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 Flags of Our Fathers
Lowest review score: 0 Hulk
Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 44 out of 458
458 movie reviews
  1. Dismal and heavy, and the failure rests chiefly with Johnny Depp, who plays Barrie.
  2. Soderbergh, the writer and director, has slowed his metronome almost to a crawl, has repeated and delayed and protracted, in an attempt at depth. The net effect is a small paradox: incomprehensibility caused by drag, not by rush.
  3. Where Russell wobbles in this screenplay, which he wrote with Jeff Baena, is not in his intent but that he omitted to make it funny.
  4. Nelson's writing, as arranged by Simpson, adds absolutely nothing to our experience of September 11.
  5. Is Scorsese desperate? This screenplay has the scent of it, as if he is scraping for material to feed his basic filmic interests. But the risk in this case--not evaded--was that his need led him close to painful strain. I can't remember another Scorsese moment as shockingly banal as the finishing touch here.
  6. Little in [Connery's] character is explored or colored. It's not a highly complex role, but the man has qualities that could make him interesting; after all, it's his aberrant action that initiates the whole naval plot. Connery merely fulfills his contractual obligations to the producer-no depth in him at all. [26 Mar 1990, p.26]
    • The New Republic
  7. The picture as a whole lacks the energy and incisiveness --the sheer anger-- that have marked Costa-Gavras's best films. A pity, because it is a true Costa-Gavras subject.
  8. The dialogue creaks, all the more so since we know better than it does what it is going to say.
  9. As Freundlich surely knew, he must have counted, as do we, on the revelation of character to enrich the piece. It doesn't happen. None of the people is particularly interesting, not even the obligatory neurotic, well enough played by Julianne Moore. [6 October 1997, p. 28]
    • The New Republic
  10. The grave story is leaden, the comic story isn't funny, and the comparison--the rivalry--between the two modes is never crystallized.
  11. The entire film feels like the result of a market study. Tests were held (it seems) to determine which problems would have the most audience-grab, particularly when combined with two other problems. [06 Mar 1995 Pg.30]
    • The New Republic
  12. Bertolucci's original story--a generous adjective--was made into a screenplay by the American novelist Susan Minot, who has an unwavering eye for the predictable and an ear for the tired phrase. [24 Jun 1996 Pg.32]
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  13. The film, so far as it is betrayable, is betrayed by the casting of Jean. She is played by Jennifer Lopez, a sexy star who is out of key with the picture and is presumably on hand to supply the oomph that Redford no longer provides.
  14. What is outstandingly incredible are the high-flown pronouncements, including literary judgments, given suddenly to Costner. They make him sound like a dummy for Shelton the ventriloquist. [1 Aug 1988]
    • The New Republic
  15. Even at the low end of the Spielberg spectrum, there has always been some air of ingenuity, some sense of the maker's excitement. Not here. The Terminal plods in spirit and execution.
  16. Even with its latter-day (modified) frankness, Far From Heaven is only thin glamour that lacks a tacit wry base. Thus diminished, it can be tagged with a term that Susan Sontag once defined so well that she put it out of circulation: camp.
  17. We become so distracted by the jigsaw effect that soon we are more concerned with the assemblage itself than with what it is about.
  18. Rogozhkin's hard, hands-on directing technique and the physicality of all three actors are--or could be--impressive, but they are swamped here in a sea of ideological mush.
  19. The director, Sydney Pollack, who appears briefly in the film, has done his experienced best with this Scotch-taped script. But his two stars are insuperable handicaps.
  20. Witherspoon is flavorless, so she emphasizes the screenplay's skimpiness instead of at least partially redressing it.
  21. The best performance, the only one that can really be called acting, is Diane Ladd's as the mother. Ladd gives us a woman full of self-pity and shrewdness, full of sexual experience and guile, who has now reached the age when, if she wants to, she can turn off sexual heat in favor of cold power drive. [24 Sept 1990, p.32]
    • The New Republic
  22. The progress of the film is so mechanical that we can only wait for the finish, knowing far ahead of time what it will be.
  23. Haneke leaves the future of the human race ambiguous. Or would have left it so if his allegory had worked. But the film is such a pat construction, so dingily shot in heavy light, so dependent on our cooperation without earning it, that we are more aware of the exercise than affected by it
  24. The ghost is played by Patrick Swayze, who can't handle the part; his bereaved girlfriend, Demi Moore, is much better. [13 Aug 1990, p.30]
    • The New Republic
  25. The whole is just a wan rejection of traditional story, as well as a weak slap at those who still bother to attack the story tradition.
  26. This film by Nick Doob and Chris Hegedus forces us to make some decisions about him. For myself, I find him generally gross, in person and in manner.
  27. For all the film's frantic editing, it never really takes off, principally because of Gibson. He never seems concentrated, really present. He was better as Hamlet. [1996Dec9 Pg.27]
    • The New Republic
  28. Over and over in the course of the film, we can see Spacey, a good actor, reaching down into himself to find a source of verity for this plot-constructed character. It is not a pretty sight.
  29. His (LaBute's) work needs attention even at its nadir, which I hope this new film is.
  30. Gerry is all manner without any trace of depth.

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