The A.V. Club's Scores

For 5,985 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 49% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.3 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 City of God
Lowest review score: 0 Fired Up!
Score distribution:
5,985 movie reviews
  1. Capote begins as a sprawling, vivacious comedy-drama in which Hoffman's Capote is only one of a number of fascinating characters, including Chris Cooper's upstanding, ramrod-straight lawman and Keener's tough, blunt assistant/sidekick/foil/author.
  2. A beautifully choreographed and photographed story about tradition and modernity in rural Asia.
  3. More "Full Metal Jacket" than "Dead Poet’s Society," the film is an epic battle of wills between two fanatical artists, one doing everything in his power to painfully make a master out of the other.
  4. A Film Unfinished is affecting as a rare document of a terrible place and time, and those who lived there.
  5. Anderson’s latest invention, The Grand Budapest Hotel, may be his most meticulously realized, beginning with the towering, fictional building for which it’s named.
  6. Epics tend to get extra respect — bonus points for ambition, one might say — and while Ceylan’s film is a decidedly intimate example of the genre, it was clearly perceived, in advance, as an important work just by virtue of its sheer heft.
  7. Explicit lesbian lovemaking aside, Blue is, at heart, a somewhat ordinary coming-of-age romance, pulled and stretched nearly to its breaking point.
  8. Citizenfour offers a remarkably intimate look at history as it happened. In fact, the immediacy of Poitras’ film is so remarkable that, at least for the immediate future, her craft is likely to be overshadowed by her access, her storytelling overshadowed by her opportunity.
  9. Cantet's masterful study of a white-collar businessman in decline.
  10. Has its heartbreaking moments and its surprise giggles, particularly thanks to Ron Hewat's minor role as a former hockey play-by-play announcer now narrating his nursing-home life.
  11. From an emotional standpoint, it's enormously satisfying, even cathartic to watch Ferguson "nail" some of the rogues behind the economic crisis with the unseemly zeal of Stephen Colbert on The Colbert Report.
  12. What makes Towers so staggering is the way it brings the full scope of Jackson's adaptation into focus. Without missing a beat in three hours, the film shifts from epic to lyrical and back.
  13. The King's Speech is admirably free of easy answers and simple, happy endings; it's a skewed, awards-ready version of history, but one polished to a fine, satisfying shine.
  14. It is grotesque and deranged and Hieronymus Bosch-like, and damn if it isn’t a bona fide vision — but of what, exactly?
  15. Up
    Up is challenging, emotionally and narratively, but it trusts viewers to keep up; Pixar has never been interested in talking down to children or their parents.
  16. For Michael Keaton, Birdman is some kind of gift from the movie gods, a license to have his cake and messily devour it too.
  17. Loosely structured around four seasons, Nobody Knows unfolds in a long series of episodes that slowly progress from lightly comic to bracingly sad as the situation deteriorates.
  18. L'Enfant is intended as a pointed critique of pop culture's celebration of arrested adolescence. The title could refer to Renier's baby, Renier himself, or even the gang of schoolboy robbers that he's gathered around himself.
  19. Delivers the goods, if the goods you're in the market for happen to be a clever romance concerning William Shakespeare that's unlikely to cause anyone to reassess their notions of Shakespeare, romance, or enjoyment.
  20. The Missing Picture might have felt academic, even coldly removed, were it not for its scathing narration, penned by Panh (with Christophe Bataille) and read by Randal Douc.
  21. Gomorrah takes place in a world where decency can't take root and we can only watch in horror as crime overwhelms society's most vulnerable-- women, children, law-abiding citizens, and the conscientious few who want to get out of the game.
  22. An early shot of two turtles crawling through the classroom establishes the film's deliberate pace, and To Be And To Have benefits from the care.
  23. Listen To Me Marlon suffers from an atrocious score that frequently sounds like it belongs in a useless Oscar montage, and it doesn’t reveal much about Brando that cinephiles don’t already know. But the man himself is endlessly fascinating, so it’s hard to fault a movie that ditches anything extraneous (especially talking-head testimonials) in order to let him tell his own story in his own words.
  24. The film’s surface is as spiky as its protagonists’ hair and wardrobe, but the overall effect can only be described as downright endearing.
  25. The humor edges against absurdism, but stays self-aware and witty, with that mild-mannered optimism presiding.
  26. It's an austere Russian drama with shades of Hitchcock.
  27. Arguably, the performance is too single-minded to achieve real greatness, but its utter lack of showmanship is precisely what the movie requires; at its best, All Is Lost could almost be a documentary about survival at sea, though it’s more starkly elemental than even nature documentaries usually get.
  28. Director Sidney Lumet (working from a screenplay by Waldo Salt and Norman Wexler) chooses not to press the superheroic aspect of his protagonist. Serpico is more street-level, tracing a decade of NYPD change--and refusal to change--through an episodic, often elliptical structure.
  29. Grim but never gratuitous.
  30. Fateless is a strangely beautiful film, enhanced by a typically lyrical Ennio Morricone score and by Koltai's hazy, grayed-out images.

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