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
Lowest review score: 0 The Cobbler
Score distribution:
1474 movie reviews
  1. While virtually every shot looks like a work of art, much of the beauty of Ain’t Them Bodies Saints comes from Lowery’s refusal to choose sides.
  2. The Trials Of Muhammad Ali’s real value is in showing—not just talking about—the time and place in which Ali lived.
  3. A documentary that’s both impressionistic and informative—admiring the magic of dance even in its formative stages, while also turning the making of art into a kind of procedural.
  4. Beyond theme, however, these stories are united by the agonizing, low-level tension Östlund brings to bear on every scene, which vary in importance, but not in consequences for the characters involved.
  5. Interstellar often seems afraid to let any development go unpacked and uncommented upon, except for a handful of points that dive into the action and expect viewers to catch up. The film is at its best in these moments, when it’s unafraid of challenging storytelling, particularly since Interstellar never has trouble finding visuals to match its heady concepts.
  6. There’s a fair amount of Hollywood magic in the way director James Frawley and Henson’s Muppeteers stick Kermit and friends into scenarios in which he’s riding a bike, rowing a boat, and walking in cowboy boots. But the less showy effects always defined the Muppets.
  7. As the rare overlap between music doc and advocacy piece, Musicwood is hopeful about a relatively unsung issue without necessarily being naïve.
  8. The new ending Oelhoffen has dreamed up is unsatisfying—Camus’ version was sharper, nastier, more credible—and the film never strays far from genre convention, but it’s refreshing to see a sincere paean to nobility, honor, and courage, especially one that periodically elevates the pulse with expertly mounted standoffs.
  9. Anyone with an interest in the intersection between film history and world history, or in the psychological powers of narrative cinema, should see Forbidden Films.
  10. What makes Prisoners more potent than its oft-implausible mystery should allow is the way Villeneuve lingers over the textures of a terrible event.
  11. Mommy puts all its personal baggage on the table like Ally Sheedy emptying her purse in The Breakfast Club, and Dolan is to be admired for sharing so much of himself, and doing it with such evident passion. But it isn’t enough for an artist simply to share—he has to shape, too.
  12. It ultimately amounts to a feature-length origin story, but with characters this unknown and execution this fun, that’s an asset, not a liability.
  13. While Creep has the limited scope of DIY filmmaking at its most rudimentary, that contributes to a tone that’s unusually playful and entertaining without coming off as a lark.
  14. Joe
    Joe’s brilliance doesn’t lie in its destination, but in the gripping, intense, surprisingly joyous and funny journey it takes to get there.
  15. Narco Cultura makes it abundantly, forcefully clear that the illicit business of narcocorridos thrives on the illicit business of cartels—and business is still booming.
  16. While La Sapienza is unsatisfying as drama, it’s frequently beautiful just as a tour through architecturally significant Italian buildings. And it’s intellectually engaging as an elaboration of their larger meaning.
  17. Too blunt and didactic to convey the futility of war with the complexity the subject demands, Tangerines works primarily as a showcase for its trio of lead actors, who work hard to make their characters’ gradual yet quick thaw seem not just credible, but inevitable.
  18. With Mysterious Skin, Araki burrowed into the hearts and minds of his audience, looking to provide his viewers with Neil and Brian’s deeper understanding of how to piece together a fractured life, then go looking for the fragments that are still buried deep.
  19. What makes Like Father, Like Son so quietly powerful is that for the most part, it doesn’t traffic in stereotypes.
  20. Even though the film’s overall impact is blunted by Wheatley’s frequently inscrutable plotting (co-written with Amy Jump), Rose’s images...speak louder than words.
  21. To her credit, Hamilton lays out their story cleanly and with no small amount of tension, all while drawing strong connections to Watergate, the Pentagon Papers, and the Edward Snowden case.
  22. A Most Wanted Man is a cold film that examines its characters from a clinical distance, but its iciness gives way to raw emotion in a powerful final sequence.
  23. The constant in The Imitation Game is Benedict Cumberbatch’s terrific performance as Turing, which has much in common with his delightfully mercurial Sherlock Holmes, but with an underpinning of repressed emotion and quiet despair.
  24. In Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case, a fascinating, essential marker in the ongoing saga of his exploits, the government fights Weiwei with artificial law to maintain an illusion of total control, fueling its target’s heroic persona in the process.
  25. Melodrama is defined by exaggerated characters and events, as well as overt appeals to emotion, and Beyond The Lights fits that mold ably and comfortably. But beneath the shiny surface of music-video imagery and true-loveisms lie some provocative ideas and deep truths about how people relate on a private level vs. a public one.
  26. Screenwriter Hanif Kureishi (My Beautiful Laundrette, Sammy And Rosie Get Laid) sometimes overdoes the emotional-seesaw routine... But director Roger Michell (who’s previously worked with Kureishi on The Mother, Venus, and the miniseries The Buddha Of Suburbia) maintains a slightly jagged rhythm that proves disarming, and he has two magnificent collaborators in Broadbent and Duncan.
  27. Something, Anything is the rare film that gently asks the big questions, then gives us space, and room.
  28. The irony of Prince Avalanche is that its most conventional elements, the ones that wouldn’t be out of place in a Hollywood buddy comedy, are by far its most satisfying. It’s only when Green reaches for the old poetry that the film seems excessively precious and out of balance.
  29. Wong’s usual concerns overwhelm the film, and though his pairing of fisticuffs and longing is sometimes awkward, he surrounds the awkwardness with some of the most beautiful images in his career. In Wong’s world, beauty goes a long way.
  30. Little Feet barely even qualifies as slight. It’s more of a limbering exercise for its director than a full-fledged project, and it’s overly reliant on his offspring’s minor charms.

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