The Dissolve's Scores

  • Movies
For 1,474 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 34% higher than the average critic
  • 6% same as the average critic
  • 60% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 7.6 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 55
Highest review score: 100 The Long Day Closes
Lowest review score: 0 The Word
Score distribution:
1474 movie reviews
  1. Much of the observational brilliance of Approaching The Elephant comes from how closely form relates to content: Out of chaos comes order, both at Teddy McArdle and in the film, which brings the personalities and conflicts into sharper focus as it goes along.
  2. Neither Molina nor Lithgow are stranger to big performances, but here, they offer studies in restraint, underplaying dramatic moments in ways that make them all the more powerful.
  3. Even when the plot kicks in and the stakes get raised, there’s a casualness to Guiraudie’s approach that’s singular and admirably defiant of genre expectations. He’s setting a scene. Tension insinuates itself later.
  4. George Washington is a mood piece first, and its triumph is in bottling up the intense feeling of early adolescence, and watching how tragedy transforms it.
  5. It’s easier to tell the story of a smashing success or an utter failure, because there’s drama inherent to either scenario, but what Hansen-Løve accomplishes with Eden is trickier, a feeling of being adrift in a scene where people are already invited to lose themselves to dance.
  6. There’s a real fascination in watching the gears of this massive machine grind. Once the student protest comes to dominate the film’s second half, however, things get dicier.
  7. Wadjda is an object of stark beauty, an oasis of free-spirited cinema emerging from the desert.
  8. It’s a big leap forward for Rock as both an actor and a filmmaker, written and directed with the nervous, live-wire energy that has eluded his on-screen work for so long.
  9. The film is essentially a war of attrition between emotion and pragmatism, the rare thriller fueled by stress rather than speed.
  10. Director Bennett Miller and screenwriters E. Max Frye and Dan Futterman have thought through every scene and every line in Foxcatcher. Nothing is irrelevant. The film proceeds like a well-constructed argument.
  11. Little about [Östlund’s] work is simple-minded or cut-and-dried. His films marinate in viewer discomfort.
  12. The film sometimes seems to get lost in self-admiration and its own melancholy mood. Still, Amirpour maintains that mood exquisitely well.
  13. The two halves of Closed Curtain complement each other, but the first is more compelling than the second, partly because the mysteries of construction trump the grind of deconstruction, and partly because Panahi channeled his anguish more directly and affectingly with This Is Not A Film.
  14. For the most part, Pigeon is very much in the same mold as its two predecessors, which is part of the problem.
  15. As director Dominique Benicheti invites the audience to contemplate this way of life—and that’s all the film seeks to accomplish, which is plenty—he reveals the virtues of simplicity, routine, and quietly communing with the natural world.
  16. It all serves a portrait of 1970 California that mixes absurdity with an air of looming cataclysm, a volatile formula that wouldn’t work without Phoenix’s performance.
  17. The most tremendous thing about Starred Up is exactly how simple it keeps things, and what a richly nuanced story emerges in the process.
  18. As in all of Wright’s films, the surface is just as satisfying as the subtext: hilarious comedy, compelling character drama, eye-popping visuals, and a juicy science-fiction story.
  19. Norte is the rare film where the characters seem simpler the longer we spend time with them. They’re humans that evolve into types.
  20. Thanks to remarkable access to her subject, and a refusal to turn away during even the most personal moments, Karasawa has made something deeper: a portrait of Stritch just as the aging process is beginning to punch holes in her concrete dam of a personality.
  21. When I Walk makes it very clear that Jason isn’t all alone despite his support system. Rather, his support system, including his mom, makes him who he is, even more than his malfunctioning legs and hands.
  22. While Fanon wrote with intense anger, he made his case more on an intellectual level than an emotional one, seeking to use his enemies’ words and logic against them. Olsson prefers to swing wildly.
  23. A beautiful, mysterious, beguiling cinematic doodle, and an absolute master class in mise-en-scène, unfolding in odd, fragmented frames and precisely choreographed movement within those frames.
  24. An earnest attempt to convey the essential truth of Wilson’s extraordinary career and difficult life animates both halves of the film, and both performances.
  25. Iris isn’t groundbreaking doc filmmaking, but it’s amiable and jovial in a way rarely seen in the field, which tends more toward drama, trauma, and forwarding big causes. Maysles doesn’t seem to have an agenda, beyond capturing Apfel as she is in this moment, as a complete, highly specific, and thoroughly charming character.
  26. In some moments, White God is a fast-moving thriller... At other times, it’s a standard-issue slasher movie... But when Mundruczó pushes the camera in close on Lili or Hagen, it just becomes a family drama, and a portrait of longing—for freedom, for emotional reciprocity, for comfort.
  27. Il Futuro is a playful, soulful movie, affecting because it’s populated by lost children who can somehow sense they’re in a movie, and that in a movie, the only future is The End.
  28. It’s a valuable historical document, to be sure; as a movie, however, it’s a dry, grueling experience, lacking Shoah’s monumental grandeur.
  29. It’s sloppy and slippery, but for a $5 million movie, it’s remarkable.
  30. The film lacks the narrative tightness, stark beauty, and gripping intensity of Granik’s feature-film work. But it has much of the nuance, and the emotional impact.

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