The New Republic's Scores

  • Movies
  • TV
For 458 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 39% higher than the average critic
  • 3% same as the average critic
  • 58% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 2.5 points higher than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 64
Highest review score: 100 Before Sunset
Lowest review score: 0 Hulk
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 44 out of 458
458 movie reviews
  1. Schreiber's directing is ambitious, but it is nowhere near the originality and truth in his acting. Throughout the film we can feel him striving to control, to invent, to glisten.
  2. None of the actors completely satisfies.
  3. The war is not scanted: the devastation and butchery are there. But the screenplay by Frank Cottell Boyce, based on a non-fiction account by Michael Nicholson, is thin, sentimental. [29Dec1997 Pg. 28]
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  4. I cannot remember a moment in this new film that compares, simply in directorial originality, to the work in "Schindler's List."
  5. I hazard the guess that quite small children--pre-science fiction, pre-heroics--will enjoy its fairy-tale quality.
  6. Holofcener, who studied film at Columbia and has directed shorts, gets some sprightliness into her writing but not much difference in characterization between the two women. [12 Aug 1996, Pg.26]
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  7. Well-photographed and adequately directed and acted, Iron Island is (painless) propaganda, informing us about domestic peace and goodwill. And this film, too, leaves us with a question: why does the currently aggressive Iran want the world, especially our chunk of it, to see what it is "really" like?
  8. The film's trouble is in what happens in each section: not enough. Once the atmosphere of each period is established, the story is too weak to interest--and the characterizations are too thin to compensate.
  9. What keeps us watching? Chiefly it is Edward Norton's performance as Harlan. It is hard to doubt his belief in everything he says, no matter how silly or dangerous it sounds.
  10. Throughout we keep waiting for the real Almodóvar film, and it never arrives.
  11. We are left finally with a double response: it is hard to know exactly why the film was made, what its emotional and thematic point is, yet we are glad it happened because of Harris's performance.
  12. The picture is so suavely made that we don't feel disappointed until it is over: what chiefly holds us is the quality of the acting.
  13. It is kept listenable--and watchable--because Bourdieu uses his knowledge of these people with winning ease. The story's conclusion verges on the grim, and it underscores Bourdieu's presumable theme: student life and talk are the last real vacations in many lives.
  14. The real pleasure is in having a film that is like a box of assorted chocolates: you have the power to approve or not as you move through the variety, even though the bits are picked for you.
  15. Haggis has made a safe picture. It is familiar enough that it slips easily into our film-watching faculty without any fuss, yet his handling of it--his muscular belief in what he is doing--makes us hope that his next screenplay will be a bit less safe.
    • 51 Metascore
    • 60 Critic Score
    A potentially stifling ambience is deflected by quiet suspense and the awe-inspiring compositions of the cinematographer, Clay Liford. Decaying rustic interiors evoke Andrew Wyeth still lifes; pastoral long shots suggest a Southwestern walkabout. And Mr. Lowery seems ready for a bigger canvas.
  16. None of the film is exciting, and, despite the preeningly smooth flow of the story, little of it is interesting.
  17. Lynn Redgrave is nearly incomprehensible as the housekeeper with some sort of housekeeperly accent. [Dec. 14, 1998]
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  18. Midnight Run is two films. One is a succession of bright, razor-edge, nutty dialogues between two men. The other is the plot that keeps them together, which is stale and full of boring violent-comic action. [29 Aug 1988]
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  19. To read a Carver collection is to walk through a gallery of beautifully formed objects. To blend his stories into "soup," no matter how smartly, to see them "as just one story," is to vandalize good art, to rationalize filmic opportunism as aesthetic principle. [25 Oct 1993]
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  20. The net effect of the incessant dazzle is depressing.
  21. The Good Thief merely adds a new tinct to the pathos of Jordan's career. Once again we see a director who is better than anything he has so far done.
  22. We can almost hear the way he (Keitel) will speak a line before he speaks it. The triteness of the role and its performance, instead of dramatizing the contrast between this philistine and the artist, makes the confrontation between the two men a smug setup.
  23. What helps Pfeiffer most is the fact that though she is exceptionally pretty, she patently doesn't rely on her prettiness: she wants to act. But, with her Ellen, though we know what she means from moment to moment, we simply don't feel it... Winona Ryder is disastrously miscast. [18 Oct 1993, p.30]
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  24. Formally, Boyz is just one more old-time bad-neighborhood picture. Instead of, say, Manhattan's Lower East Side in Prohibition days, it's an LA lower-middle-class black neighborhood afflicted with drugs. And Singleton's control of his picture's flow is much less firm than was the other directors'. [2 Sept 1991]
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  25. Nicholson, one of the best actors in American screen history, is miscast again… He is quite visibly uncomfortable in his role. It needed an actor who could easily be viciously stuffy, like William Hurt. Nicholson struggles for the core of the man but never gets it. [Feb. 2, 1998]
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  26. But it is precisely with these contrapuntal strands of huge, timeless nature, of the complexity of every human mind, that Malick bloats his film into banality. [Jan. 25, 1999]
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  27. Jordan would like us to believe that the three films are stages in a metamorphosis, but the stitching shows… Part Two, explored and expanded, might have made a good film, especially since Davidson gives a quiet, knowledgeable, perfectly poised performance. [14 Dec 1992]
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  28. The disaster is John Malkovich in the key role of Valmont... From the moment he steps out of a carriage at the start, he walks and gestures like Malkovich. He has done nothing to bring himself to the part, not even bothering to learn how to pronounce "mademoiselle." ("Madam-uhzell," says M.) [2 Jan 1989, p.24]
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  29. The English Patient is excitingly promising. Then the screenplay goes rotten, like an overripe melon. [Dec. 9, 1996]
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