The Globe and Mail (Toronto)'s Scores

  • Movies
For 3,845 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 46% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 51% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Advanced Style
Lowest review score: 0 The Mod Squad
Score distribution:
3,845 movie reviews
  1. With your sharper minds, you'll probably figure it out. I hope so. Hope you'll like the movie too. But here's a bit of advice: Don't bet your allowance on it. Make Daddy pay.
  2. The movie does offer one historical first: Ferrell, who previously appeared with comedian Sacha Baron Cohen ( Borat) in "Talladega Nights," now appears with skater Sasha Cohen (one point).
  3. This is a film that dearly wants to be important, that wants to do for Holland what Irene Nemirovsky's "Suite Française" does for France - examine the German occupation through a prism of painful honesty. Yet the lofty ambition comes dressed in cheap attire; Verhoeven can't seem to stop himself from shopping downmarket.
  4. The Hoax is a fraud, and not a very good one at that. Stay with me here because we're about to spiral down the rabbit hole: The movie is a fictionalized account of writer Clifford Irving's fictionalized account of his own fictionalized account of wacky billionaire Howard Hughes.
  5. Notable for its enthusiastic abandonment of any semblance of narrative coherence.
  6. Pathfinder is aimed more at the action-figure crowd than the history buffs.
  7. The only surprise here is the real star of the show, who turns out to be not Halle Berry, not even Bruce Willis, but a flat computer screen in all its hard-driven glory.
  8. The shipwreck comes too late to rescue movie from endless banalities. [02 Feb 1996]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  9. Winterbottom's efficient yet prosaic approach is evident from the first grimy frame. [18 Oct 1996]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  10. If you like your archetypes writ large and your sentiment over easy, then Unstrung Heroes is the flick for you. [15 Sep 1995]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  11. A Mexican feature from writer/director Guillermo Del Toro, it's a modern vampire tale that occasionally rises to the level of competence but never inches any higher. [20 May 1994]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  12. Based on an allegedly true story, this is a dark comedy that begins with a charmingly light touch.... Alas, it's when the tale stays murderous, amateur night dragging into amateur day, that the picture loses both its energy and its edge. [09 Apr 1990]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  13. Like an over-ambitious freshman with a term paper, Singleton raises every issue and illuminates none. And, again, this film is better when the combative heat rises, particularly when the long-telegraphed confrontation between Malik and the neo-Nazi finally comes to a (skin)head. [13 Jan 1995, p.C3]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  14. For a screwball comedy, it takes a long time to wind up, and Kline's Frenchman is an outright cartoon. But Ryan manages to hold attention. [6 Oct 1995, p.C2]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 53 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The Coen brothers have made the A-list of writer/directors with their big-budget replicants of Hollywood genres, but the wisecracking Hudsucker Proxy is all comic sound and fury signifying nothing All talk, no substance. [11 Mar 1994, p.C3]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  15. In terms of psychology, it's an abysmal failure, too real to be symbolic, too symbolic to be realistic. [25 May 1990]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  16. The Bostonians, from the novel by Henry James, is the story of their relationship, one of the strangest in literature. Unfortunately, that strangeness has survived the transfer to the screen less than intact, and satiric oddity has been replaced by romantic banality. Redgrave's performance - red-eyed, quivering, opalescent - is peerless, the one incontrovertible reason to see the film. [23 Nov 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  17. The larger budget has given Scanners a high-gloss Hollywood look, the editing is occasionally elegant and the special effects, which consist mostly of imaginative ways of turning actors into meat, provoke from the audience the desired response ("Oh, yuk]"), but he is careful to keep the violence within currently accepted boundaries. [19 Jan 1981]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  18. With its wry tone and mild emotional disturbances, In the Land of Women is less a chick flick than a chick flicker.
  19. Poetic Justice is like that - so much worse than it should have been, and yet, for brief shining moments, so much better than any other 2-star film in sight. [23 July 1993]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 40 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Porky's is crafty, offensive retro-fantasy for one gender. [20 Mar 1982]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  20. The Invisible isn't the formulaic horror film that the studio is selling it as but surely it wasn't supposed to be an accidental comedy either.
  21. Ultimately, Next is just the next Nic Cage vehicle, another quirky story that allows him to do his patented neurotic balancing act in an askew world. The problem here is not just that Cage's shtick is wearing as thin as his hair; the role is a bad fit.
  22. The Mosquito Coast is a work of consummate craftsmanship and it's spectacularly acted, down to the smallest roles (Martha Plimpton as a classically obstreperous preacher's daughter, for example), but its field of vision is as narrow and eventually as claustrophobic as Allie's. [28 Nov 1986]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  23. The Year of Living Dangerously is chic, enigmatic, self-assured - and empty. [18 Feb 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  24. Hurt is so good at capturing the charming and chilling Ned that he almost makes up for the film's two primary weaknesses: Kasdan's inexperience and a message of significant unpleasantness. [28 Aug 1981, p.P17]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  25. Trading in his thinker's cap for a craftsman's apron, Lee is content to carve a little something out of nothing much - the result is as dismissible as it is diverting. [Apr 12, 1996. pg. C.2]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  26. The movie is a competent formula kid flick stuffed to the dimples with movie deja vu, a sop to those Hollywood-bashing politicians who want old-fashioned family values on their celluloid. [17 Nov 1995]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  27. The only thing majestic about Shrek the Third is the title.
  28. An excessively brutal adventure comic book is exactly what it has set out to be - a medieval Heavy Metal. [14 May 1982]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  29. First Blood is a gung-ho action flick fast enough and brutal enough to become Stallone's first non-Rocky hit; on the profound sympathetic levels it seeks to address, however, it is an emission of profound stupidity. [22 Oct 1982]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  30. In most every frame, Hartley takes pains to tilt his camera at odd angles – in other words, he's gone literally off-kilter, and it's just off-putting. What's worse, a further hallmark of the Hartley canon, his self-reflexivity, has begun to smack of self-promotion.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Alas, the perfect Steve Martin vehicle will probably never be the perfect film, no matter how endearing the silver-haired actor makes himself. And so it is with Father of the Bride; good, but by no means great. [20 Dec 1991, p.C3]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  31. Damned if this sugary confection doesn't come with a creepy crust. the odd sense that these aging boomers, ever eager to stall the march of time, are competing with their own daughter in the maternity sweepstakes - I'll see your child, and raise you one. [8 Dec 1995, p.C1]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  32. The movie features Eddie Murphy as a vampire who is both cool and sucks. The same evaluation might apply to the entire film, which is neither as good as it might be nor as bad as you might expect. The long- in-the-tooth Dracula story, which has been updated and set in the black community of contemporary Brooklyn, is a pulpy mishmash of horror and comedy, equal parts the product of its comedian star and its creepshow director, Wes Craven. [1 Nov 1995, p.C2]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  33. Broken Arrow conforms faithfully to the tongue-in-cheek, post-Die Hard action genre, with the usual spectacularly choreographed action sequences and rudiments of a story line. Even considering the meagre demands of the genre, though, character and plot seem woefully underbaked and the reliance on improbable solutions soon makes the groans of incredulity outnumber the gasps. [9 Feb 1996, p.C1]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  34. This is an honestly moving, ungainly film. [25 Mar 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  35. There are individual sequences alternately amusing and touching. [08 May 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  36. The Distinguished Gentleman isn't - distinguished, that is - but it's a notable cut above Eddie Murphy's recent ventures. [04 Dec 1992]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  37. It's better than 2, but not nearly as good as 1. On the slippery slope of sequel-land, that's an okay average. [15 May 1992]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  38. The Two Jakes itself is less tragic than petulant, mired in a self-pitying remembrance of things past. [10 Aug 1990]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  39. Delicatessen is a carniverous sausage - lots of fat, a few meaty bits. [10 Apr 1992]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  40. Falls into the category of heart-warming sports yarns, and, if television still made movies-of-the-week, it would enjoy a rightful home.
  41. But there's still Murray, who drives the idea further than it has any right to go. He energizes the loony schtick of the opening scenes. [17 May 1991]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  42. Although Tom Stoppard's script lifts Ballard's spare dialogue directly from the page, the context in which it is placed is kitsch. [11 Dec 1987]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    On screen, the result feels stagey and cramped, as though the film had been "adjusted for your TV set" before going to video. [13 Dec 1996]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  43. The Loss of Sexual Innocence is not bad, as in the sense of inept; it's artful enough to show how truly trite it is.
  44. With its glum litany of naked corpses and mutilations, and understated actors looking bluish under the morgue's fluorescent lights, Nightwatch drains the fun out of horror. [17 Apr 1998]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  45. In the end, Eagle vs. Shark represents a convincing triumph for Dumb.
  46. Dorothy's friends are as weird as her enemies, which is faithful to the original Oz books but turns out not to be a virtue on film, where the eerie has a tendency to remain eerie no matter how often we're told it's not. [22 Jun 1985, p.E3]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  47. If the plot thins, the performances don't. Brad Pitt's lank-haired loony, Juliette Lewis's crippled innocent, David Duchovny's well-meaning hypocrite, Michelle Forbes' black-clad shutterbug - each is a deeply etched portrait that fulfills its early promise. [24 Sep 1993]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  48. The Black Stallion Returns is not a magic monument - it's only a terrific film for kids. [26 Mar 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  49. Joe Pytka does display an occasional nice touch with mood and atmosphere - at its infrequent best, the humor here is almost wry. But his editing is as jumpy as a mare in heat. [19 Aug 1989]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  50. If you see Clue only once, and it's hard to imagine seeing it more than once, even for the five different minutes, the "A" is by far the best, featuring as it does (this does not give away the identity of the murderer) a splendidly funny shtick from Madeline Kahn. [13 Dec 1985, p.D5]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 77 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Needless to say, what's refreshing about A Christmas Story is subversive to the sepia-toned and loving references to the forties which director Bob Clark has provided for the film. The fictional Parker family that Shepherd has written about for 20 years is not as gentle or gauzy as they first appear. It's possible to imagine them so preoccupied with their own problems, whether dealing with the neighbor's dogs or winning a mail- order contest, that they could forget Christmas altogether. [25 Nov 1983, p.E5]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  51. You Kill Me is not so much a bad film as one filled with missed potential and marked by the seams of compromise.
  52. The characters, full of blue-blood archness and angst, are partial to self-conscious speechifying.
  53. The script's attempt to splice together a fumbling love story with a portrait of toxic personality disorder feels incongruous, like a serving of porridge flambé au whisky.
    • 64 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The end result of this showcase for Buscemi's writing, acting and directing chops is so uneven and mixed in small details and overall tone that it's anybody's guess if it's one for the Oscars or the Razzies next year.
  54. The film's broad attempts at humour are all mouldy bits from Hollywood films.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Somewhere between its loutish humour and laudable sentiments are the traces of a good buddy movie that could, at the very least, have been harmless summer fun.
    • 33 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    A Canadian-made werewolf thriller, Skinwalkers occasionally rises above its station as a standard-issue horror flick to deliver some enjoyably cheeseball thrills.
  55. Feels like one of those misguided high-school-teacher exercises in making literary history sound contemporary.
  56. Actually, occasionally, does feel good. Now if only it had something to say.
  57. An inferior "Napoleon Dynamite." Call it Napoleon Firecracker. The film steals one of the best laughs of Jon Heder's surprise 2004 hit, the scene where Napoleon nosedives over a bicycle jump, and stretches the gag into an 86-minute movie.
  58. It's the same package with new wrapping.
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The relationship between reporter and subject is always a tricky one, but in Resurrecting the Champ it's downright delusional.
  59. Haven't they created a movie that is ultimately a soulless clone of a vibrant original and, thus, a splendidly dull example of the very forces it warns us against – the forces of grey and passion-sapping conformity.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Sadly, Bacon is only intermittently convincing as a man hell-bent on revenge or a father tortured by what he has unleashed on his family.
  60. Hatchet is further evidence of the decline of Western civilization.
  61. A furious 90-minute trailer of a movie that exceeds the speed limit for action films established by Quentin Tarantino's recent "Grindhouse."
  62. If you're looking for a screwball comedy about bipolar disorder -- and who among us is not? -- then this picture fits the bill fine. However, if you're picky enough to want a good screwball comedy about bipolar disorder, well, I'm afraid the wait continues.
  63. Though elegantly staged, Silk is badly written and indifferently cast.
  64. For all these references to the fairytale, Sydney White soon takes an easier path, recycling familiar "Mean Girls" and "Revenge of the Nerds" scenarios.
  65. The movie begins to feel more like a buffet of contrivance than a feast of love.
  66. The Kingdom is a barely coherent compendium of Middle East fantasies, fears and doubts.
  67. Whether you fully embrace the Harry Potter phenomenon or simply live with it, there's no question that J. K. Rowling is an imaginative story-spinner. The trouble is that she has ruined the field for the legions of the second-rate.
  68. The result is that, rather than tragedy, this unfolds like a plodding morality tale in which Wrath and Cowardice play out their respective parts.
  69. The problem is not that the director is working but that his latest film is working too hard. Way too hard – this thing is melodrama running a marathon.
  70. If you have an appetite for well-made treacle, then Bella should go down a treat.
  71. A bit of a docu-mess.
  72. A shrill and silly affair, bordering at times on camp.
  73. A high-pedigree, low-interest affair that serves mostly as an exercise in postmortem speculation: Why is a project with so many prominent names attached to it so sterile and lifeless?
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The movie has a better sense of flow than his past efforts, and a few lengthy travelling Steadicam shots and some decent mountain scenery (supplied by B.C. rather than Colorado) help dispel the feeling that Perry has merely filmed another of his plays.
  74. Maybe Bee Movie is another ground-breaking show about nothing – a hornet's nest of hype for a fat hive of nothing. If so, pay up and get stung.
  75. Theodore Braun's work may well reach and convert one thousand more Adam Sterlings. Here's hoping it does. There is, however, a difference between a worthy cause and a worthy film.
  76. Whatever glimmers of cleverness Martian Child offers, it all comes to Earth with a thud in the shamelessly manipulative climax.
  77. As for Vaughn, he seems exhausted by his strenuous efforts to bring a few sparks of spontaneity to such an overcalculated Christmas product.
  78. Lions for Lambs appears to have taken its inspiration from Al Gore's stolid "An Inconvenient Truth," using the stage lecture and Power Point presentation in lieu of dramatic momentum.
  79. It's all meant, I suppose, to conjure up cold visions of Terminators and Robocops past, or, in this post-9/11 world, of bin Ladens and Bushes present. If so, conjure at will.
  80. I wouldn't say this is laugh-out-loud risible, but there are definitely moments. Still, you might want to consider sitting through the uneven thing just to get to the ending, because that's quite something. You may love it, you may hate it, but forget it you won't.
    • 63 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Occasionally engaging but very chaotic movie.
  81. With a couple of more drafts to mend the plot holes and restructure the middle act, Awake could have been saved.
  82. These characters don't seem illuminating at all – just damned annoying and, ultimately, dead boring.
  83. As for children's entertainment needs, well, having seen both "The Golden Compass" and Alvin and the Chipmunks with a full theatre of four- to 12-year-olds, this reviewer is honour-bound to report that Alvin wins the kids' vote, paws down.
  84. Director Rob Reiner is betting that their star power alone will blind us to the holes in this cheesecloth of a script. It proves a fool's bet – no star shines that brightly.
  85. All of this unfolds with such predictability, the title might as well be The Great Foregone Conclusion.
  86. This sappy thing is a two-hour cheat that never plays fair for a nanosecond.
  87. The pocketing of tired bills headed for the shredder, the producing of tired movies headed for the theatre -- it's all just recycling.
  88. Almost everything about this starring vehicle for Katharine Heigl feels borrowed from some previous romantic comedy.

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