NPR's Scores

  • Movies
For 1,037 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 4.5 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 66
Highest review score: 100 The Tribe
Lowest review score: 0 This Means War
Score distribution:
1,037 movie reviews
    • 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.
  1. (Untitled) does have great moments, particularly in its technical execution -- the director began his career as a musician, and his command of sound design is particularly imaginative.
  2. 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.
  3. After a while, you can see the setups happening -- and once you do, the careening gets predictable. Which gets old, really fast.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. Cumming always gives good value, and his regular bursts into cabaret numbers are certainly an added bonus. Yet this instinctively ironic actor doesn't seem best suited to play the movie's most sentimental creation. A mouthy, heart-of-gold construct, Rudy dresses like Ratso Rizzo and comes on like The Fonz.
  7. 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.
    • 45 Metascore
    • 55 Critic Score
    On the plus side, the action sequences - desaturated, chopped up and herky-jerky as they are - are mildly thrilling.
  8. If this fabulously decked-out foursome is self-absorbed enough to be inadvertently cruel on occasion, they also suffer lots of guilt -- though their angst is rendered somewhat less angsty for viewers by the zingers, the designers, and the cheerfully objectified men on display.
  9. Delicacy is phony in ways that might seem drearily familiar to audiences weaned on American romantic comedies.
  10. This is among the better Allen knockoffs of recent years, even if a few of its riffs seem hazardously off-key.
  11. It dresses up boilerplate horror in a classy shell, yet never gives it the pulse it needs.
  12. Bottom line: Grant the film's big moments a kind of loopy majesty, and note that they're better acted than they deserve to be, not just by Ifans, Redgrave and Spall, but by David Thewlis and Edward Hogg as the villainous father-son team of William and Robert Cecil. It's a classy cast.
  13. The script groans beneath a mass of symbolic winking and declamatory exposition that has the unfortunate effect of turning the villagers into credulous simpletons, ready to blow with any wind that carries them.
  14. If Nenette as a character is more a narrative convenience than a depiction of an actual condition, her permanent childhood does provide the 63-year-old Balasko with an exuberant, unpredictable role. That she continues to make work for herself as both an actress and a director is a good thing, but it would be better if she found a more ambitious writer.
  15. Nanny McPhee, the homely yet exemplary governess, is back. Why? Hard to say, but one thing is certain: Writer-star Emma Thompson didn't do it for the kids.
  16. What's really missing from Conviction are the thorny questions it refuses to take up with any depth.
  17. Despite the local color, the movie isn't especially globalized. The major characters all speak English, and the action sequences throb to the music of Lady Gaga, the Roots and Gorillaz.
  18. The lack of authenticity underlines the thinness of their conceit: Without a plausible backdrop, all that's left of Love Crime are the power games between two duplicitous women and the serpentine plotting that results. And even that, under the slightest scrutiny, frays like a thin layer of tissue paper.
  19. As action movies go, Valkyrie is pretty short on action.
  20. What's Your Number? trades in the sort of hard-R crudity that's become standard since "The Hangover," but the added explicitness doesn't make it any less artificial a contraption.
  21. Aside from the giggles induced by the romance-novel bits, the movie's principal hazard is exhaustion. There are too many characters, and too many of them spend too much time morphing into something else. Five more like this? That would be demonic.
  22. Worst of all is the hitching of all this extravagant suffering to an inspirational ending filled with sweet regret, healing hope and some picturesque nestling in the titular oaks with the next generation.
  23. That makes the latter portion of the film much more successful than what precedes it, an improvement aided by the fact that the POV device eventually feels less like the director trying to show off and more like an integral part of the story. But it's still not enough to save a remake that, rather than trying to fix the deep flaws of its source, just covers them in a shinier coat of paint.
  24. La Soga isn't without redeeming qualities: Superfluous flashbacks aside, Crook keeps the action moving at a fast clip, cutting fluidly from the streets of Santiago to its criminal pipeline in Washington Heights, and he gets a sinister turn from Calderon, a veteran character actor who plays Rafa with a soulful swagger.
  25. Though Eat Pray Love never loses the sour whiff of unexamined first-world privilege, its heroine does at least immerse herself in different cultures rather than expecting them to adapt to her.
  26. Next to the hopelessly inexpressive Stallone and the English-impaired Li, Statham emerges as the movie's principal wit. But the script furnishes him with only a few deadpan quips. Besides, it's no great accomplishment to be the funniest guy in a Sylvester Stallone flick.
  27. A slideshow of actual photographs by the Bang Bang Club during the end credits packs more emotional punch than anything that precedes them, displaying in their still frames the singular focus that the movie lacks.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    When Luhrmann finally reveals the title character, he does so as assorted partygoers work themselves into a frenzy, Rhapsody in Blue pounds on the soundtrack and fireworks explode in the sky...Unfortunately, the film is never again as successful; from here on, it has to dig into the bothersome business of telling Fitzgerald's story.

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