Slant Magazine's Scores

For 2,845 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 33% higher than the average critic
  • 2% same as the average critic
  • 65% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 9.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 53
Highest review score: 100 Museum Hours
Lowest review score: 0 Movie 43
Score distribution:
2,845 movie reviews
  1. Aleksei German's final film is choreographed with a Felliniesque social grandeur, but tethered to a neorealist's eye for detail and quotidian matters of social justice.
  2. Béla Tarr is the cinema's greatest crafter of total environments and in The Turin Horse, working in his most restricted physical setting since 1984's Almanac of Fall, he (along with co-director Ágnes Hranitzky) dials up one of his most vividly immersive milieus.
  3. Jem Cohen's film finds its most salient tension in the fraught relationship between known and unknown objects.
    • 91 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Christian Petzold never luxuriates in all this film history, but rather channels the artifice and affect it embodies into new insights.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Scarecrow embraces sprawl of both the narrative and geographical variety with freewheeling abandon.
  4. Every beautiful, resonant image in writer-director Alex Ross Perry's film is fraught with neurotic, diaphanous riddles.
    • 78 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The pangs of romance, eroticism, anguish, and longing (both for the stolen moments of private passion and for the sense-making schematics of Empire) transcend any period of cinema Tabu may evoke.
  5. It resembles a satirical treatise of self-reflection, functioning simultaneously as a summation of Bruno Dumont's thematic interests over the previous two decades and as a bonkers remake of Humanité.
  6. In the Mood For Love is ravishing beyond mortal words.
  7. Adam Wingard's You're Next brazenly merges the home-invasion thriller with the dysfunctional family dramedy.
  8. Her
    A screwball surrealist comedy that asks us to laugh at an unconventional romance while also disarming us with the realization that its fantasy scenario isn't too far from our present reality.
  9. Much like the work of generational cohort Michael Robinson, Alex Ross Perry's films are steeped in a viscous cultural past.
  10. It takes cojones for a filmmaker to chase Fassbinder's ghost, but it takes heart and talent to damn near catch up with it.
  11. Even if Hayao Miyazaki's career is complete, a work like this serves to remind us of the shining beacons he's left behind him, the testaments to pursuing beauty in the face of so much ugliness, themselves lasting reminders of the quiet rewards of determination.
  12. The film is a singularly huge, relentless, all-encompassing set piece that mutates and spasms with terrifying lack of foresight. It's all business, business, business.
    • 85 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The Long Day Closes posits its pubescent protagonist as a tiny camera absorbing and transforming the reality all around him.
  13. One of the most distinct pleasures of Beginners is the way it puts together fragments of someone's life-presumably the filmmaker's, although little does it matter-with humility, and without vying for some complete whole.
    • 80 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The doc positions The Shining as a comparably coiled, thematically overflowing microcosm--standing in for cinema, for history, for obsession, for postmodern theory buckling under the film's heft.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Even when the band plays away from private eyes or songs simply play over disconnected footage of them having fun, the strength of their songcraft is stirring.
  14. The dangers of filmmakers trying to replicate a golden era rather than embrace the present are part and parcel of Inherent Vice, but the ramifications are political as well.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Not only a monstrous visual achievement, but one of the most uniquely humanistic animated features of all time.
  15. Throughout, what truly matters to director Jonathan Glazer is articulating through visual and aural enticement the unconscious power of our death drive.
    • 88 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The film's vision of masculine self-sufficiency is built around--and on, via Australia's own bloody colonial history--an elemental violence.
  16. This insane masterpiece shows the self-destructive properties of myth making and how they overlap with the downfall of a community damned from the beginning of time.
  17. A movie which sits at the nexus between spoken and written language, the latter mostly of the programming variety.
  18. As depicted by Jia Zhang-ke, the balance between the spoils and moral rot of murder are far preferable to the debasing rigors of tradition and hollow nationalism.
  19. To hell with equivocation or beating around the bush: Terrence Malick's 1978 Days of Heaven is the greatest film ever made. And let the word film be emphasized, since Malick's sophomore masterpiece earns this exalted designation from its position as a work of pure cinema. [22 Oct. 2007]
  20. The Nine Muses is the kind of nonfiction film I actively hope for: a picture of intuitive, free-associational power that cuts far deeper emotionally than a dry recitation of dates and facts could ever hope to.
  21. An acutely felt, altogether devastating family drama as intimate and affecting as it is sprawling and untamed.
  22. Level Five pictorializes the cruel moment when curiosity encounters tragedy, and the all-too-human abandonment of interest that can follows.
  23. Rob Zombie understands horror as an aural-visual experience that should gnaw at the nerves, seep into the subconscious, and beget unshakeable nightmares.
  24. Those who find Rohmer heroines difficult - that is, demanding because they are three-dimensional, non-formulaic creations with an intricate set of foibles and needs - might even be won over by the depth and poignancy of Delphine, one of its maker's most generously etched characters.
  25. Deep End is as soaked in pheromones and nervous electricity as Mike, but he's as much a product of the world of desire that surrounds him as one of its participants, and when the end finally comes, there's only a reprise of earlier dream imagery to suggest that there was anything other than a spasmodic, hormonal twitch involved in bringing about its conclusion.
  26. Cinema is a vernacular of domination, and quaking with revelations both formal and personal, the film attests that Godard has spent his career apologizing for it.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    Leviathan is a titanic achievement, a visceral overload whose impact registers immediately and with great force.
  27. Like the movie itself, every character is a beautiful swirl of contradictions.
  28. Tsai isn't making a social-problem film here, and his critique of patriarchal control is secondary to his portrait of unbearable psychic conditions.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    It captures a kind of essential form of self-expression (and pleasure) that exceeds categorization, creating a shared experience between the musicians, the filmmakers, and the viewer that feels sublime.
  29. Don't let the women's smirks and wordplay fool you: The fact that art is eternal often makes it more horrifying than life itself.
  30. Tomboy is one of those little big films whose simplicity and concision suggest the excess of meaning that language (cinematic or otherwise) could never account for.
  31. Fervently passionate and formally meticulous, the latest stunning coup for a director who's made a career of repurposing archetypal storylines.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    A brief history of time and space, according to Bertrand Bonello.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    An ordinary drama embellished and in some sense infringed on by genre elements rather than the other way around.
  32. Alain Guiraudie's film portrays cruising as a danger-seeking and astoundingly repetitive affair, intimately linked to death itself.
  33. It's in his generous, objective use of long shots and spare but startling close-ups that we see once again the influence of Robert Altman in Yang's aesthetic and the struggle of the Taiwanese people to accept their history. In essence, Yang uses his aesthetic to bring into the light that which is dark.
  34. The film's criticism isn't primarily rooted in satire, but rather in fury and condemnation for those who seek to be gods while shamefully feigning to follow and praise one god.
    • 100 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    As befits a filmmaker who defined as well as challenged the definition of Italian neorealism, Voyage to Italy unfolds as a thorny narrative and a profoundly personal documentary.
  35. True to its title, the film approaches death as both narrative endpoint and formal focus, its initial vivacious mischief giving way to a Manichean fable about the waning of the light.
  36. Love it or hate it, it's doubtful you'll ever forget it, and it may just force you to redefine your definition of what constitutes "good" cinema.
  37. Costa's storytelling is illusory at best, but Horse Money's self-contradictions are communicated not via plot half as much as in scenography, even in the costuming.
  38. The film uses its male-on-male boundary-leaping to give the shopworn man-boy narrative a refresh.
  39. The film's 90 minutes are a disorienting cyclone of destructive incidents and propulsive energy.
  40. The plot is pure pulp, inspired in equal parts by the tropes and imagery of film noir, grand opera, and silent melodrama.
    • 74 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    The film becomes akin to variations on a theme, executed with visual finesse, and enhanced by its many rich textures.
  41. A ferocious plea for character salvation within a milieu where money and bodily affect are the raison d'être for human existence.
  42. A madly creative, darkly comical, and fiendishly self-aware actioner with muscle to spare.
  43. Alain Resnais's overpoweringly beautiful final film dares to push through the ghosts that inhabit the present, standing between the pessimism of an ill-spent past and the optimism of an undefined future.
  44. A scintillating sci-fi throwback, Vanishing Waves draws inspiration from Stanley Kubrick and Andrei Tarkovsky, among others, but without feeling plagiaristic.
    • 81 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Bond's latest is a remarkable high watermark for the series: at once solemn and deeply funny, sexy and sad, self-conscious without all the rib-bruising elbowing.
  45. One of its most refreshing aspects is its acceptance of both western and action-film conventions on their own terms, refusing to regard itself as operating outside of or superior to the genre.
  46. An unnerving, all-archival account of Philadelphia citizens suddenly terrorized by the unchecked violence of rogue "law and order."
    • 69 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Both a companion piece to and in many ways a reversal of "Dogtooth," it builds on that film's surreally terse style and notions of communication and identity without diluting its singularity or concentration.
  47. Manages to be intimate and impersonal at the same time, a trait constantly reinforced by his portrayal of not only Ceausescu but the populace he led, represented, and controlled for nearly three decades.
  48. Control is the operative element in Benoît Jacquot's work, with the main caveat being that when someone has it, someone else does not.
  49. The near-imperceptible finesse of Abby's characterization reflects writer-director Stacie Passon's effortless, interesting mix of richness and economy.
    • 82 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    For Carl Dreyer, to film a miracle took a single shot; for Bruno Dumont, a whole film. In Le Havre, Aki Kaurismäki needs four shots to capture his - and what an ordinary event it is!
  50. Tsai Ming-liang's debut makes one yearn for an alternative reality where it, not Pulp Fiction, became the beacon of '90s independent filmmaking.
  51. Asghar Farhadi's sensibility embodies a combination of empathy and paranoia that's striking considering that the latter is normally driven by self-absorption.
  52. Even Les Blank's most conventional work remains an elusive vision, punctuated by cultural insights that elude many filmmakers for their entire careers.
  53. The next step in Jafar Panahi's personal cinema of captivity, a fully fictionalized, wildly bewildering work which imagines a man at war with his own creative impulse.
  54. A barbed inquiry into this particular notion of "self-defense," enabled by the quotidian racism state and perpetuated de jure by the state.
  55. A documentary whatsit acutely aware of the inherent performance people put into social discourse to maintain appearances.
  56. The distinctiveness of Matías Piñeiro's alluring brand of formalism lies in this deference to chance and alchemy.
  57. "You should always be happy." That's a succinct encapsulation of the proudly optimistic spirit animating this joyous film, a worldview which the rest of Girl Walk // All Day illustrates with a combination of thrilling street ballet, exultant music, and unflagging verve.
    • 77 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    To Wong, love isn't something you can talk about; words are inadequate, empty, inevitably reductive. Love is something you see, sense, feel, and Chungking Express is one of Wong's purest evocations of its excitement and heartbreak.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    It can't be overstated just how Nothing But a Man is militantly tone-deaf to the Hollywood muzak of race relations.
  58. Johanna Hamilton's 1971 represents a mind-blowing scoop disguised as a fairly garden-variety issue doc.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Diamond-hard and dazzlingly brilliant, David Cronenberg's film plays like a deeply perverse, darkly comic successor to Videodrome.
  59. The film believes in maturity, but only as a freely continual process of acceptance.
  60. The film sympathetically renders the small humiliations and inconveniences of life as an old-world vampire struggling with modernity.
  61. It's a bit reductive in terms of a personal portrait, but this is a film that's not concerned with telling the story of a man, instead making him a representative symbol of a mostly bygone way of life, a reminder of both the fleeting nature of individual experience and the steady patterns of a broader human existence.
  62. A playfully self-reflective rumination on what writer-director Terence Nance has described as "self-awareness through experience with love."
    • 87 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Brief Encounters is great entertainment.
    • 72 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    JFK
    JFK still retains a primal power; no number of derivative, headache-inducing CSI episodes can blunt the impact of Stone's aggressive visuals, and the film's plea for accountability and honesty in government is as vital now as ever.
  63. Alice Winocour's take on this true story carries the superficial trappings of a period drama, but its perspective is entirely contemporary.
  64. Todd Kellstein doesn't allow you to entirely indulge convenient (though understandable and perhaps irresistible) armchair outrage.
  65. A lot of evil is laid on the table in El Sicario, and the film makes a big, if exquisitely subtle show, of theorizing that there's no way to explain how it got there.
  66. George Miller orchestrates the rubber-burning pandemonium with the illicit smirk of someone who knows he's giving us exactly what we want.
  67. Broomfield isn't so much dedicated to journalistic truth or social ethnography as he is displaying bodies and mindsets of individuals that complicate any sense of Manichean polemics, where good and evil must be reckoned with at a purely secular and corporeal level, particularly along the lines of class and gender.
  68. Frederick Wiseman's At Berkeley isn't only a study of the contemporary American university, but, like all of the filmmaker's best documentaries, a wide-ranging inquiry into the larger institutions and contradictions that define life in the United States.
  69. The film's peculiarly exhilarating effect can be attributed to a sense of social outrage that's transcended for the sake of metaphoric social clarity.
  70. No one corporation or person plans to trample over the wellbeing of the Ghanaian people, but as the story of the development progress, the breadth of Rachel Boynton's research shows how it will occur regardless.
  71. The thrill of watching Fletcher and Neyman's fray unfold is intensified by Damien Chazelle's attention to the craft and challenge of musicianship.
  72. Of Bennett Miller's many directorial feats, his canniest is his depiction of the precariousness of bonds, and how those bonds can shift, drastically yet almost imperceptibly.
  73. El Velador doesn't pass judgment or manipulate emotionally, instead choosing simply to consider the arduousness of survival in a land wracked by slaughter.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    In almost every respect, Extraterrestrial is an exceptional and traditional romantic comedy. It just happens to be set during an alien invasion.
  74. At this point in the franchise, Anderson is content to alight the saga on a perpetual rewind loop, ever-ending, ever-rebooting, all subsidized by his nonpareil compositional sense.
  75. In its stripped-down realism and blistering fixation on its main character's grappling with life and mortality, the film is kin to Roberto Rossellini's collaborations with Ingrid Bergman.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 88 Critic Score
    Other films of this ilk use widescreen composition to highlight a terrifying existential void, but these cramped frames tend to produce the nutty energy of cabin fever.
  76. Conditioning the audience to find dread in every seemingly innocent gesture, the film turns even the simplest touch between family members into something tinged with menace.

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