NPR's Scores

  • Movies
For 1,046 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 Boyhood
Lowest review score: 0 This Means War
Score distribution:
1046 movie reviews
    • 72 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    More directly, In Bloom follows on 2012's "The Machine Which Makes Everything Disappear," a documentary by Tinatin Gurchiani that offered bleak vignettes about the lives of young Georgians.
  1. Despite its fanciful premise, Never Let Me Go looks and feels utterly real.
  2. The Well-Digger's Daughter offers a fervent poem to the region's abundant beauty.
  3. (Marsh) downplays political questions of ideological rights and wrongs. Rather than making a film about terrorism, or about war, Marsh looks at how they affect the people caught up in their machinery.
  4. That film is far more interesting in concept, and infinitely more elegant in execution, than what Rogen and his buddies have cooked up in This Is the End — but I've gotta admit, it's not nearly as funny.
  5. The filmmakers have mostly cast from Dominican playing fields rather than from acting studios -- Algenis Perez Soto, the accomplished first-time performer who plays Miguel Sugar Santos, was himself a teen ballplayer -- so game and practice sequences have an easy authenticity from the start.
  6. The director wants him to engage his "audience," but Rebney -- as misanthropic as one would expect of a man who lives alone in a remote rural cabin -- only wants to talk about politics.
  7. Wiseman's fragmented approach misses the continuity of the show, which mixes erotic dance with comedy, magic and even a little soft shoe, and tells an overarching story that Crazy Horse never quite communicates. Yet there's more than enough compensation in the scenes Wiseman does catch.
    • NPR
  8. It's the sort of film that feels so authentic that even knowing it's a fiction, the morning after seeing it, I found myself scanning headlines to see if there were any new developments.
  9. The result? A briskly self-aware, thoroughly stage-struck portrait of a theatrical portrait.
  10. Written and directed by David Riker, who built his 1998 drama "La Ciudad" around immigrants in New York City, The Girl is stingy with backstory but rich with visual clues.
  11. Synecdoche, New York is one heck of a head-trip.
  12. The German Doctor is never showy or melodramatic — just a kind of true-life horror story about the helpful, soft-spoken monster in our midst.
  13. What makes you sit up straight is that The Oranges takes seriously everyone's unhappiness, including the home-wrecker's, without letting anyone off the hook of responsibility for their own becalmed misery.
  14. Turturro's direction owes a little something to Spike Lee, and a lot to Allen, who reportedly had a hand in helping refine the script — certainly his own lines sound as if he's simply riffing in character. Together they succeed in keeping the mood light, even as the filmmaker is gently tugging the plot in other directions — to look at loneliness, and longing, and heartbreak.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 80 Critic Score
    Whether or not you agree with its underlying critique of existing drug policy, How To Make Money Selling Drugs is an ambitious, creative attempt to talk in a single film about everything from the disparate treatment of black and white dealers to the influence of asset forfeiture on law-enforcement strategies to the devastation of Mexico's drug war.
  15. I'm guessing Humpday will make its natural, easygoing leading men -- Mark Duplass and Joshua Leonard -- much sought after.
  16. By the end of Somewhere, all I could summon up was a fervent wish-you-well - not for him, but for his beguiling elf of a child.
  17. Everything that felt clumsy in The Hunger Games has been improved upon here. That's most apparent in the clarity of the action, but it also extends to how efficiently the film establishes so many new ensemble members.
  18. In one of the film's most fascinating moments, Klosterman asks Murphy what his biggest failure was. After uncomfortably dodging the question at first, Murphy admits that the only thing he thinks he might regret is quitting.
  19. The film plays by genre rules - explicit gore included - even as it turns them on their severed head.
  20. Stylistically unremarkable, playing it safe with structure, the film is still quietly revelatory.
  21. Cloud 9 is most moving when it steps quietly into the gap between physical decline and the persistence, at full blast, of unfulfilled longing and desire.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Neil Barsky's documentary Koch captures the essence of this very big personality - though if the film were even two minutes longer, it might constitute Koch overload. Luckily, Barsky knows when enough is enough, even if his subject doesn't.
  22. An intriguingly complex portrait of both of its characters and of the time of flux they live in.
  23. But lo! Isn't that Owen Wilson, blond and goyische to the gills, yet faithfully replicating the put-upon slump of the Allen shoulders, the quavering stammers about art vs. success, literature vs. Hollywood?
  24. Both Jeff and the film have a way of sneaking up on you.
  25. The movie's principal liability is that most of the music is highly derivative. Ghobadi spends a lot of time on songs that are more interesting sociologically than musically.
  26. Like zombie auteur George Romero at his best, Grau locks his sights on his social commentary of choice and goes after it with the zeal of a 19-year-old cannibal girl sinking an ax into the skull of her next meal. The result is messy, but it makes more than a meal.
  27. Director P.T. Anderson isn't generally a guy you go to if you're looking for answers. Questions are more his game, and that's as true here as it was in his far more serious pictures "The Master" and "There Will Be Blood." He is a terrific stylist, though, and the scattershot pleasures he's peddling in Inherent Vice may well satisfy those who like style more than substance, or maybe who like their style with substances.

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