
Highest review score: 100 Argo
Lowest review score: 0 The Paperboy
Score distribution:
527 movie reviews
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    What is truly amazing, especially in this age of Ponzi schemes and the misappropriation of people’s life savings, is the fact that Herb and Dorothy have never sold a single piece in their collection.
  1. When it comes to thrillers, this one is as good as it gets. Not for the squeamish, but for anyone who loves movies, it’s too exhilarating to miss.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    The psychological payoffs outweigh any implausibilities. And what's the harm in logging off your network for a few hours to indulge in some good old-fashioned science fiction?
  2. Proving again that her Best Actress Academy Award for playing Edith Piaf in "La Vie en Rose" was no fluke, the marvellously sensual Marion Cotillard, with her wounded doe eyes and look of permanent unfulfilled longing, delivers another kidney punch as a double amputee in love with an illegal bare-knuckle fighter in the French shocker Rust and Bone.
  3. Put a staggering accomplishment called The Impossible, from Spanish director J. A. Bayona, at the top of the season's must-see list.
  4. They are two intelligent, sophisticated people searching for the spicy condiment they need to keep their relationship fresh during a bittersweet weekend in Paris, and, like the film that frames them, they are smart, substantial and enchanting.
  5. The result is a film of great humanity that reveals Albania as a primitive region struggling to bridge the gap between medieval European customs and the tide of progress.
  6. Although they are no longer together and are living their own separate personal lives, their story, fictionalized but still autobiographical, bonded them for life. Apparently, they are best friends whose dedicated collaboration was the only way they could tell this harrowing story. It's a brave effort any way you slice it.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Mr. Green has managed to turn a story about two road workers doing roadwork into something compelling. Sometimes that is a credit to his quirky script, but mostly it happens when he lets the dramatic scenery speak for itself.
    • 73 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    It has a seedy underbelly that will appeal to hard-core Mickle fans; it’s more deranged than it initially seems.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    The Grandmaster offers welcome relief from a moviegoing summer spent in sensory overload.
  7. Not since "The Straight Story," when Richard Farnsworth traveled all the way from Iowa to Wisconsin by lawn mower to see his dying brother, have the wisdom, innocence and pride of a senior citizen combined so powerfully as a metaphor for the courage to face mortality. Unforgettable.
  8. A creepfest so stupid it makes trashy slash-and-burn epics like "Humans Versus Zombies" and "I Spit on Your Grave" seem like Molière and Proust.
  9. There are humorous intrusions (e.g., an art show at Jeanne’s gallery that includes Nazi symbols constructed from penises), and great performances throughout.
  10. As much as I liked it, I have to admit Run & Jump is a work of no action — of love unrequited, feelings unexpressed and goals never reached. Sitting through it requires great patience. I don’t think this is an Ireland that would interest John Ford.
  11. Artificial, irresponsible, filthy and forgettable, it knocks itself cross-eyed trying to make you roar with laughter at chemotherapy, with the nauseating Seth Rogen milking most of the yuks. But a stoner comedy about cancer? I don't think so.
  12. 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...
  13. War Horse is a don't-miss Spielberg classic that reaches true perfection.
  14. This three-hander has an honesty and a momentum that I found grudgingly rewarding.
  15. Director McQueen shares no primal truths, offers no resolutions, and the movie seems pointless. It seems almost wicked to spread on all that enticement and titillation, and then throw the sandwich away.
  16. Lena Dunham makes a 98-minute home video seem like 98 days of hard labor.
  17. It’s far superior to what usually comes out of the British slums in the genre of gangland thrillers.
  18. 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.
  19. The great screenwriter Steven Zaillian's elaborate, convoluted script, so muddled that even after it's over you still don't know what it's all about, is a drawback - but the movie is a master class in sinister style, tense and deeply uncomfortable.
  20. 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.
  21. It overcomes inescapable boxing and martial arts clichés and leaves you thoroughly sated, energized and wanting more.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Laugh-out-loud funny and somewhat melancholic.
  22. Unlike most alleged Hollywood rom-coms, Like Crazy is delicate, uplifting and definitely worth investigating.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 25 Critic Score
    By the time the end finally comes, there's no relief. You're left with the vague recollection of an interesting movie you were watching before you got kidnapped and subjected to over an hour of torture porn starring a fat, sadistic clown.
  23. Sleep Tight is a creepy - but highly effective and superbly made - horror movie from Spain in which the monster is spine-tinglingly human.

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