The Globe and Mail (Toronto)'s Scores

  • Movies
For 3,758 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: 59
Highest review score: 100 The Saddest Music in the World
Lowest review score: 0 Alone in the Dark
Score distribution:
3,758 movie reviews
    • 55 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    For his feature film debut, Brandon Cronenberg has taken the decidedly uneasy route in more ways than one. First of all, Antiviral is a virtual panoply of high wooziness, replete with sweating, shakes, vomiting, rot-infected food and more needles piercing skin than rush hour at a free flu clinic.
  1. It’s just such a shining example of a dull studio comedy.
  2. 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.
  3. Upside Down is no more than one big-budget, gussied-up fairy tale – a topsy-turvy Romeo and Juliet.
    • 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.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Revenge of the Nerds has some very funny moments and sturdy premise, but the revenge, when it comes, is not nearly as definitive as even the non-nerds in the audience would hope for. [25 July 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  4. 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.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It’s a shame that two gifted comedians weren’t given better material to work with.
  5. What remains “indie” about At Any Price is that this is an unabashed social-message film – one that plays out like a cross between the agribusiness exposé "Food, Inc." and Arthur Miller’s "Death of a Salesman."
    • 66 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    There might be a pretty good film lurking in this latest dramedy from the veteran Scottish directing-writing team of Ken Loach and Paul Laverty. I use the conditional because at least half the dialogue is delivered in a Glaswegian Scots so thick, it might as well have been Urdu.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It’s a timely narrative subject, but its treatment in The Reluctant Fundamentalist is fundamentally flawed.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Michael Shannon is an overpowering actor, and in The Iceman, the best that he can do is wrestle the movie around him to a stalemate.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    There’s a worrisome failure of imagination at work in the title of this movie. It’s actually hard to imagine a more generic title. But at least it’s succinct. It rolls off the tongue much better than Movie That Feels Not So Much Inspired As Engineered According to Conventional Animated Kids’ Genre Requirements.
  6. There’s a fine line sometimes, as "This is Spinal Tap" reminded us, between stupid and clever. Now You See Me wobbles along that tightrope for much of its running time.
    • 42 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    A potentially incisive character study is buried under layers of fluff in The English Teacher.
  7. The difficulty with the film starts with the amount of improbability one must swallow. [24 Dec. 1998, p.D10]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  8. For all its merits - a lush canvas, a first-rate cast, a thoughtful director examining a theme directly relevant to his own checkered career - Vincent & Theo doesn't quite measure up. [16 Nov 1990]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  9. So, fans, gear up for rock-em-sock-em action, yet don’t be disappointed if much of the goonery seems a bit tepid and, dare I say, staged.
  10. Though by no means a good movie, The Internship floats along for fairly well for about half its length, thanks to the easy interplay between the two stars and a certain melancholic topicality.
  11. Unfortunately, The East is not a very good movie, hobbled by an excess of plot, a lack of believability and big gaps of logic.
  12. Emmerich succeeds only in making his previous venture, the marginal Stargate, look positively inspired by comparison.
  13. Magic it ain't, but competent isn't far off the mark. Neither is hum-drum. [28 Oct 1994]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  14. If this were funny, The Heat would add up to your average buddy-cop comedy. Except that it’s not funny, at least not very and not often.
  15. Formula action films don’t come much more formulaic that this.
  16. Eccentric and misguided enough to be almost perversely fascinating, the film doesn’t lack nerve; it’s just not very good.
  17. Exuberantly campy.
  18. 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.
    • 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.
  19. Pandora’s Promise is less an exploration of the subject than a well-constructed sales pitch.
  20. The film is primarily an excuse for Chase to demonstrate that though he may be a movie star he has yet to learn how to create, let alone sustain, a character, and for director Harold (Caddyshack) Ramis and screenwriter John (National Lampoon's Class Reunion) Hughes to demonstrate that some movie stars get the colleagues they deserve. [2 Aug 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  21. There’s a scene in a members-only club where Wyatt and Goddard meet, giving the two veteran actors the chance to go eyeball to eyeball for a couple of minutes of barbed dialogue. It almost makes the movie worth it.
  22. If Jobs had been a producer on Jobs, he would have sent it back to the lab for a redesign.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Sadly, the movie’s lack of a clear identity – is it a thriller, soap, legal drama or action chase movie? – makes it difficult to understand why anyone should care.
    • 23 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.
  23. Winnie begins as hagiography and ends in hellish confusion.
  24. Continuing directly from where 2010’s "Insidious" left off, Insidious: Chapter 2 follows the further misfortunes of the Lambert family with diminishing insidious rewards.
  25. An ambitious, if uneven, experimental sci-fi romance that is less a thought-provoker than a dazzling juggling act.
  26. The 3-D is a pain, and the excitable editing, slo-mo and speeded-up action frustrate attempts to watch the athleticism on display, but the last half-hour takes it up a notch.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Unfortunately, the film promises more fun and laughs than it delivers, and this meal tastes like too many that have gone before it.
  27. Otherwise, Brody, Scott and Jenifer Lewis (as Montana’s imperious oft-married mom) give this formulaic material maximum comic spin.
  28. Occasionally, the cast rises above the material.
  29. Thanks for Sharing might best be described as being like Steve McQueen’s sex-addiction drama, "Shame," if it were rewritten by Neil Simon at his most schmaltzy.
  30. The film, shot in black-and-white at canted angles, suggests an R-rated Twilight Zone episode with a twist of Fellini-lite, in a trite film school kind of way. Mickey Mouse is unlikely to be shaking in his big yellow shoes.
  31. The movie is a preholiday trifle that’s mildly risqué and a lot sentimental.
    • 52 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Ambitious but generic martial-arts movie.
  32. There are the usual gaggle of embarrassing friends, a lot of voice-over and montages, a wedding, a funeral and wait … something’s missing. Oh, right. Hugh Grant.
  33. Directed by Brian Percival, best known for his work on "Downton Abbey," the film has the similar quality of a well-appointed historical soap opera.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Traditionally, Christmas movies are about the power of the holiday spirit to conquer all in the name of seasonal detente, and The Best Man Holiday, although sprinkled with bad behaviour and salty bon mots, is traditional right to the twinkly-tipped top of the tree.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The director’s avoidance of anything resembling innovative framing or editing will probably pay off when Delivery Man eventually airs on television, where the flimsiness of its jokes and “serious” moments alike should feel less conspicuous.
  34. The new Jason Statham movie Homefront aims to be retro, greasy comfort food but despite its lowly ambitions, there’s barely enough spice here to merit a decent burp.
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Although ably directed by feature first-timer Ruairi Robinson, and gamely performed by a cast professional enough to feign alarm and surprise, The Last Days on Mars ultimately confirms what science has already spent billions of dollars establishing: There’s just no life here.
  35. Certainly, this imagineered version of P.L. Travers’s life provides an orderly drama, but it’s uncomfortably reductive. It may be a small world, after all, but it comes in a lot more shades than Saving Mr. Banks suggests.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Not much room for controversy here, and certainly none for counterargument, this is prime-time TV history rendered as a soothing, Papa Bear bedtime story.
  36. Unfortunately, this reverent and old-fashioned biopic is a prime example of the kind of inspirational movie that is, itself, uninspired.
  37. This entry has been described as a “cousin” to the other movies. Specifically, The Marked Ones is a Hispanic cousin, customized for Latino audiences in the United States where the series is particularly popular.
  38. Although a couple of performances here may earn Oscar nominations, by the time you’ve sat through the wreckage, you’re left with the sense that this really must have worked better onstage.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The Nut Job has a certain lo-fi charm, but it’s hardly a world-beater; with all due respect to Surly, Rocky J. Squirrel’s place in the pantheon would seem to be safe for another 50 years.
  39. Like its characters, That Awkward Moment has commitment issues: It lacks the courage of its bad taste.
  40. 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.
    • 63 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.
  41. By the film’s end, one can’t help thinking that the story would be better served by a well-researched documentary on the real-life MFAA division (monuments, fine arts and archives.)
  42. 3 Days to Kill is a comic variation on the "Taken" movies, which Besson also co-wrote and produced, starring Liam Neeson as a daughter-rescuing spy.
  43. No doubt the audiences in the Coliseum would offer a thumbs-up to the scale of the destruction, though even they might have had some quibbles about the special effects, which, too often, resemble a very large pile of melting crayons.
    • 37 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    So yes, if you’ve seen "The Bible," you’ve already seen most of Son of God – but if there’s one story where spoilers just don’t apply, it’s the Greatest One Ever Told.
  44. Overall, Stalingrad is a bizarre concoction, part Putin-era patriotic chest-thumping and part creaky war melodrama, all set in a superbly recreated ruined city.
  45. As is often the case in these caper flicks, there’s too much plot for insufficient dramatic effect, and alert viewers will suss out where it’s all heading in the first five minutes.
  46. Every stage of the race and chase is announced on a webcast conducted by the secret impresario of the illegal De Leon race, a billionaire car enthusiast known as the Monarch, who “nobody knows.” Actually, the Monarch is clearly visible in a corner of the computer screen and he’s played, with jive-spouting brio by Michael Keaton. Hey, the movie isn’t called Need for Logic.
  47. At almost 21/2 hours, Divergent is repetitiously brutal and drab, with sets that resemble warehouses and industrial junkyards; the action rarely emerges into the daylight before the climactic gun battle.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The gradual ramping up of both the camera calisthenics and the gore quotient suggests a movie that’s been very deliberately paced, but that doesn’t mean that Afflicted really gets anywhere, except back to the very basics its state-of-the-art presentation is supposed to transcend.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    There’s plenty of shimmying here, maybe too much, and lots of spin moves, but it’s missing on-the-field results.
  48. The movie is no religious fringe event. It’s from a major studio (Sony), with an Oscar-nominated star (Greg Kinnear), adapted for the screen by "Braveheart" screenwriter Randall Wallace.
    • 76 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Watching De Clercq dance is not only what Nancy Buirski’s uneven documentary does to best effect, it helps you understand the movie’s otherwise restrictive emphasis on the men who became obsessed by her, primarily her discoverer and husband George Balanchine and the dancer/choreographer Jerome Robbins.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Godzilla – both the movie and the big guy – is otherwise something of a lumpy, lumbering great beast of a thing, lurching from city to city, continent to continent, smackdown to smackdown and plot point to plot point with singularly graceless indifference to anything other than those take-home jaw-dropper shots.
    • 56 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Unfortunately, For No Good Reason sidelines Steadman’s own bona fides, functioning primarily as a second-hand documentary of Thompson, stoking the hagiography of the late hipster icon.
    • 31 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The movie offers nothing new or special, but at least it isn’t as painful as watching Sandler walk Al Pacino through a Dunkin’ Donuts rap.
    • 44 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The Love Punch feels like a remake of an old MGM caper comedy. It’s not, but it feels that way, which will certainly set it apart from the Disney villains, X-people and radioactive sea monsters of the summer movie schedule.
    • 69 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Fault is at heart a full-throttle, by-the-numbers tearjerker.
    • 50 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Just as the promising parody of prison films begins to catch fire, Friedman and Poitier douse it with a bucketful of realism. [13 Dec 1980]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  49. 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)
    • 75 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    In truth, despite its honesty, this is a flawed little film, its low comedy never funny enough to justify its crudeness.
    • 60 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Poehler’s Parks and Rec co-star Adam Scott is there, playing a sound engineer and so is John Stamos from "Full House," because, you know, that’s funny. Until it’s tiresome.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    As a script it is uneven and tonally inconsistent – best as a brainless, gross-out comedy, less successful when striving for emotional poignancy.
  50. Although the film and the actors keep on looking good, this solemn, soppy, fantasy has nothing to say about science or faith.
    • 39 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It’s a story where sex and being over 60 aren’t treated as mutual exclusives, which is pretty great in its own way.
  51. A Master Builder really doesn’t work, hampered by odd casting, theatrical performances and a reductive interpretation of Ibsen’s play.
    • 59 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    There could be a fascinating and illuminating movie in this.
  52. 21 years later, in the wake of "The Hunger Games", "Divergent" and "The Lego Movie," another movie about a kid rebelling against socially imposed “sameness” is a case of the same old, same old.
  53. This briefly inspired bit of surreality quickly descends into gratuitous bondage, mayhem and dumb humour, marking the usual progression from mildly absurd premise to gratingly idiotic conclusion.
  54. The problem with the taboo-busters is that they feel calculated - in the past, Lynch's creepiness seemed casual and natural - and they take Wild at Heart so high it can't come down; the picture repeatedly jacks itself into frenzy only to crash into lethargy.
  55. Other than a few gratuitous montage sequences, plus a patently clumsy echo of the shopping scene in "Pretty Woman," Marshall refuses to pull his share of the load, forcing his beleaguered cast to fend for themselves.
  56. Though Lillard's excitable tone keeps promising wild comic adventures, the sequences are uniformly flat and humour-free.
  57. It's the sort of visual joke you would wince at in a 1940s movie; to see it nowadays, you're tempted to dismiss it as unintentional.
  58. Barely a chuckle in sight.
  59. Properly handled, any one of these characters could be made, just barely, believable. But here they simply go off, like rockets, exploding out of nowhere and racing across the screen, one after the other.
  60. There is no pleasure in watching a child suffer. Just embarrassment and a vague sense of shame. Watching Trapped simply makes us feel guilty.
  61. It's not really serious, not especially funny, and not noticeably scary. Strikeout.
  62. On the whole, the film is content to lumber awkwardly between the condemned man on death row and the intrepid reporter on his save-a-life beat -- there's about as much rhythm in the style as there is sense in the plot.
  63. A cinematic homage as flawed as its subject. Flawed, yet with a peculiar fascination of its own -- what we have is a genuine artist paying sincere tribute to an unapologetic mediocrity, and stooping awkwardly to the task.
  64. The result is a small independent film suffering from a severe case of Hollywood-itis. A cautionary tale minus the caution, Just a Kiss is just a cop-out.
  65. The film doesn't work, it ain't charming.

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