San Francisco Chronicle's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 5,854 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 53% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 45% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 0 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 62
Highest review score: 100 The English Patient
Lowest review score: 0 Marci X
Score distribution:
5,854 movie reviews
  1. More than a high concept stretched to feature length. This is a funny and extremely satisfying comedy, the best in a while.
  2. A brutal movie, brutal in all the right ways -- brutally stark, brutally funny, brutally brutal. [30 Oct 1992]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  3. A movie that is not only achingly funny but also full of serious and philosophical truisms.
  4. Funny, riveting look at the music scene that ruled Manchester, England, from 1976 to 1992.
  5. One of the best war movies of the past 20 years.
  6. It is impossible to take your eyes off the screen.
  7. Part fairy tale and part bogeyman thriller -- a juicy allegory of evil, greed and innocence, told with an eerie visual poetry.
  8. Director Bernard Rose has created a committed, intelligent and fascinating piece of work with no irony about it.
  9. A film of real beauty, which is surprising, since it's not a movie of beautiful sentiments or settings.
  10. Extraordinary.
  11. The picture, written and directed by Francis Veber, the screenwriter of "La Cage Aux Folles,'' is a complete success.
  12. The new Planet of the Apes is not a remake, and it's not a sequel. It is an amazing display of imagination.
  13. CQ
    The film deserves some kind of honor for its campy originality, smart and funny dialogue, and provocative yet sensitive look at the making of a film circa 1969.
  14. It comes as a bonus that this romantic comedy is one of the rare pictures of its type that actually is about something -- the double-edged sword of celebrity.
  15. Part of the appeal of Topsy-Turvy is its generosity about human folly and shortcomings. Its wistfulness is very touching.
  16. Extraordinary.
  17. A daring, free-spirited and ultimately moving performance by Benjamin Bratt lies at the beating heart of Pinero.
  18. Splendid.
  19. A triumph for all involved.
  20. The film underscores the paradox in this man's life: the split between the mild-mannered New Yorker and the fearless vagabond who joined an Arakmbut hunting raid.
  21. Don't be too quick to jump on Hurt with complaints of old-fashioned gay stereotyping. Only with a development well into the movie will the audience realize the layers he brought to Molina's role-playing.
  22. Stuns with writing, acting, direction.
  23. Intelligence and beauty -- and teasing romance -- shape Mansfield Park into a gorgeous, enchanting experience.
  24. It's the kind of small but amazing character study (think ``Marty'') that film lovers yearn for while griping that this type of picture no longer gets made. Turns out it does.
  25. A venemous Valentine to Hollywood sugarcoated with laughs.
  26. One of the most powerful romances of recent years, it is as generous as they come.
  27. May be the most magnetic, most beautiful and bravest Carmen ever to grace a stage or film set.
  28. People who see it may feel like dancing out of the theater afterward. Go for it.
  29. A steady undertow of sex gives this French thriller a scintillating surface.
  30. It's hard not to come away in awe of a director in complete control of every frame.
  31. An earthy, sexy mystery.
  32. An intelligent, well-made film about a seemingly well-adjusted, likable and loquacious woman.
  33. This is a transcendent film, deeply committed and beautifully wrought. It will make anyone who sees it look at the world with new eyes.
  34. Exceptional, powerful new documentary.
  35. An exquisite and powerful documentary -- one whose elegance only heightens its devastating impact.
  36. From the outside, Sunshine sounds like the most boring film on Earth. In fact, it's glorious.
  37. Needs to be seen and savored.
  38. Qualifies as director Giuseppe Tornatore's second full-fledged masterpiece. His first: "Cinema Paradiso."
  39. It's an horrific and tragic story, but somehow made beautiful through the care and attention of Schnabel's direction and Bardem's tender, unforgettable performance.
  40. Anybody with a soft spot for fakers, who either identifies with them or just admires their chutzpah, is going to get a kick out of Happy, Texas.
  41. Presents us with characters of such humanity and dignity that it begins to seem obscene that until now we haven't exactly given all that much thought to the Kurds.
  42. Wise, delicate and impeccably performed, Yi Yi is a three- hour drama that looks at one middle-class family in transition -- and does so with such a kind and probing eye that we all see our lives reflected through Yang's lens.
  43. A poetry of love, longing and affirmation bleeds through the music of Cuba, and some of the best sounds the island ever created are captured with embracing humanity.
  44. So wonderfully odd, even spiritual, that audiences won't be able to do anything but smile.
  45. An indelible statement on loneliness and spiritual thirst.
  46. A thrilling, audacious work.
  47. One of the best crime dramas to come along in years.
  48. At its slowest, the film has value as a historical document. At its best, the film gives a human face to stories of unimaginable suffering and unexpected triumph.
  49. Maybe it's no mystery how they did it, considering the aggregate comic talent, but this bunch achieves peaks of sublime nuttiness.
  50. Philippe Blasband's screenplay is witty and economical, and the film's editing is crisp.
  51. Her (Anderson) performance is a study in the difference between hubris and pride, remarkable for how unshowy but profoundly devastating it is.
  52. Few who see it will be sorry. Sometimes being humane means not being squeamish.
  53. An extraordinary behind-the-scenes look at the comedy game.
  54. A first-rate crime thriller and further proof that Soderbergh is one of our great contemporary film stylists.
  55. This is a smart film, told in a minor key, that augurs well for Whaley's directing career.
  56. Fascinating in its depiction of presidential leadership in action.
  57. A movie about serendipity and spontaneity.
  58. The writing, by Rapp and Catherine Dussart, is exquisite, and the performers, including Francois Truffaut's old colleague Jean-Pierre Leaud as a magistrate, are all first-rate.
  59. The result is a sprightly, entertaining film, but one in which the satire is neutralized for laughs.
  60. French director Claude Berri's exquisite, methodical Lucie Aubrac is a romantic thriller so tightly drawn it almost leaves one breathless.
  61. Sigourney Weaver is so daring and amazing, her veracity is at times painful to behold.
  62. A vital, sexy and touching movie that goes to the heart of what human caring is all about.
  63. Neither a "gay" movie nor a straight one; it is simply a funny one.
  64. Has its awkward and rough edges, but there's a purity here, a goodness of intention and a commitment to justice.
  65. They talk and talk, and somehow it's delightful.
  66. Beatty has fashioned a hilarious morality tale that delivers a surprisingly potent, angry message beneath the laughs.
  67. Turns out to be the most unnerving film of the year. Easy.
  68. Potentially oppressive subject matter is redeemed by impeccable moral integrity and stunning artistry.
  69. Altman has delivered a lot of surprises in his long directing career, and his new comedy, Cookie's Fortune, is one of the most refreshing -- not because it's so good, but because it's so sweet and affectionate.
  70. Leigh is perfectly cast as the game-pod goddess.
  71. Under Fontaine's direction, family dysfunction is an intense experience with unexpectedly positive repercussions, even if the steps between are painful and potentially deadly.
  72. Digs up both laughs and chills from timeworn material.
  73. It turns out that Pepe Le Moko is even better than "Algiers."
  74. Best movie of the summer.
  75. You leave Cinema Paradiso with that feeling that's kind of like getting kicked in the stomach, but nice. It's one of those breathless, swept-away-by-a-movie experiences that you might have once a year, if you're lucky. [16 February 1990, Daily Notebook, p.E-1]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  76. An actors' feast.
  77. The kind of picture to whip out the clichés for: Surprisingly original. Delightful. Brilliant. Funny as all heck. When 1989 is through, sex, lies, and videotape may well be remembered as the best film of the year. [11 Aug 1989, Daily Datebook, p.E1]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  78. They are naturals at acting, not because they're good at lying but because they can't be phony.
  79. It is not merely a thriller but a shocker. It will separate hard-core Jet Li followers from the fair-weather fans.
  80. Has an odd mix of quickly grabbed handheld shots and scenes of striking beauty.
  81. Midnight Run has thrills, excellent performances, touching moments, slick plotting, lively dialogue, plenty of laughs, beautiful locations and finely detailed direction. It's an across-the-board success, the best new movie I've seen in years. [20 July 1988]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  82. Burns has created an endearing gathering of people we all know, and every one of them is so much fun that leaving the theater at the end elicits a touch of regret.
  83. One of the most haunting and vital movies of the year.
  84. It's shockingly funny - you don't sit there deciding to laugh. Your own laughter catches you by surprise. [14 Apr 1989]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  85. Jim Jarmusch has come up with something strange and amazing.
  86. A further, captivating extension of Oshima's marriage of the oblique and the erotic.
  87. The comic contrast between the genteel snobbery of von Bulow, a Danish aristocrat, and Dershowitz's dry contempt for his well-tailored client is treated with understated but stinging wit in Nicholas Kazan's brilliant script. [9 Nov 1990]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  88. The pieces of the drama are put forth like the shapes of the five fingers of a hand, and finally they find a kind of awkward unity that was predictable from the start. And yet, the gesture of it all is utterly captivating, the way a dream would be if it ever really came true. [27 Feb 1987, Daily Datebook, p.74]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  89. Breaks the formula for teen romances. Martin Short, as the vain and zany drama teacher, does not disappoint.
  90. This is an amazing record of a group of lives -- and probably more resonant than anyone could have imagined when the project began.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Has more originality, nitty-gritty humor, spirit and spunk than all the summer blockbuster retreads combined. Underneath the jousting and jiving, there's a sharp, uncompromising look at the anatomy of a race riot in the movie. [30 June 1989, Daily Notebook, p.E3]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  91. It's simply a quiet and heartbreaking look at the dynamics of one family. That's the beauty of it.
  92. I laughed so hard, my eyes watered. I laughed so loud, I lost track of whether anyone else was laughing. I laughed so much, I ached afterwards. [29 July 1988, Daily Notebook, p.E1]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  93. Deliciously witty and entertaining… A first-rate thriller, one that's likely to generate as much word-of-mouth as “Alien,'' “Carrie'' and “Psycho'' did in their time. [23 Aug 1991, Daily Notebook, p.F1]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  94. Not only more crazy than “Reservoir Dogs,'' but it also feels more real. [1 Jan 1993, Daily Notebook, p.D1]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  95. Egoyan's voice is so clear and loving, his vision so forgiving and his film so intelligent that you come away refreshed.
  96. There's a seething moral core in Amores Perros that uses the canine savagery as an entre to human brutality.
  97. Anybody who talks about True Romance has to start with the writing. It's dazzling. In scene after scene, Tarantino surprises the audience even while coming up with dialogue that rings much more true than anything you could have anticipated. [10 Sept 1993]
    • San Francisco Chronicle
  98. An inspired mix of spirited family entertainment and harrowing drama.
  99. Directed with playful wit and energy, with steamy sex scenes played as much for laughs as anything else.

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