Portland Oregonian's Scores

  • Movies
For 3,304 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 64% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 33% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 5.3 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 67
Highest review score: 100 The Heart of the Game
Lowest review score: 0 3000 Miles to Graceland
Score distribution:
3,304 movie reviews
  1. The screenplay, which Ceylan and his wife Ebru based on short stories by Anton Chekhov, is wordy but insightful. The widescreen cinematography, capturing the natural wonders that make Cappadocia a popular tourist destination, is crisp in exterior shots and delicately shaded indoors. And the performances are never less than totally convincing.
  2. Poitras' footage of what happened in Hong Kong is at the heart of Citizenfour, her new movie, and it is enthralling, a rare look at a crucial historical event as it happened.
  3. Recoing's performance is chillingly low-key -- sometimes you can swear that he believes his own fictions -- and Livrozet, making his film debut, has a perfect long-in-the-tooth charm.
    • Portland Oregonian
  4. The actors are all perfect and yet not. Christie, most obviously, is simply too gorgeous, even when she's meant to be rattled and lost; Pinsent is too credibly stolid; Dukakis never vanquishes an impression of sourness. These may be quibbles, but they add up.
  5. The film combines farcical and sinister tones, as well as textures of high polish and captured-in-the-raw neorealism, and it simply brims with energy and surprises.
  6. The result is a gripping film which, despite the annoying rugrat, demonstrates how part of leaving childhood behind is learning how and when to lie, and to do it well.
  7. As a film, Inside Job is polished enough, and fueled by piquant indignation, but it's also often scattershot and meandering.
  8. You will be heartened by the amazing sensation of watching one of the greatest works in the history of the medium unfold in front of you, piece by piece, year by year.
  9. It's a purely winning film.
    • Portland Oregonian
  10. Longer cut's slapdash additions make a cool, ambiguous film more literal; original 2001 version is far better.
  11. It's a fine, absorbing work, built with brilliance and without excessive showiness or flash. It feels, in fact, like a classic virtually upon its arrival.
  12. Up
    Is Up top-shelf Pixar? No. But is it quality summer movie entertainment? Absolutely. Even when the folks at Pixar aim to keep their feet solidly on the ground, they can't help but soar.
  13. As unpleasant as so many of its going-on are, Wake in Fright works both as an early instance of "Ozploitation" cinema and as a harsh critique of Australian colonialism and the absurdity of trying to bring so-called civilization to this vast arid wilderness.
  14. The animation is even more mind-blowing, if that's possible. The characters and objects seem even more palpable and real than last time. There's a thickness to bodies of the human characters and an amazing attention to detail throughout.
  15. The thrilling cinematic joyride that, among other improbable feats, puts Michael Keaton, as Thomson, smack in the middle of the Oscar race for best actor.
  16. Moves at a stately pace; it's a long film, to boot. But there's real drama and pathos in the story, in the blend of matter-of-factness and potential catastrophe, in the depiction of innocence imperiled.
  17. The plot's very sparsity gives "Life" its own special suspense. It is rarely possible to guess where the film will be in the next 10 minutes, yet nothing in it is improbable. That is another reason why the upbeat finale works. For all of the film's quirks and absurdity, it never strains credulity. [27 Dec. 1991, p.13]
    • Portland Oregonian
  18. What makes the Dardennes' films so powerful is their refusal to judge, positively or negatively, their characters.
  19. It's a celebration of American female screen acting, it's a study of early feminism that feels relevant today, it's a carefully mounted exercise in period filmmaking and it's a beloved novel come to life for the fourth time. [23 Dec 1994]
    • Portland Oregonian
  20. Like "Amadeus," Shakespeare in Love works splendidly as an appreciation of an artist in the heat of creation, and it breathes life into "Romeo and Juliet."
  21. The Missing Picture feels akin to last year's great documentary, "The Act of Killing."
  22. The sense of inescapability, the mood of capitulation and resignation, becomes the story. What is being made clear is the thoroughgoing rot of a civilization; there is literally no place to find peace, solace or consolation.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    Watching a group of kindergartners learning to crack an egg into a bowl is hardly the stuff of drama, and yet watching it, you suspect that something important is happening. And it is.
  23. It has the feel of something slaved over lovingly in merry isolation, and it is virtually the only thing I've seen this year that conveys in the viewing the obvious enjoyment its makers had in whipping it up.
  24. The pacing is perfect, and the action, mostly filmed in a studio, is never less than utterly believable. The director’s first feature, “Margin Call,” was full of rapid-fire dialogue, and he shows off considerable range by following it up with this film.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Astonishes on many levels.
  25. It's clear that Weerasethakul knows exactly what he wants to do and that he does it in his own way. And that's why his film, even if it can't be recommended to everyone, blossoms inside you the longer you allow it to.
  26. Beautiful, poetic, mournful, at once rich and spare, Brokeback Mountain takes a daring conceit and creates of it an overwhelming work of art that should speak to anyone capable of love.
  27. It's a melodrama, but played with rigorous and surehanded spareness, and it never panders, even as it gets a mite hysterical near the end.
  28. The excellent news is that Yates and company took their time adding visual depth to the film -- they shot it as 3-D -- and the result feels immediate and real and not at all slathered-on.

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