San Francisco Examiner's Scores

  • Movies
For 769 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 46% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Charlie's Angels
Lowest review score: 0 Bio-Dome
Score distribution:
769 movie reviews
  1. It's funnier, and bitchier, than Clare Boothe Luce's "The Women," and, best of all, it showcases three wonderful actresses who have rarely been better.
  2. Bay has two great assets in Connery and Cage. The special effects give The Rock a James Bondian feel so Connery's wry, world-weary devil-may-careishness looks right at home here.
  3. What could have been an insightful, irresistible movie is instead a simple, self-contained fable, pleasing to look at but meaningless
    • San Francisco Examiner
  4. A limp excuse for a coming-of-age flick, more interested in sexploits than sex, more adept at gross-out than girls.
  5. Freundlich's problem is that he has made an essentially interesting movie that never seems brave enough to say what it really intends.
  6. Classic in feel and loaded with sumptuous performances.
  7. By its hilarious, grotesquely over-the-top climax, Holy Smoke is ideologically, metaphorically out of control, as if it has risen from the '70s ashes.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  8. The World Is Not Enough, like a 19th version of anything, is inanely self-parodic. So much so that one wonders why Austin Powers need have bothered in the first place.
  9. Queasy comedy.
  10. Like sitting on the beach under a cozy, warm afternoon sun. The view is beautiful, but not much is happening and soon you drift peacefully to sleep.
    • San Francisco Examiner
    • 57 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Beautiful. Simply, beautiful.
  11. Linklater has less success telling a story; time passes amiably, but the film has no center.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    An impressive low-whistle, hardscrabble look at the world of pool sharks and the people who crisscross their lives.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    Too many questions are raised with no good answers.
  12. The director bludgeons us dumb with her genius.
  13. This is a movie that is wonderful on the peripherals.
  14. Directing his first movie, Jack Green, cinematographer on several Clint Eastwood films, shows an ease with the material (written by Jim McGlynn), but there's something a bit dull about the movie.
  15. The shenanigans have been pared into 84 minutes of transgressive, potty-minded farce, that is often Waters at his most cheerful and most thematically focused.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  16. The dramatic payoff is a bit disappointing; the movie is often overwrought; and its sense of its own importance finally wears you down.
  17. Simply an endurance contest, one almost worth staying the 82 minutes to see who wins.
  18. From Juan Ruiz-Anchia's florid, eruptive photography to the pinpoint editing by Howard E. Smith that enhances it, everyone involved with The Corruptor understands that action is the bottom line - except Chow.
  19. At its savviest, Scream 3 is a cheeky conceptual conceit, cheaply executed for the sake of achieving trilogy status. Instead, it's like a carnival that's been in town a week too long.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It's a fun movie - full of laughs and touching moments.
  20. Foster has whipped the actors into the sort of comic frenzy usually reserved for farce, and the ready-for-anything energy serves the material well.
  21. Particularly anticlimactic - the film itself seems sprung from molting yuppie catalogs.
    • San Francisco Examiner
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    What mystifies, too, is the complete absence of information about Salerno-Sonnenberg's private life.
  22. It's fun, but the blatant, obvious kind that mistakes allusive cool for mature filmmaking and subtle ideasmanship.
  23. Entertaining but predictable, and too long.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  24. Sublimely ridiculous.
  25. Fancher's placid, eerily subdued first directorial feature.
  26. It's hard not to like a movie like Men of Honor, but it's entirely possible.
  27. Parents should note the PG rating. There's little bloodshed, but several fight scenes, lots of loud roaring and some overwhelming special effects sequences could vex younger viewers.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  28. What director Charles Russell ("The Mask") and co-writers Walon Green ("RoboCop 2") and Tony Puryear do right is supply the kind of non-stop action and laconic one-liners we live for in Arnold movies.
  29. But then, just when it appears the race is lost, Steve James' love for his character and art form kicks in and wins the day, and, though flawed, Prefontaine is an engrossing portrait of a complex figure.
  30. During this movie, every few moments the theater fills with the appreciative guffaws of 18-year-old young men. How old are you?
  31. Harris, Heche make unholy twosome.
  32. Handsome, well-acted, well-written and beautifully directed movie.
  33. It took four people to write the screenplay for The Relic. All I can say is that I hope these people have not quit their day jobs.
  34. It feels like a trumped up trifle, disinterested in narrative exercises, using instead technique (cinematography, editing and, omigod, a soundtrack!) to swing moods and heighten reality, then send it crashing to earth.
  35. Neeson simply has no spark here. He is good and honest and honorable until your face turns blue. He's just no fun.
  36. When Party Girl isn't being silly, it tries to be endearing and socially redeeming, and to a good degree succeeds.
  37. Congratulations to director Mick Jackson and writers Jerome Armstrong and Billy Ray for liberating themselves from the tedious demands of believability.
  38. The jokes run hot, cold and tepid.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  39. If there is a reason anyone would voluntarily agree to make this movie it probably dwells somewhere in a realm only accessible to the thinking of ambitious actors.
  40. Some delightful surprises, but the sort of heavy-metal, high-definition sci-fi look that dominates the proceedings, plus the relentless pace and endless morphing, are somewhat tiring.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  41. Becky Johnston ( "The Prince of Tides" ) did creditable work on the screenplay, but there are times when this story about a truly rotten fellow seems to be one big jump cut.
  42. Slightly more mature and better assembled, Road Trip goes one better on "American Pie" by teasing out the idiosyncrasies in four guys existing in a personality grab bag.
  43. A big, silly movie about the famed goatish painter that stars the nearly perfect Anthony Hopkins.
  44. City of Angels will probably work better for some people than it did for a crusty fellow like me. I feel guilty that I don't like this movie more. I think the devil got the better of me.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Still, Singleton's willingness to take risks makes this a worthy, thoughtful film. Especially noteworthy: His sensitive handling of a love triangle between Kristen and her boyfriend and Kristen and another woman.
  45. Director Joel Schumacher and screenwriter Akiva Goldsman seem incapable of emphasizing what's important and relegating the rest to secondary status.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    In spite of how hard everything is to believe, you believe what Damon is doing.
  46. By casting model-turned-actress (and his now-estranged wife) Milla Jovovich as the Maid of Orleans, Besson gives us an over-amped spectacle with an annoying, sometimes ridiculous cipher at its heart.
  47. Unsalvageable B-movie junk.
  48. In the case of Jon Robin Baitz's script, adapted from his play, in spite of the fact that he made considerable alterations in the text to open it up to cinematic possibilities, the movie disappoints in much the same way the play did.
  49. This is not the addictive, hot-wired movie you want.
  50. The author calls the movie "perfect" - reassurance that the director hasn't tried to pull any fast ones.
  51. The standard noir trappings are here: the femme fatale, double-crossing, fatalism, broken dreams, innocence betrayed and the rest of it. But Stone pushes it all so far and so relentlessly that it becomes absurdist comedy.
  52. Lane, with his extensive stage experience, is acerbic, profoundly cynical and endlessly disgruntled. As the foil, Evans strike the right comic nice-guy note; he has fun with the character's sweetness and refuses to degrade him.
  53. This movie has a first-rate script, and director Joseph Ruben ( "True Believer," "The Stepfather" ) knew exactly what to do with it.
  54. Crammed with such earnest belief in the power of love - even if it happens in the Chicago Zoo - it almost doesn't matter that O'Connor and Loggia have better chemistry than Duchovny and Driver.
  55. More about having a good time with some interesting people than it is about watching a fine movie.
  56. Copycat is as steady and reliable as a pulse and as exhilarating as a surge of adrenalin.
  57. Crime-by numbers-cop drama.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  58. Earnest and kid-friendly -- also simplistic and dramatically creaky.
    • San Francisco Examiner
    • 53 Metascore
    • 75 Critic Score
    Sad but still bouncy.
  59. Cher is an inspired bit of casting, while the talented Dench is underused. Smith seems to be going through the motions as the fatuous and deluded aristocrat, while Tomlin has a ball as Georgie. But what really stays with you is the work by Plowright - she is a beacon of good sense (both as actor and character) and plucky as you please.
  60. The particulars of the plot don't make a great deal of sense, but Hartley's films have much more to do with style, or rather a philosophical refusal to show emotional involvement.
  61. At some point, the movie itself crosses the line, from a modestly thoughtful attempt to extrapolate a drama from real and urgent events to a generic action piece with predictable good and bad guys and pat, civics-book morals.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 63 Critic Score
    All the parts of Return that deal with Luke's faith in his father and his appeals for him to reject the dark side of The Force are very emotional. In fact, the best sections of Return are extensions of the melancholy implications of "The Empire Strikes Back." [Special Edition]
  62. It just doesn't work.
  63. Metroland is a provocative rumination on how relationships are warped by two people's inability to be truthful with each other.
  64. If I wanted a Nora Ephron cuddle-ganza, I'd rent one.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  65. So phenomenal that Bill Murray can't even steal it. And he tries. So excellent that Murray's MTV progeny Tom Green can't sink it.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  66. What's pleasing about this movie is its enduring adherence to the Bondian ideal.
  67. Exists as a seldom represented American time capsule, and it's all good.
  68. Director Simon West makes an impressive feature debut in this relentless action-comedy that is, more than anything else, about how funny it is to see hundreds of people exploded, shot, knifed, propellered and burnt to death, and how to land a plane on the crowded Vegas strip.
  69. To enumerate exactly how Bean messes up would be to expose the silliness of this movie, and since Bean's humor is terribly silly, rather, wonderfully silly, there isn't much point in going into detail.
  70. Really just a lurid potboiler.
  71. Nicholson squeezes every wretched drop of buffoonery from this character, and it's distressing to watch him play an easy role for easy laughs.
  72. An army of rolled abs and their owners give the state of American race relations a beginner's workout.
    • San Francisco Examiner
  73. Aiming to keep it real, the cast of the new dance casserole Center Stage sweats spunk.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 0 Critic Score
    Unfortunately, the contemporary horror movie has ceased being an individual work full of surprises and fresh manifestations of the Gothic imagination - it has, instead, been reduced to the level of an inflexible, repetitious, ritualistic event.
  74. This is a prodigious something. It's just difficult to say whether that something is good or evil.
  75. Spiritually it's a John Woo-George Romero-Jim Thompson picture, outrageously bloody and weird.
  76. Feels like it could go blow up at any time. It implodes instead, and the meltdown, though visible in one of the final sequences, is still corrosive.
  77. A football epic on performance enhancers that may be more flagrantly flawed, more shockingly predictable and just plain cornier than its rickety predecessors.
  78. Eastwood is perfect as the bad guy (a thief) you root for.
  79. Ineptly written and shot like a fashion mag, rings hollow throughout. It's a long, long way from "Jules and Jim."
  80. Between fights, the film can't even rely on the luxury of Lindo, Isaiah Washington, Russell Wong, Rottweiler rapper DMX or the scary Henry O as Han's father to make it watchable - the dialogue is wreaking more havoc than Li.
  81. This movie has everything.
  82. The movie's coda is completely ridiculous and, worse yet, boring.
  83. In Winona Ryder's case, Girl Interrupted is a showcase in which her brittle, angry portrait shows she has graduated from ingenue to actress.
    • San Francisco Examiner
    • 51 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Jingoistic politics are not proper or prudent in the pluralistic human society of the 1990s. It's much easier to assuage these baser urges by facing a real nonhuman enemy that just wants to kill you. War is gore. You or them. That message is the real strength of "Starship Troopers," although many may find it morally flawed. No matter, this is powerful entertainment that appeals to our most basic instincts.
  84. Except for the casting, it would be difficult to find any substantial difference between this movie and the previous ones, or this movie and any number of high-tech adventure movies of the last decade.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 25 Critic Score
    And once, just once, I'd love to see a teen flick that doesn't send out a message to young girls that to be acceptable, you have to conform. I liked the artist girl much better before.
  85. Austin is funny, extremely funny, because he is so ridiculous, and because Myers is a brilliant mimic who, like Martin Short, knows how to do ridiculous.
  86. A lazy, torpid piece of animated tourism.
  87. Regardless of how cheated out of a full-bodied motion picture you feel, you're still left with the year's sickest bathroom humor.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Unfortunately, all the good parts didn't add up to a great movie.

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