The Globe and Mail (Toronto)'s Scores

For 4,417 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 Moolaadé
Lowest review score: 0 Never Again
Score distribution:
4417 movie reviews
  1. Notable for its enthusiastic abandonment of any semblance of narrative coherence.
  2. The pretty good stuff comes early, when Nic and Ron, weary of wasting women and children, suffer an attack of conscience and desert the Crusades.
  3. Eccentric and misguided enough to be almost perversely fascinating, the film doesn’t lack nerve; it’s just not very good.
  4. Understandably, a script so obsessed with the dark doings of plot has little time left over for the study of character, and, thus, we never really get to know these people.
  5. Entertaining, if highly predictable, escapist ensemble comedy.
  6. Any one of these narrative components might have made for a worthy picture. But that would have taken a more imaginative writer than Charles Leavitt and a more sensitive director than Gary Fleder.
  7. Before it turns into a thriller, and goes badly awry, Red Lights paints a devastating little portrait of a marriage on the rocks.
  8. Country Strong has a pleasant soundtrack of conservative country music, many of the tunes newly written for the movie, some of them performed by old pros and some of them performed by the cast.
  9. Laugh? Well, once.
  10. For some (okay, me), The Holiday, like the holidays, will require some girding up, and is best met halfway with a self-immunizing smile. Otherwise, the good cheer may ring false; worse, it might even seem to sell love cheap, and lovers short.
  11. Director Irwin Winkler (Night and the City)is rarely better than pedestrian in handling this story. At worst, the dramatic elements are plain clumsy.
  12. Still, even Romero's staunchest fans might conclude their hero is going through the motions here. Yes, almost like a zombie.
  13. Hey, it’s all good clean fun.
  14. To be very generous toward the filmmakers' intentions, Beowulf & Grendel might be seen as a misguided attempt to lend some modern nuance to a traditional tale of good and emphatic evil. But why pussyfoot? The movie is a lumbering and ludicrous mess.
  15. The only thing majestic about Shrek the Third is the title.
  16. At least The Infidel is an equal-opportunity blasphemer, and God bless it for that. Otherwise, this thing plays like a cheeky Brit-com blown up to feature length, with a thin coat rack of plot to hang the ethnic humour on, and a wish to offend without being offensive.
  17. The movie is sentimental and reliant on bodily-function humour, but it also has a generous spirit, a multicultural rainbow of characters, and a social message about approaching fatherhood responsibly.
  18. Breezy, sleazy and a little bit wheezy, The Big Bounce combines a short running time, a portrait of island-life corruption, and a retro surf-and-scam plot. Throw in a vintage, funky-soul soundtrack and you have the ingredients of ever so many bad television shows.
  19. Orphan descends into a formulaic bloodbath that barely registers a pulse.
  20. This breach with the audience does matter, for it is one thing to seduce your viewers and quite another to trick them. Love is all about trust, after all.
  21. The problem is director Joe Carnahan, who’s way too manic even when the formula calls for calm – he can’t stay still long enough to drive home the punch-lines.
  22. Though the script takes pains to paint George as a passive boy-man, there's just not enough lovable here and too much of the thoughtless lout. Butler beware: In acting as in soccer, if you keep taking dives, sooner or later you pay the penalty.
    • 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.
    • 48 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Like the fakery it satirizes, DiCillo's Real Blonde ends up ringing hollow.
  23. Beverly Hills Cop II puts its mega-star through a medieval trial, an ordeal by dullness. Survive these surroundings, Eddie Murphy, and you must truly be one very funny guy. Well, Eddie survives, barely, and taking our cue straight from him, so do we, almost. [22 May 1987]
    • The Globe and Mail (Toronto)
  24. One of those crime flicks besotted with its own plot.
  25. An Eddie Murphy comedy that's actually endearing.
  26. Laudable for its commentary on hedge-fund greed and a government unable to take care of its people, the well-acted film loses points for story conveniences that rob the final scenes of the emotional weight otherwise earned. A promise made is a balance owing, and The Debt fails to pay off.
  27. While a lot of geography is covered, as a concert film, Conan O'Brien Can't Stop is decidedly thin entertainment.
  28. Hugh Grant's Martin Tweed is nowhere as menacing (or interesting) as the callous bruiser who makes every episode of American Idol a chilling psychotic adventure.
  29. It is, alas, très twee. A muchness of silliness. Beautifully filmed silliness, and fetchingly acted tweeness. But give me Cruella de Vil any time.
  30. Solid performances from veterans Sissy Spacek and Kris Kristofferson as Jay's parents, and Treat Williams as the sheriff, anchor the older generation, but the characters do tend to conform to stereotypes of hard, unforgiving men and loving, patient women.
  31. Single-handedly, Bridges gives the film what it otherwise lacks -- energy and emotion invested in this damaged man, naked beneath his ballooning caftan, at once sadly ridiculous and ridiculously sad.
    • 68 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    What starts off as a possible Argentine "American Beauty" reeks like a room stacked with pungent flowers.
  32. Bouncing about from one flawed movie to another, Steven Spielberg has lost his way of late, and Munich finds him more disoriented than ever.
    • 43 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    On a thematic level, it remains wholly reprehensible and a fraudulent piece of entertainment. But at least it rips off some better films (Mad Max, Day of the Dead, The Matrix) with a good deal of energy.
  33. Though beautiful to look at and graced with moments of ticklish camp, The Skin I Live In is also sluggish, arbitrarily conceived and, especially in its sagging middle, unaccountably dull.
  34. A comedy about a middle-aged dad who has an affair with his neighbour's daughter, The Oranges does not taste freshly squeezed.
  35. 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.
  36. A contrived little comedy, Dummy definitely lives down to its name -- you can see the lips moving on this wooden thing.
    • 49 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The decision to overhaul the Scary Movie franchise by sending up such non-horror titles as "8 Mile" and "The Matrix Reloaded" also pays dividends.
  37. It's a sitcom-y ensemble film (complete with product placement) that feels like you're flipping around the TV dial.
  38. And therein lies the difficulty of adapting Indignation for the screen; remove Roth’s prose from the equation and you don’t have much left. Writer and director James Schamus turns Indignation into a minor period piece, a precise but seemingly pointless evocation of the stultifying conventionalism of an American university campus in the 1950s.
  39. Embracing such depths, Bukowski somehow made his art. Simulating them, Factotum just makes us queasy.
  40. A bland, workaday detective flick that should have been much better than it is.
  41. With its exotic setting and its beautiful cast, this Dangerous Liaisons is lovely rather than wicked.
  42. Come to think of it, Ferrell is to the sports comedy what the Toronto Maple Leafs are to the hockey biz: Hard-core fans are sure to show up and find reasons to be amused. The rest of us can only hope for better days.
  43. Call it "Alexander the Grate," because, over the marathon of its three-hour running time, this wonky epic really does get on your nerves.
  44. While Jason Bourne isn’t half-bad as an action movie, it is a nakedly hollow exercise in resuscitating brand loyalty.
  45. It’s less startling than it was when the first Sin City was released in 2005, maybe even quaint, like a black-light Jimi Hendrix poster from the ’60s.
  46. Throughout, Terence Blanchard's score swells and sweeps, reminding us, at every moment, what we're supposed to feel. If only we knew what we were supposed to think of this trite mess.
  47. On the flimsy wings of this familiar fairy tale, Linklater tries to fly himself a movie, dressing up the quartet (and the strapping he-men cast to portray them) in the audience-friendly vestments of picaresque charm.
  48. The 131-minute, car-racing film is adolescent guy date histrionics – screaming tires, snappy putdowns and, because we're in Rio, an occasional influx of bodies beautiful in Band-Aid bikinis.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Battleship has its moments, like the rare occasions when it nods to its origin: There's a nice eureka when we learn that evil alien ships can be outwitted, improbably, by plotting co-ordinates on a grid, à la your granddad's board game.
  49. Although its two lead actors are strong – and Meyers affords them a generous number of scenes where they can bare raw emotion – the film stumbles toward the end, and the central duo don’t develop all that much.
  50. For all the carnality on offer here, Mitchell and his cast seem ambivalent about sex.
  51. One of those comedies that is more peculiar than actually funny.
  52. More interestingly, it's also kind of sweet in a contrived and fumbling first-kiss sort of way.
  53. About a third of the way along, there's a shocking revelation that definitely packs a punch. Problem is, it's followed by a near-immediate return to familiar narrative convention, where the noir ante rises exponentially toward a climax that arrives too hastily and ends too neatly.
  54. Definitely erratic, this thing -- all in all, it's the sort of commercial vehicle you might want to stay well back of.
  55. It doesn't take a foolish romantic to hope that Myles and Elisabeth live happily ever after. The world just isn't ready for 20 More Dates.
  56. As a message movie, it's preachy without being serious; for an action movie, there's a lot of racket but not much fun.
  57. There are many plot lines here, but little tension.
  58. This is wish-fulfilment fantasy, where the laughs lie in sorting out an embarrassment of riches.
  59. Though there are a few annoying moments when the actors get in the way of the scenery, mostly it succeeds.
  60. It's all rather wacky and hard to follow or fathom, although maybe that's attributable to Virginia's schizophrenia veering off on its delusional phase.
  61. The cast is so oddly interesting you wish you could see them doing something less wasteful
    • 46 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    If I Stay is true to principle in one significant regard: It makes no concessions to anyone outside its teenage female cohort.
  62. One disappointment here is that Patricia Clarkson, the queen of indie film, is missing much of her usual spark. Her performance may be aiming for sensual, but too often it comes across more as listless.
  63. 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.
  64. 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.
  65. So why does Savages feel so calculated, cutesy, free of suspense and trashy only in the uninteresting sense? No doubt, Stone is trying... but it all feels more like flexing atrophied muscles rather than creating a believable experience.
    • 23 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    The slapdash dialogue and smug vocal talent -- even the presence of the much-loved host of "The Daily Show" is wearying -- detract from the visual appeal of the most energetic sequences (like a raucous train chase) and what's left of Danot's designs.
  66. The less you know about Shakespeare, the more you're likely to enjoy Anonymous.
  67. In Youth in Revolt , Cera bellies up to the same table once too often. His fresh-faced act is starting to look really stale.
  68. A superior entertainment to both "RE 1" and "Alien vs. Predator."
  69. Redford hasn't moved too far here from an earlier political-thriller template: With its skulduggery, late-night meetings and the contemptuous political cabal out to thwart justice, The Conspirator can be thought of as "All the President's Men – The Lincoln Edition."
  70. Whatever seeds of social justice and emotional nuance No Escape may be attempting to sow are undercut by the film’s melodramatic valorization of family values.
  71. Here’s a date movie that will neither cozily cheer you nor satisfyingly thrill you, but instead leave you scratching your head.
  72. It’s the direction, not the script, that really kills the picture, as Mazer limps along from the chugging contest to the half-naked conga line to the car chase without ever raising the laughs he needs from the comic set pieces or the tension he needs from the dramatic developments.
  73. An unlikely Irish-Cuban co-production, Viva is, like its central subject, beautiful to look at but ultimately lacking depth.
  74. Too much diary, not enough movie.
  75. The Viral Factor is deliriously far-fetched. And one wishes director Dante Lam (The Beast Stalker) could have at least had some giddy fun smashing all his toys around. But his new film is tediously overwrought and drably made, with scenes punctuated by synthesized drums out of eighties American TV drama.
  76. Each of the actors has strong moments but the relentless intensity becomes monotonous.
  77. In a few sound bites, we get the picture and the picture's motto: the smug and selfish coast is an order of disaster-flick toast waiting to burn.
    • 41 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    Jim Caviezel, as coach Ladouceur, doesn’t get much to work with, the script reducing the man to a two-dimensional motivational speaker awash in “there’s no I in Team” platitudes.
  78. Both Smith and his son are appealing presences, but The Pursuit of Happyness seems to take place in a sociological vacuum. Gardner's insight into his difficulties begins and ends with the thought that, in the pursuit of happiness, there's a lot more pursuit involved than happiness, and unasked political questions seem to dangle ominously over the entire movie.
  79. You Kill Me is not so much a bad film as one filled with missed potential and marked by the seams of compromise.
  80. None of it rings true, except perhaps the presence of an ambitious local TV news reporter (Kyra Sedgwick) who begins recording every macabre moment with relish.
  81. Pardon my pulling anthropological rank, but Instinct -- a movie about an ape-man savant -- seems a quart low on common sense.
  82. The film is not significant, but it is principled and sweetly subversive. And, like high school, if you’re not careful, you might just learn something from it.
    • 36 Metascore
    • 50 Critic Score
    It works best when it doesn't take itself seriously, and some of the ways in which ESP is faked are briefly engaging, like short con games or magic tricks revealed. But, finally, the film doesn't offer the sense of release, or of surprise, that it seems to take for granted.
  83. It is hard to know whether to applaud directors David Redmon and Ashley Sabin for exposing the underside of the fashion business – or demand they abandon their documentarian stance and rescue young Nadya on the spot.
  84. The first 45 minutes of this film feel like far too much normal and not nearly enough para.
  85. What we have here is a pretty good TV show huffed and puffed into a rather mediocre film.
    • 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.
  86. Perhaps for Zwigoff, directing someone else's script, this was just a job of work. If not, the talent who made "Crumb" and "Ghost World "has now made his first movie mistake.
  87. The movie is a freakish creature, with lush, painterly animation inspired by Dutch and Flemish masters, attached to a convoluted, gloomy narrative punctuated with scenes of sadism that rival "The Dark Knight."
  88. Less an adaptation of its source material than a therapeutic response to it.
  89. Mother’s Day is a concocted market-driven holiday, and so is this M&M’s-obsessed movie – candy for the sweet-toothed among us.

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