The New York Times' Scores

For 12,236 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 3.2 points lower than other critics. (0-100 point scale)
Average Movie review score: 60
Highest review score: 100 Tuesday, After Christmas
Lowest review score: 0 The Emoji Movie
Score distribution:
12236 movie reviews
  1. The strength of Tuesday, After Christmas, Mr. Muntean's fourth feature, lies in its rigorous, artful and humane fidelity to quotidian circumstance.
  2. Equal parts disturbing and humorous, informative and bizarre, Rat Film is a brilliantly imaginative and formally experimental essay on how Baltimore has dealt with its rat problem and manipulated its black population.
  3. A stunning feat of literary adaptation as well as a purely cinematic triumph.
  4. It is a rich, beautifully organized and illustrated modern history of Eastern European Jewry examined through the life and work of the author, born Sholem Rabinovich in Pereyaslav (near Kiev) in 1859.
  5. An instant classic, a comedy that captures the sexual confusion and moral ambivalence of our moment without straining, pandering or preaching.
  6. Manages to be touching as well as silly, thrilling and just a bit exhausting. The secret to its success is a genuine enthusiasm for the creative potential of games, a willingness to take them seriously without descending into nerdy pomposity. I am delighted to surrender my cynicism, at least until I've used up today's supply of quarters.
  7. It Comes at Night is pretty terrifying to sit through, but it may be even scarier after it’s over, when you sift through what you’ve seen and try to piece together what it may have meant.
  8. The miracle of the movie is that, like Toni, it transcends blunt, reductive categorization partly because it’s free of political sloganeering, finger wagging and force-fed lessons. Any uplift that you may feel won’t come from having your ideas affirmed, but from something ineluctable – call it art.
  9. Like “The Shining” and its maze within a maze, Mr. Ascher’s movie is something of a labyrinth. Puzzling your way through its compilation of vaguely lucid and crackpot ideas is pleasurable though, for avid movie lovers, it may also feel like a warning.
  10. Neither the neighborhood intimacy of "Mean Streets" nor the grandeur of the "Godfather" movies is imaginable without Visconti's example. Its richness, though, is inexhaustible, and well served by the spotless new 35-millimeter print being shown at Film Forum.
  11. The genius of 12 Years a Slave is its insistence on banal evil, and on terror, that seeped into souls, bound bodies and reaped an enduring, terrible price.
  12. Surely the best movie yet made from Mr. Irving's fiction. It may even belong in the rarefied company of movies that are better than the books on which they are based.
  13. By introducing funky licks, fancy footwork and many of his own compositions to the band's stodgy set list of jazz standards, this indomitable leader (whose declining health adds a poignant twang to the film's final scenes) instilled racial pride alongside musical competency.
  14. No Country for Old Men is purgatory for the squeamish and the easily spooked. For formalists -- those moviegoers sent into raptures by tight editing, nimble camera work and faultless sound design -- it’s pure heaven.
  15. Cruelty and humor are nestled like spoons in a drawer. Mr. Lanthimos’s method is to elicit an appreciative chuckle followed by a gasp of shock, and to deliver violence and whimsy in the same even tone. “The Lobster” is often startlingly funny in the way it proposes its surreal conceits, and then upsettingly grim in the way it follows through on them.
  16. To skip Moolaade would be to miss an opportunity to experience the embracing, affirming, world-changing potential of humanist cinema at its finest.
  17. It’s ultimately a movie — one of the most rigorous and thoughtful I’ve seen — about the ethical and existential traps our fame-crazed culture sets for the talented and the mediocre alike.
  18. Go see this movie. Take your children, even though they may occasionally be confused or fidgety. Boredom and confusion are also part of democracy, after all. Lincoln is a rough and noble democratic masterpiece - an omen, perhaps, that movies for the people shall not perish from the earth.
  19. Possibly the best work of any kind about the Vietnam War since Michael Herr's vigorous and hallucinatory book "Dispatches."
  20. In exchange for three hours of your time, Yi Yi will give you more life.
  21. The final shot, accompanied by an improbable but perfect musical cue, is an astonishing cinematic gesture, an appalling, hilarious statement about modern values, the state of the world, human nature and everything else. This is a movie that lives up to its name.
  22. A triumphant, cleverly disorienting journey through a demimonde that springs entirely from Mr. Tarantino's ripe imagination, a landscape of danger, shock, hilarity, and vibrant local color. Nothing is predictable or familiar within this irresistably bizarre world. You don't merely enter a theater to see Pulp Fiction; you go down a rabbit hole. [23 Sept 1994]
    • The New York Times
  23. Probably the most breathtakingly gorgeous film of the year, dizzy with a nose-against-the-glass romantic spirit that has been missing from the cinema forever.
  24. Children of Men may be something of a bummer, but it’s the kind of glorious bummer that lifts you to the rafters, transporting you with the greatness of its filmmaking.
  25. Line for line, scene for scene, it is one of the best-written American film comedies in recent memory and an implicit rebuke to the raunchy, sloppy spectacles of immaturity that have dominated the genre in recent years.
  26. The film makes uncompromising demands on your attention and your empathy. But it is also illuminating and, in its downbeat, deliberate way, exhilarating.
  27. It is a great movie, by a major figure in world cinema.
  28. What Maisie Knew lays waste to the comforting dogma that children are naturally resilient, and that our casual, unthinking cruelty to them can be answered by guilty and belated displays of affection. It accomplishes this not by means of melodrama, but by a mixture of understatement and thriller-worthy suspense.
  29. A thorny masterpiece.
  30. Something close to a masterpiece, a work of extreme -- I am tempted to say evil -- genius.
  31. Mr. Boyle has a knack for tackling painful, violent or unpleasant subjects with unremitting verve and unstoppable joie de vivre.
  32. With Where the Wild Things Are Jonze has made a work of art that stands up to its source and, in some instances, surpasses it.
  33. Mr. Nance turns his thought into a performance of vulnerability that’s all too relatable in its indulgences. It has heart without becoming cloying.
  34. Even in the most chaotic fights and collisions, everything makes sense. This is not a matter of realism — come on, now — but of imaginative discipline. And Mr. Miller demonstrates that great action filmmaking is not only a matter of physics but of ethics as well. There is cause and effect; there are choices and consequences.
  35. Dropping us into a perfect storm of avarice, this cool and incisive snapshot of global capitalism at work is as remarkable for its access as for its refusal to judge.
  36. Full of brilliantly executed coups de théâtre, showing the director's natural flair for spectacle.
  37. Not merely an interesting document from a far-off place; it is a masterpiece.
  38. [Allen's] most sustained, satisfying and resonant film since “Match Point.”
  39. Toni Erdmann, proceeding in a perfectly straightforward manner, from one awkward, heartfelt, hilarious scene to the next, wraps itself around some of the thorniest complexities of contemporary reality.
  40. For any believer in humankind’s instinct to transcend boundaries, the Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 space probes, and the NASA team that produced them, inspire awe. The Farthest, a dazzling documentary written and directed by Emer Reynolds, illustrates why.
  41. Duchess of Langeais seems to me a nearly impeccable work of art -- beautiful, true, profound.
  42. A small movie perfectly scaled to the big performance at its center.
  43. "Print the legend," Mr. Wilson says at one point, both quoting John Ford and laying the foundation for his own often fact-free fabulous fabulism. And this movie is just that -- fabulous.
  44. Thanks to exultant wit and so many distinctive voices, Toy Story is both an aural and visual delight.
  45. With its careful, unassuming naturalism, its visual thrift and its emotional directness, Million Dollar Baby feels at once contemporary and classical, a work of utter mastery that at the same time has nothing in particular to prove.
  46. Turns out to be a smashing success, a juggernaut of an action-adventure saga that owes noithing to the past. To put it simply, thi is a home run. [6 August 1993, p. C1]
    • The New York Times
  47. Mr. Turner is a mighty work of critical imagination, a loving, unsentimental portrait of a rare creative soul. But even as it celebrates a glorious painter and illuminates the sources of his pictures with startling clarity and insight, the movie patiently and thoroughly demolishes more than a century’s worth of mythology about what art is and how artists work.
  48. A beautifully written, seamlessly directed film with award-worthy performances by Ms. Rampling and Ms. Young.
  49. Lacking epic pretensions and modest in scale, running under 90 minutes, Anesthesia is really closer in spirit to Rodrigo García’s delicate 2005 gem, “Nine Lives.” And it doesn’t waste a word or an image.
  50. The Prince of Tides marks Ms. Streisand's triumphantly good job of locating that story's salient elements and making them come alive on the screen.
  51. A tough, gorgeous, vastly entertaining throwback to the Hollywood that did things right. As such, it enthusiastically breaks most rules of studio filmmaking today.
  52. An entire family chronicle, along with four decades of French social and economic history, is recapitulated as a lavish, hectic dinner, complete with music and belly dancing. It will leave you stunned and sated, having savored an intimate and sumptuous epic of elation and defeat, jealousy and tenderness, life and death, grain and fish.
  53. Dunkirk is a tour de force of cinematic craft and technique, but one that is unambiguously in the service of a sober, sincere, profoundly moral story that closes the distance between yesterday’s fights and today’s.
  54. Inside Out is an absolute delight — funny and charming, fast-moving and full of surprises. It is also a defense of sorrow, an argument for the necessity of melancholy dressed in the bright colors of entertainment.
  55. Even as Mr. Mungiu maintains a detached, objective point of view, allowing the details of the story to speak for themselves, he also allows you to glimpse the complex and volatile inner lives of his characters.
  56. The audacity of The Missing Picture — a brilliant documentary about a child who held on to life in Cambodia’s killing fields — is equaled only by its soulfulness.
  57. This lean character-driven movie has such an acutely observant screenplay that it is easy to empathize with people struggling to make a decent living by hook or crook. Its psychological precision elevates it to something more than a genre piece.
  58. Aquarius is a marvelous and surprising act of portraiture, a long, unhurried encounter with a single, complicated person. And that is enough to make it a captivating film, an experience well worth seeking out. But there is also, as I’ve suggested, more going on than the everyday experiences of a modern matriarch.
  59. I'll go out on a limb: I can't believe the year will bring forth anything to equal The Purple Rose of Cairo. At 84 minutes, it's short but nearly every one of those minutes is blissful.
  60. Despite its affection for the quirks of its characters and their milieu, the film is most memorable for its gravity, for the almost tragic nobility it finds in sad and silly circumstances.
  61. Here he (Murray) supplies the kind of performance that seems so fully realized and effortless that it can easily be mistaken for not acting at all.
  62. How did Mr. Panahi do this? I'm at a bit of a loss to explain, to tell you the truth, since my job is to review movies, and this, obviously, is something different: a masterpiece in a form that does not yet exist.
  63. It's a toughly told, very tall tale, one of the best escape (and escapist) movies of the season.
  64. Merchant, Ivory and Jhabvala triumph again with their entertaining, richly textured film. [13 March 1992]
    • The New York Times
  65. Nikolaus Geyrhalter's superb documentary is an unblinking, often disturbing look at industrial food production from field to factory.
  66. Mr. Greengrass knows how to do his job, and there’s no one in Hollywood right now who does action better, who keeps the pace going so relentlessly, without mercy or letup, scene after hard-rocking scene.
  67. Ms. Bigelow's direction here is unexpectedly stunning, at once bold and intimate: she has a genius for infusing even large-scale action set pieces with the human element.
  68. Mr. Zürcher has concocted something intimate yet otherworldly with this highly original debut.
  69. With her dramatically pale face framed by a voluptuous dark cloud of hair, Ms. Elkabetz is never more effective than when she’s holding still, her face so drained of emotion that it transforms into a screen within the screen on which another, indelibly private movie is playing.
  70. It's movie making of the high, smooth, commercial order that Hollywood prides itself on but achieves with singular infrequency.
  71. It’s an impeccable, creepy and genuinely transporting movie.
  72. About Elly is gorgeous to look at. The ever-changing sky and sea lend it a moodiness so palpable that the climate itself seems a major character dictating the course of events; the weather rules.
  73. Is it the greatest motion picture ever made? Probably not, although it is the greatest motion mural we have seen and the most ambitious film-making venture in Hollywood's spectacular history.
  74. Ms. Bell, who plays Carol with a perfect blend of diffidence, goofiness and charm, has written and directed an insightful comedy that is much more complex and ambitious than it sometimes seems.
  75. By the time the movie is over, you feel as if the people in it were friends you know well enough to tire of, and to miss terribly when they go away.
  76. In most movies, something happens; in Archipelago, many things happen, quietly yet meaningfully.
  77. This film, which was never released in America and will now be making its way across the country in limited release, has been immaculately restored and features new subtitles. You can get lost in the blackness of its heart and its shadows. You might never come back.
  78. It rediscovers the aching, desiring humanity in a genre -- and a period-- too often subjected to easy parody or ironic appropriation. In a word, it's divine.
  79. Succeeds in finding something larger than one man's misery. It turns dark truthfulness into the cinematic sentiment most worth celebrating this season.
  80. Inside Job, a sleek, briskly paced film whose title suggests a heist movie, is the story of a crime without punishment, of an outrage that has so far largely escaped legal sanction and societal stigma.
  81. Everything depends on the subtlety of the direction and the charisma of the performances. Augustine is intellectually satisfying partly because it communicates its ideas at the level of feeling, through the uncanny power of Soko’s face and body.
  82. If there's one movie that ought to be studied by military and civilian leaders around the world at this treacherous historical moment, it is The Fog of War, Errol Morris's sober, beautifully edited documentary portrait of the former United States defense secretary Robert S. McNamara.
  83. So effective does it close the distance between you and Mr. Bernstein that afterward you may find yourself scanning the streets, hoping to catch sight of him, as if for an old friend.
  84. Ms. Denis has an extraordinary gift for finding the perfect image that expresses her ideas, the cinematic equivalent of what Flaubert called le mot juste.
    • The New York Times
  85. A sublimely nimble evisceration of that cult of celebrity known as the British royal family.
  86. The result is an American masterpiece, independent to the bone.
  87. What makes it so instructively entertaining is the pivotal character of Claus von Bulow, played by Jeremy Irons within an inch of his professional life. It's a fine, devastating performance, affected, mannerly, edgy, though seemingly ever in complete control. [17 Oct 1990]
    • The New York Times
  88. The filmmakers record the flash of youth’s headlong energies, its bumps and bruises, and its melancholies and brilliant chaos.
  89. In what has been called the Year of the Documentary, "My Flesh and Blood" stands beside "Capturing the Friedmans" and "The Fog of War" as an unforgettable experience.
    • 87 Metascore
    • 100 Critic Score
    The film is both a comeback story and, more profoundly, a coming to terms with aging.
  90. With its swift, jaunty rhythms and sharp, off-kilter jokes, Frances Ha is frequently delightful. Ms. Gerwig and Mr. Baumbach are nonetheless defiant partisans in the revolt against the tyranny of likability in popular culture.
  91. A masterpiece about life, death and everything in between.
  92. One may legitimately debate the validity of Malick's vision, but not, I think, his immense talent. Badlands is a most important and exciting film.
  93. The best movie of its kind since the French director Guillaume Canet's hit from 2006, "Tell No One."
  94. In “Ex Libris,” democracy is alive and in the hands of a forceful advocate and brilliant filmmaker, which helps make this one of the greatest movies of Mr. Wiseman’s extraordinary career and one of his most thrilling.
  95. Chan Is Missing is not only an appreciation of a way of life that few of us know anything about; it's a revelation of a marvelous, completely secure new talent.
  96. Mr. Lee means for Malcolm X to be an epic, and it is in its concerns and its physical scope. In Denzel Washington it also has a fine actor who does for Malcolm X what Ben Kingsley did for “Gandhi.” [18 November 1992]
    • The New York Times
  97. Harvey Milk was an intriguing, inspiring figure. Milk is a marvel.
  98. The profound pleasures they offer derive not only from their deft metaphysical playfulness but also from their storytelling genius.
  99. Astonishing... One of the freshest American films of the decade. [4 Aug 1989]
    • The New York Times

Top Trailers