NPR's Scores

  • Movies
For 1,016 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 60% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 37% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 4.2 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 The Artist
Lowest review score: 0 This Means War
Score distribution:
1,016 movie reviews
  1. The original was a little sharper, with actual satirical swipes at modern British life. The remake replaces some of that material with lazy pop-culture gags, most of them specifically African-American.
  2. Brand's character, who combines Bono's moral sanctimony with Keith Richards' supernatural hedonism, ultimately doesn't add up.
  3. Ultimately, in a film that highlights the physical barriers - walls, roadblocks, armed guards - that keep Palestinians where the Israelis want them, the film's biggest barrier is the one Jacir erects between Soraya and the viewer.
  4. Frothy, frantic and inescapably unromantic - the two leads have less chemistry than an American high-school curriculum - Heartbreaker marks the uneven feature debut of television director Pascal Chaumeil.
  5. An overwrought, undercooked tale of crazy love and crazier revenge.
  6. Heartless seems eternally at war with its own genre, unwilling to succumb to bloody mayhem yet neither smart nor coherent enough to transcend horror convention.
  7. This is among the better Allen knockoffs of recent years, even if a few of its riffs seem hazardously off-key.
  8. Directed by Neil Burger, whose "The Illusionist" also pulled an upbeat coda out of a hat, Limitless is entertaining for much of its running time. It's glib, and it's overly fond of hyperdrive pans, psychedelic montages and swift rack-focus shifts.
  9. Rio
    Name the first things that come to anyone's mind about Rio de Janeiro - samba, soccer, sunbathing, Carnival - and those are the building blocks of this movie. Expect the expected.
  10. So long as Exporting Raymond sticks to the headaches of adapting Everybody Loves Raymond into Everybody Loves Kostya, it's a funny and revealing look at the immense chasm between the two cultures.
  11. These fleeting moments never quite overcome the sense that Earthwork's narrative follows too-familiar templates, and that its characters lack the careful detail of Herd's own art.
  12. On a technical level, The Tree marks a significant advance over the humble utility of Bertuccelli's previous film, drinking in Australia's pastoral majesty with an abundant eye for beauty that falls just short of the intended poetry. Yet the characters aren't nearly as resonant.
  13. The glib story and hectoring structure undermine the filmmakers' best intentions.
  14. Watching these two actors move from being sweetly flirtatious to doing real emotional battle may not entirely compensate for the movie's other failings, but it goes a long way toward making amends.
  15. For those already somewhat familiar with the subject, the directors' distillation of these 40 hours of film will expand their knowledge - if not their consciousness. But other viewers may spend the whole movie wondering exactly when the merry magic is going to kick in.
  16. Eventually, too little is left to the imagination to do what it does best: fill in the gaps with visions far more frightening than anything a filmmaker could put onscreen.
  17. A Good Old Fashioned Orgy deserves credit for not entirely wimping out.
  18. It's a campy rampage that runs a few minutes shy of four hours, dooming what otherwise would likely be a bright future as a midnight movie.
  19. Nothing about it lingers, not even the sulfuric stench of a bum scene or a particularly hammy performance.
  20. When Stanton lets the film be pure popcorn entertainment, with swashbuckling set pieces and lovably corny romanticism, it's a great ride in the Indiana Jones tradition.
  21. Delicacy is phony in ways that might seem drearily familiar to audiences weaned on American romantic comedies.
  22. But a few mild misgivings aside, Spurlock has made, in essence, a 90-minute promo reel for the convention, a paean to fanboy (and fangirl) enthusiasm that could double as an orientation video, if such a thing were necessary. It's a brisk and cheery overview, sweet but superfluous.
  23. There's a better documentary to be carved out of Hit So Hard, but not necessarily a great one, because the gossip and drug-fueled capers offered up by Love are simply more compelling than the tremulous course of Schemel's life. Here, as then, Schemel plays backup to history.
  24. It's the sort of well-meaning fable that's ultimately more admirable than persuasive.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 55 Critic Score
    Grassroots is a movie where bad ideas, because they're the ones championed by the "correct" side, are king. It never acknowledges that sometimes idealism is just another kind of manipulation.
  25. It's populated by characters who are just too good to be plausible.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 55 Critic Score
    On the plus side, the action sequences - desaturated, chopped up and herky-jerky as they are - are mildly thrilling.
  26. Orchestra of Exiles will interest anyone who's concerned with European Jewry or classical music in the first half of the 20th century. But it provides mostly the facts of Huberman's legacy and little of the flavor.
  27. The comic relief, an attempt to buoy the sinking feeling of Dolly and Joseph's difficulties, steals away the emotional weight of their story. The dominance of the madcap side of the film's split personality lays an airy veneer over Dolly and Joseph's woes, making them seem inconsequential - as unsubstantial as an observation about wedding-day weather.
  28. The movie's violence, although gruesome, flirts with slapstick, and the story appears bound for domestic comedy when all the major characters sit down for Thanksgiving dinner at June and Chet's grand Victorian farmhouse. But the meal becomes more freak show than satire.

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