The A.V. Club's Scores

For 6,663 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 50% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 47% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 The Apostle
Lowest review score: 0 Soul Men
Score distribution:
6663 movie reviews
  1. What the film lacks in specificity and interest in taking sides, it makes up for in style, authentic emotion, and terrific performances.
  2. Resnais’ new film, You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet, is ostensibly an adaptation of two unrelated plays by Jean Anouilh: "Eurydice" (1941) and "Dear Antoine": Or, "The Love That Failed" (1971). However, Resnais’ methods of adaptation — placing one play within the other, and then refracting its dialogue across multiple characters and layers of reality — quickly eclipse the source material.
  3. Anyone who enjoys overpowering cinematic sensation and watching people do a job will be predisposed to like Leviathan, Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Véréna Paravel’s avant-garde documentary about life aboard a commercial fishing vessel. Leviathan is an immersive experience, plunging viewers into darkness and chaos, amid a rush of vivid color and rapid movement.
  4. This film doesn’t lionize Weiner or justify anything he did. What it does is capture the frenzy of politics, the iron-clad egos of politicians, and the failure of the media to cover the parts of campaigning and government that actually matter.
  5. If there’s any fault to find in this expertly directed, frequently hilarious study of imploding male ego, it’s that Östlund basically arrives upon a perfect ending — one that brings the movie full circle, both dramatically and visually — and then bypasses it in favor of a more muddled one. But as climactic missteps go, it’s not exactly disastrous.
  6. What’s special about Logan is that it manages to deliver the visceral goods, all the hardcore Wolverine action its fans could desire, while still functioning as a surprisingly thoughtful, even poignant drama—a terrific movie, no “comic-book” qualifier required.
  7. Everything an action-comedy should be. It achieves through parody what most films in the genre can't accomplish straight.
  8. The power to provoke may not always have a smoke-to-fire relationship with greatness but with Scorsese's film, a testament of faith that leaves in the question marks, it undeniably does.
  9. Timberlake himself is a stunner, whether he’s smoothly pirouetting his way through “Suit & Tie” or he’s choking back tears during his stirring set closer “Mirrors.” But his team is well-matched by Demme’s.
  10. For all the chaos erupting at all times, we never lose track of what’s going on, because it’s been staged not just with diabolical mischief, but also total clarity. What a movie.
  11. Polley’s fledgling foray into documentary filmmaking is also an investigative mystery, a real-life soap opera, and — most compellingly, perhaps — a searching “interrogation” (the director’s word) of the hows and whys of storytelling itself.
  12. What’s more, it’s fun, generating pleasure not from canned jokes or clichéd plot twists but simply from a sense of unhindered freedom.
  13. In the end, Black Book may be one of the most fun movies ever made about how people basically suck.
  14. Slumdog Millionaire features the simplest story Boyle has ever told, which may explain why its many pleasures are so pure.
  15. If The Love Witch simply raised the profile of its director, Anna Biller — a true auteur who not only wrote, directed, produced, and edited this film but also designed and hand made its sets and costumes — then it would be a success.
  16. It's mysterious and bold at every turn, and refreshingly removed from the commonplace.
  17. War Witch is a remarkably mature portrait that trusts its audience to have their own reactions to its material; it doesn’t yank at the heartstrings so much as expertly strum them.
  18. Skyfall doesn't forget it has to be an exciting spy film above all, but from its first scene, it ratchets up the drama in ways that have little to do with action.
  19. What distinguishes Starless Dreams is Oskouei’s voice, heard from off screen, getting these girls to be honest about where they’ve come from and why they’re less than anxious to return.
  20. What the two actors lack in vocal polish they make up for in commitment — and chemistry. La La Land is the third film to romantically pair Gosling and Stone, after "Crazy, Stupid, Love" and "Gangster Squad," and that history of onscreen relationships fortifies their playful rapport:
    • 77 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    The film's strength lies in just how far it's willing to go-and to not go-in the pursuit of mythologizing its subject, a group of aging but unrepentant punks who treat the very idea of mythology like a bad joke.
  21. This movie offers the kind of effortless Euro-adventure, full and fleet, that Steven Spielberg tried and mostly failed to deliver with his big-screen The Adventures Of Tintin.
  22. Many will guess the resolution of Michael and Lisa’s affair well in advance. That scarcely matters, though, given how beautifully distinctive Anomalisa is from moment to moment.
  23. There's genuine pain at the core of Heidecker's character - or at least a numbness where the pain used to reside - but the film is keen on obscuring it.
  24. Yet another celebrity-voiced animal adventure, but it stands out from the crowd of similar films with its lightning wit and whirlwind brio.
  25. In many respects, Adam and Eve are nocturnal cousins to the angels from Wim Wenders’ "Wings Of Desire": They’re secret observers of history, living records of the past with little control over the future. But Jarmusch has no interest in the kind of guilt and grief Wenders wove through his movie; Only Lovers comes in a hipper, sexier shade of melancholy.
    • 71 Metascore
    • 91 Critic Score
    One Lucky Elephant would make an affecting pairing with James Marsh's upcoming "Project Nim," another film about an animal treated like a human until its essential wildness made that impossible.
  26. Again as with Bong's earlier films, Mother is a genre exercise that honors convention, yet weaves around it whenever possible. Bong carefully turns Mother into a classic gumshoe tale, with red herrings, interrogations, and moments of sublime suspense.
  27. Louder Than A Bomb is a different kind of high-school movie, brimming with life and hope instead of social-climbing, bullying, and furtive first kisses.
  28. It's the most glorious, wonderful mess put onscreen since Terry Gilliam's "Brazil."

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