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 A Separation
Lowest review score: 0 This Means War
Score distribution:
1,037 movie reviews
    • 81 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    The result is a self-conscious tone poem concocted from oblique camera angles, shots held longer than it takes a tadpole to reach maturity and nighttime images enhanced with a psychedelic glow. An alternate title for it might be "David Lynch, Gone Fishin'."
  1. The deliberate pace may suggest that the film is being thoughtful, but Let Me In is really just an exploitation movie with the confidence to take it slow.
  2. The House I Live In shows Nannie Jeter as she hopefully watches Barack Obama's 2008 electoral victory, but doesn't analyze the current president's apparent reluctance to significantly alter anti-drug policies.
  3. For all its rhetorical whimsy and hipster dressings, (500) Days of Summer is a thoroughly conservative affair, as culturally and romantically status quo as any Jennifer Aniston vehicle.
  4. 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.
  5. Loki is a skilled creation, but lacking that sense of why, it's hard not to think of him as an artistic construct rather than a character. The same goes for Prisoners, a work of impressive craftsmanship that winds up making us think too much about how it was fashioned rather than what it has to say.
  6. Based on its thrillingly fractured first half - not to mention "Moon" in its entirety - Jones seems much smarter than he allows the film to be in the end. It wriggles out of its own intriguing puzzle.
  7. Set to Jeremy Turner's spare and mournful score, Narco Cultura is ultimately more pensive than lurid.
  8. Though the film's simple story is squarely aimed at tots, DreamWorks' digitizers have referenced Eastern visual styles -- everything from delicate Chinese screens to flashy Japanese anime -- to enliven the look of the film.
  9. Austrian documentarian Michael Glawogger's Whore's Glory is no "Pretty Woman." But neither does it qualify as an expose.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    It's a simple and lovely movie, and particularly for people who haven't seen "Spellbound," it's a great introduction to the intriguing mix of parents - neurotic, loving, pressuring, calming - who raise great kids who do great things.
  10. It was frantic sex that earned Shame an NC-17 rating, but this arty drama is mostly slow and methodical. And thoroughly unsexy.
  11. If nothing else, while watching Ruppert, you'll believe he believes this stuff.
  12. If Drinking Buddies is meant to be his ticket into mainstream comedy, it feels mumblecore-ishly vague and rambling in its construction, like "Hannah Takes the Stairs" without the raffish charm.
  13. Oddly, Countdown to Zero ends by suggesting that viewers get those nukes abolished by texting their disapproval to a phone number listed in the credits -- as if the governments of China or North Korea (or the United States, for that matter) are just waiting for a gentle rebuke from civic-minded documentary viewers.
  14. Scrub away the gore and the nastier bits of provocation, and Ben Wheatley's Sightseers belongs squarely in the tradition of British classics like "Kind Hearts and Coronets" and "The Ruling Class" — satires that transformed simmering class resentment into brittle, nasty dark comedy.
  15. Doubt cast a long moral shadow on Broadway but seems blunter on screen, largely because Shanley's fussy directorial notions ... are less nuanced than the religious and moral arguments he's given his principal characters.
  16. While Europa Report recalls such small-ensemble stuck-in-space flicks as "Moon" and "Sunshine," it's basically "The Blair Witch Project" relocated to the vicinity of Jupiter.
  17. Evincing more visible intelligence than any of his human co-stars aside from Lithgow, Caesar is disquietingly lifelike.
  18. Too much of this seething drama is devoted not to characterization but to posturing.
  19. Reich has a good sense of humor, as is virtually required of an adult who's less than 5 feet tall — he has Fairbanks disease, the same condition that accounts for Danny DeVito's stature — so he's pretty much guaranteed a laugh when he hops to his feet and asks if he looks like an advocate of "big government."
  20. It's populated by characters who are just too good to be plausible.
  21. The good news about Outrage, his grisly return to the genre, is that Kitano doesn't have to shake the rust off - his impeccable compositions and clean, minimalist sound design are still calibrated for maximum impact. Even as dozens of bodies pile up, each act of violence feels as bracing as the sound of a gunshot ripping through the night air.
  22. Following up his acclaimed debut feature "Down Terrace," a gangster drama that also mixed genre shocks with dark comedy and explosive family spats, Wheatley gives Kill List a discordant tone that makes it feel like a horror film even when it isn't.
  23. Provocative yet far from definitive, Pink Ribbons, Inc. is a critique of "breast-cancer culture." It could even be called a blitz on pink-ribbon charities and their corporate partners - though to use that term would be to emulate the war and sports metaphors the documentary rejects.
  24. Neil Jordan seems well aware that audiences may be feeling deep fatigue about vampires. So with his latest, the director of Interview With the Vampire makes a vampire film that seeks to reinvent the species, while harking back to a more classical — read: less sparkly — take on the genre.
  25. The students all say and do more than they should in the filmmaker's presence, which certainly makes them watchable -- sort of a slow-motion train wreck.
  26. This all essentially serves to distract from the fact that all that really happens in the film is that the company manages to eventually reach the mountain.
  27. Many of the White House scenes are jarringly motley, as Whitaker maintains Gaines' dignity against a series of performances that range from bland (James Marsden's JFK) to cartoonish (Liev Schreiber's LBJ). It comes as a relief when Daniels reduces Jimmy Carter and Gerald Ford to TV clips — though that strategy makes the film even more of a stylistic jumble.
  28. A documentary that focuses rigorously on process and atmosphere at the expense of context and engagement.

Top Trailers