Portland Oregonian's Scores

  • Movies
For 3,370 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 4.7 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 68
Highest review score: 100 Million Dollar Baby
Lowest review score: 0 Eban and Charley
Score distribution:
3370 movie reviews
  1. Doesn't add much to the oft-told story of a boy and his dog, and it never establishes the rules of the dogs-in-space myth it creates, but it is perked up by the gentle intelligence of writer/director John Hoffman.
  2. Almost nothing that's said or done here is convincing. And the energy is set at near-coma level.
  3. Aselton is clearly trying to broaden her reach as both actress and director beyond the rumpled indie comedy of "The Freebie," her directing debut, and the concept is there, but a movie like this needs a much more polished execution that Black Rock gets.
  4. If Schaefer's intent was to provide some sort of insight into Chapman's character, some hint of explanation for this senseless tragedy, he fails, probably because there's none to be found beyond one lonely guy's addled brain chemistry.
  5. This overwatered trifle is doomed to wilt and fade quickly from memory.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The script is simply shameless, taking some of the details of the Shues' lives and then slathering them with a thick layer of Hollywood frosting.
  6. The film moves too slowly and dispassionately to resonate as it should.
  7. Eventually the movie wants to have things both ways: to approvingly entertain mainstream audiences with the glittering spectacle of space battles and to pay lip service to the notion of conscience.
  8. Do yourself a favor. Rent "My Bodyguard" instead.
  9. Some of the performances -- Mitchell, Fischler and especially Lucas -- are lively, but Barr never gets under Kerouac's skin to show the pain of an artist who can't hold his life together. It's a tragedy, played entirely on the surface.
  10. Surprisingly dull.
  11. If the film doesn't touch the original, it doesn't hit rock bottom, either.
    • Portland Oregonian
  12. There's handmade and then there's amateurish. This, alas, is the latter.
  13. This one's painful.
  14. There's plenty of blood and screaming and mayhem, and it's not particularly well-staged, shot or cut -- though I suppose actually caring about film craft denotes one as a spoilsport in this context.
  15. War of the Buttons means well. But ultimately there's only marginally more edge to this treatment of World War II than there is to the average episode of "Hogan's Heroes."
  16. The drama is telegraphed and glossy and un-fascinating; the edges have been belt-sanded until any camp value is lost. And it's filmed in that "Moulin Rouge"/"Chicago" style where you see half a dance move before the shot cuts -- which somehow makes a lot of difficult, sexy work seem simultaneously frenetic and boring.
  17. Feels like a movie that wants to bare its fangs, but only manages a mild gumming.
  18. If anyone could take a movie about a bunch of jerks who play poker and make it interesting, it should be Curtis Hanson. Or rather, it should have been.
  19. Its breeziness keeps it from ever being completely bland or flat.
  20. Perhaps this is what fans want from a movie like this: to sit back as if in a Jacuzzi and get a quick impression of history and Rome and such. If so, Howard, Brown and company likely have another monster hit on their hands.
  21. Modest in every sense but one: Its cast is huge.
  22. The movie gets just enough right that the things it doesn't get right (beyond its overdependence on a not-so-surprising story puzzle) smack you cold in the face.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The Austen cosplay is too exaggerated, as are the other guests.
  23. It gets by on its concept for a little while but too often mistakes stupid-stupid for clever-stupid.
  24. Palo Alto is "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" without the wit; "River's Edge" without the depth. It's like reading a first novel by a talented writer who has something to say but isn't yet sure how to say it.
  25. It's certainly all Araki up there, and the film is handsome and swiftly paced. But it also feels terribly routine and even, strangely, for all the trangressiveness it strives for, retrograde.
  26. For all its handsome decor, tasteful restraint and old-fashioned look-and-feel, is a stiff, lacking tension, sizzle, drama, energy, appeal and, finally, purpose.
  27. Cthulhu (kuh-THOO-loo) shows that you can't go home again. Seriously: Don't ever go home -- you'll be sorry.
  28. While it's hard to dismiss his intention or effort, Harrelson's one-note performance sinks the film.

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