The Globe and Mail (Toronto)'s Scores

  • Movies
For 3,883 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 1.7 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Eyes Wide Shut
Lowest review score: 0 Thunderbirds
Score distribution:
3,883 movie reviews
  1. It's difficult to say who is more misguided here: the men (director, screenwriter and producer) who made the movie, or the women who signed on to play the parts.
  2. There are two movies in Superman III, one a witless and obvious and often cruel comic strip, the other a blithe and subtle and often amusing exercise in middle-brow camp. Not only do the two halves never come together, they are in active opposition. [17 June 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 24 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Here's a movie that tries to be a video game but is less entertaining than a vending machine.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    The monster isn't very interesting (or scary) to look at: he's just an oily, overgrown gremlin.
  3. A plot so preposterous it could only have emerged from the underground comic world.
  4. The manipulative Star Wars-style score is the only novelty on tap in Silverado, which has a plot too drearily complicated and arid to summarize and an attitude almost unbearable in its dryly smirky assurance that it knows what you want from a Western, which is to say, action that never quits, emotion that's never felt, characters that are never real and situations that are never sensible. [10 Jul 1985, p.S7]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  5. Why bother suffering through 90 minutes of bad company for a few moments of holiday cheer? Especially when you can still stay home alone and watch "A Charlie Brown Christmas" somewhere on TV.
  6. Stallone's sequel has almost nothing to do with the original film except that it's about dancing; otherwise, it's Rocky IV with legwarmers. [16 Jul 1983]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  7. They are singing the jingle in the bath, in bed, in the car, ready to send you, like George, smack into a tree.
  8. As for the old and graceful Jackie, he's completely missing in action, his supple talents sacrificed on the high altar of movie technology -- that frenetic place where superheroes are a colossal bore and real ones are sadly impotent.
  9. 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.
  10. Dragonfly has more plot than a figure-skating competition, and just about as much credibility.
  11. To report that Always will make you cry is not esthetically saying much; slicing up onions has the same effect. Leslie Halliwell's one-word summation of the forties version applies to Spielberg's update for the nineties: "icky." [26 Dec. 1989]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  12. W.E. is a heavily made-up face masquerading as a movie and demanding to be admired – demands that might just leave you with an acute pain in the other end.
  13. The cast is equally strong (especially McDonnell), but the vast subject and the shifting settings force Kasdan all over the map. [10 Jan 1992]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  14. The countdown begins with the first negative integer — an amped-up score that overpowers the proceedings like a bad band at a high-school dance.
  15. Another Nicholas Sparks novel, another cinematic brush with insulin shock.
  16. Too much chatting, not enough chills.
  17. As for Keitel, he pops up in a brief cameo as a housing contractor, with a dump-truck full of sand, the one that De Niro is standing right behind. The pair engage in a heated argument, as they once did so memorably those many years ago, and then the truck dumps that load exactly where you know it must. An esteemed actor gets buried but, what-the-fock, the franchise laughs on.
  18. The devil is back in Exorcist: The Beginning, and he is more disgusting than ever. Not more scary, just really yucky, in a kind of maggots-on-a-pizza-slice way.
  19. 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.
  20. Admittedly, it's been a long time since Kelly McGillis was being hyped as "the next Grace Kelly." But of all the films in all the world for whom the former Top Gun lust object could have done a walk-on, this lacklustre haunted-house feature is the one she chooses?
  21. None of this is funny enough to justify stealing 90 minutes of your viewing time.
  22. An underdog's breakfast of a movie, with some quite funny characters and set pieces mixed with some excruciating "moral lessons," but at least it moves along at a brisk pace.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Cranked up at double speed, the plot of Flashdance could almost be a satirical fantasy about dance students. Although Flashdance doesn't admit it's a fantasy, neither does it succeed in looking realistic. [16 Apr 1983, p.E5]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  23. Bad Teacher should be a hoot. But it isn't. Love the theory here, hate the practice.
  24. A few early laughs scattered around a plot as thin as it is repetitious. There's talent in this picture, both before and behind the camera, but virtually none of it gets on the screen.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    If the art of a true hustler is, as Joe puts it, "beating a man out of his money and making him like it," Callahan blows it big-time with any mark who shells out to see his film.
    • 47 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Like kudzu vine, killer bees and herpes, we may never be rid of it.
  25. Made of Honor should come with a bar code and a Wal-Mart display - this isn't a movie, it's a commodity. The generic brand is the romantic comedy, and the manufacturer's material of choice is recycled plastic, smoothly glued together to assure the consumer that the purchase is risk-free and thoroughly predictable.
  26. The weak plot means that the picture is governed totally by its gadgetry, the equivalent of those James Bond sequels that limp awkwardly from one showoff sequence to the next. [10 May 1991]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  27. Characters already too wicked to be credible start doing stuff simply too stupid to be believed, with no help from a cast way too overmatched to be useful.
    • 27 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Most of The Fog will seem drearily perfunctory even to those viewers who don't know Carpenter's version, which itself emulated the elegant gloom of Val Lewton's horror pics of the 1940s.
  28. While the pale skin tones (bronzer is selectively applied) and haphazard mix of American and British accents is distracting, it barely scratches the surface of Exodus’s ungainly artificiality.
  29. It transforms that bottom line into a saccharine border, framing the picture with enough faux inspiration to keep Hallmark in cards for a month of Mother's Days. [03 Jun 1994]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  30. With the performers given zilch to perform, the result is a picture that's all chassis and no engine, or, in the parlance of the genre, a bunch of pointy hats in search of a transporting broomstick.
  31. It's possible to insult even a teenager's intelligence.
  32. The problem is that director Wayne Wang seems deaf to the tonal differences between coming-of-age, magic realism and children's comedy.
  33. Empire is just too intent on living up to its imperial name -- colonizing other defenceless movies, plundering their rich natural resources, and leaving us all to feel rather cruelly violated. A postscript: Somebody here -- I'm not saying who -- dies. And still keeps on talking.
  34. In lieu of a movie, we get a series of car chases rudely interrupted by the occasional smattering of dialogue.
  35. Smith and Lawrence enjoyed some amusing chemistry in the '95 original, but their molecules sure aren't jibing here. It's a full hour into this behemoth before there's anything resembling a belly laugh.
  36. 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.
  37. If it weren't for Mo'Nique's fresh, appealing screen presence, Phat Girlz would fall flat.
  38. A crashing bore.
  39. Highlander's flashy style is the cinematic equivalent of a Las Vegas chorus line: always kicking. Without Lambert, who displays an unexpected comic talent along with intensely photogenic passive-aggressive eyes, and Roxanne Hart, whose knowledgeable portrayal of a New York detective is undercut by the symphony of screams extracted from her toward the end, and Connery, who wears a pearl-drop earring and is supposed to be Spanish but still has the burr and brio of James Bond, Highlander would be little more than an everlasting video; it's not much more than that, as it is. [10 Mar 1986, p.C9]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  40. Dull Blade just doesn't cut it.
  41. Both syrupy and scatological, this is a typical family-dividing Sandler comedy: Parents will hate it but the kids will delight in its rudeness.
  42. Candy and Moranis are real talents, but they're completely wasted, like everyone else here, sacrificed to the grade-school inanities of that self-indulgent script. [26 Jun 1987, p.D6]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 31 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    If TMNT the franchise is going to reach the same lofty heights of blockbuster-dom, it still needs to find its own inner hero.
  43. While computer games can boast an abundance of nifty graphics and odious villains and plucky protagonists on long journeys, they're invariably a tad wanting in the cinematic essentials -- you know, stuff like plot and characterization and theme.
  44. Some films, like some people, wear their artsy pretensions on their sleeve, and there really isn't much going on beneath – it's just a posturing armband wrapped around a plain arm. Welcome, then, to the emptiness of Mister Lonely, a movie that goes to extraordinary lengths to say ordinary things.
  45. Norbit is pretty much a bad-taste sinkhole.
  46. A lamentably slack and dishonest genre exercise.
  47. It wants to make an important political statement, which might have been dandy if it had anything remotely cogent to say.
  48. About the only fun to be had in the movie is screenwriter Alan McElroy's cartoon spook-speak.
  49. Virtue aside, however, Red Tails is a lousy film. Not wincingly bad, mind you, just mediocre.
  50. A lightweight flick about a heavy-duty subject, A Dark Truth plays like a TV movie back in the days when TV wasn't worth watching.
  51. All of this is interesting, but not all that entertaining.
  52. Very little of it works.
  53. Valuable life lessons always come at a steep price, and this one is no exception. Sorry, but you'll have to shell out for The Divide and then suffer through its nearly two hours of bloody inanities. Weigh the balance, make your choice.
  54. [Law] talks straight to the camera like the young Michael Caine, but this time our hunk has got zilch to say. That's because a bastard's candour is off-limits in today's politically correct market — it just wouldn't be polite.
  55. Pretty much what you'd expect -- just another haunted house that happens to float.
    • 61 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    One of Blomkamp’s most unlikely conceits is a machine – apparently standard-issue in all of Elysium’s made-to-order McMansions – that can heal all injuries and infections at the flick of a switch. He could have used one to fix Elysium’s battered and broken screenplay.
  56. By then, the lofty ambitions can't disguise the sad reality - it's long, it's cluttered, and it's trite.
  57. What we have here is a romp, a funny romp at times, with a clear satiric intent and the expected quota of outrageous style - likable enough, yes, but a rather flimsy thing, a zany fest with its mind on cruise control. [17 June 1994]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 54 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Anyone who has seen "Dream Girls," "What's Love Got To Do With It?" or even "The Doors" will find themselves in familiar (if inferior) territory here.
  58. Before immediately handing the movie an F and sending it off to summer school, give the filmmakers, and especially co-star Jason Schwartzman, credit for their anarchic willingness to try anything to shock a laugh loose from an audience.
  59. Both cautionary and comforting (yes, some kids today prefer conversation to cybersexting), Men, Women & Children is as anxious to seem contemporary as any after-school special.
  60. After a while, it begins to feel like a confused comedy: How to explain to the neighbours that your dead husband has moved back home?
  61. Over on the aliens side, it's hard to make out faces, but there's no doubt about their place of origin: These slimy, growling, bug-eyed and distinctly non-scary things are straight from central casting.
  62. The problems with First Sunday extend well beyond the hokey premise and predictable performances to the fundamentals of script, direction and tone.
  63. Clint has a script. Actually, Clint has too much script, one of those schematic by-the-number jobs that telegraphs its every pitch.
  64. Every time you think you grasp the concept, another layer of outlandish supernatural gobbledygook is laid on top, leaving the viewer feeling as spun-out as Linda Blair's head.
    • 35 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    While the movie and the accompanying series are being pitched to a younger audience than most new Star Wars ventures, parents may be perturbed by the film's relentless violence.
  65. The net result is a few shaky laughs and one unwavering sensation -- that The Terminal is interminable.
  66. Winkler is a singularly boring director, forever telegraphing his scenes by tracking the camera behind a rustling bush or pulling the lens up close on his villain's eyes or gun. As a result, the film feels enervated and predictable when it should be energetic and surprising. It's a testimony to the abilities of the perky Bullock that she's entirely believable, but even she can't paper over the movie's many holes of logic. [28 July 1995]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  67. American Me is a graphic and honest effort that, unfortunately, becomes a catalogue of other films on similar subjects. Its depiction of prison life is much too slow, too long, too repetitive and too familiar. [13 Mar 1992, p. C3]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  68. When The Big Chill is busy being funny, it's a great comedy, but when it goes for depth, it hits bottom an inch down. [30 Sep 1983, p.E1]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  69. What Happens in Vegas should damn well have stayed in Vegas.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    In the worst scenes in Deuce Bigalow: European Bigalow, it's as if Schneider and Co. are straining to invent new taboos just so they can break them, a strategy that provokes more confused silence than laughter.
    • 32 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Everything about Michael Bay’s fourth Transformers movie is too much. Its 165 minute running time. Its convoluted plot. Its deafening score. Its product placement. Its never-ending action scenes. Its swooping camera work. Its overwhelming stupidity. Well before it finished I was numb from its bludgeoning excess.
  70. School for Scoundrels suffers from an old-fashioned identity crisis. The poor thing is awfully confused, and so are we. Is it a black comedy that isn't dark enough? Or a dumb comedy that isn't stupid enough, or a gross-out comedy that isn't yucky enough? Or is it really just a romance comedy that isn't sweet enough? Don't have a clue, but this much is certain: It's definitely a failed comedy that isn't funny enough.
    • 54 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    It never reaches the soaring, cloud-busting heights of Frankie Valli’s otherworldly falsetto, and it doesn’t even try.
  71. I'll personally toast the buns of anybody I hear saying anything good about the movie Broadcast News. Broadcast News is for boobs. It doesn't apply to us. Anyone who thinks otherwise is invited not to think, because thinking is for statues. [16 Dec 1987, p.C5]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
    • 51 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    Interminable techno-dud.
  72. Do we at least perk up during the ol' gunfight at the O.K. Corral, or the vacant lot at Fremont Street, or wherever the hell it did take place? Sorry. Kasdan never was an action director, and he clearly hasn't gone to school for this flick. Bang, bang, I'm dead, you're not, next scene - I've seen livelier shoot-outs at a soccer match. [24 Jun 1994, p.D1]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  73. Dance gets political in Step Up Revolution, the fourth installation of the popular movie franchise, which delivers plenty of spectacular fancy footwork in what is otherwise a flat-footed fantasy.
  74. Watching Attack of the Clones is like getting rapped on the head with a rubber mallet -- no lasting damage (I pray and hope), but bad enough to bring on an acute bout of dizziness and disorientation. Definitely do not operate heavy machinery after viewing -- this behemoth is brutal.
  75. In what is surely a tribute to the dazzling mediocrity of director Luis Llosa, the real jungle looks as bland as the fake jungle.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    The finale just seems hypocritical, even nonsensical in a comedy that derives its few laughs from a farting dog and an accidental gynecological exam. This book is better left closed.
    • 57 Metascore
    • 38 Critic Score
    The heroic irony that was hilarious in Raiders is merely ridiculous here, and the half-tribute/half-parody of the adventure genre is toyed with to threadbare extremes. [23 May 1984]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  76. An ugly, strictly-for-meatheads comedy that can only be recommended to couples who wear matching Tie Domi Toronto Maple Leafs jerseys out on a date.
  77. Oh, it's perfect all right. In fact, The Perfect Score is a flawless example of the classic January movie release -- the kind of studio picture that even the studio loathes, and so consigns to the dumping ground of the year's frosty first month.
  78. In the end, this musical is not a disgrace - Huston has too much experience to let the thing die. But he cannot summon the magic required to let it live. Watching Annie is like being buried alive in balloons. [21 May 1982]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  79. Reign of Fire never comes close to recovering from its demented premise, but it does sustain an enjoyable level of ridiculousness.
  80. The Game Plan, created as a vehicle for Johnson, is a family comedy heavy on syrup and low on laughs.
  81. With barely a laugh to be found, Confetti takes the "mock" right out of the mockumentary, and you can guess what's left. Yep, a Umentary, a brand new genre best defined by what it's not -- not real like a doc, not funny like a mock, not this thing or that thing or much of anything.
  82. The result is as off-putting as biting into a confection in which the sugar has been replaced by salt.
  83. If you thought "300" was silly, think of 10,000 BC as 33.333 times sillier.
  84. The film sputters and stalls and winds up behaving like the worst sort of oldster – passing gas and pretending to be deep.

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