The Globe and Mail (Toronto)'s Scores

For 3,936 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 2.1 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 The Player
Lowest review score: 0 Far and Away
Score distribution:
3,936 movie reviews
  1. A story based on exceptional facts gets converted into an unexceptional movie.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    About 45 minutes worth of funny stuff awkwardly stretched to 84 minutes.
  2. The result is an offence-free, mild entertainment in which everyone from cast to scriptwriter seems to be winging it.
  3. The wee mousie is fun, all right, yet like the occasionally ragged editing, the fun just gets haphazardly wedged in.
  4. Hereafter is unpredictable enough to be consistently watchable.
  5. It tries too hard too early.
  6. In a kind of perverse alchemy, this film manages to turn that narrative gold into dross, and reduce the daunting perils of a 4,300-mile voyage to a ho-hum checklist. Welcome to the reverse magic of the movies.
  7. A paint-by-numbers vigilante movie with the usual rogue cop, murdered wife and trail of vengeance.
  8. While dance sequences are not particularly well edited compared to the new breed of dance flick, Wormald and Hough are exciting hoofers to watch.
  9. A sequel that immediately picks up the plot of its predecessor, and then proceeds to drive the redeemed franchise right off the deep, dark end.
  10. Maybe this stuff works on the page, in Chuck Palahniuk's darkly comic novel, but Choke is awfully tough to digest on the screen.
  11. Seems overstuffed and, in its own way, preachy.
  12. It’s just such a shining example of a dull studio comedy.
  13. Love Ranch bounces between tongue-in-cheek wackiness and soapy melodrama while rarely hitting a true note.
  14. As for De Niro, he seems to have licence to do what he wants here, without much help from the writers.
  15. 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)
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Elevated to some vague level of importance, not on merit but by circumstance.
  16. Plays out like a 1950s B-movie with a fat special-effects budget. Brain-numbing dialogue, incoherent action and glaring improbabilities aside, it's a bearable combination of sci-fi paranoia and historical fantasy that drags modern viewers, and the robotic hero of "The Fast and the Furious" movies, Paul Walker, back to the centre of the Hundred Years War.
  17. Exuberantly campy.
  18. If this sounds intriguing, we should add that System of a Down is a lousy live band. And director Garapedian, for all her public-minded zeal, isn't capable of corralling her interviews and opinions into a coherent polemic.
  19. 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.
  20. Though competent in its B-movie way, Terminator Salvation lacks the humour, heart-tugging moments and visual pleasure that made the first two movies of the series modern pop masterpieces.
  21. Yes Man puts him back in the same old quandary and, once again, Carrey lacks an identity. Alas, this time, he also lacks a script.
  22. As for the locals, they speak like extras from "Fargo," although, on this go-round, that weird Swedish accent has somehow lost its power to amuse.
    • 70 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Stop the Pounding Heart is the last of Minervini’s “Texas trilogy,” so this isn’t his first rodeo. Indulgently, he explores a world that is near-fascinating for its insularity, but one that probably calls for photographs instead of this film.
  23. The script’s occasional gestures toward making this an allegory of the failed American dream are extremely unconvincing in the context of a movie that revels in the excesses of macho culture while laughing at the hapless and stupid who can’t get it right.
  24. Poor Cattrall is caught in a script that, much like the white teddy, is an impossibly tight squeeze, obliging her to hit the farcical laughs while still playing the cellulite realism.
  25. Finally, an Adam Sandler comedy that you can sit through without wanting to throw a mallet through the screen.
  26. Like its characters, That Awkward Moment has commitment issues: It lacks the courage of its bad taste.
  27. An efficiently engineered piece of studio product, enjoyable enough at times, but with an unmistakable assembly-line quality.
  28. The French director’s follow-up to his Oscar-winning silent movie comedy, "The Artist," is everything "The Artist" was not: long, unoriginal and heavy-handed.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    If you’ve already been to Fargo, or at least visited the place via movies or TV, you’ve got scant reason to go to Cut Bank.
  29. Upside Down is no more than one big-budget, gussied-up fairy tale – a topsy-turvy Romeo and Juliet.
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    An uneven but intriguing piece of whimsy that veers from powerfully symbolic cinematography into self parody.
  30. Feels a little like the new "Pirates of the Caribbean" -- a similar wet fizzle of a sequel for sequel's sake -- but what do we know?
  31. The lively verbal sparring between the good and evil sorcerer-apprentice pairs sustains the movie, but, with a predictable plot, by-the-numbers action-movie jolts and no real sense of wonder, The Sorcerer's Apprentice is really just a pumpkin.
  32. 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.
  33. Our mission, should we choose to accept it, is to guess which gal became the wife, which gal should have become the wife and which gal is there just to play with our heads. It's exactly like that old shell game – mildly diverting, pea-sized and otherwise hollow.
  34. Lush, loud and sparkling, and not nearly as innocent as you might imagine.
  35. I can’t pardon Labor Day’s mush, not just because it’s mush, but because it comes with an unappetizing side order of condescension and contempt.
  36. Unassuming only in its title.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    As the middle part of a proposed trilogy, Tai Chi Hero may ultimately look better in light of its own sequel (which, based on the evidence here, will double-down on the steampunk stuff), but now, its pitched battle between silliness and solemnity feels like a split decision.
  37. The script, despite doses of irreverent humour, feels manipulative, and the music is oblivious to nuance, with a spectacular misuse of Johnny Cash singing "Hurt."
  38. With its confined setting and its existential predicament, the picture owes an ostensible debt to the likes of Pinter and Kafka and Pirandello -- you know, Six Characters in Search of an Author, or, failing that, just getting the hell out of this weird place.
  39. Director Peter Hyams strives hard to maintain a light and entertaining touch, lifting Timecop slightly above its formulaic restraints. On the one hand, there's a pleasing freshness to the movie, thanks to lots of energy and a little playful wit. On the other, there's something deeply fatiguing about this picture. Maybe it's the formula, maybe it's all that time travel, but you just can't help thinking you've seen it all before. Must be deja vu. [21 Sep 1994]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  40. Without a thin tether to credibility, this fussy, morbid fantasy simply slides off into the void.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Inspector Gadget may be a live-action movie, but at its heart it's more cartoonish than most cartoons.
  41. Director David Dobkin, best known for comedies such as "Shanghai Nights" and "Wedding Crashers," demonstrates his serious intent mostly by paint-by-numbers psychology and a ponderous pace.
  42. Sinbad lacks, alas, the sparkle and inventiveness of the stories that inspired it.
  43. Actually, occasionally, does feel good. Now if only it had something to say.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    As it glides along from one pretty picture to the next, Visitors starts to feel less like a singular artistic gesture than a compendium of quasi-experimental film clichés.
  44. Lack of sparkling teen chatter prevent this movie from being a slam dunk.
  45. To reduce Leonard to shtick makes about as much sense as using a scalpel for a butter knife — even when the job gets done, it's just such a dull waste of a sharp implement.
  46. J-Lo, Ralph-Lower, Movie-Subterranean.
  47. The Kingdom is a barely coherent compendium of Middle East fantasies, fears and doubts.
  48. Yes, the Empire may be crumbling, and the natives getting restless, but it's all happening with such lyrical loveliness - even the corpses look good. Consequently, when the rains in Before the Rains finally arrive, there's nothing to cleanse, no real dirt to wash away - not with history already so neatly packaged and polished to a dull shine.
  49. If nothing else (and there ain't much else), Everybody's Fine does prove one thing: Even an actor with the gifts of Robert De Niro can't make bland interesting.
  50. Though credibly performed and photographed, it's hard to care about a film that proposes as epic tragedy the plight of a callow rich boy who is forced to choose between his beautiful, self-satisfied 22-year-old girlfriend and an equally beautiful, self-satisfied 18-year-old mistress.
  51. The music, at least, is welcome.
  52. A big bloated bore-o. Think of a combination of "Wild Wild West" and "Spy Kids."
  53. As far as story is concerned, the whole thing feels like a rerun of a raucous Saturday-morning television show aimed at hell-raising five-year-olds.
  54. This mix of titillation and sentimentality can pass as family entertainment because 17 Again is so weightless, a succession of one-liners, sincere monologues and logical absurdities.
  55. There is nothing worse than a thriller that doesn't play fair... The Forgotten is just a big, fat, obvious cheater.
  56. Emmerich succeeds only in making his previous venture, the marginal Stargate, look positively inspired by comparison.
  57. Like "Little Miss Sunshine," the movie stars Toni Collette and Steve Carell in a story about a dysfunctional family trip, though like "Adventureland," it’s really about a teenager finding acceptance at a local theme park.
  58. What big ambitions you have, Grandma. And what a disappointingly modest follow-through.
  59. 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.
  60. Three words: Late Woody Allen. In the autumn of his career, toiling exclusively in Europe, Woody is like an aging cabinet maker still blessed with craft but grown erratic in design.
  61. The last thing I want is this: Yet another instance of black culture diluting itself by imitating a white model. Hell, Honey is hip-hop by way of Andy Hardy.
  62. Of course, given the abundance of voice-over, Nic Cage is unburdened from any great need to act. But he narrates splendidly, delivering the stuff with an unrepentant glee laced with liberal doses of irony.
  63. Magic it ain't, but competent isn't far off the mark. Neither is hum-drum. [28 Oct 1994]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  64. Like a smart-ass student clever enough to see through everyone but himself, Art School Confidential falls victim to the very clichés it wants to puncture.
    • 58 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The initially cynical Naim suggests Tal's project is insignificant, nothing but a bottle of hope bobbing about in a sea of enmity – and so too this film.
  65. Max Payne, game or movie, has precious little to say.
  66. Perhaps the young performers are in such a good mood because they're liberated from having to play straight-as-a-ruler teen melodrama.
  67. The Time Traveler's Wife slips the romance cards into a stacked deck – read 'em if you will, but no need to weep.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Clarkson is fascinating to watch, but the denouement is quick and flat. A storm blows over unexcitedly, as does this film.
  68. It's all picture and no motion, as wooden as its framing. Lovely and lifeless, the result is a traditional portrait of two defiers of tradition.
  69. The art of the classic Hitchcockian thriller is about style, pace and misdirection – and though Unknown is occasionally baffling and involves running and car chases, the film rarely manages to thrill.
  70. For devotees of the genre, the bad news is the best news: Bond is back and nothing has changed except the stuntman's canvas - it's bigger than ever, duly pumped up to Schwarzeneggarian standards.
  71. This is a picture with a perfect sense of proportion: There's a mini-Hanks, a mini-Spacek and a mini-Kasdan in a mini-comedy that's minimally entertaining.
  72. Pimenthal's script consists of the scantiest storyline, framed around a succession of strained Farrelly Brothers-style gags that feel as though they were peeled off the floor of the editing room for "There's Something About Mary."
  73. Between a string of post-Friends dismal rom-coms, Aniston has succeeded in these kinds of grownup roles every few years. Here, she negotiates the character’s quirks and contradictions competently, but nothing short of a rewrite from scratch could make Cake palatable.
  74. Like a skill player who just can't score, The Damned United is all dazzle and no finish and, ultimately, damned frustrating.
  75. Aside from Jones’s broadly entertaining performance as the egotistical Supreme Commander, the movie, directed by Peter Webber (The Girl with the Pearl Earring), is a dud.
  76. Say this for I Am Number Four: It's blessedly free of any original sins. Instead, they're all copied. Here a little "Superman," there a bit of "Spider-Man," now it's "Twilight" with aliens, then it's a spaghetti western with trucks – this thing borrows more heavily than an investment bank in an unregulated market.
  77. The Paperboy is southern Gothic wallowing in the swamp of low camp. And if the wallowing were deliberate, this might have been hugely funny.
  78. Without either the effect of a full concert spectacle, or up close and personal backstage intimacy, This Is It is neither one thing nor the other.
  79. The problem lies with Williamson's script, which feels as if it has been torn from different places and glued back together like a ransom note.
    • 19 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Like its predecessor, Grown Ups 2 is proudly retrograde, both in its relentless deluge of toilet humour and the way it bear-hugs some good old-fashioned conservative values.
  80. This is a dumb action flick that pretends to have a brain, a spot of affectation that plunges the audience into double jeopardy -- forcing us to traipse through not just the standard litter of bloody corpses but (oh, damn) the added trash of bloodless ideas.
  81. The difficulty with the film starts with the amount of improbability one must swallow. [24 Dec. 1998, p.D10]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  82. Pandora’s Promise is less an exploration of the subject than a well-constructed sales pitch.
  83. From the script to the title character to the direction, the watchwords here are three: Play it safe. The whole thing reeks of the formulaic.
  84. The obvious problem with The Whole Ten Yards is that it begins with the wrong kidnapping. Instead of taking Oz's wife, the criminals should have grabbed the authors of the original movie.
  85. Brüno is likely to be the funniest thing you'll see on a screen this summer. Which is precisely its problem: it's a thing , not a movie – if, that is, you believe a movie should be more than an accumulation of prankish set-pieces flimsily strung over 80 skimpy minutes.
  86. The word "arachnid," as it's said so contemptuously in the movie, begins to sound suspiciously like "Iraqi," and indeed, we soon see the elite bugs are hunkered down in their desert fortress, resisting the mighty air assaults of the Federation. The conclusion of our story involves unearthing the chief bug.
  87. It's not so much a movie as a joint promotion for the National Basketball Association and teenaged rap and adolescent poster-boy Lil' Bow Wow.
    • 22 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    By the time the movie actually arrives at its finest moment – a nearly two-minute single shot from the Mustang’s hood as it chases the villain’s van through dense traffic – you’ve become so numb to speed and sensation that you may barely notice.
  88. Keen to be both really romantic and romantically real, the movie is neither, and falls between the cracks of its twin-ambitions. The result? Call it l'amour phooey.

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