NPR's Scores

  • Movies
For 1,065 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 61% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 36% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.6 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 67
Highest review score: 100 The Tribe
Lowest review score: 0 This Means War
Score distribution:
1065 movie reviews
  1. Mitchell brings respect, tenderness and a generous helping of his antic wit to Rabbit Hole, not to mention a rare gift for adding visual radiance to a talky stage play.
  2. The kiddie set can chortle at Megamind's slapstick and its goofy one-upmanship while adults get a kick out of all the smart spatial tricks that highlight the 3-D effects.
  3. Their friendship in Due Date is hard-won, and the audience is right there with them.
  4. To devotees of Al Gore's prophecy of a soon-to-be-parboiled Earth, "Skeptical Environmentalist" author Bjorn Lomborg is the devil. So what does an ecologically incorrect demon look like? Like an aging Danish surfer dude, it turns out.
  5. If John Cassavetes had directed a jazz musical by Jacques Demy, it might have looked something like this.
  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. Yet in the end it's less the climactic madness and mayhem in White Material that sear the memory than it is the silent, balletic creep of child soldiers, grabbed out of school and sent with machetes and rifles through a forest to exact revenge for decades of repression.
  8. The end result is that Tiny Furniture plays like situation comedy, but with an overlay of performance art.
  9. It's the relationship between the two men that makes the film work: Geoffrey Rush's teacher cracking the quip, and Colin Firth so persuasive as the panicky king that by the time he gets to his crucial speech about going to war, you'll be panicking right along with him.
  10. Soderbergh imposes a shape until the film begins to feel less like puzzle pieces in search of their place and more like one seamless picture: It's almost as if, with this collage of the artist's past work, he's created an entirely new final monologue for Gray.
  11. Despite dramatic Hawaiian locations, up-to-date visual effects and a bit of nontraditional casting, the movie feels not especially brave and far from new.
  12. At its best, The Fighter takes on the chasm between televised boxing and its mostly working-class, aspirational origins with grit and intelligence.
  13. When it comes to the emotional state of those being laid off, of their families and even of those doing the laying off, it gets things right enough to make audiences squirm.
  14. An awkward jumble of half-assed thriller and lumbering romantic comedy, less competent by a wide margin than "The Lives of Others." It's also a whole lot sillier, though not in a good way.
  15. It's silly and often laughable, but it's a sweet fantasy, too, produced in loving homage to the frothiest traditions of stage and screen.
  16. Deathly Hallows I actually manages to be involving and kind of artful about the boredom and loneliness of heroism, while sounding a long throbbing drumroll for next summer's grand finale.
  17. The movie evokes its time and place so potently that it almost doesn't matter that Hamilton's script proves unequal to her vision.
  18. Bhutto is smart and thorough on the inflamed history of Pakistan. But as a portrait of the first woman elected head of state in an Islamic nation, it comes closer to hero-worship than to considered biography.
  19. What's most surprising, given the latitude provided by all that conjecture, is that the Durst - "David Marks" for the purposes of the film - who emerges is less a character study than a thumbnail sketch.
  20. "Liar Liar" meets Obi-Wan? Who'da thunk even fearless star power could make these two work as a romantic pair? But both stars prove to be enormous fun in a gay love story played straight in a thoroughly crooked context.
  21. For all its dazzling allure, Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan, a feverishly psycho thriller set in the hermetic world of classical ballet, proves a meaningless exercise in Grand Guignol exhibitionism.
  22. Undertow, for all its narrative tricks, has been given the rhythm and texture of real life, as well as emotional undercurrents that are haunting.
  23. Kawasaki's Rose is the first Czech or Slovak film to address the issue of collaboration with the former Czechoslovakia's bygone secret police. That history must still be raw for some who survived the era, as it is in "The Lives of Others."
  24. The film, while unfailingly entertaining, feels a little small for its subject.
  25. Even by my super-wimp standards, Aron's exit is surprisingly coy, coming from a filmmaker who gets his kicks from goosing the hell out of his audiences.
  26. He's hardly a cuddly figure, but neither does he come across as an intimidating presence. After all, it's hard to think of anyone in cantankerous terms after they've just lovingly described the history of the beloved old hand-knitted stuffed animal that is their oldest possession.
  27. Edwards is a wizard with his laptop's effects program. The squiddy things he conjures up look like the real deal - thoroughly creepy and a gazillion feet tall. Too bad his screenwriting software didn't have an equivalently impressive plot-twisting algorithm to get him to the final fade.
  28. Inspector Bellamy is dedicated to the memory of two famous Georges: the drily ironic singer Brassens, and Georges Simenon, whose crime novels go for the jugular of bourgeois France - and dig deep into the black hearts of those who, just when they imagine they have hit bottom, can always sink lower.
  29. A creaky, sometimes forced drama that burrows under your skin if you let it, Welcome to the Rileys lurches along like Lois' car as she tries to exit her garage for the first time in years.
  30. Back in Canada, Dallaire tells a psychiatrist that he remembers Rwanda in flashbacks that are "not like memories at all." Shake Hands with the Devil captures something of that sensation; it's a depiction of events that are too painful to remember, too essential to forget.

Top Trailers