The A.V. Club's Scores

For 7,045 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 2.5 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 61
Highest review score: 100 Gerry
Lowest review score: 0 The Hottie & the Nottie
Score distribution:
7045 movie reviews
  1. Once Milk And Honey stops lurching after huge, actorly moments of near-psychotic intensity, it loosens up and actually gets around to telling a reasonably compelling human story.
  2. The film comes to life whenever the cartoonishly vindictive Gong throws a tantrum, but she played virtually the same role in Zhang Yimou's "Shanghai Triad," which presented a far more compelling rationale for her star fits. Without her, this expensive piece of backlot pageantry turns vivid history into an ossified tchotchke.
  3. Someone as attuned as Varda to the quality of an image should know that a flat, disposable medium like video makes images harder to internalize.
  4. Fast-paced, and entertaining in a soapy way, but plot demands require almost all of the dialogue to be flatly descriptive.
  5. Looks and sounds better than the average indie film debut.
  6. The film's deep, precise colors, which look like they belong in a Peter Greenaway movie, are Berlin Babylon's first major surprise. The second is how watchable it is, given its obsessive focus on buildings.
  7. A sprint when it should be a marathon, Yossi & Jagger crackles with promise, but much of it goes unrealized. Without the time or resources to develop its characters and overstuffed plot, the result feels like the Cliffs Notes for a longer, more satisfying film.
  8. Makes effective drama, but ultimately it's just an outrage machine, designed to get the viewer fired up by the sight of warring ideologues preaching to their own.
  9. There are no surprises in Dreamer--except that for all its visible and unselfconscious schmaltz, it's actually pretty enjoyable.
  10. Moreau is magnetic as the wise-but-neurotic scribe, though the same can't be said of Demarigny, whose timid portrayal of a reverent fanboy sucks the energy out of most of his scenes. Dayan's direction is even more problematic.
  11. Even if it weren't a remake, The Italian Job would still look startlingly unoriginal, but in a summer that promises plenty of sold-out showings, it could be the season's breakout pretty-okay-second-choice film.
  12. La Petite Lili isn't conventional or crowd-pleasing enough to appeal to audiences who like their foreign films safely sentimental, but it's also not daring enough for those who expect art to hurt a little.
  13. Becomes precisely the sort of film its elements demand. As tearful goodbyes and joyful montage sequences set to lite-jazz saxophoning take over, "neatly winsome" trumps "messy drama" yet again.
  14. But de Heer's high-concept feminist tract loses some of its integrity over time, as it slowly devolves into a seedy, voyeuristic thriller that takes all too much pleasure in turning the screws.
  15. Shou focuses on a meaty subject, and he has an insider's access to the world he's exploring. But his behind-the-scenes film doesn't spend nearly enough time behind the scenes.
  16. The second Pierce Brosnan-fronted James Bond movie settles into the groove of unspectacular convention-adhering that has marked the series for the last couple of decades.
  17. There's a terrific short film somewhere inside Mark Moskowitz's feature-length documentary Stone Reader. Unfortunately, it's buried within a flabby 128-minute slog that feels like a rough draft nobody had the heart to edit down.
  18. Its gloomy speculations on the ephemeral nature of art are paradoxically not easily forgotten, and Godard's daring again pays off, or at least comes close enough to get credit for trying.
  19. Be Cool more often evokes the image of a screenwriter furiously trying draft after draft to accommodate all the stars. Accommodating the audience becomes a distant priority.
  20. Escape From L.A. is a mild letdown. It repeats the basic plot of the original, with a lighter tone, cheaper-looking (yet actually more expensive) special effects, and a grunge soundtrack.
  21. The General's Daughter isn't a poorly made or acted film, but it's so shallow, hypocritical, and sleazy that it's difficult not to find it repulsive.
  22. For a while, it's a dark, insubstantial treat.
  23. Cleverly realizing a novel premise, it's a slight but charming look at the lighter side of WWII.
  24. Both the actor and the character deserve a better movie, one that might have channeled the latter's desires into more than just a few rote genre thrills.
  25. Contains enough exciting surf scenes that it could almost get by on visceral thrills alone.
  26. It boldly subverts stereotypes and challenges conventional wisdom by presenting affable Korean and Indian antiheroes who are just as sex-crazed, irresponsible, mischief-prone, and chemically altered as their white counterparts.
  27. The unimposing Fiennes may not suggest the burly Luther's plain-talking peasant background, but he at least captures the charisma.
  28. Cinematographer Italo Petriccione gives the film a dramatic look, but that never compensates for the lack of actual drama; when so much of the conflict concerns Cristiano's reluctance to betray his father, it might have helped to spend more time on exploring that relationship than on capturing what light looks like when it pours in from a cellar door.
  29. Sure, it quickly turns into a one-note exercise in laughing at the yokels, but at least it has a vision.
  30. During his clumsiest moments, Davis' fondness for provocation rises to the surface, which is unfortunate, since it weakens the impact of his many salient points about how American men are socialized to be warriors.

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