The A.V. Club's Scores

For 5,538 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 2.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 59
Highest review score: 100 Funny Games (2008)
Lowest review score: 0 The Other Sister
Score distribution:
5,538 movie reviews
  1. Dunmore creates a memorably grimy London, but the moral grime covering the film proves less memorable.
  2. Grandma's Boy aspires to nothing more than the frathouse goofiness and juvenile high spirits of early Sandler vehicles, but it possesses the energy of a funeral dirge played at half-speed.
  3. With minimal flare and maximal gore, Boll simply delivers the turgid drama and incompetently staged action sequences that have made him the unstoppable Big Boss of the gaming community.
  4. Okay, so when does the fun start?
  5. There may be nothing new under the sun, but there are at least films that dress up old tropes in new ways. This isn't one of them.
  6. A lot of The Break-Up doesn't work. Actually, apart from some funny moments between old Swingers sparring partners Favreau and Vaughn, and a nice scene with Jason Bateman as the couple's realtor, virtually none of it works.
  7. Though he labors endlessly to account for her behavior, which is explained away by flashbacks to her decadent parents and a glamorous mother-figure played under Vaseline lens by an uncredited Sandra Bullock, Bacon fails to make her seem human.
  8. It's seldom a good sign when a Rob Schneider cameo elevates a comedy, but Little Man aims so low and fires so often that it can't miss all the time.
  9. Arriving late to the scene, Another Gay Movie coughs up the same awkward gags about coming of age via false starts and sexual humiliation, only the genuine sweetness and camaraderie that made the first "Pie" movie bearable has been replaced by glib self-awareness.
  10. Turns a cultishly creepy classic into a dull and windy farce.
    • 19 Metascore
    • 33 Critic Score
    Okay, so it isn't challenging. There are worse things for a horror-thriller about supernatural high-schoolers to not be. Like not scary. Or not thrilling. Or not as entertaining as an episode of "Charmed."
  11. The movie's more damnable problem is it irrelevance.
  12. No one makes it out of this laughless mess unscathed.
  13. If there's anything sadder than a satire without teeth, it's a thriller without thrills. Even sadder is the rare movie that fails at both genres simultaneously. That, and that alone, makes Man Of The Year exceptional.
  14. There must be some solid marketing reason for putting out a Christmas movie before the jack o'lanterns have begun to rot, but if so, it's elusive. Couldn't this lump of coal have waited another month?
  15. Give Fitzgerald credit for ambition and good intentions, but for all its truth-to-power saber-rattling, 3 Needles is distressingly dim.
  16. It's the ultimate pop-culture sacrilege: a movie about soul music that has no soul.
  17. Whatever its model, the film is assembled from much poorer material, leftover parts of Lifetime movies and well-meaning indie films seen only on opening nights at some forgotten festival in Tampa.
  18. Stiller's continued efforts to court the broadest possible audience has taken the edge off his comedy. Whenever he shares screen time with Williams, it looks like the grim future he's mapping out for himself.
  19. It's a film for kids who want to know what headaches feel like.
  20. If there were a shred of sincerity to its straight-faced exposé of African strife, the film would be easier to forgive, but since it's really just a cheap horror-thriller about an ancient predator, the austere tone does it no favors.
  21. It's a rare moment when the STORY makes the point, not the speeches.
  22. At one point, David Cross tells Gurwitch to enjoy being unemployed, because "When you're fired, you're interesting." But as Fired! proves, that ain't necessarily so.
  23. Cage has some fun with the role, making Blaze a kind of Zen Elvis with a strange fixation on Carpenters songs, but the film's priorities lie with the digital effects and not the story, and even the effects aren't that hot.
  24. Pearce is usually dependable, but here, he's utterly unconvincing as a slick phony, and the film peddles a bogus bill of goods in kind.
  25. A PG-13 celebration of hot chicks, fast cars, and deplorable behavior is like diet Mountain Dew, near-beer, or an expletive-free version of Straight Outta Compton--a tame, watered-down version of the real thing.
  26. At least when they're singing, they aren't sniping and griping at each other. That original title really would have worked a lot better.
  27. The faux-documentary aspect of Radiant City is a huge gamble that doesn't pay off. If anything, the movie's observations about the corrupting social influence of cluttered mall spaces get undercut by the fact that Burns and Brown feel the need to INVENT characters to prove their truth.
  28. Krasinski knows how to play off Williams--his pained looks are all too appropriate in the face of Williams' desperate shtick--but it's disillusioning to see him here, because he seems too smart for this film.
  29. Thornton is one of America's finest actors, but after this, "Bad News Bears," and "School For Scoundrels," his run of loveably irascible authority-figure roles should probably come to a close. He's kicked around one child too many.
  30. Final score: Book 1, Movie 0.
  31. The emotions at play in Bella are no doubt heartfelt--and must have resonated with a few hundred people, anyway--but they're so cut-and-dried that the mawkish script virtually writes itself.
  32. So instead of history and drama, we get images, many of them striking but none of them memorable, and noise that deafens until no sense can escape. The events beg for Shakespearean gravity, but the only tragedy here is that so little could be made of so much.
  33. No doubt the list of talent involved in this remake sounded great, but the project hasn't been thought through as anything more than an arch exercise in style. And even in that trifling end, it fails utterly.
  34. The result is either one of the most self-indulgent vanity projects in the history of the Hollywood star system, or a rare revealing look at a distinguished actor who usually keeps his real self out of the spotlight.
  35. Simultaneously swooningly romantic and transcendently idiotic.
  36. By the time Olyphant leaves an enemy in the most ridiculous deathtrap since the '60s "Batman," just because it looks kinda neat, the whole project has started to feel like "Ultraviolet 2: The Further Stupidening."
  37. It's neither conceptually bold nor slyly satirical when Billy dresses up as a Southern evangelical and sings made-up hymns about "the shopacalypse."
  38. Only the so-bad-it's-good crowd need apply.
  39. It's a measure of the film's lack of imagination that Morris Chestnut, as an aspiring songwriter logging time as a mall Santa, can't even think of a good fake occupation.
  40. The characters Lehmann and company use as generational mouthpieces bear no relation to any people who have ever existed, and they barely work as parody.
  41. West is heavy on Vaughn, at least initially, but woefully short on comedy.
  42. Browns is ultimately a victim of its creator's success: What once felt novel now feels well-worn, following the success of Perry's films and imitators like "First Sunday."
  43. This isn't really a movie made for audiences; it's for casting agents and studio execs, to show off one man's acting chops and his skill at writing dialogue.
  44. Perelman's follow-up, The Life Before Her Eyes, finds him clumsily trying to outdo M. Night Shyamalan.
  45. Shyamalan still has an abundance of personality and ambition, and there are scattered moments of craft throughout, but the gulf between his lofty aspirations and feeble accomplishments has seldom been wider or more chuckle-inducing.
  46. Myers combines his love of references, silly names, and mindless repetition by having his guru use "Mariska Hargitay" as a greeting/mantra. The first time it's employed, it's merely unfunny; by the 13th or 40th time, it's almost hypnotic in its awfulness.
  47. Taken together, these stories are a symphony of inconsequentiality, drained of tension and purpose until all that remains is a vague sense of collective ennui.
  48. Maher's too smart to make a movie this dumb.
  49. As long it sticks to that chase, Babylon A.D. remains a sub-passable lead-footed action film with neat scenery.
  50. Dane Cook plays a smug jerk in the dismal comedy My Best Friend's Girl. Strike that: He's only ACTING like a smug jerk.
  51. The original was a tart dipped in acid; this one's a biscuit sprinkled in Splenda.
  52. The film looks to do for reflective surfaces what "Amityville 4" did for killer lamps.
  53. Mainly, Good Dick just proves that TV actors like Ritter make good indie-film hires, because they'll go along with whatever ridiculous nonsense a novice filmmaker concocts.
  54. It's a horror film better suited for skittish cats than humans.
  55. It takes guts to remake what many believe to be Hitchcock's first masterpiece, but what Ondaatje's done with The Lodger could not be mistaken for ambition.
  56. Clumsy, ephemeral, and wholly unnecessary.
  57. It's now a straight-up crime and retribution flick, capped off by the dumbest wolf-feeding coda a 13-year-old ever dreamed up.
  58. As a piece of storytelling, The Haunting In Connecticut is pretty lazy. As a horror movie, it’s lazier still, bringing out every annoying shock-cut and disorienting sound-design trick of the last decade.
  59. Even the movie's rubber monsters look tired.
  60. It doesn't help that neither Ferrell nor McBride bring their best material, with McBride offering yet another variation on an angry redneck, and Ferrell falling back on Ron Burgundy-like bluster and nonsense exclamations.
  61. If director Jaume Collet-Serra (House Of Wax) set out to make a parody of horror-film clichés, he succeeded brilliantly.
  62. In short, this is a movie about bruised people bruising each other, and if Downloading Nancy had more of an openly pulpy sensibility, then the repugnant premise might’ve had some lasting impact.
  63. Nowrasteh constantly overplays his hand, not realizing that some horrors speak for themselves.
  64. Features a running gag about a little boy in the midst of potty training who doesn’t always go where it’s appropriate. In a nutshell, that subplot explains everything that’s wrong about the film.
  65. When a film whose cast includes Michael Keaton, Jane Lynch, Fred Armisen, Craig Robinson, Demetri Martin, and the now rarely seen Carol Burnett can’t scare up more than a smattering of laughs, the patient was never meant to live in the first place.
  66. About Piven: When did it go wrong? When did the caustic character actor guaranteed to liven up even the dullest movie turn into a walking black hole of smarm from which no joy can escape?
  67. This isn’t a movie. It’s a MySpace page.
  68. In a squandered lead performance, the adorable, winning Schwartzman plays the non-adorable, non-winning title character.
  69. Throw out the presence of Dennis Quaid, and the new science-fiction/horror snoozer Pandorum could easily pass for a Roger Corman cheapie.
  70. Cody’s script fails in the fundamentals.
  71. A cartoonishly grim supernatural thriller that could stand a lot less talk and a lot more thrills.
    • 28 Metascore
    • 33 Critic Score
    Crammed with so much deliberate tackiness that it borders on exhausting self-parody.
  72. The characters in The Burning Plain are so narrowly defined by tragedy that they reveal no other facets of humanity.
  73. The bitter comedy Serious Moonlight is meant to be both funny and painful, but manages only the latter.
  74. With Cop Out, Smith works from a script other than his own for the first time--this one penned by siblings Mark and Robb Cullen--but his slack direction siphons the energy out of this tongue-in-cheek throwback to ’80s mismatched-buddy comedies.
  75. Rock acquits himself nicely as the responsible brother and resident straight man, but everyone else in the cast has apparently been advised to mug shamelessly and yell their lines as loudly as possible.
  76. Few of the scenes in The Perfect Game feel authentic, but the ones in Monterrey are especially lacking in flavor.
  77. Bratt’s character is stuck in old ways of thinking, and the movie, for all its well-meaning social intent, is right there with him.
  78. A painfully earnest drama about post-traumatic stress disorder that sticks so closely to the soldiers-coming-home template, writer-director Ryan Piers Williams seems to be diligently working through a checklist of returning-warrior-movie clichés.
  79. On balance, more dignity is lost than gained.
  80. This sluggishly paced quirkfest is awfully sophomoric for a film all about giving up the facile thrills of youth for the responsibilities of adulthood.
  81. As for the 3-D, much ballyhooed in the film's advertisements, it's another muddy conversion that does little but make the film's unconvincing blood effects look a little darker. It's good, theoretically at least, to have Craven back. But why come back for this?
  82. The film isn't erotic or profound. It is occasionally comic, though-like reading the finalists for one of those Bad Sex In Fiction awards.
  83. Disney has once again constructed a digital environment out of cutting-edge special effects, only this time, it isn't merely silly; it's as dry and talky as a PBS panel show.
  84. Spacey has made a career out of projecting the smarmy elitism of the powerful, but Casino Jack is so painfully clunky that he gets dragged down along with it.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 33 Critic Score
    The film's premise-that Bieber achieved his superstardom through years of hard work overcoming towering obstacles-is so ludicrously flawed that everything built upon it borders on self-parody.
  85. It's loud, relentless, and difficult to endure, capturing the experience of ground-level alien warfare with woeful verisimilitude.
  86. Hop
    Candy-coated or otherwise, crap's still crap.
  87. A grating muddle.
  88. The film is curiously sterile and lifeless, hardly the stuff of revolution. It feels more like an ideologically reversed "Tucker: The Man And His Dream," written and performed by robots.
  89. Everything is pitched to jarring emotional extremes of good and evil, joy and pain, chitlin'-circuit broad comedy, and melodramatic speeches.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 33 Critic Score
    It's a dogged family entertainment determined to teach lessons about tolerance and how it should be extended to everyone, even redheads, gay people, and kids with cooties.
  90. Peter Stormare has fun engaging in some Walken-level scenery-chewing-almost literally-as the patriarch of a werewolf clan. Good for him. That means at least one person has found something to like about this tedious collection of wisecracks and hand-me-down monsters.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 33 Critic Score
    Certainly looks lavish, from the battle scenes to the beautiful period costuming, but it's so stilted and humorless that it's almost campy.
  91. Bettany's performance consists entirely of a purposeful frown paired with a menacing glare: He goes about his godly business with solemn, no-frills intensity. The film follows suit.
  92. A film so utterly lacking in conviction, it needs a 25-year-old Tom Cruise vehicle just to keep its spine straight.
    • 53 Metascore
    • 33 Critic Score
    Mr. Popper's Penguins reins in its rubber-faced star, leaving most of the rote physical comedy (and overabundance of fart jokes) to his nonhuman counterparts, comprised of a combination of CGI and real penguins.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 33 Critic Score
    Infuriatingly navel-gazing and insubstantial.
  93. Monte Carlo finally resolves itself in a farcical climax that at least shows a little energy, but it isn't enough to overcome the discomfiting tensions and indifferent formula filmmaking that plagues nearly every scene.

Top Trailers