The New York Times' Scores

For 12,607 reviews, this publication has graded:
  • 48% higher than the average critic
  • 4% same as the average critic
  • 48% lower than the average critic
On average, this publication grades 3.4 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 A Man Vanishes (1967)
Lowest review score: 0 Dirty Love
Score distribution:
12607 movie reviews
  1. Slicing through the fat of policy debates to the visceral rush of critical care, the narrative combines existential worries... and blood-and-guts immediacy with a seamlessness that made me want to high-five the editor, Joshua Altman.
  2. Propelled by a captivating, wrenching performance by Karine Vanasse as Hanna, a 13-year-old girl adrift in a sea of powerful emotions in Montreal in 1963.
  3. The political implications of the film are manifest, as is the quiet courage of making it.
  4. The best concert films achieve a marriage of sound and image that feels effortlessly harmonious, and in that regard Inni, a musical portrait of the Icelandic band Sigur Ros, leaves most of its genre in the dust.
  5. [A] fascinating documentary.
  6. The film is useful in part because it is so frankly argumentative. The critical appreciation of art is always advanced more effectively by partisanship than by neutrality.
  7. In his memoir Mr. Bauby performed a heroic feat of alchemy, turning horror into wisdom, and Mr. Schnabel, following his example and paying tribute to his accomplishment, has turned pity into joy.
  8. A profound and provocative exploration of cultural inheritance, communications technology and the roots and morality of terrorism, the Canadian filmmaker Atom Egoyan nimbly wades into an ideological minefield without detonating an explosion.
  9. This poisonous, brazenly autobiographical comedy shows off the best of Mr. Allen's misanthropic humor.
  10. A richly detailed tale of passion, perfidy and revenge adapted from a typically tricky Ruth Rendell novel.
  11. Mr. Kore-eda, whose most noteworthy family dramas include “Still Walking” (2009) and “Like Father, Like Son” (2014), works in a quiet cinematic register, and the slightest error in tone could upend the whole enterprise. Slow-paced, sad, rueful and sometimes warmly funny, After the Storm is one of his sturdiest, and most sensitive, constructions.
  12. Quiet, graceful, stately and infused with slow tension, Dana Rotberg’s White Lies unfolds with inexorable weight.
  13. Above all How I Ended This Summer is a merciless contemplation of the fragile human psyche under siege.
  14. Mr. Hong's casually brilliant feat of storytelling, akin to an ingeniously wrought suite of literary short fiction.
  15. The movie is a curiosity cabinet of visual pleasures but so breezy and lightly funny that you may not realize at first how good it is.
  16. Together, however, they add up to a film that may be the closest movies have come to the cinematic equivalent of a collection of Chekhov short stories.
  17. With warmth, wit and none of the usual overlay of nostalgia, King of the Hill presents the scary yet liberating precariousness of life on the edge.
  18. Delicate and autobiographical (Wang Han was the director’s name when he was a child, and the story is constructed from his boyhood memories), 11 Flowers clings steadfastly to its youthful point of view.
  19. Everybody Wants Some!! is more than just nostalgic. It’s downright utopian, a hormonal pastoral endowed with the innocent charm of a children’s book. There are plenty of movies about lust-addled youth, but it’s unusual to find one that feels truly wholesome.
  20. Educates without lecturing and engages without effort.
  21. A visual adventure worthy of that much degraded adjective, awesome.
  22. Maybe, beneath the stylistic flourishes and bursts of operatic emotion, it is a simple story of psychological struggle, about a man in midlife reckoning with the damage of his past. But to settle on that interpretation is to deny or discount the splendid strangeness of Mr. Sorrentino's vision - and also, therefore, of the curious corners of reality he discovers along the way.
  23. Though it dedicates itself to avoiding directorial egotism, in accordance with strict rules of the Danish filmmakers' collective known as Dogma 95, Thomas Vinterberg's Celebration is still a virtuoso feat.
  24. Peculiar and sneakily brilliant.
  25. For one thing, the buildup is so grippingly patient that we’re more than halfway through before the titular battleground is reached. And for another, this painstakingly paced thriller displays an intensity of purpose that makes it impossible to dismiss as well-executed trash.
  26. Despite the urgency of the situation the musicians face, when they’re not doing their work, the movie is quiet, observant, taking in the austere beauty of the land and the people.
  27. One of the rare documentaries you leave wishing it was a little bit longer.
  28. The Kindergarten Teacher — the film as well as the character — yearns for different values, for intensity, beauty and meaning. Its sobering lesson is that the search for those things is most likely to end in madness, confusion and violence.
  29. Gathers you up on its white horse and gallops off into the sunset. Along the way, it serves a continuing banquet of high-end comfort food perfectly cooked and seasoned to Anglophilic tastes.
  30. The Coens have used the noir idiom to fashion a haunting, beautifully made movie that refers to nothing outside itself and that disperses like a vapor as soon as it's over.
  31. Audacious as it is, the movie is also a little scary.
  32. A pleasurably sly and involving puzzler - a mystery about mysteries within mysteries.
  33. Into the Woods, the splendid Disney screen adaptation of the Stephen Sondheim-James Lapine musical, infuses new vitality into the tired marketing concept of entertainment for “children of all ages.” That usually translates to mean only children and their doting parents. But with Into the Woods, you grow up with the characters, young and old, in a lifelong process of self-discovery.
  34. Gaudily vibrant, at times morbidly funny.
  35. As Lucy Honeychurch, Miss Bonham Carter gives a remarkably complex performance of a young woman who is simultaneously reasonable and romantic, generous and selfish, and timid right up to the point where she takes a heedless plunge into the unknown.
  36. A stirring documentary directed with narrative depth and unguarded heart.
  37. Filmmaker Kevin Rafferty makes the case for remembrance and for the art of the story in his preposterously entertaining documentary Harvard Beats Yale 29-29, preposterous at least for those of us who routinely shun that pagan sacrament.
  38. [Mr. Garland] plays with visual contrasts — Mr. Isaac’s compact, muscled body and Mr. Gleeson’s long, drooping one, picture windows that look out onto an expansively lush landscape and windowless rooms that register as upmarket prison cells — that dovetail with the narrative’s multiple, amusingly deployed dualities: confinement and liberation, agency and submission, mind and body.
  39. Remarkable patchwork of unremarkable lives.
  40. This movie is graceful, subtle and sure-footed, much as its English title implies.
  41. It’s the film’s sounds that really wrench. If you’ve ever wondered what a breaking heart sounds like, it’s right here in the futile warble of the last male of a species of songbird, singing for a mate that will never come.
  42. The masterstroke of this small, heartfelt directorial debut (by Peter Care, from a screenplay by Jeff Stockwell) is its integration of animated sequences (by Todd McFarlane) in which action-adventure caricatures of the comic book characters parallel or comment on events in the boys' lives.
  43. Thorough, understated and altogether enthralling documentary.
  44. It's potent stuff, delving into pornography, incest, murder and mutilation in the company of alienated men and unhappy, sometimes cruel women.
  45. City of Gold transcends its modest methods, largely because it connects Mr. Gold’s appealing personality with a passionate argument about the civic culture of Los Angeles and the place of food within it.
  46. What emerges is a poignant commentary on the uneasy commingling of love and fame.
  47. Art is a fairy tale we choose to believe in, and this movie, a fiction confected about real people, is too good not to be true.
  48. Unfolding with a reticence that’s occasionally confusing, Les Cowboys presents a suggestive, almost abstract take on terror and the generational toxicity of bigotry.
  49. Ms. Zellweger accomplishes the small miracle of making Bridget both entirely endearing and utterly real.
  50. It is a truism that academic arguments are so passionate because the stakes are so small. Footnote, a wonderful new film from the American-born Israeli director Joseph Cedar, at once affirms this conventional wisdom and calls it into question.
  51. The look is rough, the emotions always hovering near the surface. Yet, buoyed by Mr. Sharif’s cheery personality, these can sometimes be defiantly upbeat.
  52. “Dawn” is more than a bunch of occasionally thrilling action sequences, emotional gut punches and throwaway jokes arranged in predictable sequence. It is technically impressive and viscerally exciting, for sure, but it also gives you a lot to think, and even to care, about.
  53. Funny, smart, thought-provoking — and musical, too.
  54. One of the great movies of the 1960's, but it has been, in this country at least, maddeningly elusive. In spite of its bitter edge, Billy Liar is pure Ambrosia.
  55. Rarely has a film with so much blood on its hands seemed so insistently alive.
    • 62 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    [A] riveting documentary.
  56. Fascinating. Anyone interested in the challenges and techniques of acting -- which is really to say, anyone interested in human behavior -- should turn off E! and head down to Mr. Almereyda's film.
  57. This is high-speed action realism carried off with the dexterity of a magician pulling a hundred rabbits out of a hat in one graceful gesture. The crowning flourish is an extended car chase through the streets and tunnels of Moscow that ranks as one of the three or four most exciting demolition derbies ever filmed.
  58. If the narrow biographical focus of “The Iceman” prevents it from being a great crime movie, on its own more modest terms it is an indelible film that clinches Mr. Shannon’s status as a major screen actor.
  59. Wavering between light comedy and drama with wonderfully natural performances, 17 Girls doesn't judge anyone's behavior.
  60. Mr. Parker has brilliantly updated his source and grasped its essence, composing a sorrowful and hilarious tone poem about alienated labor, or an absurdist workplace sitcom, as if a team of French surrealists had been put in charge of "The Drew Carey Show."
  61. How was this careless, self-destructive human rhythm machine able to outlast almost all her peers? Maybe the vitality of the jazz she made kept her alive. She was one tough lady.
  62. It tells a finely nuanced tale of right, wrong and the gray area in between.
  63. One of the juiciest male characters to pop up in an independent film this year.
  64. Like its hero, who is brave without a trace of bravado, Overlord is unusually quiet and thoughtful. The scale and ambition of combat movies has usually been epic, but this one is disarmingly lyrical and subjective.
    • 96 Metascore
    • 90 Critic Score
    The French Connection is a film of almost incredible suspense, and it includes, among a great many chilling delights, the most brilliantly executed chase sequence I have ever seen. [8 October 1971]
    • The New York Times
  65. Prisoners is the kind of movie that can quiet a room full of casual thrill-seekers. It absorbs and controls your attention with such assurance that you hold your breath for fear of distracting the people on screen, exhaling in relief or amazement at each new revelation
  66. Harboring few ambitions beyond knock-your-socks-off action sequences, this crafty revenge thriller delivers with so much style — and even some wit — that the lack of substance takes longer than it should to become problematic.
  67. A brilliant satire of emotional politics.
  68. The movie, like its subject, refuses to stir up unnecessary melodrama. There are many small conflicts and psychological undercurrents, but the closest thing to a narrative theme is the effect Andrée has on the Renoir household.
  69. In small but significant ways, Queen to Play defies expectations. It dangles the possibility of an affair between Hélène and Kröger in games that the film likens to courtship rituals in a classic screwball comedy.
  70. The songs in Office aren’t especially memorable. But it’s hard to care too much when you have a director who knows how to create tension by moving the camera and characters even while he’s delivering a nimble political softshoe with filmmaking dazzle.
  71. The story is full of emotion and danger, heroism and treachery, but it is told in a mood of rueful retrospect rather than simmering partisan rage.
  72. Lorna's Silence is engrossing and powerful, which may be just another way of saying it's a film by the Dardenne brothers. If it falls a bit short of the standards of their best work, that is only because it is not quite a masterpiece.
  73. Recording every success and setback, the wrenching documentary Crime After Crime favors the personal over the political, creating a no-frills portrait of a stoic and remarkably unembittered woman.
  74. Its low-key affect and decidedly human scale endow Once with an easy, lovable charm that a flashier production could never have achieved. The formula is simple: two people, a few instruments, 88 minutes and not a single false note.
  75. It is to Mr. Gibney’s great credit that while he pays due attention to the outsize, cartoonish celebrity persona Thompson fell back on when his literary powers began to wane, this film concentrates on the bold, innovative journalism that secured Thompson’s reputation and assures his immortality.
  76. What the studio does, brilliantly, is preserve a hand-drawn look and feel in its work, as in the exteriors in The Secret World, where the characters pop against a painterly meadow.
  77. Experience filmgoing joy.
  78. Ruby Sparks doesn't try to pretend to be more than it is: a sleek, beautifully written and acted romantic comedy that glides down to earth in a gently satisfying soft landing.
  79. When this hugely ambitious project began, it was a longitudinal study of class divisions among English schoolchildren. But time and persistence have turned it into much more.
  80. A rebus, a romance, a gothic thriller and a woozy comedy, The Handmaiden is finally and most significantly a liberation story.
  81. A big, awkward, crazily ambitious, sometimes breathtaking motion picture that comes as close to being a popular epic as any movie about this country since "The Godfather."
  82. Winter Sleepers has many such breathtaking moments in which sounds and images synergize with an explosive precision.
  83. Neither sensationalistic nor sentimental, Ms. Berg’s film is clear-sighted, tough-minded and devastating, a portrait of individual criminality and institutional indifference, a study in the betrayal of trust and the irresponsibility of authority.
  84. As the war in Afghanistan returns to the front pages and the national debate, we owe the men in Restrepo, at the very least, 90 minutes or so of our attention. If nothing else, this film, in showing how much they care about one another, demands the same of us.
  85. A refreshing movie that's so good natured, so confident of its ability to provoke not queasy awe or numb exhaustion but pure delight.
  86. More than in any of his previous films, Mr. Swanberg and his cast have refined a seemingly effortless style of semi-improvised storytelling so natural that it barely seems scripted. Life just happens.
  87. The Namesake, adapted from Jhumpa Lahiri’s popular novel, conveys a palpable sense of people as living, breathing creatures who are far more complex than their words might indicate.
  88. Family dynamics examined through the prism of art: The Woodmans, C. Scott Willis's compelling documentary study of an artistic clan whose comfortable life was shattered by the suicide of its youngest member, asks profound questions to which there really are no answers.
  89. Not for the faint of heart, though it has no scenes of overt violence, and barely a tear is shed. It is also strangely thrilling, not only because of the quiet assurance of Mr. Kore-eda's direction, but also because of his alert, humane sense of sympathy.
  90. This fabulously inventive debut feature, written and directed by the British comedian Joe Cornish, never flags.
  91. Conceived in the shadow of American pop rather than in its bright light, this tense, effective iteration of Bob Kane's original comic book owes its power and pleasures to a director who takes his material seriously and to a star who shoulders that seriousness with ease.
  92. [An] exquisite, beautifully shot meditation on love clouded by fear and doubt.
  93. You may find yourself resisting this sentimental pageant of early-20th-century rural English life, replete with verdant fields, muddy tweeds and damp turnips, but my strong advice is to surrender.
  94. Broken Embraces leaves the viewer in a contradictory state, a mixture of devastation and euphoria, amusement and dismay that deserves its own clinical designation. Call it Almodóvaria, a syndrome from which some of us are more than happy to suffer.
  95. No other performer (Jack Nicholson) in an Antonioni film, except Jeanne Moreau in "La Notte," has so gracefully submitted to Mr. Antonioni and survived intact. (Review of Original Release)
  96. A rich, thought-provoking film.
  97. The film is a requiem for the living as well as for the dead.
  98. It would be comforting to imagine that The Optimists, Goran Paskaljevic's viciously funny gloss of Voltaire's "Candide," was a site-specific satire of this Serbian director's homeland in the post-Milosevic era.

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